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2021

Daniel Alameda’s Mock Draft 2.0

The NFL’s “COVID” season has come and gone in the blink of an eye, and now everyone’s attention turns to the NFL Draft. Whether it’s mock drafts, big boards, prospect breakdowns, or simply hot takes, we have all of our NFL Draft Content here at TWSN. 

DIsclaimer: Due to there being two months before the draft, I will surely not try and predict any trades as that would immediately invalidate this mock, but instead give my best estimate on what each team SHOULD do in the 1st round. Note the key word “SHOULD” so if your team’s GM doesn’t listen, shame on them. 

This is my 2nd official Mock Draft of the season and I have much more on the way so feel free to reach out on my Twitter.

  1. Jacksonville Jaguars QB Trevor Lawrence, Clemson – This is a no brainer pick here for the Jaguars as they get one of the best QB prospects to enter the draft in recent memory. Trevor Lawrence gives “DUVAL” a major sign or hope, and with $100 million+ in cap space this offseason, the future’s looking bright for the Jaguars.
  2. New York Jets Zach QB Wilson, BYU- The Jets currently have three options here: Trade for Deshaun Watson, draft a QB in hopes that he’ll become their star, or keep Darnold as your QB and take the best player available. Since it’s far too early to be predicting draft-day trades, I’ll go with option B as the best choice. Yes, there have been reports about the Jets sticking with Darnold but with a premium draft selection being as rare as it is, the Jets take a shot here with Wilson.
  3. Miami Dolphins OT Penei Sewell, Oregon- Miami is in a perfect spot with the #3 overall pick as they can either trade the pick for Watson, draft a playmaker, or take the top offensive lineman. With no trades in this mock, they decide to build their offensive line and attack the playmaking side of things later in the draft. The Dolphins add an absolute mauler and generational talent to a youthful offensive line in hopes of building an ideal situation around Tua.
  4. Atlanta Falcons LB Micah Parsons, Penn State – I know Falcons fans would love to see a QB here, but with Matt Ryan under contract for two more years, expect for them to go with the best player available on the defensive side of the ball. Another option was going the CB route but Parsons provides too much dynamic athleticism which will be a major factor right away alongside stud Deion Jones. Parsons instincts and versatility to play in various different roles of a defense will give the Falcons new HC and GM a major chess piece to play with. The only issue is there have been rumors floating around that his “character issues” will drop him in the draft, but until those are confirmed, he stays in the top-10.
  5. Cincinnati Bengals WR Ja’Marr Chase, LSU – While Bengals fans around the country have been eyeing Penei Sewell, they might not have a chance at him anymore, and their focus now turns to surrounding Joe Burrow with playmakers. As far as playmaking goes, there’s no better way to accomplish this than by selecting a player who put up 60+ receptions and 1800+ yards just a year ago. Chase’s ability to thrive on intermediate and short route concepts will give Burrow a sense of consistency and a safety blanket for the Bengals franchise quarterback.
  6. Philadelphia Eagles CB Patrick Surtain II, Alabama – The Eagles have major questions to answer about this organization such as Doug Pederson’s future, Carson Wentz, and what to do about the aging offensive line, but there is one thing we know for sure: they need offensive weapons. With that being said, they’ll draft cornerback Patrick Surtain III. The Eagles hired former Colts defensive backs coach Jonathon Gannon who most often utilizes a cover two man scheme, a system that works best with two dominant man corners, and the Eagles would have that in Darius Slay and Surtain. 
  7. Detroit Lions WR Devonta Smith, Alabama- After trading away Matthew Stafford for Jared Goff and draft capital, most would expect for them to draft a quarterback, but I have a hunch that they believe in Goff to be their long-term starter. If they believe in Goff, the only way for him to succeed is to surround him with talent, and adding the Heisman Trophy winner Devonta Smith accomplishes just that. It’s tough to pass on a quarterback at this spot, but Smith gives the Lions a surefire stud that will contribute day one, and hopefully lessen the blow of losing Kenny Golloday/Marvin Jones/Danny Amendola.
