The 2021 NFL Draft is right around the corner and were pretty deep into Mock Draft season already so I figured it was time for me to throw mine out there. This Mock Draft is what I would do for each team, not what I think will happen, so keep that in mind. Let’s get it started!
#1 Jacksonville Jaguars: Trevor Lawrence, QB Clemson
This has been analyzed and explained into the ground. It’s even worse than Burrow to Cincy last year, we all know its going to happen. I’d be willing to bet my life on it.
#2 New York Jets: Zach Wilson, QB BYU
Another one that almost seems to be penciled in at this point. They need a QB and Zach fits their offensive scheme perfectly so there is no need to overthink it. They could have striked while the iron was hot on Sam Darnold and got a decent pick for him but now that it seems to be set in stone that Zach is there guy, his value is dead. Take the best offer and go into the 2021 season with a rookie.
#3 San Francisco 49ers: Trey Lance, QB North Dakota St.
I don’t know if I have ever seen a more honest press conference from a HC and GM like the one following the big trades last Friday. Kyle Shanahan & John Lynch basically said they would be taking a QB and it was only a matter of time before Jimmy G would be on his way out of San Fran. Draft a crazy upside QB in Trey Lance and let him sit behind Jimmy for a year, learn the offense, learn from Jimmy, and show out in 2022.
TRADE: ATL receives Pick 9, Pick 71, 2022 1st, DEN receives Pick 4
#4 Denver Broncos (via ATL): Justin Fields
The Drew Locke era is (should be) over in Denver. He hasn’t been handed the best team to work with, but a new start is needed here. I see Justin Fields as NFL ready but I wouldn’t be upset at all if they decided to sit him for a year behind Drew. They could throw him in mid season if Drew isn’t performing well and it would be a better situation than throwing him out there week 1 with no real idea of how any NFL season works. It’s a good situation no matter what.
#5 Cincinnati Bengals: Penei Sewell, OT Oregon
People seem to think that the O-line for Cincy is solved because they signed Riley Reiff, it’s not. Penei Sewell is a plug and play franchise LT waiting there for a team who just lost their QB last season due to poor O-line play as a whole, but poor LT play specifically. This WR class is chalk full of talent and they can very easily address it in the later rounds of this draft. This is BPA and addressing their biggest need, it’s the only correct pick.
#6 Miami Dolphins: Ja’Marr Chase, WR LSU
Miami’s front office put on a clinic last Friday moving up and down the draft order like it was nothing. Eventually they acquired loads of draft compensation to move back 3 spots, the prime spot to get the top WR. Ja’Marr Chase has superstar capabilities at the WR position and would add an extra much needed weapon for Tua to throw to. I also considered a guy like Rashawn Slater here but with how deep this Tackle class is it’s worth getting the top WR and a Tackle later on with that 18th pick.
#7 Detroit Lions: Devonta Smith, WR Alabama
With all of the QB’s worthy of top picks already drafted (sorry, Mac) it’s time for the Lions to go all in on Jared Goff this season and give him a real chance. Whether you like it or not, he was the QB of a Super Bowl team and that’s nothing to scoff at. Get him a legitimate weapon in Devonta Smith and let them get to work. I do have concerns about his weight but he played in the SEC at this weight for 3 years and nothing went wrong, it’s not as big of a deal as people are making it.
#8 Carolina Panthers: Kyle Pitts, TE Florida
In a similar situation as the Lions, the Panthers should go all in on Teddy Bridgewater if they can’t get Deshaun this off season and see what they can get done. Kyle Pitts completes a full group of offensive weapons for Teddy and makes this offense one to really look out for.
#9 Atlanta Falcons (via DEN): Jaylen Waddle, WR Alabama
This was one of the harder picks in this whole draft because they have so many needs, but they are glaring needs. Corner was an option, Edge Rusher was an option, but I decided to go with Waddle to give this offense something they are missing. A smaller deep threat who can kill with his speed. Ridley is definitely a viable deep threat but he wins with route running, so it’s different. This opens up the playbook some more for new OC Dave Ragone and makes for possibly the best WR core in the league.
#10 Dallas Cowboys: Patrick Surtain II, CB Alabama
They need secondary help, it’s that simple. They lost Chidobe Awuzie in Free Agency to the Bengals and don’t really have anyone else of great value on the other side of Trevon Diggs so pairing these two up again is a no brainer. Surtain has Jalen Ramsey type potential and is an absolute technician at the CB position. Something the Cowboys haven’t consistently had in decades, at their own fault (Byron Jones being at Safety the first 3 years of his career still doesn’t make sense to me).
