2021 NFL Mock Draft – Round 1 (1-16) – Charlie Campbell

* Walt taking 2014 and 2018
Charlie Campbell, Senior Draft Analyst
Last update: Thursday, April 29, 2021. Round 7 added.
Follow Charlie on Twitter @draftcampbell for updates.
Led all NFL media in draft rumor accuracy in ’15, ’16, ’17, ’18, ’20, ’21, and ’22
Led all NFL media in correct picks for the 2017, 2019, and 2022 NFL Drafts
2nd Place in all NFL media with correct picks for 2021

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2024 NFL Mock Draft (UPDATED 4/23): Round 1 /Picks 17-32 /Round 2 /Round 3 /Round 4 /Round 5 /Round 6 Other 2024 Mock Drafts: Charlie Campbell (4/23) /April Fools Mock (3/31)
2025 NFL Mock Draft (UPDATED 4/22): Round 1 /Picks 17-32
Other 2025 Mock Drafts: Charlie Campbell (3/23)
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1. NFL Team Logo for Jaguars Jacksonville Jaguars: Trevor Lawrence, QB, Clemson

The Jacksonville Jaguars won the lottery with landing the No. 1-overall pick given there is a generational quarterback prospect available. This is a no-brainer pick for Urban Meyer, and it will be fascinating to see if Meyer and Trent Baalke squander Lawrence the way Ryan Grigson and Chuck Pagano squandered Andrew Luck, or if they deliver on Lawrence’s promise and make Jacksonville a consistent Super Bowl contender. With a plethora of draft picks and money to spend in free agency, this is a golden opportunity for the franchise to become an elite championship team in the NFL.

Lawrence made some beautiful throws in 2020, showing off his powerful arm, accuracy, and an impressive ability to throw on the run. His deep ball accuracy was phenomenal. On the year, Lawrence completed 69 percent of his passes in 2020 for 3,153 yards, 24 touchdowns passing and five interceptions. Lawrence also rushed for eight touchdowns.

In 2019, Lawrence completed 66 percent of his passes for 3,665 yards with 36 touchdowns and eight interceptions. He also ran for 563 yards and nine touchdowns while leading Clemson back to the National Championship Game. Lawrence showed further development as a passer and as a team leader. Lawrence took college football by storm as a freshman in 2018, compiling a flawless season that culminated with him ripping Alabama’s defense comprised of NFL talent to win another National Championship for Clemson. Lawrence completed 65 percent of his passes for 3,280 yards with 30 touchdowns and four interceptions on the year.

The 6-foot-5, 205-pounder has a powerful arm, developed poise, and play-making ability. Lawrence makes good decisions while distributing the ball well to his phenomenal supporting cast. On top of his great size and arm, Lawrence is a dangerous runner with surprising speed and moves in the open field. He can make something out of nothing and shows real toughness as a runner. Lawrence needs to improve not staring down his first read and getting quicker at working through his progressions.

Click links to see the Jaguars' picks across all rounds:
Rd: 1 Pk: 25  |  Click here to jump to the Jaguars' first second-round pick.  |  Rd: 2 Pk: 13  |  Rd: 3 Pk: 1  |  Rd: 4 Pk: 1  |  Rd: 4 Pk: 25  |  Rd: 5 Pk: 1  |  Rd: 5 Pk: 26  |  Rd: 7 Pk: 21

2. NFL Team Logo for Jets New York Jets: Zach Wilson, QB, BYU

In the early half of April, team sources said the Jets were trending toward Zach Wilson, but Mac Jones and Justin Fields were still being discussed. The team will probably settle on Wilson as its future franchise quarterback.

Wilson has some arm talent, makes good decisions, and has an efficient style of play. The 6-foot-3, 210-pounder also is a very good athlete who can pick up yards with his feet and is excellent at buying time to escape the pass rush and extend plays. Team sources say Wilson is confident and intelligent, plays tough, has keen recall, and inspires his teammates play for him. On the negative side, they say Wilson is a rich, entitled brat who rather than being a leader, is a selfish know-it-all – his parents are a pain to deal with too. In the short interviews at the combine and in Zoom meetings, Wilson probably be a star because his intelligence, confidence and excellent recall will shine through in those environments.

