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Post-Super Bowl NFL Mock Draft 2021

With the Super Bowl and 2020 season officially closed, this is the first NFL Mock Draft of the 2021 off-season.
NFL Mock Draft 2021

The 2020 NFL season came to an end Sunday night and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are the 2020 Super Bowl champions. It was a season like no other and it is now officially time to start looking forward to the 2021 NFL mock draft and hopefully, a brighter future for the NFL experience.

Mock draft season is officially underway and it’s time for the draft hype to officially become overwhelming. This draft boasts is one of the most offensive-heavy classes in recent memory while featuring some of college’s biggest stars from the past three years. The allure of players like Trevor Lawrence and Ja’Marr Chase getting their first taste of NFL action is almost enough to sell the excitement of the 2021 class. Sprinkle in household names like Travis Etienne, Najee Harris, and Kyle Pitts and it’s easy to picture the impact this class is going to have on the league in their first years of action and beyond.

Unfortunately for the draft enthusiast, the NFL Combine has been reworked and will no longer take place for the first time since 1977. The Senior Bowl, like the college football season, also saw some decreased importance due to multiple first-round prospects like Mac Jones, Tevin Jenkins, and Levi Onwuzurike opting out of the game at various times. However, there will still be pro days for NFL scouts to get a feel for the physical traits the 2021 NFL Draft class possesses.

Now begins the long road to April 29th in Cleveland, Ohio where the draft will take place. With the 2020 NFL season officially closed, this is the first Mock Draft of the 2021 off-season.

NFL Mock Draft 2021 V.3

Draft order is based on current records during the 2020 NFL season via Tankathon 

1. Jacksonville Jaguars – Trevor Lawrence (Clemson) – Quarterback

The Lawrence match with the Jaguars is going to be boring to hear about, but there isn’t any reason to believe he won’t be the first overall pick in April’s draft. Jacksonville’s hiring of Urban Meyer only further alludes to the Jaguars being locked in on Lawrence. The former-Clemson quarterback will fill the most important position on the roster in Jacksonville and could quickly form an elite up and coming big-three with Lavishka Shenault and James Robinson.

2. New York Jets – Justin Fields (Ohio State) – Quarterback

The draft gets really interesting with the Jets selection at number-two. Robert Saleh’s team is full of holes and there really isn’t a reason to do anything but pick the best player available with maybe every pick throughout each of the seven rounds. However, the highest-valued position is the quarterback and the Jets haven’t done much with Sam Darnold over the three seasons since he was picked third overall. Both the Jets and Darnold need changes of scenery. With the way quarterbacks are being valued this off-season, there is a good chance Darnold yields a first-round pick.

3.  Houston Texans (via Miami Dolphins) – DeVonta Smith (Alabama) – Wide Reciever


Dolphins receive – Deshaun Watson

Texans receive – Tua Tagovailoa, 3rd overall pick 2021, 36th overall pick 2021, 1st round pick 2022, 3rd round pick 2022

Funny how things work out with draft picks. Here, the Dolphins end up with a top-five caliber quarterback in Watson and the Texans finally get back the draft capital they’ve nonchalantly given away. Tagovailoa won’t give the Texans a quarterback as proven as Watson and he’s probably going to need more than the weapons their offense possessed this past season. Smith has a preexisting connection with Tagovailoa and would provide the young quarterback with a receiver he can grow with and trust early in his career.

4. Atlanta FalconsZach Wilson (BYU) – Quarterback

The draft-world consensus is slowly becoming a quarterback for Atlanta. With a new coaching staff and general manager, Matt Ryan is no longer likely in the long-term plans and Wilson could be their next franchise quarterback. Having Ryan allows the Falcons to let Wilson sit for a year or two while he gets up to speed with the NFL’s pace. The leap in skill-level from BYU’s 2020 opponents to the NFL is significant. Patrick Mahomes needed a year on the bench and the Bills needed to wait two years for Josh Allen to finally become a top-tier quarterback.

5. Cincinnati Bengals – Penei Sewell (Oregon) – Offensive Tackle

Sewell and the Bengals have been a perfect fit since day one of the draft process. Joe Burrow was assaulted with pressure this past season and Mike Brown would likely be sprinting in the card if Sewell is still on the board at number five. He makes the flashy plays, he seamlessly moves to hit spot, he competes hard on every down and was probably the most dominant tackle in college in both 2018 and 2019. He was Pro Football Focus’s highest-graded tackle in history during his junior season.

