Which Teams Will Come Out as Winners and Losers?
By: Dominic Santarelli (Twitter @LEKINGDOM)
- Jacksonville Jaguars – Trevor Lawrence, Quarterback (Clemson)
This is the easiest pick in the entire draft. Lawrence is a can’t miss prospect with the mobility and arm strength to be elite at the next level. On tape, he flashes brilliance in both pre snap reads and handling the pass rush by making something out of nothing. He has a fantastic pocket presence and should have no problem dominating at the next level. With their first of four top 50 selections in this draft, the Jaguars found their franchise guy.
NFL Comp: Peyton Manning
- New York Jets – Penei Sewell, Offensive Tackle (Oregon)
In most drafts Sewell would be the consensus number one selection. At Oregon he showed all of the tools necessary to be a franchise left tackle. He is quick on his feet to handle the speed rushers, while also having the power to impose his will in the run game. Pairing him with Mecki Becton gives the Jets two potential perennial pro bowlers on the offensive line.
NFL Comp: Ronnie Stanley
- Carolina Panthers (Via Miami Dolphins) – Justin Fields, Quarterback (Ohio State)
This trade is to give the Dolphins extra assets for a potential Deshaun Watson trade or to give Tua Tagovailoa the best possible supporting cast. The Panthers trade the seventh, 40th, 2022 first, and 2022 fourth round picks in exchange for their franchise quarterback. Fields had an electric year at Ohio State and is the best deep ball thrower in the draft which bodes well for a team featuring Robbie Anderson and DJ Moore. Fields comes with a certain maturity and mental fortitude that will help him become the face of the Carolina Panthers. As of this draft pick Teddy Bridgewater is on the trade market.
NFL Comp: Russell Wilson
- Atlanta Falcons – Patrick Surtain II, Cornerback (Alabama)
The expected pick by many analysts for the Falcons is Zach Wilson, but I believe that Matt Ryan has a couple years left of above average quarterback play. The Falcons have been great on the offensive side of the ball, and their major flaw is the defensive back position. Surtain II looks to be the next dominant shutdown corner to enter the NFL and should make a dominant pairing with last year’s first round selection AJ Terrel. Surtain II has fluid hips and is a ballhawk giving him the ability to shut down half of the field.
NFL Comp: Tre’Davious White
- Cincinnati Bengals – Rashawn Slater, Offensive Tackle/Guard (Northwestern)
The Bengals only have one option at this pick, and it is offensive line. Joe Burrow was running for his life prior to suffering a season ending ACL injury, so protecting him should be their top priority. Slater is only 6’3 so many analysts have him kicking into play the guard position in the NFL, but in college he displayed quick feet and an ability to keep defenders in front of him. Burrow will love having this athletic lineman blocking for him, and for the Bengals it is the first of several lineman that need to be added to protect their young superstar quarterback.
NFL Comp: Caesar Ruiz
- Philadelphia Eagles – Kyle Pitts, Tight End (Florida)
Carson Wentz is tied to this team contractually for the next 3 years, and with the expected departure of Zach Ertz, the Eagles use this pick to get Wentz another security blanket. Pitts is the size of a tight end but has the footwork, coordination, and route running of a wide receiver. He is a force in the passing game with the size advantage over corners, and the speed advantage over linebackers. This pick should help Wentz bounce back from an abysmal year.
NFL Comp: Jimmy Graham
- Detroit Lions – Zach Wilson, Quarterback (BYU)
I fully expect the Lions to trade Matthew Stafford this offseason and in return will receive either a first or second round selection from a contender. This pick is used to select the successor to Stafford, and Zach Wilson has shown incredible arm talent in his lone season as the BYU starter. Wilson has shown a lightning quick release and above average mobility while mastering the ability to make something happen when the pocket collapses. I do have a concern that Wilson has not had to experience that Justin Fields and Trevor Lawrence have at running a pro-style offense at the highest level of competition, but the tape on Wilson does not lie, the kid can play. If the Lions hire an offensive minded head coach, this team has all the weapons to be dynamic on that side of the ball.
NFL Comp: Kyler Murray
- Miami Dolphins (Via Carolina Panthers) – Devonta Smith, Wide Receiver (Alabama)
The Dolphins are able to pick up several draft picks and still get their man in Devonte Smith. Coming off of arguably the greatest season by a college wide receiver ever, Smith should slot in perfectly next to Devonte Parker giving Tua Tagovailoa two dynaminc wide receivers. Smith is a little undersized at six foot and about 175lbs, but he makes up for the lack in size with some of the best route running and deceptive quickness I have ever seen from a college prospect. The Dolphins would probably take Smith with the third pick, so trading back and getting more picks is just icing on the cake.
