The Indianapolis Colts have agreed to send a 2021 third-round pick and a conditional 2022 second-round (that could become a first-rounder) to the Philadelphia Eagles for quarterback Carson Wentz, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter.
With one quarterback need solved for the short-term in Indianapolis, how does this change the first round of the 2021 NFL draft?
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1. Jacksonville Jaguars — QB Trevor Lawrence, Clemson
Nothing changes here. The Jaguars still need a quarterback and Trevor Lawrence, despite my report that some teams have Zach Wilson rated higher, is still the pick.
2. New York Jets — QB Zach Wilson, BYU
Who the Jets prefer a quarterback remains a mystery, but the more news that comes out of Florham Park, the more it seems that Sam Darnold is on the trade market and the Gang Green will select a quarterback here. The league likes Wilson more than Justin Fields based on what I’m hearing.
3. Miami Dolphins (from Texans) — WR Ja’Marr Chase, LSU
I still believe this is a great trade spot for Miami; either sending this pick and others to the Houston Texans for Deshaun Watson or trading this pick to a quarterback-needy team. If they stay put, Chase is the best wide receiver for them in the draft class.
4. Atlanta Falcons — QB Justin Fields, Ohio State
My last mock draft had the Falcons taking tight end/offensive weapon Kyle Pitts (Florida) here and I do believe that’s still in play for them, but there is considerable buzz around the league this week that quarterback is enticing to the Falcons.
5. Cincinnati Bengals — OT Penei Sewell, Oregon
Get used to this prediction. If Sewell, the top tackle in this draft, is on the board he will be the pick for the Bengals as they look to protect Joe Burrow.
6. Philadelphia Eagles — QB Trey Lance, North Dakota State
If you aren’t sure your guy at quarterback is the guy, you better make a move to improve the position. The new Eagles’ head coaching staff is not tied to Jalen Hurts and general manager Howie Roseman is tied to no one, it seems. This wouldn’t be my pick—I’d give Hurts a year to prove himself and add DeVonta Smith (WR, Alabama), but this pick has a ton of buzz right now.
7. Detroit Lions — WR DeVonta Smith, Alabama
While not the biggest receiver, Smith is the smoothest in this draft class and has the best hands. The Lions have a need at the position regardless of what free agent Kenny Golladay does this off-season. With Jared Goff in the fold for at least 2021, the Lions have to go wide receiver early.
8. Carolina Panthers — TE Kyle Pitts, Florida
The Panthers would love to see a quarterback here, but none of value remain on the board and a reach for Mac Jones feels too desperate for a team that has plenty of time to rebuild. Instead, they add the most versatile pass-catcher in the draft and a major matchup problem in Kyle Pitts.
9. Denver Broncos — CB Patrick Surtain II, Alabama
The Broncos are heavily rumored to be invested in this quarterback class, but none of value is on the board with five selected already. Instead they tag the best cornerback in this class and an incredibly versatile, matchup defender in Alabama’s Surtain.
10. Dallas Cowboys — OT Rashawn Slater, Northwestern
I do think Dallas would consider CB Caleb Farley (Virginia Tech) here, but Slater is too good to pass up given the offensive line injuries the Cowboys have seen in recent years. He’s the left tackle of the future while able to stick at right tackle for the interim.
11. New York Giants — EDGE Gregory Rousseau, Miami
Don’t be surprised to see Rousseau’s name start to climb boards. Pass-rushers who are 6’7” and 265-pounds don’t come around very often. Those who post 19.5 TFLs and 15.5 sacks in their final year of college are very rare.
12. San Francisco 49ers — CB Caleb Farley, Virginia Tech
The 49ers miss out on the top end of the quarterback market and roll back into 2021 with Jimmy Garoppolo under center. But they add to the secondary, where Richard Sherman is highly unlikely to return, and grab a fast, athletic man coverage cornerback with physical press skills.
13. Los Angeles Chargers — OT Christian Darrisaw, Virginia Tech
This is a little early for Darrisaw, but the Chargers’ need to improve the offensive line can’t be ignored. Even though general manager Tom Telesco has never been one to value offensive linemen early in the draft, he has to get a long-term left tackle and the athletic Darrisaw gives him that.
14. Minnesota Vikings — WR Jaylen Waddle, Alabama
A pure “best player available” pick, and why not load up on wide receivers after seeing what Tampa Bay’s corps did to the Green Bay Packers’ defense? Waddle is a major home run threat and can line up either in the slot or split out wide to make sure Justin Jefferson doesn’t see double teams and the box never gets loaded for Dalvin Cook.
15. New England Patriots — LB Micah Parsons, Penn State
A fall for Parsons—I value him as a top 10 pick—but a perfect landing spot as the New England Patriots will utilize his unique skillset in a myriad of ways. He’s athletic, instinctive, strong and able to impact the game as a run-stuffer, pass-rusher and in zone coverage.
16. Arizona Cardinals — OL Alijah Vera-Tucker, USC
Keeping Kyler Murray on the field and protected has to be the goal for the 2021 Arizona Cardinals. Even with improved play from the tackles, the interior needs work. USC’s Alijah Vera-Tucker has dominated at both guard and tackle and is an immediate upgrade on the inside of the line.
