Ranking and analyzing the top 100 prospects in the 2021 NFL Draft
About four months ago, I had posted a big board in the Fan Post section of the site (if you do not view Fan Post articles already, I highly encourage that you check that part of the site out), and Pittzblitz56 approached me about doing a potential collaborative big board that involved the BTSC community. Without DropTheHammer’s Big Board, we thought that a collaborative big board would be a way to fill the void that his big board left.
Ryland B. later approached me in the comment section of that same article, saying that he would be willing to help put the big board together and contribute analysis. We began the board ourselves, but we left it open to BTSC members who wanted to contribute as well. A couple weeks in, one of BTSC’s site moderators, SNW, said that he would gather each player’s stats and consensus ranking. Not long after, a couple more BTSC members, Itz JustNoah and Necksnation, jumped in and helped Ryland and I contribute analysis.
It was the idea of Pittsblitz56, inspired by DropTheHammer, and created by BTSC members. We went through each position, ranking and analyzing 288 prospects, in the span of about three months. It was a lot of work, but we hope that everyone enjoyed each article and took the time to read the analysis. I would like to thank Pittsblitz56 for getting this all started. I would also like to thank Ryland for the many hours of work he put into the board through analysis, editing, and many other things behind the scenes. I also want to thank SNW, Itz JustNoah, and Necksnation for jumping in and helping us. We couldn’t have done it without you guys!
If you would like a printable version of my top 300 rankings, which are the same rankings used for this board, you may click here to access that. It can be helpful on draft night in terms of knowing who the best available prospects are and who the most realistic options for the Steelers are.
Ryland is also working on some boards that will come out throughout the draft, highlighting the top 50 players remaining after each night. Be sure to check those out as well.
As a reminder, the stats and consensus ranking were compiled by Pittsblitz56 and SNW (using CBS Sports, Drafttek, ESPN, Mock Draft Database, and Tankathon), and the analysis is a collaboration of Ryland, myself, Itz JustNoah, and Necksnation.
Let’s get to the final top 100!
1. Penei Sewell — OT — Oregon
#58, Jr, 6’6”, 330 lbs
Consensus ranking: 2 (2, 2, 3, 2, 2)
2020 season stats: Opted out
2019 season stats: (14 games)
steelerfan11: It has been a long time since there has been a tackle prospect as good as Sewell. He can play on either side of the line, but I fully expect him to be put at left tackle from day one for whichever team that drafts him. He has good lateral mobility and is very nimble on his feet. He is comfortable in his stance and gets good leverage as a run-blocker. Hand usage, power, and pad level are all spectacular as well, making him a generational talent at the most important position outside of quarterback. He is a high-level run blocker and pass protector, and there are no major flaws in his game.
2. Trevor Lawrence — QB — Clemson
#16, Jr, 6’6”, 220 lbs
2020 season stats: 3,153 passing yards, 24 passing touchdowns, 5 interceptions, 203 rushing yards, 8 rushing touchdowns (10 games)
Consensus Ranking: 1
Ryland B: Ever since his brilliant freshman campaign at Clemson in 2018, Lawrence has been seen as a top-tier NFL prospect, with it being all but a guarantee he’ll be selected first overall in the 2021 NFL Draft. Lawrence is an accurate passer with a NFL-caliber arm, and has always been a solid decision-maker with the football. He also has great size and is a surprisingly good runner. Lawrence only lost two games in his college career, always playing well and showing good leadership skills. There’s some minor concerns here and there with Lawrence, but overall he’s the most NFL-ready quarterback to enter the draft in years. The Steelers won’t be landing him, but whichever team does (*cough* Jacksonville) will be getting a good one.
3. Zach Wilson — QB — BYU
#1, Jr, 6’3”, 210 lbs
Consensus Ranking: 8
2020 season stats: 3,692 passing yards, 33 passing touchdowns, 3 interceptions, 254 rushing yards, 10 rushing touchdowns (12 games)
steelerfan11: Strength of schedule is something that will be an issue for some, but Wilson balled out this season for BYU. His arm is not on the same level as a Lawrence or Fields, but it is definitely above average, and his accuracy is as good as anyone’s. He can deliver it from a slew of different arm angles, but his best attribute may be his mobility in the pocket and decisiveness as a runner. Wilson is a gamer who has everything you want in a franchise quarterback, which is why he will be a top five pick come April.
4. Justin Fields — QB — Ohio State
#1, Jr, 6’3”, 228 lbs
Consensus Ranking: 4
2020 season stats: 2,100 passing yards, 22 passing touchdowns, 6 interceptions, 383 rushing yards, 5 rushing touchdowns (8 games)
Ryland B: Justin Fields spent his freshman year of college backing up Jake Fromm at Georgia before transferring to Ohio State for his sophomore and junior years, where his career would blossom. Following a breakout 2019 season, Fields played rather inconsistently in a COVID-19 shortened 2020, often struggling when facing a rush and making some questionable decisions. However, a near flawless showing against Trevor Lawrence’s Clemson Tigers in the College Football Semifinal restored the faith in Fields as a draft prospect. He has decent size, is very athletic and a good runner, and has an absolute cannon for an arm. Despite having some pocket awareness problems, Fields is very mobile and can throw well on the run. He’s a very accurate passer overall, rarely turning the ball over, although there is some room to grow regarding his decision making. Fields isn’t a perfect prospect, but he’s a solid #3 quarterback in this draft class behind Trevor Lawrence and Zach Wilson. Fields is a top 5 talent in my opinion, but it will be interesting to see if he falls on draft night.
5. Ja’Marr Chase — WR — LSU
#7, Jr, 6’0”, 208 lbs
Consensus ranking: 5 (5, 3, 5, 5, 6)
2020 season stats: Opted out
2019 season stats: 84 receptions, 1,780 receiving yards, 20 receiving touchdowns (14 games)
steelerfan11: Chase was almost as unstoppable in 2019 as DeVonta Smith was in 2020. Chase is an explosive player with a decent sized frame to win a good amount of contested catches. Hands are not an issue, and his ability to high point the ball is among the best in this class. He has good speed and runs solid routes, and his willingness as a blocker will not go unnoticed by scouts. There are a lot of other accolades I could give Chase, but since he is not falling anywhere near 24, let’s move on.
6. DeVonta Smith — WR — Alabama
#6, Sr, 6’1”, 175 lbs
Consensus ranking: 7 (8, 11, 4, 8, 5)
2020 season stats: 117 receptions, 1,856 receiving yards, 23 receiving touchdowns (13 games)
Ryland B: Many have Ja’Marr Chase ranked as the best wide receiver in the 2021 draft class, but DeVonta Smith’s incredible senior season at Alabama made him my #1. Despite lacking ideal size and athleticism for the position, Smith made the absolute best of what he had during his time at Alabama. And it’s fair to say his hard work paid off as Smith won the Hesiman trophy his Senior year thanks to an absolutely incredible season (if you haven’t looked at his 2020 stats listed above yet, I’d recommend you do so). Probably the best route-runner in the class, Smith has a great release, makes good cuts, and has a good feel for the little things that make a receiver great, such as finding the soft spot in a zone, faking out defenders at the top of his routes, and sharp footwork. He isn’t the greatest athlete, but still has good speed and is a natural catcher of the ball, which makes him a threat in contested catch scenarios despite his diminutive frame. It’s worth noting Smith suffered a finger injury in the National Championship Game (a game in which he had 215 yards in the first half), which could be something to keep an eye on as hand injuries can be dangerous for receivers, although it doesn’t look like it will be a big deal. Smith was as close as you can get to unstoppable in 2020, and while lack of size may be a concern at the NFL level, he’s a complete prospect who is deserving of a top-10 pick in the upcoming draft.
7. Micah Parsons — LB — Penn State
#11, Jr, 6’3”, 245 lbs
Consensus ranking: 10 (6, 14, 4, 12, 12)
2020 season stats: Opted out
2019 season stats: Tackles 109, TFL 14, Sacks 5, FF 4, FR 1, PD 5, Int 0, (13 games)
Necksnation: Parsons would likely be the consensus top defensive player in the draft if not for character issues. Like many top prospects, he opted out of the 2020 college season, but his stock actually rose when Penn State’s defense suffered in his absence. His pro day numbers solidified his status as one of the most athletic defenders in the draft. As a blitzer, Parsons demonstrates great instincts and the ability to shed blocks and make tackles. His coverage skills could use some refining, but it’s nothing he can’t handle, and it’s certainly not a weakness of his. Parsons’ ceiling and his athleticism make him the top linebacker in this class, and he has a good chance of going inside the top 15.
8. Kyle Pitts — TE — Florida
#84, Jr, 6’6”, 246 lbs
Consensus ranking: 9 (10, 9, 6, 11, 11)
2020 season stats: 43 receptions, 770 receiving yards, 12 receiving TD’s, (8 games)
Ryland B: “Matchup nightmare” is really the only way to describe Kyle Pitts. At 6’5” and around 240 lbs, with the athleticism of a wide receiver, Pitts made a living at Florida making defensive backs and linebackers look silly. He has incredible hands, great body control, and a large catch radius, and his ability to track and catch a football through contact make him the best at contested catch scenarios in this class. Besides his knack for winning 50/50 balls, Pitts can also win with pure athleticism, as he has good speed and is surprisingly a good route-runner for a player of his size. His lanky frame makes it so he won’t be the quickest, but he has impressive long speed and can easily burn linebackers. He even lined up on the outside at times and held his own, bullying corners. He’s impressive after the catch, as well. The one problem with Pitts is that he isn’t the greatest blocker, and while he’s fairly strong, has good size, and shows good effort, he isn’t that effective and will purely be a receiving threat on the next level. Still, a team that isn’t looking for a blocking tight end will get some incredible value out of Pitts, and he could be a top-10 pick in the upcoming draft.
9. Rashawn Slater — OT — Northwestern
#70, Sr, 6’4’’, 315 lbs
Consensus ranking: 12 (11, 14, 8, 13, 12)
2019 season stats: (11 games)
Itz JustNoah: The first thing you notice when looking at Slater’s tape is his hand technique. On every play, his hands are exactly where they need to be to win those physical battles in the trenches. His footwork is smooth and he plays with a great level of physicality. As a Junior, he had to go up against Ohio State and Chase Young. He was 1-on-1 with Young 12 different times over the course of the game and he won every single time. His size and length could potentially limit him against stronger edge rushers but I doubt it will affect him much. Personally I think he will be best as a tackle but he does have the versatility to play inside if need be.
10. Christian Darrisaw — OT — Virginia Tech
#77, Jr, 6’5’’, 314 lbs
Consensus ranking: 20 (14, 18, 24, 16, 16)
2020 season stats: (9 games)
Itz JustNoah: Darrisaw is, in my eyes, the next best tackle behind Sewell. Slater’s tape is great but Darrisaw is just so strong and his physicality is unmatched. He’s extremely powerful as a runblocker and he holds his block well in pass protection. He uses raw strength to move defenders out of the way with ease to create holes for runners and a clean pocket for whoever’s throwing the ball. He has the potential to be a franchise left tackle for whoever drafts him. I would be elated if he falls to the Steelers at 24 and Colbert would be foolish to not take him.