NFL Comp: Antonio Brown
- Denver Broncos – Micah Parsons, Linebacker (Penn State)
The Broncos should go Quarterback here, but with the top three talents off the board, they decide to draft the player who will replace the injured and troublesome Von Miller. Micah Parsons is the prototypical linebacker with the ability to impact both the running and passing games. He has the speed to cover tight ends and come off of the edge to terrorize opposing tackles. The duo of Parsons and Bradley Chubb should give the Broncos a tremendous pass rush which will help an otherwise lackluster defense.
NFL Comp: Devin White
- Dallas Cowboys – Kwity Paye, Edge Rusher (Michigan)
The Cowboys need a complete overhaul on the defensive end. The selection of Kwity Paye gives them the prototypical pass rusher who could be a double-digit sack type of player coming off the edge. Paye possesses the rare combination of speed and power that is so highly coveted at this position. The Eagles, Washington Football Team, and Giants better beware this force of nature coming off of the edge wearing the star on his helmet.
NFL Comp: Chandler Jones
- Pittsburgh Steelers (Via New York Giants) – Trey Lance, Quarterback (North Dakota State)
The Steelers trade their first, fourth, and next year first round picks for this selection. A couple years ago the Steelers traded up to draft Devin Bush, and this time they do the same thing to draft Ben Roethlisberger’s successor. It is very possible that Lance sits behind Ben for a year to learn new offensive coordinator Matt Canada’s scheme. Trey Lance is everything that is desired from the modern-day quarterback, he is very mobile, throws the deep ball exceptionally well, and is able to throw on the run. The Steelers will have to use several picks this year to draft lineman to help protect their new young quarterback, but this pick gives the Steelers a talented young QB to go along with a promising young receiving core and a dominant defense.
NFL Comp: Deshaun Watson
- San Francisco 49ers – Christian Darrisaw, Offensive Tackle (Virginia Tech)
I believe the 49ers would draft Trey Lance if the Steelers did not jump in front of them to select him. With the expected departure of left tackle Trent Williams, the 49ers select his replacement to fortify an offensive line that is known for running the ball in the Shanahan system. Darrisaw brings a physical presence at the tackle position that fits perfectly with the power run scheme of the 49ers. This is a can’t miss pick for a team that was ravaged by injuries last year.
NFL Comp: Jedrick Wills Jr.
- Los Angeles Chargers – Christian Barmore, Defensive Tackle (Alabama)
The Chargers are in a really good spot, they have found their franchise quarterback in Justin Herbert and have several weapons on the offensive side of the ball. The Chargers select Barmore because of their need for an interior presence who can play all three downs and provide a pass rusher and a run stopper. Barmore plays the defensive tackle in a traditional 4-3 defense and will slide in perfectly next to Joey Bosa and Melvin Ingram.
NFL Comp: Michael Brockers
- Minnesota Vikings – Gregory Rousseau, Edge Rusher (Miami)
The Vikings found a stud in the first-round last year in Justin Jefferson, and this year will have similar results. Rousseau is a monster on the defensive front and should add a formidable presence to a defensive line that was decimated by injuries last season. Rousseau is a six foot seven defensive end who has both power and finesse tools in his arsenal which he will use to wreak havoc in backfields for the purple people eaters.
NFL Comp: Carlos Dunlap
- New England Patriots – Ja’Marr Chase, Wide Receiver (LSU)
Perhaps the steal of the draft, Chase slides all the way down to 15 not because of a lack of talent, but simply because other teams had bigger needs than wide receiver. Ja’Marr Chase, an absolute homerun hitter is able to create separation from opposing defenders and can run every route in the tree. Chase gives the Patriots an electric wide receiver that can make plays for whoever ends up taking snaps for Belichicks offense next season.
NFL Comp: Odell Beckham Jr.
- Arizona Cardinals – Jaylen Waddle, Wide Receiver (Alabama)
With the anticipated retirement of Larry Fitzgerald, it is up to the Cardinal Front office to give Kyler Murray another weapon to go along with Deandre Hopkins and Christian Kirk. Jaylen Waddle has the potential to be the best receiver in this draft if he can stay healthy. He has blazing speed and would provide the Cardinals a tremendous deep threat as well as an explosive slot receiver. This can be the missing piece that vaults the Cardinals into perennial playoff contention.