Wilson played well in 2020, dominating a lot of weak competition and completing 73 percent of his passes for 3,692 yards with 33 touchdowns and three interceptions. He also notched 10 rushing scores. In 2019, he completed 62.4 percent of his passes for 2,382 yards with 11 touchdowns and nine interceptions. In 2018, he completed 66 percent of his passes for 1,578 yards with 12 touchdowns and three interceptions.

Click links to see the Jets' picks across all rounds:
Rd: 1 Pk: 23  |  Click here to jump to the Jets' second-round pick.  |  Rd: 3 Pk: 2  |  Rd: 3 Pk: 22  |  Rd: 4 Pk: 2  |  Rd: 5 Pk: 2  |  Rd: 5 Pk: 10  |  Rd: 6 Pk: 2  |  Rd: 6 Pk: 42

3. NFL Team Logo for 49ers San Francisco 49ers: Trey Lance, QB, North Dakota State

This pick will obviously be a quarterback, but the question is: Which one? The San Francisco staff has been coy in conversations with friends at other teams while on the pro-day circuit. Many team staffers around the league believe the 49ers did the move up with Justin Fields as the target because they would have to get in front of Atlanta and Carolina to ensure they could land Fields. Media members like NFL.com’s Daniel Jeremiah and ESPN’s Adam Schefter are saying they believe the pick will be Mac Jones. And there are more rumors of Trey Lance being the target, with NFL Network’s Rich Eisen saying he hears Lance is the pick. So really, it’s anyone’s guess.

Ultimately, I settled on Lance because Jones does not have the skill set of a high first-round pick. Lance is very smart with great intangibles and a better skill set. From a schematic perspective, he is a great fit for Kyle Shanahan. A lot of team staffers think Lance is the pick after Fields seemingly was dropped from consideration, and the Jones hype was a big smokescreen. I’ll lean on their opinion.

Lance’s one game of the 2020 season was a mixed outing. He missed some throws and made some mistakes, but considering the rust factor, that is somewhat understandable. Lance completed 15-of-30 passes for 149 yards with two touchdowns and an interception. He ran for 143 yards and two touchdowns on 15 carries as well. The 2019 season was Lance’s first year of playing time, and he produced a huge year, completing 67 percent of his passes for 2,786 yards with 28 touchdowns and zero interceptions.

Lance is listed at 6-foot-3, 221 pounds, and sources say he has a good skill set of physical tools. In the spring of 2020, scouts told me they needed to see more from Lance and were wary of a 1-year-wonder situation, but North Dakota State had its football season canceled, other than that one game, which makes Lance a tougher and more risky evaluation for the 2021 NFL Draft.

Click links to see the 49ers' picks across all rounds:
Click here to jump to the 49ers' second-round pick.  |  Rd: 3 Pk: 38  |  Rd: 4 Pk: 12  |  Rd: 5 Pk: 11  |  Rd: 5 Pk: 28  |  Rd: 5 Pk: 36  |  Rd: 6 Pk: 10  |  Rd: 7 Pk: 2

4. NFL Team Logo for Falcons Atlanta Falcons: Kyle Pitts, TE, Florida

Terry Fontenot and Arthur Smith land the best player in the 2021 NFL Draft aside from Trevor Lawrence. Pitts could be the long-term No. 1 receiving target once Julio Jones ages out. In the short term, Pitts, Jones and Calvin Ridley could make the Atlanta offense lethal again.

