A friend of mine, Ben, who recently published his early 2021 mock, got the juices flowing for me to produce my first 2021 mock of this year! I cannot be out shined by him!
2020 has been a year to forget but, does not mean we can’t look forward to the 2021 draft. This years scouting will be harder than ever with kids opting out and only having last years tape only to go off of. Plus combine/pro day work. Its going to be fun to see how this changes from now until April.
Tweet or comment where ever you read this article on anything you want to go over. Love a good conversation of where my thought process is going here. Thanks for reading!
1. Jets: Trevor Lawrence – QB Clemson
Do the Jets move on from Sam Darnold? It’s hard to say at this point with the lack of help around him to succeed. Hopefully we will know the Jets plan closer to the draft. As of know we will give them the best prospect in the draft, as long as he doesn’t return for his senior season.
2. Jacksonville: Justin Fields – QB Ohio State
Don’t be shocked come April, we’re not talking about Fields being the #1 QB selected. Most who don’t follow the draft as deep will laugh but when it comes into question, just remember I mentioned this. (Not saying I fully believe, but saying I wouldn’t be shocked)
3. Washington: Penei Sewell – OT Oregon
The best prospect in this draft, maybe even over the two listed QBs already selected. Washington missed out on the two polarizing QB prospects, but could stick it out with Alex Smith or look to FA. They need a dominate LT since they lost Williams two years ago.
4. Cowboys: Patrick Surtain II – CB Alabama
5. Chargers: Christian Darrisaw – OT Virginia Tech
6. Dolphins: Micah Parson – LB Penn State
It was between Parson and Chase for me here. With it being such a deep WR class again, I opted for the Dolphins to wait to address that position and fill the need on defense first
7. Bengals: Greg Rousseau – Edge Miami
8. Giants: Ja’Marr Chase – WR LSU
Giants have a ton of needs but they lack a true #1 weapon for their young QB. Slayton is great as a #2. Bringing in Chase could be that legit weapon to pair with him taking Jones to the next level!
9. Panthers: Caleb Farley – CB Virginia Tech
10. Falcons: Keith Paye – Edge Michigan
11. Broncos: Samuel Cosmi – OT Texas
There is real talk Denver may move on from Lock already. And with a few big name QBs on the board, it’s a possibility. Something I will monitor and see where my pick here goes in the near future.
12. 49ers: Wyatt Davis: IOL – Ohio St.
Another team with talks they could move from their QB. They still have money invested in Jimmy G and think they will not move on from him yet. They will need to sure up the interior line for a healthy 2021 season and make yet another run.
Time to get into the OT in this draft. They may not be as fun to read about as the Skill positions but they are one of the most important positions on the field. Below are arguably the TOP 10 tackles you will see drafted this April!
Pros: – Strong – Creates huge movement – Creates leverage points – Heavy hands – Punches with great placement and timing – Shows good balance and control – Great footwork in pass pro – Good awareness
Cons: – Has great foot speed but needs to count on it more at the next level with his technique – At times let’s his hands go low allowing defends a chance to beat him – Played only on the Right side (tuas blind side) can he adjust to the left side still
Overall: Wills is polished and has a mean streak about him to punish defenders. His main knock is can he play the left side on a line after years of being on the ride. I am sure he can but that could be what makes him slide some, but you are getting a sound tackle.
Tristan Wirfs – Iowa 6-5 322
Pros: – Impressive mobility/body control – Shows good functional strength – Uses his hips well – Plenty of pop out of his stance to stun a defender – Has the athletic speed to work next level on run blocks – Has ability to play Guard as well as RT or LT
Cons: – Can be late to his punches in pass pro allowing defenders to get inside of him – Can be top heavy when run blocking. Making him fall over before getting to his 2nd level block – Can continue to work on hand placement
Overall: Wirfs is a very athletic tackle for his size. He has the ability to play all over the line. He started 3.5 at RT with some time late at LT and impressed there. He can dominate at guard if he fails at the tackle position. He is strong and just needs to polish up some of his skill sets but is easily in the running for top tackle this year.
Mekhi Becton – Louisville 6-7 369
Pros: – Huge man (good luck getting around him) – Strong but raw – Athletic and nimble on his feet for his size – Huge reach and wing span – Body control and balance
Cons: – Size. Can he keep his weight in check to be his most effective self – Technique is still raw and can use some polishing
Overall: Becton is my favorite tackle in the class. He needs to improve his technique and won’t be able to bully college competition with just his size like he did but he showed growth in this technique and I believe it is coming along nicely making him a intriguing player to anchor your LT for 10 plus years.
Andrew Thomas – Georgia 6-5 320
Pros: – Powerful and strong – Fires out of stance – Heavy hands and a strong punch – Smart pre snap – Looks the part – Consistent
Cons: – Hand placement can be to high – Can panic when beat By speed rushers – Can be to aggressive on the field
Overall: Thomas has the most experience at LT out of the big 4. He needs to work on his hand placement and make sure he doesn’t get flagged for being to aggressive on the field. You are going to get a solid year in year out high production left tackle with this kid.
