The 2021 NFL Draft defensive line class is one of the weakest we’ve had in quite some time. There is no sure-fire top 10 pick. There might not even be a top 20 pick. The last time there wasn’t a defensive lineman selected in the top 10? You’d have to go back to 2012.
If you’re looking at this year’s class, Michigan’s Kwity Paye, Miami’s Jaelen Philips and his Hurricane teammate Gregory Rosseau are among the elites of this group. As good as those guys are, nobody stands out as the truly elite prospect that scouts love.
As a result, there will have to be guys found late that can stand out and contribute late. Some of the past big names to come on day three of the draft include Gino Atkins and Everson Griffen. This is going back nearly 50 years, but Deacon Jones, one of the greatest and most impactful pro football players ever, was a 14th round pick.
Who could be the best potential late-round steals or sleepers in the 2021 NFL Draft along the defensive line?