NFL Mock Draft 2021: Jaguars launch historic run on quarterbacks off the bat

on Apr9
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The Jacksonville Jaguars are on the clock and with almost no expectations the team can go with the no-brainer pick and start from there.

The Jaguars have the No. 1 pick and a new coach in Urban Meyer. After another disappointing and a few years of spiraling downward, the team is essentially starting from scratch. Jacksonville has two first-round picks and the mock draft below will reveal the obvious selections.

For the other teams, things aren’t exactly as obvious.

Zach Wilson to the New York Jets? Mac Jones a top-five pick? Where will the first wide receiver go? These questions and more are answered in the first mock draft below.

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1. JAGUARS: TREVOR LAWRENCE, QB (CLEMSON)

Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence (16) makes a pass during an NCAA college football game against Syracuse in Clemson, S.C., on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. (Ken Ruinard/Pool Photo via AP)

Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence (16) makes a pass during an NCAA college football game against Syracuse in Clemson, S.C., on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. (Ken Ruinard/Pool Photo via AP)

The Jaguars are going with the no-brainer pick first – Trevor Lawrence out of Clemson. Lawrence drew the attention of the NFL world during his national championship run a few years ago with the Tigers. He led Clemson to two consecutive titles. He had 3,153 passing yards, 24 passing touchdowns and eight rushing touchdowns.

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2. JETS: ZACH WILSON, QB (BYU)

BYU quarterback Zach Wilson (1) looks downfield in the first half during an NCAA college football game against Texas State Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020, in Provo, Utah. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)

BYU quarterback Zach Wilson (1) looks downfield in the first half during an NCAA college football game against Texas State Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020, in Provo, Utah. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)

The Jets are moving on from the Sam Darnold era and will be rebuilding their system around former BYU quarterback Zach Wilson with the No. 2 overall pick. General manager Joe Douglas, new head coach Robert Saleh and offensive coordinator Mike LaFleur were impressed with Wilson on his Pro Day Back in March and believe he will mesh well with their offensive style.

3. 49ERS: JUSTIN FIELDS, QB (OHIO STATE)

Ohio State quarterback Justin Fields throws against Michigan in the first half of an NCAA college football game in Ann Arbor, Mich., Saturday, Nov. 30, 2019. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya)

Ohio State quarterback Justin Fields throws against Michigan in the first half of an NCAA college football game in Ann Arbor, Mich., Saturday, Nov. 30, 2019. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya)

The 49ers traded their future to the Miami Dolphins to get their franchise quarterback. Fields will fit right into Kyle Shanahan’s offense and will be put into a position to succeed right away. With wide receivers Deebo Samuel and Brandon Aiyuk and All-Pro tight end George Kittle at his disposal, Fields will flourish.

4. FALCONS: TREY LANCE, QB (NORTH DAKOTA STATE)

North Dakota State quarterback Trey Lance runs for a touchdown against Central Arkansas in the third quarter of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Oct. 3, 2020, in Fargo, N.D. North Dakota State won 39-28. (AP Photo/Bruce Kluckhohn)

North Dakota State quarterback Trey Lance runs for a touchdown against Central Arkansas in the third quarter of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Oct. 3, 2020, in Fargo, N.D. North Dakota State won 39-28. (AP Photo/Bruce Kluckhohn)

The Falcons have a lot of needs at No. 4. And should the team keep the fourth pick of the draft, the team could go quarterback and Trey Lance would complete a historic run on QBs in the first four picks of the draft. Lance played one game in 2020 because of the coronavirus pandemic. In 2019, he had 28 touchdown passes for North Dakota State and 2,786 passing yards. He would be the successor to Matt Ryan.