NFL Comp: Tyreek Hill
- Las Vegas Raiders – Jayson Oweh, Edge Rusher (Penn State)
Raiders General Manager Mike Mayok has done a fantastic job rebuilding the offense, giving Derek Carr several weapons as well as creating a formidable offensive line. The Raiders had one of the worst pass rushes in all of the NFL last season and that has to be the primary concern going into this draft. Jayson Oweh is a lightning quick edge rusher who should take advantage of slower offensive tackles at the next level. He possesses a super quick first step, and this selection helps the Raiders address their biggest hole on the roster.
NFL Comp: Jadeveon Clowney
- Miami Dolphins – Jeremiah Owusu-Karamoah, Linebacker (Notre Dame)
Head coach Brian Flores comes from the Belichick tree and in doing so makes him very defensive minded. After grabbing Devonte Smith earlier in the round, the Dolphins take Owusu-Karamoah who would be able to anchor the middle of the defense. At Notre Dame, Owusu-Karamoah showed the ability to fly from sideline-to-sideline disrupting screen plays and outside runs. My only concern for Owusu-Karamoah is his lack of size. At six foot one and a little over 215 lbs, he is the prototypical size of a strong safety who could get overwhelmed when defending the interior run game. His strengths are pass coverage, and using his speed to catch even the fasters ball carriers.
NFL Comp: Jamal Adams
- Washington Football Team – Mac Jones, Quarterback (Alabama)
This pick has the biggest bust potential of any first-round selection. With the unknown future of Alex Smith, and the recent release of Dwayne Haskins, the Washington Football Team does not have much of a choice but to select a franchise quarterback. My main concerns for Jones are a lack of mobility, underwhelming arm strength, and coming from Alabama’s talented offense. NFL quarterbacks are now expected to be an A+ at some sort of trait, whether it is the throwing power of Patrick Mahomes, the speed of Lamar Jackson, or the accuracy of Russell Wilson, every franchise quarterback has an A+ trait. I do not see any of these characteristics in Mac Jones, I simply view him as a serviceable starting quarterback and the Washington Football Team will be picking a quarterback again in the near future. It will be very interesting to see how Jones adapts to the NFL after having four first round wide receivers and a mammoth offensive line behind him at the University of Alabama.
NFL Comp: Teddy Bridgewater
- Chicago Bears – Tevin Jenkins, Offensive Tackle (Oklahoma State)
I think the best decision for the Bears would be to use this pick to trade up into the early first round to select a franchise quarterback to replace Mitchell Trubisky, however, if they are unable to trade up Tevin Jenkins would be the selection for the windy city. Jenkins provides an athletic tackle that is able to handle both pass rushers and still be impactful in the run game. No matter who is taking snaps for the Bears next season, Jenkins would be useful in protecting them.
NFL Comp: Mitchell Schwartz
- Detroit Lions (Via Indianapolis Colts) – Kadarious Toney, Wide Receiver (Florida)
This is the draft pick that is sent to the Lions in exchange for franchise quarterback Matthew Stafford. In this draft the Lions have already secured their new quarterback in Zach Wilson, and now they use this selection to give him a lightning quick playmaker on the outside. Kadarious Toney can make plays as a deep threat, slot receiver, punt returner, and gadget guy. With the impending free agency of Kenny Golladay, Danny Amendola, and Marvin Jones, Toney will give the Lions a playmaker on the outside to help ease Zach Wilson into the NFL.
NFL Comp: DeSean Jackson
- Tennessee Titans – Azeez Ojulari, Edge Rusher (Georgia)
It is safe to say that the Jadeveon Clowney experiment was an abject failure for the Titans, and he battled injuries throughout the season and really left them with an abysmal pass rush. With the assumption that Clowney walks this offseason, this selection gives them an explosive pass rusher to pair with Harold Landry. This dynamic duo of pass rushers should help the titans remain in playoff contention and gives them the ability to only rush four at a time and drop the rest back in coverage.
- New York Jets (Via Seattle Seahawks) – Caleb Farley, Cornerback (Virginia Tech)
This is the selection that new Head Coach Robert Salah will jump for joy over. Penei Sewell is a tremendous talent and will help fortify a leaky offensive line, but Farley is the type of shut down corner that Salah is familiar with coming from San Francisco. I love this pick for the Jets because it addresses their biggest need on the defensive side of the ball.
NFL Comp: Bradley Robey
- New York Giants (Via Pittsburgh Steelers) – Carlos Basham Jr, Edge Rusher (Wake Forest)
The Giants trading back allows them to gain an additional first round selection in next year’s draft while still filling a major need for their roster. Carlos Basham Jr is the perfect defensive end for their 4-3 system, and with the prototypical size should be an immediate starter for the New York Giants. I love this pick for the Giants because Basham will be a day one starter, and they will have two first round selections next season.
