Dillon Radunz blocking Elerson G. Smith in the 2021 Senior Bowwl

2021 NFL Draft Recap: AFC South

The AFC South’s 2021 NFL Draft featured a new quarterback in Houston, a new cover corner in Tennessee and a pass rusher for the Colts. Kwity Paye and Caleb Farley will be expected to provide immediate dividends for the Texans and Titans. In Jacksonville, new head coach Urban Meyer brought two former teammates back together in hopes of reinvigorating the fan base.

Houston Texans      
SelectionTeamPlayer selectionPosition-SchoolDN Big Board Rank/GradeNotes
3rd Round, 67th overallHouston TexansDavis Mills6’4 225/ QB-Houston166/3rd RoundThe trend of injuries dates back to his high school days, where he was once ranked ahead of Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa in 247Sports’ 2017 rankings. So what does he bring to the table? Mills is an inexperienced quarterback with a smooth delivery, good mobility and an even-keeled nature. That calm in the face of the storm helped him deliver after falling behind in games as a junior.
3rd Round, 89th overallHouston Texans (from Cleveland Browns)Nico Collins6’4 215/WR-Michigan157/3rd RoundAbove all else, it is his tremendous high-wire acts that grabbed the attention of scouts. In order to maximize those flurries of splashes, Collins has to play with more attention to detail.
5th Round, 147th overallHouston TexansBrevin JordanBrevin Jordan6’3 247/TE-H-back-Miami (Fla.)66/2nd RoundHe has operated as a fullback, flexed-out slot receiver, outside receiver, down tight end and even off the ball tight end. Injuries may have caused his draft slide.
5th Round, 170th overallHouston Texans (via Jacksonville Jaguars from Cleveland Browns)Garret Wallow6’2 220/LB-TCU120/3rd RoundThere is little wasted motion and he fires his frame downhill in a burst that is reminiscent of a gun fighter in an old Western movie. His quick-twitch reactions also show up in the passing game to get into position versus quick route concepts
6th Round, 195th overallHouston Texans (from Dallas Cowboys through New England Patriots)Roy Lopez6’2 304/DT-Arizona, New Mexico State462/6th RoundLopez, a former state heavyweight wrestling champ, was a factor creasing gaps throughout two different stops. He finished with 23.5 career tackles for loss. 36 bench press reps at 225 pounds on his Pro Day.
Indianapolis Colts
SelectionTeamPlayer selectionPosition-SchoolDN Big Board Rank/GradeNotes
1st Round, 21st overallIndianapolis ColtsKwity Paye6’3 270 DE-Michigan9/1st RoundPaye was one of the draft’s best run defenders and he should get better as a pass rusher. With all of that said, however, the Colts need him to be a front line player from Day 1 on a roster that no longer features Justin Houston.
2nd Round, 54th overallIndianapolis ColtsDayo Odeyingbo6’5 285/DE-Vanderbilt52/2nd RoundA recent Achilles injury may hold back his draft stock, but the Colts went ahead and took a chance on Odeyingbo, who could end up as one of the best players in this year’s draft class. Their defense may allow them to sit him for a redshirt year while he recovers. His profile is similar to Colts DL DeForest Buckner.
4th Round, 127th overallIndianapolis ColtsKylen Granson6’2 245/H-back/SMU307/4th RoundThose run after the catch skills were apparent at SMU whenever he got the ball in his hands. He actually may have been faster with the ball in his hands than when running routes. A viable NFL comparison could be drawn to NFL free agent H-back/fullback Trey Burton (Eagles, Bears, Colts).
5th Round, 165th overallIndianapolis ColtsShawn Davis5’10 199/S-Florida318/4th RoundDavis is a well-built, muscular safety who brings a load down-to-down as a hitter. He can tend to play a step too fast and not break down consistently in space. We think his play speed is adequate and it allows him to overcome any lower body stiffness.
6th Round, 218th overallIndianapolis Colts (from New Orleans Saints via compensatory selection)Sam Ehlinger6'1 222 QB-Texas304/4th RoundOver the course of his career, he has improved his accuracy. Ehlinger’s adequate arm strength is offset by inconsistent footwork. Speeding up the efficiency of his drops could help timing on possession route concepts. To earmark Ehlinger’s effectiveness as a goal line runner, look no further than his production against Oklahoma in his career. In those contests alone, he rushed for nine touchdowns.
7th Round, 229th overallIndianapolis Colts (from New Orleans Saints via Jacksonville Jaguars)Michael Strachan6’5 226/WR-Charleston (West Virginia)237/4th RoundThe Division II All-American tends to get choppy in-and-out of his routes while counting some of his steps. Those are the technical flaws, but he gives an NFL wide receivers coach plenty to work with this summer. One possibility that could be intriguing is moving Strachan to an H-back position.
Jacksonville Jaguars
SelectionTeamPlayer selectionPosition-SchoolDN Big Board Rank/GradeNotes
1st Round, 1st overallJacksonville JaguarsTrevor LawrenceQB-Clemson5/1st RoundLawrence's underrated athleticism works for an offense that already features a 1,000-yard rusher and two 1,000-yard receivers.
1st Round, 25th overallJacksonville JaguarsTravis Etienne5’10 215/RB-Clemson22/1st RoundEtienne re-unites with Trevor Lawrence in what could prove to be a game-changing backfield combination. He will team with James Robinson for a powerful one-two punch.
