Tag Archives: 2021 NFL Draft

2018 Recruiting Recap: Quarterbacks

The 2018 recruiting class at quarterback was a star-studded group that has already had two of its quarterbacks, Trevor Lawrence (Jacksonville Jaguars, 2021 NFL Draft, 1st Round, 1st overall) and Justin Fields (Chicago Bears, 2021 NFL Draft, 1st Round, 11th overall), hear their names called in the NFL Draft. Today, we take a look at the trajectory of the rest of the group. For the purposes of being fair in compiling our Top 10 lists by position group, we continue to use aggregate rankings from three of the top recruiting services (Rivals, 247Sports and ESPN). We also used the most prevalent designation for each quarterback (pro-style or dual-threat) when they came out of high school.

Trevor Lawrence (Pro) Clemson: Ranked #1 by 247Sports, Rivals, & ESPN
Consensus No. 1 recruit coming out of high school who exceeded the many expectations that were placed upon him. Lawrence showed ultimate poise as a true freshman going undefeated and winning the national championship with 347 yards passing and three touchdowns. He won various awards during his time at Clemson, finishing his career with a 34-2 record. Lawrence was taken first overall in the 2021 NFL Draft (Jacksonville Jaguars) and he was widely regarded as the best QB prospect since Andrew Luck in 2012 (Indianapolis Colts).

Justin Fields (Dual) Ohio State: Ranked #1 by 247Sports, Rivals, & ESPN
Fields committed to the Bulldogs and played in 12 of 14 games as a freshman. However, with Jake Fromm being set as the starter, he decided to transfer to Columbus. Fields became the third Buckeye QB in the last 50 seasons to win his first 13 starts. He threw for over 3,000 yards in his first season as a full-time starter with a 41-to-3 touchdown-to- interception ratio. He added over 1,000 rushing yards with 19 touchdowns in his career. Consistency was a concern for many when it came to Fields at the next level, and he ended up going 11th overall in the first round to the Chicago Bears. Many seem to have forgotten when he was a supposed 1A to Trevor Lawrence. I haven’t.

JT Daniels (Pro) USC Trojans: Ranked #2 by 247Sports & Rivals, #3 by ESPN
Daniels enrolled at USC in 2018 and started every game he played. He showed some promise, however a knee injury in the 2019 season opener ended his campaign prematurely. Kedon Slovis took over and played exceptionally well, causing Daniels to transfer to Georgia. He finally got his opportunity late in the year, starting the final four games, all wins for the Bulldogs. In those contests, he threw for over 1,000 yards with 10 touchdowns to just two interceptions. Daniels returned to Georgia for the 2021 season and, if he can build on last year’s momentum, may very well set up his pathway into the NFL.

Tanner McKee (Pro) Stanford: Ranked #3 by 247Sports, #4 by Rivals, & #5 by ESPN
McKee spent most of the last two years in Brazil as a missionary. He made his collegiate debut in 2020, but appeared in just one game. The highly-touted 6-foot-6, 228-pounder will look to solidify his collegiate career in 2021 as a first-time starter. To do so, he will have to fend off senior Jack West.

Justin Rogers QB UNLV
Rogers, pictured, completed 14-of-22 passes for 161 yards and one touchdown for UNLV in 2020. Most of those yards came against an impressive San Jose State defense.

Justin Rogers (Dual) TCU: Ranked #2 by 247Sports & Rivals, #4 by ESPN
Rogers entered the Horned Frogs program as the highest rated recruit of the Gary Patterson-era. However, a devastating injury suffered as a senior in high school never really opened an opportunity at TCU. He threw just one pass for Texas Christian and -after seeing no game action in 2019- Rogers transferred to UNLV. He appeared in two games last season and will look to compete for the starting job in 2021. Standing in Rogers’ way is left-handed 6-foot-5 sophomore Doug Brumfield.

Dorian Thompson-Robinson QB UCLA
Thompson-Robinson -a three-year starter- has already accounted for 47 total touchdowns heading into 2021.

Dorian Thompson-Robinson (Dual) UCLA: Ranked #3 by 247Sports, #2 by Rivals & ESPN
Thompson-Robinson has seen consistent action in all three seasons for the Bruins. In 2020, he was named second-team All-Pac-12 after completing 65% of his passes with 12 touchdowns and four interceptions in five contests. DTR also displayed his dual-threat rushing capability by accounting for over 300 yards and three touchdowns on 55 attempts. Facing a brutal schedule in 2021, the strong-armed veteran has a legitimate chance to become the high-riser of the 2022 NFL Draft’s quarterback class. Thompson-Robinson has first-round talent.


Jarren Williams QB-USF
Williams, pictured, was more than capable in 2019 for the Hurricanes but is now entrenched in a quarterback battle at USF.

Jarren Williams (Dual) Miami: Ranked #4 by 247Sports, #8 by Rivals, & #6 by ESPN
Williams saw brief action as a freshman, with most of his playing time coming in 2019. He completed 61% of his passes with 19 touchdowns to just seven interceptions. However, Miami finished the year 6-7 and put out a futile effort in their bowl game (2019 Independence Bowl). Williams transferred to Garden City CC following the year and their season was cancelled due to COVID-19. He then enrolled at USF, where the former U.S. Army All-American is entrenched in a four-way battle for playing time amongst four contenders. The list includes former UNC quarterback Cade Fortin.

Matt Corral (Pro) Ole Miss: Ranked #5 by 247Sports, #3 by Rivals, & #6 by ESPN
Corral took over as the Rebels starting QB last season following limited action in his first two years. He finished the year completing nearly 71% of his passes with 29 touchdowns, while also adding over 500 rushing yards and four more scores to his season totals. Corral displayed his ability as a big-time thrower of the football in 2020. He passed for at least 300 yards in seven of 10 games, but he needs to cut down the turnovers (14 INTs, 4 fumbles-3 lost).

Tyler Shough QB-Texas Tech
Shough transferred to Texas Tech for the 2021 campaign despite compiling a 13:6 TD/INT ratio for the Ducks in 2020. Shough also had two games with over 80 yards on the ground.

Tyler Shough (Pro) Oregon: Ranked #6 by 247Sports & Rivals, #15 by ESPN
Shough appeared in five games as a redshirt freshman in 2019. In 2020, he took over as the team’s full-time starter, completing nearly 65% of his passes with 13 touchdowns in seven games. Following a disappointing end to the season, Shough decided to transfer to Texas Tech, where he’ll look to help turn a program around and build his draft stock over the next few years.

Phil Jurkovec (Dual) Notre Dame: Ranked #5 by 247Sports & Rivals, #9 by ESPN
Jurkovec saw minimal snaps during his first two seasons with the Fighting Irish due to a depth chart that included 30-game winner Ian Book. He transferred to Boston College and became the team’ starting QB in 2020. He threw for over 2,500 yards with 17 passing touchdowns and added another three rushing scores on the ground. Another impressive campaign in 2021 could land him as a mid-round selection in next year’s draft. He has certain characteristics that attract evaluators at the next level, including an ability to fit the ball into tight windows.

2021 NFL Draft Recap: NFC North

The 2021 NFL Draft Recap: NFC North breaks down the selections of all the division teams. The Detroit Lions prioritized the trenches under new HC Dan Campbell. While, the Chicago Bears and Minnesota Vikings look to the future at quarterback with Justin Fields and Kellen Mond. Can Eric Stokes (pictured) help the backend in Green Bay?