11. Jaylen Waddle — WR — Alabama
#17, Jr., 5’10”, 182 lbs
Consensus ranking: 10 (9, 8, 10, 12, 13)
2020 season stats: 28 receptions, 591 receiving yards, 4 receiving touchdowns (6 games)
steelerfan11: I love guys who bring a special speed element to the game. With Waddle, it is not just straight-line speed. He is quick in and out of cuts, and he is extremely versatile, occasionally being used on jet sweeps and as a dangerous kick returner. There is the concern with injury, as Waddle has had some issues staying healthy, but the reward far outweighs the risk of taking him inside the top ten in my opinion. This guy is on another level when healthy.
12. Jaycee Horn — CB — South Carolina
#7, Jr, 6’1”, 205 lbs
Consensus ranking: 17 (30, 12, 15, 16, 14)
2020 season stats: Tackles 16, TFL 1, PD 6, Int 2, (7 games)
Itz JustNoah: As far as coverage goes, Horn is as good as it gets. He reacts well in man, he recovers quickly, he ran a 4.39 so he’s not gonna get burned over top and his ball skills are right up there with the other top guys. One of the things you notice when watching him is that he won’t get beat right off the line. He watches the opponent’s hips, not their eyes, so he won’t get beat by any “fancy footwork”. Horn does have a tackling problem and he tends to hold more than you would like. If he can clean up his holding problem I think he can be a very, very successful outside corner with the speed and athletic ability to also cover the slot. I like Horn a good bit but he’s not as technical or just plain talented as Surtain. So while I think it’s a great pick if he does fall, I would not want any sort of trade up for him.
13. Caleb Farley — CB — Virginia Tech
#3, Jr, 6’2”, 207 lbs
Consensus ranking: 17 (11, 31, 12, 13, 18)
2020 season stats: Opted out
2019 season stats: Tackles 20, PD 12, Int 4, (11 games)
Necksnation: Farley opted out of the 2020 college season and recently underwent a back procedure, causing his stock to fall, but he has all the tools to be a lockdown corner in the NFL. His combination of size, length, speed, and instincts make him one of the most naturally gifted players in the class. Farley’s 2019 film is fantastic, and if he hadn’t opted out I wouldn’t be surprised if he was the consensus top corner in the class. He excels in press coverage, and is able to stay on a receiver step by step for an extended period of time. His back issues are a legitimate reason for concern, but if he can stay healthy, he should be able to succeed at the next level.
14. Azeez Ojulari — Edge — Georgia
#13, So, 6’3”, 240 lbs
Consensus ranking: 39 (58, 30, 58, 22, 25)
2020 season stats: Tackles 31, TFL 12.5, Sacks 9.5, PD 2, FF 4, FR 1 (10 games)
Itz JustNoah: Ojulari has great athleticism and technique. He uses his hands well, he’s quick and he’s got a great bend that helps him stay upright. He has average size for an edge rusher so he could use a bit more strength but his speed off the line has helped him be successful without the ideal size. His major flaw comes as a run defender. When he’s forced outside and has to set the edge, he doesn’t have his burst off the line so he isn’t able to get by blockers. He’s not polished, but he’s got a high ceiling that makes him well worthy of being taken in the first round. He excelled in Kirby Smart’s 3-4 defense at Georgia and I think that’s where he will fit best in the NFL.
15. Kwity Paye — Edge — Michigan
#19, Sr, 6’4”, 272 lbs
Consensus ranking: 15 (8, 20, 18, 14, 15)
2020 season stats: Tackles 16, TFL 4.0, Sacks 2.0 (4 games)
2019 season stats: Tackles 50, TFL 12.5, Sacks 6.5 (12 games)
Itz JustNoah: Paye is built like a semi-truck. He was incredible against the run in college due to his great feet and hands, and I don’t doubt that that will translate to the NFL. However, he relies too much on his athleticism as a pass rusher and that is something that has to be fixed if he wants to be successful as a true edge. If he can develop as a pass rusher on the technical side of things, he has the potential to be extremely good. Paye is ineffective when dropping back into coverage so a 4-3 scheme, where he can play on the edge while not being asked to drop back in coverage, would work very well.
16. Trey Lance — QB — North Dakota State
#5, So, 6’4”, 226 lbs
Consensus ranking: 15
2020 season stats: 149 passing yards, 2 passing touchdowns, 1 interception, 143 rushing yards, 2 rushing touchdowns, (1 game)
2019 season stats: 192 completions, 66.9 completion percentage, 2786 yards, 28 passing TDs, 0 INTs, 169 carries, 1100 yards, (16 games)
steelerfan11: Lance played one game in 2020, and it did not go as well as many expected. Overthrowing receivers and making the wrong reads were a common thing, but he did enough in the second half to lead his team to victory. My biggest issues with him are touch and delivery speed. His delivery looked very slow to me on the tape I have seen of him, and his eyes stay on his intended receiver too long, allowing the defender to break on the ball for an interception. Footwork was inconsistent as well. That said, his size, arm, and athleticism make him an intriguing option in the middle of the first round. He is boom or bust at this point.
17. Patrick Surtain II — CB — Alabama
#2, Jr, 6’2”, 202 lbs
Consensus ranking: 10 (15, 8, 10, 9, 9)
2020 season stats: Tackles 37, TFL 3.5, FR 0, PD 9, Int 1, (13 games)
Necksnation: Surtain will likely be the top corner off the board in April, and for good reason. In coverage, he is able to follow his man step for step and is adept at forcing incompletions. When he does allow a completion, he quickly and effectively tackles the ballcarrier to prevent any yards after the catch. Surtain is best when he’s playing man, but he’s more than capable of playing zone if he needs to. He does have a tendency to commit pass interference penalties, but he improved in that aspect from 2019 to 2020, so it shouldn’t be a big issue in the NFL. His only other weakness is that he occasionally gets beat downfield, but he does a good job of catching up to the receiver and putting himself in a position where he can still make a play on the ball. Surtain is the only cornerback in the class who I’d use a top 10 pick on, and I wouldn’t be surprised to see the Broncos or Cowboys select him with either of their top picks.
18. Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah — LB — Notre Dame
#6, Sr, 6’1”, 215 lbs
Consensus ranking: 21 (23, 29, 14, 19, 18)
2020 season stats: Tackles 62, TFL 11, Sacks 1.5, FF 3, FR 2, PD 3, Int 1, (12 games)
steelerfan11: While not the biggest linebacker in the world, Owusu-Koramoah has serious range in coverage and outstanding versatility. His lack of size occasionally bites him when trying to tackle a well-built running back or tight end, but the burst he displays when rushing the passer makes up for it. His versatility also allows him to play safety in certain packages, and he has had no trouble covering receivers and tight ends out of the slot. Adding some weight would only help him, but he will be a valuable piece for a defense that can use his versatility correctly.
19. Mac Jones — QB — Alabama
#10, Junior, 6’ 3”, 214 lbs
Consensus Ranking – 41
2020 season stats: 4,500 passing yards, 41 passing touchdowns, 4 interceptions, 14 rushing yards, 1 rushing touchdown (13 games)
Ryland B: Mac Jones is a bit of a departure from his successors at Alabama, Jalen Hurts and Tua Tagovailoa. While Hurts and Tagovailoa were athletic, high-upside prospects with some concerns regarding their overall accuracy and ability to go through progressions, Jones is more of the opposite. He’s a pocket passer with decent athleticism, while his greatest strength is his accuracy and ability to distribute the football. Jones has a fairly strong arm and throws a pretty deep ball, while also going through his progressions well and delivering the ball on time. He’s not a good runner, or even very mobile for that matter, but he can recognize when to run and can gain a first down with his legs every now and then. Surrounded by superior talent and excellent play-calling, Jones put up some great numbers at Alabama this season. He has a fairly high floor, but doesn’t have the highest ceiling, and could be picked anywhere from the top 5 to the end of the first.
20. Alijah Vera-Tucker — G/T — USC
Jr, #75, 6’4”, 315 lbs
Consensus ranking: 24 (19, 32, 21, 29, 19)
2020 season stats: (6 games)
steelerfan11: Vera-Tucker was asked to move to left tackle and fill the void that Austin Jackson left. He wasn’t too bad, but he is much better suited at guard. He has quick hands and does a good job of landing his punches, and his body control is superb. His mobility is very good for an interior lineman as well, showing the ability to consistently get to the second level of the defense. He also displays a good pad level in the run game. Overall, Vera-Tucker brings a nice balance of upside and NFL readiness, and he could be gone by the time we get to pick 15.
21. Joseph Ossai — EDGE — Texas
#46, Jr, 6’4”, 253 lbs
Consensus ranking: 34 (34, 36, 29, 38, 34)
2020 season stats: (0 games)
2019 season stats: Tackles 90, 14.5 TFL ,6 Sacks , Int 2, PD 3, FF 2 (13 games)
Itz JustNoah: I absolutely love Ossai. He has pretty much everything you want in a 3-4 OLB. He’s very quick off the line, his balance is phenomenal, he uses his hands extremely well and he has a wide range of pass rush moves. The stats may not show it but he is almost always in the backfield whether it be a run or a pass. Unlike a lot of the other edge rushers in this class, Ossai is very versatile. He can easily drop back into zone coverage or even play man against some tight ends or running backs, so he is the perfect 3-4 edge. I see a lot of TJ Watt in him because of his quickness, balance and his knack for creating turnovers. I’ve seen him fall out of the first round in some mocks but I think that any team that uses a 3-4 should take him before any other edge rusher.
22. Samuel Cosmi — OT — Texas
Jr, #52, 6’7”, 309 lbs
Consensus ranking: 43 (32, 24, 84, 25, 28)
2020 season stats: (8 games)
steelerfan11: Cosmi is not a sure thing at tackle, but I liked what I saw from him in both 2019 and 2020 when he was at left tackle. Generally, raw tackles will start out at right tackle if they play at all their rookie season, but I think Cosmi’s natural fit is on the left side. He depends on his superb athleticism too often, but all of Cosmi’s technical issues are fixable. When he leaves his chest exposed and a defender can land a punch, he loses balance but can usually save himself with his length. His kick-slide needs to become smoother, but that will come with improved footwork and hip angles. His pad level also needs to be lower on a more consistent basis, but that got much better in 2020. Cosmi does a good job of getting to the second level of the defense as a run-blocker, and he has the length and mobility to be a dominant pass blocker. If he can add a good 15 pounds to his frame, he could develop into one of the top blindside protectors in the game.
23. Pat Freiermuth — TE — Penn State
#87, Jr, 6’5”, 250 lbs
Consensus ranking: 39 (26, 47, 41, 39, 41)
2020 season stats: 23 receptions, 310 receiving yards, 1 receiving TD’s, (4 games)
steelerfan11: Freiermuth is one of my favorite prospects in this class because of his style of play. Every year people try to compare the top tight ends in the class to Rob Gronkowski, but I actually find it fair to compare Freiermuth to him. I expect Freiermuth to get closer to the 260 pound range once he is in the NFL, helping him hold up against stronger NFL athletes. He does a good job of boxing out defenders and getting in good position to make catches, and he has the soft hands that you want in a tight end. I realize that he is still very raw and undeveloped as a blocker, but I believe that he is fully capable of becoming one of the top blocking tight ends in the league. It just may not come in year one. If he has fully recovered from that shoulder injury that ended his 2020 season early, he will be able to contribute immediately as a legitimate red zone threat. They say that a good blocking tight end is an extension of the offensive line, so if the value does not present itself at center or tackle, maybe the Steelers would consider the local tight end instead.
