For many years now, I’ve conducted a complete, seven-round NFL mock draft. Including explanations for every single pick. I’m keeping that streak alive by getting the 2021 edition posted under the wire on draft day.
Enjoy my 2021 NFL Mock Draft, starting with pick #1 and ending with Mr. Irrelevant at #259.
Would love to hear your feedback in the comments below.
1. JAC – Trevor Lawrence/QB Clemson: The obvious first pick of the draft. It’s a strong QB class, five names going in the first round, but Lawrence has always been the guy start to finish. That in itself is impressive. He probably isn’t a generational prospect, but I’d take him over Joe Burrow. Urban Meyer gets to start his NFL career with a QB to build around. Not bad.
2. NYJ – Zach Wilson/QB BYU: Wilson’s felt locked into this spot for a couple weeks now. His fearlessness might be his best — and sometimes, worst — trait, but the Jets need a QB and Wilson meshes well with the off-script nature of the game’s top quarterbacks. Once Sam Darnold was shipped to Carolina, he became the guy.
3. SF – Trey Lance/QB North Dakota State: This is where the draft begins. The 49ers are going quarterback. The question is who. Mac Jones is the most often mocked pick here, but I think Lance has been the sleeper all along. He definitely needs to sit for a season after barely playing in college and working in a run-heavy offense. But the 49ers can afford him that time spending a season behind Jimmy Garoppolo.
4. ATL – Justin Fields/QB Ohio State: The Falcons may need help on defense, but the top of the class on that side of the ball isn’t strong. Value simply wins out here, and the chance to get a franchise QB is too good to pass up. Combination of a strong class and the Falcons having a top five pick, something that isn’t guaranteed with a decent team and Matt Ryan at QB, makes Fields the guy. He’ll of course sit for at least a season behind Ryan.
5. CIN – Kyle Pitts/TE Florida: Could definitely go wide receiver or offensive line here. But the Bengals have two good of the former in Tyler Boyd and Tee Higgins and signed Riley Reiff to play RT with Jonah Williams opposite. Depth at wideout and the line is strong. There’s only one tight end in this class with Pitts’ skillset, and still provides a big-time weapon for Joe Burrow. Good luck to defenses trying to stop he and Boyd over the middle of the field, Boyd on underneath option routes, Pitts stretching the field vertically. He can line up isolated as the X receiver, too.
6. MIA – Ja’Marr Chase/WR LSU: Trendy to go with an Alabama receiver with Tua on the roster, but Chase is simply the best receiver in this class despite not playing in 2020. Dolphins making heavy investments to build an offense that can compete with the Buffalo Bills. Chase had an absurd 2020 season: 84 receptions for 1,780 yards (21.2 average) and 20 TDs. Video game stuff.
7. DET – Rashawn Slater/OT Northwestern: A surprise here with Slater hopping Sewell. But Slater has more experience at right tackle than Sewell does, and that’s what the Lions are looking to fill. Slater has remained one of the class’ top prospects basically since last season. He could move to guard, but the Lions would be wise to start him at tackle. A little lack of length doesn’t mean he has to kick inside. Plenty of top offensive tackles have average to below average length.
8. CAR – Penei Sewell/OT Oregon: Panthers could go a couple of ways here with O-line or wide receiver. But Sewell is a great athlete, just 20 years old, and could be Matt Rhule’s franchise tackle. The Panthers may have signed Cameron Erving, but that wouldn’t prevent them from passing up on a talent like Sewell.
9. DEN – Micah Parsons/ILB Penn State: The first defensive player taken in the draft creeps into the top 10. Parsons would be a strong fit in Vic Fangio’s scheme. There’s some off-field questions, and though Parsons is a great athlete, his coverage skills are raw, but the upside here is massive. At 6’3″, 246, he ran a 4.36 at his Pro Day. You don’t pass up on that guy. QB Mac Jones is an option, but I think the team gives Drew Lock one more year.
10. DAL – Jaycee Horn/CB South Carolina: Big debate here if it’ll be Horn or Patrick Surtain II. The latter felt like the favorite throughout most of the draft process. But Horn’s confidence and swagger will endear himself to Jerry Jones and the Cowboys’ staff. Playing corner is so mental, you have to believe you’re the best guy. But either choice would make sense for a Dallas defense that was torched a year ago — 28th-most points allowed and the 27th-most passing TDs, despite having the second fewest pass attempts against in 2020.
11. NYG – Kwity Paye/EDGE Michigan: One of the more underrated first round picks in the class, the Giants get a top pass rusher in this relatively weak class. Paye’s numbers in school weren’t gaudy (11.5 career sacks, more than two in a season just once) but he wasn’t always allowed to rush freely in the Wolverines’ scheme. He’ll replace Markus Golden, traded back to the Cardinals.
12. PHI – DeVonta Smith/WR Alabama: Tough choice here between the top receivers and corners like Patrick Surtain II. But Smith grades out higher and the Eagles go all-in on surrounding Jalen Hurts with as much talent as possible to make him an NFL success and justify trading away Carson Wentz. Smith’s weight is the primary concern, but it didn’t stop him from dominating college football. Though different types of wide receiver, Desean Jackson was a lanky receiver who had sustained success.
13. LAC – Patrick Surtain II/CB Alabama: Offensive tackle is a strong consideration here, but the Chargers can find a tackle in Round 2 in a pretty deep class. Hard to find a potentially shutdown guy like Surtain who has the size (6’2″, 208) and athleticism (4.42 40) to be an impressive man corner. He also has the production, bloodlines, and played in college football’s best conference. Not much to dislike here.
14. MIN – Christian Darrisaw/OT Virginia Tech: Left tackle is a big need after watching Riley Reiff leave. Darrisaw has great size and good athleticism and could even go a couple spots higher. But this is a great spot for him. He’s started 22 games over the past two years for the Hokies.
15. NE – Mac Jones/QB Alabama: In reality, someone is probably trading up for Jones. Maybe the Pats. But I’m not predicting trades here. And Jones would be a great fit as a smart signal caller for Bill Belichick. He has great accuracy and ability to hit receivers in stride. There were some maturity concerns with him early in his college career, including a DUI, but he’s seemed to have grown up and embraced his leadership role. Belichick and Nick Saban are close, and you know Saban is raving about this guy to Belichick.
16. ARI – Elijah Moore/WR Ole Miss: Moore isn’t conventionally the highest-rated receiver remaining, but might be the best RAC threat in the league. And that’s going to appeal to someone like HC Kliff Kingsbury. Potential RPO threat taking slants and digs and running to daylight. Meshes well with DeAndre Hopkins and to a far lesser extent, A.J. Green, who will be a 50/50 ball downfield threat in this offense.
17. LVR – Teven Jenkins/OT Oklahoma State: You know Jon Gruden and Mike Mayock love a guy like Jenkins. Junkyard dog and the most physical and nasty offensive linemen in the draft. The Raiders are totally revamping their offensive line and could bookend Kolton Miller, whose growth has been exponential, with Jenkins. Defense might be the side of the ball that needs more help, but the Raiders aren’t afraid to get their guys.
18. MIA – Alijah Vera-Tucker/OG USC: This feels like the lower end of things for Vera-Tucker, the first round pick arguably flying under the radar more than any other guy He played tackle in school but will kick to guard in the NFL and probably play alongside 2020 first round pick Austin Jackson. Dolphins making huge moves to change their offense.
19. WFT – Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah/LB Notre Dame: JOK’s stock is a little difficult to predict. But he’s a super-athlete and despite being a senior, is only 21 years old. With that great Washington defensive line, JOK will be able to play clean and run and hit. His extreme athleticism also allows him to play as an overhang defender and see some work in the slot, even if he’s not a full-time guy there.
20. CHI – Jaylen Waddle/WR Alabama: The Bears feeling fortunate to see Waddle slip this far. The team is rumored to be dangling Anthony Miller for a trade while Allen Robinson is playing on the tag. If Andy Dalton is going to be your starting quarterback, you might as well hand him some big-time weapons.
21. IND – Caleb Farley/CB Virginia Tech: Board didn’t break great for the Colts, who don’t have an obvious choice at offensive tackle here. Farley is a long, talented corner but has some clear red flags. He didn’t play in 2020 and has a history of back injuries that didn’t allow him to workout during the pre-draft process. But he has the size GM Chris Ballard looks for and if he’s healthy, this could be a steal.
22. TEN – Kadarius Toney/WR Florida: Toney is a fun slot receiver and one of the most elusive guys in this class. A.J. Brown and Josh Reynolds are the Titans’ outside receivers, and Toney can fit well in the slot. His middle of the field presence, to an extent, helps mitigate the loss of Jonnu Smith. Not from a size standpoint, but it keeps that real estate open for QB Ryan Tannehill.
23. NYJ – Najee Harris/RB Alabama: Another Bama player off the board. Jets have so many needs that going running back might not make sense here. But it is a need, and Robert Salah is going to win the battle in the trenches with a power back. Zach Wilson had his best season in 2020 with BYU having a top-15 rushing attack in college football. Harris is a tough, three-down back with great hands.
24. PIT – Alex Leatherwood/OT Alabama: Second time in this mock back-to-back Bama players have been selected. Harris might be the Steelers’ guy, but he’s off the board. Leatherwood has experience at tackle and guard but will play LT in Pittsburgh. He needs to work on his punch and hand use, but he’s a nasty run blocker that fits what the Steelers are looking for.