Detroit Lions     
SelectionTeamPlayer SelectionPosition- SchoolDN Big Board Rank/ GradeNotes
1st round, 7th overallDetroit LionsPenei Sewell6’5 331 OT-Oregon3/1st RoundSewell’s nastiness made him one of the best picks in this year’s draft and fits what the Lions are trying to do with a physical running game.
2nd round, 41st overallDetroit LionsLevi Onwuziurike6’3 297 DT-Senior41/2nd RoundDespite not being an elite interior pass rusher, there is room for Onwuzurike to develop into more in that facet of his game.
3rd round, 72nd overallDetroit LionsAlim McNeill6’2 317/DT-NG-NC State72/2nd RoundMcNeill has all of the tools to be a legitimate first and second down force as a zero-technique nose guard. His strength is sudden, particularly after establishing hand placement inside the numbers of centers or guards. The All-ACC defensive tackle can win laterally or to a spot, but there are questions about his ability to finish as a pass rusher.
3rd round, 101st overallDetroit LionsIfeatu Melifonwu6’3 213/CB-Syracuse187/3rd RoundHis tackling was solid for the most part, but he did not attack stalk blocks with a dominant mentality. Overall, Melifonwu played with awareness and attacked the three-step passing game. After a solid Senior Bowl week, he should hear his name called early on Day 3 of the draft process.
4th round, 112th overallDetroit LionsAmon-Ra St. Brown5’11 197/WR-USC21/2nd RoundTraffic. How do prospects play within the high traffic areas on the field? St. Brown attacks traffic as a route runner or blocker.
4th round, 113th overallDetroit Lions (from Carolina Panthers)Derrick Barnes6’0 245/LB-Purdue169/3rd RoundBarnes’ value depends on where a team decides to play him. In 2019, he was more than capable as a rush outside linebacker. We feel the former All-State running back’s feel for the game should be used in a multitude of roles. His experience on special teams helps his overall value.
7th round, 257th overallDetroit Lions (from Cleveland Browns)Jermar Jefferson5’10 206/RB-Oregon State222/4th RoundJefferson is a smooth effortless runner who is light on his feet with good contact balance. He squirts through holes, picks his feet up and uses subtle slide steps that cover distance going laterally.
Minnesota Vikings
SelectionTeamPlayer SelectionPosition- SchoolDN Big Board Rank/ GradeNotes
1st round, 23rd overallMinnesota Vikings (from New York Jets)Christian Darrisaw6’5 314 LT-Virginia Tech4/1st RoundThe Vikings get one of the draft’s best offensive line talents after sliding back in the first round. Good moves again by the Vikings front office.
3rd round, 66th overallMinnesota Vikings (from New York Jets)Kellen Mond6’3 211/QB-Texas A&M147/3rd RoundOverall, the Aggies’ all-time leader in total offense has a dual-threat game that largely translates to today’s NFL game. To put it all in perspective, he had 18 games with a rushing and passing touchdown in school.
3rd round, 78th overallMinnesota VikingsChazz Surratt6’2 227/LB-North Carolina132/3rd RoundSurratt is a converted QB and has limited reps as a linebacker although he did play safety in high school. The Tar Heels converted QB will be judged by his ability to learn the intricacies of the position, but in a short time he has shown the raw talent is there.
3rd round, 86th overallMinnesota Vikings (from New York Jets)Wyatt Davis6’3 315/OG-Ohio State63/2nd RoundThe Big Ten Offensive Lineman of the Year has paved the way for Ohio State’s running game and likely a spot for himself early in the 2021 NFL Draft. We were probably most impressed with his ability to re-anchor in the pass protection aspect of his game. His ability to play with a base gives him a chance versus some of the quicker leverage-based defensive tackles he will face at the next level.
3rd round, 90th overallMinnesota VikingsPatrick Jones II6’4 268/DE-Pittsburgh97/3rd RoundWe think the first-team All-American’s future in the NFL is as either a right defensive end or 30-front rush outside linebacker. As an outside linebacker, he will be able to operate with a little room to set up his pass rush moves. The former Virginia high school product has a game that blossomed the last two years
after serving an apprenticeship role back in 2018 (23 tackles, 4 QB sacks, 7.5 TFLs, FF).
4th round, 119th overallMinnesota VikingsKene Nwangwu6’0 212/RB-Iowa State171/3rd RoundNwangwu, a former prep level track and field star, has battled injuries while in school. He bounced back positively from an Achilles tendon injury in 2017 to embody what the Iowa State program currently represents from a leadership perspective. Even though he played second-fiddle to first-team All-American Breece Hall, it should not be a reflection of his own diverse talent.
4th round, 125th overallMinnesota Vikings (from Chicago Bears)Camryn Bynum6’0 198/CB-California236/4th RoundThere may be questions about Bynum’s flat-out speed, but we think those may concealed if used in a Vonn Bell-type roll at the next level.
4th round, 134th overallMinnesota Vikings (from Buffalo Bills; conditional)Janarius Robinson6'5 266/DE-FSU134/3rd RoundGames like the Clemson contest in 2019 display the potential of Robinson, who is a big defensive end with very good field speed. We even think he has the upside to potentially play an outside linebacker in a 3-4 defense. His quickness is tough to handle.
5th round, 157th overallMinnesota VikingsIhmir Smith-Marsette6'0 181/WR-Iowa146/3rd RoundHis foot speed is probably best represented with how well he carries his pads on Saturday afternoons. The instincts with the ball in his hands are first-rate, as is his peripheral vision to feel defenders around him in space.
5th round, 168th overallMinnesota Vikings (from Pittsburgh Steelers through Baltimore Ravens)Zach Davidson6'7 248/TE-Central Missouri250/4th RoundPlays TE and punts for the Mules. The team aligns him in the No. 2 slot, No. 3 slot, Y-TE and offset FB. If he can improve as an in-line blocker and eliminate the drops, his foot speed and athleticism gives him a chance to become even more.
6th round, 199th overallMinnesota VikingsJaylen Twyman6’2 301/DT-Pittsburgh316/4th RoundIt was impressive that he pumped out 40 repetitions at 225 pounds on his Pro Day in March. However, that really isn’t his game when you turn on the film. The 2019 second-team All-American has some lower body strength, but he is most satisfied winning with arm overs and swim moves.
Chicago Bears
SelectionTeamPlayer SelectionPosition- SchoolDN Big Board Rank/ GradeNotes
1st round, 11th overallChicago Bears (trade from New York Giants)Justin Fields6’3 227 QB-Ohio State31/2nd RoundFields goes to a football team where he can add arm strength to pierce balls through the wind and add diversity to the team’s running team.
2nd round, 39th overallChicago Bears (from Carolina Panthers)Tevin Jenkins6’6 317/OT-Oklahoma State20/2nd RoundJenkins needs more technique work, but he has improved for the most part during his career.
5th round, 151st overallChicago Bears (from Carolina Panthers)Larry Borom6’5 327/OL-Missouri183/3rd RoundHe should not have a problem with the power of the NFL game due to his wide base and strong trunk. Dealing with the speed of NFL pass rushers, however, could become an issue.
6th round, 217th overallChicago Bears (via Tampa Bay Buccaneers (compensatory selection)Khalil Herbert5’8 204 RB-Virginia Tech, Kansas203/4th RoundIt was a bit of a surprise that Herbert never returned kickoffs while at Kansas, but he became a hit at Virginia Tech in that regard.
In addition, his ball security ranks as a plus entering the NFL. Herbert never fumbled in the Big 12 or ACC. He may not have a dominant trait, but his smooth nature makes him difficult to get a grasp on down-to-down.
6th round, 221st overallChicago Bears (compensatory selection)Dazz Newsome5’10 190/All-purpose-North Carolina190/4th RoundHis 188 career receptions are supported by a nine yard per carry average and over 11 yards per punt return. Newsome is an all-purpose weapon with upside in the slot or the return game.
6th round, 228th overallChicago Bears (compensatory selection)Thomas Graham, Jr.5'10 193/CB-Oregon112/3rd RoundPrior to opting out of the 2020 season, he had already put together a full career’s worth of film for NFL teams to devour. He’s tough, competitive, sturdy and generally displayed good technique week-to-week in the Pac-12. He works to stay aligned in the team’s coverage concepts and is rarely out of position.
7th round, 250th overallChicago Bears (from Seattle Seahawks)Khyiris Tonga6’2 325/DT-BYU171/3rd RoundDid 35 bench press reps at 225 pounds. In today’s NFL, the splash interior defensive line prospects typically are able to work to half a man for quick penetration. This is not Tonga’s game. Where he does flash in the passing game revolves around his timing to cloud passing lanes. He finished his career with 12 pass deflections.
Green Bay Packers
SelectionTeamPlayer SelectionPosition- SchoolDN Big Board Rank/ GradeNotes
1st round, 29th overallGreen Bay PackersEric Stokes6’1 194/CB-Georgia35/2nd RoundStokes continued to get better year-to-year, but prior to 2020 he hadn’t finished on the ball. The 10.39 100-meter sprinter finished with four interceptions as a senior.
2nd round, 62nd overallGreen Bay PackersJosh Myers6’5 310/OC-Ohio State168/3rd Round10 1/2” hands. Myers is capable of getting to most of his spots but his hand placement is a question mark. He is a fit in a zone blocking scheme and it might be at a guard position as opposed to center.
3rd round, 85th overallGreen Bay Packers (from Tennessee Titans)Amari Rodgers5’9 212/WR-Clemson99/3rd RoundRodgers was just five months removed from a spring ACL tear (knee injury) in 2019, so did Tigers fans truly see the best he had to offer? If 2020 was any indication, then probably not. He looked stronger, more decisive and faster as a senior. In addition, his route-running savvy took another step forward. At 211 pounds, he is more than willing as a blocker, runs well after the catch and separates with timely cuts on option patterns.
4th round, 142nd overallGreen Bay Packers (compensatory selection)Royce Newman6’5 306/OL-Ole Miss234/4th RoundHe has started at OG (LG) and moved to RT in 2020. Allowed just one QB sack at OG in 2019. Plays with hot feet. We think he has positional versatility as a backup at three-to-four different line spots.
5th round, 173rd overallGreen Bay PackersTedarrell Slaton6’4 330/DT-Florida416/5th RoundHe seemed to get his weight down to around the 340-pound range in 2020 and it helped him play with more consistency. The projected two-down defender has upside as a zero-technique in three-man fronts and one-technique in four-man schemes.
5th round, 178th overallGreen Bay Packers (compensatory selection)Shemar Jean-Charles5'10 184/CB-Appalachian State171/3rd RoundTeam captain. One of the areas which stands out with Jean-Charles is his ability to accelerate in the move area (12-to-16 yards). Whether it is playing off-man or using a bail-and-run, he accelerates with energy once the receiver makes a decision to go vertical.
6th round, 214th overallGreen Bay PackersCole Van Lanen6’5 304/OT-Wisconsin156/3rd RoundVan Lanen has enough length to keep defenders at bay, but he is somewhat narrow overall. It will be import for him to unlock his hands with increased urgency to handle NFL-style pass rushers.
6th round, 220th overallGreen Bay Packers (compensatory selection)Isaiah McDuffie6'2 225/LB-Boston College248/4th RoundCollegiately, McDuffie was able to outrun a number of his mistakes. We don’t anticipate that remaining the same at the NFL level. The second-team All-ACC linebacker is a run-and-chase type who will need to be covered up as a Will linebacker.
7th round, 256th overallGreen Bay PackersKylin Hill5’10 214/Mississippi State83/3rd RoundHis low center of gravity allows him to slide and dart with square-stance cuts to get back north-south.
In 2020, no one was expecting to see Hill get 20 carries per game in first-year head coach Mike Leach’s air raid system. He never received more than seven (in a game).
Eric Stokes CB Green Bay Packers
2021 NFL Draft Recap: NFC North: Eric Stokes was drafted by the Green Bay Packers with the 29th pick overall.

2021 NFL Draft Recap: NFC West

The 2021 NFL Draft Recap: NFC West edition featured more than a few diminutive but exciting all purpose receiver selections. The Seattle Seahawks and Los Angeles Rams had limited picks in this year’s draft but opted to select smaller receivers in D’Wayne Eskridge and Tutu Atwell. San Francisco had to figure out the quarterback position after years of injuries to their signal callers, with that said, they traded up for Trey Lance. However, as Arizona showed, defensive picks can still be worthy of a first round selection (Zaven Collins- 16th overall). But as the trend seems to be, the Cardinals like LA and Seattle, drafted a short receiver in Rondale Moore (pictured above).

