NOTE: This mock draft is based off both what I think NFL teams will do and what I would do.
1: Jaguars: T. Lawrence, QB, CLEM
Do I need to explain myself?
2: Jets: Z. Wilson, QB, BYU
With Darnold being traded, it seems to be clear they like one of the QB options sitting at 2 (unless they trust James Morgan cuz it’s the Jets). With the consensus opinion being Wilson is the 2nd best QB and GM Joe Douglas saying it’s a “fair assumption” that they like Wilson at 2, this is almost a no brainer.
3: 49ers (via MIA): J. Fields, QB, OSU
I know the rumors are that they want Mac Jones but come on now. Do you really think the Niners front office is stupid enough to trade into the top 3 to take a QB with a relatively low ceiling who is the consensus #5 QB that they could’ve gotten at 12? It just doesn’t make sense to me. I think they’re pulling a Dolphins and smoke-screening this entire situation. This was between Lance and Fields for me. I picked Fields since he seems to have the higher floor, and the Niners are in win now mode.
4: Patriots (via ATL): T. Lance, QB, NDSU
ATL receives 15th, 46th, 122nd, 2022 1st
NE receives 4th
Hear me out. Yes, this isn’t the usual Patriots way, but this isn’t the usual New England Patriots. This offseason, the Patriots signed the 2 top TE’s, one of the top edge rushers, 2 nice WRs, a starting quality DT, and a high end LB. Belichick is clearly going aggressive this offseason in a desperate attempt to regain some of that Patriots dynasty form. Their biggest hole as of right now is the QB position as a past his prime Cam Newton is leading the charge. While his weapons sucked last year, Newton put up terrible throwing numbers and just didn’t look like himself. Trey Lance is the perfect pick for the Patriots as he can both be the future franchise QB, bring in some competition for a lack luster QB room, and can learn from a player he resembles a lot of in Cam Newton.
5: Bengals: P. Sewell, OT, ORE
This one has been mocked up since the end of the 2020 draft. While Chase is an intriguing option, having his historic year with Bengals QB Joe Burrow, Sewell is just too good of a prospect to pass up at their biggest need. As well as this, they could possibly grab Terrace Marshall in the 2nd round, who also played with Joe Burrow, albeit being the WR3/WR4 on that team.
6: Dolphins (via PHI): J. Chase, WR, LSU
While the Dolphins WR has some nice names, including Will Fuller and Devante Parker, Chase is the best player available and the Dolphins could use another play maker. Chase is debatably the best WR prospect in the past 5 years and doesn’t have many, if any weaknesses. He’ll most likely walk in as the WR1 on day 1.
7: Lions: D. Smith, WR, ALA
I know that most people think that Waddle is a better prospect than Devonta Smith, and I agree with them. For me, however, the pick is Devonta Smith since I think he has a better chance to be successful as an outside receiver than Waddle due to Waddle’s shorter height. If he puts on another 5-15lbs, Smith would be a better prospect than Waddle for me as it is.
8: Panthers: K. Pitts, TE, FLO
A TE that runs a 4.44u. 4.44. Pitts is arguably the best non QB prospect in this draft (#2 behind Chase for me) and it’s clear to see why. He has the versatility to play anywhere from a traditional in-line TE to an X style WR. He has the hands, the athleticism, the intangibles, and the work ethic to become the best TE in the NFL and quite possibly the best in NFL history.
9: Broncos: M. Jones, QB, ALA
I’m lower on Mac than most. He just doesn’t have the ‘it’ factor to have a high ceiling. He’ll probably come into the NFL as a top 15-20 QB, but I don’t think he’ll be anything more than that. He’s small, unathletic, and got the privilege of having the best everything in college. I only have him going this high because the Broncos are potentially just a QB away from contention, and I think that Mac will walk in as a top 20 QB, which would be enough for them given the talent he’ll be surrounded with.
10: Cowboys: P. Surtain II, CB, ALA
If Farley didn’t injure his back, he’d be the pick here, but I think Cowboys fans will be happy with this pick anyways. He has a high ceiling and would fit nicely for a team whose best cornerback is Trevon Diggs, the most overrated CB out there.
