Pro Sports Weekly: Mock NFL Draft (1st Round)

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Photo by Dave Adamson on Unsplash

Drew R. Abrams, Sports Columnist

Pick No.1/Jacksonville Jaguars-Trevor Lawrence (QB)

This is a no-brainer.  Everyone knows the highly touted Lawrence is going no.1 overall, barring a shocking trade.

Pick No.2/New York Jets-Zach Wilson (QB)

While it’s possible that the Jets swerve us and trade down or take Justin Fields, the Eagles traded down because they couldn’t get Zach Wilson, which all but confirmed that the Jets were taking him at number two.

Pick No.3/San Francisco 49ers-Mac Jones (QB)

Whether or not this is a smart move or not, the 49ers traded three first round picks to get to this spot, which means they clearly have somebody that they want…bad.  While third overall is way too high for Jones, he does fit Kyle Shannahan´s system and checks his boxes for a quarterback.

Pick No.4/Atlanta Falcons-Justin Fields (QB)

Matt Ryan is clearly over the hill.  With no successor lined up, Atlanta will take Fields at four.  He will almost certainly sit behind the former MVP Ryan for a year while Atlanta waits for the former´s contract to run out.

Pick No.5/Cincinnati Bengals-  Ja´amar Chase (WR)

Ja´amar Chase is, by most accounts, a guaranteed stud receiver.  With Joe Burrow losing AJ Green and John Ross, it makes all the sense in the world that they would reunite their star quarterback with his former star receiver from their LSU days.

Pick No.6/Miami Dolphins–  Penei Sewell (OL)

The Dolphins are in a dream position.  They have an almost unheard of number of draft picks and could still trade down if they want to get more.  One of the few weaknesses of the Brian Flores-lead team is the offensive line, and Sewell is, quite frankly, a beast.  I would expect the Oregon product to head to Miami with the sixth overall pick.

Pick No.7/Detroit Lions–  Kyle Pitts (TE/WR)

The Lions have gaping holes all over the depth chart and need talent wherever they can get it.  While Detroit already has a pro-bowl TE in T.J. Hockenson, Pitts can move all over the field with his incredible speed and size.  Hockenson and Pitts could be one of the most dangerous tight end duos in NFL history, and it would be a great situation to put new QB Jared Goff, or his successor, in.

Pick No.8/Carolina Panthers–  Trey Lance (QB)

While the Panthers traded Sam Darnold, I wouldn’t be shocked if they still took a quarterback here.  Darnold has had a shaky career to say the least, and the last time the Panthers took a shot on a fringe QB it didn’t work.  I expect Carolina to go into OTA´s with two young quarterbacks competing for the starting job.

Pick No.9/Denver Broncos-Rashawn Slater (OL)

While the Broncos need to go about replacing Drew Lock, it doesn’t appear as if they´ll be able to in this draft.  Not in the first round at least.  They do need major help on the offensive line, though.  Slater is going much higher than projected here, but it might be the Broncos best option.

Pick No.10/Dallas Cowboys–  Micah Parsons (LB)

The Cowboys need defense, defense, defense, and more defense.  Demarcus Lawrence had a major fall off last year, Sean Lee is all but done, and Leighton Vander-Esch appears to be one of the few remaining quality starters.  Parsons has been falling in mock drafts and big boards for weeks now, but I think the talent and position would just be too much to pass up for Dallas.

Pick No.11/New York Giants–  Devonta Smith (WR)

Even though the Giants probably should be addressing quarterback and offensive line, they appear infatuated with wide receivers and seem to think they can build around Sir. Daniel Dimes (Daniel Jones) and have a solid team to compete in the morbid NFC East.  I think the chance to draft a big name receiver in Smith is just too much for the Giants to pass up and they will pair the Heisman trophy winner with the newly signed Kenny Golladay.

Pick No.12/Philadelphia Eagles–  Jaylen Waddle (WR)

The Eagles are a mess right now.  They have a toxic front office headed by an incompetent GM in Howie Roseman and a first year head coach in Nick Sirianni, who is supposed to be Frank Reich 2.0.  Simply put, the Eagles can´t make the same mistake they did with Carson Wentz and fail to surround him talent.  Give me the speedy Jaylen Waddle at twelve to pair up with Jalen Reagor.

Pick No.13/Los Angeles Chargers–  Patrick Surtain II (CB)

The Chargers need some help in the secondary, and Patrick Surtain II is a prime option.  The Alabama product falls a little here and the Chargers bolster a line-heavy defense.

Pick No.14/Minnesota Vikings–  Christian Barmore (DL)

The Vikings are one of those teams who can’t seem to force themselves out of mediocrity since their odd NFC division run in 2017 with Case Keenum.   Barmore teamed with Danielle Hunter on the defensive line should be able to add a punch to the Minnesota defense.

Pick No.15/New England Patriots–  Jaycee Horn (CB)

If I´m being completely honest, I would expect New England to trade up or trade down and address their quarterback situation.  But with most of the quarterbacks already gone here, I have them taking Jaycee Horn, the talented defensive back who has drawn comparison to LA´s Jalen Ramsey.

Pick No.16/Arizona Cardinals–  Alija Vera-Tucker (OL)

The Cardinals are entering win-now mode.  They signed several big name free agents and were primed for a breakout year last year before they stalled midseason and Kyler Murray had to deal with some nagging injuries.  That being said, I expect them to take Vera-Tucker to protect their snack-size quarterback and keep him in the pocket.