NFL Comp: Emmanuel Ogbah
- Jacksonville Jaguars (Via Los Angeles Rams) – Jayce Horn, Cornerback (South Carolina)
In Urban Meyer’s first year as the Head Coach of the Jaguars, he has four selections in the top 50 picks. His first selection was his superstar franchise quarterback, and with his second first round pick, the Jaguars get a potential shut down corner in Jayce Horn. Horn has the physicality and attitude that screams superstar corner in the NFL, he has all the physical tools to succeed at the next level. This is a step in the right direction for a team that only a few years ago had the number one defense in all of football.
NFL Comp: Jalen Ramsey
- Cleveland Browns – Nick Bolton, Linebacker (Missouri)
Coming off of the best year in almost a quarter century, the Cleveland Browns use this selection to retool a defense that struggled at times to handle teams that beat them with speed on the outside. Bolton is a smaller linebacker, but jumped off of the screen at Missouri. He excelled in both pass coverage and making tackles on open space. His speed and athleticism will help him thrive at the next level covering tight ends as well as blowing up screen passes and outside run plays.
NFL Comp: Ryan Shazier
- Baltimore Ravens – Rashod Bateman, Wide Receiver (Minnesota)
After another disappointing postseason loss many sceptics are blaming Lamar Jackson and his inability to get it done in the big game. The Ravens front office uses this selection to get Jackson another playmaker in the passing game. Bateman was one of college’s best route runners and displayed an ability to quickly get off the ball. This would be a fantastic pick for the Ravens because it would give Jackson two viable weapons on the outside (Hollywood Brown and Bateman).
NFL Comp: Juju Smith-Schuster
- New Orleans Saints – Asante Samuel Jr, Cornerback (Florida State)
With the presumed retirement of Drew Brees, it appears that the Jameis Winston era has begun in the bayou. The only quarterback prospect left on the board is Kyle Trask, but I don’t think he fits the Sean Payton scheme very well. The only other glaring need for the Saints is cornerback, and they address that need with this selection. Samuel Jr is the perfect slot corner who has the speed and the instincts to harass even the fastest wide receivers at the next level. He is a ballhawk and has the ability to take every interception to the house with his blazing speed.
NFL Comp: Buster Skrine
- Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Jaelen Phillips, Edge Rusher (Miami)
The Tompa Bay Bucs have very few holes in their roster, and with this selection they bolster their pass rush. Phillips has some injury concerns, but if he can stay healthy, he has the talent to be a steal in the late first round. This Miami product has shown the ability to be a stud on outside and make it difficult for quarterbacks to leave the pocket.
NFL Comp: Clelin Ferrel
- Buffalo Bills – Alex Leatherwood, Offensive Tackle (Alabama)
Alex Leatherwood is a big physical mauler of a tackle who just screams Buffalo. This franchise loves to play physical, dominating the line of scrimmage by running the ball to open up play action passing. Leatherwood would be the starting right tackle and comes with a physical presence that should help Josh Allen continue to play at an MVP level. He struggles in pass protection and needs to work on sliding his feet, but with the right coach and system should be a pro bowl level tackle.
NFL Comp: Mecki Becton
- Green Bay Packers – Zaven Collins, Linebacker (Tulsa)
The Green Bay Packers have the MVP of the league in Aaron Rodgers, a superstar offensive line, and pro bowl talent across the offensive side of the ball. Their pass rush is solid and is accompanied by a talented but young secondary. They could go receiver with this selection, but Zaven Collins is the perfect fit to anchor the interior of this defense. He is the perfect size for a run stuffing physical linebacker at six foot four 260lbs. He can play every linebacker position and even has the speed to get after the quarterback. This is a steal at the end of the first round and gives the Packers a playmaker on the defensive side of the ball.
NFL Comp: Tremaine Edmunds
- Kansas City Chiefs – Wyatt Davis, Offensive Guard (Ohio State)
The two-time defending champion Chiefs need talent on cheap contracts and that is exactly what Wyatt Davis gives them. Wyatt Davis gives the Chiefs a starting guard who has the length to pass protect, and the power to run block. This team’s top priority should always be to protect their franchise quarterback, and the selection of Davis ensures that Patrick Mahomes should be able to drop back into a clean pocket for the duration of his massive contract.