6. Philadelphia Eagles – Ja’Marr Chase (LSU) – Wide Receiver

As Carson Wentz rumors surround the team, it’s hard to project if the Eagles will be looking to collect a quarterback at the top of the 2021 draft. Jalen Hurts‘ body of work is really tough to judge but Howie Roseman needs to get his quarterbacks more weapons. Chase’s ability to slip into open space and quickly cut his way out, creates a ton of yard after the catch. He’s not an athletic freak but Chase is a do-it-all receiver who would be the sure-fire first option in Philadelphia. 

7. Detroit Lions – Trey Lance (North Dakota State) – Quarterback

With Matthew Stafford headed to Los Angeles, there doesn’t seem like another option but quarterback with the seventh overall pick. There’s probably even a good chance that the Lions use some of the draft capital they acquired in the Stafford trade to move up into the top-five and get the quarterback they covet most. New offensive coordinator and former running back Anthony Lynn saw Justin Herbert flourish under his watch in 2020 and could have a similar effect on Lance. Like Hebert coming in last season, Lance is a lot more traits than polish right now.

8. Carolina Panthers  Kyle Pitts (Florida) – Tight End

Judging by the way Matt Rhule approached the draft in 2020, he likely understands that building a contender is a multi-year process. Picking all defensive players last season was a bold strategy but one that may pay off in the long-term. Pitts would greatly help the Panthers start to build on the offensive side of the ball. He likely isn’t going to provide the blocking a traditional tight end gives you but his ability to easily get open is maybe the best of any player in the draft. Rhule doesn’t need to rush to find a quarterback with Teddy Bridgewater having two years left on his contract.

9. Denver Broncos –  Patrick Surtain II (Alabama) – Cornerback

The Broncos have made a point over the last few seasons to try and keep their secondary strong. The days of the ‘No-Fly Zone’ are long gone but Broncos management has continually tried to add more pieces to their back end. Vic Fangio’s defensive backs are spotty and Surtain could give them a number-one corner whom they can anchor their secondary around for maybe the next decade. He allowed just 21 completions for 273 yards in the 13 games he started in 2020.  

10. Dallas Cowboys  Rashawn Slater (Northwestern) – Offensive Tackle

At this point in the off-season, Slater is not going to be available with the 10th-overall pick, even if there is a run of quarterbacks within the top-10. However, this is the way the board falls and the Cowboys could not be happier. The deterioration of the Cowboys offensive line has led to the crumbling of their offense and rebuilding their biggest strength from a few seasons ago could help them get back into the playoffs as early as next season. Slater has maybe the best technique of any offensive lineman in the class.

11. New York Giants – Jaylen Waddle (Alabama) – Wide Receiver

If the Giants are going to keep riding Daniel Jones, they need to get him receivers that can do more than just catch the ball. Waddle is the most explosive player in the draft and can get behind defenses as well as create a ton of yards after the catch. He likely would’ve blown up the combine with his elite speed and change of direction — had there been one in 2021. New York needs to improve on the second-worst total and fourth-worst passing offenses they housed in 2020.

12. San Fransisco 49ers  Caleb Farley (Virginia Tech) – Cornerback

While the reemergence of Jason Verrett helped the 49ers defense finish in the top-five in total defense for the second year in a row, they were clearly not the same team when Richard Sherman was injured in 2020. Sherman is now set to be a free agent and Farley could be his long-term successor. Farley possesses a rare blend of length, athleticism, and ball skills at corner. He is still fairly new to the position having transitioned from wide receiver but has already shown every trait necessary to be a top-end NFL corner. His ceiling is scary-high.

13. Los Angeles Chargers – Kwity Paye (Michigan) – EDGE

Despite Herbert having a great rookie season on a fairly talented team, the Chargers could be looking to add in a number of key areas. They would likely be a prime trade down candidate if there is not a run on tackles but Paye’s upside might be too hard for them to pass up at 13th-overall. Melvin Ingram only playing seven games in 2020 saw the Chargers record the eighth fewest sacks in the NFL. Paye’s blend of deceptive quickness, motor, and raw power could make him and Joey Bosa maybe the best pass-rushing duo in the league down the line. 

14. Minnesota VikingsJaycee Horn (South Carolina) – Cornerback

The Vikings have been attacking the corner position in the first round for a few years now. They’re still trying to hit a home run at the position but 2020 third-round pick Cameron Dantzler had himself a nice rookie season. Adding Horn would help finally make the Vikings secondary the strength they’ve always wanted. While Dantzler is an incredibly slender corner, Horn has great size and the physicality that allows him to follow and frustrate bigger receivers.

15. New England PatriotsMicah Parsons (Penn State) – Linebacker

The Patriots are in a funny spot where they could really use upgrades in a number of areas. Their dream scenario is likely having a specialty player like Pitts or Waddle fall to them without trading up. Instead, Belichick goes best player available at a semi-position of need. Getting Dont’a Hightower back will help the defense reestablish themselves as a strong overall unit but they are still void of consistent front-seven talent. Parsons can play both on and off-ball and would likely be a big favorite of Jerod Mayo.