San Francisco 49ers     
SelectionTeamPlayer SelectionPosition- SchoolDN Big Board Rank/ GradeNotes
1st round, 3rd overallSan Francisco 49ersTrey Lance6’4 226/QB-North Dakota State34/2nd RoundLance goes to an offense that should spotlight his ability to operate on the edges or from inside the pocket.
2nd round, 48th overallSan Francisco 49ers (from Las Vegas Raiders)Aaron Banks6’5 338/OG-Notre Dame177/3rd RoundInside, he can move bodies with thump at the point of attack. His base will get too wide in pass protection and the challenge for him surrounds improving hand placement. Pass rushers have a tough time moving him if he can form a lockout and sit down in the chair.
3rd round, 88th overallSan Francisco 49ers (from Los Angeles Rams)Trey Sermon6'0 216/RB-Ohio State, Oklahoma57/2nd RoundHis strength is very good, as is his ability to pick his feet up through trash around his ankles and feet. We expect him to improve in pass protection due to his natural lower body explosiveness. He has upside as a receiver out of the backfield because he can make the first tackler miss in space. Durability issues aside, Sermon has starting potential in the NFL as a Melvin Gordon III-type (Denver Broncos).
3rd round, 102nd overallSan Francisco 49ersAmbry Thomas6’0 187/CB-Michigan53/2nd RoundOn the outside, he needs to be technique-sound because he is not necessarily a long corner. Thomas has lost quite a bit of practice time over the past two seasons and the fact that he has been able to still perform at a high level bodes well for his future prospects.
5th round, 155th overallSan Francisco 49ersJaylon Moore6’4 311/OT-Western Michigan164/3rd RoundMoore is durable and strong. This is where you have to begin with him because he has the ability to sit in the chair and grapple with opponents. Overall, he provides the ability to potentially backup three-to-four line positions.
5th round, 172nd overallSan Francisco 49ers (from New Orleans Saints)Deommodore Lenoir5’10 199/CB-Oregon137/3rd RoundFinished his career with 34 straight starts.
Lenoir wore three different numbers during his career and the results were largely the same in each year.
We think he is physical enough as a tackler that he could possibly move inside to safety.
5th round, 180th overallSan Francisco 49ers (compensatory selection)Talanoa Hufanga6’1 215/S-USC182/3rd RoundHufanga is an intense junior-entry who flies all over the field and brings quite a bit of juice when he unloads on contact. It is a big reason he was able to force four fumbles in school. We think his best attribute is an ability to blitz off the edge, either by disguise or when coming down late off of movement by the offense
6th round, 194th overallSan Francisco 49ersElijah Mitchell5’10 215/RB-Louisiana-Lafayette143/3rd RoundHe runs with power, contains a vertical style and rarely is caught moving side-to-side if unnecessary. Every three-to-four carries, he will bust a long carry (see Georgia State ‘20) due to his churning style. He does not mind taking the three-or-four-yard runs to set up the bigger carries.
Arizona Cardinals
SelectionTeamPlayer SelectionPosition- SchoolDN Big Board Rank/ GradeNotes
1st round, 16th overallArizona CardinalsZaven Collins6’4 260 LB-Tulsa13/1st RoundCollins’ skills can now pair with Simmons to give the Cardinals defensive flexibility in spades. The team adds a player who creates difficult one-on-one matchups for teams on third down.
2nd round, 49th overallArizona CardinalsRondale Moore5’7 180/WR-Purdue40/2nd RoundStrong in the lower body. Squats over 600 pounds. His ability to track the football overcomes a somewhat limited catch radius. Overall, he is a first-round talent with enough durability question marks to last until Day 2.
4th round, 136th overallArizona Cardinals (from Baltimore Ravens via Kansas City Chiefs)Marco Wilson6'0 187 Nickel/Florida131/3rd RoundThe former Freshman All-SEC defender can cover multiple spots, play as a big nickel and even contribute outside at
corner. Injuries were an issue in school. 4.38 speed. 43 1/2” VJ.
6th round, 210th overallArizona Cardinals (from Baltimore Ravens)Victor Dimukeje6'2 262/DE-OLB-Duke259/4th RoundDimukeje is a leverage-based pass rusher with experience both standing up and playing with his hand in the dirt. His bend will be questioned by NFL teams, but he overcomes that by attempting to lean on the offensive tackle's upfield shoulder.
6th round, 223rd overallArizona Cardinals (from Minnesota Vikings; compensatory selection)Tay Gowan6’1 186 CB/UCF341/5th RoundGowan is a tall, angular cornerback with positive football instincts and very good length for the outside cornerback spot. We were impressed with his balance and footwork when using a bail-and-run technique.
7th round, 243rd overallArizona CardinalsJames Wiggins5’11 20926/2nd RoundHe has everything NFL teams desire in flex-safeties with his combination of foot speed, short-area quickness and explosiveness on contact. In addition, he has extensive experience covering slot receivers in school. If there is a question on Wiggins, it revolves around some tightness in the lower half. Despite first-round talent, can Wiggins stay healthy?
7th round, 247th overallArizona Cardinals (from Chicago Bears through Las Vegas Raiders)Michal Menet6’4 312/OC-Penn State207-4th RoundMenet is one of the more balanced centers in this year’s draft class. Rarely out of control, Menet’s overall football awareness for blitzes, stunts and line games is very sound.
Los Angeles Rams
SelectionTeamPlayer SelectionPosition- SchoolDN Big Board Rank/ GradeNotes
2nd round, 57th overallLos Angeles RamsTutu Atwell5’9 155/WR-Louisville141/3rd RoundIf there is a more electric, elusive, fully-charged offensive player in the draft we haven’t found him. NFL teams just have to know what they’re purchasing.
Is it former Louisville wide receiver and two-time Pro Bowler Ernest Givens (Houston Oilers) or former West Virginia star Tavon Austin?
3rd round, 103rd overallLos Angeles RamsErnest Jones6'2 230/LB-South Carolina258/4th RoundJones, a junior-entry in the 2021 NFL Draft, has many tools worth taking a long look at for NFL teams. One of the things he has to improve at is getting offensive linemen off of his defensive linemen.
We think he would fit best as a run-and-chase Will linebacker at the next level because he still has to room to grow reading the triangle.
4th round, 117th overallLos Angeles Rams (from San Francisco 49ers)Bobby Brown III6'5 323/DT-Texas A&M96/3rd RoundThe first-team All-SEC defender contains lateral quickness, upper body strength and ankle flexibility. His inconsistent hand usage and up-and-down intensity are two drawbacks for teams looking for a consistent disruptor.
4th round, 130th overallLos Angeles RamsRobert Rochell6’0 195/CB-Central Arkansas129/3rd Round4.4 speed. 43 VJ. He tackles well enough and has thrown his body around with force and intent to clip the legs or wrap up ballcarriers. Rochell has all of the tools, but his technique simply has to get better for him to have a chance on Sunday afternoons.
4th round, 141st overallLos Angeles Rams (compensatory selection)Jacob Harris6'5 219/WR-UCF230/4th RoundIn watching and studying fellow receiver Gabriel Davis (Buffalo Bills) a season ago (2019), Harris kept showing up. The former soccer player’s stride sneaks up on unsuspecting cornerbacks and UCF quarterback Dillon Gabriel often had problems keeping up with it.
5th round, 174th overallLos Angeles Rams (from Buffalo Bills)Earnest Brown IV6’4 1/2” 270/DL-Northwestern217/4th RoundBlessed with an 82 1/4-inch wingspan and 34 1/2" arms, Brown IV can keep blockers away from him. We were impressed that he was able to drop into zones effectively and consistently affected the three-step passing game.
7th round, 233rd overallLos Angeles Rams (via Houston Texans (rom Cincinnati Bengals)Jake Funk5’10 204/All-Purpose-Maryland301/4th RoundSince Funk came out of high school, he has gotten bigger, stronger and faster in school. All of this occurred while enduring two torn ACLs to the same knee in consecutive seasons. This speaks to his work ethic and overall football character. Despite playing RB and averaging 8-plus yards per carry, Funk had 28 tackles in school on special teams.
7th round, 249th overallLA Rams (via Jacksonville Jaguars from Tennessee Titans)Ben Skowronek6'2 211/WR-Notre Dame276-4th RoundSkowronek’s wasted movement has improved dramatically since his freshman year at Northwestern. He closes the cushion of defenders with an underrated stride off the ball.
Most Northwestern fans will remember his game-winning diving touchdown grab that put the Wildcats in the 2018 Big Ten title game. He beat Denver Broncos starting cornerback Michael Ojemudia on the play.
Seattle Seahawks
SelectionTeamPlayer SelectionPosition- SchoolDN Big Board Rank/ GradeNotes
2nd round, 56th overallSeattle SeahawksD’Wayne Eskridge5’9 184/All-Purpose-Western Michigan115/3rd RoundDespite standing just 5-foot-9, he packs a solid 188 pounds on his frame. He breaks arm tackles and excels when he runs through the reception point, particularly on quick slants. His toughness is also exemplary, especially considering that he has played the cornerback position respectably and stood out crack blocking safeties. The 2020 MAC Special Teams Player of the Year fits the definition of an all-purpose prospect.
4th round, 137th overallSeattle SeahawksTre Brown5'9 184/CB-Oklahoma179/3rd RoundBrown is an ultra-quick cornerback with good transition ability to drop his weight on intermediate routes. Physically, he may have to deal with the physical rigors of a nickel position to secure a spot in a Seattle’s defensive back rotation.
6th round, 208th overallSeattle Seahawks (from Chicago Bears)Stone Forsythe6’8 307/OT-Florida452/6th RoundNFL bloodlines. Has started at RT and LT. Also has seen time at OG. Looks the part.
During the postseason, it was important for the former Gator to prove that his ability to hold down a starting spot on the blindside in the SEC had as much to do with his movement as it did his size. Mission accomplished.

2021 NFL Draft Recap: NFC East

As you will see in our 2021 NFL Draft Recap, each team selected at least one edge rusher. You could say, The NFC East got defensive in the 2021 NFL Draft! Philadelphia and New York used first round draft picks (DeVonta Smith and Kadarius Toney) to help their young quarterbacks. The Dallas Cowboys and Washington Football Team already have veteran quarterbacks and they chose to add linebackers with versatility: Micah Parsons and Jamin Davis. However, there was more than just linebackers and receivers targeted, Washington, Philadelphia and Dallas selected offensive linemen. Will any of these players propel a division that didn’t have a team finish with over a .500 record in 2021?