25. JAC – Trevon Moehrig/S TCU: The top safety in a below-average class. Moehrig has great range and had a productive career, leaving the Horned Frogs with seven interceptions. Jacksonville doesn’t have much at safety, so getting the top guy makes a lot of sense.
26. CLE – Jaelan Phillips/DE Miami (FL): Came down to Phillips vs. DT Christian Barmore, but Phillips has higher upside. Browns signed Jadeveon Clowney but it was just to a one-year deal. Phillips might be the most talented pass rusher in this class but has a scary history of concussions that forced him to medically retire from UCLA before sitting out a year and transferring to The U. But the Browns don’t have major holes on this roster and can roll the dice late in the first round.
27. BAL- Asante Samuel Jr./CB Florida State: Samuel Jr. brings bloodlines as an impressive zone corner who played on the outside in school, but with average size and below average length, probably makes the move to the slot. He’s a better and more aggressive tackler than his dad was. Tavon Young played well for the Ravens, but he’s been limited to just two games the last two seasons.
28. NO – Christian Barmore/DT Alabama: Honing in on value here. Barmore could go 10 spots higher, especially in such a weak class. He’s a bit of a polarizing player but he had a strong 2020 season, racking up eight sacks. Just a redshirt sophomore, there’s still lots of room to grow. He’ll replace Malcolm Brown, dealt to the Jags because of the Saints’ terrible cap situation.
29. GB – Jamin Davis/ILB Kentucky: One of the largest risers in this class, Davis is a freaky off-ball linebacker who jumped over 40 inches at his Pro Day. Curiously, he was just a one-year starter but made the year count, picking up 102 tackles and three interceptions in just 10 games for the Wildcats.
30. BUF – Jayson Oweh/DE Penn State: Bills and DC Leslie Frazier swinging for the fences with this one. Oweh, like his teammate Parsons, is one of the draft’s freakiest players. But he’s raw, as evident by his zero sack 2020 season. He did have five sacks in 2019, but he’s an unrefined pass rusher with boom/bust potential. The Bills have a great coaching staff and need pass rush help; no one on that team finished with more than five sacks a year ago. Great chance they can mold Oweh’s game.
31. BAL – Rashod Bateman/WR Minnesota: Great slot receiver with great production in 2019 before falling off a bit in 2020, though a battle with COVID can explain a lot of that. He bounced back with a strong showing at his Pro Day. The Ravens were looking for a slot receiver, nearly signing JuJu Smith-Schuster, before settling on Sammy Watkins as a home run threat. But that won’t stop them from taking a guy like Bateman. Offensive tackle is also an option after trading away Orlando Brown Jr., but they can find an option later in the draft.
32. TB – Carlos Basham Jr./DE Wake Forest: The Super Bowl-winning Bucs did a tremendous job keeping the band together and losing almost none of their free agents. So there aren’t a lot of needs here. But teams can always look to add some pass rush juice. Basham lacks a tremendously high ceiling but is a big body (6’3″, 274) and refined pass rusher who can rotate in right away. Had 19.5 career sacks for the Demon Deacons.
33. JAC – Travis Etienne/RB Clemson: This might seem like a surprise selection considering how impressive then-rookie James Robinson was in 2020. But GM Trent Baalke seemed receptive to the idea of adding another running back and looking for a dynamic type to pair with Robinson. Etienne is that guy, the second back off the board despite a down senior season. He has the best contact balance in the class and has proven himself to be an accomplished receiver.
34. NYJ – Greg Newsome/CB Northwestern: Really good value here for the Jets by nabbing Newsome, who could be a mid-late first round pick. His lack of production and resume drops him into Day Two having played just 17 career games with 15 career starts. But he has plus ball skills, breaking up more than one pass per game with the Wildcats. Jets desperately need to add to their defense and do so after spending both first round picks on offense.
35. ATL – Joe Tryon/EDGE Washington: Tryon has sneaky first-round potential but slips into Day Two after opting out of the 2020 season. But his 2019 campaign was excellent, posting 12.5 TFL and 10.5 sacks. The Falcons need a better pass rush and have missed on Vic Beasley and Takk McKinley. As a defense, they’ve been held to under 30 sacks for the past two seasons.
36. MIA – Zaven Collins/ILB Tulsa: Like the Jets, Miami taking a swing on defense after addressing offense. Good replacement for Kyle Van Noy. Collins is best as an off-ball linebacker but can line up on the edge. He’s also a rare body type at 270 pounds. He’s not quite as physical but has the look of someone like Don’t’a Hightower, who Brian Flores had in New England before taking the head coaching job with Miami.
37. PHI – Creed Humphrey/C Oklahoma: Hard to ignore the best center in the draft here in the second round. Jason Kelce is entering his 84th year with the Eagles but he’s 34 and may not play out his contract through 2022. Humphrey could potentially see time at guard before moving to center. He’s perhaps not as fleet of foot as Kelce in open space but Humphrey is explosive off the ball and tested at a historically good level. He’s also one of the strongest linemen in the class and possesses good size. Jalen Hurts is getting all his old teammates back.
38. CIN – Wyatt Davis/OG Ohio State: The first true guard of the draft. This keeps Jonah Williams at RT and potentially allows Davis to be a Day One starter at guard. The Bengals have made strides to improve their offensive line and Davis, a local native, would be yet another step. This protects Joe Burrow and gives running room for Joe Mixon.
39. CAR – Rondale Moore/WR Purdue: A seamless fit after the Panthers lost Curtis Samuel to Washington. Moore is small but pound for pound, one of the strongest players in the draft and can squat 400 pounds. He burst onto the scene as a freshman in 2018, winning the Paul Hornug Award as college football’s most versatile player. Injuries slowed him down since but he’s electric as a space player if you can manufacture touches, which Rhule should be able to do.
40. DEN – Azeez Ojulari/EDGE Georgia: Good value here for arguably the best EDGE in the class. Ojulari is a little undersized but sets the edge well in the run game. Malik Reed filled in well for Von Miller last year but Miller is 32 and entering the final year of his deal. Two big pieces for the front seven for the Broncos in this draft.
41. DET – Nico Collins/WR Michigan: Big, downfield receiving threat to compensate for the loss of Kenny Golladay. Collins dealt with poor quarterback play during his time with the Wolverines but still averaged 19.7 yards per catch and seven touchdowns in 2019 before sitting out the 2020 season. Great triangle numbers, running 4.45, jumping 37.5 inches, and turning in a 6.79 three cone at 6’4, 215 pounds.
42. NYG – Trey Smith/OG Tennessee: Maybe a little high here but the Giants love drafting big offensive linemen. Smith fits the bill at 6054, 321 pounds with 33 3/4 inch arms. He also has great feet for a man of his size. New York loading up the offensive line to improve the run game with Saquon Barkley returning after missing most of 2020.
43. SF – Eric Stokes/CB Georgia: Stokes is one of several Bulldogs’ DBs in this draft class. He’ll battle teammate Tyson Campbell for first man off the field. A great athlete with good size, he picked off four passes this past season, returning two for scores. Jason Verrett was rewarded with a new contract but it’s hard to trust he’ll stay healthy.
44. DAL – Jabril Cox/LB LSU: After missing out on some of the top athletic off-ball linebackers in this class, the Cowboys turn to Jabril Cox. At 233 pounds, he didn’t get to workout at his school’s Pro Day but made plays at all levels of the field as a senior. 65 tackles, 6.5 for a loss, with five pass breakups and three interceptions. Dallas adding as much defensive help as possible.
45. JAC – Pat Freiermuth/TE Penn State: Already the Jaguars’ fourth draft pick in the top 50. Not a bad way to begin rebuilding a team. Freiermuth is the second best tight end in this class. Athletically, he shows limitations and doesn’t create much separation but he’s tough with a reliable pair of hands. Trevor Lawrence gets a security blanket, though rookie tight ends rarely are productive out of the gate.
46. NE – Terrace Marshall/WR LSU: Deep wide receiver class gives the Patriots plenty of options in the middle of the second round. St. Marshall was overshadowed by Chase in 2019 but had a strong 2020, besting his ’19 numbers despite playing in fewer games. The Pats need some more weapons after loading up on tight end in free agency with Jonnu Smith and Hunter Henry.
47. LAC – Samuel Cosmi/OT Texas: Day Two tackles slipping a little bit further than expected. Cosmi is a strong athlete and simply got the job done at Texas but he’ll need to show more consistency and more refined technique. The Chargers are high on Trey Pipkins to play left tackle but Pipkins is unproven with just eight starts in two years.
48. LVR – Dayvion Nixon/DT Iowa: After the surprise release of Maurice Hurst, the Raiders look for some help in the trenches. Nixon has just one year of production but did well for the Hawkeyes in 2020. 13..5 tackles for loss and 5.5 sacks in just eight games. He also had a 71 yard pick six to seal a win over Penn State.
49. ARI – Richie Grant/SS Central Florida: Grant would make for a great safety next to Budda Baker. Grant’s stock rose with an impressive Senior Bowl week and he’s part of a deep DB class of UCF guys. But Grant is the best and a downhill missile.
50. MIA – Javonte Williams/RB North Carolina: The last of the “Big Three” running backs still on the board. The Dolphins didn’t do much to add to the position in free agency only signing Malcolm Brown. Williams is a bowling ball while growing as a receiver and blocker.
51. WFT – Walker Little/OT Stanford: Washington is still looking to replace Trent Williams. Geron Christian, who started just two games last year, isn’t someone to bank on as the answer. Little has first round talent and probably would’ve been picked there but he’s hardly played the last two years. He suffered a leg injury in Week One of 2019, missing the rest of the year, then opted out of 2020.