  8. Carolina Panthers QB Justin Fields, Ohio State – Yes the Panthers signed Bridgewater to a three year contract for 63 million dollars, but given their option to get out of his contract after 2021, he’s the perfect veteran QB to segway Carolina into their next phase of the rebuild. After talking with coach Matt Rhule at the Senior Bowl, he describes his “Ideal Quarterback” as a guy with all the arm talent, mobility to extend plays outside of the pocket, a leader, and a guy who has shown up on the biggest stage. Insert Justin Fields. This selection could be either Fields or Lance, but Fields is going to give the Panthers a higher level of security as Fields was the number one high school prospect in his class and has two years of terrific college production. The Fields era starts in Carolina.
  9. Denver Broncos CB Caleb Farley, Virginia Tech – You’ll definitely be hearing fans vouching for a new QB to replace Drew Lock, but as long as Vic Fangio is the HC, this defense will be the powerhouse of the team. Having Farley fall to 10 is an absolute steal for Denver as he’s my CB1 and has immense potential. Despite recently transitioning to cornerback from the wide receiver position, he put out the best film of this class, and would be the number two behind Jeff Okudah last year. I know Broncos fans don’t want to deal with another rookie cornerback, but Farley has the potential to be a lockdown corner for years to come. 
  10. Dallas Cowboys OL Rashawn Slater, Northwestern – The Cowboys as a whole seem to be in absolute turmoil, but with all odds on Dak Prescott returning to the team healthy next year, they should be looking to keep him healthy. Last season, seven of Dallas’s ten offensive lineman ended on the injured reserve, and despite most of them returning, they are aging fast. Slater gives them a prospect who has experience playing every position on the line so they can build him to wherever they deem best. 
  11. New York Giants WR Jaylen Waddle, Alabama – The Giants have two major needs: a pass rush and an “X” receiver. Waddle gives the most bang for their buck at #11. The Alabama receiver may not have the resume of Smith or Chase, but he had a magnificent start to his season before getting injured. The biggest question mark around Waddle is his ability to take on a bigger share of the offense and he displayed that ability with six receptions and 140 yards per game this season. 
  12. San Francisco 49ers CB Jaycee Horn, South Carolina – The 49ers are definitely in the market for a QB, but if they can’t select one of the top four, then they turn their attention to the biggest need: cornerback. Jaycee Horn is a corner who shot up the boards after one of the most dominating performances of the season against Auburn with four pass deflections and two interceptions against a NFL prospect in Seth Williams. The 49ers cornerback group is extremely thin with Richard Sherman becoming a free agent, and Horn gives this roster a physical specimen who thrives in man-to-man coverage. 
  13. Los Angeles Chargers OT Christian Darrisaw, Virginia Tech – The Chargers major priority this offseason needs to be building around their franchise QB Justin Herbert, and while Jaylen Waddle would be a fun selection here. Championship teams are built in the trenches. Darrisaw is a terrific lineman prospect and immediately gives the Chargers a franchise LT to keep Herbert off of the ground.
  14. Minnesota Vikings  EDGE Gregory Rousseau, Miami – The Vikings could be looking to go offensive line here, but with the defense being a bottom five unit in 2020, they can’t afford for that to repeat. Rousseau dominated in college purely off of his freakish athleticism, and will need to develop a broader pass rushing repertoire to succeed at the next level. Luckily for him, if he lands with the Vikings he gets to learn the ropes from a top DE in Danielle Hunter.
  15. New England Patriots QB Mac Jones, Alabama – The Patriots are in uncharted territory after being knocked out of the playoff race for the first time in 15 years, which makes this pick much more important. The New England offense desperately needs playmakers but with the top talents being off the board, they draft their potential franchise QB. Cam Newton isn’t the answer and neither is Jarrett Stidham, and with Bill Belichick’s ties to Alabama head coach Nick Saban, this pick makes all the world of sense. Jones fits the bill for Bill as he is an intelligent quarterback capable of working within a system and leading his team inside the locker room and on the field. Trey Lance is obviously an option, but Jones fits this team like a glove.
