TOP 15 MOCK DRAFT & FANTASY IMPLICATIONS
#1 - Jaguars: Trevor Lawrence (QB) - Clemson
Fantasy Outlook: Not only is T-Law (as he should be nicknamed) the top prospect of this draft and the top prospect since Andrew Luck, he’s also entering an ideal situation when it comes to fantasy. Think 2020 Joe Burrow. Joey B threw 35+ times 8 times in 10 games played. Tua did that 3 times in 10 games played. The Jags defense has a long way to go to be average, so Urban is going to need T-Law to throw a lot. Expect the #1 pick to throw 35-50 times a game to his young weapons, and as we know in fantasy: Usage is key. His TD's should be there too with 9 games against teams with sub-par secondaries and his running abilities.
#2 - Jets: Trade Pick to Panthers, Carolina Selects Justin Fields (QB) - Ohio State
According to my nonexistent sources, the Jets have been fielding calls on Sam Darnold and the #2 pick since Robert Saleh was hired. They finally determine the #2 pick brings them the greater return. Carolina also gets desperate because they miss out on earlier trades and the FA QB they (may) want, so they trade up to get a franchise QB to solidify Rhule’s Reign and get the most out of the CMC window.
Fantasy Outlook: Nothing to get too excited about just yet. There will be a QB battle in year one with Teddy Bridgewater there. Plus, Joe Brady has an entire playbook full of Christian McCaffrey plays that he couldn’t use last year, so he’ll want to get them going. Fields should be on the Super-Flex league radar though because his time could come sooner than later.
#3 - Dolphins: Ja’Marr Chase (WR) - LSU
Tua needs weapons and a weapon to grow with him. Devonte Smith is super talented and I’d love a ‘Roll Tide Reunion,’ but he’s not the outside threat the Fins need. Devonte Parker is going into his 7th season and can mentor Chase like a ‘Julio Jones - Calvin Ridley’ type situation. Preston Williams becomes a restricted free agent in 2022 and in the last two seasons he's only appeared in 16 games. The Dolphins need a man on the outside to go along with Parker, or slide into the slot when Williams is healthy.
Fantasy Outlook: This really depends on Tua. The Dolphins have said he's their guy, so for now let's go with that. The Dolphins defense is for real. They gave up the 6th fewest points in the league last season, so expect the Dolphins' offense to prioritize the run. They won't often find themselves in garbage-time. Keep Chase on your waiver-wire radar.
#4 - Falcons: Zach Wilson (QB) - BYU
This is an ideal situation for Wilson. He’s just not totally there yet to start Year 1, so now he gets a chance to sit under Matty Ice for a year and go from there. Who knows? Maybe Ryan gets Rodgers Rage and gets into the MVP conversation during 2021.
Fantasy Outlook: Check back in 2022
#5 - Bengals: Penei Sewell (OT) - Oregon
Fantasy Outlook: Joey B gets protection!
#6 - Eagles: Devonte Smith (WR) - Alabama
If we thought the Eagles’ WR situation was bad going into last year, it may be even worse now. The whole organization is worse now. They need help everywhere, but Smith offers a high floor as a rookie and a big name to rally the fanbase.
Fantasy Outlook: Philly needs a lot of work & it’s hard to trust the QB situation there. When Carson Wentz played he had the 2nd worst completion percentage at 57.4%, and Jalen Hurts was FIVE points behind that at 52%. Right now, I wouldn’t draft Smith unless it’s a late-round pick in a 14-team league, you're 4 beers deep, and you're a massive Alabama fan. He’s an unbelievable WR, and his time will come. Just not right now.
#7 - Lions: Jaylen Waddle (WR) - Alabama
Detroit needs a WR. Literally. Kenny Galloday, Marvin Jones Jr., Danny Amendola are all unrestricted free agents and on their way out. That leaves Jared Goff with TJ Hockenson and Quintez Cephus. Yup. It's bad. But there is hope in Waddle!
