2021 NFL Draft Stock – Week 11

This new section highlights which players have improved or worsened their 2021 NFL Draft stock as the draft approaches.

By Charlie Campbell.
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2021 NFL Draft Stock Up

Mac Jones, QB, Alabama
As we reported in the Hot Press, Jones is getting grades that range from the second to the fourth round. He has completed 79 percent of his passes this season for 2,196 yards with 16 touchdowns and two interceptions. In speaking to five different teams, three of them had a fourth-round grade on Jones, one of them had him on the bubble between Rounds 2 and 3, and one if them gave him a second-round grade.

“He’s a stronger armed Jake Fromm,” said one area scout. “He distributes the ball well to all those great weapons. Jones has some ability. His arm is good enough, a little stronger than Jake’s. Mac can anticipate, and sees the field well. I think he could have a career in the NFL similar to Matt Barkley.”

Considering Jones entered the season as a potential late-round pick, he is enjoying a nice rise during his dominant 2020.

Alex Leatherwood, OT, Alabama
Leatherwood has played well for Alabama thus far in 2020. Team sources say he has shown improvement but still has some issues to clean up for the NFL. Leatherwood needs some work in the run game because he is a position-and-wall-off guy rather than a people mover. Leatherwood has problems when it’s time to get physical, but for the passing-driven NFL his pass protection is a great selling point. He has performed very well in pass protection as a senior and has a great skill set to block on the edge in the NFL.

The 6-foot-6, 322-pound Leatherwood possesses good feet, athleticism, excellent size, and length. Evaluators like his lenght and athleticism, which make it difficult for defenders to get around him. Thus, they think given his excellent talent at a premium position, he will be a first-round pick and could go in the top 20.

Landon Dickerson, C, Alabama
Dickerson done a nice job for Alabama so far in 2020, helping himself with NFL teams. He’s receiving second- and third-round grades according to some team sources. Dickerson has some skill-set limitations for the next level, but he has very good technique and is fundamentally sound. Dickerson is a smart center who knows how to play the game. The 6-foot-6, 308-pounder should hear his name called on Friday night of the 2021 NFL Draft.

Trevon Grimes, WR, Florida
Because Kyle Pitts has been so impressive and Kadarius Toney has provided a lot of big plays, Trevon Grimes has gone under the radar this fall. Grimes though is having a really good season of his own for the Gators. The 6-foot-4, 218-pounder has been a clutch receiver and red zone weapon for Trask. Against Arkansas last Saturday, Grimes showed good route-running to find soft spots in zone and also used his big size to win contested catches, just like he did against Georgia. Versus Arkansas, Grimes caught six passes for 109 yards and two touchdowns.

Grimes has good size for the next level with enough quickness to get downfield and an ability to make catches over defenders. If Grimes puts up a fast 40 before the 2021 NFL Draft, that could cause a huge rise in his draft stock. If he simply doesn’t run slow times, he could be a mid-round pick who develops into a contributor and has the potential to be a solid rotational receiver for the next level.

Dazz Newsome, WR, North Carolina
Last Saturday, Newsome played a huge role in leading the Tar Heels to its shootout victory over Wake Forest. In the first quarter, Newsome ripped off a 75-yard touchdown, running a slant in zone coverage in the middle of the field to get open and then exploding down the field. Wake Forest’s safety was too slow, letting Newsome race away from the defense for the score. In the second quarter, Newsome hauled in an easy 44-yard touchdown. He lined up in the slot and went vertically with a fade to the front corner of the end zone. He slid past a freshman safety to get wide open for the score. On both plays, Newsome showed the speed to separate and run away from the defense.

Newsome totaled 189 yards on 10 catches with two scores against the Demon Deacons. He showed solid route-running and a second gear to challenge defenses down field. In the NFL, Newsome (5-11, 190) would fit best as a slot receiver. His outing against Wake Forest is going to help his draft grade, and he could have mid-round or third-day potential in the 2021 NFL Draft.

2020 NFL Draft Stock Down

Deonte Brown, G, Alabama
Team sources have told me they are grading Brown as a late-round pick for the 2021 NFL Draft. He is a big guard who is a solid run blocker and has limitations as a pass protector. Along with those issues, there have been some off-the-field issues for Brown during his time with Alabama. If Brown finishes the season well and has a strong showing in pre-draft workouts, he could be a third-day pick in the 2021 NFL Draft.

Aidan Hutchinson, DE, Michigan
Hutchinson had an excellent start to the 2020 season with a superb showing against Minnesota, but against Indiana, Hutchinson broke his leg, which has him out indefinitely. Michigan has been evasive about the nature and extent of the injury, but Hutchinson had surgery to fix the fracture. Hutchinson could have been a riser this season, but being knocked out by an injury for an indefinite amount of time really hurts his ability to climb before the 2021 NFL Draft.

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