24. Najee Harris — RB — Alabama
#22, Senior, 6’ 2”, 230 lbs
2020 season stats: 1,466 rushing yards, 26 rushing touchdowns, 5.8 yards per carry (YPC), 43 receptions, 425 receiving yards, 4 receiving touchdowns.
Ryland B.: Considered a top recruit coming out of high school, Najee Harris underwhelmed in his first few years at Alabama, but slowly improved each season to become the best running back in his draft class by his senior year. Harris has the size of a NFL running back, but he also has the power and athleticism to succeed at the next level. He is a patient runner with good vision, and can consistently make something out of nothing if the play breaks down. He ends runs with power, and is hard to bring down once he gets going, even unleashing an impressive hurdling ability at times. He isn’t the fastest, but has enough speed and burst to succeed at the NFL level — although he won’t be a home-run hitter. As a receiver, Harris showed some good hands and yards after catch ability in 2020. If there’s one concern, it’s mileage, as Harris had over 800 touches during his 4 years at Alabama. He hasn’t shown any durability concerns, but it’s certainly something to be aware of due to the short shelf life on NFL running backs. Overall, Harris is the most complete and NFL-ready back in the draft class, having shown athleticism, talent, and production over his successful college career.
25. Travis Etienne — RB — Clemson
#9, Senior, 5’ 10”, 205 lbs
2020 season stats: 914 rushing yards, 14 rushing touchdowns, 5.4 YPC, 48 receptions, 588 receiving yards, 2 receiving touchdowns
Ryland B.: Etienne made the right choice returning to school for 2020, but ended up having a down year statistically, failing to crack a thousand rushing yards for the first time since his freshman season in 2017. He did improve as a pass-catcher, totaling a career high in receiving yards and better hands overall. As a runner, Etienne is a speedster, one of the fastest in this class. His smaller frame is a concern, but he hasn’t had any major injury issues and always plays bigger than he is, finishing runs with some power and giving his all every play. He doesn’t have the greatest vision, and will sometimes try to push runs too far outside, but his vision definitely improved in 2020. Etienne’s agility isn’t overly impressive, but his speed certainly gives him an advantage in avoiding defenders. Etienne isn’t a complete running back just yet, but he has a solid foundation of tools and his impressive speed gives him incredible upside as an NFL back.
26. Zaven Collins — LB — Tulsa
#23, Jr, 6’4” 260 lbs
Consensus ranking: 35 (28, 75, 23, 25, 22)
2020 season stats: Tackles 53, TFL 11.5, Sacks 4, FF 1, FR 1, PD 2, Int 4, (8 games)
steelerfan11: Collins has old-school size, but his fluidity in coverage is better than a lot of 230 pound linebackers in this class. He has decent range in coverage, but that is not his biggest strength. He was expected to run in the 4.6 range at his pro day, and he ran a little slower than that at 4.67. It was not a shocker to many people, but it does show that he may want to consider shedding a couple pounds if he wants to improve his range in coverage. However, his other numbers were impressive for a man his size, recording a 35 inch vertical and 122 inch broad jump. He will occasionally take a bad tackling angle and fail to bring the opponent down, but he does a good job of realizing gaps and filling them quickly. He has a few minor issues to fix, but he should still be able to contribute in year one. He should be off the board by the time we get to pick 40.
27. Christian Barmore — DL — Alabama
#58, So, 6’5”, 310 lbs
Consensus ranking: 29 (26, 49, 30, 21, 20)
2020 season stats: Tackles 37, TFL 9.5, Sacks 8, FF 3, PD 5, (12 games)
Itz JustNoah: Barmore has great size even for his position. He has all the right technique that you want from an interior lineman. His strong upper body helps him get in the backfield with ease and he has plenty of strength to help against the run. He’s much more refined than Nixon and I think that a team like the Raiders or possibly the Vikings that are ready to compete now and need a defensive tackle would work best. He can fit in a 3-4 and a 4-3 as long as playing on the interior. I would not be opposed to the Steelers taking him at 24 to add some youth to the defense (especially since Alualu didn’t return) but the offensive line is definitely a bigger need if the top tier guys are still there.
28. Kelvin Joseph — CB — Kentucky
#1, Jr, 6’1”, 192 lbs
Consensus ranking: 73 (NA, 111, 46, 69, 66)
2020 season stats: Tackles 25, TFL .5, PD 5, Int 4, (9 games)
Ryland B.: A smart, fluid mover in zone, Joseph had a sneaky solid season in 2020 for Kentucky. I watched his tape against Alabama, and he more than held his own against DeVonta Smith, who was the best receiver and route runner in college football last year. Joseph’s not the quickest, but he still has a good athletic profile to match up with NFL receivers. Joseph’s tackling is by far the worst part of his game, but overall he’s a corner with the instincts and athletic ability to succeed in the NFL.
29. Nico Collins — WR — Michigan
#1, Sr., 6’4” 215 lbs
Consensus ranking: 125 (138, 157, 43, 161, NA)
2020 season stats: Opted out
2019 season stats: 37 receptions, 729 receiving yards, 7 receiving TD
steelerfan11: Collins opted out of the 2020 season for Michigan, and his absence was quite evident. Collins did not have a great quarterback throwing him the ball during his time in Ann Arbor, but he bailed Shea Patterson out many times down the field in 2019. For a guy at that size, he actually runs decent routes and gets in and out of his cuts pretty quickly. His ball skills are tremendous, and he has good speed. If he would have had good quarterback play last year and decided to play this season, we may be talking about him as a top 15-20 pick. I still think that he is deserving of first round consideration simply based off on talent, but it is likely that he falls to day two.
30. Trey Smith — G — Tennessee
Sr, #73, 6’6”, 330 lbs
Consensus ranking: 47 (28, 39, 70, 48, 50)
2020 season stats: (10 games)
steelerfan11: Smith played left tackle in 2017 for the Volunteers before having issues with blood clots in his lungs in 2018. The former five-star recruit was able to get the issue resolved in time to play in 2019, but he moved inside to guard, which turned out to be the right move. Smith was much more dominant at guard and became one of the best run-blocking guards in the country while holding his own as a pass protector. In 2020, he was not quite as quick on his feet, and he struggled to win the battle for leverage. However, I like his game as a whole, and I believe he has a chance to be an absolutely dominant run-blocking guard.
31. Rondale Moore — WR — Purdue
#4, So., 5’9” 180 lbs
Consensus ranking: 32 (17, 20, 58, 29, 34)
2020 season stats: 35 receptions, 270 receiving yards, 0 receiving TD (3 games)
Ryland B.: Rondale Moore is an interesting prospect, as most of his first-round hype is based off of his incredible freshman season — back in 2018. That year Moore had over 100 catches and 1,200 yards to go along with his 12 touchdowns, making him a surefire first round pick when he would eventually enter the draft. However, a torn ACL at the beginning of his sophomore campaign didn’t help his draft plans, and then a decision to opt-out of the 2020 season due to COVID-19 concerns essentially made Moore a one-year wonder. But when he’s on the field, there is a lot to like about his game. Moore is very fast and elusive, and is a monster after the catch. There are some concerns about his smaller frame, as Moore isn’t suited for contested catches and struggles against physical corners, although he has good hands. Moore is a boom-or-bust prospect entering this year’s draft, but if he can be the player he was in 2018, the team that drafted him will be quite happy that they did so.
32. Creed Humphrey — C — Oklahoma
Jr, #56, 6’5”, 320 lbs
Consensus ranking: 58 (96, 40, 51, 44, 61)
2020 season stats: (11 games)
Ryland B.: There were questions about Creed Humphrey’s athleticism entering the 2021 draft cycle, but he silenced the doubters with a 10/10 RAS score in 2021, making him one of the most athletic centers ever tested. But his technique is just as impressive. A former wrestler, he plays with good functional strength and excellent leverage. He’s a proven leader with a great football IQ as well. Being left-handed might cause some issues, but that shouldn’t drop him on many boards (could it raise him on Miami’s?). Humphrey has really cemented himself as the top center in this class, and could here his name called as early as the first round.
33. Aaron Robinson — CB — UCF
#31, Sr, 5’11”, 193 lbs
Consensus ranking: 76 (NA, 108, 64, 68, 63)
2020 season stats: Tackles 41, TFL 1, FF 1, PD 7, Int 0, (9 games)
steelerfan11: Robinson is yet another scheme versatile corner who does his best work in man coverage. The dude is just a baller no matter where he is lined up. He can reroute receivers at the line when he is lined up on the perimeter, and he has the quickness and agility to cover receivers coming out of the slot. While he is not the biggest corner in the world, he has good functional strength and seems to be well-built. Robinson actually transferred from Alabama, and I cannot help but wonder what his draft stock would be if he would have stayed. Now, he may not have seen the opportunities he wanted at Alabama, but his tape this season would have made him a surefire first round pick if his production came at Alabama instead of UCF.
34. Javonte Williams —RB — North Carolina
#25, Junior, 5’ 10”, 220 lbs
2020 season stats: 1,140 rushing yards, 19 rushing touchdowns, 7.3 YPC, 25 receptions, 305 receiving yards, 3 receiving touchdowns
Ryland B.: I’ve seen some debates online over the past month or so arguing that Williams is the second-best running back in this class over Travis Etienne — and while I’m not ready to go that far yet, Williams’ incredible 2020 season certainly puts him in the discussion. He’s a running back that screams “Pittsburgh Steeler”, as he’s an underclassmen, runs with power and an attitude, and produced well in college. If he gets a good SPARQ score you might as well pencil him in as the Steelers’ second round pick. In a way, I see Javonte Williams as Benny Snell 2.0, someone with the powerful rushing style and contact balance the Steelers liked in Snell, but paired with good speed and burst to make him a complete back, something that Snell certainly lacks. Williams isn’t the fastest in this class, but he’s an excellent power back with enough speed to be a starter in the NFL. He’s definitely someone to keep an eye on as the draft gets nearer.
35. Jaelan Phillips — EDGE — Miami
#15, Jr, 6’5”, 266 lbs
Consensus ranking: 30 (40, 47, 17, 24, 24)
2020 season stats: Tackles 45, TFL 15.5, Sacks 8 (10 games)
Ryland B.: I hadn’t watched a ton of Phillips until I started analyzing him for this board, but I came away very impressed. He’s a plus athlete with good size, which I had known before, but he seemed to be more technically sound than most think he is. What really stood out to me is how violent of a pass-rusher Phillips is. His hand usage is strong and choppy, his motor is nonstop, and he’s a very disruptive, hard hitter. He’s solid against the run as well. Phillips can still be inconsistent and play too high at times, but he has all of the tools to succeed and should just continue to improve. The only red flag is his concussion issues, which unfortunately, could be quite the issue.