NFL Comp: David DeCastro
- Jacksonville Jaguars – Trevon Moehrig, Safety (TCU)
The Jaguars use another pick on a defensive back and this time it is a safety. Moehrig is a big bodies safety who is terrific at breaking up passes and excels at covering both running backs and tight ends. This pick along with Jayson Horn will help sure up Urban Meyer’s secondary, the
- New York Jets – Rondale Moore, Wide Receiver (Purdue)
Moore will play primarily in the slot but shows the ability to be a legitimate deep threat. He has a lightning quick release and would make Sam Darnold’s job a lot easier by giving him a reliable weapon to go to on key plays. The Jets could also use this pick to go after a pash rusher or an interior offensive lineman, but those players will be available later in the draft. Also, Moore is too talented to pass up for a third time.
- Miami Dolphins (Via Houston Texans) – Alijah Vera-Tucker, Offensive Tackle (USC)
The Dolphins select Vera-Tucker who will be the starting right tackle for Brian Flores’ offensive line. Last year, the Dolphins used a first-round selection on Austin Jackson to protect Tua Tagovailoa’s blind side. This selection gives Tua two young talented tackles to block for him as he hopes to lead the Dolphins into the postseason. I love Vera-Tucker fit with the Dolphins because of his ability to block in the zone read running style, and because he has shown the ability to handle the top pass rushers in college.
- Atlanta Falcons – Hamsah Nasirildeen, Safety/Linebacker hybrid (FSU)
The Falcons use their top two draft choices on the defensive side of the ball. Nasirildeen is the modern NFL defensive playmaker. He reminds me of Derwin James and Isiah Simmons because of his ability to play so many different positions in the secondary and linebacking core. Nasirildeen gives the Falcons a position less playmaker who can cover just about anyone, while still maintaining the size to impact the run game. The selections of Nasirildeen and Surtain II should help to revamp the porous Falcons’ secondary.
- Cincinnati Bengals – Samuel Cosmi, Offensive Tackle (Texas)
With Rashawn Slater projected to kick in to play guard, the Bengals select a big physical tackle who can protect Joe Burrow’s blind side. Cosmi was a dominant force at the University of Texas with a particular prowess in the run game. In the AFC North, every roster has a dominant pass rusher (TJ Watt, Myles Garrett, and Matthew Judon) so getting a blind side protector for Burrow was a need. With their first two selection being offensive lineman, the Bengals have built a solid foundation to block for Burrow and Joe Mixon.
- Philadelphia Eagles – Tyson Campbell, Cornerback (Georgia)
The Eagles had to address their horrible secondary in this draft and they do it here in the second round with Tyson Campbell. Campbell is a big corner who can start across from Darius Slay and hopefully begin to revive a dreadful Eagles defense. I love this fit for Campbell because the Eagles fans will love his tenacious physical play style.
- Detroit Lions – Chazz Surratt, Linebacker (UNC)
After taking two players on the offensive side of the ball in the first round, the Lions go defense in the second round. Chazz Surratt fills a huge need for the defense by adding a tackling machine at the linebacker position. I assume the Lions will hire an offensive minded coach to pair with new rookie quarterback Zach Wilson. But whatever coach they end up hiring would love to have Chazz Surratt starting at the linebacker position for him.
- Miami Dolphins (Via Carolina Panthers) – Alim McNeil, Defensive Tackle (North Carolina State)
This one of the selections acquired from Carolina in the Justin Fields trade, and with it the Dolphins address another big need and this time it is the defensive line. McNeil is a very unique talent because he is 320 lbs and is still able to rush the passer from the center of the defensive line. Brian Flores would love to add this talented nose tackle to an already dominant defense who added Jeramiah Owusu-Karamoah earlier in the draft.
- Denver Broncos – Kyle Trask, Quarterback (Florida)
It seems like the Drew Lock era is coming to an end in Denver. John Elway has always loved the big bodied strong-armed quarterbacks, and he stays consistent with his selection of Trask. I like Kyle Trask especially with the weapons that are on the Broncos roster already. Trask has all of the qualities of a starting NFL quarterback (mobility, strong arm, and deep ball accuracy) the main concerns are that he was a product of Kyle Pitts and Kadarious Toney. Him and Mac Jones are in a similar situation when being graded by talent evaluators, but in my opinion, Kyle Trask is a far superior prospect to Mac Jones.
- Dallas Cowboys – Ar’Darius Washington, Safety (TCU)
The Cowboys go defense again in the second round and this time they address a concern in their secondary. Washington is an undersized but incredibly productive safety who should be a turnover machine at the next level. The Cowboys struggled tremendously in pass defense last season, and with their first two selections being a pass rusher and a member of the secondary, the defense should be much improved next season.
