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The 2021 NFL Draft is still way off in the distance and no one should be handcuffing themselves to one way of thinking. Free agency has yet to happen. Off-season trades have yet to occur. There are several extenuating circumstances that could impact the first round. In an effort to provide a fresh perspective, I have provided some new names and scenarios in this week's mock draft.

Without further ado, let's kick this off! 

NFL Mock Draft
Round 1
Round 1 - Pick 1
Clemson • 6'6" / 220 lbs
Projected Team
N.Y. Jets
PROSPECT RNK
1st
POSITION RNK
1st
Trevor Lawrence is going to be the No. 1 overall pick and, right now, the Jets own the rights to that selection. The bigger mystery is where Sam Darnold is traded in a few months.
Round 1 - Pick 2
Ohio State • 6'3" / 227 lbs
Projected Team
Jacksonville
PROSPECT RNK
5th
POSITION RNK
2nd
If the draft order remains the same, Jacksonville will likely be faced with a decision between Justin Fields and Zach Wilson. I do not think anyone could go wrong picking either right now.
Round 1 - Pick 3
Oregon • 6'5" / 331 lbs
Projected Team
Cincinnati
PROSPECT RNK
2nd
POSITION RNK
1st
Cincinnati needs offensive linemen. Period. It might be tantalizing to draft Ja'Marr Chase and pair him with his former quarterback but, in that event, the Bengals better be prepared to move back into the first round to select a talented offensive lineman. Offensive line has to be their top priority to protect Joe Burrow.
Round 1 - Pick 4
Virginia Tech • 6'2" / 197 lbs
Projected Team
L.A. Chargers
PROSPECT RNK
11th
POSITION RNK
1st
Los Angeles is a strong trade down candidate as currently constructed. Full disclosure, I do not think there are more than a few elite talents in this draft class outside of the quarterback position and the best players on the board don't stack up with L.A.'s needs. Chargers fans weren't happy when I tried to give them Ja'Marr Chase for that reason. As it was explained to me, they would rather have a lesser talent.
Round 1 - Pick 5
Florida • 6'6" / 245 lbs
Projected Team
Dallas
PROSPECT RNK
10th
POSITION RNK
1st
Dallas needs defense, that is clear. Their defense has been a major issue and likely an embarrassment to Jerry Jones. With that being said, it is not difficult to imagine Jones going all in on the offense and adding Pitts to the equation. In that scenario, they could explore a trade of Amari Cooper as well.
Round 1 - Pick 6
LSU • 6'0" / 201 lbs
Projected Team
Philadelphia
PROSPECT RNK
6th
POSITION RNK
1st
Philadelphia can not get out of their own way. For some reason, they force feed reps down Alshon Jeffery and DeSean Jackson's throats rather than admitting Travis Fulgham and Greg Ward are simply better options for them right now. Wide receiver remains a need and Chase would help the cause.
Round 1 - Pick 7
BYU • 6'2" / 214 lbs
Projected Team
Carolina
PROSPECT RNK
14th
POSITION RNK
4th
Carolina could envision Teddy Bridgewater as their quarterback for a decade. They could also see him as a bridge to a potential franchise signal caller. Zach Wilson's development would be fun to watch with Joe Brady.
Round 1 - Pick 8
Michigan • 6'3" / 265 lbs
Projected Team
Atlanta
PROSPECT RNK
7th
POSITION RNK
1st
Atlanta has been able to manufacture pressure with discount brand names. By elevating the talent level, the Falcons could have a more stable pass rush situation moving forward.
Round 1 - Pick 9
Penn State • 6'3" / 248 lbs
Projected Team
Miami
PROSPECT RNK
4th
POSITION RNK
2nd
Micah Parsons is a really gifted athlete that would add a new element to Brian Flores' defense. Miami has a lot of youth, has been getting contributions from unlikely sources and, to Flores' credit, still managed to exceed expectations.
Round 1 - Pick 10
Northwestern • 6'4" / 315 lbs
Projected Team
Denver
PROSPECT RNK
16th
POSITION RNK
2nd
Rashawn Slater could essentially play any position along the starting offensive line. He could be the replacement for Ja'Wuan James at right tackle or slide inside to fulfill one of the two starting guard roles. I happen to like Lloyd Cushenberry at center.
Round 1 - Pick 11
NFL Draft • 6'4" / 226 lbs
Projected Team
Detroit
PROSPECT RNK
12th
POSITION RNK
3rd
Detroit could move on from Matthew Stafford after 2020 but it would be completely reasonable to retain him for one more year and allow Trey Lance to develop at his own pace. The Lions have already made the decision to change coaches and new coaches often want a clean slate, their own players. Stafford may not want to go through another rebuild this late in his career.