5. BENGALS: JA’MARR CHASE, WR (LSU)

LSU wide receiver Ja'Marr Chase (1) celebrates his touchdown reception in the second half of an NCAA college football game against Florida in Baton Rouge, La., Saturday, Oct. 12, 2019. LSU won 42-28. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

LSU wide receiver Ja’Marr Chase (1) celebrates his touchdown reception in the second half of an NCAA college football game against Florida in Baton Rouge, La., Saturday, Oct. 12, 2019. LSU won 42-28. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

The Bengals are reuniting former LSU teammates and 2020 national champions Joe Burrow and Ja’Marr Chase with the No. 5 overall pick. Despite having Tyler Boyd and Tee Higgins, Cincinnati lacks a consistent option down the field for Burrow — a hole easily filled by Chase. 

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6. DOLPHINS: DEVONTA SMITH, WR (ALABAMA)

Alabama wide receiver DeVonta Smith (6) warms up before the first half of the Southeastern Conference championship NCAA college football game against Florida, Saturday, Dec. 19, 2020, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)

Alabama wide receiver DeVonta Smith (6) warms up before the first half of the Southeastern Conference championship NCAA college football game against Florida, Saturday, Dec. 19, 2020, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)

The 2020 Heisman Trophy winner will reunite with former Crimson Tide quarterback Tua Tagovailoa in Miami. Smith, a first-team All-American, led all of college football with 117 receptions, 1,856 receiving yards and 23 receiving touchdowns. Even though his 6-foot, 170-pound frame isn’t an ideal size for an NFL receiver, his route-running, sure hands and ability to make plays make Smith an easy selection for the Dolphins.

7. LIONS: PENEI SEWELL, OT (OREGON)

Sewell is the best offensive lineman in the draft. The former Oregon standout will be tasked with protecting new Lions quarterback Jared Goff. He was an All-American and the Outland Trophy winner in 2019.

8. PANTHERS: RASHAWN SLATER, OT (NORTHWESTERN)

The Panthers are looking to give Sam Darnold a fresh start next season and that starts with protection. They solve that problem by selecting offensive tackle Rashawn Slater out of Northwestern with the No. 8 overall pick. At 6-foot-4, 304 pounds, Slater will likely transition in as a starter. 

9. BRONCOS: MICAH PARSONS, LB (PENN STATE)

FILE - In this Nov. 30, 2019, file photo, Penn State linebacker Micah Parsons (11) tackles Rutgers tight end Johnathan Lewis (11) in the first quarter of an NCAA college football game, in State College, Pa. (AP Photo/Barry Reeger, File)

FILE – In this Nov. 30, 2019, file photo, Penn State linebacker Micah Parsons (11) tackles Rutgers tight end Johnathan Lewis (11) in the first quarter of an NCAA college football game, in State College, Pa. (AP Photo/Barry Reeger, File)

One of the best defensive players in this draft heads to Denver, despite opting out of the 2020 college football season due to concerns about COVID-19. As a sophomore at Penn State, Parsons finished with a team-high 109 tackles to go along with five sacks, five pass breakups and four forced fumbles. He was a first-team All-American in 13 games played in 2019.

10. COWBOYS: PATRICK SURTAIN II, CB (ALABAMA)

The Cowboys ranked toward the bottom in defense in 2020. While an offensive weapon is still on the board, Patrick Surtain II would add depth to the secondary. For Dallas to have maximum success, the team needs to address the defensive side of the football.

11. GIANTS: JAYLEN WADDLE, WR (ALABAMA)

Alabama wide receiver Jaylen Waddle (17) pulls in a pass over Mississippi defensive back A.J. Finley (21) during the second half of an NCAA college football game in Oxford, Miss., Saturday, Oct. 10, 2020. Alabama won 63-48. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis)

Alabama wide receiver Jaylen Waddle (17) pulls in a pass over Mississippi defensive back A.J. Finley (21) during the second half of an NCAA college football game in Oxford, Miss., Saturday, Oct. 10, 2020. Alabama won 63-48. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis)

The Giants are looking to give Daniel Jones more weapons, and with that in mind New York drafts former Bama wideout Jaylen Waddle with the No. 9 overall pick. With DeVonta Smith to the Miami Dolphins, Waddle presents a solid option for Joe Judge’s offense. In 2020, he totaled 28 receptions for 591 yards and four touchdowns in six games. 