#11 New York Giants: Micah Parsons, LB Penn St.
The Giants need some help almost everywhere defensively so this was sort of a no brainer for me. Giving them the best defensive player and continuing to build up other needs later on in the draft.
#12 Philadelphia Eagles: CB Jaycee Horn, South Carolina
Outside of Darius Slay and Anthony Harris this Philly secondary has no one of note so they address it here with my #2 ranked CB in the draft. He fits the aggressive Philly market with his aggressive style of play and as long as he knocks down those penalties, he can be a great eventual #1 CB in the league.
#13 Los Angeles Chargers: Rashawn Slater, OT Northwestern
With them cutting Trai Turner this off season OT is a massive need for this team and the 2nd best Tackle in the class just so happened to fall to them. In my opinion this puts them in an even better spot then they were in with Trai Turner if Slater projects the way everyone thinks he will.
#14 Minnesota Vikings: Azeez Ojulari, DE Georgia
This team desperately needs someone on the other side of Danielle Hunter to make an impact and Azeez could very well be that guy. This is definitely a pick for the future though, Azeez’s game is so raw in 2 years time he could be an elite Edge Rusher in the league.
#15 New England Patriots: Mac Jones, QB Alabama
Mac is just too perfect for this system. He has all the potential to be a Jimmy G type guy for Belichick and more. Let him sit a year behind Cam Newton then throw him out there in 2022 and see what he does. No matter what their pick is though, the Patriots will be extremely fascinating to watch during the draft.
#16 Arizona Cardinals: Caleb Farley, CB Virginia Tech
The Cardinals are pretty needy at CB and due to injury concerns Farley has slipped down the board to them. This could easily turn out to be the steal of the draft if Farley is able to stay healthy at the next level because he holds all of the tools to be a #1 CB for them. His game is pretty similar to Patrick Peterson’s honestly so this is all about his health.
#17 Las Vegas Raiders: Christian Darrisaw, OT Virginia Tech
The Raiders front office is a complete mess and they have ruined their O-Line pretty bad. They need some help at RT so I just gave them the next highest Tackle on my board which happened to be Darrisaw. This organization is a pretty big wreck though so some Corner help, Edge Rusher, Line Backer, Wide Receiver, it all makes sense.
#18 Miami Dolphins: Alijah Vera-Tucker, OT USC
He played Guard his last season in college but this man needs to play Tackle at the next level. Whether its Left or Right they can kick Austin Jackson out to RT and put Tucker at LT or just plug him in at RT and he can play it well. Either way, this pick puts their O-line in a better spot than before and gives Tua some more time in the pocket.
#19 Washington Football Team: Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah LB Notre Dame
Washington quietly had one of the best Free Agencies in the league. Setting their Offense up nicely with weapons all over the place, so nicely they can address their need at LB here. Jeremiah gives their defense some good positional flexibility allowing maybe Landon Collins to play in the box while Koramoah plays some SS. When he is at LB though he gives their Defense some much needed speed at the position and a good option to cover TE’s.
#20 Chicago Bears: Samuel Cosmi, OT Texas
The Bears are in a pretty interesting spot with a lot of needs. I could see them going CB here but I opted to help out their O-line with Cosmi who I believe could be a very good Tackle at the next level. It’s a projected upgrade at one of the most expensive positions in football, so it makes sense.
#21 Indianapolis Colts: Kwity Paye, DE Michigan
Realistically I don’t see the Colts picking here. Chris Ballard is known for trading back and getting some more picks but I couldn’t justify a trade looking at any of the teams behind him so I just went with their biggest need. Kwity Paye is a machine at DE and provides some elite level run defending for the Colts here. His pass rush needs some work, but it’s clear he has the ability to be a good piece for any team.
#22 Tennessee Titans: Rashod Bateman, WR Minnesota
No matter who it is, they need to address the Receiver position here. Rashod Bateman adds some good size to their WR core not only on the outside but his tight footwork allows him to create mismatches in the slot. I could also see them going a guy like Kadarius Toney here or maybe even Elijah Moore reuniting two Ole Miss alumni but I see Rashod as a better player than both of those guys.