  16. Arizona Cardinals TE Kyle Pitts, Florida – The Cardinals need playmakers to pair with DeAndre Hopkins, and they need them badly. There is great value here with pass rushers so an EDGE like Carlos Basham or Joseph Ossai could be in play, but they have their pick between two Florida playmakers, and an Alabama one with Jaylen Waddle. After seeing what Travis Kelce and Rob Gronkowski did in the Super Bowl, and having Pitts fall out of the top-10, Steve Kiem would be ecstatic to pair his young quarterback with a sure-fire weapon like Kyle Pitts. The Cardinals offense heavily utilizes their tight ends in the pass game so Pitts will slide right in
  17. Las Vegas Raiders EDGE Azeez Ojulari, Georgia – The Raiders had a surprisingly successful 2020, but it didn’t end in the playoff berth they hoped for. Their lackluster pass rush was a major culprit for this, so they add an ultra-athletic pass rusher that finished 2020 as one of the most talented in college football. Despite lacking true refinement in his technique, NFL teams have a knack for drafting edge rushers with elite athletic traits and Ojulari is no different. 
  18. Miami Dolphins RB Najee Harris, Alabama – With their second selection of the 1st round, Miami can go in any direction that they wish, so they decide to get a running back that dominated college football. While selecting a RB in the first round isn’t ideal, Brian Flores is looking to build a championship contending team ASAP, and Harris has the skills to gain 1500+ yards from scrimmage his rookie season. Insert him here as their workhorse back. 
  19. Washington Football Team WR Rashod Bateman, Minnesota –  Washington is currently fielding a top five unit on the defensive side of the ball, so the focus will be on the offensive side. They could go offensive tackle here but Bateman has the build of a legit “X” receiver with his 6’2 frame and superb catch radius which will create a deadly duo with Scary Terry. Whoever Washington selects to be their QB for 2021 will have a terrific supporting cast of Antonio Gibson, Bateman, McLaurin and Logan Thomas, a step in the right direction for this offense. 
  20. Chicago Bears OT Samuel Cosmi, Texas – With Allen Robinson hitting free agency and the offensive line a mess, the Bears will be attacking the offensive side of the ball. With the uncertainty at the QB position and the rest of the offense, the Bears need to fortify the offensive line to build some continuity on this team, and the Texas tackle is a step in the right direction. 
  21. Indianapolis Colts QB Trey Lance, NDSU– The Colts have built a well-rounded roster from the trenches up, and despite having mocked a receiver here in my first mock draft, they get a gift of Lance falling into their lap. After the retirement of Phillip Rivers, and the rumours about Carson Wentz heading to Chicago, the Colts are in desperate need of a quarterback. Lance gives them a prospect with all the physical tools and footwork needed to succeed, and he steps into terrific citation to thrive from day one. Whether he starts right away or not, Lance gives the Colts front office major hope for the future. 
  22. Tennessee Titans EDGE Carlos Basham Jr. Wake Forest – The Titans pass rush was embarrassing in 2020, and there is a major need to immediately upgrade it. Carlos Basham has seen his stock skyrocket after an excellent week at the Senior Bowl, and now is firmly in the top-tier of pass rushers in this class. Basham lacks the elite bend of and athleticism of other edge rushers, but he was extremely productive and has a well-refined skill set that will enable him to step in and take Tennessee’s mind off of a failed Jadeveon Clowney experiment. 
  23. New York Jets WR Kadarius Toney, Florida – With the Jets in massive need of a playmaker, they get one of College Football’s most electric playmakers in Kadarius Toney. The Florida receiver’s stock had a major jump in 2021 due to his improvements as a downfield receiving threat in addition to his explosiveness with the ball in his hands. After drafting Denzel Mims last offseason, New York needs to add playmakers, and Toney’s YAC ability is out of this world, whether it’s evading defenders with his quickness or running right through them. 
