2021 Draft Predictions: Entire Weekend
SEC has most players drafted
The SEC and Big ten tend to have the most players drafted every year, and the SEC usually takes the slight edge. While several players in both conferences opted out of the season, it seemed like the SEC had more talent on the field in 2020. No reason to think the trend won't continue.
5 QBs drafted in top 10
In normal years, this would be a crazy prediction. However, the QB carousel has been nuts this year and teams seem interested in the top signal-callers of this class. We know QBs will be taken one, two, and three-- Trevor Lawrence to Jacksonville, Zach Wilson to the Jets, and one of the remaining players to San Francisco. Atlanta could also choose to take the heir apparent to Matt Ryan while Carolina and Denver both may be in the market despite recent trades. Teams like New Orleans, New England, Washington, and Chicago could also trade up in an effort to land their franchise signal-callers.
Run on defenders on Day 2 and early Day 3
There aren't that many defensive players expected to be drafted on the first day, but there are a myriad of defenders that seem to have 2nd to 4th round grades from scouts and experts. Therefore, it only makes sense that runs on defensive players will happen in the middle rounds.
Seattle "reaches" for someone
Seattle doesn't have a first round pick this year, but the Seahawks' board is always a little different than others. In recent years, we have seen them draft guys like Rashad Penny, LJ Collier, and Jordyn Brooks in the first round. Mid-round picks will be less of reaches, but it is always interesting to see how Seattle values prospects.
The Patriots continue their trading ways
The Patriots have been know to trade back and acquire more picks. I think this year would be a good year for them to trade up in the first and we will likely get some trade downs in the middle rounds as well. They haven't had a lot of draft success lately, but they tend to move around the board.
Detroit makes multiple trades--possibly giving up some players that no longer fit the team
They've made it well known that they are more than willing to trade down in the first round, and it could be an option again later. GM Brad Holmes is trying to turnover his roster and only has six draft picks to use this weekend, so it makes sense that they would want to acquire more picks. Holmes also comes from a front office that is not afraid to make trades and take big swings. There are also a few players that may benefit from a change of scenery on their roster. We'll see if they use that to their advantage.
Chicago drafts Davis Mills
I have no idea what Mills will be as a pro. Heck, we barely saw him in college. The Bears front office is desperate for a franchise quarterback but is poorly positioned for one of the elite prospects in this draft barring a trade. The front office needs to win now and Mills reportedly has a favorable reputation in the league.
We're all going to expect Aaron Rodgers to get traded...but it won't happen
Rodgers is unhappy but Green Bay will do whatever it takes to appease him. I believe that as long as they get him help in this draft, he won't be going anywhere. Of course, I'm not inside the relationship, so I have no idea how deeply fractured it is. I just feel like we've seen this before from others.
At least one notable player gets traded
I already said I don't think it will be Rodgers or Garoppolo, but there are plenty of other options. I think the most probable is New England CB Stephon Gilmore, who is an upcoming free agent and wants more money for the 2021 season. Others who fit the bill would be Jacksonville's Gardner Minshew, Vegas QB Marcus Mariota, Eagles TE Zach Ertz, and Bears WR Anthony Miller.
Fewer FCS players drafted than usual
This is pretty obvious with COVID. Yes, there are a few players from the FCS level who opted out of the season and have impressed scouts enough to get drafted. Yet, the lower levels of college football decided to play football in the spring this year. This could cause some players to get drafted in the middle of their own seasons, but it's more likely that scouts haven't been able to see enough of the other players given the situation.