Josh Jones – Houston 6-5 311
Pros: – Ideal size – Shows good mobility and athletic ability – Improved as a run blocker – Shows good strike variations – Shows foot speed to keep pace with rushers – Has ability to take advantage of leverages and angles – Experience player – Impressive senior bowl week
Cons: – Technical growth – Hands can be to low – Allows opponents to get into his frame – Show more pop and stun power – Football IQ?
Overall: Jones impressed at the senior bowl week making him rise up boards. He has all the skills, size, strength and athletic ability to be an elite LT. He needs to work on the fundamentals and develop a bit more. He has a chance to go late 1st to a team who missed on the top 4 big tackles prospects.
Ezra Cleveland – Boise State 6-6 310
Pros: – Great mobility and uses it well on speed rushers – Works good in zone scheme – Range in space – Keeps feet and hips engaged during blocks – Mirror ability – 3 year starter – Effective punch
Cons: – Lacks overall strength – Can look to create more power in his punch and drive people in the run game – Could struggle against bull rush – Not a mauler – Effective and consistent but never dominated on tape
Overall: Cleveland needs to build up his strength and find the fire in his belly to become a mean man on the line and reach his full potential. He has the athletic ability and experience to match defenders and block them well. He may work best in a zone scheme at the next level.
Lucas Niang – TCU 6-7 328
Pros: – Big and athletic – Powerful blocker – Shows good lateral movement skills and ability to work in space – Rolls his hips into contact – Accelerates feet to create movement in the run game – Good awareness in pass protection – Scheme versatile
Cons: – Foot work needs an overhaul to reach his set point – Can open hips to soon allowing a rush lane to open – Build a better base to hold defenders longer – Needs to build his lower half some – Watch weight in mid section
Overall: Niang is a big man who packs a punch on the line. He versatile and moves well for this size to play multiple schemes. To reach his full potential he must work on his foot work and body control to get the most out of his power and skills.
Austin Jackson – USC 6-6 310
Pros: – Foot speed to get out of his stance quick – Speed to handle speed rushers – Quick punch and effective in pass blocking – Can work well in zone – 2 year starter at LT – Body has room to develop more strength and fill out more
Cons: – Can be more of a positional blocker needing angles to aid him – Doesn’t push defender back as much as you want in the run game – Can get to top heavy at times – Needs to play with better bend and power – Lower body strength is lacking – Footwork as a pass blocker needs work
Overall: Jackson looks the part and has the body to grow more into the position. He needs to work on his overall strength and footwork technique to become more NFL ready. His tape can be inconsistent at times and hope it can be change than being stuck in his ways.
Isaiah Wilson – Georgia 6-7 340
Pros: – Massive man with some good explosion – Has the power in the run game – He punches hard and the defender will feel it – Shown improvement in the pass game – Has some great moments just moving and stopping great rushers
Cons: – Inconsistent hand placement – Improve his timing – Tightness in his lower half – Awareness in pass protection is inconsistent – Footwork still needs work
Overall: 2 year starter at RT. He shows great blend of size power and mobility. When Wilson is on he could be the best tackle on the field. The power alone will make defenders not want to face him for 60 minutes. He must continue to work on his technique and foot work to be more consistent on tape.
Prince Tega Wanogho – Auburn 6-5 307
Pros: – Springy into his pass sets – Athletic with a basketball background – Shines as a pass blocker – Shows ability to recover quick – Used as a puller in the run game
Cons: – Still raw and learning the game – Lower half is a bit small – Smaller legs helps his speed but lacks power – Doesn’t pack the punch you want – Defenders are able to shred from him due to his lack in power – Needs to learn to finish blocks
Overall: Still raw and learning. Wanogho has a lot of tools teams will like. They will need to make him stronger and teach him to use his size to his advantage. His athletic ability will allow him to start early and mirror defenders. He is a good Day 2 tackle for a team waiting to address the need.
Another off-season and what a wild one it has been! We’re nearing the start of April and all professional sports are suspended and seasons are in question. So in turn we have a ton of spare time! Spare time means content and discussions! The NFL draft is close and that means rookie mock drafts!
It’s an exciting time in football. There has been a changing of the guard at the quarterback position. The older studs like Brady, Brees and Rivers have had their day. Patrick Mahomes and Lamar Jackson have taken over their respective positions.
This 2020 draft class is filled to the brim with young and hungry guys looking to stake their claim to the throne. This is a very strong class of kids and its loaded with offensive talent. Running backs and wide receivers galore!
If you and your league get together to draft rookies separately then I salute you! It just adds more fun to the process! The more I get into the process the more I see how loaded this 2020 draft class is! This should be fun! Lets go!
