2021 NFL Mock Draft Vendetta Sports Media: Burroughs’s Edition
It’s the most wonderful time of year. The time of year where we get flooded with all sorts of mock drafts, judging people for their picks and taking our best guesses where players will go. We at Vendetta have put out mocks, including our most recent one, but let me have a go. Here is my 2021 NFL Mock Draft
In this mock, I will be including trades as well.
#1 Jacksonville Jaguars- Trevor Lawrence (QB, Clemson)
It is the easiest pick potentially in NFL history. Trevor Lawrence is a once in a multigenerational talent unlike we have seen probably since Andrew Luck. The chance to coach Lawrence brought Urban Meyer out of retirement. Time will tell if Meyer is successful in the NFL, but he has the best chance to find success with Lawrence at the helm of his team.
#2 New York Jets- Zach Wilson (QB, BYU)
A no-brainer again here for the Jets. The writing has been on the wall that the Jets are taking a QB since the Sam Darnold trade. Zach Wilson is an interesting prospect because he didn’t really play tough competition but man his tape, especially from his pro day, is incredible. He has the talent and the swagger to survive in New York. NOw it is up to the Jets organization not to fail him like they did Darnold.
#3 San Francisco 49ers- Mac Jones (QB, Alabama)
From the time the San Francisco 49ers mortgaged their future to move up from 12 to 3, it was clear they were taking a QB, but which one was the question. The answer? The ultimate game manager in Mac Jones. I don’t see the hype around him. He has decent arm strength and average mobility, but he goes through reads really well. Kyle Shanahan wanted Cousins, now he gets the cheaper version here when he could have got him at 12.
#4 Denver Broncos- Justin Fields (QB, Ohio State)
Denver sends the farm to Atlanta to take their QB of the future
The first trade of my 2021 NFL Mock Draft! Denver finally gets their Quarterback here in the 2021 NFL Draft, seeing Fields falling and pulling the trigger with Atlanta. Drew Lock has not developed like the Broncos would have hoped, and John Elway is chomping at the bit to find “his guy”. Justin Fields has all the intangibles you want out of a QB and can make the reads you need. Plus, the guy is a freak athlete. He should thrive in Denver especially with the weapons he will have on offense.
#5 Carolina Panthers- Kyle Pitts (TE, Florida)
Cincinnati can’t pass up a king’s ransom for a king at TE
I understand that Cincinnati is old school and doesn’t like moving around, but Carolina sees Pitts at 5 and realizes if they don’t move up, someone else will. With Sam Darnold at the helm of this offense, they are missing one key piece to being a top-10 offense, and that piece is Kyle Pitts. Kyle Pitts is arguably the best TE prospect in the last decade or more and he has teams salivating over him. He will be an instant starter for the Panthers.
#6 Miami Dolphins- Ja’Marr Chase (WR, LSU)
Can we take a second to talk about how Ja’Marr Chase opted out for the 2020 season and he is still known as the best WR option in the 2021 NFL Draft? That is a testament to how good he is, and Miami gets their guy still after moving down. Giving Tua Tagovailoa all the help he can get is priority number one for the Dolphins, and they get him a true #1 receiver in the draft.
#7 Detroit Lions- Jaylen Waddle (WR, Alabama)
Detroit needs a lot of help. I mean, a lot of help. Newly acquired Quarterback Jared Goff does not have a lot of talent on offense, especially after losing Kenny Golladay. Drafting Jaylen Waddle gets Goff a burner on the outside and an underrated route runner. Defense could be the pick here or offensive line, but we have to get Goff the help he will need. In the end, it might not matter though.
#8 Cincinnati Bengals- Penei Sewell (OT, Oregon)
Cincinnati is doing backflips that they traded down and still got their guy. Penei Sewell is regarded at the premier tackle option in this years draft class, and the Bengals pick him here to protect Joe Burrow. If they can sure up the offensive line, Cincinnati could really content in the AFC North with guys like Joe Mixon and an underrated receiver corp with Tyler Boyd and Tee Higgins.
#9 Atlanta Falcons- Patrick Surtain II (CB, Alabama)
Taking their QB of the future is very tempting here, but with Matt Ryan signing an extension this offseason means Atlanta is committed to him, so they sure up the defense and get a true #1 corner in Surtain. The Falcons have a lot of holes on the defensive side of the ball, and the shutdown corner from Alabama helps sure up the secondary for Atlanta.
#10 New England Patriots- Trey Lance (QB, North Dakota State)
Bill gets his QB of the future, Dallas moves down
Trey Lance makes it 5 Quarterbacks in the top 10 picks with the New England Patriots moving up to take the strong arm talent out of North Dakota State. The case for Zach Wilson can be made for Lance here, not playing the best competition in college but the tape and his pro day makes him stand out. The Patriots got their stimulus check and their tax return back this offseason, spending record amounts of money in FA. Now the last potential piece is here for him in Trey Lance.
