Round 1, Picks 17-32
17) Baltimore Ravens: Terrace Marshall Jr., WR, LSU
Despite stringing together consecutive performances with a touchdown, Marquise “Hollywood” Brown has been a disappointment in Baltimore. The Ravens are so desperate for wide-receiver help that they have Dez Bryant in the fold. While the Ravens historically haven’t had much success drafting wide receivers, they can’t give up yet. Terrace Marshall Jr. is in the mold of what the Ravens need to take their offense to the next level.
18) Las Vegas Raiders: Joseph Ossai, EDGE/OLB, Texas
Mike Mayock has done a terrific job building the Raiders roster. That said, the team needs to sprinkle in playmakers on the defensive side of the ball. The draft community isn’t talking about Joseph Ossai enough, as the talented pass-rusher from Texas checks all the boxes.
19) New York Giants: Jaycee Horn, CB, South Carolina
The Deandre Baker fiasco left a major vacancy at the cornerback position opposite of free-agent steal James Bradberry. Jaycee Horn has the makings of a shutdown corner and should instantly improve the Giants pass defense.
20) Minnesota Vikings: Samuel Cosmi, OT, Texas
It’s time for the Vikings to upgrade from Riley Reiff. While Reiff hasn’t been a complete disaster, the battle-tested Samuel Cosmi should be able to provide an immediate upgrade.
21) Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Christian Darrisaw, OT, Virginia Tech
Father Time will eventually catch up with Tom Brady, which establishes the fact that the Buccaneers window is in the present. One way to make sure Brady is around is by keeping him upright. While Donovan Smith is a serviceable left tackle, Brady is too valuable and warrants better protection. This is one of those scenarios in which an organization cannot let a good player stop them from taking a potentially great player.
22) Miami Dolphins: Zaven Collins, LB, Tulsa
Zaven Collins in a Brian Flores defense is a scary thought. The Miami Dolphins defense has been one of the most pleasant surprises this season. With starting middle linebacker Elandon Roberts being a free agent after the season, one area they could enhance is the linebacker position. Collins possesses tremendous size, speed, and versatility, and would flourish in Miami’s aggressive defense.
23) Indianapolis Colts: Rondale Moore, WR, Purdue
In a perfect world, the Colts would draft their quarterback of the future with this pick. However, drafting Florida’s Kyle Trask or Alabama’s Mac Jones this high would be quite the reach. Instead, the Colts add an explosive pass-catcher to their offense. As of late, Rondale Moore has been battling some injuries. When he is healthy, he is a dynamic weapon.
24) Tennessee Titans: Derion Kendrick, CB, Clemson
An outstanding junior season has sent Derion Kendrick’s draft stock soaring. The Titans defense hasn’t lived up to expectations this season, especially in the secondary. Kendrick has the talent to blossom into a true shutdown corner for Tennessee.
25) New York Jets: Travis Etienne, RB, Clemson
After taking his teammate Trevor Lawrence with the first overall pick, the Jets snag the ACC’s all-time leading rusher in Travis Etienne. When you watch Travis Etienne on tape, you cannot help but be reminded of Saints superstar running back Alvin Kamara. The J-E-T-S have added a pair of elite playmakers, and much better days are ahead.
26) Jacksonville Jaguars: Rashawn Slater, OT, Northwestern
Surprisingly, NFL Network‘s Daniel Jeremiah has Rashawn Slater as the top-rated offensive tackle in the 2021 NFL Draft. Yes, you read that right, even over Oregon’s Penei Sewell. While I might not share the same sentiments, Slater is an instant plug-and-play who has the ability to line up in all five positions on the offensive line.
27) Cleveland Browns: Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah, LB, Notre Dame
The Browns are having one of their best seasons in a long time and seem to be going full-speed ahead in securing a postseason bid. One clear weakness is the linebacker position, making the versatile Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah a perfect selection. Owusu-Koramoah, the former safety, has insane range and could be Cleveland’s answer to a division rival and last year’s MVP Lamar Jackson.
28) Buffalo Bills: Shaun Wade, CB, Ohio State
Buffalo is on a trajectory to be a legitimate Super Bowl contender. They don’t have many needs, but if there is one, it is cornerback. As a result, the Bills land one in this 2021 7-round NFL mock draft.
Shaun Wade is an elite slot corner who is also capable of playing the boundary. Thus, his versatility will fit like a glove in an aggressive Buffalo defense.
29) Green Bay Packers: Rashod Bateman, WR, Minnesota
Rather than provide Aaron Rodgers with weapons in the 2020 NFL Draft, the Packers drafted what many deemed to be his potential replacement. This motivated Rodgers, as he is having one of his best seasons and is a bonafide MVP candidate. This time they get it right and get Rodgers a crafty route-runner who is reminiscent of Keenan Allen.
30) Kansas City Chiefs: Trey Smith, OL, Tennessee
When you have the league’s best player as your quarterback, a smart organization will invest heavily in protecting him. Trey Smith is a mauler who oozes Pro Bowl potential. Make no mistake: the Chiefs interior offensive line needs a makeover.
31) New Orleans Saints: Kyle Trask, QB, Florida
The end is near for Drew Brees, and Taysom Hill is auditioning for the part of franchise quarterback when Brees calls it a career. Since I am not sold on Hill being the heir-apparent to Brees, Kyle Trask, the Heisman hopeful from the University of Florida, might be what the doctor ordered.
Trask’s 2020 season has been spectacular, as he has thrown 38 touchdown passes and a mere three interceptions while leading the Gators to 8-1 on the season.
32) Pittsburgh Steelers: Liam Eichenberg, OT, Notre Dame
Liam Eichenberg and the Pittsburgh Steelers are a match made in heaven. With Alejandro Villanueva slated to be an unrestricted free agent at season’s end, finding a future left tackle is paramount for the Steelers.