- New York Giants – Walker Little, Offensive Tackle (Stanford)
The New York Giants need to do a better job at protecting Daniel Jones as well as creating open lanes for Saquon Barkley to run through. Walker Little is a giant tackle standing at six foot seven and should be the starting right tackle for the Giants. At Stanford, Little was exposed to a pro-style offense which should make the transition to the NFL very easy. I love this pick for the Giants because it helps to reestablish a physical presence on the offensive line.
- San Francisco 49ers – Amon-Ra St. Brown, Wide Receiver (USC)
The 49ers have a tremendous roster with very few holes in it. The one position that they could use more help at is the receiver position, and that is what they will get with St. Brown. He is capable of running most of the routes in the tree and should give Jimmy G a go to target on the outside. The 49ers could also go for a corner or a another running back, the other prospect I could see them taking is Travis Etienne from Clemson.
- Los Angeles Chargers – Jackson Carmen, Offensive Tackle (Clemson)
With the emergence of Justin Herbert last season, the Chargers have to do their best to protect their young superstar quarterback. Carmen had a couple of solid seasons at Clemson going against the hardest competition college football has to offer. Carmen could be the starting left tackle for the Chargers next season as he has demonstrated a tremendous ability at pass protecting.
- Jacksonville Jaguars (Via Minnesota Vikings) – Payton Turner, Edge Rusher (Houston)
This is the last of the Jaguars four selections in the first two rounds and I think they hit a homerun with all four of them. Turner is a massive edge rusher who prefers to put his hand in the dirt and get after the passer. At the University of Houston last season, Turner showed an ability to fly past the tackles and overpower any help blockers in the backfield. It seemed that snapped. The Jaguars addressed all of their needs on the defensive end getting two playmakers in the secondary and a tenacious pass rusher. I expect this team to have a bounce-back season and content for the AFC South title.
- New England Patriots – Pat Freiermuth, Tight End (Penn State)
The Patriots are in a tough spot with the assumed departure of Cam Newton, and middle of the round selections that prevent the acquisition of a top tier quarterback talent. The Patriots got the steal of the draft in the first round by selecting the electric Ja’Marr Chase, and here in the second round they select another offensive weapon. Freiermuth is a big bodied tight end who excels in the middle of the field. Whoever ends up taking snaps for them next season will have several weapons in the passing game. If Kyle Trask ends up sliding to this pick, I think the Patriots would take him as their future quarterback.
- Arizona Cardinals – Levi Onwuzurike, Defensive Tackle (Washington)
The Cardinals had a serious problem stopping the run last year and it was due to a lack of interior size. Onwuzurike is not the biggest defensive tackle but plays much bigger than he is. He is a three down defensive tackle who can stop the run as well as rush the passer on third down. This selection gives the cardinals an additional pass rusher to help hunt down the other talented quarterbacks in the division.
- Las Vegas Raiders – Daviyon Nixon, Defensive Tackle (Iowa)
The Raiders use their first two draft choices on defensive lineman because of how pathetic their pass rush was last year. In the first round they selected the prototypical edge rusher in Jayson Oweh, and here in the second round they take a big physical defensive tackle to anchor the middle of the line. If possible, the Raiders should use all of their draft choices on the defensive side of the ball if they want any chance of competing in the AFC anytime soon.
- Miami Dolphins – Travis Etienne, Running back (Clemson)
This is the Dolphins fifth and final selection in the first two rounds. They have addressed needs on both sides of the ball, and with this pick they bolster their backfield talent. Brian Flores has made it clear that he wants to be a physical run heavy offense that plays tremendous defense and wins with a grit and grind style. Etienne offers another talented runningback, as well as a gifted receiver out of the backfield. This would be a huge pickup for the Dolphins because it gives the Dolphins versatility in the passing game. Etienne has shown the power to run between the tackles as well as the speed to make plays on the outside whether it is a handoff or a screen pass. Tua would be very happy to have this young man line up behind him every Sunday for the next five years.
- Washington Football Team – Terrance Marshall Jr., Wide Receiver (LSU)
The Washington Football Team used its first-round pick on Mac Jones and now in the second round it gets him an explosive weapon on the outside. Terrance Marshall is a tall fast wide receiver who can get separation down the field and excels as a deep threat. Mac Jones should have a good rookie campaign thanks to this new receiving core that includes Terry McLaurin, Terrance Marshall, and Steven Sims.
- Chicago Bears – Tylan Wallace, Wide Receiver (Oklahoma State)
Allen Robinson is an impending free agent who is expected to take his talents elsewhere, and that would leave a huge hole in the Bears receiving core. Wallace would be primarily playing in the slot but shows the vertical speed and agility to thrive at the next level. I would not be surprised to see him returning kickoffs and punts like he did in college a year ago. The Bears really need an interior offensive lineman, but there aren’t any that are expected to be drafted this early.