17. Las Vegas Raiders — LB Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah, Notre Dame
The middle of the field on defense remains a problem for the Raiders despite spending plenty of dollars and draft picks on fixes. One way to solve their woes with tight ends is to grab the athletic, rangy linebacker Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah. He’s a tad undersized (listed at 218 pounds) but can add weight and still maintain his agility and speed. He’s also a major matchup issue for offensive coordinators in space.
18. Miami Dolphins — EDGE Kwity Paye, Michigan
Running back Najee Harris has been a popular pick at this spot in my previous mock drafts, but securing an edge-rusher with the speed-to-power traits head coach Brian Flores wants is too juicy to pass up.
19. Washington Football Team — WR Kadarius Toney, Florida
Mac Jones feels like a possibility here, but Ron Rivera isn’t likely to tie his future to a quarterback with less-than-average athleticism and a so-so arm. Expect Washington to be very involved in Sam Darnold talks and to add weapons—like Florida burner Kadarius Toney—to make sure whomever is under center has weapons galore.
20. Chicago Bears — QB Mac Jones, Alabama
The Bears miss out on Carson Wentz and will no doubt be involved in the trade market for other quarterbacks; but it’s starting to feel like Mac Jones could be an option here. He’s an accurate, rhythm passer who can hit the throws Matt Nagy needs. And while he’s not quite as athletic as they’d like, he can move well enough in the pocket to execute this offense.
21. Indianapolis Colts — CB Jaycee Horn, South Carolina
With the quarterback position solved and no left tackle of value on the board, the Colts pivot to the biggest need left on the board. That’s cornerback and South Carolina’s 6’1”, 205-pound ballhawk Jaycee Horn would be a fantastic complement to Rock Ya-Sin on the other side of the defense.
22. Tennessee Titans — EDGE Jaelan Phillips, Miami
Whomever the best edge-rusher is on the board, mock them to the Titans at pick No. 22 overall. Fixing the pass-rush is a giant priority for head coach Mike Vrabel this off-season. Keep a sneaky eye on right tackle here too with Isaiah Wilson in hot water with the team.
23. New York Jets — CB Kelvin Joseph, Kentucky
A breakout player after a transfer from LSU, Joseph was one of the most exciting cornerbacks in the SEC this year. He’s long, fast and had four interceptions in 2020 to put himself on the map. The Jets have a giant hole at cornerback that needs immediate attention.
24. Pittsburgh Steelers — IOL Landon Dickerson, Alabama
With Maurkice Pouncey retired, the Steelers have to address the offensive line this off-season and they’re unlikely able to afford to do that in free agency. Here they take the best lineman available. Even with an ACL tear suffered in the SEC title game, Dickerson has huge value at No. 24 overall.
25. Jacksonville Jaguars — S Trevon Moehrig, TCU
One of my draft crushes this year, Moehrig is a do-it-all, versatile safety with excellent burst and range in coverage. He’ll matchup in the slot, split out at cornerback and is a dangerous ballhawk at safety. Think of him as a bigger Antoine Winfield, Jr.
26. Cleveland Browns — LB Jamin Davis, Kentucky
Speed at the linebacker position is sorely lacking in Cleveland. Davis will remind you of Darius Leonard in his college days as a three-down wrecking ball all over the field and impacting the game in all three phases.
27. Baltimore Ravens — EDGE Azeez Ojulari, Georgia
The Ravens have a knack for holding tight and letting the board fall to them. They do that here with the selection of Ojulari who does fill a need for an edge-rusher; especially if Yannick Ngakoue isn’t back.
28. New Orleans Saints — CB Greg Newsome II, Northwestern
The Saints would have loved a quarterback here, but a reach for Kyle Trask doesn’t seem likely. Instead, look for the front office to bolster the defense as the offense becomes very run-heavy in 2021. Newsome has the length and man coverage chops to fit in from Day 1.
29. Green Bay Packers — LB Jabril Cox, LSU
Speed, length and coverage ability at linebacker are crucial—we saw that in the Super Bowl. This team lacks that completely. Jabril Cox, while not a typical Green Bay first-rounder, checks three boxes from Week 1 and becomes the Devin White type linebacker every team now needs.
30. Buffalo Bills — RB Najee Harris, Alabama
Speed on defense has to be a priority in this off-season, but the run game fell apart in Buffalo last year and we can fix that with one pick while grabbing defenders in Rounds 2 and 3. Harris is the best back in the class with a powerful frame built for Buffalo and the soft hands to become Josh Allen’s best friend when pressured.
31. Kansas City Chiefs – OT Jalen Mayfield, Michigan
“Fix the offensive line no matter what,” should be written on a post-it note in Brett Veach’s office. Patrick Mahomes II can’t be running for his life like he was in the Super Bowl ever again. Eric Fisher is lost for the year. Mitchell Schwartz didn’t play half the season with a back injury. Jalen Mayfield is a Day 1 starter at right tackle or can play guard if Schwartz does return.
32. Tampa Bay Buccaneers — EDGE/LB Zaven Collins, Tulsa
Very quietly, Lavonte David is set to hit free agency. So too is Shaq Barrett. Losing either one would affect this defense greatly, especially since there is already a need opposite Barrett on the edge. Tulsa’s Zaven Collins is a true three-down specialist who accumulated 11.5 TFL, four sacks, four interceptions and had two pick-6’s last year. Plug him in and let him play.