Team sources say they think Pitts is a top-10 talent due to his dynamic ability as a receiver, and some scouts feel he is the best receiving weapon in the 2021 NFL Draft. Some think he could play wide receiver and be a poor man’s Calvin Johnson. Others think Pitts should stay at tight end, where could be a Travis Kelce- or Tony Gonzalez-caliber weapon. The consensus among team evaluators is that Pitts is a far better tight end prospect than T.J. Hockenson, Eric Ebron, O.J. Howard or Evan Engram.

Pitts was incredible in 2020, showing speed on long touchdown receptions, size on jump balls, superior route-running to create separation, good hands, and dangerous yards-after-the-catch skills. He was too fast for linebackers and some defensive backs while being too big for safeties or cornerbacks in coverage. Pitts is matchup nightmare and the most dynamic mismatch receiving weapon in the 2021 NFL Draft, including Ja’Marr Chase, DeVonta Smith and Jaylen Waddle. The 6-foot-6, 239-pound Pitts also is known to be a great kid who loves football, works hard, is a good teammate, is a nice guy off the field, and is very intelligent with a tremendous football I.Q. Sources who worked with him at Florida, say he is the nicest guy six days a week, but on game day, he flips the switch and is a fierce competitor.

Pitts totaled 43 receptions for 770 yards and 12 touchdowns in 2020. He turned into play-maker in 2019, creating mismatches in the passing game while recording 54 receptions for 649 yards and five touchdowns.

Click links to see the Falcons' picks across all rounds:
Click here to jump to the Falcons' second-round pick.  |  Rd: 3 Pk: 4  |  Rd: 4 Pk: 3  |  Rd: 5 Pk: 4  |  Rd: 5 Pk: 38  |  Rd: 5 Pk: 39  |  Rd: 6 Pk: 3  |  Rd: 6 Pk: 35

5. NFL Team Logo for Bengals Cincinnati Bengals: Ja’Marr Chase, WR, LSU

Cincinnati grabs a long-term No. 1 receiver for Joe Burrow. Chase, Tee Higgins and Tyler Boyd could form a special trio, and the Bengals can target offensive line help on Day 2.

Chase (6-1, 200) enjoyed a breakout 2019 season and was a source of big plays for the Tigers’ offense. On the year, the sophomore averaged 21.2 yards per reception with 84 catches for 1,780 yards and 20 touchdowns. He was the No. 1 receiver for the Tigers’ offense, showing off game-breaking speed with quality route-running and yards-after-the-catch ability. Chase was the best wide receiver in college football in 2019, and there wasn’t a close second. As a freshman, he had 23 catches for 313 yards with three scores.

Click links to see the Bengals' picks across all rounds:
Click here to jump to the Bengals' second-round pick.  |  Rd: 3 Pk: 5  |  Rd: 4 Pk: 6  |  Rd: 5 Pk: 5  |  Rd: 6 Pk: 6  |  Rd: 6 Pk: 18  |  Rd: 7 Pk: 7

6. NFL Team Logo for Dolphins Miami Dolphins: Jaylen Waddle, WR, Alabama

The Dolphins grab Tua Tagovailoa a big play wide receiver and a dynamic speed mismatch weapon to go across from DeVante Parker. Immediately, Waddle could form a lethal trio with Parker and Will Fuller that will really help Tagovailoa to make strides in his second year.

Waddle is extremely fast and could develop into a dynamic outside or slot receiver. Some team sources think the 5-foot-10, 182-pounder could be a Tyreek Hill-type game breaker in the NFL. Waddle has game-changing speed and the ability to score on any touch of the football. He some development as a route-runner, but his upside is off the charts and immediately he will be a receiver capable of stretching a defense and tilting coverage to his side of the field.

Waddle notched 28 receptions for 591 yards and four touchdowns in 2020 while missing a lot of time with an ankle injury. In 2019, Waddle recorded 33 receptions for 560 yards and six touchdowns. He would have produced more at other schools, but at Alabama, he was rotated with a loaded receiving corps that included the likes of Jerry Jeudy, Henry Ruggs and DeVonta Smith. Waddle recorded 45 receptions for 848 yards and seven touchdowns in 2018.