52. CHI – Kellen Mond/QB Texas A&M: The Bears are looking for win-now help but they have to think about the future too, especially at QB. Andy Dalton is 34 and his contract will void after the season. Mond becomes the sixth QB off the board. He has the most experience in this class and might be better used in the NFL than Jimbo Fisher’s more rigid offense.
53. TEN – Liam Eichenberg/OT Notre Dame: Eichenberg started all 37 games of his Fighting Irish career at left tackle but could flip to the right side in the pros. He’s a good technician and a better athlete than given credit for. Also seems mature and Day One ready after the team missed on last year’s first round pick Isaiah Wilson.
54. IND – Gregory Rousseau/DE Miami (FL): Rousseau could’ve gone 30-40 spots higher had he not struggled athletically at his Pro Day. But two years ago, he was one of the league’s fiercest pass rushers with 19.5 TFL and 15.5 sacks. Justin Houston remains a free agent and the Colts didn’t add much in free agency aside from Isaac Rochell, whose more of a run-stopper.
55. PIT – Landon Dickerson/C Alabama: The Steelers take their second Bama offensive linemen in their effort to totally revamp the front five. Dickerson has Day One talent but a long medical history with two torn ACLs and two ankle surgeries. The second round offsets some of that risk. And assuming he’s medically cleared, he probably starts Day One, replacing Maurkice Pouncey.
56. SEA –Milton Williams/DT La Tech: Seattle makes their first pick of the draft. Pete Carroll’s never been one to go off the beaten path with their draft picks. Williams is a sleeper and one of the most explosive interior linemen in this class. 38.5 inch vertical and 6.96 three cone at 284 pounds is elite testing. The Seahawks are thin in the middle and Williams will slide next to Poona Ford.
57. LAR – Brady Christensen/OG BYU: Christiensen played tackle in school but could move to guard with the Rams. LA doesn’t quite run as much zone as the previous few years but he’s still a strong scheme fit, a great combination of size and athleticism. Like the Seahawks, the Rams are turning in the card for the first time this draft.
58. KC – Tyson Campbell/CB Georgia: The second Georgia DB to go in this round. Chiefs looking to add secondary help. Their corner room doesn’t look that strong. Campbell weighed in at 6’1, 193 at his Pro Day and tested as an above average corner.
59. CLE – Levi Onwuzurike/DT Washington: Like so many other PAC-12 players, Onwuzurike didn’t play in 2020 but is one of the better defensive tackles in a weak class. He’ll replace Sheldon Richardson, released as a cap casualty. The Browns are looking to have one of the top defensive lines in football.
60. NO – Aaron Robinson/CB Central Florida: Slot corner for the Saints who had just an average pass defense last season. Robinson goes 5116, 186 pounds and ran in the 4.3’s at his Pro Day. He wasn’t a playmaker, though, with just one career INT.
61. BUF – Kenneth Gainwell/RB Memphis: Not a lot of need for an impressive Bills’ roster. They’ve been open about finding a home run hitter in the backfield. Gainwell is a bit of a linear runner but showed big play ability in 2019 before opting out of 2020. He’s also an accomplished receiver, catching 51 balls two years ago.
62. GB – Quinn Meinerz/OG Wisconsin-Whitewater: Meinerz, star of the Senior Bowl, stays local.. Despite sitting out of 2020, he dominated Power 5 players in Mobile, and is one of the strongest and nastiest linemen in the draft. He could look to play center or guard, the latter his natural position, depending on what the team decides to do with Elgton Jenkins.
63. KC – Jalen Mayfield/OT Michigan: Good value here at the end of the second round. Mayfield is young, still 20, and doesn’t have a lot of starting experience. But the Chiefs can try him at right tackle or start Mike Remmers for another year. Focus for KC is on protecting Patrick Mahomes even after dealing for Orlando Brown Jr, who will be their left tackle.
64. TB – Davis Mills/QB Stanford: A quarterback to close out the end of Round Two. Without many needs, the Bucs have the luxury to look towards the future with Mills, whose flashed really impressive play. But his lack of starting experience and injury history push him down.
65. JAC – Josh Myers/C Ohio State: Rumor is Urban Meyer wants to draft Myers with their Ohio State connection. Myers has great size to play center or guard and moves well for his size. The Andrew Norwell signing has not worked out well for Jacksonville.
66. NYJ – Anthony Schwartz/WR Auburn: This is too high for my tastes but there’s no denying Schwartz is among the fastest players in the class. Maybe the fastest. He’s the first player to be disappointed in running *only* a 4.27. His game is a limited outside of that but his speed will replace what Robby Anderson brought to Carolina. And it’ll pair well with Zach Wilson’s arm.
67. HOU – Nick Bolton/LB Missouri: Welcome to the draft, Houston. Playing the value game with needs all over the place. Bolton has a chance to be a top 40 pick but the dubious combination of lacking size and speed moves him to the top of round three. He’s probably not a three-down player though but can replace Benardrick Mckinney’s role as a thumper. Bolton’s recorded nearly 200 tackles over 2019-2020.
68. ATL – Jevon Holland/S Oregon: Falcons really need help at safety. Holland can function as a slot corner too but he’ll probably play center field in Atlanta. Holland picked off nine total passes as a freshman and sophomore before opting out in 2020 and declaring. Strong value here. The only concern is taking two players in Tryon and Holland who didn’t play last season.
69. CIN – Joseph Ossai/DE Texas: Bengals add pass rush help after losing Carl Lawson to the Jets. Ossai didn’t put up big sack numbers in school but he’ll fit well as an explosive weakside end in Cincinnati’s scheme. The Bengals had a pathetic 17 sacks a year ago.
70. PHI – Baron Browning/LB Ohio State: Eagles adding speed on defense with Browning. His production was underwhelming but he played along with several impressive LBs. Guys like Tuf Borland and Peter Werner. The Eagles bet on his upside with this selection.
71. DEN – Spencer Brown/OT Northern Iowa: Brown possesses a rare blend of size and athleticism (6082, 311 pounds with a 6.96 three cone), testing as one of the most athletic offensive tackles in draft history. His Senior Bowl offered mixed results and he didn’t play in 2020 but he’s a lump of clay for Mike Munchak to mold.
72. DET – Kelvin Joseph/CB Kentucky: The Lions drafted Jeff Okudah last year. Now they look for someone to play opposite him. Joseph is an underrated name in a good class of corners. An LSU transfer, he picked off four passes in 2020, returning one into the end zone. Detroit had one of the worst pass defenses last season.
73. CAR – Andre Cisco/S Syracuse: Corner is less of a need after the team signed AJ Bouye. Safety still remains high on the list. Cisco will play next to Jeremy Chinn coming off a very impressive rookie season. Cisco has good size at 6005, 216.
74. WFT – Dyami Brown/WR North Carolina: Nice value here for Washington to get Brown here. He could go 30 spots higher. Brown’s an inconsistent player but he and Scary Terry will put the fear in defenses on the outside with Curtis Samuel in the slot and RPO game. Brown averaged 20+ yards per catch his last two years. Not many receivers doing that.
75. DAL – Jackson Carman/OG Clemson: Have Carman listed at guard but he played left tackle for the Tigers. A little lack of size/length kicks him inside. But he’s an explosive athlete and could provide depth at multiple spots. The Cowboys protect themselves after suffering so many injuries up front a year ago.
76. NYG – Marvin Wilson/DT Florida State: Taking one of the better interior defensive linemen left on the board. Wilson shows plus hand use for a man of his size but did not test well during his Pro Day workout. The Giants have been among the leaders in investing in its defensive line and they do so with the additions of Paye and Wilson.
77. LAC – Ifeatu Melifonwu/CB Syracuse: Melifonwu hoping to carve out a better career than his older brother. He has great size and athleticism with 19 career breakups and three interceptions. Worthwhile upside flier in the third round for the Chargers, who need corner help.
78. MIN – Payton Turner/DE Houston: Turner doesn’t have a sky-high ceiling but shows tremendous bend for a 270 pounders. He stays disengaged from blocks and runs to the ball. Fits well as a strong-side end opposite Danielle Hunter.
79. LVR – Derrick Barnes/LB Purdue: Sleeper prospect whose risen through the pre-draft process. Combination of good size and athleticism. Played more EDGE in 2019 before moving to an off-ball role in 2020. Raiders need help at linebacker.
80. LVR – Elijah Molden/CB Washington: Molden is among the more physical slot corners in the draft but his stocked took a hit after an average to below average Pro Day workout. He’ll compete with Amik Robertson for nickel duties.
81. MIA – Hamsah Nasirildeen/S Florida State: Versatile safety who bounced back from a torn ACL in 2019. Good depth here for the Dolphins as they’ve done well to address their biggest needs already in the draft.
82. WFT – Shaun Wade/CB Ohio State: Big run on the secondary these last several picks. Wade had a terrible 2020, struggling as an outside corner while battling a turf toe injury. His best home comes in the slot, where he’ll play here, and he bounced back with an impressive pre-draft workout, running in the 4.4’s.
83. CHI – Dillon Radunz/OT North Dakota State: Pretty good value for the Bears snagging Radunz in the mid-third round. Radunz impressed at the Senior Bowl, has a little bit of guard potential, though he’ll need a year to get stronger. Similar to Ezra Cleveland of Boise State last season. He could replace Charles Leno next season. Leno’s contract voids after the year.