11: Giants: R. Slater, OT/G, NW
There were 2 others who I was thinking of for this pick, Waddle and Parsons. I ended up picking Slater for them as the Giants OLine was atrocious throughout the entire year and didn’t get any better. Their current best OLman for me is either Thomas or Peart, none of those guys having stellar rookie years. They clearly wanna give DJ a genuine shot with the signings of Golladay, Ross, and Rudolph, so why not continue that with some protection?
12: Eagles (via MIA/SF): J. Waddle, WR, ALA
This one’s a no brainer if he’s on the board. The Eagles weakest position by far is the receiving threats, only having Reagor and Fulgham on the WR core and Ertz basically declaring himself out of Philly. As well as this, he could very well be the best guy on the board.
13: Titans (via LAC): J. Horn, CB, SC
LAC receives: 22nd, 85th, 2022 4th
TEN receives: 13th
After losing both Adoree Jackson and Malcom Butler, the Titans are in desperate need of a corner. Their current number one at the position is a 32 year old Janoris Jenkins. While they could stick at 22 and hope Farley falls to them, they don’t wanna take any risks with the corner needy teams ahead of them such as the Vikings, Falcons, Cardinals, Raiders, and Bears. Horn is my 1b corner, barely behind Surtain, and I really like his potential. If coached well, he could be a top 10 corner in the NFL.
14: Vikings: C. Darrisaw, OT, VT
Darrisaw could’ve been the number one OT in a different draft class. He’s very talented and the Vikings desperately need any OLine help they can get. If he puts on some extra pounds, he could become a top 5 LT in the NFL.
15: Falcons (via NE): M. Parsons, LB, PSU
If the Falcons can get the 2nd best defensive player in the draft while getting an extra 2nd, 4th, and future 1st, it’d be hard to argue against them having the best day 1 in the league. While he’s not a typical MIKE LB, he’s a versatile, freak athlete that could be used as an edge rusher, a run stuffer, and a zone coverage LB.
16: Cardinals: C. Farley, CB, VT
Even though there are reports that Farley is off the Cardinals board, they’d be stupid to pass on him. Easily a top 10 prospect before back surgery, Farley is a blazing fast player who played well for VT, despite only recently switching to corner. Farley’s roof is over the charts and is well worth the risk at pick 16.
17: Raiders: A. Vera-Tucker, OT/G, MIN
After a nice pro day, Vera-Tucker’s stock climbs even more. I’d consider him being picked at 17 a steal for Las Vegas. He has experience playing both guard and tackle for Minnesota, he can practically play anywhere on the OLine. He’d be a nice replacement for either Gabe Jackson or Trent Brown, depending on how they use him. I’d imagine he’d start at RT as they seem to have their future RG already in Denzelle Good.
18: Dolphins: K. Paye, EDGE, MICH
This a case where the Dolphins get a win-win. They pick both the best player available and at one of their top needs. After trading Shaq Lawson for Benardrick McKinney, they’re thin at the EDGE position, and Paye is my top EDGE rusher.
19: Washington: J. Owusu-Koramoah
This boosts what was already an elite pass defense to debatably the best in the league. Despite statistically being a top 2 pass D in the NFL last year, the WFT LBs, besides maybe Holcomb, aren’t very good in coverage due to the loss of Kevin Pierre-Louis. Koromoah can fix that almost instantly. He’s like a slower, less risky Isaiah Simmons, he can play anywhere on the defense at an elite level, whether that’s LB, S, or slot CB.
20: Bears: R. Bateman, WR, MIN
If he committed in 2019, Bateman could’ve gone higher than he is right now. Bateman doesn’t have a ton of weaknesses, as he runs routes well, catches 50/50 balls, doesn’t drop too much, and has underrated speed. He’s one of my favorite prospects and I wouldn’t be too surprised if he goes ahead of Waddle or Smith.
21: Colts: T. Jenkins, OT, OKST
I don’t know what to think of Jenkins. He has traits to be elite, but he has some technical issues. It might take a little bit for him to be as elite as people are thinking he’ll be. I don’t think he’ll be great week 1, but he could be good come week 10ish or 2022.
