3. Shaun Wade, DB, Ohio State
There will be a lot of Ohio State players on the list, and that’s just how it is. They continue to churn out top talent, and it’s no different for the 2021 NFL Draft. The Buckeyes have become “defensive back university” to a lot of analysts, and Shaun Wade will be the latest in line to go in the first round.
Wade also could have declared early for 2020, but decided to return to school to boost his stock. Most analysts agreed he would’ve been a late first-round player in 2020, and it’s likely he will go early this coming April, even without a season.
Wade brings a lot of versatility to the table as a prospect. He’s taken snaps as a safety, where he’s played the “robber”, roaming the middle of the field in a cover one look. Wade has also played in the slot and on the boundary, succeeding in every spot he plays.
His best position will likely be corner, where he shows off fluid hips to change direction and good recovery acceleration. Wade has the long speed to carry wide receivers vertically and is physical enough to challenge them at the catch point. He’s a first-round prospect without another season in the Big Ten.