*This pick comes via the Laremy Tunsil trade with the Houston Texans.
The Houston Texans made a deep playoff run in the Madden simulation, lowering the value of the Dolphins’ second first-round selection of this mock draft. After snagging Tua an elite pass-catcher earlier, the Dolphins turn their attention to the defense late in the first round by taking Oregon safety Jevon Holland.
Holland is a strong athlete at the safety position who shows solid range and ball skills on the back-end. He is a versatile player who can play near the line of scrimmage, as a deep safety or even slot cornerback. His combination of quickness and toughness in the defensive backfield is impressive and allows him to compete in a variety of roles. Dolphins coach Brian Flores would love a guy like Holland and he could quickly become a massive defensive playmaker for the team.
The secondary stands out as a major area of need for the Dallas Cowboys. Their cornerback situation is okay, but they need to invest in the safety position in the 2021 NFL Draft. Paris Ford is an exciting safety prospect who shines as a downhill defender. He is extremely aggressive and quick to the ball, and does a fantastic job of tackling in space.
Ford is a tremendous athlete who is most proven as an in-the-box safety who shines against the run. However, do not sleep on his upside in coverage. He should not be trusted as a deep zone defender yet, but his athletic profile suggests that he could quickly grow into the role.
While Ford is not a perfect player, he is an exciting defensive playmaker who should be a first-round selection in the 2021 NFL Draft. The Cowboys would be finding great value if they were able to snag him in this range.