Round 1 - Pick 12
Alabama • 6'2" / 202 lbs
Projected Team
Washington
PROSPECT RNK
13th
POSITION RNK
2nd
Washington has elite talent along the defensive line but they are deficient in the secondary. The sea level needs to rise to maximize success on that side of the ball. With such a dynamic, imposing front, Ron Rivera's team has the capability to create turnovers. If they add talent to the back end, those turnovers will come to fruition.
Round 1 - Pick 13
USC • 6'5" / 308 lbs
Projected Team
Chicago
PROSPECT RNK
17th
POSITION RNK
3rd
Alijah Vera-Tucker has shown his versatility by playing left tackle this season. In all likelihood, the Bears would ask him to move back inside to a more natural role. Chicago has been weak at the point of attack and the addition of Vera-Tucker gives them an identity that they have lacked in the post-Kyle Long era.
Round 1 - Pick 14
Ohio State • 6'4" / 315 lbs
Projected Team
San Francisco
PROSPECT RNK
18th
POSITION RNK
4th
San Francisco has dealt with a lot of injuries this season and some of that has occurred along the offensive line. Mike McGlinchey has not played up to his usual level either. The 49ers are grounded in the run game and it is imperative that they fix their issues up front.
Round 1 - Pick 15
Clemson • Sr • 6'0" / 190 lbs
Projected Team
Arizona
PROSPECT RNK
64th
POSITION RNK
7th
Arizona has a few directions in which they could go and one of those is cornerback. Patrick Peterson is one of the oldest players on Arizona's roster and the opportunity to shed some salary cap space might be appealing. Derion Kendrick could step in opposite Byron Murphy and solidify the back end of the defense.
Round 1 - Pick 16
South Carolina • 6'1" / 200 lbs
Projected Team
New England
PROSPECT RNK
50th
POSITION RNK
8th
It sounds as though Stephon Gilmore is not long for New England. If they move on from him, it creates a void on defense. The law firm of Jaycee and J.C. would give Bill Belichick two physical players in the secondary along with several players returning after opting out of the current season.
Round 1 - Pick 17
Washington • 6'3" / 295 lbs
Projected Team
Las Vegas
PROSPECT RNK
24th
POSITION RNK
2nd
Las Vegas addressed their linebacker and wide receiver units in the offseason. The offensive line has risen to the challenge so, unless Mike Mayock wants to dump salary cap, there is no reason to make changes. Defensive tackle is one area that stands out as a potential weakness for the AFC West franchise moving forward.
Round 1 - Pick 18
Alabama • 6'0" / 170 lbs
Projected Team
Baltimore
PROSPECT RNK
8th
POSITION RNK
2nd
From a scouting standpoint, evaluators might struggle to get over Devonta Smith's thin frame. However, there are players that simply produce regardless of the environment; Smith has been one of those players. His time at Alabama has been historic and the time, effort he dedicates to his craft separates him from other prospects. He already carries himself as a professional.
Round 1 - Pick 19
Miami (FL) • 6'6" / 266 lbs
Projected Team
N.Y. Giants
PROSPECT RNK
15th
POSITION RNK
1st
The Giants have a defensive tackle rotation that works for them. The issue is a lack of pass rush. If they can supplement the edge rush, it will only make that interior group even more effective. Gregory Rousseau is operating in the shadows now. Since opting out prior to the season, his development has gone sight unseen. The training reports will be important to determine how much he has improved and similarly where he will be drafted.
Round 1 - Pick 20
Virginia Tech • 6'5" / 315 lbs
Projected Team
Minnesota
PROSPECT RNK
19th
POSITION RNK
5th
Minnesota lives and dies with the run game despite the standout play of Justin Jefferson and Adam Thielen. For that to continue and potentially grow, the offensive line needs some attention. Christian Darrisaw is a calm, controlled lineman and the moment will never be too big for him.
Round 1 - Pick 21
NFL Draft • 6'8" / 311 lbs
Projected Team
Tampa Bay
PROSPECT RNK
143rd
POSITION RNK
25th
The Spencer Brown to Tampa Bay projection is exactly that -- a projection. Brown has tremendous athleticism and could be the Buccaneers' best chance to find a franchise left tackle at this stage of the first round. If left tackle does not work out, perhaps they consider moving the stalwart Tristan Wirfs over to the left side. Brown has been training with former 49ers left tackle Joe Staley.