36. Kadarius Toney — WR — Florida
#1, Sr., 6’0”, 193 lbs
Consensus ranking: 51 (119, 54, 23, 29, 28)
2020 season stats: 70 receptions, 984 receiving yards, 10 receiving TD (11 games)
Ryland B.: Toney’s agility and shiftiness are on another level. A ton of his highlights were simple wide receiver screens where Florida would throw a short pass to Toney and let him create the rest of the yardage. He reminds me a bit of Diontae Johnson, as he’s a quicker-than-fast receiver who is incredibly dangerous after the catch, although Toney has stronger hands. He isn’t much of a deep threat and doesn’t have the greatest speed, but he’s fast enough to succeed on the NFL level. On a side note, I doubt he’ll end up in the black and gold, but if he does, he’s the perfect fit for a Matt Canada/Ben Roethlisberger offense: he has good hands and excels with short passes, sweeps, and motions.
37. Asante Samuel, Jr. — CB — Florida State
#26, Jr, 5’10”, 184 lbs
Consensus ranking: 36 (26, 24, 45, 44, 42)
2020 season stats: Tackles 31, TFL 1, FF 1, FR 2, PD 6, Int 3, (8 games)
Necksnation: The son of a four-time Pro Bowler, Asante Samuel Jr. has been rising on draft boards and has the potential to be a high quality starter in the NFL. Samuel is best in man, and he defends the run well. Although he’s somewhat undersized, Samuel projects as an outside corner in the NFL who can also play in the slot. Samuel doesn’t have great ball skills, but he did register three interceptions in 2020, so he seems to be improving in that regard. The Steelers have reportedly met with Samuel, but I wouldn’t want him selected in the first two rounds.
38. Greg Newsome — CB — Northwestern
#2, Jr, 6’1”, 190 lbs
Consensus ranking: 27 (NA, 25, 29, 29, 24)
2020 season stats: Tackles 12, FR 1, PD 10, Int 1, (6 games)
Necksnation: Although his tape was somewhat underwhelming, Newsome has the athleticism to succeed at the next level. His physicality and aggressiveness are two of his best traits, although they do make him susceptible to penalties. In addition, he has very good ball skills and open field tackling. Newsome only registered one interception in his time at Northwestern, but in 2020, he had seven pass breakups over three games. Newsome is raw, but his upside is high, which has made his stock rise over the past few months. I wouldn’t be surprised if he hears his name called in the first round, and he could be as high as the third cornerback off the board.
39. Walker Little — OT — Stanford
#72, Sr, 6’7”, 313 lbs
Consensus ranking: 88 (120, 87, 85, 81, 66)
2020 season stats: (0 games)
2019 season stats: (1 games)
steelerfan11: Before Walker Little opted out of the 2020 season, I thought that he had a chance of being a top 15 pick. He has all the traits that you want in a blindside pass-blocker. The former five-star recruit was a very fluid mover, and his ability to mirror well in pass protection made him look the part of a franchise tackle. Hand usage was good, and he was very good instinctively. The only problem is that we have not seen him play in two years. Little had a knee injury at the beginning of the 2019 season and then opted out this season. I really would like to see how well he moves and performs post-injury, and that will be difficult to do considering that there is not a combine to evaluate him at either. I absolutely love the upside that Little brings, and he could be the steal of the draft, but he is anything but a sure thing. I must say that the more I watch of him from 2018, the more I would welcome the idea of the Steelers grabbing him if he is available on day two.
40. Davis Mills — QB — Stanford
#15, Sr, 6’4”, 225 lbs
Consensus ranking: 107 (62, 185, NA, 99, 80)
2020 season stats: 1,508 passing yards, 7 passing touchdowns, 3 interceptions, 37 rushing yards, 3 rushing touchdowns (5 games)
steelerfan11: Mills was getting absolutely no hype two months ago, but people have begun to take notice of his talent. Mills shocked scouts when he ran a 4.58 in the 40 at his pro day, but what was more impressive was the accuracy he displayed in the rain, especially on deep throws. There were several games where Mills turned the ball over a lot, but he did not let the turnovers phase him. He generally came up clutch when his team needed a big play, and he showed good poise in the pocket for a quarterback who is inexperienced. He only started 11 games at the collegiate level, but the upside is a high-level NFL passer who can occasionally make plays with his feet. He has a very good chance of being taken inside the top 50 picks.
41. Daviyon Nixon — DL — Iowa
#54, So, 6’3”, 305 lbs
Consensus ranking: 43 (NA, 27, 61, 42, 43)
2020 season stats: Tackles 45, TFL 13.5, Sacks 5.5, FF 1, (8 games)
Itz JustNoah: In a relatively weak class for defensive lineman, Nixon is a bright spot. He’s not completely pro ready but he shows plenty of potential. He has excellent hands and athletic ability. Despite having 5.5 sacks (which is not bad for an interior lineman) he didn’t overly impress me as a pass rusher but his power as a run stopper is incredible. He has the ideal size and physical tools to be a starting defensive tackle, he just has to learn proper technique as a pass rusher to be really successful. I don’t think he’s a first round talent yet, but if a team wants to take a chance on him the upside is high.
42. Elijah Moore — WR — Ole Miss
#8, Jr., 5’9”, 184 lbs
Consensus ranking: 54 (NA, 56, 36, 68, 54)
2020 season stats: 86 receptions, 1193 receiving yards, 8 receiving TD (8 games)
Ryland B.: I hadn’t watched Elijah Moore at all until looking at film for this board, but I came away very impressed. He’s very quick and has solid speed, and runs good routes. He was very productive in college as well, and although he ran a lot of short routes, mainly bubble screens and curls, he was really successful when he got the chance to run vertically. I think he’ll translate quite well into the NFL as a starting slot receiver.
43. Carlos Basham — EDGE — Wake Forest
#9, Sr, 6’5”, 285 lbs
Consensus ranking: 50 (56, 62, 41, 48, 42)
2020 season stats: Tackles 28, TFL 5.5, Sacks 5, PD 1, FF 1 (7 games)
Ryland B.: Basham is a powerful edge rusher who has more of a clear fit as a 4-3 defensive end than anyone I’ve profiled so far for this board. He’s not a bad athlete per se, but he lacks the pure agility and bend of some of the others on this list, and his array of pass-rush moves isn’t the strongest. Still, Basham has good strength, plays with good discipline, and has a solid all-around game. He may not be an overly dynamic athlete, but Basham still made his impact at Wake Forest with some big plays. Hell be a good second round pick as he can start right away but probably not a great fit in Pittsburgh.
44. Jamin Davis — LB — Kentucky
#44, Jr, 6’4”, 234 lbs
Consensus ranking: 91 (44, 193, 36, 90, 94)
2020 season stats: Tackles 102, TFL 4, Sacks 2.5, FF 1, FR 1, PD 8, Int 5, (10 games)
Ryland B.: Davis has long been a popular sleeper in the draft community, and he’s starting to get mentioned as a potential first round pick in mock drafts. He’s a fantastic athlete with solid size, who is impressive in coverage and a solid run defender. He’s a willing tackler, but he can have a hard time making his way through traffic and not getting caught in blocks. Against the pass, he does show impressive ball skills and the athletic ability to stick with his assignment. He’s a good linebacker who will just have to improve his strength and instincts at the next level.
45. Trevon Moehrig — S — TCU
#7, Jr, 6’2”, 202 lbs
Consensus ranking: 23 (25, 17, 15, 30, 28)
2020 season stats: Tackles 47, Sacks 0, Int 2, PD 11, FF 0, FR 0, (10 games)
steelerfan11: Moehrig is the best safety in this class, but not by much. He has some versatility, but he will most likely settle in as a free safety in the NFL. His physicality is what I like most about him. He does not shy away from contact and isn’t afraid to hit hard. He has solid ball skills and good instincts, but his tackling is inconsistent. It seems as if sometimes he will go for the big blow rather than simply wrapping up the ball carrier. Moehrig will likely be a starting free safety in the NFL, but I would not take him until day two.
46. Tyson Campbell — CB — Georgia
#3, Jr, 6’2”, 185 lbs
Consensus ranking: 48 (31, 47, 55, 54, 52)
2020 season stats: Tackles 29, TFL 2.5, PD 6, Int 1, (10 games)
Ryland B.: Campbell is a good athlete who is still figuring out the corner position. He has good size and is physical in man coverage, with the speed to match up with top receivers. He’s a smooth mover with good quickness and he flips his hips well, but he can be a slow processor and still end up a step behind receivers. Campbell is an incredibly raw corner with all of the tools to succeed, but he will need to be developed by whichever NFL team drafts him.
47. Rashod Bateman — WR — Minnesota
#0, Jr., 6’2”, 210 lb
Consensus ranking: 22 (24, 26, 19, 19, 20)
2020 season stats: 36 receptions, 472 receiving yards, 2 receiving TD (5 games)
Ryland B.: Bateman’s COVID-19 shortened 2020 wasn’t anything to write home about, but if you turn on his 2019 tape you’ll see what the hype was all about. Bateman made a living off of contested catches, showing off his incredible hands and concentration, even pulling some passes in with only one hand. Concerns about his speed are a little overblown, as he has enough to gain separation on the NFL level, and has quick feet and runs good routes. Contested catch specialists often have a hard time transitioning to the NFL level, but I think that Bateman’s solid floor of skills put him in the late first/early second round conversation.
48. Jabril Cox — LB — LSU
#19, Sr, 6’4”, 231 lbs
Consensus ranking: 62 (85, 54, 39, 60, 71)
2020 season stats: Tackles 58, TFL 6.5, Sacks 1, FF 0, FR 1, Int 3, (11 games)
Ryland B.: Cox is quickly becoming one of my favorite linebackers in this draft. He’s built nearly the same as Jamin Davis, and similarly is an excellent athlete who is rock solid in coverage. He has the same big play gene as the Kentucky linebacker as well. But where Davis struggles in navigating traffic, Cox is a heat-seeking missile. He flies across the field and through contact to make tackles, and while he’s still developing as a run defender, he shows all of the required tools and effort. He’ll be excellent value in the second or third round.
49. Landon Dickerson — C — Alabama
Sr, #69, 6’6’’, 325 lbs
Consensus ranking: 67 (76, 59, 93, 56, 52)
2020 season stats: (12 games)
Ryland B.: If it wasn’t for Dickerson’s extensive injury history, I’d have a much higher grade on him. Dickerson is a technically sound, smart center with good size and strength who plays very aggressively. He’s a proven winner and leader as well. His strength and physicality shine in his run blocking, and he is good in pass protection thanks to his football IQ and technical ability. Besides the injuries, Dickerson’s weaknesses involve his overall athleticism, as it isn’t bad but far from elite, and he isn’t the most mobile. He’s a strong player though and shined at the SEC level, so there isn’t a whole lot to worry about there. If Dickerson can stay healthy he’ll be a very good NFL center. If you’re interested in reading more in-depth analysis on him, check out K.T. Smith’s extensive breakdown on Dickerson HERE.
50. Richie Grant — S — UCF
#27, Sr, 6’0”, 199 lbs
Consensus ranking: 84 (NA, 28, 186, 56, 66)
2020 season stats: Tackles 72, Sacks 1, Int 3, PD 0, FF 2, FR 2, (9 games)
Ryland B.: Grant is a top-tier coverage safety who really stood out in the Senior Bowl. He’s quick and instinctive in coverage with excellent ball skills. As a free safety his play recognition and range isn’t the greatest, but far from a concern. He isn’t the biggest, but still plays very physically and is a surprisingly good tackler. Grant projects best as a safety in the NFL, but he was fairly versatile in college, and I think that in the right scheme he could be a solid slot cornerback.