1. CeeDee Lamb WR-Okalahoma
I’m not normally a first overall draft pick freak. It has its advantages but it also comes with risk. This season I’m doing all that I can to get the number one overall selection. As you can see I have picked Lamb first overall. The longevity of the WR position compared to a RB is much more sustainable. In this case I’m grabbing Lamb due to his versatile on field ability. CeeDee will blow right be you in press coverage one play then tip toe down the side line the next. He’s a no doubt, can’t miss stud!
2. Jonathan Taylor RB-Wisconsin
The more I’ve looked these kids over the more that I’ve seen the first four or five selections are all about team/personal preference. I’m in Michigan and a Big 10 guy. I’ve seen Taylor play quite a bit. He’s the best pure RB in this draft. 5’10 226 lbs and built to run over and run past you. He’s a massive asset in dynasty leagues that can provide immediate dividends. It’s a perfect combo! If you don’t have the number one pick and still manage to grab Taylor consider that a WIN!
3. Jerry Jeudy WR-Alabama
Jeudy is an elite route running that will make an immediate impact on your team. Keep mind these first four or five guys can literally be interchangeable. That’s the beauty of this draft class. Fantasy football is fantasy football and I don’t mention, “sure things” or “can’t miss” but correct me if I’m wrong. These top five kids are can’t miss. Beat me up in the comments but I’m standing by that! Jerry is a plus pick with the ability to climb up WR rankings by seasons end. Consider him a huge steal if he falls to you here.
4. D’Andre Swift RB-Georgia
Another stud running back from Georgia! Swift can burst through the line, breaking tackles and gain tough yards. Swift produced in the SEC, some of the best defenses in college football. He caught 73 passes for 666 yards and 5 touchdowns. D’Andre is electric, dynamic and quite swift on a football field. Another kid who will an impact from day 1!
5. J.K. Dobbins RB-Ohio State
These top three running backs, including Dobbins are so close that it comes down to personal preference like I had mentioned. J.K. is a legit three down back. Something we don’t see much in the NFL anymore. Running for OSU against some tough Big Ten competition I could see Dobbins finishing 2020 as the best RB from this rookie class.
6. Cam Akers RB-Florida State
Cam has struggled at FSU but not from any wrong doing himself. The Florida State program has struggled in the past few season. Cam is an amazing athlete who runs with power but can also catch passes. If you draft Akers this season he will slot in as an immediate RB2 with the upside to become your teams RB1. What’s shocking to me is he is still learning how to play the running back position. That mixed with poor offensive line play at FSU has some worried about his vision and ability to move downfield. Once he gets to the NFL expect some mild growing pains but a ton of excitement seeing how a real professional team can block around him!
7. Justin Jefferson WR-LSU
Justin is like a magician the way he can separate and get away from coverage. Another kid who will contribute right away I wouldn’t hesitate to draft him at 1.07.
8. Clyde Edwards–Helaine RB-LSU
CEH runs with purpose and power. You know what he’s going to do and where he’s going to go and you can’t stop him anyway. Has the agility to break tackles AND catch passes. What I love about this crop of RB’s is their pass catching abilities. He disappointed at the combine with a 4.6 40 time but when you see the way he runs you understand why.
9. Jalen Reagor WR-TCU
Analytically speaking Reagor is the best WR in the class. He accounted for 20% of TCU’s offensive production. Another kid who didn’t do much at combine, Jalen is a lock for immediate production in the NFL. I’m excited about him and you should too!
10. Tee Higgins WR-Clemson
Tee has great technique and his separation skills are simply amazing. Higgings is big kid (6’3 215lbs) and is a force down field. If Higgins can develop using other parts of the field he can be a definite WR1 stud.
11. Henry Ruggs WR-Alabama
All signs point a negative profile. He wasn’t the best WR on his own team. He didn’t have the best production. So why would we draft Henry in the first round of rookie drafts? He’s able to line up in the slot to create mismatches. He as fast as lightening and has some major work to do in the next level. Not as polished as the men drafted before him but has the potential to run with the best of them. Depending on your specific team needs Ruggs is a nice prospect to stash.
12. Denzel Mims WR-Baylor
Mims absolutely destroyed at the NFL combine. Ranking in the 90th percentile in his 40 yard dash (4.38), speed and burst. We’ve seen him shine on the outside and going deep. Denzel ranked 27th in yards per reception (15.9) and 5th in total touchdowns (28). Mims is athletic and provides an immediate impact for you fantasy team. As the last pick in the first round it’s a no-brainer. Draft Mims!
That’s it for round 1!
During my process of researching and actually writing this all out I noticed a few things. There are 15-20 kids that have an unbelievable ceiling with immense upside. I know “upside” is a fun buzz word in all fantasy outlets but it fits and I’m able to get my point across to you as the reader. This years rookie drafts are going to be loads of fun!