Click links to see the Dolphins' picks across all rounds:
Rd: 1 Pk: 18  |  Click here to jump to the Dolphins' first second-round pick.  |  Rd: 2 Pk: 18  |  Rd: 3 Pk: 17  |  Rd: 5 Pk: 12  |  Rd: 6 Pk: 24  |  Rd: 7 Pk: 3  |  Rd: 7 Pk: 16

7. NFL Team Logo for Lions Detroit Lions: Penei Sewell, OT, Oregon

The Lions take the best player available and land a right tackle to go with Taylor Decker. With Sewell, Decker, Frank Ragnow and Jonah Jackson, Detroit could have the makings of one of the best offensive lines in the NFL.

Sewell (6-6, 325) had a dominant 2019 season as the blind-side protector for Justin Herbert. With his good size, length, quickness and athleticism, Sewell has a nice skill set that could end up making him one of the top choices of the 2021 NFL Draft. For his excellent sophomore season, Sewell won the Outland Trophy and was the Pac-12 co-offensive player of the year. Sewell was a shutdown pass protector as a freshman in 2018, not allowing a sack in over 926 snaps. He only was credited with allowing seven pressures and two hits that season. Having skipped the Pac-12’s pandemic-shortened season has not harmed Sewell’s draft stock because he had already produced two good seasons of tape for the NFL to examine.

Click links to see the Lions' picks across all rounds:
Click here to jump to the Lions' second-round pick.  |  Rd: 3 Pk: 8  |  Rd: 3 Pk: 37  |  Rd: 4 Pk: 7  |  Rd: 5 Pk: 9

8. NFL Team Logo for Panthers Carolina Panthers: Jaycee Horn, CB, South Carolina

The Panthers need, among other things, a No. 1 cornerback, a linebacker, a three-technique defensive tackle, and more offensive line talent. If Penei Sewell gets to this pick, I think Carolina will take him. With Sewell off the board, if the Panthers can’t trade down, I think they take Horn and land the No. 1 corner their defense desperately needs.

A lot of scouts and team sources have fallen more in love with Horn this spring as they have pored over his tape. They love how competitive he is and his ability to run the route and prevent separation. Horn has good size to him, can take on big outside receivers, and has shown a nice talent for breaking up passes. Horn (6-1, 205) helped himself as a junior, showing improved ball skills. Some sources are concerned about his long speed, but everybody loves how hard he competes and how he blankets receivers.

Horn looked very good in 2020, holding his own against Florida’s dynamic receivers and dominating Auburn. He totaled 16 tackles, two interceptions and six passes defended for his season. Horn opted out of the final three games of the year after head coach Will Muschamp was fired. Horn broke into the starting lineup as a true freshman and showed improvement in his sophomore season. Jaycee Horn is the son of former Saints wide receiver Joe Horn.

Click links to see the Panthers' picks across all rounds:
Click here to jump to the Panthers' second-round pick.  |  Rd: 3 Pk: 9  |  Rd: 4 Pk: 8  |  Rd: 5 Pk: 7  |  Rd: 6 Pk: 7  |  Rd: 6 Pk: 9  |  Rd: 6 Pk: 38

9. NFL Team Logo for Broncos Denver Broncos: Justin Fields, QB, Ohio State

Clearly, Denver is not sold on Drew Lock, having tried to trade for Matthew Stafford. I think the Broncos will pull a small trade-up with a team like Detroit to get their quarterback of the future. It sounds like Denver wants Fields or Mac Jones, according to my good friend Cecil Lammey, hands down one of the best reporters and radio hosts in the NFL. Fields could be a star in Denver and be a prolific point producer with the amazing set of weapons brought in by John Elway.