#23 New York Jets: Greg Newsome II, CB Northwestern
The Jets need some help pretty much everywhere outside of their D-Line but I would argue CB over anything at this point. Having Bless Austin and Bryce Hall as your starting outside CB’s just isn’t going to work so they grab Greg Newsome for some much needed help. He’s an aggressive man to man CB with some big upside if he can add some weight and if they can coach him into being a better tackler.
#24 Pittsburgh Steelers, Creed Humphrey, C Oklahoma
The Steelers get what could quite possibly be their next starting Center for a very long time. He has plenty of playing experience at Oklahoma and blocks great in zone schemes like the one run in Pittsburgh. He could use some more strength at the point of attack but throw him into the weight room a bit and he’ll be fine. People consistently mock a RB to this spot, stop it. I don’t see any RB’s being worth a first round pick this year. Maybe (and I mean maybe) Travis Etienne but that’s about it. Center is a much more needed position and a good one isn’t as easy to find as a good Running Back. Take a guy like Michael Carter in the 2nd round and you’ll be fine.
#25 Jacksonville Jaguars: Trevon Moehrig, S TCU
The Safety class isn’t all that deep this year but I am very high on Trevon. He fits the scheme that Jacksonville will be running this season and he can do what Joe Cullen wants out of his Safeties. He will be allowed to be the ball hawk he was at TCU in this Defense so the fit is all there. I have questions about his tackling but like I said, that’s not what Joe Cullen is really asking for all of the time so coach him up a bit and he’ll be great here.
#26 Cleveland Browns: Gregory Rousseau, DE Miami
Spoiler: I am not high on Rousseau like everyone else is. I think his tape is unreliable and most of his sacks came from him being at the right place at the right time. But, I think he fits perfectly into Cleveland’s D-Line. His game is extremely raw and learning from the likes of Myles Garrett, Takk McKinley, Malik Jackson, and Sheldon Richardson could do wonders for this kid. So throw him in there as a rotational piece and let him develop and craft his game into something that works for him. This is the only spot I would be comfortable with taking him in the first round.
#27 Baltimore Ravens: Terrace Marshall, WR LSU
The Ravens need a Wide Receiver, crazy I know. They signed Sammy Watkins but that definitely isn’t enough. It’s clear that Mark Andrews and Marquis Brown aren’t enough for this team or Lamar Jackson to succeed so throw in a tall and long guy like Terrace Marshall on the outside. It adds some much needed size to their WR Core and gives Lamar a new weapon, that’s always a good thing.
#28 New Orleans Saints: Kadarius Toney, WR Florida
The Saints have a very interesting situation at QB taking place but whoever is going to be in the pocket needs some more Weapons. Jared Cook and Emmanuel Sanders are both gone and Michael Thomas can’t get it done all by himself. Kadarius has the make up and skill set to be even better than Emmanuel Sanders for this team and adds some speed and deep threat to their offense.
#29 Green Bay Packers: Zaven Collins, LB Tulsa
The Packers Defense is constantly needing work and I know this might upset some people but, they don’t need to reach to grab a WR here. They just don’t, this class is too deep to do that. So grab a trust worthy and effective Linebacker like Collins and plug him into your Defense. He is a maniac when it comes to breaking down and tackling and can legitimately break the game.
#30 Buffalo Bills: Christian Barmore, DT Alabama
Barmore is an interesting prospect for me because I like him, I like his ability, but I am not at all as high on him as other people. His production has just been too inconsistent for me to feel comfortable enough taking him top 15 or 20. But the Bills get some nice depth at the DT position and head into the 2022 with some strong options on their Pass Rush.
#31 Kansas City Chiefs: Teven Jenkins, OT Oklahoma St.
Another hot take: The Chiefs need some O-Line help. I’m an absolute mad man I know. Teven Jenkins is an extremely violent blocker especially in the run game. He is a great plug and play option for the Chiefs, pretty simple.
#32 Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Alex Leatherwood, OT Alabama
Donovan Smith isn’t getting any younger and his contract isn’t the best for Tampa. I could see the team moving on from him after this season so why not add an absolutely massive man like Alex Leatherwood to develop behind Smith and then play him in 2022. People also seem to think a RB will go here to Tampa, stop it (again). They just signed Leonard Fournette again and have Ronald Jones for another season before needing to give him a new contact. Adding some RB depth should be a goal later in the draft, not here.
And there it is, my Mock Draft 1.0. Feel free to comment below your thoughts and let me know if you agree/disagree with any of these picks. Follow @MGAFootball on IG for NFL News and other content!