1st Round NFL Mock Draft

The first wave of the NFL free agency period has come and gone seemingly overnight.

So far, the Bengals have taken a vastly different approach than I imagined they would. A few weeks ago, I wrote that the Bengals number one approach should be to make Joe Burrow’s life easier. Instead, they seem to be more focused on fielding an improved defense in 2021. It’s still really early in the offseason and the NFL Draft will be here before we know it.

Given the results of free agency so far, I made a full first round mock draft and attempted to land a high impact player for the offense. Without further ado, let’s get into it!

1. Jacksonville Jaguars – Trevor Lawrence, QB, Clemson

This is a no-brainer. Urban Meyer has come to Jacksonville and filled out a pretty nice roster to welcome the top QB in the draft with open arms.

2. New York Jets – Zach Wilson, QB, BYU

Speculation that the Jets may stick with Sam Darnold lasts all the way up until the Jets’ pick, but they ultimately go with the guy some are comparing to Patrick Mahomes when it comes to style of play.

3. Miami Dolphins – Ja’Marr Chase, WR, LSU

Miami gives Tua Tagovailoa a legit weapon on the outside and they keep him away from his college QB who is rumored to want him in Cincinnati.

4. Denver Broncos (TRADE) – Trey Lance, QB, NDSU

Lance and Denver just seem like peanut butter and jelly, so they trade up with Atlanta to secure him.

5. Cincinnati Bengals – Penei Sewell, T, Oregon

Bengals fans rejoice! Their heavy approach to defense in free agency triggers a 2020 Carolina Panthers-like approach to the 2021 draft when they took only defense, except the Bengals go with offense.

6. Philadelphia Eagles – Patrick Surtain II, CB, Alabama

The Eagles secondary has been a mess for some time now, and with Surtain running a 4.2 40 yard dash at his Pro Day, he proved he’s worthy of a top 10 pick.

7. Detroit Lions – Jaylen Waddle, WR, Alabama

Can you, or perhaps anyone, name a wide receiver for Detroit right now? Neither can I.

8. Carolina Panthers – Justin Fields, QB, OSU

Matt Rhule stays put at 8 and gets a guy he thought about trading up for.

9. Atlanta Falcons (TRADE) – Kyle Pitts, TE, Florida

The Falcons trade back to 9th and still add arguably the most gifted playmaker in the draft.

10. Dallas Cowboys – Caleb Farley, CB, Virginia Tech

Even a pre-draft back surgery doesn’t stop Dallas from taking the potential superstar in Farley.

11. New York Giants – Micah Parsons, LB, PSU

Parsons is a freak, and he just ran a 4.39 40 at his Pro Day. He fills a need for NYG and potentially makes them one of the top defenses in the league.

12. San Francisco 49ers – Jaycee Horn, CB, South Carolina

Freak athlete who even had success against Kyle Pitts revamps the SF defense.

13. Los Angeles Chargers – Rashawn Slater, T, NW

Some speculate Slater might need to be a guard at the next level, but the Chargers can ease him in anywhere after a free agency dedicated towards protecting Justin Herbert.

14. Minnesota Vikings – Christian Darrisaw, T, Virginia Tech

Darrisaw could excel in Minnesota as a run blocker and not have too much trouble pass blocking in their play-action heavy offense.

15. New England Patriots – Mac Jones, QB, Alabama

They brought Cam Newton back for a year, but Mac Jones could provide a long term starter.

16. Arizona Cardinals – DeVonta Smith, WR, Alabama

The 4th Alabama player off the board is the reigning Heisman winner. His small frame causes his fall, but Arizona isn’t complaining.

17. Las Vegas Raiders – Kwity Paye, EDGE, Michigan

The best edge rusher in the draft at 17? Sign everyone up, including Jon Gruden.

18. Miami Dolphins – Jeremiah Owosu-Koramoah, LB, ND

They’ve been linked to linebackers for awhile now, and JOK is one of the most complete LB prospects you’ll see.

19. Washington Football Team – Teven Jenkins, T, Oklahoma State

With questions on the left side of the line, Jenkins fills an immediate hole. At guard or tackle.

20. Chicago Bears – Rashod Bateman, WR, Minnesota

The grossly underrated WR is paired with Allen Robinson and gives Andy Dalton some options.

21. Indianapolis Colts – Alijah Vera-Tucker, T, USC

The dude has Colts written all over him. He’s nasty, powerful and versatile.

22. Tennessee Titans – Christian Barmore, DT, Alabama

Tennessee might want to add a disruptor on the defensive line. Barmore is just that.

23. New York Jets – Gregory Rousseau, EDGE, Miami

Rousseau can take his freakish skillset to New York and learn under Robert Saleh opposite Carl Lawson.

24. Pittsburgh Steelers – Asante Samuel Jr., CB, FSU

No! One of my favorite prospects reloads Pittsburgh’s secondary who just lost Mike Hilton and Steven Nelson.

25. Jacksonville Jaguars – Trevon Moehrig, S, TCU

The cornerback room in Jacksonville is actually good again, they just need some help over the top.

26. Cleveland Browns – Jayson Oweh, EDGE, PSU

Oweh has all the tools to be a perennial Pro Bowler, but the production is lacking. Maybe it shows up playing next to Myles Garrett. Oh, and he ran a 4.36 40 yard dash…

27. Baltimore Ravens – Elijah Moore, WR, Ole Miss

Moore shouldn’t even make it this far in the draft, but the run on OL and CB helps Baltimore land an elite playmaker.

28. New Orleans Saints – Nick Bolton, LB, Missouri

The Saints linebackers are getting old and slow fast and Bolton alleviates that problem.

29. Green Bay Packers – Rondale Moore, WR, Purdue

Finally! Aaron Rodgers gets a toy in the first round, and Moore takes some attention away from Davante Adams.

30. Buffalo Bills – Azeez Olujari, EDGE, Georgia

The Bills uncharacteristically struggled in the defensive trenches last season. Some are high on Olujari, but I don’t see him going much higher than this considering the top end talent in this draft.

31. Kansas City Chiefs – Dillon Radunz, T, NDSU

KC saw what it was like to have a bad offensive line in the Super Bowl. The revamp is underway and Radunz can play guard or tackle for them.

32. Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Travis Etienne, RB, Clemson

The Bucs have the luxury of spending a first rounder on a running back. So why not use it on a special one like Etienne?

Logan Vaughn

I write about Cincinnati sports in my free time.

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