Round 1 - Pick 22
Alabama • 5'10" / 182 lbs
Projected Team
Miami
PROSPECT RNK
9th
POSITION RNK
3rd
Tua Tagovailoa gets matched up with his former wide receiver. Jaylen Waddle has elite speed and is capable of spreading the field. Miami has talent at the wide receiver position but injuries have led to inconsistency.
Round 1 - Pick 23
Texas • 6'4" / 253 lbs
Projected Team
Indianapolis
PROSPECT RNK
30th
POSITION RNK
4th
Joseph Ossai has been a consistent projection for Indianapolis because Justin Houston is long in the tooth. There are very few players that have been as productive as Houston over the past decade. Ossai is relatively new in his current role but he has taken to it like a duck in water.
Round 1 - Pick 24
Ohio State • Sr • 6'1" / 188 lbs
Projected Team
Jacksonville
PROSPECT RNK
45th
POSITION RNK
6th
Jacksonville selected Justin Fields with its first selection and got him a housewarming present -- another Buckeye. Chris Olave is a great route-runner and that has translated to immediate success in recent years.
Round 1 - Pick 25
Penn State • 6'5" / 251 lbs
Projected Team
N.Y. Jets
PROSPECT RNK
73rd
POSITION RNK
7th
Jets GM Joe Douglas comes from Philadelphia and the Howie Roseman executive tree. Roseman believes in a strong pass rush and bulletproof protection. Douglas used his first pick to add Mekhi Becton last year and now motions to add pass rush aid. Jayson Oweh is still a ball of clay but few possess his potential.
Round 1 - Pick 26
Oregon State • 6'2" / 251 lbs
Projected Team
Tennessee
PROSPECT RNK
47th
POSITION RNK
4th
Tennessee applied zero pressure to Baker Mayfield last weekend and he carved up their secondary. If the Titans do not find a way to produce a pass rush, the same will happen to them in 2021. They have zero chance of winning the Super Bowl with such a critical deficiency.
Round 1 - Pick 27
Notre Dame • 6'4" / 268 lbs
Projected Team
Cleveland
PROSPECT RNK
65th
POSITION RNK
6th
Adetokunbo Ogundeji is a relatively new name to the first round and many might not agree. He is an insatiable worker that has a similar physical style to Cam Jordan but in a smaller frame. Cleveland needs a reliable pass rusher to pair with Myles Garrett. Perhaps, Ogundeji is that player.
Round 1 - Pick 28
Tulsa • 6'4" / 260 lbs
Projected Team
Buffalo
PROSPECT RNK
28th
POSITION RNK
3rd
The linebacker position is not a new projection for Buffalo but Zaven Collins is new to my first round. I have not bitten hook, line and sinker the way others have but there is no doubt Collins is a gifted talent. Few have improved as significantly as the Tulsa product has over the past year.
Round 1 - Pick 29
Notre Dame • 6'2" / 221 lbs
Projected Team
Green Bay
PROSPECT RNK
43rd
POSITION RNK
7th
Jeremiah Owusu-Koromoah is closer to a safety than an off-ball linebacker. He has a thin frame and shows strength in coverage. Green Bay could also take a shot at wide receiver or edge rusher.
Round 1 - Pick 30
Clemson • 5'10" / 215 lbs
Projected Team
Pittsburgh
PROSPECT RNK
23rd
POSITION RNK
1st
Pittsburgh does not have a ton of needs at this time. They could look to replace some of the aging veterans on defense. Bud Dupree is scheduled to be a free agent once again. Let's say the Steelers return everyone and are looking to make a Super Bowl run. Travis Etienne would be a really fun addition to the offense. James Conner and Benny Snell are not burners so the Clemson product would give them a little more explosiveness on that side of the ball.
Round 1 - Pick 31
Penn State • 6'5" / 258 lbs
Projected Team
New Orleans
PROSPECT RNK
25th
POSITION RNK
2nd
New Orleans will be forced to make a lot of changes this offseason. The replacement of Jared Cook (he's a free agent, but presumably the Saints would not be re-signing him to another deal upwards of $7 million) with Pat Freiermuth would allow them to save salary cap space. The presumable loss of Drew Brees would also save them a lot of money.
Round 1 - Pick 32
Ohio State • 6'1" / 191 lbs
Projected Team
Kansas City
PROSPECT RNK
42nd
POSITION RNK
3rd
DeAndre Baker is the wild card with this selection. Rookie cornerback L'Jarius Sneed looks like he is going to develop into a solid player so, if Baker gets his life in order and lives up to expectations, cornerback will not be an early need for the defending Super Bowl champions.