Philadelphia Eagles     
SelectionTeamPlayer SelectionPosition- SchoolDN Big Board Rank/ GradeNotes
1st round, 10th overallPhiladelphia Eagles (From Dallas Cowboys)DeVonta Smith6’0 166 WR-Alabama1/1st RoundThe 2020 Heisman Trophy winner will get an opportunity to re-unite with his former QB too, just like Waddle and Chase earlier in the draft.
2nd round, 37th overallPhiladelphia EaglesLandon Dickerson6’6 326/C-Alabama56/2nd RoundDickerson presents a unique multiple skill-set for NFL teams, having started at four different offensive line positions. Availability has always been the concern for the former five-star recruit.
3rd round, 73rd overallPhiladelphia Eagles (From Carolina Panthers)Milton Williams6’3 284/DT-DE Louisiana Tech42/2nd RoundDue to Louisiana Tech’s lack of size on the three-man defensive front, he was used most frequently at the four-or-five-technique defensive end positions. He was also seen occasionally standing up to rush from an outside linebacker spot on third downs. There was a comfort level exhibited in his play to overpower some tackles and interior guards by dropping his shoulder, but he can play effectively with his hands to disengage.
4th round, 123rd overallPhiladelphia EaglesZech McPhearson5'11 195/CB-Texas Tech, Penn State152/3rd RoundMcPhearson, a former four-star recruit, was seen inside as a nickel. McPhearson displayed a good feel of reacting to motion, breaking downhill on the football and running with crossing routes.
5th round, 150th overallPhiladelphia EaglesKenneth Gainwell5’8 203 All-Purpose/Memphis125/3rd RoundGainwell is the mini-sized version of former Memphis running back/wide receiver Antonio Gibson (Washington Redskins). Whether he will have the type of impact at the next level is debatable, especially due to his relative lack of bulk.
6th round, 189th overallPhiladelphia EaglesMarlon Tuipulotu6'1 308/DT-USC320/4th RoundTuipulotu flashes in spots. Never was that more evident than in the first two games of the 2020 campaign, where he flashed improved quickness and burst getting off the snap. Too many times, however, he struggled to hold the point of attack versus double teams
6th round, 191th overallPhiladelphia EaglesTarron Jackson6'2 260/DE-Coastal Carolina124/3rd RoundJackson has a strong enough lower base and enough juice to handle run game assignments versus most tight ends and some offensive tackles. The All-Sun Belt defender contains enough length to jolt linemen with one-hand posts and uses those to set up his inside or outside arm-overs.
6th round, 224th overallPhiladelphia EaglesJaCoby Stevens6’2 216/S-LB-LSU266/4th RoundStevens, a former collegiate wide receiver, brings an intriguing skill-set to the NFL.
As a linebacker, he clearly is still learning the nuances of the position but -while doing so- can offer the ability to match tight ends. For that to happen, he has to attack run game concepts the same way he attacks blitz assignments.
7th round, 234th overallPhiladelphia EaglesPatrick Johnson6'2 240/OLB-Tulane251/4th RoundTulane’s all-time career sack leader does a fine job of creating angles and getting his feet pointed in a path towards the quarterback as a pass rusher. Offensive tackles have a tough time gaining an area on his frame to pin and prevent his upfield charge. 24.5 career QB sacks.
Dallas Cowboys
SelectionTeamPlayer SelectionPosition- SchoolDN Big Board Rank/ GradeNotes
1st round, 12th overallDallas Cowboys (from Philadelphia Eagles)Micah Parsons6’3 246 LB-Penn State2/1st RoundParsons’ speed goes with rare size at the position. He has a chance to develop in Dan Quinn’s system.
2nd round, 44th overallDallas CowboysKelvin Joseph5’11 1/2” 197/CB-Kentucky, LSU37/2nd RoundJoseph’s ability to squeeze routes from the outside-in in man or zone coverage is extremely impressive. There will be few cornerbacks in this year’s draft class with his level of fluidity. There were problems with communication in coverage.
3rd round, 75th overallDallas CowboysOsa Odighizuwa6’2 280/DT-UCLA106/3rd RoundHis feel for blocking schemes is inconsistent and he is still searching for secondary pass rush counters. Balance is something that needs to be monitored moving forward. At 280 pounds with 10 3/4-inch hands, it seems that he is destined for a role at defensive end in a three-man front.
3rd round, 84th overallDallas Cowboys (from Philadelphia Eagles)Chauncey Golston6’4 268/DE-Iowa74/3rd RoundGolston is easily one of the most valuable defensive lineman in this year’s draft. He can play the three-technique defensive tackle on passing downs, possible four-or-five-technique defensive end (three or four-man front) or rush as a stand-up outside linebacker. A veteran defensive coordinator may attempt to use the first-team All-Big Ten defender in all of the above-referenced roles.
3rd round, 99th overallDallas Cowboys (Compensatory Pick)Nahshon Wright6’4 188/CB-Oregon State357/5th RoundWright is a tall corner with good feet and a solid backpedal. His challenge will be to constrict his movements in tight areas when it is time to transition versus quicker receivers. For him to do that, he must find a happy medium between being comfortable and not playing too low. His feet don't always stay planted in the ground when flipping to open or break at 45-or-90-degree angles.
4th round, 115th overallDallas CowboysJabril Cox6’3 233/LB-LSU, North Dakota State46/2nd RoundHe has a number of similarities to former Washington LB Cory Littleton (Rams, Raiders) There were questions about Littleton’s pure physicality coming out of school. Cox’s size, body composition and pass coverage skills point to him being further advanced at this same stage.
4th round, 138th overallDallas Cowboys (Compensatory Pick)Josh Ball6’7 308/OT-Marshall, FSU215/4th RoundBall’s entire career has featured a number of up-and-downs, but his final two years at Marshall represented a modicum of consistency.
He is quick-footed, balanced and massive.
5th round, 178th overallDallas Cowboys (Compensatory Pick)Simi Fehoko6'4 224/WR-Stanford142/3rd RoundWe are impressed with how sudden Fehoko uses his stick moves to move the cornerback off the spot; particularly for a man of his size.
16 reps-225 lbs, 4.47 40-yd, 34 1/2” VJ
6th round, 192nd overallDallas Cowboys (from Detroit Lions)Quinton Bohanna6'4 345/DT-Kentucky262/4th RoundNFL bloodlines.
For a 350-pound defensive lineman, Bohanna will surprise with his quickness laterally to escape blockers. As a result, he has a tendency to get tied up leaning on interior offensive linemen due to inconsistent hand usage.
6th round, 227th overallDallas Cowboys (Compensatory Pick)Israel Mukuamu6'4 212/CB-South Carolina162/3rd RoundHas started at both safety and CB. Very good ball skills have shown up throughout his career.
7th round, 238th overallDallas CowboysMatt Farniok6’5 311/OL-Nebraska326/5th RoundIt was really no surprise that Farniok, a two-time team captain and four-time Academic All-Big Ten selection, displayed positional versatility in 2020. The team’s 2019 Offensive Lineman of the Year had developed into at least a serviceable right tackle before making the switch to right guard full-time in 2020.
New York Giants
SelectionTeamPlayer SelectionPosition- SchoolDN Big Board Rank/ GradeNotes
1st round, 20th overallNew York Giants (from Chicago Bears)Kadarius Toney5’11 189 All-Purpose/Florida49/2nd RoundHis ability to get in-and-out of traffic with the ball in his hands makes him a threat as an all-purpose prospect and slot WR.
2nd round, 50th overallNew York Giants (from Miami Dolphins)Azeez Ojulari6’2 249/DE-OLB Georgia45/2nd RoundOjulari is a defensive end/outside linebacker with underrated strength and positive hand usage. There were occasions where his size created limitations, but he generally exhibited satisfactory upper body strength.
3rd round, 71st overallNew York Giants (from Denver Broncos)Aaron Robinson5’11 190/Nickel-UCF, Alabama58/2nd RoundRobinson fits the bill of what you need at the nickel back posi-tion in today’s NFL. Some of the most popular NFL route concepts feature crossers, in-breaking dig patterns. Of all the corners or nickel backs in this year’s draft class, he closes distance on these types of concepts with the most urgency.
4th round, 116th overallNew York GiantsElerson G. Smith6’6 262/DE-Northern Iowa107/3rd RoundWe feel he gives teams options because he may be able to slide inside on third downs and play some three-technique defensive tackle. A viable argument can be made that his skill-set could actually be best served as a stand-up rush outside linebacker for 3-4 teams.
6th round, 196th overallNew York GiantsGary Brightwell6’1 218/RB-Arizona413/5th RoundBrightwell brought attitude to the table as a runner at the collegiate level. He combines decent vision with enough awareness in pass protection.
6th round, 201st overallNew York Giants (from Arizona Cardinals)Rodarius Williams6'0 189/CB-Oklahoma State197/4th RoundPlaying off-man could be a bit of a challenge as he has to transition from the junction limit in college football to the NFL. A solid prospect with NFL bloodlines, he is following in the footsteps of his younger brother, ‘Greedy’ Williams (Cleveland Browns)
Washington Football Team
SelectionTeamPlayer SelectionPosition- SchoolDN Big Board Rank/ GradeNotes
1st round, 19th overallWashington Football TeamJamin Davis6’4 234 LB-Kentucky61/2nd RoundHC Ron Rivera finds a linebacker who has the traits to become like the LBs he had in Carolina.
2nd round, 51st overallWashington Football TeamSamuel Cosmi6’6 314/OT-Texas62/2nd RoundCosmi has reserved a spot in scouts’ attention for the better portion of a two-year period. He’s balanced, quick and fluid in his movements at the left tackle spot.
3rd round, 74th overallWashington Football TeamBenjamin St. Juste6’3 205/CB-Minnesota, Michigan192/4th RoundHis footwork is clean, and this is why he was able to defend so effectively in the Red Zone. Ball skills are important. St. Juste didn’t have any interceptions, but he played through his inside shoulder to stay in-phase with wideouts in this part of the field.
3rd round, 82nd overallWashington Football TeamDyami Brown6’1 189/WR-UNC86/3rd RoundThe former prep level 200-meter sprinter tracks the football over either shoulder and has shown good spatial awareness along the back end lines or sidelines. He has solid body control to adjust to poorly thrown passes. The biggest issue teams will have regarding the first-team All-ACC speedster revolves around the concentration lapses. They came in the form of penalties and dropped passes.
4th round, 124th overallWashington Football TeamJohn Bates6’5 259/TE-Boise State226/4th RoundBates is a smooth tight end with excellent size, deceptive stride length and good catch radius for the position. He has been used as an insert blocker in school, down tight end and occasional flexed-out slot receiver.
5th round, 163rd overallWashington Football TeamDarrick Forrest6'0 200/S-Cincinnati136/3rd RoundWhile teammate James Wiggins has received quite a bit of attention while in school, Forrest was a steady hand with the Bearcats. Forrest is instinctive, plays fast, disguises coverage and contributes on all four downs.
6th round, 225th overallWashington Football Team (from Philadelphia Eagles compensatory selection)Cameron Cheeseman6’4 237/LS-Michigan565/N/APosted a 0.69 second long snap on his first
snap of the 2020 Citrus Bowl (1st QTR/14:09). Posted a .72 long snap on his second punt (1st QTR/11:56, Alabama ‘20). Challenged by pure foot speed in coverage.
7th round, 240th overallWashington Football Team (from Philadelphia Eagles)William Bradley-King6’3 254/DE-OLB-Arkansas State161/3rd RoundOne of the things that Bradley-King will have to do better at the next level revolves around timing snap counts. This is something that we think he should be able to correct. We think his effort and tenacity have been first-rate dating back to his time at Arkansas State.
7th round, 246th overallWashington Football TeamShaka Toney6’3 238/DE-Penn State195/4th RoundThere is some polish to Toney's pass rushing skill-set, but his size gets him swallowed up by bigger tackles. The positive is that he has enough wingspan and length to go to pole moves from time-to-time and that may be able to set up some of his counters.
7th round, 258th overallWashington Football Team (from Miami Dolphins)Dax Milne6’0 193/WR-BYU266/4th RoundIn studying Milne, it is important to watch him as he gets into the fourth or fifth steps of his route. Often times, he begins to idle his stride to gauge the defensive back’s technique before re-accelerating.