#11 New York Giants- Rashawn Slater (OT, Northwestern)
I was torn between Slater and reaching for Kwity Paye, but I don’t have a ton of faith in this edge rusher class, and I am super high on Slater. The Giants already got Daniel Jones a true #1 receiver in Kenny Golladay, and now the demand is protecting him. Rashawn Slater can play all 5 positions on the offensive line and should find great success at the next level. Sorry Alex Chick, Azeez Ojulari isn’t the pick here. The Giants get a stud in my 2021 NFL Mock Draft.
#12 Philadelphia Eagles- DeVonta Smith (WR, Alabama)
Does Howie Roseman screw this pick up? It’s a real possibility if you look at his track record. But the chance to pick up the 2020 Heisman Trophy Winner DeVonta Smith is too good to pass up. It is well known that the Eagles have needed help at receiver for years, and they get their guy here at 12. The 2021 NFL Draft is stocked with receiver talent, and they get a hell of a guy here.
#13 Los Angeles Chargers- Christian Darrisaw (OT, Virginia Tech)
Protecting stud young Quarterback Justin Herbert is king here, and landing one of the better tackles in the draft is too good to pass up. Taking some help on defense is intriguing here, adding Christian Darrisaw helps the offense for the Chargers.
#14 Las Vegas Raiders- Micah Parsons (LB, Penn State)
Raiders move up three spots with Vikings for premier LB
God, the Raiders need help on defense. But they also need help on the offensive line after getting rid of basically everyone. However, seeing Micah Parsons falling should intrigue them enough to move up and grab him. A range Linebacker out of Penn State, Parsons ran well in his pro day but has some off-the-field issues that might scare teams. Taking a chance on him here and making their linebacker corp stronger has to be in the plans for Las Vegas.
#15 Dallas Cowboys- Jaycee Horn (CB, South Carolina)
Trading down and collecting some picks helps a Dallas Cowboys team that needs help on the defensive side of the ball. Jaycee Horn is flying up draft boards, and for good reason. The CB out of South Carolina is a ball hawk, ultra-aggressive, and can solidify a young defensive backs room and help force turnovers. The NFC North doesn’t have the best talent at QB, so finding a guy that can pick off the ball is great for Dallas here. A potential steal for Dallas in my 2021 NFL Mock Draft.
#16 Arizona Cardinals- Greg Newsome II (CB, Northwestern)
Look at Northwestern having TWO first-round picks! The Arizona Cardinals need help in their secondary after getting rid of Patrick Peterson. Greg Newsome II played very well at Northwestern, having a natural feel for playing corner. He doesn’t have the top-end speed you would want, but he can defend and that’s what is important here.
#17 Minnesota Vikings- Alijah Vera-Tucker (OG, USC)
Similar to Cincinnati, Minnesota is ecstatic that they can trade down and still get their guy. Alijah Vera-Tucker is a guy who can play outside, but mostly plays inside at either guard position. Vera-Tucker is stronger in the run blocking game versus pass blocking, which means he should translate over to the NFL well, blocking for Dalvin Cook every Sunday.
#18 Miami Dolphins- Jamin Davis (LB, Kentucky)
The Miami Dolphins are in a unique spot here in the 2021 NFL Draft, because they don’t have a ton of needs but can use depth all over. Insert fast-rising prospect Jamin Davis out of Kentucky. Davis ran an impressive 4.41 in his 40 time and had a 42′ vertical. His tape pops, and while he only has 11 career starts, he showed a ton of potential here. Miami can let him either sit and learn NFL-style defense for a year or start him right away and see how he performs. A potentially surprising pick in my 2021 NFL Mock Draft.
#19 Washington Football Team- Kyle Trask (QB, Florida)
How about a little shock factor? This is what mock drafts are all about, and my 2021 NFL Mock Draft is no different. Washington Football Team desperately needs a quarterback. They weren’t able to trade up and get one of the big 5, so why not take 6 first-round QBs in this year’s draft. Trask has everything you want: 6’5, a big frame at 240lbs, and a cannon of an arm. His knocks are that he isn’t very mobile, and showed major inconsistencies in college in Florida. But pairing him with Ron Rivera might be beneficial for Trask. Maybe a bit of a reach, but hey, this is the draft who knows what will happen.
#20 Chicago Bears- Caleb Farley (CB, Virginia Tech)
With the departure of Kyle Fuller to Denver this offseason, it leaves the Chicago Bears in a spot where cornerback is a pressing issue. Enter Caleb Farley. While he may have some concerns coming into this year’s draft, it is hard to argue Farley isn’t talented. In a defense that has stud safety Eddie Jackson, he can learn how to play at the NFL level. It might help to put on a few pounds too.
#21 Indianapolis Colts- Kwity Paye (EDGE, Michigan)
This year’s class of edge rushers is not the best class there ever was, hence the first one coming off the board here at 21. Kwity Paye is very explosive off the ball and can cause havoc for offensive linemen. He will definitely have to work on his run-stopping abilities, but Paye should be just fine at the next level, coming into a strong defensive unit in Indianapolis.
