It is of no surprise Trevor Lawrence is a unanimous choice to be the first overall pick in tonight’s 2021 NFL Draft in Cleveland.
In going through 11 mock drafts of the big-name draft analysts, Lawrence came up No. 1 in all 11. As for the other four Tigers who could be drafted over the next three days, they were all over the place.
The 11 major mock drafts consisted of the NFL Network’s Daniel Jeremiah, Buck Brooks, Charlie Casserly, Charles Davis and Peter Schrager, NFL.com’s Lance Zierlein and Chad Reuter, ESPN’s Mel Kiper Jr. and Todd McShay and CBS Sports’ Ryan Wilson and Pete Prisco.
Of the 11 mock drafts, six had running back Travis Etienne going in the first round. McShay had Etienne going the highest, at No. 22 to Buffalo, who he thinks could move up from No. 30 and grab Etienne before the Jets and Steelers possibly take him at No. 23 and No. 24.
Jeremiah and Schrager had the ACC’s all-time leading rusher going to the Jets at No. 23, while Kiper has him slotted for the Steelers at No. 24 in his final mock draft.
Casserly has the Bills staying put at No. 30 and Etienne falling to them there, while Prisco has Etienne going to Tampa at No. 32.
Etienne moved up in Kiper’s final mock draft, 10 places from where he thought he might fall last week.
As for wide receiver Amari Rodgers, left tackle Jackson Carman and wide receiver Cornell Powell, they are scattered throughout the draft, depending on who you read.
Kiper has Rodgers going in the second round with the No. 46 overall pick to the New England Patriots
“The Patriots’ pass-catchers were disappointing around Cam Newton last season, so let’s give projected new quarterback Justin Fields a weapon,” Kiper writes. “Rodgers is one of the top slot receivers in this class. He’s built like a running back and is stellar on jet sweeps and bubble screens. He can make defenders miss after the catch. Rodgers is the son of Ravens assistant coach Tee Martin.”
Jeremiah agrees with Kiper.
“I can see him go in the second, at worst he will go in the third round,” Jeremiah said following Clemson’s Pro Day last month.
Jeremiah compares Rodgers to current NFL wide receiver Randall Cobb, who has played in the league since 2011 when he was drafted by the Green Bay Packers in the second round.
Cobb was a Pro Bowl selection from the Packers in 2014. He played for Green Bay from 2011-’18, and currently plays for the Houston Texans.
“They are very similar type players,” Jeremiah said.
When Cobb was coming out of Kentucky, he was 5-foot-10 ¼. Rodgers is 5-foot-9 ½. Cobb ran a 4.55 in the 40-yard dash, Rodgers ran a 4.5 flat. Cobb had a 33.5-inch vertical, Rodgers had a 33. Cobb had a 9.7-foot broad jump, Rodgers had a 10.1. Cobb benched 16 reps, Rodgers had 19.
“They are guys with very similar body types,” Jeremiah said. “Cobb went in the second round coming out of Kentucky. So, I see a similar type of usage there (with Rodgers). I saw him get some work back there at running back (on Thursday). I think you could sprinkle him in back there as well.
“But again, he is a Day 2 guy all day long.”
Reuter, who did a seven-round draft, had Rodgers going to Tennessee at No. 85 in the third round. He also slated Etienne for a second-round pick at No. 36 to the Miami Dolphins.
He has Carman going in the fourth round to Carolina with the 113th pick. If Carman is picked by the Panthers, it will mark the first time they have drafted a former Clemson player.
Kiper is high on the former Clemson left tackle, too. He projects Carman to be selected at No. 62 overall in the second round, going to the Green Bay Packers.
“I thought hard about Oregon safety Jevon Holland here — he could play next to Darnell Savage — but Carman fills a more immediate void,” Kiper said. “He started 27 games at left tackle for the Tigers but might be best suited to play guard, where the Packers could use a prime pick to get a talent upgrade.”
As for Powell, Reuter did not have him in his draft, but several other mock drafts have the Clemson star going anywhere from the fourth to the seventh round of the draft. So, he appears to be a Day 3 guy at best.
The 2021 NFL Draft begins at 8 p.m. today on ABC, ESPN and the NFL Network.
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