The Chicago Bears already won the NFL draft by taking Justin Fields
Sports Seriously: In this week’s Sports Seriously episode Mackenzie Salmon and Analis Bailey react to the all the QB drama surrounding the NFL’s first round. Analis believes the Bears already won the draft with their big splash.
The 2021 NFL draft, i.e. the league’s 86th annual “Player Selection Meeting,” rolls on with the second and third rounds Friday night.
After an eventful Thursday in Cleveland, all 32 teams are scheduled to make picks on Day 2 – the Houston Texans, Kansas City Chiefs, Los Angeles Rams and Seattle Seahawks all sitting out Round 1 after previously making trades for established veterans. But they’ll enter the fray – though the Texans aren’t slotted until Round 3 – looking to strike gold at a time when the best teams tend fill out their rosters with less-acclaimed prospects.
Now, to the picks:
DRAFT TRACKER: Analysis on every pick in the first round
2021 NFL draft tracker: Second-round picks
Not a ton of production in terms of turning the ball over for the Bulldogs, but you can’t teach sub-4.4 speed or a willingness to tackle. Gives the Jags a nice nickel package with CJ Henderson and newly signed Shaquill Griffin.
The NYJ continue investing in assets to surround new QB Zach Wilson. After bolstering the O-line in Round 1 with OL Alijah Vera-Tucker, GM Joe Douglas gets the explosive receiver from Ole Miss. Moore can operate from the slot, take jet sweeps and turn a hitch into a score. He finished with 86 grabs for 1,193 yards and eight scores in eight games last year. This pick could cast doubt on the future of current slot receiver Jamison Crowder.
He averaged 7.3 yards per carry in 2020 and put the ball in the end zone 22 times. A physical runner who also blocks and catches (25 last year), his arrival means another timeshare as he replaces Phillip Lindsay as Melvin Gordon’s partner in crime.
Holland had nine INTs over the 2018 and ’19 seasons before opting out last year. He should upgrade Miami’s shaky back line, which isn’t on par with what should be a solid group of corners.
He’s recovering nicely from a torn ACL and should be ready to go for Week 1. Between ‘Bama and his time at Florida State, he’s played all five O-line positions but seems likely to settle at the interior in the NFL. Could be C Jason Kelce’s eventual successor.
He wrecked Ohio State in the CFP national championship game, flashing his ability to clog running lanes and get to the quarterback up the gut. A three-down disruptor who should bring needed athleticism to New England’s front. The Pats gave up two fourth-rounders for the second-round swap with Cincy.
Should settle in at right tackle and become another element (along with first-round QB Justin Fields) that helps Chicago’s shoddy offense help upholding its side of the deal in the Windy City. Bears fans should enjoy Jenkins’ play-to-the-echo-of-the-whistle mentality.
Atlanta ranked last against the pass in 2020, allowing 34 TD passes. Grant, who had 10 picks over the last three seasons, joins a new-look safety corps that said goodbye to Keanu Neal and Damontae Kazee in free agency while welcoming Duron Harmon and Erik Harris.
He can defend the run and penetrate on passing downs and should be willing to bite a few kneecaps for new coach Dan Campbell. He was an all-Pac-12 selection in 2019 before opting out last year. Detroit has now picked two linemen from the conference after going with Oregon OT Penei Sewell in Round 1.
Giants GM Dave Gettleman trades down again, adding a third-rounder in 2022, enabling Miami to get a new right tackle. Expect Eichenberg to guard southpaw QB Tua Tagovailoa’s blind side after this week’s trade of Ereck Flowers telegraphed a move of 2020 second-rounder Robert Hunt inside.
Last year’s Jim Thorpe Award winner, Moehrig has nice range, plays with good instincts, can cover and is willing to come up and make a hit. He should nicely complement 2019 first-round S Johnathan Abram, who’s more of a thumper in the box.
And Dallas begins repairing last year’s sieve-like pass defense, Joseph now paired outside with 2020 second-rounder Trevon Diggs. Joseph’s exceptional athleticism should serve him well as he adapts to the NFL. Joseph, who started his college career at LSU, had four INTs last year.
Massive at 6-7 and 313 pounds, he’s got all the talent in the world but suffered a torn ACL in 2019 and opted out last year. Projects as the successor to Jags LT Cam Robinson, who’s playing on the franchise tag in 2021. Walker should be a good long-term investment as Trevor Lawrence’s blind side sentinel.
A 6-5, 317-pounder, Cincinnati didn’t wait long to upgrade QB Joe Burrow’s protection after opting for WR Ja’Marr Chase instead of a left tackle Thursday. Carman protected Lawrence from the left side for Clemson and might get an opportunity to do the same for Burrow, whose rookie season was prematurely ended by a knee injury. If not, Carman could be the long-term right tackle or even a guard.