Rashawn Slater OT-Northwestern: “Slater slayin”

Northwestern’s Rashawn Slater has all of the requisite tools to suggest he can become an intriguing starting option for NFL teams. The 37-game Big Ten starter is light on his feet and finishes assignments with tenacity. Despite weighing in the 305-pound range, Slater plays a much bigger game on Saturday afternoons. The Clements High School (Tex.) product has shown an ability to play on either side of the offensive line.

Rashawn Slater pictured in the 2018 SDCU Holiday Bowl
During his career, Slater (pictured in the 2018 Holiday Bowl) started at both tackle spots for the Wildcats.

Zach Wilson QB-BYU: 2021 NFL Draft Preview

Former BYU quarterback Zach Wilson led the Cougars to two bowl victories and three bowl game appearances during his three-year run in Provo. After recovering from injury setbacks as a sophomore, he led his team to an 11-1 record in 2020. Prior to injury in 2019, Wilson faced what proved to be the stiffest competition of his career. In a three-week span, BYU took on Tennessee, Southern Cal and Washington. He found a way to win two of the three contests. We look back at some of best moments during the stretch.

2021 Seven-Round NFL Mock Draft

The 2021 NFL Draft is quickly approaching. Where will quarterbacks like Zach Wilson and Trevor Lawrence land? Do the Atlanta Falcons target a weapon for Matt Ryan? DraftNasty’s 2021 seven-round NFL Mock Draft will answer some of your questions about how we project each team will pick. In this mock draft, we used a variety of factors to determine who each team will pick including: past general manager selections, team needs, current roster after free agency and the impact a player could have immediately.

For example, does the Washington Football Team target a quarterback since they already signed Ryan Fitzpatrick and, if so, will they reach for a quarterback if the top four prospects at the position are taken? Scroll below to see but, unlike other Mock Drafts, we factor in the front offices. Remember, Washington has a unique conglomerate of GM-esque decision makers: HC Ron Rivera, GM Martin Mayhew and executive VP Marty Hurney.

Another important factor in our Mock Draft is the 2021 DraftNasty Big Board. There are more than 550 prospects on the Big Board this season. Note: the complete Big Board can be found in our 2021 NFL Draft Guide, which is available for purchase.