16. Arizona Cardinals – Gregory Rousseau (Miami) – EDGE

The Cardinals need to address the interior of their offensive line after the poor season they had running the ball but interior offensive line seems like more of a day-two problem to address. Haason Reddick finally broke out in the final year of his contract and will likely leave for a big paycheck somewhere else. Finding a corner would be nice but with the top-three off the board, Arizona hopes Rousseau can influence their opponent’s passers in a different way. Vance Joseph saw Riddick flourish as a strong-side linebacker and Rousseau is a better natural fit at the position.

17. Las Vegas RaidersJeremiah Owusu-Koramoah (Notre Dame) – Linebacker

Jon Gruden’s team has been about as up-and-down as you can find since he took over in 2018. 2021 will be his fourth draft class and he and Mike Mayock have still only taken one linebacker — Azeem Victor who never played a snap for the Raiders. Owusu-Karamoah has a similar build and background to Tanner Muse, whom the Raiders drafted in the third round last year, but is both quicker and more agile coming out of school. Mayock needs to add more versatile defenders after finishing bottom-10 in each total, rushing, passing, and scoring defense in 2020.

18.  Miami DolphinsAlijah Vera-Tucker (USC) – Offensive Tackle/Guard

If the Dolphins end up picking in the top-10, it is almost guaranteed they would be looking to pick up a tackle. Miami’s offensive line is still very young but they finished 2020 as one of the worst in the NFL at both run and pass blocking. Similar to the rest of the young line, Vera-Tucker still has some learning to do before he is a viable NFL-caliber tackle. His athleticism and play after moving from guard to left tackle give him an incredibly high ceiling and floor as an offensive lineman.

19. Washington Football TeamChristian Darrisaw (Virginia Tech) – Offensive Tackle

Washington got great play out of their offensive line in 2020 but need will likely need to add more depth with four of their five starters set to be free agents in 2021 or 2022 —  including their most valuable offensive lineman in Brandon Scherff. Darrisaw has a great blend of sticky hand technique and length that should make him a day-one starter in the NFL. His play improved every year at Virginia Tech as he became maybe the best tackle to play in the 2020 season.

20. Chicago Bears  Sam Cosmi (Texas) – Offensive Tackle

The Cosmi hype-train has almost completely halted since potentially being in the race for the first tackle off the board in September but he has one thing that hasn’t changed: his size. At 6’7” 309 lbs, Cosmi is a massive tackle with fairly refined technique. The Bears went through a lot of offensive line permutations and they need to find stability outside of Charles Leno. Mekhi Becton taught us last year that the combination of size and athleticism goes a long way in evaluating NFL caliber tackles.

21. Indianapolis Colts – Rashad Bateman (Minnesota) – Wide Receiver

The Colts could go offensive tackle with their first pick but the more likely scenario is that they find one in free agency. Indianapolis doesn’t have a small window but they have a roster that could easily be an AFC contender with just a few tweaks. They’re going to make sure their new quarterback is protected but also need to provide him with an additional weapon. Bateman isn’t the biggest receiver but he’s physical at the catch point and has a large catch radius. He’s the kind of dependable receiver that fits well in any offense.

22. Tennessee TitansJaelan Phillips (Miami) – Defensive End

During his tenure, Jon Robinson has not been shy to do two things: add pass rushers no matter which way, and take chances on players with potentially outlying issues outside of football (see the Titans last two first-round draft picks for reference). Phillips checks off both of these boxes and sits right in the middle of them. His talent as a pass rusher has never been questioned but his previous retirement from football in 2018 adds some murkiness to his commitment to the NFL. However, if Phillips plans to play in the league for a long time, he has high-end athleticism and a relentless approach to beating offensive lineman.

23. New York Jets (via Seattle Seahawks) – Alex Leatherwood (Alabama) – Offensive Tackle

It’s crazy how fast the Jets could turn around their offense through the draft this year. After having virtually no pop under Adam Gase, selecting Leatherwood would give the Jets a cacophony of tools to use over the next half-decade. The combination of a new dual-threat quarterback in Fields, potentially another high-caliber receiver at the top of the second round to pair with Denzel Mims, and then two ultra-athletic offensive linemen in Becton and Leatherwood is one of the best foundations any new head coach could ask for on offense.