51. Gregory Rousseau — EDGE — Miami
#15, So, 6’7”, 265 lbs
Consensus ranking: 15 (16, 12, 16, 16, 16)
2020 season stats: (0 games)
2019 season stats: Tackles 54, TFL 19.5, Sacks 15.5 (13 games)
Ryland B.: From a draft perspective, I really wish that Rousseau hadn’t opted out of the 2020 season. He put up 15.5 sacks — as a redshirt freshman — in 2019, and was seen by most as a surefire top 10 pick entering the following season. But after opting out the following season he’s dropped in most rankings. The problem? Despite Rousseau’s impressive production, he’s still very raw, and with only one true season under his belt he’ll be a massive risk for whichever team gets him. He has all of the physical traits you could want in an edge rusher with great size and athleticism, but his game is still fairly underdeveloped. Rousseau has the talent to be a first round pick, but it will be interesting to see if he can live up to that billing.
52. Dillon Radunz — OT — North Dakota State
Sr, #75, 6’6’’, 299 lbs
Consensus ranking: 64 (67, 84, 56, 57, 55)
2020 season stats: (1 games)
2019 season stats: (16 games)
Ryland B.: Radunz has flown under the radar for a while, but began to pop up on draft radar as his teammate Trey Lance began to get more hype — and Radunz showed up on the tape. He’s not a freak athlete like Cosmi or Darrisaw, but he’s still a fairly good one with good mobility and strength. He’s a little undersized for the position, an issue I think will pop up more in the NFL than it did at the FCS level. I think he has the frame to bulk up, though. He’s solid in pass protection but shined best in run blocking, showing excellent power and drive. Radunz had a strong Senior Bowl and showed the versatility to play at guard as well. Radunz’s smaller size and school are legitimate concerns, but as for now the NDSU linemen has established himself as a fringe first round candidate at offensive tackle.
53. Amon-Ra St. Brown — WR — USC
#8, Jr., 6’1” 195 lbs
Consensus ranking: 62 (58, 68, NA, 61, 60)
2020 season stats: 41 receptions, 478 receiving yards, 7 receiving TD (6 games)
steelerfan11: St. Brown has the bloodlines and the talent that warrant a first round selection, and he has a skill set to complement that. He is very quick and clean in and out of his cuts, he runs decent routes, has good body control and sideline awareness, has solid speed, and displays reliable hands week in and week out. Former USC receiver Juju Smith-Schuster is a reasonable comparison here as well, but I honestly think St. Brown’s game is a little more complete and a little better in terms of overall upside. While he isn’t dominant in any one area, he is very good in almost every category. If he isn’t a WR1 for some team, he will most certainly be one of the best #2 receivers in the league. He is a high floor prospect with a reasonably high ceiling.
54. Jayson Oweh — EDGE — Penn State
#28, So, 6’5”, 253 lbs
Consensus ranking: 47 (80, 50, 35, 35, 33)
2020 season stats: Tackles 63, TFL 13.5, Sacks 0, PD 2, FF 2 (7 games)
steelerfan11: Oweh has as much potential as anyone in the class, but he lacked production in 2020. It is not every day that you see a 250+ pound athlete run the 40 in under 4.4 seconds, but Oweh can do it. However, he has struggled to translate his God-given athletic gifts to the football field. Some scouting reports that you read will say that he is limited to 4-3 schemes, but I believe the exact opposite. I think that he will only have success as a 3-4 outside linebacker. If you watch his tape, you will see that he lacks quickness out of his stance when lined up as a down lineman with his hand in the dirt, but he was a totally different player when he was a stand-up linebacker. He had a quicker first step, and he was more effective using his speed. If a team is willing to be patient with Oweh and not expect much from him in year one, he will have a chance to blossom into one of the top 3-4 outside linebackers in the league. For more perspective on Oweh, here is an interesting scouting report on him from Big Blue View.
55. Terrace Marshall — WR — LSU
#6, Jr., 6’3”, 200 lbs
Consensus ranking: 41 (65, 35, 35, 36, 35)
2020 season stats: 48 receptions, 731 receiving yards, 10 receiving TD (7 games)
Ryland B.: Part of a highly productive LSU offense in 2019, Marshall still managed to shine despite being in the same wide receiver room as Justin Jefferson and Ja’Marr Chase. Both Jefferson and Chase didn’t play in 2020, and Marshall was able to capitalize on the opportunity, putting up good numbers before opting out part way through the season. Marshall has really great size and good vertical speed and ball skills, although his hands aren’t the most consistent. Marshall is a good route-runner as well, although there is room to grow regarding his quickness and agility. Having been overlooked early on in his career due to the talented offense he played on, Marshall could be steal in the upcoming draft.
56. Teven Jenkins — OT — Oklahoma State
Sr, #73, 6’6’’, 320 lbs
Consensus ranking: 61 (109, 96, 33, 37, 32)
2020 season stats: (12 games)
Ryland B.: Another name that comes up a lot at #24 in mock drafts, Jenkins is a powerful run-blocker at the tackle position who is still improving at the pass-blocking aspect of his position. I wasn’t all that impressed at first but he grew on me the more I watched. Jenkins really has that mauler mentality and plays with great power and drive. Put a guy in front of him and Jenkins will move him out of the way. This overaggressive style of play can get Jenkins in trouble at times, especially when paired with his lack of athleticism and technique. Overall I like Jenkins, as tough, aggressive linemen are something the Steelers really need more of on their roster. Still, there are a lot of issues that are hard to ignore, and Jenkins certainly needs to develop.
57. Jevon Holland — S/CB — Oregon
#8, Jr, 6’1”, 201 lbs
Consensus ranking: 57 (52, 59, 59, 54, 61)
2020 season stats: (0 games)
2019 season stats: Tackles 66, Sacks 0, Int 4, PD 4, FF 0, FR 0, (14 games)
steelerfan11: Holland has the best versatility of any safety in this class. He can play both safety spots as well as nickel cornerback, and I expect the team that drafts him to use him sporadically at each of those positions. Holland opted out of the 2020 season, but he was the leader of the Oregon defense in 2019, accounting for four interceptions and over sixty tackles. Holland has ideal speed and length to excel in man coverage, and he did exactly that in college. He has loose hips and moves fluidly when dropping into zone, but there are a few instances where he would drop too deep or not deep enough. He became much more consistent in 2019 in that department while still displaying his athletic traits and versatility. He was projected to be a top 15 pick before opting out, but his stock has fallen to a probable day two pick. He could be one of the true steals of the draft if he is still on the board after the top 50 picks.
58. Patrick Jones — EDGE — Pittsburgh
#91, Sr, 6’5”, 260 lbs
Consensus ranking: 55 (31, 67, 49, 67, 60)
2020 season stats: Tackles 44, TFL 13, Sacks 9 (11 games)
Ryland B.: Jones is an athletic pass-rusher with an insanely quick first step. He has solid size, and while he’s still a little raw overall there aren’t any major concerns when rushing the passer or defending the run. As a 4-3 defensive end, Jones is a very solid prospect who will just need some time to grow into his role in the NFL. However, as a 3-4 outside linebacker, a position Jones would play in the Steelers’s system (an actual possibility as the team met with him at the Senior Bowl), there would be a lot more to work on. Jones has the ideal size and athletic profile but is severely lacking when it comes to anything besides rushing the passer from a defensive end stance.
59. Alex Leatherwood — OT — Alabama
Sr, #70, 6’6”, 312 lbs
Consensus ranking: 47 (45, 38, NA, 33, 30)
2020 season stats: (13 games)
ItzJustNoah: Leatherwood is a mammoth of a man. He is listed at 312, I think he’s probably a bit more than that but not in a bad way. He’s very balanced, providing power as a pass protector and a run blocker. He’s very strong and he easily keeps his balance against stronger guys. I was very impressed, when looking at his tape, by his footwork especially for a guy his size. Despite that though, his mobility is not very fluid and speed rushers will beat him.
60. Wyatt Davis — G — Ohio State
Jr, #52, 6’4”, 315 lbs
Consensus ranking: 33 (NA, NA, NA, 29, 37)
2020 season stats: (8 games)
Ryland B.: There’s a lot to like about Wyatt Davis. He’s a powerful, athletic guard who has been a starter for a while on one of the better lines in college football. He’s a mauler who can move defenders in the run game, and he’s pretty solid in pass protection. Davis isn’t the most polished player at his position, as he can get pushed back sometimes and can struggle staying on a block. However, he’s an experienced, high-upside prospect overall who is still a safe pick in the early rounds.
61. Quinn Meinerz — C/G — UW-Whitewater
Sr, #77, 6’3”, 320 lbs
Consensus ranking: 157 (NA, 130, 176, 165, NA)
2020 season stats: (0 games)
2019 season stats: (15 games)
steelerfan11: Meinerz played his entire collegiate career at guard until his senior season. After an offseason of, well, interesting training, he made the move to center and played at a really high level for Wisconsin-Whitewater. He was still somewhat of an unknown commodity up until a few weeks ago when he shined at the Senior Bowl. He consistently won in one-on-one drills and showed his toughness and attitude as a blocker. His personality, style of play, and hair all make Ryan Jensen a logical comparison. I’m not saying that he will become one of the top two or three centers in football and go on to win a super bowl like Jensen, but he does not seem to be as raw a prospect as the initial scouting reports were saying. The NFL is quite a leap from Division III college football, but Meinerz has the toughness and moxie to be a really good interior lineman down the road.
62. Liam Eichenberg — OT, — Notre Dame
Sr, #74, 6’6”, 302 lbs
Consensus ranking: 63 (105, 77, 46, 45, 43)
2020 season stats: (12 games)
Ryland B.: The highest rated member of a very good Notre Dame offensive line last year, Eichenberg has been projected all the way from the first to the third round in some mock drafts. A very good run blocker, Eichenberg plays tough while showing decent strength. In pass protection, his lack of athleticism shows, but he is still solid overall. Speed rushers give him fits though and cause him to lunge too often. Eichenberg is a good high floor/low ceiling prospect who will probably be a starter at the NFL level, although I’m not sure if he has Pro Bowl potential.
63. Shaun Wade — CB/S — Ohio State
#24, Jr, 6’1”, 195 lbs
Consensus ranking: 100 (144, 66, 108, 98, 86)
2020 season stats: Tackles 35, TFL 1, PD 1, Int 2, (8 games)
steelerfan11: Wade had a fantastic year in 2019 when Jeff Okudah and Damon Arnette were manning the outside, but Wade struggled mightily when he was asked to be a boundary corner in 2020. Wade made a few decent plays, but he struggled for the most part. However, literally whenever Ohio State moved him to the slot for a few plays, he was his old self and was blanketing receivers. Ty Fryfogle of Indiana absolutely torched Wade all day when he was playing on the outside, but on the few occasions he was put in the slot, he did well against Whop Philyor and the other Indiana receivers. As a prospect, I like Wade’s athleticism and upside, and I think the 2020 season was just a fluke. Some think that he will move to safety, but I honestly think playing the nickel is what he does best. If he can be an inside-only corner for a team, he could be a potential pro-bowler down the line.