SelectionTeamPlayer selectionPositionSchoolNotes
1st Round
1st overallJacksonville JaguarsTrevor LawrenceQBClemsonLawrence's underrated athleticism works for an offense that already features a 1,000-yard rusher and two 1,000-yard receivers.
2nd overallNew York JetsZach WilsonQBBYUWilson could be a BYU mix of former Cougar standouts Jim McMahon and Steve Young.
3rd overallSan Francisco 49ersJustin FieldsQBOhio StateSan Francisco wouldn't trade up for anything other than a quarterback. Fields finds a home early in the draft.
4th overallAtlanta FalconsKyle PittsTEFloridaNew HC Arthur Smith adds to Ryan's vast array of weapons in hopes of recapturing MVP form.
5th overallCincinnati BengalsPenei SewellOTOregonThe Bengals get added protection for quarterback Joe Burrow.
6th overallMiami DolphinsJa'Marr ChaseWRLSUReuniting with former teammate D. Smith would have been nice, but Dolphins pick '19 Biketnikoff winner.
7th overallDetroit LionsMicah ParsonsLBPenn StateNew HC Dan Campbell drafts a talented linebacker he can build defense around.
8th overallCarolina PanthersRashawn SlaterOTNorthwesternNo matter who plays QB, the Panthers have to do a better job protecting the passer up front.
9th overallDenver BroncosChristian DarrisawOTVirginia TechThe Broncos spend a high pick on an insurance policy if Ja'Wuan James can't return to 2019 form after opting out of the 2020 campaign.
10th overallDallas CowboysPatrick Surtain IICBAlabamaCan you win with two Alabama CBs on the edges? We are about to find out.
11th overallNew York GiantsJeremiah Owusu- KoramoahLBNotre DameNew York targeted offensive weapons during free agency and now they add another piece to its improving defense.
12th overallPhiladelphia EaglesJaycee HornCBSouth CarolinaHowie Roseman takes one of the best corners off the board but in reality he may continue his trend of reaching for position players.
13th overallLos Angeles ChargersKwity PayeDE/LBMichiganLos Angeles bolsters its defensive front seven with a Melvin Ingram-clone.
14th overallMinnesota VikingsAlijah Vera-TuckerOG/OTUSCMinnesota adds to their offensive line with Vera-Tucker, who can play both guard and tackle.
15th overallNew England PatriotsDeVonta SmithWRAlabamaNew England could add Trey Lance here, but instead they opt for Smith, our number one overall prospect.
16th overallArizona CardinalsCaleb FarleyCBVirginia TechArizona brushes off injury concerns and picks arguably the draft's most talented corner.
17th overallLas Vegas RaidersZaven CollinsLBTulsaOakland gets some help at the linebacker position. Collins can help their pass rush and aid last year's back end selections.
18th overallMiami DolphinsTeven JenkinsOTOklahoma StateHC Brian Flores gets some help along the offensive line after drafting a receiver early in the proceedings.
19th overallWashington Football TeamTrey LanceQBNorth Dakota StateHC Ron Rivera gets his new-age version of former MVP Cam Newton.
20th overallChicago BearsJaylen WaddleWRAlabamaChicago spices up its offensive weapons, but can Waddle remain healthy?
21st overallIndianapolis ColtsGregory RousseauDEMiami (Fla.)Rousseau slides to the AFC South, where his size will mesh with fellow 6'7 stalwart DeForest Buckner
22nd overallTennessee TitansChristian BarmoreDTAlabamaTennessee went with Bud Dupree in free agency and now adds an interior disruptor to its defensive front seven.
23rd overallNew York JetsNajee HarrisRBAlabamaThe Jets get a power back to go with their power left tackle in Mekhi Becton.
24th overallPittsburgh SteelersTravis EtienneRBClemsonNow that the run on running backs has started, Pittsburgh gets a new featured back. Etienne's improved receiving skills help the room.
25th overallJacksonville JaguarsTrevon MoehrigSTCUThe Jim Thorpe Award winner adds stability in a division with plenty of big receiving threats.
26th overallCleveland BrownsJevon HollandS/ Nickel/ ReturnOregonCleveland opts not to reach for a linebacker but instead bring in a swiss army knife defender.
27th overallBaltimore RavensAzeez OjulariOLBGeorgiaThe Ravens go all-in on Ojulari, a burgeoning pass rusher and underrated run defender.
28th overallNew Orleans SaintsMac JonesQBAlabamaSean Payton gets an accurate signal caller, who will compete with Jameis Winston and Taysom Hill for the starting job.
29th overallGreen Bay PackersRashod BatemanWRMinnesotaBateman is used to the cold and he'll find some more of it Wisconsin.
30th overallBuffalo BillsJaelan PhillipsDE/OLBMiami (Fla.)Phillips could be the steal of the first round, but can he remain healthy?
31st overallBaltimore RavensLiam EichenbergOTNotre DameSolid player who will pair with fellow Fighting Irish tackle on the other side.
32nd overallTampa Bay BuccaneersTerrace Marshall Jr.WRLSUTom Brady gets an outside weapon to replace Antonio Brown if he isn't retained.
2nd Round
33rd overallJacksonville JaguarsRichie GrantSUCFThe former UCF star can go right down the road to change addresses.
34th overallNew York JetsKelvin JosephCBKentucky/ LSUThe pick here will be between Joseph and Stokes. Or does Campbell usurp Stokes?
35th overallAtlanta FalconsEric StokesCBGeorgiaRead the above note.
36th overallMiami DolphinsMilton WilliamsDLLouisiana TechVersatile skill-set fits Flores' scheme. Offers outside/inside presence.
37th overallPhiladelphia EaglesBaron BrowningLBOhio StateBrowning could be an immediate Day 1 starter at OLB for a team that now has addressed its front seven and back end.
38th overallCincinnati BengalsTrey SmithOGTennesseeIf he can keep his weight at a balance under control, then Bengals secure potential Pro Bowl talent with swing versatility.
39th overallCarolina PanthersJabril CoxLBLSUA Shaq Thompson/ Jabril Cox pairing would draw similarities to fellow NFC South tandem Devin White and Lavonte David.
40th overallDenver BroncosLevi OnwuzurikeDLWashingtonTeam solves some of its depth issues with quick interior line disruptor.
41st overallDetroit LionsKadarius ToneyWR-RetFloridaThe Lions take a calculated gamble here, but the Florida receiver will slip no further.
42nd overallNew York GiantsGreg Newsome IICBNorthwesternNewsome II can become a starter, but health is the question mark.
43rd overallSan Francisco 49ersPaulson AdeboCBStanford49ers go right down Rte. 101 for a cornerback from Stanford.
44th overallDallas CowboysCarlos "Boogie" BashamDE/ DTWake ForestJerry Jones brings in the cousin of Tarell Basham to help with the departure of Aldon Smith.
45th overallJacksonville JaguarsDillon RadunzOTNorth Dakota StateRadunz brings an athletic presence to the edges and is insurance if Robinson doesn't regain form.
46th overallNew England PatriotsJamin DavisLBKentuckyBill Belichick brings in another linebacker who can contribute immediately for an unproven group sans Dont'a Hightower.
47th overallLos Angeles ChargersTyson CampbellCBGeorgiaTechnically, he's a work in progress, but Chargers bet on size, speed and SEC experience.
48th overallLas Vegas RaidersHamsah NasirildeenS/LBFSUNew DC Gus Bradley gets another athletic hybrid player in the second round.
49th overallArizona CardinalsJoe TryonDE-OLBWashingtonCardinals add an edge rusher with upside in Round 2.
50th overallMiami DolphinsJavonte WilliamsRBUNCWilliams adds some power to the backfield alongside Myles Gaskin and Salvon Ahmed.
51st overallWashington Football TeamRondale MooreWR-RetPurdueMoore opens up the offense with gadget possibilities alongside versatile Gibson.
52nd overallChicago BearsDavis MillsQBStanfordMills could see action in the middle of the season if things go south with Andy Dalton and Nick Foles.
53rd overallTennessee TitansDayo OdeyingboDEVanderbiltMuch like former first-round pick Simmons, Titans put injured Odeyingbo on ice.
54th overallIndianapolis ColtsElijah MooreWROle MissWe contemplated Elijah Moore here in the first round but the Colts get him a round later to be the successor to T.Y. Hilton.
55th overallPittsburgh SteelersWyatt DavisOGOhio StateSteelers seek to regain identity up front.
56th overallSeattle SeahawksAmbry ThomasCBMichiganThe Seahawks were 31st in pass defense last season, Thomas helps them.
57th overallLos Angeles RamsCaden SternsSTexasSterns' range could help alleviate the loss of Johnson in free agency.
58th overallKansas City ChiefsCam SampleDE/ OLBTulaneHC Andy Reid adds to his defense. The Buccaneers kept their defensive linemen fresh in the Super Bowl, now KC can do likewise.
59th overallCleveland BrownsNick BoltonLBMissouriThe Browns need a tone-setter in the middle of their defense. Bolton brings thump and leadership.
60th overallNew Orleans SaintsAlim McNeillDTNC StateThe Saints have to address their interior defensive line and McNeill is a solid remedy.
61st overallBuffalo BillsRonnie PerkinsDE-OLBOklahomaBuffalo brings in yet another pass rusher in the second round for the second year in a row.
62nd overallGreen Bay PackersAsante Samuel Jr.CBFSUJaire Alexander and Asante Samuel Jr. are two of the more competitive cornerbacks and will be needed as they battle for conference supremacy with the loaded Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
63rd overallKansas City ChiefsSamuel CosmiOTTexasThe pick here is either Cosmi or Michigan's Jalen Mayfield. The Chiefs go with the traits.
64th overallTampa Bay BuccaneersJay TufeleDTUSCTufele will learn from one of the league's better interior defenders of teh last decade in Ndamukong Suh.
3rd Round
65th overallJacksonville JaguarsMichael CarterRB-RetUNC
66th overallNew York JetsLandon DickersonOG/CAlabama
67th overallHouston TexansKellen MondQBTexas A&M
68th overallAtlanta FalconsTrey SermonRBOhio State, Oklahoma
69th overallCincinnati BengalsMalcolm KoonceDE-OLBBuffalo
70th overallPhiladelphia EaglesAmon-Ra St. BrownWRUSC
71st overallDenver BroncosChauncey GolstonDLIowa
72nd overallDetroit LionsElijah MoldenS-NickelWashington
73rd overallCarolina PanthersPat FreiermuthTEPenn State
74th overallWashington Football TeamBrevin JordanTE- H-BackMiami (Fla.)
75th overallDallas CowboysBen ClevelandOGGeorgia
76th overallNew York GiantsKenneth GainwellAll-PurposeMemphis
77th overallLos Angeles ChargersJalen MayfieldOTMichigan
78th overallMinnesota VikingsCreed HumphreyOGOklahoma
79th overallLas Vegas RaidersAaron RobinsonCBUCF
80th overallLas Vegas RaidersDaviyon NixonDTIowa
81st overallMiami DolphinsAlex LeatherwoodOTAlabama
82nd overallWashington Football TeamMonty RiceLBGeorgia
83rd overallChicago BearsJames HudsonOTCincinnati
84th overallPhiladelphia EaglesChazz SurrattLBUNC
85th overallTennessee TitansTommy TrembleTENotre Dame
86th overallNew York JetsJayson OwehDE-OLBPenn State
87th overallPittsburgh SteelersMarco WilsonCBFlorida
88th overallLos Angeles RamsBrady ChristensenOTBYU
89th overallCleveland BrownsShaun WadeCBOhio State
90th overallMinnesota VikingsKyle TraskQBFlorida
91st overallCleveland BrownsOsa OdighizuwaDTUCLA
92nd overallGreen Bay PackersSpencer BrownOTNorthern Iowa
93rd overallBuffalo BillsZech McPhearsonCBTexas Tech
94th overallBaltimore RavensDavid MooreOGGrambling State
95th overallTampa Bay BuccaneersQuincy RocheDE-OLBMiami (Fla.)
96th overallNew England PatriotsAdetokunbo OgundejiDENotre Dame
97th overallLos Angeles ChargersRobert JonesOLMiddle Tennessee
98th overallNew Orleans SaintsIhmir Smith-MarsetteAll-PurposeIowa
99th overallDallas CowboysPete WernerLBOhio State
100th overallTennessee TitansShi SmithWRSouth Carolina
101th overallDetroit LionsDyami BrownWRUNC
102nd overallMiami DolphinsNico CollinsWRMichigan
103rd overallLos Angeles RamsKendrick GreenOGIllinois
104th overallBaltimore RavensJosh PalmerWRTennessee
105th overallNew Orleans SaintsDylan MosesLBAlabama
4th Round
106th overallJacksonville JaguarsHunter LongTEBoston College
107th overallNew York JetsAndre CiscoSSyracuse
108th overallAtlanta FalconsPatrick Jones IIDE-OLBPittsburgh
109th overallHouston TexansMarvin WilsonDTFSU
110th overallCleveland Browns (from Philadelphia Eagles)Tyler ShelvinDTLSU
111th overallCincinnati BengalsTylan WallaceWROklahoma State
112th overallDetroit LionsBuddy JohnsonLBTexas A&M
113th overallCarolina PanthersD’Ante SmithOT-OGECU
114th overallDenver BroncosJoseph OssaiDE-OLBTexas
115th overallDallas CowboysCharles Snowden IIIDE-OLBVirginia
116th overallNew York GiantsChris Rumph IIOLBDuke
117th overallSan Francisco 49ersDivine DeabloS-LBVirginia Tech
118th overallLos Angeles ChargersElerson G. SmithDE-OLBNorthern Iowa
119th overallMinnesota VikingsAmari RodgersAll-PurposeClemson
120th overallNew England PatriotsTarron JacksonDECoastal Carolina
121st overallLas Vegas RaidersRobert HainseyOT-OGNotre Dame
122nd overallNew England Patriots (from Arizona Cardinals through Houston Texans)Seth WilliamsWRAuburn
123rd overallPhiladelphia Eagles (from Miami Dolphins)Kylin HillRBMississippi State
124th overallWashington Football TeamJackson CarmanOT-OGClemson
125th overallMinnesota Vikings (from Chicago Bears)Janarius RobinsonDE-OLBFlorida State
126th overallTennessee TitansDan MooreOTTexas A&M
127th overallIndianapolis ColtsJamar JohnsonSIndiana
128th overallPittsburgh SteelersJimmy MorrisseyOC-OGPittsburgh
129th overallSeattle SeahawksRobert RochellCBCentral Arkansas
130th overallJacksonville Jaguars (from Los Angeles Rams)Quinn MeinerzOC-OGWisconsin-Whitewater
131st overallBaltimore RavensIfeatu MelifonwuCBSyracuse
132nd overallCleveland BrownsD’Wayne EskridgeAll-PurposeWestern Michigan
133rd overallNew Orleans SaintsJames WigginsSCincinnati
134th overallMinnesota Vikings (from Buffalo Bills; conditional)Chatarius “TuTu” AtwellWRLouisville
135th overallGreen Bay PackersAmen OgbongbemigaLBOklahoma State
136th overallBaltimore Ravens (from Kansas City Chiefs)Darren HallCB-NickelSan Diego State
137th overallTampa Bay BuccaneersHamilcar Rashed, Jr. OLBOregon State
138th overallDallas Cowboys (compensatory selection)Rodarius WilliamsCBOklahoma State
139th overallNew England Patriots (compensatory selection)Cameron McGroneLBMichigan
140th overallPittsburgh Steelers (compensatory selection)Thomas Graham, Jr.CBOregon
141st overallLos Angeles Rams (compensatory selection)Derrick BarnesLBPurdue
142nd overallGreen Bay Packers (compensatory selection)Ta’Quon GrahamDE-DTTexas
143rd overallMinnesota Vikings (compensatory selection)Garret WallowLBTCU
144th overallKansas City Chiefs (compensatory selection)Sadarius HutchersonOG-OTSouth Carolina
5th Round
145th overallJacksonville JaguarsJosh MyersOC-OGOhio State
146th overallNew York JetsPressley Harvin IIIPGeorgia Tech
147th overallHouston TexansAntonio PhillipsCB-NickelBall State
148th overallAtlanta FalconsMichael MenetOC-OGPenn State
149th overallCincinnati BengalsChuba HubbardRBOklahoma State
150th overallPhiladelphia EaglesBobby Brown IIIDT-NGTexas A&M
151st overallCarolina PanthersFranklin “Mac” McCain IIICBNorth Carolina A&T
152nd overallDenver BroncosShemar Jean-CharlesCB-NickelAppalachian State
153rd overallDetroit LionsWilliam Bradley-KingDE-OLBBaylor, Arkansas State
154th overallNew York Jets (from New York Giants)Tre McKittyTE/H-backGeorgia, FSU
155th overallSan Francisco 49ersIsrael MukuamuCB-S-NickelSouth Carolina
156th overallMiami Dolphins (from Dallas Cowboys through Philadelphia Eagles)Drew DalmanOCStanford
157th overallMinnesota VikingsJonathan MarshallDT-NGArkansas
158th overallHouston Texans (from New England Patriots)Tamorrion TerryWRFSU
159th overallLos Angeles ChargersAaron BanksOGNotre Dame
160th overallArizona CardinalsJack AndersonOC-OGTexas Tech
161st overallBuffalo Bills (from Las Vegas Raiders)Brenden JaimesOT-OGNebraska
162nd overallLas Vegas Raiders (from Miami Dolphins)Jordan SmithDE-OLBUAB, Florida
163rd overallWashington Football TeamJaylon MooreOT-OGWestern Michigan
164th overallChicago BearsSimi FehokoWRStanford
165th overallIndianapolis ColtsDaelin HayesDE-OLBNotre Dame
166th overallTennessee TitansK.J. BrittLBAuburn
167th overallLas Vegas Raiders (from Seattle Seahawks)Talanoa HufangaS-LBUSC
168th overallMinnesota Vikings (from Pittsburgh Steelers through Baltimore Ravens)Jose BorregalesPKMiami (Fla.), FIU
169th overallCleveland Browns (from Los Angeles Rams)Riley PattersonPKMemphis
170th overallJacksonville Jaguars (from Cleveland Browns)Tedarrell “TJ” SlatonDT-NGFlorida
171st overallBaltimore RavensSam CooperOGMerrimack College, Maine
172nd overallSan Francisco 49ers (from New Orleans Saints)Jason PinnockCB-NickelPittsburgh
173rd overallGreen Bay PackersCole Van LanenOTWisconsin
174th overallBuffalo BillsForrest MerrillDT-NGArkansas State
175th overallKansas City ChiefsElijah MitchellRBLouisiana Lafayette
176th overallTampa Bay BuccaneersJamie NewmanQBWake Forest
177th overallNew England Patriots (compensatory selection)Quinton BohannaDT-NGKentucky
178th overallGreen Bay Packers (compensatory selection)Austin FaoliuDE-DTOregon
179th overallDallas Cowboys (compensatory selection)Tre BrownCB-NickelOklahoma
180th overallSan Francisco 49ers (compensatory selection)Isaiah McDuffieLBBoston College
181st overallKansas City Chiefs (compensatory selection)Brandon StephensCB-SSMU, UCLA
182nd overallAtlanta Falcons (compensatory selection)Shaka ToneyOLBPenn State
183rd overallAtlanta Falcons (compensatory selection)Patrick JohnsonOLBTulane
184th overallBaltimore Ravens (compensatory selection)Ernest JonesLBSouth Carolina
6th Round
185th overallLos Angeles Chargers (from Jacksonville Jaguars through Tennessee Titans)Evan McPhersonPKFlorida
186th overallNew York JetsTre NixonWRUCF
187th overallAtlanta FalconsTim JonesWRSouthern Miss
188th overallNew England Patriots (from Houston Texans)Jalen CampWRGeorgia Tech
189th overallPhiladelphia EaglesCornell PowellWRClemson
190th overallCincinnati BengalsQuintin MorrisTE/H-backBowling Green
191st overallDenver BroncosJaret PattersonRBBuffalo
192nd overallDallas Cowboys (from Detroit Lions)JaCoby StevensS-LBLSU
193rd overallCarolina PanthersKenny YeboahTE/H-backOle Miss, Temple
194th overallSan Francisco 49ersJaelon DardenAll-PurposeNorth Texas
195th overallHouston Texans (from Dallas Cowboys through New England Patriots)Marlon TuipulotuDT-NGUSC
196th overallNew York GiantsRashad WeaverDE-OLBPittsburgh
197th overallNew England PatriotsJoshua KaindohDEFlorida State
198th overallLos Angeles ChargersTommy DoyleOTMiami (OH.)
199th overallMinnesota VikingsAdrian EalyOTOklahoma
200th overallLas Vegas RaidersWalker LittleOTStanford
201st overallNew York Giants (from Arizona Cardinals)Benjamin St. JusteCBMinnesota, Michigan
202nd overallCincinnati Bengals (from Miami Dolphins through Houston Texans)Larry BoromOT-OGMissouri
203rd overallHouston Texans (from Washington Football Team through Las Vegas Raiders and Miami Dolphins)Marquiss SpencerDE-DTMississippi State
204th overallChicago BearsNate HobbsCBIllinois
205th overallTennessee TitansRichard LeCounte IIISGeorgia
206th overallIndianapolis ColtsAlaric JacksonOTIowa
207th overallKansas City Chiefs (from Pittsburgh Steelers through Miami Dolphins)Josh BallOTMarshall, FSU
208th overallChicago Bears (from Seattle Seahawks through Miami Dolphins; conditional)Mark GilbertCB-NickelDuke
209th overallLos Angeles RamsBrandin “Beezy” EcholsCB-NickelKentucky
210th overallBaltimore RavensTyree GillespieSMissouri
211th overallCleveland BrownsDarius HodgeOLBMarshall
212th overallHouston Texans (from New Orleans Saints)Harry CriderOCIndiana
213th overallBuffalo BillsTommy KraemerOG-OTNotre Dame
214th overallGreen Bay PackersDrue ChrismanPOhio State
215th overallTennessee Titans (from Kansas City Chiefs)Chris EvansRBMichigan
216th overallPittsburgh Steelers (from Tampa Bay Buccaneers)Wyatt HubertDE-OLBKansas State
217th overallTampa Bay Buccaneers (compensatory selection)Malik HerringDE-DTGeorgia
218th overallNew Orleans Saints (compensatory selection)Michael StrachanWR-H-backCharleston (W Va.)
219th overallAtlanta Falcons (compensatory selection)Feleipe FranksQBArkansas, Florida
220th overallGreen Bay Packers (compensatory selection)Shakur BrownCB-NickelMichigan State
221st overallChicago Bears (compensatory selection)Carson GreenOT-OGTexas A&M
222nd overallCarolina Panthers (compensatory selection)Gerrid DoaksRBCincinnati
223rd overallArizona Cardinals (from Minnesota Vikings; compensatory selection)DJ DanielCBGeorgia
224th overallPhiladelphia Eagles (compensatory selection)Jacob HarrisWRUCF, Western Kentucky
225th overallPhiladelphia Eagles (compensatory selection)Keith TaylorCBWashington
226th overallNew York Jets (from Carolina Panthers; compensatory selection)Payton TurnerDE-DTHouston
227th overallDallas Cowboys (compensatory selection)Ian BookQBNotre Dame
228th overallChicago Bears (compensatory selection)Kene NwangwuAll-PurposeIowa State
7th Round
229th overallNew Orleans Saints (from Jacksonville Jaguars)Justin HilliardLBOhio State
230th overallSan Francisco 49ers (from New York Jets)Camryn BynumCB-NickelCalifornia
231st overallMiami Dolphins (from Houston Texans)Darrick ForrestSCincinnati
232nd overallTennessee Titans (from Atlanta Falcons through Miami Dolphins)Damar HamlinSPittsburgh
233rd overallHouston Texans (from Cincinnati Bengals)Dez FitzpatrickWRLouisville
234th overallPhiladelphia EaglesJames SmithPCincinnati
235th overallCincinnati Bengals (from Detroit Lions through Seattle Seahawks)Jonathan AdamsWRArkansas State
236th overallBuffalo Bills (from Carolina Panthers)Chris WilcoxCBBYU
237th overallDenver BroncosRiley ColeLBSouth Alabama
238th overallDallas CowboysJerome JohnsonDT-DEIndiana
239th overallDenver Broncos (from New York Giants)Cameron MurrayDTOklahoma State
240th overallPhiladelphia Eagles (from San Francisco 49ers)Demetric FeltonAll-PurposeUCLA
241st overallLos Angeles ChargersJohn BatesTEBoise State
242nd overallNew England PatriotsBen MasonTE/H-backMichigan
243rd overallArizona CardinalsZach DavidsonTE-PunterCentral Missouri
244th overallWashington Football Team (from Las Vegas Raiders)Jake FunkAll-PurposeMaryland
245th overallPittsburgh Steelers (from Miami Dolphins)Isaiahh LoudermilkDE-DTWisconsin
246th overallWashington Football TeamJon RhattiganLBArmy
247th overallArizona Cardinals (from Chicago Bears through Las Vegas Raiders)Brady BreezeSOregon
248th overallIndianapolis ColtsAr’Darius WashingtonS-NickelTCU
249th overallJacksonville Jaguars (from Tennessee Titans)Roy LopezDT-NGArizona, New Mexico State
250th overallSeattle SeahawksLarnell ColemanOTUMass
251st overallTampa Bay Buccaneers (from Pittsburgh Steelers)Dicaprio BootleS-NickelNebraska
252nd overallLos Angeles RamsAnthony SchwartzAll-PurposeAuburn
253rd overallDenver Broncos (from Cleveland Browns)William ShermanOT-OGColorado
254th overallPittsburgh Steelers (from Baltimore Ravens)Nahshon WrightCBOregon State
255th overallNew Orleans SaintsTory CarterTE/H-backLSU
256th overallGreen Bay PackersRoyce NewmanOG-OTOle Miss
257th overallCleveland Browns (from Buffalo Bills)Alex KessmanPKPittsburgh
258th overallMiami Dolphins (from Kansas City Chiefs)Dai’Jean DixonWRNicholls State
259th overallTampa Bay BuccaneersEthan TuckyOLB-LSCincinnati

