Updated NFL Mock Draft

We’re just four days away from the 2021 NFL Draft. A night that gives every team a glimmer of hope, or almost every team (see the Packers 2020 draft). But for the most part fans can start to envision a better future for their favorite franchise. So as the date nears, below is my prediction for the top ten picks in the upcoming draft.

  1. Jacksonville Jaguars: Trevor Lawrence (QB)
Gerald Herbert/Associated Press

This pick has been made in many people’s minds for a long time. Trevor Lawrence was going to be headed to Jacksonville since they clinched the number one pick near the end of last season. Not much else to add to that.

2. New York Jets: Zach Wilson (QB)

Richard Shiro/Associated Press

For much of the offseason, the number two pick was where the draft was supposed to really begin. Were the Jets going to build around Sam Darnold or bring in a new QB? Well since the team moved on from Darnold, the consensus is they’re going to select Zach Wilson. Wilson burst onto the scene last season, and will likely be joining new coach Robert Saleh in NY.

3. San Francisco 49ers: Mac Jones (QB)

Kirby Lee/USA TODAY Sports

While I, and many other people might believe Justin Fields is a better prospect than Mac Jones, too much noise has been coming out regarding Jones and San Francisco. All the reports say the 49ers are leaning towards Jones. That’s not necessarily bad though. Jones was outstanding last season, as he was a nominee for the Heisman Trophy. Come Thursday I expect Mac Jones to be the future quarterback in SF.

4. Atlanta Falcons: Kyle Pitts (TE)

Sam Greenwood/Getty Images

The run on quarterbacks finally comes to an end. Some believe Atlanta should select a QB considering they likely won’t be picking this high in the future. I disagree considering Matt Ryan still has more than enough good years left. Instead the Falcons will select perhaps the best player in the entire draft. Kyle Pitts is a freak who has garnered comparisons to Calvin Johnson. Pitts will walk into the league as potentially a top-five tight end, and that’s not even close to his ceiling.

5. Cincinnati Bengals: Ja’Marr Chase (WR)

Terrill Well/247 Sports

Here’s where things will start to get really interesting. Many believe Cincinnati should select Oregon tackle Penei Sewell with this pick. And for good reason considering QB Joe Burrow was sacked 32 times in 10 games before getting injured. The Bengals’ offensive line was ranked 30th by Pro Football Focus. But instead of doing the logical thing, Cincinnati won’t be able to help themselves. Despite receiver not being a massive need, the team will jump at the chance to reunite Burrow and Ja’Marr Chase. Hopefully the former LSU teammates will have time to connect before Burrow is getting hit all over the field once again.

6. Miami Dolphins: Jaylen Waddle (WR)

Gary Cosby Jr./USA TODAY Sports

Once again a pick that I would disagree with, but still see happening is Jaylen Waddle to the Dolphins. DeVonta Smith should be the pick. Smith’s weight however will be enough for some teams to have concerns. Instead Miami will opt for another Alabama receiver. Jaylen Waddle will have a chance to change games in a way similar to Tyreek Hill. Not to mention the glaring need at receiver for Miami almost guarantees this pick to be an outside weapon.

7. Los Angeles Chargers: Penei Sewell (OT)

David Madison/Getty Images

TRADE: Los Angeles receives pick 7; Detroit receives pick 13, pick 159, 2022 first rounder.

The first trade of the draft is a big one. Los Angeles moves up to select one of the best tackle prospects in recent history. It’s obvious Justin Herbert is the future for the Chargers. And what better way to protect that future than with Penei Sewell. LA’s offensive line was terrible last season. They finished ranked last by Pro Football Focus while allowing Herbert to be sacked 32 times in 15 games. Simply put they need all the help up front they can get. As for Detroit, with multiple roster holes and a rebuild certain, they move down while acquiring a future first rounder.

8. Washington Football Team: Justin Fields (QB)

Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

TRADE: Washington receives pick 8; Carolina receives pick 19, pick 51, 2022 first rounder.

One big trade is followed up with an even bigger move. Washington has a glaring need at quarterback and they decide to go all in. Ryan Fitzpatrick and Taylor Heinicke simply aren’t the answer. Instead Washington realizes they are going to be in win now mode very soon. They have a legit defense, but can’t afford to be held back on offense anymore. Enter Justin Fields. A dynamic player who some consider the second best QB prospect in this class. Inserting Fields into Washington will make them a dangerous team for years to come. When it comes to Carolina the drop from 8 to 19 may seem steep. However with Pitts and Sewell off the board, there’s not a player left they view miles above the rest. Instead they take the extra second round pick this year, and first rounder next year to make up for the Sam Darnold trade.

9. Denver Broncos: Micah Parsons (LB)

Scott Taetsch/Getty Images

Quarterback will certainly be a possibility for the Broncos on Thursday. But I believe Denver will give Drew Lock one last chance to prove himself. So where does that leave the team for this pick. Offensive tackle could be an option considering Denver’s o-line was ranked 25th by PFF. Instead I expect the team to select perhaps the best defensive player in the draft, Micah Parsons. The Broncos allowed the eighth-most points per game last season, and have a need for a do it all linebacker. Parsons should step in right away to help get Denver back to its defensive roots.

10. New England Patriots: Trey Lance (QB)

Sam Wasson/Getty Images

TRADE: New England receives pick 10; Dallas receives pick 15, pick 120, 2022 second rounder.

New England finally makes a move for Tom Brady’s replacement. Cam Newton just doesn’t have it anymore. He averaged 177 passing yards per game, and threw eight touchdowns in 15 games last season. That’s not going to cut it in today’s league. The Patriots realize they need to make a move and do. North Dakota State’s Trey Lance has one of the highest ceilings in this class. However he may need to sit a year to get adjusted to the pro level. Expect the Patriots to have Cam start this season and give Lance the reigns next year. As for the Cowboys, with plenty of defensive players left including both of the top cornerback prospects, they feel comfortable moving down while acquiring more picks.

--

--

--

University at Buffalo ’20 | BA in Communication | Writer for The Sports Scientist & Kicks N’ Cleats

Love podcasts or audiobooks? Learn on the go with our new app.

Recommended from Medium

Tokyo 2020: lessons for local sponsors and the promise of Olympic sponsorship rebound

METS RELIEVE CHILI DAVIS AND TOM SLATER OF THEIR DUTIES

NFL Week One Takeaways

MEDICAL UPDATE ON SETH LUGO

METS ACQUIRE LHP JOEY LUCCHESI IN THREE-TEAM TRADE

Farm Report Recap: 6/17

Which Playoff Matchup Is the Most Captivating?

Los Angeles Chargers Team Preview

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store
Jacob Burns

Jacob Burns

University at Buffalo ’20 | BA in Communication | Writer for The Sports Scientist & Kicks N’ Cleats

More from Medium

Acceptance and Redemption Through the Eyes of One Particular Ronin

What is the History of the News?

“The While Flame”: Eglantyne Jebb and the rights of children

Putin’s War: A Chronicle of Evil versus Democracy, Chapter 2