Mock Drafts are a popular item this time of year, nearly everyone has them, nearly all of them are wrong. That is not to say they’re not entertaining, because they are. Being the draft freak that I am, of course I have to throw my hat in the mock draft arena…but I’m only giving out 1. This is my 2021 NFL Mock Draft 1.Only and for the first time ever, I’m projecting trades. Enjoy!
1.Jaguars- Trevor Lawrence – QB Clemson
2.Jets- Zach Wilson – QB BYU
3.49ers- Mac Jones – QB Bama
a.For the record, I do not agree with this call. But I think this comes down to Kyle Shannahan/John Lynch feeling supremely confident in their drafting ability and play calling. From everything you hear, Jones is more plug and play, ready to diagnose coverages, and if you call the right play, he’ll knock it out of the park. These other guys are more of the ‘bail you out’ types.
4.Falcons- Kyle Pitts TE Florida
a.The further along we go, the more that players who play on the inside get pushed down the draft. TE’s have historically not hit in the 1st round, but Pitts just looks, feels, and plays different. He’s a home-run pick, and for a team looking to deal Julio Jones, he’s the perfect matchup nightmare to replace him with.
5.Bengals- Ja’Mar Chase WR LSU
a.I don’t think the Bengals will be able to help themselves, pairing Chase with Higgins could be lethal. Plus, you factor in Burrow and Chase balled out @ LSU together, it makes too much sense.
a.Broncos swap with Phins and select Trey Lance - QB NDSU
7.Lions- Penei Sewell – LT Oregon
a.Lions want to run, run, and run some more. Having Sewell drop to them @ 7 is a dream scenario for a team that is at the starting line of a rebuild.
8.Panthers- Justin Fields – QB Ohio State
a.Perfect situation, drafting BPA, and it doesn’t matter if you have Sam Darnold, this creates competition and the Panthers are in a better place in terms of finding that next great QB – whether its Fields or Darnold.
9.Dolphins (via Denver)- Jaylen Waddle – WR Bama
a.Phins slid back because Pitts/Chase weren’t there. They’re still able to add another deep threat, and now between Will Fuller, Devonta Parker, and Waddle, you can see what you have in Tua.
10.Cowboys- Micah Parsons – LB Penn State
a.Sean Lee just retired, they need a new general on defense.
11.Giants- Patrick Surtain II – DB Bama
12.Eagles- DeVonta Smith – WR Bama
a.This is a team that has struggled offensively ever since they won the SB a couple years back. Now they’ll trot out a new QB, and give him some weapons to throw the ball to. (Eagles drafted Jalen Reagor in the first round last year)
13.Chargers- Alijah Vera-Tucker – LT USC
14.Vikings- Jaycee Horn – CB South Carolina
15.Patriots- Kwity Paye – EDGE Michigan
a.As much as NE would’ve loved if a QB fell to them, they weren’t going to go all in and trade up to get one. The Pats sit tight here and draft the best EDGE rusher in the class, further solidifying an already stout defense.
16.Cardinals- Trevon Moehrig – S TCU
17.Raiders- Jayson Oweh – EDGE Penn State
a.A bit of a reach, but the Raiders have been doing that over the years. Oweh is a freak athlete that Mike Mayock will salivate over adding to his defense.
18.Dolphins- Rashawn Slater – LT NW
a.Slater opted out in 2020 but started all 11 games in 2019. Can play both tackles. Big for a lefty QB.
19.Washington- Christian Darrisaw – LT VT
a.Darrisaw - All-American/All ACC first team. Only missed 1 game due to injury. Scouts seem to think he is easily the 2nd best tackle in this class
20.TRADE! Jags swap with Bears – selecting Kadarius Toney – WR Florida
a.Toney is getting Antonio Brown level comparisons and is clearly the most explosive player left on the board.
21.Colts- Jeremiah Owusu-Koramah
a.Owusu-Koramoah (pronounced oh-WOO-sue COR-ah-MO-uh). Basketball star in HS, great athlete. Raw talent. "JOK" made national headlines with his play as a junior, winning the Butkus Award as the country's top linebacker.
22.Titans- Jamin Davis – LB Kentucky
23.Jets- Elijah Moore – WR Ole Miss
24.Steelers- Jaelan Phillips – EDGE Miami
25.Bears- Kellen Mond – QB Texas A&M
a.They need to address this position. Mond comes from a Jimbo Fisher system in college, he was terrific, and we see QB’s getting moved in to the first round constantly these days.
26.Browns- Zaven Collins – LB Tulsa
27.Ravens- Rashod Bateman WR Minnesota
a.NFL ready route runner, excellent vs press coverage, physical in the open field. Perfect Raven.
28.Saints- Caleb Farley – CB VT
29.Packers- Terrace Marshall – WR LSU
a.Finally, the Packers get A-Rod another 1st round target.
30.Bills- Azeez Ojuari – LB Georgia
31.Ravens- Landon Dickerson – C Bama
32.Bucs- Asante Samuel Jr. – DB FSU
photo: getty images