Run-of-the-mill? Davis Mills- Stanford QB

15 Davis Mills

6’4 217 QB-Junior

Stanford

Davis Mills could be an intriguing middle round prospect. Can the Stanford Cardinal quarterback be as effective as former greats from Palo Alto like Jim Plunkett and Andrew Luck?

What makes this player NASTY…(Strengths):  Good ball handler.  Smooth, compact delivery. Gets the ball out of his hand quickly on possession routes.  Forgets his mistakes within a game and bounces back (UCLA ’20).  Extends the ball away from his frame on ball fakes.  Exhibits relaxed quiet feet before throwing nine routes outside the numbers with touch.  From under center, he can turn his back to the defense on seven-step drops and fire deep comebacks accurately (3rd QTR/7:23, Northwestern ’19).  Keeps a shoulder-width base and can make these passes on his third hitch in the pocket. Places back-shoulder passes to his No. 2 slot WR (4th QTR, TD, UCLA ’20) or to the X-WR on fades vs. tight man coverage (3rd QTR, Northwestern ’19; OT, UCLA ’20).  Projects with touch throwing the ball in the middle of the field. Capable of making the free rusher miss and then scrambling for yardage (3rd and 10, 3rd QTR, California ’19).  Has good feet speed running to the corner to outrun defenses.  Projects with touch throwing the ball in the middle of the field. Described as “even-keeled” by coaches (https://www.stanforddaily.com/2019/11/14/mills-to-start-against-wazzu-as-injuries-continue-to-plague-cardinal/).  Led a game-winning drive vs. Oregon State in 2020 and also a fourth quarter comeback vs. UCLA in 2020. 

