The 2021 NFL draft is finally here, and we’re ready to predict all 32 picks for tonight’s first round in Cleveland.
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Here’s how we think it shakes out, including trade predictions, with the Jets and Giants both going offense up top:
1. JAGUARS: Trevor Lawrence, QB, Clemson
The Tigers’ star passer goes first overall as the wire-to-wire chalk.
2. JETS: Zach Wilson, QB, BYU
Asking this rhetorical question again: How is Wilson good enough to be the lock No. 2 pick but not good enough to challenge Lawrence at No.1?
3. NINERS (via Dolphins): Mac Jones, QB, Alabama
I don’t think this is what the Niners should do, but I think it’s what they will do. Jimmy Garoppolo might get traded to the Patriots.
4. FALCONS: Kyle Pitts, TE, Florida
The Falcons could draft a successor to Matt Ryan, 35, but they take the most coveted position player in the draft.
5. BENGALS: Ja’Marr Chase, WR, LSU
Joe Burrow reunites with his top college weapon in the pros.
6. DOLPHINS (via Eagles): Jaylen Waddle, WR, Alabama
Waddle is on record saying he’d take Mac Jones over another former Alabama teammate, Dolphins QB Tua Tagovailoa. Awkward!
7. LIONS: Penei Sewell, OT, Oregon
The Lions want to trade out, but end up staying put and taking a nasty O-lineman who will bite off kneecaps for coach Dan Campbell.
8. TRADE: PATRIOTS (from Carolina): Justin Fields, QB, Ohio State
Hell freezes over when Bill Belichick follows up a rare free-agency spending spree by trading up from No. 15 for a quarterback.
9. BRONCOS: Trey Lance, QB, North Dakota St.
GM George Paton can’t go into the season with Teddy Bridgewater and Drew Lock as his QBs.
10. COWBOYS: Jaycee Horn, CB, South Carolina
It’s between Horn, Patrick Surtain II and an offensive lineman. I see the son of former wide receiver Joe Horn as the first defensive player off the board.
11. GIANTS: DeVonta Smith, WR, Alabama
The Giants consider Micah Parsons and Surtain, but they pick the Heisman Trophy winner to give Daniel Jones the best chance to succeed.
12. EAGLES: Patrick Surtain II, CB, Alabama
The Eagles, like the Giants, see the top WRs and CBs among this year’s best prospects. They take the one that’s left: the polished son of the former Pro Bowler with the same name.
13. CHARGERS: Christian Darrisaw, OT, Virginia Tech
This could be Rashawn Slater, but some teams believe the Northwestern opt-out will be a guard in the pros. Darrisaw is a left tackle who played in 2020 and will protect Justin Herbert in 2021.
14. VIKINGS: Alijah Vera-Tucker, OL, USC
Mike Zimmer really wants to fix his defense, but Vera-Tucker addresses a need on the line and is versatile. He played both tackle and guard for the Trojans.
15. TRADE: PANTHERS (from New England): Caleb Farley, CB, Virginia Tech
The Panthers want a corner and really like Farley, a top talent who should still be available here due to back surgery in March. They get more assets in their trade back from No. 8, as well.
16. CARDINALS: Greg Newsome II, CB Northwestern
Cardinals GM Steve Keim is a total wild card, but Arizona needs corners.
17. RAIDERS: Micah Parsons, LB, Penn State
Parsons’ slide stops in Vegas, where Jon Gruden spins the wheel on one of this draft’s most talented players despite his off-field flags.
18. DOLPHINS: Kwity Paye, DE, Michigan
One of the cleaner evaluations in the draft helps Brian Flores’ defense.
19. WASHINGTON FOOTBALL TEAM: Rashawn Slater, OT, Northwestern
Supposedly Washington likes TCU safety Trevon Moehrig, but I like them fortifying their front.
20. BEARS: Rashod Bateman, WR, Minnesota
The Golden Gophers’ opt-out pairs nicely with No. 1 wideout Allen Robinson and could be groomed to replace him.
21. COLTS: Jamin Davis, LB, Kentucky
Davis playing next to Darius Leonard? Good luck penetrating the second level of that defense.
22. TITANS: Trevon Moehrig, S, TCU
The Titans almost turned over their entire secondary this spring. Moehrig helps the back-end facelift. Tulsa LB Zaven Collins also could be the pick here.
23. JETS: Teven Jenkins, OT, Oklahoma State
Robert Saleh would love to go defense, but accepts that he needs a bookend to LT Mekhi Becton.
24. STEELERS: Joe Tryon, DE, Washington
Mike Tomlin bolsters his pass rush with this 6-5, 259-pound specimen. If the Patriots don’t go quarterback, they could even take Tryon at 15.
25. JAGUARS: Christian Barmore, DT, Alabama
Urban Meyer goes best player available and helps his defense after taking the QB Lawrence at No. 1.
26. BROWNS: Zaven Collins, LB, Tulsa
This 6-4, 259 inside linebacker adds menace to the middle for the Browns. Davis and Barmore would be options here if they were still on the board.
27. RAVENS: Azeez Ojulari, Edge, Georgia
This young pass rusher with upside feels like a great fit for Don Martindale’s defense.
28. SAINTS: Kyle Trask, QB, Florida
Maybe you believe Jameis Winston and Taysom Hill are the Saints’ entire QB depth chart for 2021. I don’t.
29. PACKERS: Elijah Moore, WR, Ole Miss
The Packers finally give Aaron Rodgers a first-round wide receiver.
30. BILLS: Jaelan Phillips, DE, Miami
The Bills’ pass rush needs an upgrade. So they take a risk on Phillips, a top-5 talent who quit football two years ago due to concussions.
31. TRADE: DOLPHINS (from Baltimore): Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah, LB, Notre Dame
Miami trades back into the first round from No. 36 for this defensive chess piece. The Ravens flip their first-round return in the Orlando Brown Jr. Chiefs trade for more assets.
32. BUCS: Landon Dickerson, OL, Alabama
Tom Brady gets more protection up front. The Bucs take a chance on Dickerson, who teams love despite the center/guard’s knee issues.