Another son of a former NFL star, Samuel the Younger is a more willing tackler than dad sometimes was. He can also generate turnovers and helps out the Bolts secondary after the losses of Rayshawn Jenkins and Casey Hayward. Samuel had three picks in eight games for the Seminoles in 2020, when he was an all-ACC selection.
Another all-ACC pick, the 6-5, 325-pounder should help facilitate the Niners’ ground game, which is truly the key to their offense. This O-line is getting a nice boost this spring after veteran C Alex Mack also signed.
Moore blazed an unofficial 4.29 40 at his pro day while posting 42½-inch vertical jump. He posted 114 catches and 14 TDs as a freshman in 2018 … but injuries, including to his hamstring, have kept him off the field quite a bit since. Small (5-7, 181) but very strong, he could be a dangerous weapon – also able to produce on jet sweeps or pitches – between veteran WRs DeAndre Hopkins and A.J. Green.
He led the SEC with 8½ sacks in 2020 and was so well respected that he was named a team captain as a freshman. Can man the edge in odd or even fronts. The Giants didn’t have a five-sack performance from any of their edge players in 2020.
The all-Big-12 performer stands 6-6 and 314 pounds and should plug in immediately at left tackle for the WFT. Cosmi may not have elite physical skills, but he is durable and can also play right tackle. The Football Team continues to build a nice roster even if a quarterback of the future will have to come in the future.
Cleveland trades up (and surrenders a third-rounder as part of its Round 2 flip with Carolina) to end JOK’s free fall. A 6-1, 221-pounder, Owusu-Koramoah compares himself to the Colts’ Darius Leonard and also doles out some thunderous hits. He can defend in space and cover large sectors of the field for a Browns defense that continues to add studs.
He took care of Trey Lance for the Bison and represents the Titans’ latest whack at right tackle after they let All-Pro Jack Conklin walk after the 2019 season and wasted a first-round pick on Isaiah Wilson last year. A left tackle in college, Radunz also provides a nice measure of versatility. Ryan Tannehill and Derrick Henry say thank you.
He’s coming off an Achilles injury but had 5½ sacks in eight games last year. If the Colts are lucky, Odeyingbo and first-rounder Kwity Paye could be the new Dwight Freeney-Robert Mathis combo for the 2020s.
The “Baby Gronk” nickname isn’t entirely accurate even though he wore No. 87 and has a similar gait. But Freiermuth should be a nice combo tight end for an offense that’s incrementally getting overhauled this offseason. He had 92 catches for 1,185 yards and 16 TDs in three seasons with the Nittany Lions.
Welcome to the draft, Seattle, which gave up its first-rounder in the Jamal Adams deal … and that’s OK given the Seahawks’ spotty record in Round 1 lately. Eskridge brings more athleticism to the passing game with his blazing speed, averaging 23.4 yards per catch over the past two seasons. At 5-9, 190 pounds, he’s more Tyler Lockett than DK Metcalf. Still, what about that offensive line, fellas?
Welcome to the draft, L.A., which gave up its first-rounder in the Jalen Ramsey deal. Atwell may only be 5-9 while hovering near 150 pounds, but his speed could bring another dimension to an offense that already added DeSean Jackson. An all-ACC selection in 2019 when he led the conference with 1,272 receiving yards, Atwell should use every ounce of QB Matthew Stafford’s arm strength.
58. Kansas City Chiefs (from Baltimore Ravens) –
59. Panthers (from Browns) –
60. New Orleans Saints –
61. Buffalo Bills –
62. Green Bay Packers –
63. Chiefs –
64. Tampa Bay Buccaneers –
2021 NFL draft tracker: Third-round picks
65. Jaguars –
66. Vikings (from Jets) –
68. Falcons –
69. Bengals –
70. Eagles –
71. Broncos –
72. Lions –
73. Panthers –
74. Washington (from 49ers) –
75. Cowboys –
76. Giants –
77. Chargers –
78. Vikings –
79. Raiders (from Cardinals) –
80. Raiders –
81. Dolphins –
82. Washington –
83. Panthers (from Bears) –
84. Cowboys (from Colts via Eagles) –
85. Titans –
86. Vikings (from Seahawks via Jets) –
87. Steelers –
88. Rams –
89. Panthers (from Browns) –
90. Vikings (from Ravens) –
91. Browns (from Saints) –
92. Packers –
93. Bills –
94. Ravens (from Chiefs) –
95. Buccaneers –
x-96. Patriots –
x-97. Chargers –
x-98. Saints –
x-99. Cowboys –
x-100. Titans –
x-101. Lions (from Rams) –
x-102. 49ers –
x-103. Rams –
x-104. Ravens –
x-105. Saints –
Follow USA TODAY Sports’ Nate Davis on Twitter @ByNateDavis.