Fields completed 70 percent of his passes in 2020 for 2,100 yards with 22 touchdowns and six interceptions. He had five rushing scores as well. Fields possesses a dynamic skill set with natural passing ability and is a dangerous runner. He is an accurate passer with a strong arm, is aggressive to push the ball downfield, and is a playmaker with his feet. Team sources agreed he looks like a bigger Deshaun Watson. Fields definitely needs development and refinement, as he as a serious lack of pocket awareness. Improving his pocket passing, executing in the face of the rush, handling blitzes, and anticipating receivers coming open are critical areas of emphasis for Fields.

Coming out of high school, Fields (6-3, 223) was one of the top recruits in the nation along with Trevor Lawrence. Fields started off his career at Georgia before transferring to Ohio State. In Fields’ one season at Georgia, he was 27-of-39 for 328 yards with four touchdowns passing and four touchdowns rushing. He took over as the Buckeyes’ starting quarterback in 2019 following Dwayne Haskins’ departure for the NFL and dominated the Big Ten. Fields completed 67 percent of his passes for 3,273 yards with 41 touchdowns and three interceptions. He also ran for 484 yards and 10 scores in 2019.

Click links to see the Broncos' picks across all rounds:
Click here to jump to the Broncos' second-round pick.  |  Rd: 3 Pk: 7  |  Rd: 4 Pk: 9  |  Rd: 5 Pk: 8  |  Rd: 7 Pk: 9  |  Rd: 7 Pk: 11  |  Rd: 7 Pk: 25

10. NFL Team Logo for Cowboys Dallas Cowboys: Patrick Surtain, CB, Alabama

The Cowboys grab a No. 1 corner for their defense.

Surtain notched 38 tackles, one pick-six and 11 passes batted in 2020 while playing sound coverage for Alabama. He gave up a long touchdown to Trevon Grimes in the SEC Championship and had some issues with the Gators receivers.

Surtain (6-2, 203) is a big corner who brings speed and athleticism to go with his size. He was the rare freshman defensive back to see the field under Nick Saban, and in 2018, Surtain contributed 28 tackles with an interception and seven passes defended. He moved to the “star” position for 2019, which is a critical nickel corner/safety role in Alabama’s defense. Surtain is a great fit for that position, like Minkah Fitzpatrick was in past years. As a sophomore in 2019, Surtain had 42 tackles with two interceptions, three forced fumbles and eight passes broken up. Surtain is the son of former Miami Dolphins corner and three-time Pro Bowler Patrick Surtain.

Click links to see the Cowboys' picks across all rounds:
Click here to jump to the Cowboys' second-round pick.  |  Rd: 3 Pk: 11  |  Rd: 3 Pk: 35  |  Rd: 4 Pk: 10  |  Rd: 4 Pk: 33  |  Rd: 5 Pk: 35  |  Rd: 6 Pk: 8  |  Rd: 6 Pk: 43  |  Rd: 7 Pk: 10

11. NFL Team Logo for Giants New York Giants: DeVonta Smith, WR, Alabama

The Giants need to get more receiving weapons for Daniel Jones, and the position has been a painful weakness since trading away Odell Beckham Jr. Kenny Golladay was a fine signing, but they could use more additions to help their young quarterback. They should double up at the position by adding receiver talent on Day 1 and Day 2 of the 2021 NFL Draft.

In 2020, Smith totaled 117 catches for 1,856 yards with 23 touchdowns and won the Heisman. He put together a tremendous junior season for Alabama, recording 68 receptions for 1,256 yards with 14 touchdowns. Smith had 42 catches for 693 yards and six scores in 2018.

For the NFL, Smith (6-1, 175) is dynamic receiver who could be a deadly weapon and has wide receiver No. 1 potential. He has the speed to get vertical and can burn defenses deep down the field. Smith is a phenomenal route-runner who is very sudden in and out of breaks. Cornerbacks are practically incapable of running with him, and Smith’s fabulous route-running leads to him creating separation. On top of getting open, Smith is superb after the catch with moves in the open field and a second gear to run away from defenders. Smith really is a complete package as a receiver and is NFL ready. It would not be surprising if Smith hits the ground running and is emerging as a dynamic wideout by the end of his rookie season.