24. Pittsburgh Steelers – Mac Jones (Alabama) – Quarterback

Bringing in Dwayne Haskins seems like more of a security move than the Steelers finding their successor to Ben Roethlisberger. There’s also no guarantee that Haskins even makes it to next season as a Steeler. Pittsburgh is in a tight spot right now but their best case of action with their pick should be Jones. He shredded all of college football last year and while he doesn’t have a rocket arm or lightning-quick mobility, Jones is a very intelligent quarterback that throws with great anticipation and placement.

25. Jacksonville Jaguars (via Los Angeles Rams) –  Teven Jenkins (Oklahoma State) – Offensive Tackle

This pick could end up being part of a package to land the Raven’s Orlando Brown Jr. but the need remains the same. Cam Robinson will likely not be retained by the Jaguars after four years with the team and Urban Meyer needs to protect Trevor Lawrence. Jenkins played his most reps at right tackle at Oklahoma State but showed elite hand placement and solid athleticism as a pass blocker throughout the 2020 season. The Jags could also elect to go Jalen Mayfield if they’re looking for a more proven left tackle.

26. Cleveland BrownsNick Bolton (Missouri) – Linebacker

The Browns off-season seems pretty straight forward as of now — build the back-seven and worry about the rest later. Cleveland saw just how thin their backend was when either Denzel Ward or Mack Wilson missed any time. Bolton is not the biggest linebacker but his assault-like tackling ability at the point of attack makes him a big-hit waiting to happen. When Bolton finds the ball carrier, he’s going to make sure they don’t get through him. Cleveland needs an attacker like Bolton at the mike who can thump opposing players and provide adequate coverage when called upon.

27. Baltimore Ravens – Azeez Ojulari (Georgia) – EDGE

The Ravens would likely be looking to trade back in every scenario they can during next year’s draft. They lost their 3rd and 5th round picks to the Vikings in the Yannick Ngakoue trade and considering the Ravens had four third-round picks last, Eric DeCosta and John Harbaugh will likely be looking to add draft capital any way they can. If they stay at #27, an outside linebacking presence that can drop into coverage from the edge is a great fit for a Baltimore pass rush that was completely stifled in the playoffs by the Bills offensive line. Ojulari may be a little undersized but he is a perfect scheme fit in Don Martindale‘s defense.

28. New Orleans Saints –  Tyson Campbell (Georgia) – Cornerback

The Saints are in for a very long off-season. They’re entering cap hell and despite having a lot of success in 2020 and could probably go best player available on every pick. Campbell is an intriguing prospect as he was a five-star recruit whose play didn’t always reflect his raw ability. However, his play continued to improve in 2020 and has the traits to be a good man-to-man corner at the next level. He is a more than willing tackler and has the size and football IQ to play through bigger receivers.

29. Green Bay Packers – Christian Barmore (Alabama) – Defensive Tackle

Prior to the NFC playoffs, the Packers went out and signed Damon Harrison. Brian Gutekunst has seemed uncomfortable with the interior of his defensive line since losing Mike Daniels and Barmore could form a rock-solid interior duo with Kenny Clark. Barmore is currently most valuable on passing downs but showed an ability to completely take over a game with his performance against Ohio State in the National Championship. He’s probably the best pass-rushing interior lineman in the 2021 class. 

30. Buffalo BillsWyatt Davis (Ohio State) – Guard

Buffalo had one of their most successful seasons in franchise history last season but were very one dimensional on offense. If the yards weren’t coming from the passing game, then they weren’t coming at all. Amongst the 51 running backs with 100 or more carries in 2020, Devin Singletary and Zack Moss ranked third and ninth respectively in yards before contact. Davis isn’t a slouch in pass protection but he makes his money with his run blocking. His great footwork, power, and mobility should allow Buffalo to greatly diversify their running game.

31. Kansas City ChiefsZaven Collins (Tulsa) – Linebacker

The Chiefs Super Bowl came undone due to their offensive line troubles but a close second was their inability to come up and hold the Bucs offense when they threw short. Collins is the kind of playmaking linebacker that can do a bit of everything. He might not be the plus-athlete that Bolton or Parsons is but his mix of size and versatility make him very appealing to a team that may have to ask a lot of their linebackers. The Chiefs need to add more on defense as they start to play with the cap a little more.

32. Tampa Bay BuccaneersNajee Harris (Alabama) – Running Back

Tom Brady may have walked away with the Super Bowl MVP but the most dynamic player on offense for either team all night was Leonard Fournette. He finished the game with 136 total yards and had the touchdown that put away the game early in the third quarter. Harris is a rare blend at the running back position. He has a massive 6’2″ 230lb frame but has the athletic ability to be a three-down back in the modern-day NFL. It’s hard to find running backs at his size that can both catch and make people miss in the open field. Fournette likely earned himself a sizable pay raise due to his Super Bowl performance from someone outside of Tampa Bay.

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