- Indianapolis Colts – Rashod Weaver, Edge Rusher (Pittsburgh)
This will be the Colts first selection of the 2021 NFL draft because of their trade for Matthew Stafford. Rashod Weaver is a quick, agile defensive end whose primary job would be to get after the quarterback. It is honestly a shock to many that Weaver has slid all the way to 53, but it is a testament to the depth of edge rushers in this draft. In most years, Weaver would be a mid-first round selection.
- Tennessee Titans – Liam Eichenberg, Offensive Tackle (Notre Dame)
Last season the Titans used their first-round pick on a right tackle following the departure of Jack Conklin, but it seems that Isiah Wilson will end up being a complete bust. Eichenberg offers a big physical right tackle who would make it even easier for Derrick Henry to terrorize opposing defenses. Eichenberg can be flat footed at times so he may struggle at pass protection from time to time, but he is a mauler in the run game who should abuse undersized edge rushers. This is the kind of selection that head coach Mike Vrabel would love, as he continues to instill a physical culture in the Titans locker room.
- Seattle Seahawks – Joseph Ossai, Edge Rusher (Texas)
This selection is the first for the Seahawks in this draft because of the Jamal Adams trade that was executed during the season. Prior to the trade of Carlos Dunlap, the Seahawks had the worst pass rush in all of football, and with Dunlap being a potential free agent Ossai is the pick here. Ossai reminds me of another Seahawk draft pick from a couple years back in Frank Clark. Ossai is a tenacious pass rusher who can play standing up or with his hand in the dirt and should give the Seahawks a versatile pass rusher for years to come.
- Pittsburgh Steelers – Landon Dickerson, Center (Alabama)
Maurkice Pouncey has announced his retirement following a potential hall of fame career, and that leaves the Steelers with a huge hole in the middle of their offensive line. Landon Dickerson is a versatile lineman who is able to play center as well as both of the guard positions. The Steelers would love to be able to have the chance to select Dickerson who may be off of the board before this selection, and I expect him to make multiple pro bowls in a long career.
- Los Angeles Rams – Jalen Mayfield, Offensive Tackle (Michigan)
The Rams, much like the Steelers, are using their second-round pick to replace aging and potentially retired offensive lineman. I expect the Rams starting left tackle Andrew Whitworth to announce his retirement, and in doing so means the rams need to find someone to protect Jared Goff’s blind side. Jalen Mayfield should probably play right tackle, but I think he has the footwork and quickness to play left tackle and protect the Rams franchise quarterback.
- Cleveland Browns – Andre Cisco, Safety (Syracuse)
The Cleveland Browns have one of the best rosters top to bottom in the entire NFL. They have several pro bowl linemen, a superstar running back, and a promising young quarterback. The selection of Andre Cisco is a case of simply taking the best player available. At Syracuse he flashed incredible potential flying from sideline to sideline, but his major knock is inconsistency. This pick has boom bust potential, but the potential reward is a top-notch safety on a rookie contract.
- Baltimore Ravens – Creed Humphrey, Interior Offensive Lineman (Oklahoma)
Future hall of fame guard Marshall Yanda announced his retirement two years ago and the inside of the Raven’s line has not recovered. The Ravens need to fill this role by selecting a center who has the agility and power to affect the run game. Humphrey has shown the ability to be quick on his feet and occasionally pull for outside run designs. This pick would be huge for the Ravens because it bolsters an already tremendous offensive line, and this would only help Lamar Jackson by giving him time in the pocket when he drops back to pass.
- New Orleans Saints – Javonte Williams, Running Back (UNC)
With the retirement of Drew Brees, it seems that Jameis Winston will be taking snaps next season for the Saints. Sean Payton is likely to cut back on the passing game without a future hall of famer dropping back to pass for him, and that is why they will draft Javonte Williams. Latavius Murray is set to test free agency and the Saints need to find a complementary runner to the elusive Alvin Kamara. Williams set the college football world on fire last season torching every defense he came across, and with the dominant Saints offensive line, I expect similar results in the NFL.
- Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Marvin Wilson, Defensive Tackle (FSU)
Ndamukong Sue is thirty-four years old and I am not sure how many more seasons he can play at this level, so the Bucs need to start things about the future of the defensive line. In the first round they selected another talented defensive lineman in Jaelen Phillips, but Marvin Wilson will give them a dominant interior presence for years to come. Wilson is a large defensive tackle who excels at getting after the quarterback and should be able to start right away next to Ndamukong Sue.