Click links to see the Giants' picks across all rounds:
Click here to jump to the Giants' second-round pick.  |  Rd: 3 Pk: 12  |  Rd: 4 Pk: 11  |  Rd: 6 Pk: 12  |  Rd: 6 Pk: 17

12. NFL Team Logo for Eagles Philadelphia Eagles: Rashawn Slater, G, Northwestern

The Eagles have missed out on the top receivers and cornerbacks. Caleb Farley is available, but Howie Roseman has gotten burned by injured corners in the past – Sidney Jones. This scenario could easily happen in the actual 2021 NFL Draft, and if it does fall this way, the offensive line could get consideration. Slater could help Jalen Hurts in 2021 and be a long-term starter at tackle, center or guard.

Slater decided to sit out the 2020 season, but that hasn’t hurt his draft momentum. Some are projecting him high in the first round, while some team sources say they have Slater (6-3, 305) graded in the second round because they think his size limits him to guard or center in the NFL.

Slater is a good athlete who has legit speed for an offensive lineman. On the edge, Slater is fast and nimble, but he can struggle with length and strength. Slater was able to compensate at the college level through his intelligence, technique and toughness, but in the NFL, he could have problems with length and strength if he is on the edge. Some teams might try to play him at tackle, similar to a Kelvin Beachum or an Isaiah Wynn, but Slater definitely could play guard or center if he doesn’t work out at tackle. He might be the most dominant playing at center in the NFL, where he could be a Maurkice Pouncey-type snapper.

Click links to see the Eagles' picks across all rounds:
Click here to jump to the Eagles' second-round pick.  |  Rd: 3 Pk: 6  |  Rd: 3 Pk: 20  |  Rd: 4 Pk: 18  |  Rd: 5 Pk: 6  |  Rd: 6 Pk: 5  |  Rd: 6 Pk: 40  |  Rd: 6 Pk: 41  |  Rd: 7 Pk: 6  |  Rd: 7 Pk: 12

13. NFL Team Logo for Chargers Los Angeles Chargers: Alijah Vera-Tucker, OT/G, USC

The Chargers need more help on the offensive line. Vera-Tucker could be the long-term starter at left tackle for Los Angeles.

With Austin Jackson in the NFL, Vera-Tucker took over as the Trojans’ left tackle and played well in limited action. Vera-Tucker was going to sit out the 2020 season before opting back in, and re-joining USC helped him display the versatility to compete at guard or tackle in the NFL. The 6-foot-4, 315-pound Vera-Tucker was a good left guard for the Trojans in 2019 and has upside to develop at the next level.

In the ground game, Vera-Tucker is not a bull at the point of attack, but he is effective. He is more of a wall-off-and-position blocker who beats defenders to a spot to cover them up and keep them from making a tackle. He does a nice job of scrapping and keeping his hands fighting to sustain his blocks. It would help him to add strength if his frame isn’t maxed out. For a pro rushing offense, Vera-Tucker might fit best in a zone-blocking scheme.

There is a lot to like about Vera-Tucker in pass protection for the next level. He is an easy mover with athleticism, quickness and agility. He can glide with speed rushers, showing an easy ability to play the typewriter with his feet. Vera-Tucker is a natural knee bender who maintains good leverage while avoiding bending at the waist. He looks like a starting left tackle or guard in the NFL.

Click links to see the Chargers' picks across all rounds:
Click here to jump to the Chargers' second-round pick.  |  Rd: 3 Pk: 13  |  Rd: 3 Pk: 33  |  Rd: 4 Pk: 13  |  Rd: 5 Pk: 15  |  Rd: 6 Pk: 1  |  Rd: 6 Pk: 14  |  Rd: 7 Pk: 13

14. NFL Team Logo for Vikings Minnesota Vikings: Christian Darrisaw, OT, Virginia Tech

The Vikings continue their offensive line overhaul with a left tackle to replace Riley Reiff.