84. PHI – Michael Carter/RB North Carolina: Another value pick. Carter could go in the second round but slips a bit due to a lack of size and every-down value. He’s a short but tough runner who starred alongside Javonte Williams with the Tar Heels. Carter rushed for over 1200 yards and eight yards per carry in 2020. He’ll share time with Miles Sanders.
85. TEN – Brevin Jordan/TE Miami (FL): Replacement for field stretcher Jonnu Smith, who took a big deal with the Patriots. Jordan lacks height and tested much worse than expected but on tape, he’s an athletic YAC threat who averaged over 15 yards per grab and seven scores for the Hurricanes last year.
86. NYJ – Dylan Moses/LB Alabama: Seems like every year Alabama has a high-ceiling linebacker with injury concerns. That’s Moses, who tore his ACL missing the 2019 season and played through injury in 2020. He wasn’t able to workout during the pre-draft process. But there’s less risk here in the third round and for a team making its fifth selection in the Top 100.
87. PIT – Trey Sermon/RB Ohio State: Steelers looking for a starting running back and Sermon is the top guy on the board. He’s never been the feature back in his career but showed explosiveness at Oklahoma and Ohio State, averaging over seven yards per carry each of his last two seasons.
88. LAR – Israel Mukuamu/CB South Carolina: Overshadowed by Jaycee Horn, Mukuamu is one of the most impressive looking corners in this class. 6’4, 212 pounds with 34 inch arms and good testing for the drills he went through (36.5 inch vertical, 9’11” broad). He could look really good opposite of Jalen Ramsey.
89. CLE – Pete Werner/LB Ohio State: Local kid who grew up in Indy before committing to Ohio State. Good size, physical, with consistent albeit unspectacular production year-by-year. Focus of this draft is on upgrading the Browns’ defense in as many ways possible.
90. MIN – Trill Williams/S Syracuse: Williams could play corner or safety but probably bumps to safety in Minnesota who signed Xavier Woods but it’s only a one-year contract. Williams boasts good size with some playmaking ability, famously ripping the ball out from a Wake Forest receiver’s hands to seal an OT win.
91. CLE – Aaron Banks/OG Notre Dame: Browns go offense for the first time in the draft. Standard fare offensive line depth for the Browns. Banks is a big man with light feet and gets a good push in the run game. He’s one of four ND offensive linemen who could get drafted this year and the second in this draft behind Liam Eichenberg.
92. GB – D’Wayne Eskridge/WR Western Michigan: Eskridge could go a round higher and the Packers are reportedly interested. A faster version of Diontae Johnson, Eskridge ran 4.40 at his Pro Day and has strong RAC ability. Also carries special teams value as a returner and gunner. Aaron Rodgers gets a new weapon at wideout.
93. BUF – Tommy Tremble/TE Notre Dame: The Bills hit on Dawson Knox but he’s had injury issues missing time in both his first two seasons. Depth here is poor. 7th round pick Tommey Sweeney is expected to play in 2021 but missed his 2020 with a medical issue. Tremble is still only 20 years old and his best football is ahead of him. He’s arguably the best blocker of the early-round tight ends.
94. BAL – Stone Forsythe/OT Florida: Ravens waiting a little bit longer to address the hole left by the Orlando Brown Jr. trade but they get a similarly wide-body in Forsythe, who stands in at 6’8. Most of his experience has come at left tackle though so he’ll have to adjust flipping spots.
95. TB – Jay Tufele/DT USC: Not many needs for the Bucs and we’re still in Day Two of the draft. Tufele is good depth behind Ndamukong Suh who was brought back and has proven to be extremely durable (he’s missed just two games his entire career) but he signed just a one-year deal and will be 35 heading into 2022.
96. NE – Osa Odighizuwa/DT USC: Short but stout offensive linemen who uses his size to create natural leverage. Versatile and can play up and down in the line in the Patriots’ hybrid front. NFL bloodlines too but doesn’t have the injury concerns of his older brother Owa.
97. LAC – Hunter Long/TE Boston College: Tight end class is pretty shallow so the Chargers jump on the chance to replace Hunter Henry, though Long isn’t nearly the athlete. He’s a well-rounded tight end with good hands but doesn’t excel in any one area. Long can play behind Jared Cook for at least a season and has a Kyle Rudolph ceiling.
98. NO – Amon-Ra St. Brown/WR USC: Rocked up, tough slot receiver who will never be a number one but isn’t required to be with Michael Thomas the #1 receiver looking for a bounce-back season. St. Brown found the end zone quite a bit in 2020. Seven trips on 41 catches.
99. DAL – Jonathan Cooper/DE Ohio State: This is higher than where people project and predict he’ll go. But Cooper impressed at the Senior Bowl and his issue hasn’t been talent. It’s health. Cooper has just ten career sacks but flashes great hand use and ability to stay clean as a pass rusher. In a pass rush class that isn’t strong, teams boards will be all over the map and the Cowboys will bet on his health.
100. TEN – Paulson Adebo/CB Stanford: Corner is a pretty big need for the Titans and could be addressed earlier. Adebo is a long corner comfortable in off-man coverage and ballhawk in 2018 and 2019, picking off four passes in each season. He didn’t play in 2020.
101. DET – Khyiris Tonga/DT BYU: Big defensive linemen who plays with a lot of power and should endear himself to new head coach Dan Campbell. Tonga’s an underrated name and like pass rush, in a weak defensive line class, there will be some surprise picks. Tonga sneaks into Day Two.
102. SF – Ben Cleveland/OG Georgia: Hulking guard at 6’6, 334 pounds with nearly 34 inch levers. The 49ers like having big guys up front with Trent Williams, Laken Tomlinson, and Alex Mack is pretty big for center. I like Cleveland more than I did Solomon Kindley, a 5th round pick of the Dolphins a year ago.
103. LAR – Tyler Shelvin/NT LSU: Big plugger up front, a good ying to Aaron Donald’s yang. Shelvin opted out of the 2020 season and doesn’t have big numbers but isn’t expected to have high production for the role he played in college and the one he’ll hold in the NFL.
104. BAL – David Moore/OG Grambling: Small school sleeper with great strength and did well at the Senior Bowl. Powerful run blocker who will fit in well with the Ravens’ offense. They’re still searching for the man to replace Marshal Yanda. Maybe Moore is the guy.
105. NO – Cameron McGrone/LB Michigan: Plus athlete who had 65 tackles (nine for a loss) as a sophomore in 2019. The Big Ten postponement limited him to just five games last year but he averaged over five tackles a game. Redshirt sophomore who isn’t done growing yet.
106. JAC – Amari Rodgers/WR Clemson: Strong pick to kick off Day Three. Jaguars have a lot of needs but also a lot of picks and I’d expect Urban Meyer to make a trade up by this point. Rodgers is a tough slot receiver but also used on jet sweeps and gadget plays. He has NFL bloodlines too. His father was former Tennessee and NFL QB Tee Martin. Also a familiar face for Lawrence to work with, which I always think is beneficial for a franchise QB.
107. NYJ – Adrian Ealy/OT Oklahoma: Offensive tackle could be addressed earlier than the fourth round but the Jets have a lot of holes to fill. Mekhi Becton looks like a stud of a pick but they could use help on the other side. Ealy played right tackle for all but one start in school. He’s raw and plays high but is a mauler in the run game.
108. ATL – Robert Hainsey/OG Notre Dame: Classic overachiever. Tough guy, captain, and a very technical player. Primarily played right tackle in school but will kick inside in the NFL and got plenty of work at center during the Senior Bowl. Falcons have made heavy, early-round investments in their offensive line the past few years but the depth here isn’t great.
109. HOU – Tylan Wallace/WR Oklahoma State: Only the second pick of the draft for the Texans. Wallace could go higher than this but gets pushed down in a pretty deep receiver class. Wallace had a big 2018 season, over 1400 yards with 12 TDs, but wasn’t able to replicate those numbers his final two years. But he shows big-play ability by averaging over 16 yards per grab in school. Eases the loss of Will Fuller who defected to Miami.
110. CLE – Benjamin St-Juste/CB Minnesota: St-Juste might be a bit of a project but is among the biggest corners in this class at 6’3, 202 pounds. Greedy Williams has dealt with injuries to start his career and adding cornerback depth is never a bad thing.
111. CIN – Seth Williams/WR Auburn: Nice value snag for the Bengals. Williams will play on the outside bookending Tee Higgins. He caught 47 passes a season ago and average over 20 yards per grab as a freshman. Explosion numbers were good at his Pro Day but his agility times highlighted some stiffness in his game.
112. DET – Jamar Johnson/S Indiana: Johnson’s flying under the radar because he doesn’t come from a football school. But there’s a chance he goes Day Two. Johnson goes 5117, 205 and picked off four passes in just eight games for the Hoosiers in 2020. Lions never adequately replaced Glover Quinn.
113. CAR – Deonte Brown/OG Alabama: Brown is one of the biggest players in this draft at 344 pounds. But he lacks length and keeping his weight down has been a concern. On tape, I didn’t see the fierce run blocker I expected. But he’s good depth and a borderline rookie starter for the Panthers who will compete with Pat Elflein, brought over from the Jets.
114. DEN – Khalil Herbert/RB Virginia Tech: Depth here behind Melvin Gordon after they changed their mind about tendering Phillip Lindsay. Royce Freeman is entering the last year of his rookie deal. Herbert was a fifth year senior who transferred from Kansas to average nearly eight yards per carry for the Hokies in 2020. He also did a good job as a kick returner, though the Broncos have Diontae Spencer currently handling those duties.