Pick No.17/Las Vegas Raiders–  Kwity Paye (DL)

The Raiders appear stuck in limbo.  Dereck Carr appears to be on his way out, their defense has struggled, and they almost lost to the, at the time, winless Jets last year.  Josh Jacobs is a stud, but he appears to be the only one on his team.  Paye has all the measurables, but the question is can he actually perform at the NFL level.  The Raiders take a shot on him in this mock and hope he can bring something to their defense.

Pick No.18/Miami Dolphins-Gregory Rousseau (DL)

Miami could use a little help on defense, and this pick seems to be tailor made for him.  People forget just how good Rousseau was before he opted out of the 2020-21 season due to Covid concerns.  Hailing from the University of Miami, he would be a great pick for a Miami team that could use a piece on their somewhat lackluster defensive line.

Pick No.19/The Washington Football Team–  Christian Darrisaw (OL)

Washington is in a rather odd position.  One of their few needs is quarterback, but they have little to no chance of seriously addressing it.  Their offensive line, however, could use some new talent, and Christian Darrisaw fits the bill here.

Pick No.20/Chicago Bears–  Kellen Mond (QB)

It wouldn´t be the NFL Draft without the Bears doing something stupid.  For that reason I have them selecting Kellen Mond out of Texas A&M.  Mond has a high ceiling and first round potential according to some scouts, but he isn’t projected to go until the second round at the earliest.  But the Bears have made one bad decision after the other at quarterback, and after the outrage of Andy Dalton being named the starter for the upcoming season, I think Ryan Pace will be desperate to make an impact move and take a shot at the young quarterback.

Pick No.21/Indianapolis Colts–  Rashod Bateman (WR)

The Colts are one of the most promising teams in the league going into the 2021 NFL season, and while they don´t have any gaping holes in their roster, they have a somewhat lackluster wide receiver corps, headed by Michael Pittman and Zach Paschall.  I would expect them to draft receiver Rashod Bateman out of Minnesota in hopes the former Golden Gopher can help the newly-acquired Carson Wentz get back to MVP form.

Pick No.22/Tennesse Titans–  Zaven Collins (EDGE)

After the departure of Jadaveon Clowney, the Titans are in need of a new edge rusher, and Collins fits the build.  The Titans win-now window could soon be closing after the departure of several players, and Tennessee should take this opportunity to bolster their defense.

Pick No.23/New York Jets–  Azeez Ojulari (LB)

The Jets are one of those teams that just need to draft whoever the best player available is, and here I think we will see Azeez Ojulari hold up that disgusting green jersey.

Pick No.24/Pittsburgh Steelers–  Travis Etienne (RB)

I originally had the Steelers taking the offensive lineman Teven Jenkins due to the Steelers crippling o-line issues, but I think Etienne is just too good for the Steelers to pass on him here.  With the departure of James Conner, they are in desperate need for a running back, and no one seriously thinks Big Ben can carry this team anymore.

Pick No.25/Jacksonville Jaguars–  Trevon Moehrig (S)

Much like the Jets, the Jaguars are a hopelessly bad team and need to take anyone who can help them.  They have some young players on defense, and they add another in the TCU graduate Trevon Moehrig.

Pick No.26/Cleveland Browns–  Jeremiah Owosu-Koramoah (LB)

The Browns are one of the most complete teams in the NFL, and they don’t honestly need to fill any spots.  They have almost a dozen possible pro bowlers on their team, but there is no such thing as having too many good linebackers.

Pick No.27/Baltimore Ravens–  Kadarius Toney (WR)

This is now the second straight offseason where the Ravens have failed to surround their franchise quarterback with talented receivers.  Hollywood Brown could be a star one day, but he certainly isn’t right now.  Kadarius Toney has the size and speed to be a serious player in the NFL.  He has been rising in draft boards slowly over several weeks and could be an excellent player to team with Brown in order to play off both of their strengths.

Pick No. 28/New Orleans Saints–  Terrence Marshall (WR)

It remains to be seen how New Orleans will rebound from Drew Brees´ retirement, but it appears that Jameis Winston will replace him, at least for the time being.  The Saints also lost their no.2 two receiver in Emmanuel Sanders, and the LSU man Marshall would be an excellent option to replace him with his similar play style.

Pick No.29/Green Bay Packers–  Greg Newsome (CB)

This is simple.  Replace Kevin King.  Next pick.

Pick No.30/Buffalo Bills–  Najee Harris (RB)

The Bills are a potential superbowl caliber team, but it doesn’t´appear that Devon Singleterry is the answer at running back.  He hasn´t been bad, but he hasn´t been great.  Najee Harris is literally the complete package at running back.  He´s big, fast, and elusive.  I love the idea of him going to the Bills, and I think he could take the Bills to the next level.

Pick No.31/Kansas City Cheifs–  Jayson Oweh (EDGE)

The Cheifs are rather in odd in the sense that they are one of the best teams in the NFl, but they still have some serious holes.  They will be a great team as long as Patrick Mahomes is under center for them, but bolstering the defensive line certainly won´t hurt, especially considering the inability to stop the Bucanners in the Super Bowl.

Pick No.32/Tampa Bay Bucanners–  Levi Onwuzurike (DL)

The Bucs don´t really need anything.  They have an amazing defensive line, great linebacker corps, a decent secondary, and an adequate quarterback throwing to several pro bowl talents.  That being said both of the lines could use an upgrade, so here they take Onwuzurike with the final pick in the first round.

 

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