The 6-foot-5, 314-pound Darrisaw played well in 2020, creating a buzz. The junior has good size for the NFL and will enter the league as a 2-year starter at left tackle. Team sources have a love/hate responses to Darrisaw. Some see him as worthy of going early in the first round and think he is a legit first-rounder. Other sources, including a director of college scouting, said Darrisaw is a second-round pick, at best. They all agree Darrisaw is a good athlete with length and quickness, but he lacks a mean streak, physicality, and urgency as a blocker. Hence, opinions are divided with some teams being more tolerant of athletic finesse offensive linemen and others wanting to avoid that type of blocker.

Click links to see the Vikings' picks across all rounds:
Rd: 3 Pk: 14  |  Rd: 3 Pk: 26  |  Rd: 4 Pk: 14  |  Rd: 4 Pk: 20  |  Rd: 4 Pk: 29  |  Rd: 4 Pk: 38  |  Rd: 5 Pk: 13  |  Rd: 5 Pk: 24  |  Rd: 6 Pk: 15

15. NFL Team Logo for Patriots New England Patriots: Micah Parsons, LB, Penn State

New England grabs a long-term linebacker who is a good scheme fit.

Parsons totaled 109 tackles, five sacks, four forced fumbles and five passes defended in 2019. He was always around the ball and produced some splash plays for Penn State. Parsons broke into the starting lineup as a true freshman and showed he has lot of upside to develop into an intriguing player. In 2018, he totaled 83 tackles with five for a loss, 1.5 sacks and two forced fumbles.

Parsons (6-3, 245) has good size, speed and strength. Team sources say that while Parsons is not a criminal, he is being dinged for character in their reports. Some team sources feel Parsons is overrated because he is not real physical, lacks physicality taking on blocks, doesn’t play downhill, is a “clean air” guy, and his instincts do not jump out. However, Parsons has a great skill set, so he is still expected to go early in the 2021 NFL Draft. In this draft analyst’s opinion, what Parsons does best is fire upfield and I think his best fit in the NFL would be a 3-4 outside linebacker and pass rusher similar to Von Miller.

Click links to see the Patriots' picks across all rounds:
Click here to jump to the Patriots' second-round pick.  |  Rd: 3 Pk: 32  |  Rd: 4 Pk: 15  |  Rd: 4 Pk: 17  |  Rd: 4 Pk: 34  |  Rd: 5 Pk: 33  |  Rd: 6 Pk: 4  |  Rd: 6 Pk: 13  |  Rd: 7 Pk: 14

16. NFL Team Logo for Cardinals Arizona Cardinals: Zaven Collins, OLB, Tulsa

The Cardinals are said to like Collins a lot, and he makes sense for Steve Keim. Collins fits in with the high-upside versatile athletes Keim has drafted in the past, like Isaiah Simmons, Kyler Murray, Haason Reddick, Robert Nkemdiche and D.J. Humphries. Collins can play inside linebacker, drop into coverage, and rush off the edge with Chandler Jones and J.J. Watt.

Collins had a strong 2020 season, recording four sacks, four interceptions, two passes broken up, two forced fumbles and 54 tackles. He made a lot of highlight-reel plays, such as a 95-yard pick-six in overtime to top Tulane. In 2019, he totaled 97 tackles with two sacks. He had 85 stops and 1.5 sacks in 2018.

The 6-foot-4, 260-pound Collins has a good skill set for the next level and looked massively improved in terms of his pass-rush ability in 2020. He is big, quick, and a versatile athlete also showing the ability to drop into coverage. Team sources are raving about Collins and think he could be a Sam – strong side – linebacker or Mike – middle – linebacker in a 4-3 defense or play outside linebacker in a 3-4 defense.

Click links to see the Cardinals' picks across all rounds:
Click here to jump to the Cardinals' second-round pick.  |  Rd: 5 Pk: 16  |  Rd: 6 Pk: 39  |  Rd: 7 Pk: 15  |  Rd: 7 Pk: 19