115. DAL – Ar’Darius Washington/S TCU: More defensive help for the Cowboys. Washington is tiny at 5’8 and sub-180 pounds but he packs a punch and shows range as a single high, post safety. He can also come down and also play over the slot.
116. NYG – Chuba Hubbard/RB Oklahoma State: Barkley returns as the lead back but with Wayne Gallman gone, the Giants look for depth after experiencing the pain of losing their best player. Hubbard runs in a line and his stock fell in 2020 after rushing for over 2000 yards as a sophomore in 2019. But this is good value.
117. SF – Simi Fehoko/WR Stanford: Height/weight/speed guy with drop issues in school who never put it all together, though his QB play didn’t help him. Potential field stretcher in this offense for Lance to chuck it downfield too while Deebo Samuel and Brandon Aiyuk do damage underneath. At 222 pounds, he ran a 4.44 at his Pro Day.
118. LAC – Ronnie Perkins/EDGE Oklahoma: Perkins unfortunately suffers a bit of a fall. He honestly could go in the second round. Lack of size and bulk may hurt him a bit but he’s a bendy pass rusher with steady production in school. Between five and 6.5 sacks in all three seasons at Norman.
119. MIN – Kyle Trask/QB Florida: Trask falls a bit here but his upside isn’t tremendously high and I compare him to at best, the next Nick Foles. Trask lacks the mobility and big arm the NFL looks for. But he was highly productive in Florida, has always overcome the odds (he didn’t even start for his high school team. There is a little bit of Kirk Cousins in his game and the Vikings don’t have a Plan B for if he goes down.
120. NE – Kendrick Green/OG Illinois: Underrated center/guard who has a similar build to Shaq Mason. Short but strong, Green is a good athlete and will offer versatile, interior depth for the Patriots. Green made 33 career starts in school.
121. LVR – Justin Hilliard/LB Ohio State: Hilliard has first round talent but injury after injury slowed him down in school, not to mention playing on a team with so many good off-ball linebackers. Hilliard could be a steal and the Raiders took a chance on Maurice Hurst who also had medical concerns coming out.
122. NE – Darrick Forrest Jr./S Cincinnati: One of two Bearcats’ safeties expected to be drafted. Forrest was a late riser in this process, putting on an impressive Pro Day workout with a 4.43 40 and 39 inch vertical while repping 225 an impressive 21 times.
123. PHI – Divine Deablo/S Virginia Tech: Deable is a safety/linebacker hybrid, a hopeful upgrade over someone like Nate Geary who never quite pulled off the transition. After beginning his career as a wide receiver, he flipped to defense but showed those wideout hands with four picks as a senior.
124. WFT – Kenny Yeboah/TE Ole Miss: Replacing the retired Jordan Reed. Yeboah is a receiving tight end though he isn’t particularly dynamic. He has length and size but needs to work on his blocking.
125. MIN – John Bates/TE Boise State: Back-to-back tight ends. Bates is the opposite of Yeboah. Much more of a traditional, in-line tight end. Showed some receiving skills at the Senior Bowl but he’s being drafted for his blocking and underrated special teams ability. Should be able to cover kicks and punts from Day One. Not something most tight ends are capable of doing.
126. TEN – Alim McNeill/DT NC State: Titans adding help to their interior defensive line. McNeill is a sleeper in a weak class. Extremely strong, he finished his three-year, Wolfpack career with ten sacks. Only one of those came last year, however.
127. IND – Alaric Jackson/OT Iowa: Colts making their first pick in quite some time. Ballard looks to replace Anthony Castanzo. Jackson played exclusively at left tackle during his time with the Hawkeyes.
128. PIT – Robert Rochell/CB Central Arkansas: Impressive small-school corner who got to play a lot of football in 2020. He played on the outside in school but may kick to the slot in the NFL, replacing Mike Hilton. Steelers attended his Pro Day where Rochell posted an excellent workout.
129. SEA – Kary Vincent Jr./CB LSU: A track star, Vincent Jr. didn’t play for the Tigers in 2020. Vincent plays to his speed and picks off four passes in 2019. This is just Seattle’s second pick of the draft.
130. JAC – Tommy Doyle/OT Miami (OH): Hulking offensive tackle at 6’8, 308 still learning the position after playing defense through high school. Imposing, physical run blocker with right and left tackle versatility. Developmental depth for the Jaguars as they fill out their draft.
131. BAL – Caden Sterns/S Texas: Safety depth behind Chuck Clark and DeShon Elliott. Anthony Levine re-signed but he’s probably in the last year of his deal. This may be a little early for a guy like Sterns who had his best year as a freshman, picking off four passes back in 2018. He left school as a junior.
132. CLE – Dazz Newsome/WR North Carolina: Receiver isn’t a big need here but the Browns have taken care of addressing the defense with their early picks in this mock. Newsome is a shifty slot receiver with punt return ability, taking one back to the house during his Tar Heels career.
133. NO – Zach Davidson/TE Central Missouri: Super sleeper at tight end who put on a show at his Missouri Pro Day. Big body at 6’6 but a great athlete (4.64 40, 37.5 inch vertical, 6.95 three cone) who was also the team’s punter in college. The Saints weren’t afraid to take a flyer on a small schooler in Adam Trautman last year and do so again with Davidson to help replace Jared Cook.
134. MIN – Chazz Surratt/LB North Carolina: Former QB who moved to linebacker in school so he’d have a shot to make it in the NFL. Bit of an adjustment but he became a tackling machine for the Tar Heels, 206 of them over his junior and senior seasons.
135. GB – Keith Taylor/CB Washington: Taylor has the size/length like Kevin King, who the team drafted in the first round years ago (under a different regime, to be fair). Taylor has good fluidity for his size and had a nice week at the Senior Bowl.
136. BAL – Cameron Sample/EDGE Tulane: Some pass rush help to replace Matthew Judon. Ravens typically like drafting their EDGE rushers on the heavy side and Sample fits the bill at 267 pounds. Five sacks for Tulane in 11 games a year ago.
137. TB – James Hudson/OT Cincinnati: Hudson slips a bit after a pretty terrible Pro Day workout but his tape is good. Moves well in space and has room to grow as just a one-year starter. Bucs need offensive line depth across the board.
138. DAL – Jack Anderson/C Texas Tech: Anderson exclusively played right guard in school but has worked at center throughout the pre-draft process. Anderson could be depth to Tyler Biadasz as the Cowboys fortify their o-line.
139. NE – Joshua Kaindoh/EDGE Florida State: Interesting lump of clay for the Patriots to try and mold. Kaindoh is one of the biggest pass rushers to come out in recent years (6056, 260 pounds with 34.5 inch arms) but his production in school was incredibly light. But he’s a plus athlete for his frame and worth taking a flier on.
140. PIT – Quincy Roche/EDGE Miami (FL): High-productivity pass rusher with 30.5 career sacks. Career high of 13.5 of them with Temple in 2019 before transferring to Miami. Had 14.5 tackles for loss and 4.5 sacks in his lone season there. Steelers need depth at EDGE.
141. LAR – Talanoa Hufanga/S USC: Safety help to try and replace star S John Johnson who took a deal with the Browns. Hufanaga trained with Troy Polamalu in the pre-draft process. Hufanga probably will never be like Polamalu but he could be good depth. He had just 74 career tackles but picked off four passes for the Trojans in just six games last season.
142. GB – Monty Rice/ILB Georgia: Undersized off-ball linebacker but plays the run well with good hand use. SEC-tested with 130+ tackles his last two years for the Bulldogs. His production overall, though, wasn’t off the charts and he had just 10.5 career tackles for loss.
143. MIN – Cornell Powell/WR Minnesota: Sleeper wideout who took five years to break out but did so in 2020, catching 53 passes for nearly 900 yards and seven touchdowns. Plays a little bigger than his size too with long arms and big, ten-inch hands.
144. KC – Rashad Weaver/EDGE Pittsburgh: Posted impressive agility times, including a sub-7 second three cone mark but his 40 time was an ugly 4.88. Knows how to take the ball away with five forced fumbles the last two years combined.
145. JAC – Dayo Odeyingbo/DE Vanderbilt: He drops into the fifth round after suffering an Achilles tear but there’s some value here even if he needs to take a redshirt season. Jaguars traded for Malcolm Brown but this is nice depth reaching the mid-point on Day Three.
146. NYJ – Tay Gowan/CB Central Florida: Sleeper corner who has a light resume, really only playing the 2019 season after transferring from Butler Community College, and then he opted out of 2020. But Gowan has plus ball skills and a fluid turn for a six-foot corner and has serious upside. Jets double-dipping at corner here.
147. HOU – Trey Hill/C Georgia: Powerful, 320 pound center who creates a lot of movement in the run game. But he’s tried to get his weight down especially after dual knee surgeries that cut his 2020 season short. Center help for a team who released Nick Martin before free agency began.
148. ATL – Carson Green/OT Texas A&M: Impressive starting experience, 40 of them for the Aggies, with good size, length, and power. Could kick to guard but I think he has a chance to stick at tackle as the Falcons collect more depth for their front five.
149. CIN – Kylin Hill/RB Mississippi State: Didn’t play most of 2020, declaring for the draft after being stuck in Mike Leach’s pass-happy offense. But he’s an impressive receiver who actually had more receptions (23) than carries (15) in three games last season. Replacement for pass-catching back Gio Bernard, released and signed with Tampa Bay.