64. Trey Hill — C/G — Georgia
Jr, #55, 6’4”, 330 lbs
Consensus ranking: 113 (148, 123, NA, 88, 91)
2020 season stats: (8 games)
steelerfan11: If you ever read my comments about my hopes for the Steelers this offseason, Trey Hill has probably been mentioned at some point in time. Hill just turned 21 and still has a lot of room to grow as a prospect, but he could start from day one if the Steelers needed him to be. He gets good leverage, uses his hands well, and maintains a low pad level. He has excellent power and is an absolute mauler in the run game, and I believe his ability to get to the second level of the defense is way better than what your average scouting report on him will say. While he has sufficient mobility and has shown the ability to pull as either a center or guard, he isn’t super light on his feet. If he remains at center, he may want to drop a couple pounds, but I would love to see Hill next to Kevin Dotson on that offensive line. I believe that Hill is one of the most underrated players in this draft. If he is still there on day three, some team is getting an absolute steal.
65. D’Wayne Eskridge — WR — Western Michigan
#1, Sr., 5’9” 190 lbs
Consensus ranking: 109 (NA, 89, 105, 134, NA)
2020 season stats: 34 receptions, 784 receiving yards, 8 receiving TD (5 games)
Ryland B: Eskridge’s draft stock rose meteorically during the Senior Bowl, going from a mid-round grade to a viable late first-rounder to many. Despite playing at a lower level of competition, Eskridge showed he could put DB’s at any level on skates during his impressive string of practices at the all-star game. Eskridge runs very snappy routes, making sharp cuts, and showing off great acceleration — all while being one of the fastest receivers in this class. He’s a little small for an NFL wideout, but he still has good hands and toughness, along with a defensive background. He was a starting cornerback at Western Michigan for much of his time there, and played fairly well. Overall, there’s a lot to like about Eskridge’s game, and while a good Senior Bowl may have taken aways his status as a late-round gem, a deep wide receiver class could push him into the second round. He’s a MAC guy, too, which means the Steelers will definitely have him on their radar.
66. Tylan Wallace — WR — Oklahoma State
#2, Sr., 6’0”, 190 lbs
Consensus ranking: 53 (62, 50, 60, 72, 67)
2020 season stats: 59 receptions, 922 receiving yards, 6 receiving TD (13 games)
Ryland B.: Tylan Wallace has been consistently productive as a three-year starter at Oklahoma State, racking up nearly 3,500 receiving yards in his career as a contested-catch specialist. Wallace doesn’t have great size or speed, and his lanky frame limits his agility and quickness. However, he’s a good football player, period. Wallace has really great hands and tracks the ball well, and despite not being the biggest guy, he wins a lot of jump balls. He’s a scrappy, physical receiver who is an excellent blocker and tough to bring down after the catch, fighting hard for yardage every time. He also sells out for the ball when it’s in the air, fighting through the defender and contorting his body to find a way to make the catch. Wallace was an excellent college receiver, but his athletic profile may hinder his transition to the NFL.
67. Jalen Mayfield — OT — Michigan
So, #73, 6’5”, 320 lbs
Consensus ranking: 32 (29, 44, 26, 32, 29)
2020 season stats: (2 games)
steelerfan11: Another example of Ed Warriner’s excellent coaching, Mayfield was very raw when arriving at Michigan, losing frequently to quicker edge rushers that had a quicker first step than he had and getting overpowered by more powerful pass rushers. After several years under good coaching, Mayfield has taken amazing strides in his game and has become much more refined. He knows how to move defenders in the run game, and his strong lower body helps him anchor well. His footwork is somewhat slow and sloppy at times, and I would like to see him get out of his stance a bit quicker, but Mayfield has a high floor due to his versatility to play both tackle and guard. His ceiling will likely depend on whether he can slide over to the left side in the NFL.
68. Brady Christiansen — OT — BYU
Jr, #67, 6’6’’, 300 lbs
Consensus ranking: (137, 195, NA, 112, NA)
2020 season stats: (12 games)
Ryland B.: Trusted with protecting top quarterback prospect Zach Wilson at BYU, Christiansen was excellent as a pass protector. He’s a smart, physical player with decent size and strength. He’s also a good run blocker who plays powerfully and with good technique. Where Christiansen is lacking is in his athleticism, as he’s not that mobile and had some trouble with agile, athletic pass-rushers. He also went on a mission trip while in college which makes him older than most of the prospects in this draft, which might have aided in his college success, as well as taking away a couple years from his NFL career. It’s worth noting he’s pretty popular with the folks at PFF, but who knows how those grades will translate at the next level. Christiansen doesn’t have a very high ceiling, but his floor is high enough to be a solid starter early on in his NFL career.
69. Jackson Carman — OT/OG — Clemson
Jr, #79, 6’5”, 335 lbs
Consensus ranking: 62 (37, 71, NA, 66, 74)
2020 season stats: (12 games)
steelerfan11: Carman may have the highest upside of any tackle after Penei Sewell, but inconsistency has been the story of his collegiate career. Carman was playing at about 345 pounds at Clemson, which allowed him to be an absolute mauler in the run game. That size became a double-edged sword, however, as he was often unable to win battles against speedy edge rushers one-on-one. His first step is slower than what you would like in a blindside protector, and his pad level could use a little work in the run game. He has every tool you could ever want, but I really think he needs to drop 10-15 pounds if he is going to reach that potential at tackle. If not, I think that a move to guard at the next level is inevitable (Note: Carman weighed 317 pounds at his pro day. Sounds like he wants to stay at tackle).
70. Dylan Moses — LB — Alabama
#32, Sr, 6’3”, 240 lbs
Consensus ranking: 59 (76, 48, 54, 62, 53)
2020 season stats: Tackles 80, TFL 22, Sacks 6.5, FF 1, FR 0, PD 4, Int 1, (13 games)
Necksnation: Once considered a potential top 10 pick, an underwhelming 2020 caused Moses to plummet on draft boards. He is an above average tackler who is very athletic, although it isn’t always evident in his film. Moses’ awareness is a reason for concern. In the film I watched, he was frequently getting fooled by read options, and it sometimes looked like he didn’t know where the ball was. His coverage skills could also use some work, as he only registered two interceptions and four pass breakups in his three seasons at Alabama. However, if he can return to his 2018 form, Moses has the potential to be a quality starter for an NFL team.
71. Eric Stokes — CB — Georgia
#27, Jr, 6’1”, 185 lbs
Consensus ranking: 58 (65, 70, 62, 48, 43)
2020 season stats: Tackles 20, Int 1, (9 games)
Ryland B.: Stokes’ blazing 40 time (4.25 seconds) likely moved him up on some draft boards, but he’s not necessarily a first round talent. Similarly to his teammate Tyson Campbell, Stokes has some incredible measurables, with fantastic size and speed. He’s also a physical corner in both coverage and run support. However, Stokes is more of a straight line athlete than Campbell, as while he is fast he doesn’t move the smoothest or possess the greatest agility, although it is far from a major concern. Stokes’ ball skills are a plus, but he is still raw and not NFL-ready quite yet. However, Stokes has all of the tools and effort needed to succeed at the next level.
72. Anthony Schwartz — WR — Auburn
#1, Jr., 6’0”, 179
Consensus ranking: 117 (141, 92, NA, 118, NA)
2020 season stats: 54 receptions, 636 receiving yards, 3 receiving TD (10 games)
steelerfan11: Schwartz is one of my favorite prospects in this entire class. There is fast, and then there is freakishly fast. Tyreek Hill fast. Schwartz honestly disappointed me with his 4.26 40 time at his pro day. Listed at only 179 pounds, Schwartz could probably afford to add ten pounds and not lose his world class speed. Schwartz has pretty good hands for a speed guy, and he is not afraid to work the middle of the field. He can line up on the outside or in the slot, although his best fit in the NFL will likely be the slot. I wish that he was a more willing blocker and had a little more shiftiness to his game, but the sky’s the limit for a guy with Schwartz’s speed.
73. Hunter Long — TE — Boston College
#80, Jr, 6’5”, 253 lbs
Consensus ranking: 90 (NA, 111, 49, 110, NA)
2020 season stats: 57 receptions, 685 receiving yards, 5 receiving TD’s, (11 games)
Ryland B.: Long was targeted a lot last year as a big part of Boston College’s offense, and responded well with some admirable production. He has good size and decent athleticism, although he lacks the athletic upside of some of the others in this class. As a receiver he has solid hands and speed, and while his routes aren’t anything special, they’re more than adequate for a man his size. Long is a great blocker, being both willing and effective, with good hand placement and drive. While Long is still above-average as a receiver, there are still some issues overall. He isn’t the most athletic and could have a tough time getting separation on the next level. His hands are good, but there are still some drops here and there, and while he made some tough catches, he failed to hold onto some passes you would expect a big, imposing tight end to come down with. He’s not much of a threat after the catch, either. Overall I’m not as big a fan of Long as some others are, but in a weak class he’s a solid third option. He could be a good #2 tight end for an NFL team, but I don’t think he has much starter upside.
74. Cameron McGrone — LB — Michigan
#44, Jr, 6’1”, 236 lbs
Consensus ranking: 88 (121, 69, NA, 83, 79)
2020 season stats: Tackles 26, TFL 2, Sacks 4.5, FF 1, FR 0, PD 1, Int 0, (5 games)
steelerfan11: Familiar with Devin Bush? McGrone has a similar profile but has a smaller sample size. He has the same size, speed, and blitzing ability that made Bush a top ten pick, but we did not see it week in and week out. However, much of that may have been because of Michigan’s inconsistent play as a unit. When Aidan Hutchinson went down with a season ending injury, Michigan’s defensive line struggled to get consistent pressure, which made Josh Ross’ And McGrone’s job more difficult. McGrone had an injury of his own in 2020, but he displayed amazing toughness and played through it. He is excellent in man coverage, but his ability to play zone coverage is an unknown at this point because of how rarely Michigan employed zone philosophies. If he reaches his full potential, he’s Devin Bush 2.0, but the Steelers already have the real Devin Bush. I expect them to find someone who would be more of a complement to Bush’s skill set.
75. Alim McNeill — DL — North Carolina State
#29, Jr, 6’2”, 320 lbs
Consensus ranking: 68 (NA, 63, NA, 75, 67)
2020 season stats: Tackles 26, TFL 4.5, Sacks 1, FF 1, FR 1, (11 games)
steelerfan11: McNeill does an excellent job of splitting the A-gap and applying pressure from the interior, but he will sometimes get upfield too quickly on running downs and become a non-factor against the run. It is rare for a 320 pound prospect to have issues with “overrunning” plays, but that is sometimes the case with McNeill. He has a quick first step out of his stance, and he maintains a good pad level, but I have concerns as to whether he can adjust the technical difficulties in his game. That said, he has enough intrigue as a penetrating 3-4 nose tackle to warrant a day two pick.
