Two-round rookie 1QB PPR mock draft
By: Joe Mason @JosephMason94
1.01 ”“ (WR) Ja’Marr Chase / WR / LSU
The best player in the draft deserves to go first. Most leagues will have Najee as the first player off the board due to positional need, but Chase is NFL ready, declared early, and lock in my opinion as the first wide receiver taken in the NFL draft. He also ran a 4.38 at his LSU pro day which is icing on the cake.
1.02 ”“ Najee Harris / RB / Alabama
Najee has a lot of analytics and physical traits on his side that project he will succeed at the next level. With the Arizona Cardinals moving on from Drake, and the Steelers looking primed to move on from Conner, I expect Harris to get a nice landing spot.
1.03 ”“ Javonte Williams / RB / UNC
Some of you will be surprised to see Williams go this early, especially before guys like Etienne. That being said, running backs tend to have more of an opportunity to produce right away compared to wide receivers. The need for high volume running backs forces Williams up my list and into the third slot.
1.04 ”“ Travis Etienne / RB / Clemson
Of the top three running backs in this class, Etienne has the most upside. A dream scenario landing spot with Mike Tomlin in Pittsburgh would put him in the discussion at 1.02. If Etienne lands somewhere that would complement his receiving ability, he could end up as the best back from this class.
1.05 ”“ Kyle Pitts / TE / Florida
Kyle Pitts is the second best WR in this class who just so happens to be playing tight end. His NFL comparison is Calvin Johnson and has a phenomenal wing span (83 3/8”). Letting him slide past 1.05 is criminal. In superflex tight end premium leagues you can make an argument for him at 1.02. Oh, and he’s only 20 years old.
1.06 ”“ DeVonta Smith / WR / Alabama
There is a reason Smith won the Heisman. There is a reason he led Alabama in receiving yards on their way to a national title. There is a reason he was the most productive WR in college this year. Do not let Smith’s smaller frame fool you.
1.07 ”“ Rashod Bateman / WR / Minnesota
Bateman might be the most NFL ready WR in this class. He is receiving NFL comparisons to Keenan Allen and also produced in 2019 alongside the Buccaneers draft pick Tyler Johnson who also played at Minnesota.
1.08 ”“ Jaylen Waddle / WR / Alabama
Waddle is a very intriguing prospect. He played opposite DeVonta Smith but missed most of the 2020 season due to an injury. I expect him to be a late first/early second round draft selection in late April. Also, check out this insane catch he made earlier this year:
1.09 ”“ Rondale Moore / WR / Purdue
Moore reminds me a lot like Deebo Samuel, someone who is tough to tackle and elusive in the open field. He ran a lot of slant routes in college so look for him to develop a more complex route tree if he wants to succeed in the NFL.
1.10 ”“ Kenneth Gainwell / RB / Memphis
Gainwell ends the WR run here late in the first. Memphis is putting out yet another impressive rookie running back, following in the footsteps of Darrell Henderson, Tony Pollard, and Antonio Gibson.
1.11 ”“ Amon-Ra St. Brown / WR / USC
The younger brother of Green Bay Packers WR Equanimeous St. Brown, Amon-Ra played three years at USC and scored seven touchdowns in six games in 2020. His father, John Brown, is a body builder and two-time Mr. Universe.
1.12 ”“ Terrace Marshall / WR / LSU
Marshall also ran a 4.38 at his LSU pro day and is now being discussed with first round draft potential. He caps off the first-round rookie draft as the eighth pass catcher. This 2021 class is very deep.
2.01 ”“ Chuba Hubbard / RB / Oklahoma State
Chuba had an incredible 2019 season but put up moderate production in 2020. This has caused him to slip out of the first round of rookie drafts. I have him at 2.01 because I believe the talent is there and you can get him at a discount in drafts.
2.02 ”“ Kadarius Toney / WR / Florida
There is a lot of variance when it comes to where to rank Toney. I have seen him go as early as late first and as late as undrafted. Some analytics I’ve seen show him as a high risk to bust. If you want him and he’s someone on your radar, you will have to spend a high second rounder to draft him.
2.03 ”“ Michael Carter / RB / UNC
Carter is the second RB to be taken from North Carolina. Williams has the size which makes him the preferred choice, but Carter should be a value in all formats. He would be a great compliment to San Francisco’s backfield.
2.04 ”“ Trevor Lawrence / QB / Clemson
Trevor Lawrence is the best QB prospect since Andrew Luck. No matter how good a quarterback is, I cannot justify taking him in the first round of a 1QB league. The early to mid-second round is a nice landing spot for a team that is weak at the QB position and can benefit from a guy who should be dominant in this league for many years. He is the only QB taken in this two round mock draft and currently the only one projected to start right away.
2.05 ”“ Elijah Moore / WR / Ole Miss
Moore has risen up the pre-draft rankings over the past few weeks. As analysts begin to dive into the prospect film, they begin to see NFL potential. A.J. Brown has been lobbying to the Titans to draft his former Ole Miss teammate to reunite them in Nashville.
2.06 ”“ Pat Freiermuth / TE / Penn State
The second TE off the board is Freiermuth out of Penn State. There is a reason they call him “Baby Gronk”. Freiermuth runs extremely well including impressive athletic ability for a 260-pound human being.
2.07 ”“ Tylan Wallace / WR / Oklahoma State
At 6’0” 185 pounds with a 4.44 40 time, Wallace can move and is also very physical. Look at the video below how he maintains his balance and keeps his speed and is able to break multiple tackles to take it to the house.
2.08 ”“ Jermar Jefferson / RB / Oregon State
The best running back in the Pac-12 is Jefferson. One thing that stands out with him is his vision. Once he finds a hole he is able to jump-cut and turn on the jets to take it to the house.
2.09 ”“ Dyami Brown / WR / UNC
The third Tar-heel off the board in the draft is Dyami Brown. He is a very underrated WR and has some things to work on but has a promising NFL career.
2.10 ”“ Brevin Jordan / TE / Miami
At only 20 years old, Jordan is a bit young but he actually broke out at a very young age. He had a very consistent career at Miami posting 105/1358/13 over three seasons. He needs to develop more to be NFL ready, but has some impressive raw talent.
2.11 ”“ Kylin Hill / RB / Mississippi State
The four-year man out of Mississippi State broke out in 2019 and contributed 29% of Mississippi State’s total offensive yards. He runs hard and reminds me of Chris Carson.
2.12 ”“ Dwayne Eskridge / WR / Western Michigan
Eskridge played five years at Western Michigan with his best season coming in 2020 where he put up 34/784/8 averaging a whopping 23 yards per catch. He broke his collarbone in 2019 but had solid 2017 & 2018 seasons having at least 30/506/3 in both. He is a bit older but he is more NFL ready than most wideouts in this draft.