150. PHI – Jamie Newman/QB Wake Forest: Transferred from Wake to Georgia, didn’t win the starting job, and then opted out of the season. Then looked rusty and had a rough week at the Senior Bowl. But there’s upside here and the Eagles take a flier in the name of competition and depth at QB behind Jalen Hurts and Joe Flacco.
151. CAR – Rhamondre Stevenson/RB Oklahoma: Running back depth light after Mike Davis went to Atlanta. Stevenson is one of the heavier backs in this draft class at 231 pounds but is agile with extremely quick feet. Underrated name in a pretty good running back class.
152. DEN – Drake Jackson/C Kentucky: Depth and value game here. Jackson is far from the biggest center but a quality athlete who does well on the move and on zone runs. Interior depth for the Broncos.
153. DET – Ambry Thomas/CB Michigan: More corner help for the Lions. Thomas will play in the slot. He sat out the 2020 season but picked off three passes as a junior in 2019. Ran 4.41 and jumped 38 inches at his Wolverines’ Pro Day.
154. NYJ – Tony Poljan/TE Virginia: Transfer from Central Michigan who frequently found paydirt in college. Averaged a touchdown once every 7.1 catches his last two years. Former QB who is raw with great size but he’ll have to improve his leverage as a blocker.
155. SF – Marlon Tuipulotu/DT USC: He could go 50-75 spots higher but his role as a run plugger pushes him down a bit. 8.5 sacks over the last three seasons. Interior d-line help for the 49ers even after signing Maurice Hurst.
156. MIA – Jalen Twyman/DT Pittsburgh: Value game here. Twyman didn’t play in 2020 but had a big 2019 season, racking up 12.5 tackles for loss and 10.5 sacks. He could go a round higher than this.
157. MIN – Elijah Mitchell/RB UL-Lafayette: Dalvin Cook is the lead guy here, no doubt, but some injury protection if he gets hurt. Strong college career averaging over six yards a carry. 46 total touchdowns for the Rajun Cajuns.
158. HOU – Shemar Jean-Charles/CB Appalachian State: Sleeper corner and one of the most productive at the FBS level. 30 career pass breakups, 16 of those coming this past season. Didn’t convert many of them into interceptions though with just two on his resume. Houston needs help all over the place and doesn’t have many draft picks to work with.
159. LAC – Josh Imatorbhebhe/WR Illinois: One of the most impressive Pro Day workouts with an almost impossible to believe 46.5 inch vertical and 11’2” broad. He and Mike Williams could be a nightmare on the outside but Imatorbhebhe’s production was underwhelming for a guy with that ability. Just 57 career receptions, 55 of them after transferring from USC.
160. ARI – Landon Young/OT Kentucky: Big tackle who was a team captain and good starting experience for the Wildcats. Helped to turn around that program as part of the Big Blue Wall. Kelvin Beachum may be in his final year with the Cardinals.
161. BUF – Rodarius Williams/CB Oklahoma State: Corner depth for the Bills who could definitely use it. Only two career INTs, both coming back in 2018, who posted decent numbers at his Pro Day. At 189 pounds, he could stand to add a little bit of weight.
162. LVR – Tyree Gillespie/S Missouri: Sleeper safety to try and replace star S John Johnson who took a deal with the Browns. Gillespe ran a 4.43 at his Tigers’ Pro Day though his production in school was light, never picking off a pass in four seasons. Like his size at 207 pounds and nearly six-feet. Raiders brought in Jeff Heath and brought back Karl Joseph but they’re short-term options.
163. WFT – Patrick Jones/EDGE Pittsburgh: Productive edge rusher who will play with his hand down in the Football Team’s scheme. 17.5 sacks the last two years for the Panthers.
164. CHI – Elerson Smith/EDGE Northern Iowa: Explosive, productive small school pass rusher with a 41.5 inch vertical at his Pro Day. Could go higher than this but like the value for the Bears.
165. IND – Damar Hamlin/S Pittsburgh: Heady safety who is just an average athlete but adds depth to a Colts’ secondary with Malik Hooker still a free agent. Hamlin had a productive college career with 275 tackles and six interceptions.
166. TEN – Tre Brown/CB Oklahoma: Undersized but competitive corner who probably moves from the outside to the slot in the NFL. Second corner the Titans have taken but the first for nickel duties.
167. LVR – Ian Book/QB Notre Dame: Jon Gruden loves quarterback competition and he loves QBs with the “it” factor. Book is a decent athlete with a lot of moxie but lacks elite physical traits. Still, he’s a winner. No one in Fighting Irish history won more games than him.
168. MIN – Bobby Brown III/DT Texas A&M: Big defensive linemen with a good personality and production. 5.5 sacks in ten games last year for the Aggies. Already the ninth pick for the Vikings, Mike Zimmer loves throwing a lot of darts which isn’t a bad strategy so I’m focusing on talent and value moreso than outright need.
169. CLE – Brenden Jaimes/OT Nebraska: Underrated left tackle who could start someday though it’ll be tough to crack the LT spot with Jedrick Wills looking like a home run. Jaimes is a little light at 298 pounds on a 6’5 frame but put up some decent testing numbers and was a four-year starter for the Huskers, seeing time at left and right tackle.
170. JAC – JaCoby Stevens/LB LSU: Safety/linebacker hybrid with 190 career tackles and four interceptions. Began his career as a receiver before flipping to the defensive side of the football. Already the tenth selection for the rebuilding Jags.
171. BAL – Tony Fields/LB West Virginia: Fields impressed at the Senior Bowl, playing downhill and defending the run well. Bit undersized but he could carve out a role on special teams.
172. SF – Demmodore Lenoir/CB Oregon: Lenoir played on the outside in college but is projected to kick to the slot in the NFL. The 49ers brought back K’Waun Williams but he’s about to turn 30 and signed just a one-year deal. Lenoir intercepted six passes for the Ducks.
173. GB – James Wiggins/S Cincinnati: Wiggins is the second Bearcats’ safety drafted. Wiggins tested well at his Pro Day, recording a 9.7 RAS score thanks to a 4.42 40 and 38 inch vertical. Leaving score a year early, he picked off four passes as a sophomore in 2019.
174. BUF – Jonathan Marshall/DT Arkansas: Marshall had an unproductive career for the Razorbacks but stood out on the Pro Day circuit. 4.88 40 with 36 reps on the bench and a 32 inch vertical. Scouts have to figure out why he had just 1.5 sacks in his career. But I could see him going higher than this in a pretty weak interior d-line class.
175. KC – Chris Evans/RB Michigan: Potential as a third down back to replace Le’Veon Bell. Evans wasn’t used a ton as a receiver in school but shows pass-catching chops and blew his Pro Day workout out of the water. 40.5 inch vert with a 6.85 three cone.
176. TB – Camryn Bynum/CB California: Bynum doesn’t have great length but works well as a man corner with good ball skills. Lots of start and team captain makes him a solid grab in the fifth round.
177. NE – Josh Palmer/WR Tennessee: Palmer has some sleeper appeal but his college production was off the charts. The Patriots are collecting as many receivers as possible, hoping someone hits.
178. GB – Shaka Toney/EDGE Penn State: Athletic pass rusher who had better production than a guy like Jayson Oweh, who gets drafted much higher. 20 career sacks for the Nittany Lions. Every team needs pass rush depth.
179. DAL – Darius Stills/DT West Virginia: Undersized defensive linemen with 10.5 sacks for the Mountaineers. Cowboys trying everything to overhaul their defense.
180. SF – Kene Nwangwu/RB Iowa State: Deep sleeper in this running back class who exploded with a 4.32 Pro Day for the Cyclones. But he was a backup in his college career, given just 143 carries for 744 yards. There’s real value for him as a kick returner. He averaged nearly 27 yards per return on 92 tries.
181. KC – Jacob Harris/WR Central Florida: Height/weight/speed receiver who is incredibly raw but a good stash player on the practice squad for a year. Harris goes 6’5, 219 who ran in the low 4.4’s with a 40.5 inch vertical and 11’1” broad. He could get moved to tight end next to Travis Kelce.
182. ATL – Marco Wilson/CB Florida: Underrated corner who had just 29 tackles and no interceptions as a junior. But he picked off three passes in 2019. Elite testing with a 4.35 40 and 43.5 inch vertical at his Gators’ workout. Could go higher than this.
183. ATL – Quintin Morris/TE Bowling Green: Move tight end who functions more like a receiver but I like him in a tight end class that isn’t super deep. Dealt with horrid QB play in school, some of the worst I’ve ever seen. Catching passes from Matt Ryan and Justin Fields will make him look a lot more effective.
184. BAL – Drew Dalman/C Stanford: Third offensive linemen the Ravens have drafted but they’re getting talented players, taking advantage of the depth in this class. Dalman has below average size but has center/guard versatility and good bloodlines. His dad played football at Stanford and went on to coach in the NFL. Dalman is whip smart too as a mechanical engineer major.
185. LAC – Sadarius Hutcherson/OG South Carolina: Good-sized guard though he has below average length. Will look to backup Matt Feiler, signed over from Pittsburgh and reuniting with offensive line coach Shaun Sarrett.
186. NYJ – Forrest Merrill/DT Arkansas State: Big plugger at 6’0, 322 pounds but he tested like a guy of his size. But he was productive with 68 tackles and 8.5 sacks over his career. 35 of those came as a freshman.