#22 Tennessee Titans- Rashod Bateman (WR, Minnesota)
Tennessee is set on defense, that isn’t an issue. They can go offensive line here, but this draft has such depth they can get a solid player later. This is about helping out Ryan Tannehill and taking pressure off of AJ Brown. Rashod Bateman has the size and frame to be a legit second option in Tennessee and a red zone threat. Look for him to have a very solid first year.
#23 New York Jets- Teven Jenkins (OT, Oklahoma State)
The New York Jets picked up Quarterback of the future in Zach Wilson earlier in the draft, so let’s protect him with Teven Jenkins. Jenkins is athletic and can play inside at guard or outside at tackle. He has shorter arms which would typically suggest playing guard, but his foot speed makes him able to play on the outside. At this point, it’s about helping Zach Wilson as much as you can.
#24 Pittsburgh Steelers- Najee Harris (RB, Alabama)
I understand that the bigger need in Pittsburgh is OL. But with Jenkins off the board, I don’t love Cosmi or Humphrey here. The Steelers, after losing James Connor to FA, have a glaring need at RB as well, insert the best back in the draft in Najee Harris. Harris is a battering ram, who got better as a receiving back while at Alabama and who is faster than some might expect. An instant starter for Pittsburgh.
#25 Jacksonville Jaguars- Trevon Moehrig (S, TCU)
Jacksonville, after getting their franchise QB earlier, go best available player here and sure up their secondary with the best safety in the class in Trevon Moehrig. Moehrig possesses closing speed and is hyper-aggressive for passes, sometimes too aggressive. A quality run defender as well, he is sure to translate well in the NFL.
#26 Cleveland Browns- Azeez Ojulari (EDGE, Georgia)
I know that Cleveland signed Jadevon Clowney today, but that is a shorter deal and this pick would give Ojulari time to develop his skills behind two stud pass rushers. Ojulari shows a ton of promise rushing the passer, but needs to work on his ability to get by tackles and to stop the run. He goes to a system where he can learn how to do just that. Only 2 edge players in my 2021 NFL Mock Draft.
#27 Baltimore Ravens- Samuel Cosmi (OT, Texas)
God I hate the Ravens.
Anyway, Baltimore needs receiving help. Hollywood Brown is ass, Sammy Watkins doesn’t bring anything to the table except hilarious quotes, and Lamar Jackson is showing why he was massively overrated. But there isn’t really a WR I love here for the Ravens. Get him some help on the line so he doesn’t have to scramble as much so he can show what an average passer he is. Moving right along….
#28 New Orleans Saints- Zaven Collins (LB, Tulsa)
With the departure of Kwon Alexander this offseason, the Saints have a glaring need at LB and boy do they get a solid player here in Zaven Collins. Collins doesn’t measure out as the fastest LB out there, but possesses closing speed and hits the hole with violent intent. Great instincts makes him a sure fire starter as a rookie for the Saints. A late faller and a steal for New Orleans.
#29 Green Bay Packers- Rondale Moore (WR, Purdue)
FINALLY, the Green Bay Packers get Aaron Rodgers first-round help, and they pick up one of the sleepers of this WR class in the 2021 NFL Draft. Rondale Moore is the perfect pick for the Packers because he instantly starts in the slot and learns from probably the best WR in the NFL in Davante Adams. You can argue CB here, especially how Kevin King looked in the NFC Championship Game, but let’s make Rodgers happy hereafter they screwed him over last year. Potentially the best pick in my 2021 NFL Mock Draft.
#30 Buffalo Bills- Christian Barmore (DT, Alabama)
The Buffalo Bills don’t have a ton of needs going into the draft this year, but one is certainly DT and they pick up the best DT in the class in Christian Barmore. Explosive off the line and very agile, he should do well in the AFC East who isn’t currently known for having the best running backs. The first and only DT in the first round in my 2021 NFL Mock Draft.
#31 Kansas City Chiefs- Alex Leatherwood (OT, Alabama)
The Kansas City Chiefs played ring around the rosie with their offensive line this offseason, losing Mitchell Schwartz and Eric Fisher but bringing in Kyle Long and Joe Thuney. But they can always get younger and more athletic in protecting the golden boy Patrick Mahomes, enter Alex Leatherwood. He will learn from some of the best how to finish blocks and he should put on the strength he was missing in college. A sneaky good pickup for the Chiefs.
#32 Tampa Bay Buccaneers- Eric Stokes (CB, Georgia)
Can we just skip over their pick? God I know I said I hate the Ravens but everyone hates Tom Brady. And I don’t want to help him or his team, but I like Eric Stokes as a late first-round talent so I will give him his credit. A ton of upside for the Georgia CB, possessing superior ball skills and a sure tackler.
This was my 2021 NFL Mock Draft! How’d I do? Feel free to comment below or tag me on Twitter!
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