Las Vegas Raiders: Way-too-early 2021 NFL mock draft

Jon Gruden, Las Vegas Raiders (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
Jon Gruden, Las Vegas Raiders (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images) /
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Trey Lance, 2021 NFL Draft, mock draft
2021 NFL Draft prospect, Trey Lance (Photo by Sam Wasson/Getty Images) /

Scouting Report. Quarterback. North Dakota State. player. 28. Pick Analysis. Trey Lance. 8

The Las Vegas Raiders are projected to have the eighth overall selection in the 2021 NFL Draft which remains consistent with preseason Vegas over/under lines for each team. If the Raiders drop back into a top ten pick, it likely will bring an end to the Derek Carr’s time with the franchise. While Carr’s contract runs through the 2022 season, the Raiders can cut the veteran quarterback after this season and only carry $2.5 million of dead cap into the next season.

While it is fair to debate if Carr’s lack of success comes down to his performance or the play calling and scheme put around him, both Mayock and Gruden will look to the early-round draft pick as an opportunity to bring in their guy and recreate the offense. A change in quarterback also allows the Las Vegas Raiders to recreate their branding in a new city.

The Raiders could look to move up in the 2021 NFL Draft for Trevor Lawrence, but if the Clemson star is unavailable, North Dakota State quarterback Trey Lance may be the best fit for the silver and black. While NDSU doesn’t carry the household recognition like Ohio State’s Justin Fields, Lance may be the second-best quarterback in the 2021 draft class.

Lance is an incredibly efficient passer and posted a 28 touchdown, 0 interception season as a first-year starter in route to another North Dakota State Division I FCS championship. Lance sat behind Easton Stickfew at NDSU and dominated the lower divisions with over 2,700 yards passing and over 1,000 yards rushing and 14 rushing touchdowns. Mariota’s addition this past offseason could be a nod in the direction of the Las Vegas Raiders’ future offense.

Lance quickly distributes the ball and is a very effective short-yardage passer. He possesses NFL strength and measuring at 6-foot-3, fits the mold of the new generation at quarterback. Lance has demonstrated the ability to hit targets 50 yards downfield at ease and at this point, his biggest question mark looks to be his level of competition.

Unlike Carson Wentz, Trey Lance is already generating buzz heading into what should be his final season with the Bison and should be one of the early quarterbacks selected in the 2021 NFL Draft. Lance gives Gruden and the Las Vegas Raiders an explosive playmaker and a fresh look on offense.