187. ATL – Jaret Patterson/RB Buffalo: Highly productive running back with great lateral mobility that compares well to Devin Singletary. But his lack of size pushes him down in the draft. He won’t be putting up 8 touchdown rushing games in the NFL.
188. NE – Nick McCloud/CB Notre Dame: Upside flier as the Pats throw a dart on Day Three. Transferred over from NC State and had 33 tackles with eight pass breakups as a senior. MVP of this year’s Hula Bowl with a pair of INTs. Ran in the 4.4’s at his Pro Day.
189. PHI – Chauncey Golston/DT Iowa: Underrated defensive tackle with at least 8.5 tackles for loss in each of the last three seasons. Impressed with a 36 inch vertical and 4.83 40 at his Pro Day. He could go a little bit higher than this.
190. CIN – Bryan Mills/CB North Carolina Central: Small school sleeper but the lack of speed (4.6 40) and terrible bench press (only two reps) make him a boom/bust guy. Lanky at 6’1, 174, he reminds me of Harlan Miller. Picked off five passes as a junior in 2019 and named First-Team MEAC.
191. CAR – Nick Neimann/LB Iowa: Niemann didn’t have a lot of production but racked up 77 tackles as a senior. Ran in the low 4.5’s at his Pro Day, making him an interesting upside player late on Day Three.
192. DAL – Sam Ehlinger/QB Texas: Local kid staying in Texas. With Andy Dalton in Chicago, the Cowboys look for Dak Prescott’s backup. Ehlinger probably isn’t that guy, at least not right away, but he threw almost 100 touchdowns for the Longhorns.
193. CAR – Brady White/QB Memphis: Later round flier on a QB after trading away Teddy Bridgewater. White his final three years at Memphis after transferring from Arizona State, finishing his Tigers’ career with 90 touchdown passes and over 10,000 yards. Worth drafting.
194. SF – Shawn Davis/S Florida: Big hitter with good size, he flashed with a near-40 inch vertical and 10’8” broad at his Pro Day. 123 career tackles for the Gators with five interceptions.
195. HOU – D’Ante Smith/OT East Carolina: Could go higher but the strong tackle class pushes Smith down. He’ll have to keep adding to his frame and some think he’ll kick to guard. The Texans could use tackle depth.
196. NYG – Thomas Graham/CB Oregon: High IQ corner with average testing and measurables but had eight interceptions in three years with the Ducks before sitting out his final season. Nothing wrong with corner depth later in the draft.
197. NE – Ben Mason/FB Michigan: First fullback of the draft. Mason compares to Baltimore’s Patrick Ricard, right down to their time spent playing defensive tackle. Mason can have a minor role in the passing game while becoming an elite special teamer.
198. LAC – Riley Patterson/K Memphis: And the first kicker goes off the board. Michael Badgley struggled throughout last season with a career-low FG and XP percentages (72.7% and 92.3% respectively). Patterson had a tougher senior season but starred in 2019, making 23 of his 25 field goals.
199. MIN – Royce Newman/OG Ole Miss: Big tackle at Ole Miss who may kick to guard in the NFL due to below average testing. Newman actually spent his junior year at left guard before moving over to right tackle as a senior.
200. LVR – Tamorrion Terry/WR Florida State: Raiders have plenty of speed and slot guys on the team. Now they get an above-the-rim receiver in Terry who caught 17 touchdowns across 2018-2019 before a quieter junior season that saw him leave school in November to declare for the draft. He butted heads with the coaching staff there but when times were good, Terry was a force. Big guy at 6’3, 207 with 33+ inch arms.
201. NYG – Tre’ McKitty/TE Georgia: Blocking tight end whose slightly undersized and on the low end of production. Six catches in four games last year but he made them count, averaging 18 yards per reception. Depth behind Evan Engram whose only played all 16 games once in his four-year career.
202. CIN – Tommy Togiai/DT Ohio State: Sleeper value here and a local kid. Togiai didn’t play until 2020, picking up 4.5 TFL and three sacks in seven games before declaring early. He’s not Geno Atkins but will add some depth along the interior defensive line for the Bengals.
203. HOU – Hamilcar Rashed Jr./DE Oregon State: Rashed Jr. had a monster 2019 season, 22.5 tackles for loss, 14 sacks, before things came crashing down to Earth in 2020. Battling injury, he had only two tackles for a loss and failed to record a sack. Potential for him to become a pass rusher in this league but his ugly 7.51 three cone drops him down into the later stages of Day Three.
204. CHI – Gerrid Doaks/RB Cincinnati: Big back with some juice, he had 14 rushing scores across three seasons for the Bearcats. #3 running back for the Bears behind David Montgomery and Tarik Cohen.
205. TEN – Jose Borregales/K Miami (FL): Only kicker on the Titans’ roster is Tucker McCann. He’s never attempted a kick in the NFL. Borregales is viewed as one of the top kickers in the draft and had a great senior season, hitting all his extra points while making 90.9% percent of his field goals (20/22). He was money from inside 40 yards.
206. IND – Tuf Borland/LB Ohio State: Yet another Ohio State linebacker drafted. Borland probably won’t have as good of an NFL career as he had in college but could find a home on special teams. Team captain with 229 career tackles on his resume. He’ll have to overcome that ghastly 5.00 40 time he ran, though.
207. KC – Lorenzo Neal Jr./DT Purdue: Son of former Chargers’ FB Lorenzo Neal, reminding us we’re all very, very old. A run-stuffer who had just 72 tackles and four sacks in his Boilermakers’ career.
208. CHI – Mark Gilbert/CB Duke: Sleeper corner with good size but on the lanky side. Tested very well at his Pro Day, highlighted by a 10’10” broad and 36 inch vertical though he’s a bit stiff-hipped as evident by his 4.38 short shuttle and 7.10 three cone. He intercepted six passes as a sophomore in 2017 but played only four games since then.
209. LAR – Josh Ball/OT Marshall: Ball was a highly-touted recruit at Florida State but an alleged domestic incident got him suspended and he transferred to Marshall. Those off-field questions and the strength of this tackle class move him down draft board.
210. BAL – Tedarrell Slaton/NT Florida: Better known as TJ, Slaton can be a giant plugger in the middle. A hallmark of Ravens’ defenses from Kelly Gregg and Haloti Ngata to Michael Pierce and Brandon Williams. He weighed in at 6’4, 330 pounds.
211. CLE – Feleipie Franks/QB Arkansas: Florida transfer who spent one year with Arkansas. Threw 17 touchdowns as a senior. He could stick at quarterback but he’s raw and a quality athlete (9.56 RAS score) may mean he makes a position switch. At 6065, 234 pounds, like Washington’s Logan Thomas, he could move to tight end and be a stash player for two seasons while he learns the ropes.
212. HOU – Marlon Williams/WR Central Florida: Value game here for the Texans as they draft their second wide receiver. He burst onto the scene in 2020, recording over 1000 yards for the first time in his college career. Also found the end zone a career-high ten times.
213. BUF – Jaelon Darden/WR North Texas: Looking to become the first North Texas player drafted since LB Cody Spencer in 2004 and the first Mean Green wide receiver taken since Ron Shanklin in 1970. Darden is small but electric and an absolute playmaker with 31 touchdowns over his last two years. Future return man and slot receiver behind Cole Beasley and Emmanuel Sanders.
214. GB – Ta’Quon Graham/DE Texas: One of the few five-techs in this draft, Graham goes 6’3, 292 with great length. 35 inch arms. 17.5 tackles for loss over the past two years.
215. TB – James Smith/P Cincinnati: First punter drafted. Smith is viewed as the best punter in the class but struggled in his Senior Bowl showing. He is a left-footed punter which is relatively rare as far as punters go. Bradley Pinion had a career high average last year but had been average to below average for most of his time in the NFL.
216. PIT – Luke Farrell/TE Ohio State: Blocking-first tight end who has just nine receptions over his last two seasons. Did show some athleticism at his Pro Day and has the size/length the Steelers look for when drafting the position.
217. TB – Shaun Beyer/TE Iowa: One of the biggest Combine snubs (not that it means much this year), Beyer probably isn’t the next George Kittle but has a similar story. Barely used in the passing game but made some tough catches and ran 4.81 with great agility scores (4.26 short shuttle/7.02 three cone) during his Pro Day testing. Upside here with Rob Gronkowski probably in his last year and Cameron Brate now 30.
218. NO – Dan Moore Jr./OT Texas A&M: Big guy at 6’5, 311 with tremendous length (34.5 inch arms) and good athletic scores. Three-year starter mostly on the blindside but has gotten work at right tackle too.
219. ATL – Trevon Grimes/WR Florida: Impressive jump ball receiver who burst onto the scene with Kyle Rask in 2020. Depth at wideout especially with Julio Jones possibly on the trading block. If Jones is dealt on draft day, the need to take a receiver becomes a lot higher, obviously.
220. GB – Will Fries/OG Penn State: Versatile, tough offensive linemen. Experience at tackle and both guard spots. Could hang around on rosters for 5-6 seasons.
221. CHI – Robert Jones/OG Middle Tennessee State: Big, smaller-school sleeper who left school a year early. Two-year starter at MTSU after transferring from JUCO. Some upside here.
222. CAR – Naquan Jones/DT Michigan State: Panthers could take a defensive tackle earlier than this. But Jones is a big man in the middle at 6’3, 313 with 33 inch arms. Had a career year with five tackles for loss as a senior.