Weaknesses:  He has left some layups on the field (3rd and 5, 2nd QTR/5:01, California ’19).  Some of his double posts to the No. 1 WR don’t get up-and-down in the middle of the field (3rd QTR, Northwestern ’19).  Loses some passes on deep over (Dover) concepts (INT, 3rd QTR/11:08, California ’19).  Locks in on his targets and takes safeties to the ball (INT, 3rd QTR, California ’19).   Fooled by UCLA CB Jay Shaw in a two-deep trap coverage and threw a hitch (five-yard stop) into the trap (INT-TD, 4th QTR, UCLA ’20). Time management is still a work in progress.  Needs more reps. He had two delay of game penalties vs. California in 2019.  Eyes drop in the pocket too soon when reading through coverage (4th QTR, Northwestern ’19).  Knee injuries hampered Mills for most of his first two seasons at Stanford.  Also missed time after suffering an injury against Washington in 2019.  In high school, he did not play in the 2017 U.S. Army All-American game due to injury.

Other Notes:  Attended Greater Atlanta Christian HS (Ga.) and was ranked as the nation’s No. 1 QB ahead of Tua Tagovailloa and Jake Fromm in the 247Sports class of 2017 •  2016 Nike Sparq testing results: 4.32 20-yd SS, 33″ VJ • 2018: Appeared in two games • 2019 (8 gms): Completed 158-of-241 passes (66%) for 1,960 yards, 11 TDs and 5 INTs; 44 yards rushing; TD reception • 327 yards passing (55%), TD vs. Colorado on 11/14/20 • 2020 (5 gms): Completed 129-of-195 passes (66.2%) for 1,508 yards, 7 TDs and 3 INTs • Career Stats: Passed for 3,468 yards (65.5%), 18 TDs, 8 INTs; 86 yards rushing, 3 TDs • Stanford Pro Day: 9 1/2″ hands, 31 3/8″ arms, 77 3/4″ wingspan, 4.78 40-yd, 32″ VJ, 9’2″ BJ, 6.95 3-cone, 4.4 20-yd SS

Time to get NASTY (Our Summary):  There was a reason that former Stanford quarterback K.J. Costello left the Cardinal program for Mississippi State.  Some people may point to injury, but in reality it was due to the emergence of Mills.  After Costello’s injury in 2019, Mills could not truly grab the job and he himself went down to injury.  The 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.

Grade                                       5.75 (3rd Round)

DN Big Board Rank:     168


FIU OL Shane McGough: Centered in his approach

Former FIU center Shane McGough traveled from Tampa’s Gaither High School down the road to Miami, Florida following in the footsteps of his brother Alex, currently a quarterback for the Seattle Seahawks. McGough learned some tips from his brother, quarterbacked the Panthers offensive line and found time to start at all three interior line positions in school. We sat down with McGough this offseason to talk about some of his goals as he embarks on a potential NFL career.

DN: In terms of the workout process for the draft, where are you training for the draft?

McGough: I’m actually in my hometown of Tampa, Florida training with The Trench Academy, trying to get all these times ready for Pro Day. And I think it’s going really well.

DN: What are some of your goals, ‘let’s just say it might be the 20-yard short shuttle or maybe the 3-cone or maybe the bench press?’ Any specific goals that you’ve earmarked with your trainer?

McGough: Yeah, we’ve all got some times that we’re really trying to hit. In my short shuttle, I put down a time the other day that I’m really trying to stay around. I ran a 4.56 in the short shuttle (did 4.58 on Pro Day), so that’s pretty fast for an offensive lineman. So if I can keep it right there, then that’s a good number. The 10-yard split is really important for an offensive lineman, showing explosiveness off the line. If I can keep that under a 1.7, that’s what we’re shooting for (On McGough’s Pro Day in late March, he ran in the 5.1-to-5.2 range in the 40-yard dash).

DN: You were at the College Gridiron Showcase and also at the Tropical Bowl. You weighed in at 304 pounds right at 6-foot-2, and you pretty good hand size at 9 3/8”. Those measurements are favorable for you, projecting to the center spot, correct?

McGough: Yes sir.

DN: Who were some of the guys that were there before you (at FIU) that kind of paved the way for you?

McGough: Neal (Mars) was a guy that I played under, as I was his backup. He was always there to teach me and we competed for the spot. Having a guy like that who was willing to help you and show you the ropes, knowing that I was competing against him was really good. Jordan Budwig was an older guy that was actually there when my brother was there. Missed a couple of years due to injury but him being an older guy and having a lot of experience; he was able to teach me the game as a younger player. Understanding different defenses and being able to pick things up.

DN: Rich Skrosky (offensive coordinator) kind of brought NFL-type principles to the program. In terms of line calls, talk about how being in somewhat of a pro-style scheme the last couple of years can help your progression.

McGough: It helps a lot with the way we did our stuff with Skrosky. In the NFL, a lot of it is put on the center to make a lot of those calls, protection calls and stuff like that. That’s exactly how we did it. We did get help from the quarterback but they did rely on the center a lot to make adjustments right there on the line. Tell the quarterback what you see and let him change it. Make sure everyone is on the same page. Skrosky always said, ‘As long as all five of us are wrong together, you’re still right.’ Being able to be in the middle as the quarterback of the offenslve line, make all the line calls, get the protection, get the slide where we need to be and pick up all the different blitzes is really going to show out on my film. Maybe some of those NFL scouts that are looking for those centers who are able to slide over, pass off twists and pass all the way off to an edge blitzer.

DN: We regarded you as the best bender on your offensive line in some of the matchups viewed. Talk about the guys that you went against from Western Kentucky, as that was a multiple defensive front. How did that contest challenge you intellectually?

McGough: Their defensive line was an experienced defensive line, they had a lot of older guys. Their nose guard and shades that I was going against I had played multiple times. We’ve seen each other, kind of got a few tricks under our sleeves. They ran a few different formations and just competing against those guys was fun. It gets boring if you’re not playing against good competition.

DN: You used some different techniques after you’ve snapped the ball. You used some of these against FAU, the game in which you guided and mirrored their nose guard on the inside zone touchdown. Talk a little about some of your run blocking techniques, particularly when you wall-and-steer defenders to turn them out.

McGough: It’s something that you kind of read the defender on that, depending on how he plays the flow in the backfield. It kind of changes how you react to what he does. On a lot of the ones you’re talking about when I’m walling off and mirroring him, he’s not really giving me a defined read I’m just trying to stay in front of them. And don’t let the running back see color (defender), because if he sees color he’s gotta cutback. You’re not making the decision for the running back. When I tear him over, ‘you called it a hip toss,’ it’s a lot of times on an A-gap zone where they’re coming right off my butt. And being able to tear them (DL) past the read spot of the ball opens up that lane. It’s usually when I feel the defender going that way, I just use his momentum against him and take him where he wants to go and run him past the ball.

DN: You started nine games at guard in 2018 (right guard) and started three games at guard (left) in 2019. The ability to play all three interior line positions after measuring in at 6’2, 304. You put NFL offensive line coaches in a better spot there, right?

McGough: Yeah, that’s one thing that’s super important. Especially nowadays in the NFL is being able to swing. All it does is put more stuff on your resume’. You can’t really say I only play one position unless you’re that veteran in the league. A rookie coming in you’ve got to have multiple positional abilities. I can say I only play center but there’s a guy behind me who plays right guard but also plays center. Well that opens up another spot on the roster if I’m not on it.

DN: The toughest opponent you went against in school?

McGough: I’d have to say the University of Miami (Fla.).

DN: Best football player you’ve played with?

McGough: Laughs..

DN: Come on Shane we’ve got to give you some tough questions…

McGough: It’s probably messed up if I didn’t say it was my brother (Alex).

DN: What’s the best thing you learned from him?

McGough: He’s shown me a lot about defenses. How to pick up or read if its four-down, three-down (defensive fronts). In high school, that was a little complicated to me.

DN: The number one center you’ve studied in the NFL.

McGough: I’ve watched a lot of Jason Kelce (Eagles) film. Cause he’s kind of got the same measurables as I do.

DN: What about A.Q. Shipley?

McGough: Yeah, I’ve watched him. We talk about him a lot with my agent and trainer. He’s another guy whose kind of got the same measurables. It’s always good to watch a guy tat’s similar to you because he uses similar technique you need to use to do your job effectively.

DN: Your number one goal a year from now, what would it be?

McGough: Just to get an opportunity to play. That’s all I can ask for. You want to shoot high but at the end of the day it only takes one team to take a chance on you, whether that’s getting drafted, getting an invite or signing free agency. Just to be on a team and getting the opportunity to play again.

DN: Really enjoyed getting a chance to catch up with you.

McGough: Absolutely. Appreciate it.

DN: Have a safe rest of the year and good luck in the 2021 NFL Draft.

McGough: Thanks, you too.

Avery Williams: Walking on to the Blue Turf

Boise State return man Avery Williams went from a walk-on to an indispensable force for the Broncos. In 2019, he was voted the Mountain West Conference’s Special Teams Player of the Year, which shouldn’t have come as a surprise after notching weekly honors five times during his career. He also set the NCAA all-time record for punt and kickoff return touchdowns (nine).

Williams averaged 11.6 yards per punt return and 27.4 yards per kick return in his career.

But that’s not all…

Williams can make plays at cornerback. For his career, he had 152 tackles, 4.5 tackles for loss, five forced fumbles, one fumble recovery, four interceptions and 22 pass breakups. At cornerback, he is quick-footed and can mirror opposing receivers. How does he do it as a return man? The Pasadena, California native possesses the ability to dart, slide and break tackles on a regular basis. The former high school running back impresses on film with his balance.

For a full scouting report on Williams, purchase Corey Chavous’ 2021 NFL Draft Guide this spring.