Updated April 30, 2021
By Charlie Campbell. Follow Charlie on Twitter @draftcampbell.
The 2021 NFL Draft is finally here! Here are some rumors that I have heard from sources with Round 2 of the 2021 NFL Draft just hours away.
One player who could hear his name called tonight higher than the consensus projections is Vanderbilt defensive end Dayo Odeyingbo. Odeyingbo was a potential first-round pick before tearing an Achilles in January during training. Given the weak class of defensive linemen, Odeyingbo could have risen into first-round status if it weren't for the injury. Teams love the skill set and upside with the 6-foot-6, 280-pound Odeyingbo. They feel he could grow into being a dangerous three-technique in a 4-3 defense who is a good interior pass rusher. From what I'm hearing, Odeyingbo could still go in Round 2 of the 2021 NFL Draft.
There were some interesting offensive line selections in the middle of the first round. The Jets were able to help their young quarterback when they moved up in Round 1 from No. 23 to No. 14 to take USC left tackle/guard Alijah Vera-Tucker. He will play guard or right tackle for New York, and a few picks later, the Raiders took Alabama left tackle Alex Leatherwood at No. 17. Leatherwood also played guard and right tackle with the Crimson Tide, and he will slide in at right tackle to replace Trent Brown. Many criticized Las Vegas' pick because the media had not projected Leatherwood correctly.
Sources with the Jets say Leatherwood was a candidate for them at No. 23, and I have spoken with league staffers who say Vera-Tucker was in consideration for the Raiders at No. 17. The criticism of the Raiders taking Leatherwood is misguided, as a lot of teams had him projected to the first round. The media just didn't realize that teams valued him there.
With the Raiders taking a right tackle in the first round, expect them to aggresively target the defense tonight on the second day of the 2021 NFL Draft. The Raiders want to find more talent and competition all across their defense, so they could target the best defensive players regardless of position. Las Vegas wants more talent at safety, cornerback, linebacker, and along the inside or outside of the defensive line. Expect Raiders general manager Mike Mayock and head coach Jon Gruden to give new defensive coordinator Gus Bradley a lot more competition and depth for his defense.