2021 NFL Draft: Panthers trade up, QBs go early in 2021 NFL mock draft

Jacksonville Jaguars makes Ohio State's Justin Fields their new franchise quarterback in this mock draft (Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images)
Jacksonville Jaguars makes Ohio State's Justin Fields their new franchise quarterback in this mock draft (Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images) /
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Trevor Lawrence, 2021 NFL Draft
2021 NFL Draft prospect Trevor Lawrence #16 of the Clemson Tigers (Photo by Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports) /

The 2021 NFL Draft is two short months away, but so much is left to be decided in that time. We are expecting one of the craziest free agency periods in history, especially due to the cap dropping significantly. Quarterbacks could be on the move, and some teams will have to make a ton of moves to get under the cap number. Rosters could look drastically different than they did just a short time ago.

The 2021 NFL Draft process will be crazier too, with no set scouting combine and only pro days to go off of. Will the numbers be accurate? It’s hard to say. What is clear, though, is that teams will once again rely on tape, some of which goes back to 2019 to get a clear view of prospects.

The one thing that won’t change is the need for a quarterback in the 2021 NFL Draft.

They will come off the board early, and in this mock draft, they do just that (one of which is acquired via a trad). Without further ado, let’s dive in to the latest mock draft, which features a few new faces in the first round.

This mock draft was completed using the NFL Mock Draft Database simulator.

Clemson. 1. player. Pick Analysis. 52. Scouting Report. Quarterback. Trevor Lawrence

The first pick in the 2021 NFL Draft won’t budge from the consensus here. The Jacksonville Jaguars need a franchise quarterback in their building, and while Gardner Minshew is serviceable, having the number one pick gives them the chance to select Trevor Lawrence.

Lawrence recently threw at the Clemson pro day, and put together a solid day of work. His 65-yard throw was the highlight. Lawrence isn’t a perfect prospect and struggles with deep accuracy at times, but he’s calm amongst the chaos in the pocket, displays great arm talent, and can make plays off-structure look simple.

30. Scouting Report. Quarterback. BYU. Zach Wilson. 2. player. Pick Analysis

The New York Jets find themselves in a predicament at the second overall selection. Sam Darnold hasn’t been great, but he’s still a young quarterback and the organization has a lot of draft capital. General manager Joe Douglas and head coach Robert Saleh have a tough decision to make.

Ultimately, it comes down to how they view the quarterback class after Lawrence in the 2021 NFL Draft. Here, they believe in the value the class has to offer and select BYU quarterback Zach Wilson. Wilson has a live arm and has some insane plays on tape, but he needs to get better in terms of reading defenses from a clean pocket and work on not bailing early.