Times are changing in Atlanta, and there's no telling who'll be calling the shots for the Falcons in 2021. But whoever that is, he'll need to bolster the team's pass-rushing unit that's been a problem for years. And there just so happens to be a towering, athletic defensive lineman who'll likely be available when the Falcons go on the clock in next year's draft.
And after watching Monday Night Football in Week 5, it's obvious the Chargers must place the highest priority on protecting their first-round pick Justin Herbert. Because if they do so, they might have an elite quarterback on their hands.
The draft order below was determined using SportsLine's reverse Super Bowl odds following Sunday's Week 5 action.
Round 1 - Pick 2
Penei Sewell OL
Oregon • Jr • 6'6" / 330 lbs
Andrew Thomas has had a nightmarish start to his NFL career. Let's not call him a bust yet though. He needs to get stronger. But with Sewell on the board, I don't think Giants management would be against flipping Thomas to right tackle in 2021.
Round 1 - Pick 3
Ohio State • Jr • 6'3" / 228 lbs
Dwayne Haskins went from 300-yard performance to third string, and there's even some thought he'll get traded before the deadline. Things have escalated quickly in Washington. Ron Rivera will get an opportunity to pick his quarterback of the future, and Fields is the most gifted quarterback in this class after Lawrence.
Round 1 - Pick 5
Wyatt Davis OL
Ohio State • Soph • 6'4" / 313 lbs
Giving Joe Burrow opportunity to actually scan the field for more than a second before pressure mounts would be a good idea for the Bengals. Davis is the consensus top guard in the country.
Round 1 - Pick 7
Penn State • Jr • 6'3" / 244 lbs
This pick just seems right, as we've seen the Dolphins are becoming a team on the rise offensively. It's their defense that probably needs more talent before they can become a contender. Parsons is on the odds-on favorite to be the first linebacker off the board.
Round 1 - Pick 8
From Houston Texans
Round 1 - Pick 9
Round 1 - Pick 10
Minnesota • Soph • 6'2" / 210 lbs
Given Matt Patricia's tenuous grasp on the head coaching job in Detroit, it's difficult to pinpoint what the Lions will do in the first round in 2021. But their receiver position could be in the state of flux with most of their rostered pass catchers set to hit free agency.
Round 1 - Pick 11
Northwestern • Jr • 6'3" / 305 lbs
It looks like the Chargers might have drafted a dandy in Justin Herbert. The offensive line, while banged up right now, is still not good. Slater is a technically proficient pass-blocking specialist.
Round 1 - Pick 13
Alabama • Sr • 6'6" / 312 lbs
The positional value is just too good to pass up here for Carolina, one of the league's most surprising clubs through five weeks. Leatherwood's play has been squeaky clean this season at left tackle.
Round 1 - Pick 14
What better situation for Lance to fall into than running Kyle Shanahan's play-action, YAC-predicated, QB-friendly offense?
Round 1 - Pick 15
Round 1 - Pick 17
Trey Smith OL
Tennessee • Sr • 6'6" / 330 lbs
The Cowboys are immensely banged up on the offensive line, but this pick isn't made simply with that in mind. It's just that Smith is an NFL-ready interior blocker, and Dallas' once-vaunted front needs more talent at guard.
Round 1 - Pick 19
Washington • Jr • 6'3" / 293 lbs
Arizona has to get sturdier on the defensive line and create more push -- it can't be the Chandler Jones show forever. Onwuzurike can thrive in three-man fronts and disrupt from any position.
Round 1 - Pick 20
Dylan Moses LB
Alabama • Sr • 6'3" / 240 lbs
The Browns have a weak spot at linebacker, although Mack Wilson has given solid dividends early in his career. Moses has range, can shed blocks, and is capable in coverage but at his best flying downhill.
Round 1 - Pick 22
Miami (FL) • Jr • 6'3" / 245 lbs
Jordan looks like another first-round caliber tight end with serious receiving ability. If Cam Newton is to be the long-term quarterback in New England, the Patriots will want to invest in a pure pass-catching tight end. That's Jordan.
Round 1 - Pick 23
From Los Angeles Rams
Round 1 - Pick 24
Clemson • Jr • 6'5" / 335 lbs
Carman is a mammoth left tackle with noticeably balanced style of play. The Jaguars have to fortify the offensive line for Gardner Minshew or whoever is taking snaps in Jacksonville next year.