Fantasy Outlook: Keep him on your radar. Detroit will be interesting to watch because Goff is going to play mad, so his targets could have some value. Look to draft him late in 12/14 team leagues & keep him on the bench for the first few weeks. We should have an idea of his usage by week 4/5.
#8 - Jets via Panthers: Rashawn Slater (OT) - Northwestern
Fantasy Outlook: Darnold gets protection & so does Travis Etienne (who the Jets will pick later in the 1st round).
#9 - Broncos: Patrick Surtain Jr. (DB) - Alabama
Fantasy Outlook: IDP enthusiasts take notice! In a division that slings it Surtain will have a lot of opportunities to collect some INT’s.
#10 - Cowboys: Trade Pick to 49ers, SF Selects Trey Lance (QB) - North Dakota State
The Jimmy G era will have one more year, but I think the team’s patience is wearing thin. So now is the time to grab his replacement & the future franchise QB.
Fantasy Outlook: Check back in 2022 (unless Jimmy gets injured; then we’ll write an entire article on Lance’s value because Shanahan is going to make some magic with Lance).
#11 - Giants: Rashod Bateman (WR) - Minnesota
I love love love this pick. This is the one that gets me most anxious for fantasy, so let’s get to the outlook ASAP...
Fantasy Outlook: The Giants had a rough season & Danny Dimes was dropping pennies for way too many weeks (2 passing TD's in the first 5 weeks). But things get back on track in 2021. Saquon Barkley comes back healthy & Sterling Shepherd owns the slot, which will open opportunities for Bateman. He’s got size & speed and will go opposite of Darius Slayton. Golden Tate is going into his 13th season so I don't expect much from him. Look to draft Bateman in the later rounds of a 12/14 team league. But keep a close eye on him because he has the potential and opportunities to be the top rookie WR of 2021.
#12 - Cowboys via SF: Caleb Farley (CB) - Virginia Tech
‘America’s Team’ needs to become a complete team, so they get some much needed help in the secondary. Stat Drop: Dallas gave up the 3rd most passing TD's last season.
#13 - Chargers: Trade Pick to Washington, WFT Selects Mac Jones (QB) - Alabama
WFT falls into the same problem as the Panthers. They miss out on earlier trades & don’t get the FA they wanted. Mac Jones shows the maturity to start Year 1 & has the ideal skill set to run the type of offense Ron Rivera wants to run.
Fantasy Outlook: Jones won’t need to rush to start week 1 with so many (possibly) in front of him with Alex Smith, Kyle Allen & ‘His Name is Heinicki.’ So this is a perfect opportunity for WFT to pick their guy of the future while learning from 3 guys who really know Rivera’s system. Once Riverboat Ron feels like Jones has it, they’ll give him the keys. Or injuries will force him onto the field. Either way, no fantasy value just yet.
#14 - Vikings: Micah Parsons (LB) - Penn State
Fantasy Outlook: IDP players pay attention to this guy! Vikings D needs an identity & it starts with Parsons. Look for him to lead like Chase Young has done in Washington. His combination of strength, versatility & speed is exactly what MIN is looking for to finally stop the run.
#15 - Patriots: Kyle Pitts (TE) - Florida
I don’t even want to go there about ‘Another TE from Florida to the Pats’ because that’s not fair to Pitts. He’s a unique talent that will boom for Belichick right away. Bill knows how to use TE’s & Josh McDaniels is going to love the creativity Pitts will give him.
Fantasy Outlook: Depending on the QB situation, Pitts could finish in the Top 8 for TE’s in 2021. In his first year with the Pats, Gronk caught 10 Touchdowns. In 2020 that would’ve been 2nd among all TE’s. Pitts could post a similar number & there's a good chance he'll have more than the 42 rec. Gronk had as a rookie. To finish as a Top 8 TE in 2020 Pitts would’ve needed ~50 rec, ~600 yds, and 7 TD’s. Gronk’s rookie year in NE he had 42 rec, 546 yds, 10 TD’s. If Pitts falls to the Pats' and they figure out their QB Q's then look to go after Pitts early and often.
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