2nd Round, 33rd overallJacksonville JaguarsTyson Campbell6’2 194/CB-Georgia126/3rd RoundA big corner with good foot speed and at least satisfactory quickness. His balance is a characteristic that needs to improve.
2nd Round, 45th overallJacksonville JaguarsWalker Little6’7 313/OT-Stanford167/3rd RoundLittle has not played for a two-year period. When he was on the field, his smooth nature stood out. Rarely did he get overwhelmed with the pace of the defensive end. Can he stay healthy?
3rd Round, 65th overallJacksonville JaguarsAndre Cisco6'0 203/FS-Syracuse54/2nd RoundThe fact that he can make a number of tough tackles hides some of the flaws on the makable misses. Nevertheless, his middle of the field instincts and overall activity are similar to former Wake Forest safety Jessie Bates (Cincinnati Bengals). Due to the ACL knee injury he suffered in October, his final draft position does not reflect his overall value.
4th Round, 106th overallJacksonville JaguarsJay Tufele6’2 305/DT-USC75/2nd RoundTufele is a strong player. We have even noted repetitions where he overpowered guards to make tackles when he didn’t even get lined up prior to the snap (3rd QTR/11:07, Colorado ‘19). Versus double teams, he works to defeat one blocker to prevent the chip from the other blocker.
4th Round, 121st overallJacksonville JaguarsJordan SmithDE-OLB/UAB, Florida 185/3rd RoundFluidity at his size. Rushes from the two-point ROLB/LOLB spots and has lined up at both defensive end spots. Plays the Sam in a number of their packages. He was one of the C-USA’s best players for a two-year period and still found time to run down on kickoffs after off the field issues at Florida.
5th Round, 145th overallJacksonville JaguarsLuke Farrell6’6 250 (E)-TE-Ohio State377/5th RoundFarrell is a player who accepted his role in school and did it with a good amount of attitude as a blocker. He aligned at a number of spots, moved in motion and was asked to block both in-line and in space.
6th Round, 209th overallJacksonville Jaguars (from Los Angeles Rams)Jalen Camp6’2 226/WR-Georgia Tech199/4th RoundMuscular. 33 3/4” arms. Reportedly bench presses 400 pounds and squats nearly 550 pounds. Stride length can get on top of CBs in the move area. His one-hand grab vs. Alcorn State in 2018 showed his catch radius.
Tennessee Titans
SelectionTeamPlayer selectionPositionSchoolNotes
1st Round, 22nd overallTennessee TitansCaleb Farley6’2 207 CB-Virginia Tech17/1st RoundOne of the draft’s most talented corners has ball skills, instincts and health concerns. His skills fit Tennessee’s defensive
2nd Round, 53rd overallTennessee TitansDillon Radunz6’6 300/OT-North Dakota State50/2nd RoundHe has worked on keeping a bent posture over the last year, and this despite appearing in just one game in 2020. There were never any question marks regarding the All-American’s pace, foot speed, or quickness.
3rd Round, 92nd overallTennessee Titans (from Green Bay Packers)Monty Rice6’0 235/LB-Georgia93/3rd RoundThere were still the flash outstanding athletic plays from Rice in 2020 (see Tennessee), but a nagging foot injury hampered his effectiveness for stretches. The overall range and speed in his play are both in place. Rice plays a little bit narrow in his stance and tends to get too thick versus offensive linemen.
3rd Round, 100th overall Tennessee TitansElijah Molden5'9 1/2" 192/Nickel-Washington74-2nd RoundNumbers may not tell the entire story for Molden, who seems to be a player capable of filling a myriad of roles for an NFL defense. Despite being primarily a nickel back during school (even on first/second down), there are possibilities for him working off the hash.
Molden has very good quickness, change of direction and elite eye speed.
4th Round, 109th overallTennessee Titans (from Houston Texans via Carolina)Dez Fitzpatrick6'2 204/WR-Louisville244/4th RoundFitzpatrick helped himself with a second-team All-ACC performance as a senior. His career was full of big moments sprinkled in spots. In fact, he was one of Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson’s favorite targets all the way back in 2017.
4th Round, 135th overallTennessee Titans (from Green Bay Packers)Rashad Weaver6’4 265/DE-Pittsburgh122/3rd RoundIt is impressive that he was able to come back from a knee injury with so much success in one year. We expect him to be a step quicker by the fall. The consensus All-American has somewhat of an unorthodox style in that his initial hand usage sets up his counter moves.
6th Round, 205th overallTennessee TitansRacey McMath6’2 224/WR-H-back-LSU329/5th RoundFormer TE moved to WR and never really was able to fully cut loose with his 4.4 speed. He was seen running down on kickoffs at inside positions, played gunner in school on the punt team and was used as a hold-up blocker on punt return.
6th Round, 215th overallTennessee Titans (from Kansas City Chiefs)Brady Breeze5’11 204/S-Oregon336/5th RoundWhen discussing Oregon’s talented secondary, Breeze is often the player forgotten about. It is hard to believe considering he was the team’s Defensive MVP in the 2020 Rose Bowl. The first thing teams will like about Breeze is the energy he plays with snap-to-snap. Breeze overcomes any rigidness with his play speed.

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