12. EAGLES: JEREMIAH OWUSU-KORAMOAH, LB (NOTRE DAME)

Owusu-Koramoah, who earned the Butkus Award as the country’s top linebacker, heads to Philadelphia to shore up the Eagles defense. He was also a first-team All-American as well as the ACC Defensive Player of the Year. In 12 starts in 2020, Owusu-Koramoah had 62 total tackles, 11 tackles for a loss, three forced fumbles, 1.5 sacks, one interception and three passes defended.

13. CHARGERS: KYLE PITTS, TE (FLORIDA)

Florida tight end Kyle Pitts (84) tries to get past Georgia defensive back Lewis Cine (16) after a reception during the first half of an NCAA college football game in Jacksonville, Fla., in this Saturday, Nov. 7, 2020, file photo. (AP Photo/John Raoux, File)

Florida tight end Kyle Pitts (84) tries to get past Georgia defensive back Lewis Cine (16) after a reception during the first half of an NCAA college football game in Jacksonville, Fla., in this Saturday, Nov. 7, 2020, file photo. (AP Photo/John Raoux, File)

Kyle Pitts has been touted as an athletic freak. But in this mock, he will have to wait around a bit to get picked. Pitts would represent the perfect replacement for Hunter Henry and give Los Angeles another valuable weapon.

14. VIKINGS: CHRISTIAN DARRISAW, OL (VIRGINIA TECH)

The Vikings have several needs heading into the draft but the most glaring came last month with the release of veteran offensive tackle Riley Reiff. If Virginia Tech standout Christian Darrisaw is still on the board, there’s no doubt Minnesota will lock him in with the No. 14 overall pick.  

15. PATRIOTS: MAC JONES, QB (ALABAMA)

Alabama quarterback Mac Jones (10) throws during the first half of an NCAA college football game against LSU in Baton Rouge, La., Saturday, Dec. 5, 2020. (AP Photo/Matthew Hinton)

Alabama quarterback Mac Jones (10) throws during the first half of an NCAA college football game against LSU in Baton Rouge, La., Saturday, Dec. 5, 2020. (AP Photo/Matthew Hinton)

Jones, a national champion at Alabama, is the next quarterback to star for the Patriots. During his stellar 2020 season leading the Crimson Tide, Jones set an FBS record with a 77.4 completion percentage. He also led the nation with a school-record 4,500 passing yards, and he threw for 41 touchdowns. Jones was recognized as a first-team All-American and he won the Davey O’Brien Award as the country’s top quarterback.

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16. CARDINALS: CALEB FARLEY, CB (VIRGINIA TECH)

The Cardinals have a need to fill at cornerback after losing Patrick Peterson. Caleb Farley is 1-B to Patrick Surtain II’s 1-A. Farley had a microdiscectomy procedure causing his stock to slip a little bit. But Arizona makes sense here.

17. RAIDERS: ALIJAH VERA-TUCKER, OL (USC)

The Raiders will need a versatile player to fill the void of Trent Brown. Former USC offensive lineman Alijah Vera-Tucker played both guard and left tackle in college but should have no trouble moving to the right side. Las Vegas will take Vera-Tucker with the No. 17 overall pick.

18. DOLPHINS: KWITY PAYE, DE (MICHIGAN)

After taking Alabama’s DeVonta Smith to help out with their offense, the Dolphins improve on the defensive side of the football with their selection of Paye. As a junior in 2019, Paye was a member of the All-Big Ten second-team after he piled up 50 tackles with 6.5 sacks in 12 games. This past season, Paye was recognized as a team captain, and he was an honorable mention after playing in just four games. He had 16 tackles, four tackles for a loss and two sacks.