76. Pete Werner — LB — Ohio State
#20, Sr, 6’3”, 242 lbs
Consensus ranking: 112 (126, 121, 96, 106, NA)
2020 season stats: Tackles 54, TFL 2.5, Sacks 1, FF 2, FR 0, PD 1, Int 0, (8 games)
steelerfan11: I was not looking at Werner as a potential fit for the Steelers during the season simply because I did not know if he had the necessary athleticism, but he silenced doubters like me by recording a 4.58 40 and a 39.5 inch vertical. He is very good instinctually and plays a very smart version of football. His role increased in Ohio State’s defense despite the crowded linebacker room, and he was up to the task both in coverage and against the run. If Werner continues to improve in coverage, his size and athleticism will make him a valuable player as early as year one.
77. Milton Williams — DL — Louisiana Tech
#97, Jr, 6’4”, 278 lbs
Consensus ranking: 225 (NA, 292, NA, 157, NA)
2020 season stats: Tackles 44, TFL 10, Sacks 4.5, PD 1, FR 3, (10 games)
Ryland B.: Williams is an athletic prospect with a lot of upside, but questions regarding his size and strength will make him a risky pick in the upcoming draft. He has good mobility and has some nice pass-rush moves, and he’s a good tackler and run defender. He’s undersized though, and got pushed back more often than you’d like to see from an interior lineman. He rarely did much against double teams, too. On tape I did notice he got held a lot, which is a testament to his quickness and hand-usage. Williams will be an interesting late-round pick, but some major holes in his game may damper his otherwise fantastic upside.
78. Ronnie Perkins — EDGE — Oklahoma
#7, Jr, 6’4”, 248 lbs
Consensus ranking: 70 (NA, 98, NA, 59, 52)
2020 season stats: Tackles 24, TFL 10.5, Sacks 5.5, PD 0, FF 0, FR 0 (6 games)
Ryland B.: Perkins is a strong, aggressive EDGE with good athleticism. He has violent hands and a good collection of pass rush moves, although there is room to develop in that area. For someone listed at under 250 pounds, Perkins plays much bigger than he is and I can’t stress enough how impressive his strength is. He’s a good tackler and has all of the tools to be a good run defender, but hasn’t completely arrived there yet, with The Draft Network noting that he is “wildly undisciplined” when defending the run. A suspension at Oklahoma could be a red flag as well.
79. Joe Tryon —EDGE — Washington
#9, Jr, 6’5”, 262 lbs
Consensus ranking: 53 (65, 72, 31, 53, 46)
2020 season stats: (0 games)
2019 season stats: Tackles 61, TFL 14.5, Sacks 9, PD 2 (13 games)
Ryland B.: Tyron is a very athletic presence on the edge with good size and strength. He has impressive hand usage and some good pass-rush moves, and when paired with his speed and agility it can be quite the combination. Against the run Tyron is solid, but he can get pushed back a little more often that you’d like and isn’t the strongest tackler. It’s also worth noting that Tyron sat out the 2020 season, which might drop his draft stock a bit as 2019 was really his only good year in college.
80. Chazz Surratt — LB — North Carolina
#21, Sr, 6’2”, 225 lbs
Consensus ranking: 70 (81, 75, 47, 74, 73)
2020 season stats: Tackles 91, TFL 7.5, Sacks 6, FF 1, FR 1, PD 4, Int 1, (11 games)
Itz JustNoah: As a UNC fan, I had the pleasure of watching Surratt in a lot of games this year. His pro day numbers may not be the greatest but his athleticism is evident on tape. He’s always around the ball, he plays fast and he’s good against the pass, both in coverage and as a pass rusher. Surratt is relatively new to the position and he’s not very refined but his raw talent is undeniable and should easily make him at least a 3rd round pick if he doesn’t sneak into the 2nd. I wouldn’t mind if Pittsburgh wanted to take him but I would prefer we take Collins or Bolton before even thinking about Surratt.
81. Nick Bolton — ILB — Missouri
#32, Jr, 6’0”, 232 lbs
Consensus ranking: 37 (50, 31, 32, 36, 38)
2020 season stats: Tackles 95, TFL 16, Sacks 4, FF 0, FR 1, PD 5, Int 0, (10 games)
Ryland B.: Built like Devin Bush, Bolton has a skillset similar to that of a slightly more athletic Vince Williams. He doesn’t have sideline-to-sideline range, but he has tremendous short-area explosiveness, and is a tough, physical tackler. He’s a smart player who is decent in zone coverage, but his athletic limitations show up when in man coverage. I think he could be a great interior blitzer, using his quickness to shoot gaps, but I didn’t see him do much of that at Missouri. I’m not as big a fan of his tape as others, as he often had a really hard time shedding blocks, which could be a big problem on the next level. Bolton is a solid prospect who could hear his name called anywhere from the first to third round in a linebacker class everyone has ranked differently.
82. Trey Sermon — RB — Ohio State
#8, Senior, 6’ 1”, 215 lbs
2020 season stats: 870 rushing yards, 4 rushing touchdowns, 7.5 YPC, 12 receptions, 95 receiving yards, 0 receiving touchdowns
Ryland B.: Sermon put himself on the map after a historic 2021 Big Ten Championship game, in which he had 331 rushing yards, followed by another dominating performance against Clemson in the CFP semifinal, in which he nearly had 200 rushing yards. Sermon is a big, powerful, explosive runner with lots of upside, even though he was in a limited role with Ohio State his senior year. We didn’t get to see much of him catching passes in college, but he has the ability and will look to improve on that in the NFL. I think Sermon’s injury issues are a little overblown, as an ACL injury and shoulder injury in separate years feel more like bad luck than injury-proneness. If anything, the ACL tear in 2019 would’ve been the hardest to come back from, but Sermon bounced back nicely in 2020. If the shoulder injury heals well there shouldn’t be much to worry about long-term. Sermon is an interesting prospect this draft, as he has lots of potential but never really seemed to develop all the way. He definitely has starter upside if he can learn the ropes in the NFL.
83. James Hudson — OT — Cincinnati
Jr, #55, 6’5”, 310 lbs
Consensus ranking: 111 (115, 180, 40, 110, NA)
2020 season stats: (10 games)
Ryland B.: Hudson is an athletic, raw prospect at offensive tackle coming out of Cincinnati. It’s easy to see why people like him so much on tape, as he’s big, powerful, and a fluid athlete. He plays with good aggressiveness and drive, his mobility really shines on some reps. There are some pretty glaring issues though, as Hudson’s technique can be all over the place. Sometimes he plays too high, and he can sometimes reach too much instead of mirroring. He seems to be a bit grabby at times too. Hudson certainly has the potential to fix all of these issues and be a very good starter in the NFL, but don’t expect him to start day one.
84. Dyami Brown — WR — North Carolina
#2, Jr., 6’0”, 185 lbs
Consensus ranking: 113 (108, 95, NA, 135, NA)
2020 season stats: 55 receptions, 1099 receiving yards, 8 receiving TD (11 games)
steelerfan11: Brown is very good at getting vertical. He has great ball skills and does a great job of tracking the ball downfield. He does have the occasional dropped pass, but he seemed to improve in that department as the season went along. What makes Brown an intriguing option in the middle rounds is that, unlike a lot of other receivers in this part of the draft, he gives tremendous effort as a blocker. He does a good job of creating separation late in his routes, and he isn’t afraid of working the middle of the field. There is certainly upside for Brown, and he should be able to step in and contribute immediately as a #3 option for an offense.
85. Kenneth Gainwell — RB — Memphis
#19, Sophomore, 5’11”, 191 lbs
2020 season stats: Opted out
2019 season stats: 1,459 rushing yards, 13 rushing touchdowns, 6.3 YPC, 51 receptions, 610 receiving yards, 3 receiving touchdowns
Ryland B.: A versatile athlete, Gainwell can play both out of the running back position and in the slot — and he was successful in both during his breakout 2019 season. Gainwell has good speed and is a shifty, elusive runner. He isn’t the biggest back out there, but is a surprisingly powerful rusher even though he might want to bulk up in the NFL. As a receiver, Gainwell has good hands and can run solid routes. His versatility and speed are great assets that will make him an exciting addition to any backfield in the next level, although scouts might want to take into account that he opted out of the 2021 season.
86. Levi Onwuzurike — DL — Washington
#95, Sr, 6’3”, 293 lbs
Consensus ranking: 45 (30, 83, 25, 44, 41)
2020 season stats: (0 games)
2019 season stats: Tackles 45, TFL 6, Sacks 2, FF 0, (13 games)
Ryland B.: A true disruptor up front, Onwuzurike may not have had the flashiest statistics at Washington, but he still made quite the impact. Onwuzurike has exceptional athleticism for someone his size and plays with a relentless motor, constantly making his way into opponents’ backfields. His power and hand usage are very impressive as well. Onwuzurike’s tape is impressive, but my main nitpick is that he seems to play too high at times, allowing him to get driven back and lose the leverage battle, missing some tackles as well. Overall though it isn’t a major issue and is definitely fixable. Onwuzurike may be a little undersized for a traditional 3-4, but if he bulks up a bit or gets placed in the right scheme, he has all of the tools to succeed at the NFL level.
87. Elijah Mitchell — RB — Louisiana
#15, Senior, 5’11”, 218 lbs
2020 season stats: 878 rushing yards, 8 rushing touchdowns, 6.2 YPC, 16 receptions, 153 receiving yards, 0 receiving touchdowns
steelerfan11: Mitchell was part of a good backfield at Louisiana, but he was the best runner of the guys in that backfield. He displays good awareness as a runner, and his balance through contact is impressive as well. He also has good short area quickness and decent footwork. While he did not have a ton of production as a receiver, he has shown excellent hands, which he displayed at the Senior Bowl. He slimmed down to 201 pounds to run a fast 40 at his pro day (ran a 4.38), but I expect him to regain that weight and play around 220 pounds in the NFL, which was about what he played at in college. He is a big sleeper in this class and will provide excellent value to a team that waits until day three to select a running back.
88. Patrick Johnson — EDGE — Tulane
#7, Sr, 6’3”, 255 lbs
Consensus ranking: 229 (NA, 244, NA, 214, NA)
2020 season stats: Tackles 39, TFL 14.5, Sacks 10, PD 2, FF 2, FR 0 (11 games)
steelerfan11: Johnson is a versatile pass rusher who lined up all over the place for Tulane. While he did not always play against elite competition, he was successful in every aspect of his game for Tulane, whether it was rushing the passer, dropping into coverage, or stopping the run. He has tremendous hand usage and a good repertoire of pass-rushing moves, but his biggest strength may be his ability to process information quickly as a run defender. He plays bigger than his 240 pound frame suggests, and that is evident based on how well he sets the edge in the run game. Johnson will be able to step in immediately as a 3rd or 4th outside linebacker in a 3-4 scheme and could fight for a starting job on a team as early as year two.
89. Michael Carter — RB — North Carolina
#8, Senior, 5’8”, 199 lbs
2020 season stats: 1,245 rushing yards, 9 rushing touchdowns, 8.0 YPC, 25 receptions, 267 receiving yards, 2 receiving touchdowns
Ryland B.: Carter was sharing a backfield with the talented Javonte Williams in 2020, but still managed to set career-highs in nearly every statistical category, rushing for over 1,200 yards with a whopping 8 yards per carry. Carter is compactly built with a fast, explosive running style. His 40 time wasn’t great but turn on the tape and you’ll see a much faster player on game days. He’s a smooth runner with excellent footwork who navigates through traffic well, often out-maneuvering defensive backs once he gets to the second level of the defense. He’s not the greatest at getting through contact, but shows good effort and has solid balance. He wasn’t used as a pass-catcher a lot at North Carolina, but he can catch, and has the potential to be a dangerous receiver out of the backfield in the NFL.