223. ARI – Victor Dimukeje/EDGE Duke: Dimukeje is a stocky, powerful edge rusher who picked up 21.5 sacks in his Blue Devils’ career. Also had 32 tackles for loss. Depth for the Cardinals in the 6th round.
224. PHI – Max Duffy/P Kentucky: Rugby punter who has to transition to the “spiral” punting of the NFL. Eagles have had success with Aussie punters in Sav Rocca and Cameron Johnston. Duffy was the Ray Guy Award winner in 2019. He is older than your typical prospect, 28, and has a concussion history. He was also their holder for just one season.
225. PHI – Jaylon Moore/OT Western Michigan: Underrated offensive tackle with decent size, power, and athleticism. Left tackle experience at WMU who got the Senior Bowl invite. Could be in the starting mix by 2022.
226. NYJ – Malcolm Koonce/EDGE Buffalo: Bendy pass rusher who can flatten and get upfield. On the skinnier side but plays the run hard with 13 sacks his past two seasons. Jets hoping to have a potent edge rush for the first time in a long time.
227. DAL – Mike Strachan/WR Charleston: Sleeper height/weight wideout who was first-team All-MEC in 2019, catching 78 passes for over 1300 yards and a whopping 19 touchdowns. Once had over 200 yards in one game vs Notre Dame College.
228. DAL – Rakeem Boyd/RB Arkansas: Cowboys attacking skill positions with their last two picks. Potential #3 back behind Zeke Elliott and Tony Pollard. Boyd had a big year in 2019 rushing for over 1100 yards but was limited to just 309 and under four yards per carry as a senior in 2020.
229. NO – Eli Howard/DE Texas Tech: Well-built defensive end/tackle who transferred from North Texas and battled injury. Low-ceiling player but could find a rotational role in the Saints’ defense.
230. SF – Dax Milne/WR BYU: Milne won’t wow athletically but was Wilson’s favorite target in 2020, catching 70 balls for nearly 1200 yards and eight touchdowns. Also used a little bit in the run game which fits well in this offense.
231. MIA – Cade Johnson/WR South Dakota State: Johnson may be drafted higher than this but his poor testing and small school background push him down the charts. Still, he’s an exciting player with extremely productive 2018 and 2019 seasons. Well over 1000 yards in both of those years. Good value at this spot.
232. TEN – KJ Costello/QB Mississippi State: Stanford transfer who got off to a blistering start in 2020 throwing five touchdowns in an upset win over LSU in the opener. But thinks quickly went downhill from there only throwing one touchdown and nine interceptions the rest of the way, leading to his benching. Big-arm but not mobile with poor mechanics, dropping the ball too low on his windup and when navigating the pocket.
233. HOU – Jamien Sherwood/S Auburn: Well-built safety with solid productions, 75 tackles as a junior in 2020, but ran in the 4.7’s at his Pro Day. Ugly. That drops him into the late rounds.
234. PHI – Briley Moore/TE Kansas State: Athletic tight end who spent most of his career at Northern Iowa before transferring to Kansas State for 2020 where he averaged over 15 yards per grab with three touchdowns. 4.66 40 and 37.5 inch vert at his Pro Day. Zach Ertz won’t be on the roster long.
235. CIN – Braylon Jones/C Houston: Versatile player with center/guard versatility. More time at guard but some coaches view him as a better center. Bengals only draft two offensive linemen but roll the dice with Jonah Williams and Riley Reiff.
236. BUF – Calvin Ashley/OT Florida A&M: Ashley declared for the draft after his 2020 season was cancelled. Great size at 6’6, 314 with 34+ inch arms. Long college journey from Auburn to Florida to A&M but there’s some upside appeal here for the Bills late in the draft. He was a five-star recruit out of high school.
237. DEN – Shi Smith/WR South Carolina: Undersized but exciting YAC receiver who had steady but never great production in school. Put up good numbers of his Pro Day, running in the 4.4’s. Broncos have made investments at receiver but this is important value and depth.
238. DAL – Thomas Fletcher/LS Alabama: Long snapper alert. Cowboys parted away with longtime veteran L.P. Ladoucer this offseason. Fletcher is widely considered the best snapper in the draft.
239. DEN – Brady Breeze/S Oregon: One of so many Oregon DBs to get drafted this year. Didn’t play in 2020 and was just a one-year starter, recording 62 tackles and a pair of picks in 2019 and tested above average at his Ducks’ workout. 4.55 40 with 20 reps on the bar and a 38 inch vertical.
240. PHI – Jalen Camp/WR Georgia Tech: Still a couple good receivers so the Eagles play the value game with Camp. Production was light still playing in the remnants of their triple option offense. Best year came in 2020 with 27 grabs and four touchdowns. His Pro Day testing gets him drafted. At 6’2, 226 pounds, he ran in the high 4.4’s with a 39.5 inch vertical, 10’5” broad and 29 reps on the bench. Woah.
241. LAC – Chris Rumph III/EDGE Duke: Rumph falls a bit because of his size at 235 pounds but he has great length and picked up eight sacks for Duke a year ago. Chargers play the value game and add another pass rusher even though they don’t need to take one.
242. NE – Brendon White/S Rutgers: Good size who bounced from Ohio State to Rutgers, picking off one pass as a senior. Belichick loves drafting Scarlet Knights and gets one here to finish out the draft.
243. ARI – Michael Carter II/S Duke: The other Michael Carter in the draft. Slot/safety type at 5095, 184 pounds with a fast 40 but below average other testing. 41 tackles and two interceptions as a senior for the Blue Devils.
244. MIA – Brandon Kennedy/C Tennessee: Alabama transfer who was named team captain as a senior for the Vols. Lack of size at 6’2, 286 and marginal testing across the board pushes him way late into the draft. Certainly possible he goes undrafted.
245. PIT – Marquez Stevenson/WR Houston: Steelers draft wide receivers as frequently as any team in the league. Above average speed with big-play ability and kick return experience. He’ll get stashed on the practice squad for a season.
246. WFT – DJ Daniel/CB Georgia: Sleeper corner who battled an ankle injury from the start of the 2020 season, limiting him to just four games and nine tackles. Had a strong Senior Bowl and possesses great length, 33+ inch arms, for his sub-six foot frame. Lack of long speed is the concern here, potentially pushing him to the slot.
247. ARI – Jake Funk/RB Maryland: One of my favorite sleeper backs in the draft, Funk tested well and had a good week of the College Gridiron Showcase. Spent five years at Maryland but it paid off in 2020, averaging nearly nine yards per carry with four total touchdowns. Good size at 200+ pounds.
248. IND – Daelin Hayes/EDGE Notre Dame: Hayes came to ND as a five-star recruit but never lived up to that billing due to repeated shoulder injuries. But he plays the run hard, is versatile, and extremely high-character. Important for GM Chris Ballard.
249. JAC – Shakur Brown/CB Michigan State: Undersized corner who didn’t run well but intercepted five passes as a junior in 2020. Cornerback is one of the few positions the Jaguars haven’t drafted yet. Until now.
250. SEA – Tarron Jackson/DE Coastal Carolina: Amazing, just the third pick of the draft for Seattle. Have to think they trade down with one of their earlier picks. Jackson is a sleeper pass rusher with 18 sacks across the last two seasons. Good size/length profile and nice depth with the final few picks of the 2021 NFL Draft.
251. TB – Austin Watkins/WR UAB: Jump-ball receiver with Chris Godwin playing on the franchise tag. Watkins is the cousin of Ravens’ wideout Sammy Watkins and went over 100 yards for the Blazers in 2019.
252. LAR – William Bradley-King/DE Baylor: Bradley-King transferred from Arkansas State and registered 5.5 tackles for loss and 3.5 sacks across nine games for the Bears in 2020. Late pass rush depth for Sean McVay and company.
253. DEN – Artyavious Lynn/TE TCU: Lynn has good size but very little in terms of production. 22 career catches, never more than one in a season. Potential stash tight end for a season or two behind Noah Fant.
254. PIT – KJ Britt/LB Auburn: Physical run stuffer cut from the same cloth as Vince Williams. Britt probably won’t be anything better than a special teamer though. He had a nice week in Mobile.
255. NO – Grant Stuard/LB Houston: Stuard is a hair-on-fire special teamer who almost blocked two punts at the Senior Bowl. Easy guy to root for though his lack of size and average athleticism limits upside. He gets to stay local with the Saints.
256. GB – Brandon Smith/WR Iowa: Smith lacks long speed but shows explosion and could potentially become a very good special teams player for the Packers. His production was nothing to write home about, averaging just ten yards per catch his final season.
257. CLE – Jermar Jefferson/RB Oregon State: Zone type runner who rushed for 254 yards against Arizona State back in 2018 and hit the 200 mark again in 2020 versus Oregon. But his overall production wasn’t great despite those highlight-reel games. He was also limited as a receiver, catching 18 balls his final two years. Depth behind Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt.
258. WFT – Jon Dietzen/OG Wisconsin: Big ‘ol Wisconsin guard to close out the draft for Washington. Experience at left tackle and left guard but he’ll stay inside for the NFL. Excellent starting experience in college. He retired after suffering multiple injuries but rejoined the team in 2020. If he stays healthy, there’s real talent here.
259. TB – Anthony Butler/LB Liberty: Your 2021 Mr. Irrelevant. Butler played at Charlotte before transferring to Liberty for his final season, picking up 67 tackles (4 for a loss) and two interceptions for the Flames. His testing was poor, running a 4.88, so he’ll look to carve out a home on special teams.