19. WASHINGTON: TEVEN JENKINS, OL (OKLAHOMA STATE)

Washington has a solid defense and will likely have to address its quarterback situation at some point over the course of the draft. But with the five top quarterbacks off the board, Washington will go offensive line. Teven Jenkins would be the guy for Washington at No. 19. He was First Team All-Big 12 in 2020.

20. BEARS: JAYCEE HORN, CB (SOUTH CAROLINA)

The Bears aren’t going with a quarterback this round. Instead, they’ll fill their cornerback needs. With Caleb Farley going to the Cardinals, Chicago will pick Jaycee Horn out of South Carolina with the No. 20 overall pick. At 6-foot-5, 205 pounds, Horn is a physical player. He recorded a 4.39, 40-yard dash and a 41-1/2-inch vertical leap. 

21. COLTS: GREGORY ROUSSEAU, DL (MIAMI)

Miami Hurricanes defensive lineman Gregory Rousseau (15) celebrates wearing the turnover chain during the first quarter of a football game against the Central Michigan Chippewas at Hard Rock Stadium.

Miami Hurricanes defensive lineman Gregory Rousseau (15) celebrates wearing the turnover chain during the first quarter of a football game against the Central Michigan Chippewas at Hard Rock Stadium.

Rousseau decided to opt out of the 2020 season due to COVID-19, but that doesn’t stop the Colts from taking him with their first-round pick. As a sophomore in 2019, Rousseau had 15.5 sacks — which was second in the nation behind Ohio State’s Chase Young. He also had 54 total tackles and two forced fumbles. Rousseau, who started in seven of 13 games, was a first-team All-ACC selection and ACC Defensive Rookie of the Year. The jury is still out on Rousseau, but his 6-foot-7, 266-pound frame should be a handful for opposing offensive linemen.

22. TITANS: TERRACE MARSHALL, WR (LSU)

The Titans need another weapon to pair with A.J. Brown. Corey Davis went to the Jets in the offseason so taking a top-flight receiver would make sense. Terrace Marshall going No. 22 would be ideal. Marshall played in seven games for LSU in 2020. He had 48 catches for 731 yards and 10 touchdowns.

23. JETS: CREED HUMPHREY, OL (OKLAHOMA)

The Jets have a good opportunity to rebuild with 22 picks in the next two drafts, but out of the 10 selections this year, they will take former Oklahoma offensive lineman Creed Humphrey with the No. 23 overall pick. Outside quarterback, the Jets offensive line needs the most work. Humphrey was an 11-game starter, named a third-team AP All-American, Big 12 Offensive Lineman of the Year and first-team all-conference center before declaring for the draft. 

24. STEELERS: NAJEE HARRIS, RB (ALABAMA)

Alabama running back Najee Harris celebrates after their win against Notre Dame in the Rose Bowl NCAA college football game in Arlington, Texas, Friday, Jan. 1, 2021. (AP Photo/Michael Ainsworth)

Alabama running back Najee Harris celebrates after their win against Notre Dame in the Rose Bowl NCAA college football game in Arlington, Texas, Friday, Jan. 1, 2021. (AP Photo/Michael Ainsworth)

The first running back off the board is Alabama’s Najee Harris, and he will be a perfect fit for the Steelers. Honored with the Doak Walker Award, which is given to the country’s top running back, Harris piled up 1,466 yards on 251 carries with 26 rushing touchdowns. He also hauled in 43 receptions for 425 yards and four scores as a receiving option. Harris set Alabama career records with 57 total scores, 3,843 rushing yards and 46 rushing touchdowns. He should step into Pittsburgh and make an immediate contribution to the team’s offense.

25. JAGUARS: ALEX LEATHERWOOD, OL (ALABAMA)

There’s going to be a big run on offensive linemen in the first round and the Jags taking Alex Leatherwood would be a great pick at No. 25. Jacksonville took Trevor Lawrence first and now gets some protection for him. Leatherwood was the 2020 Outland Trophy winner.