- Buffalo Bills – Jevon Holland, Cornerback (Oregon)
Going into the draft the Bills had two true needs, a right tackle and a starting caliber cornerback. In this mock they address both of these issues with their first two selections. Alex Leatherwood will start right away at right tackle, and Jevon Holland is a lanky corner who has the size to cover any receiver he lines up across from. The Bills would have their pick at corner as there are several left that should be picked in the late second early third round, but I like the fit for Holland because of his physical style of play that embodies Buffalo.
- Green Bay Packers – Sage Surratt, Wide Receiver (Wake Forest)
After going defense in the first round, the Packers try to find a number two receiver to help make Devonte Adams job a little easier. Surratt is a big target who thrives in the RedZone in one-on-one matchups. Aaron Rodgers will love the Packers getting him another weapon, and Surratt will look really good catching passes from one of the greatest quarterbacks to ever lace them up.
- Kansas City Chiefs – Kingsley Enagbare, Edge Rusher (South Carolina)
The defending champs will continue to look for positions of need on cheap rookie contracts, and they get a steal with Enagbare. He has an explosive first step and will immediately contribute for this defense. He is big enough to defend the run but has the speed to hold contain and get after the quarterback. The champs just keep getting better, and it will be interesting to see what other steals they may get later on in the draft.
- Miami Dolphins – The Dolphins won this draft. They were able to trade back out of the third pick while still taking the same player they were going to take regardless (Devonte Smith) and acquire a second round selection (Alim McNeil) as well as a future first round pick. They used their other picks on several starters for a solid roster. Jeremiah Owusu-Karamoah, Alijah Vera-Tucker, Alim McNeil, and Devonte Smith will all be starters who will be able to contribute immediately. Travis Etienne will compete for the starting running back job, and will make Tua Tagovailoa’s job much easier as a reliable weapon out of the backfield. This is the perfect draft for the Dolphins.
- Pittsburgh Steelers – The Steelers were winners for the simple fact that they filled their two biggest positions of need. I think trading up for Trey Lance will end up being the biggest move of this entire draft if he ends up being a franchise quarterback. I project him as a Deshaun Watson type of player with the combination of mobility and deep ball accuracy, Trey Lance will make the Steelers better even if he has to sit out for a year being Big Ben. Landon Dickerson would have probably been a first round selection last year if he had not gotten injured this season, but for the Steelers, they get a big physical center who can anchor the offensive line for the next decade.
- Jacksonville Jaguars – With a solid draft, Urban Meyer has the Jaguars rebuild off to a great start. Trevor Lawrence is the best college quarterback prospect I have seen since Andrew Luck in 2012. The Jaguars used their other three picks on the defensive side of the ball (Jayce Horn, Trevon Moehrig, and Payton Turner) who should all be starters day one and contribute. This is the team I am most excited to watch going into next season.
- Indianapolis Colts – I felt last year that the Colts were a quarterback away from Superbowl contention, and in this draft, they got their franchise guy in Matthew Stafford. I really like Rashod Weaver and he could potentially be the steal of the draft. This Colts team should be able to contend with anyone else in the AFC next season.
- New England Patriots – The Patriots pick up Ja’Marr Chase who should be a terrific pro bowl level talent at wide receiver, but they should have used this pick on a quarterback. The most important position in all of sports is quarterback, and the Patriots have absolutely have no idea who theirs is going into next year.
- San Francisco 49ers – I do not have any faith in Jimmy Garoppolo’s ability to lead this team to another Superbowl appearance and going into the draft I thought the 49ers should try their best to get Trey Lance. The Steelers jumped in front of San Francisco to grab Lance. I really like the physicality that Christian Darrisaw gives the 49ers, but ultimately this sport comes down to the better quarterback and because of that, the 49ers are losers in this draft.
- Atlanta Falcons – For the same reason as the 49ers, the Falcons are losers in this draft. They need to do everything in their power to make sure that Justin Fields is wearing black and red next season no matter how much they have to give up getting him. Patrick Surtain II will be the best corner to come out of this draft, and I think he can be a perennial pro bowler for the Falcons, but they have to find a replacement for the aging Matt Ryan.
- Washington Football Team – I simply do not like Mac Jones as an NFL prospect. I do not think that he has the arm talent nor the mobility to be a dynamic playmaker at the next level. I think Kyle Trask has a much higher ceiling than Mac Jones, but for some reason many experts have Mac Jones going in the middle of the first round. The Washington Football Team needs to acquire a franchise quarterback, but I do not think Mac Jones is the answer so as far as I am concerned this is a wasted first round pick.