90. Robert Rochell — CB — Central Arkansas
#9, Sr, 6’0”, 195 lbs
Consensus ranking: 149 (NA, 188, 82, 177, NA)
2020 season stats: Tackles 27, TFL 1, FF 1, FR 1, PD 3, Int 0, (7 games)
Ryland B.: The small school could be a concern, but I really liked what I saw of Rochell’s tape. He’s an athletic, physical corner who is well-suited for the outside. He has good ball skills, is good in press coverage and playing off, and is solid in run support. However, he’s not the most agile or the smoothest mover, despite his impressive athletic profile. Ultimately, Rochell is the stereotypical outside press/man corner, but he does have more upside and versatility than most.
91. Ambry Thomas — CB — Michigan
#1, Sr, 6’0”, 183 lbs
Consensus ranking: 173 (120, 209, 166, 196, NA)
2019 season stats: Tackles 38, TFL 3, FR 2, PD 4, Int 3, (13 games)
steelerfan11: Thomas opted out of the 2020 season, but the 2019 tape was pretty impressive. Michigan played almost 100% man defense in Don Brown’s defense, but he has shown good fluidity and instincts, which would make one think that he could be solid in zone coverage as well. I expect him to pick up zone defense fairly quickly, but in year one, you will only want to see him on the field when your defense is playing man. When lined up on the outside for Michigan, he did a great job of disrupting receivers at the line of scrimmage and getting good position against receivers that were bigger than him. Quite honestly, the only time in his college career that he was dominated by a single player was DeVonta Smith in the Citrus Bowl last year, but Smith pretty much dominated every corner this past season. Looking back on it a year later, I doubt that very many teams are looking at that tape and saying that this guy has no shot in the NFL. If that were the case, a lot of corners the next couple years are going to be off teams’ boards as well. If Thomas can shake the rust off from sitting for a year, he could be a productive player as soon as year one.
92. Simi Fehoko — WR — Stanford
#13, Jr., 6’4”, 227 lbs
Consensus ranking: 423 (NA, 423, NA, NA, NA)
2020 season stats: 37 receptions, 574 receiving yards, 3 receptions TD (6 games)
steelerfan11: Have you ever heard of a guy named Chase Claypool? Fehoko isn’t quite as strong as Claypool, but there are some similarities. At 6’4 and over 225 pounds, he has the ability to win the contested catches in tight spaces. While a few drops do show up on tape, he generally displays strong hands needed to haul in the balls that are thrown into heavy traffic. I know that 40 times do not make or break a player, but that time is rather important when evaluating receivers and perimeter skill players. If there was a combine this year, his straight-line speed could probably get him in the 4.3s. He isn’t quite that fast when you see him on tape, but we said the same thing about Claypool after he ran his 4.42 last year. He also has some sneaky wiggle to his game. If he can clean up those occasional drops, he has a chance to be special.
93. Rhamondre Stevenson — RB — Oklahoma
#29, Senior, 6’0”, 246 lbs
2020 season stats: 665 rushing yards, 7 rushing touchdowns, 6.6 YPC, 18 receptions, 211 receiving yards, 0 receiving touchdowns
Ryland B.: I hadn’t seen much of Rhamondre Stevenson during his time in college, but when I turned on the tape my first thought was, Wow, he moves FAST for a big guy. For a nearly 250-pound running back, Stevenson looks like the fastest guy on the field at times (it’s worth noting he has recently lost around 20 lbs in preparation for the NFL). He’s big, fast, powerful, and explosive, with nearly all of the athletic potential you could ask for in an NFL running back. He doesn’t have the same level of footwork or shiftiness as some of the smaller backs in this class, but again, for the big runner that Stevenson is, it’s pretty impressive. Stevenson is one of my favorite prospects I’ve seen so far in this draft process, but some off the field issues damper the hype a bit. A failed drug test at Oklahoma, as well as some academic issues earlier in his career, could be a red flag on his NFL resume. However, if Stevenson can prove that it won’t be an issue in the future, there’s a lot to be excited about concerning his NFL career.
94. Jaylen Twyman — DL — Pittsburgh
#97, Jr, 6’2”, 290 lbs
Consensus ranking: 79 (43, 103, 89, 77, 85)
2020 season stats: (0 games)
2019 season stats: Tackles 57, TFL 12, Sacks 11, (13 games)
Ryland B.: An undersized defensive lineman, Twyman still impressed with some incredible production at Pitt. He’s a twitchy athlete with good mobility, and a well-polished pass rusher. Twyman’s size and strength are probably the biggest concerns, as he wasn’t the greatest run defender and often struggled against double teams. Twyman ended up opting out of the 2020 season, which many viewed as a mistake as there were still a lot of questions regarding his play. However, it seems as if Twyman used his time off wisely, bulking up a gaining strength to put on a show at the Pitt pro day (40 reps on the bench!). Twyman’s limitations may hurt his NFL career, but I believe that if he is put in the right system and can continue to gain strength, he could be very successful on the next level.
95. Paulson Adebo — CB — Stanford
#11, Sr, 6’1”, 192 lbs
Consensus ranking: 94 (110, 97, 73, 95, 96)
2020 season stats: Tackles 33, PD 10, Int 4, ( games)
Itz JustNoah: Adebo has the size, athleticism and length to be an elite level cornerback. He’s good in both man and zone coverage, he recognizes routes and is able to easily stay with receivers, his ball skills are great and his footwork is phenomenal. He does need to get his head around quicker on deeper routes and he might need to be a tad less physical at the next level but overall he’s a very underrated prospect that can be something special if he puts it all together. For teams that are in need of a corner but ready to win now, Adebo would be a great pick in the second or potentially third round.
96. Tommy Tremble — TE — Notre Dame
#24, Jr, 6’4’, 248 lbs
Consensus ranking: 233 (NA, 208, NA, 258, NA)
2020 season stats: 19 receptions, 218 receiving yards, 0 receiving TD’s, (12 games)
Ryland B.: I think that Tremble could be a steal in this draft, as he’s a good tight end who’s just been stuck behind other good tight ends on the Notre Dame depth chart. He’s an excellent athlete with good explosiveness and route-running abilities. He has good hands as well. Tremble is a really good blocker, but most of his success came at the second level, mainly working against linebackers. If he can make an impact against NFL defensive ends he could really elevate his game. Tremble’s good blocking foundation, paired with his athleticism, make him an intriguing prospect in the upcoming draft. However, much like his time at Notre Dame, I’m not sure if he’ll ever be more than a good second option.
97. Andre Cisco — CB — Syracuse
#7, Jr, 6’0”, 209 lbs
Consensus ranking: 59 (63, 44, 69, 59, 58)
2020 season stats: Tackles 11, Sacks 0, Int 1, PD 1, FF 0, FR 0, (2 games)
2019 season stats: Tackles 65, Sacks 0, Int 5, PD 10, FF 1, FR 1, (9 games)
Ryland B.: Cisco has some flaws in his game, but overall he’s a very good free safety prospect. He’s big and athletic, with some of the best ball skills and burst you’ll see out of any safety in this class — as evidenced by his insane interception numbers at Syracuse. But while Cisco is a defensive force in zone, in man coverage he’s more suspect. He’s fast but not particularly quick and got outmaneuvered on routes more often than I like to see. His boom or bust style of coverage led to some big plays being allowed as well. In run support, Cisco isn’t the greatest or most aggressive tackler. There’s some injury issues that will need to be addressed as well. I actually really like Cisco as a prospect, but there’s some big issues in his game that will need to be fixed for him to succeed in the NFL.
98. Jordan Smith — EDGE — UAB
#22, Jr, 6’7”, 255 lbs
Consensus ranking: 136 (NA, 150, 133, 126, NA)
2020 season stats: (0 games)
2019 season stats: Tackles 53, TFL 17.5, Sacks 10, PD 1, FF 4, FR 0 (14 games)
Ryland B.: Smith is an interesting prospect simply due to his impressive length at 6’7”. He has a lean, athletic build for a pass-rusher, and while it helps with his agility and overall athleticism, he would still ideally bulk up some more in the NFL. Smith plays with great effort and has excellent physical traits, but his game is still very raw all around. Smith has impressed in coverage though, and could be a versatile 3-4 OLB on the next level. There are red flags though, as Smith was involved in a credit card fraud scheme during his freshman year at Florida. His lack of top competition at UAB may lower his draft stock as well.
99. Talanoa Hufanga — S — USC
#15, Jr, 6’1”, 215 lbs
Consensus ranking: 102 (NA, 74, NA, 130, NA)
2020 season stats: Tackles 62, Sacks 3, Int 4, PD 1, FF 2, FR 0, (6 games)
steelerfan11: A couple members of BTSC actually brought this guy to my attention, and his tape did not disappoint. When you throw out his testing numbers and look solely at the tape, you see a guy who looks like a young Troy Polomalu. His physical, downhill style of play is fun to watch, as he strikes fear into opposing ball carriers. He can also blitz, cover, and create turnovers all at high levels. This guy is a true playmaking strong safety, but he is not extremely fluid in coverage at this point. He is also not as fast as he looks. He ran a 4.61 at his pro day, but the rest of his testing was not terrible, recording a 36 inch vertical and 6.87 3-cone drill. If he falls to day three, some team may be getting a steal.
100. Quincy Roche — CB — Miami
#9, Sr, 6’3”, 245 lbs
Consensus ranking: 102 (91, 87, 163, 78, 91)
2019 season stats: Tackles 49, TFL 19, Sacks 13, PD , FF 1, FR 2 (13 games)
steelerfan11: Roche’s quickness off the edge and excellent hand usage give him the upper hand against tackles that only have average athleticism. He lacks the strength to bull rush and is forced to rely on his quickness to beat the tackle around the edge. That lack of strength also hurts him as a run defender, as many tackles were able to push him around at will. However, he is a smart football player that overcomes his lack of strength with good technique. Although he will get pushed around at times, he is still solid against the run. His ceiling is not quite as high as some of the other rush linebackers in this class, but if he can add some weight to his frame, he will provide a team with value on all three downs.
To check out all 288 players we’ve profiled, you can click on the positional articles to read more about players outside the top 100 here (and read other’s analysis on them as well): Quarterbacks, Running Backs, Wide Receivers (Part 1), Wide Receivers (Part 2), Tight Ends, Interior Offensive Line, Offensive Tackles, Interior Defensive Line, Outside Linebackers/EDGE, Inside Linebackers, Cornerbacks, and Safeties.
Well, that’s all, folks! Thank you for taking the time to read each of our extensive articles over the past few months. Ryland will have more coming in the next few days, but this is the last you are hearing from me on the 2021 version of the big board.
This is your big board, BTSC. What are your final thoughts? Who do you think is too high or too low? Let us know your thoughts one final time in the comment section below! Thanks again, and Go Steelers!!!