26. BROWNS: JAELAN PHILLIPS, DE (MIAMI)

The Browns are looking to build off the momentum of 2020 and will complete their roster by drafting Miami standout Jaelan Phillips. Phillips will likely come on as a starter and play opposite Myles Garrett. He totaled 12.5 sacks and 23.5 tackles for loss in three seasons. 

27. RAVENS: KADARIUS TONEY, WR (FLORIDA)

Florida wide receiver Kadarius Toney (1) gets past South Carolina defensive back John Dixon (22) for a 57-yard touchdown run during the second half of an NCAA college football game, Saturday, Oct. 3, 2020, in Gainesville, Fla. (AP Photo/John Raoux, Pool)

Florida wide receiver Kadarius Toney (1) gets past South Carolina defensive back John Dixon (22) for a 57-yard touchdown run during the second half of an NCAA college football game, Saturday, Oct. 3, 2020, in Gainesville, Fla. (AP Photo/John Raoux, Pool)

The Ravens roll with the best wide receiver left on the board to help quarterback Lamar Jackson. The 5-foot-11, 189-pound Toney offers playmaking ability that is in a world of its own. In 2020, he led Florida with 70 receptions for 984 yards and he scored 10 touchdowns, which was tied for seventh-most in all of college football. Toney also had 19 carries for 161 yards and one score on the ground, and as a returner, he averaged 22.1 yards on kickoffs and 12.6 yards on punts. He scored one touchdown as a punt returner in 11 starts.

28. SAINTS: TREVON MOEHRIG, S (TCU)

Let’s get some defense for the Saints. New Orleans can do a few things at this point. Moehrig is a good safety and if Marshon Lattimore can’t go in the beginning of the 2021 season, Moehrig will have to step up. He had seven interceptions in 33 games for TCU over three years.

29. PACKERS: LIAM EICHENBERG, OL (NOTRE DAME)

The Packers will address their thinning offensive line by drafting the Fighting Irish’s Liam Eichenberg with the No. 29 overall pick. Eichenberg didn’t allow a single sack and gave up just 27 total pressures over his last two seasons at Notre Dame. He joins the Vikings as a likely starter. 

30. BILLS: TRAVIS ETIENNE, RB (CLEMSON)

Clemson running back Travis Etienne (9) runs the ball as Notre Dame defensive lineman Kurt Hinish (41) attempts to tackle during the first quarter of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Nov. 7, 2020, in South Bend, Ind. (Matt Cashore/Pool Photo via AP)

Clemson running back Travis Etienne (9) runs the ball as Notre Dame defensive lineman Kurt Hinish (41) attempts to tackle during the first quarter of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Nov. 7, 2020, in South Bend, Ind. (Matt Cashore/Pool Photo via AP)

Etienne will be another weapon for quarterback Josh Allen, who is coming off his best season as a pro. At Clemson, the star running back made life easier for Trevor Lawrence, and he should do the same for the Buffalo Bills quarterback. Etienne was honored as a first-team All-American after piling up 913 yards on 168 carries with 14 rushing touchdowns. He also had 48 receptions for 588 yards with two scores in the receiving game. Etienne set the ACC record for career rushing yards with 4,952.

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31. CHIEFS: JALEN MAYFIELD, OT (MICHIGAN)

The Chiefs lost a few offensive linemen in the offseason and addressing the need in the first round may help them. Jalen Mayfield is another solid offensive lineman who could fall to the latter part of the first round or the early part of the second round. He was an Honorable Mention All-Big Ten team honoree last season.

32. BUCCANEERS: AZEEZ OJULARI, DE (GEORGIA)

The Bucs have little to improve on after bringing back all 22 starters from the Super Bowl. They’ve yet to pull the trigger on re-signing Antonio Brown but assuming they do, they will draft former Georgia edge rusher Azeez Ojulari with the No. 32 overall pick. He earned second-team All-SEC honors after leading the Bulldogs with 12.5 tackles for loss. He also tied for eighth in the FBS with 8.5 sacks and tied for second with four forced fumbles in 10 starts.



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