  24. Pittsburgh Steelers OT Dillon Radunz, NDSU- The Steelers have severely regressed after their 11-0 start to the season, and this is in large part due to their abysmal offense. The exciting pick would be a QB like Kyle Trask here, but with Pittsburgh losing three starting lineman to free agency, they need to replenish the talent. Radunz is seen by many as a risky selection due to the level of competition he faced at NDSU, but after seeing his success at the Senior Bowl, teams are going to be confident in selecting him in the first. He has the frame, athleticism, and power to dominate at the next level, and has looked the part of a franchise lineman. 
  25. Jacksonville Jaguars IOL Alijah Vera-Tucker, USC – After selecting their franchise QB number one overall, it’s necessary to protect him up front, as evidenced by Joe Burrow’s rookie campaign without an adequate line. Jacksonville takes a versatile lineman who may not have the upside of Ohio State IOL Wyatt Davis, but will give them the versatility to play all 5 positions on the line. 
  26. Cleveland Browns LB Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah, Notre Dame – The Cleveland Browns enter the offseason riding their high horses after a playoff victory, and here they add a linebacker with elite sideline-to-sideline speed. This is a perfect example of when talent meets need as Cleveland needs a linebacker to counteract the talents of Joe Burrow and Lamar Jackson. JOK’s playstyle isn’t that of a traditional “MIKE” linebacker, but rather a backer used all over the formation with his explosiveness as his best trait. 
  27. Baltimore Ravens EDGE Kwity Paye, Michigan – Throughout the offseason you’ll hear fans call for the sexy pick of a receiver, but in order for Lamar Jackson and the Ravens offense to continue dominating the league, they have to dominate the line of scrimmage. Paye is an ultra-athletic edge rusher who dominated the BIG-10 and will develop next to the veteran talents on the roster, and the culture in the locker room.
  28. New Orleans Saints S Paris Ford, Pittsburgh – The Saints are in an interesting spot with Drew Brees mulling retirement, and getting knocked out of the playoffs early, but they add one of my favorite players in the draft. Pittsburgh’s Paris Ford is currently projected as a third round pick but his hard-hitting play-style combined with the ability to play as a single high safety gives the Saints another diverse talent in the secondary. 
  29. Green Bay Packers CB Asante Samuel Jr. Florida State – The Packers should look to shore up either their rushing defense or their secondary, but after getting torched by the Buccaneers in the NFCCG, they’ll go secondary here. Samuel Jr. is one of my draft crushes for 2021 as he displayed his potential all throughout his collegiate career. The way I describe Samuel Jr. is magnetic, as he’s technically sound and rarely caught out of position. He’s a tad undersized at 5’10, but the Packers are going to fall in love with his ability to make the big hits, similar to his father, former NFL CB, Asante Samuel
  30. Buffalo Bills LB Jabrill Cox, LSU – With Matt Milano’s future with the team uncertain, they add a high-motored, athletic LB that can play the “MIKE” role. The biggest areas of concern with Cox is his ability to play through contact, but his sideline to sideline speed is absurd, and will fit right into the culture that Buffalo has built in recent years. 
  31. Kansas City Chiefs IOL Wyatt Davis, Ohio State – Offensive line is never a sexy selection but it is neccesary if you have a quarterback worth $500 million sitting back in the pocket. Wyatt Davis is my IOL #1 as he has dominated over the course of his career at OSU, and will give the Chiefs another stud to add to this line. After seeing their offensive line get demolished by injuries and the Buccaneers, it’s key that Kansas City emphasizes continuity on the offensive line, and Davis is a terrific addition this late in the first round.
  32. Tampa Bay Buccaneers IDL Marvin Wilson, Florida State – The Buccaneers defensive line displayed what an effective pass rush can do to the best quarterbacks in the league, so adding talent to this spot is a great first step to defending their championship. With Ndamukong Suh and Shaq Barrett entering free agency, Tampa Bay should look to add to their pass rush and Wilson’s elite physical tools are going to be enough for the Buccaneers to look past his inconsistent play and see his immense potential.

2021

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