22: Chargers (via TEN): S. Cosmi, OT, TEX
It’s no secret that the Chargers need protection. In 15 games, Herbert got sacked 32 times. That’s really not good. While Cosmi needs to fix his pad level, as he stands a staggering 6’7, He should help with the protection and could end up being a cornerstone for the Chargers OLine.
23: Jets (via SEA): G. Newsome, CB, NW
The Jets number 1 CB as of right now is Blessaun Austin, so there’s clearly a hole at the cornerback spot. With the Jets switching to a 4-3 scheme with zone coverages and prioritizing speed, Newsome will be a perfect fit for the new look Jets defense.
24: Ravens (via PIT): Jaelan Phillips, EDGE, MIA
PIT receives: 27th, 171st
BAL receives: 24th
Ravens get what is potentially the best EDGE player in the class at pick 24, only costing them the 171st pick to do so. If Phillips didn’t get hurt, it’s very possible that he becomes a top 15 pick. As well as this, it fills a huge gap on the Ravens defense, as they lost both Matthew Judon to the Pats and Yannick Ngakoue to the Raiders.
25: Jaguars (via LAR): Alex Leatherwood, OT, ALA
Some people may consider this a reach for Jacksonville, but they need OLine badly. I like Leatherwood. He’s a powerful player and plays the game mean. If he cleans up his technique a little, he could be a franchise tackle or guard.
26: Browns: Gregory Rousseau, EDGE, MIA
Rosseau could’ve potentially gone in the top 10 if he didn’t opt out of the year. He’s a very versatile player who can play anywhere, whether that’s a 3-4 OLB or a 4-3 DT. His potential is very very high. However, he may need a year or two to develop, and where better place to develop than Cleveland with Myles Garrett as his teammate?
27: Steelers (via BAL): Jalen Mayfield, OT, MICH
I was also thinking of going Najee Harris with this pick, but I picked OT because of how important the position is. The Steelers could find someone with a later pick or even sign a free agent like Gurley or Edwards. With Villanueva most likely not going to get resigned, the OT position is by far their biggest weakness and can’t afford to wait until the 2nd round to take one.
28: Saints: Kadarius Toney, WR, FLO
For Winston to succeed, you need to surround him with talent. With the loss of Sanders, the Saints lack a ton of receiving threats, and Toney is the best one left in my opinion. Due to his speed, he can be both a nice field stretcher or screen target. While he doesn’t have a huge strength, he doesn’t have a huge weakness either, making him one of the safer picks in the draft.
29: Packers: Asante Samuel Jr., CB, FSU
With Lazard and MVS still being young, I doubt the Packers will go receiver with this pick. It’s between a LB and a corner for me, and the way Samuel’s stock is rising and how well of a scheme fit it is, I ended up going with the latter.
30: Bills: Jayson Oweh, EDGE, PSU
6 foot 5. 252 pounds. 4.36u 40 yd dash. Oweh is probably the most athletic player in the entire draft. While he didn’t record a single sack in the last year he played, he had 5 sacks and 2 forced fumbles the year prior. He also has time to develop on a DLine with good veterans, including Jerry Hughes.
31: Chiefs: Liam Eichenburg, OT, ND
Notre Dame has a long history of producing great NFL OLmen, including Zach Martin and Quenton Nelson. Eichenburg has qualities you like to see out of a tackle. Fluid feet, prototypical size, and the potential to be great in pass protection. I say ‘potential’ for a reason, as he’s not there yet, but I like the fit for him in KC.
32: Buccaneers: Daviyon Nixon, DT, IOWA
I’m really high on Nixon. He’s my number 1 DT for good reason. He’s very athletic and explosive, making him a great run defender and pass rusher. In order to stop his tremendous power, you have to double him. There are very little weaknesses to his game and if he played how he did this season last season; he’d definitely be a top 15 prospect. This would be the Ndamukong Suh replacement who could probably take his role right away if I’m being honest.
So there we have it. That is my 1st round mock draft as of April 9th, 2021. If you want to see more of me: check out my YouTube podcast: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCDKDncbeUIHZzY0LzMd4TUQ