2021 NFL Mock Draft: First-round projections after trades, free agency

(Photo by Gary Cosby Jr/The Tuscaloosa News via USA TODAY Sports)
(Photo by Gary Cosby Jr/The Tuscaloosa News via USA TODAY Sports) /
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Chuck Cook-USA TODAY Sports
Chuck Cook-USA TODAY Sports /

The 2021 NFL draft gets more interesting by the day with all the trades leading up to it and here’s a stab at how things play out with a first-round 2021 NFL mock draft. 

We have a little more than three weeks remaining until the 2021 NFL draft. Things have been changing by the day it seems, with big trades and big moves changing how the draft could play out.

The 49ers made their move up to the No. 3 pick, while Miami eventually moved down to No. 6, and the Eagles landed at No. 12.

Then, things got even more interesting as the Carolina Panthers, one of the teams rumored to be after a quarterback in the 2021 NFL draft, traded for Sam Darnold and used multiple picks to do so, suggesting they will give him a shot to be their starter.

How will all of this impact the first round of the 2021 NFL draft? Well, here’s our first-round mock draft as we project who goes where on draft night.

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

This is a no-brainer just like it was during our early mocks of the 2021 NFL draft. Lawrence to Jacksonville is a forgone conclusion.

New head coach Urban Meyer wants an elite quarterback to build around and it seems like he has settled on Lawrence. Others have started to say that Zach Wilson could be the QB1 in this class but the Jags aren’t among them.

Let the negotiation begin.

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

When the New York Jets traded Sam Darnold to the Panthers earlier this week, that left New York without a face of the franchise, but not for long.

That’s because the Jets are going to take BYU’s Zach Wilson and while plenty of folks love Lawrence and what he brings, some view Wilson as being even better. At the very least, there is talk that he has more long-term upside.

Lawrence might be thought of by some as the next Peyton Manning; Wilson is getting more comparisons to Aaron Rodgers and Patrick Mahomes just due to his arm talent. We’ll see but the Jets fans should be happy on draft night.