Chaos reigns supreme in a new 2021 NFL mock draft as every first-round pick gets traded (if it already hasn’t been).
It wouldn’t be far from the truth to say that the 2021 NFL Draft has already turned a bit chaotic in the first round. From the 49ers trading up to No. 3, the Dolphins then trading back up to No. 6 so the Eagles could move down, to the other first-round picks that had previously been dealt, all the way to the trades that could still be in the cards, it’s been a wild ride already. And we’re still two weeks away from the draft actually beginning on Thursday, April 29.
But instead of marveling at the chaos (and admittedly enjoying it), what if we fully embraced it?
Every year, I compile one NFL mock draft in which chaos is the predominant narrative. There’s very little predictive about it, to be sure. Instead, it’s a thought exercise to examine team needs and, if they were extremely desperate and went all out, how they could trade and move to fill the holes on the roster. To accomplish that, the goal is for every first-round pick to be traded at least once.
Picks that have already been traded count towards that, for clarity’s sake. So, with the help of The Draft Network’s mock draft machine and TDN Premium (subscription required) — in addition to some creative thinking early on — we’ve done exactly that. And this chaos edition 2021 NFL mock draft begins with Bill Belichick getting his hands on Trevor Lawrence.
Every first-round pick is traded in a new 2021 NFL mock draft.
Trade: Patriots send 2021 (No. 15), 2022, 2023, 2025 first-round picks, 2021 and 2024 second-round picks, 2021 fourth-round pick (No. 120), and CB Stephon Gilmore to Jaguars for No. 1 overall – Well, it would take a king’s ransom to lure the Jaguars away from the No. 1 overall pick and taking Trevor Lawrence and this would certainly qualify. But if the Patriots were to actually offer four first-round picks, two second-round picks and a Defensive Player of the Year caliber cornerback, Jacksonville would at least have to listen to what New England had to say — especially if they’d have the draft capital to still make a run at a quarterback in this draft class.
In the case of the Pats, they are a team in a situation where they could be this desperate. To be sure, Belichick wouldn’t be in reality. But being set to roll with Cam Newton again should make an organization evaluate their long-term plans. Lawrence would set this franchise up for another potential run at a dynasty, especially with their big free-agency spending spree to help the offensive skill positions.
Trade: Raiders send No. 17 and 39 picks, 2022 first-round pick, 2023 second-round pick, and Derek Carr to Jets for No. 2 overall – If there was ever a chance that the Jets would trade out of the No. 2 overall pick, it would have to be a situation in which they were getting an answer at quarterback. Some people might scoff at Derek Carr but, if you dig into it, he’s actually coming off arguably his best season ever with the Raiders. He’s a player who you could seemingly win with.
So if New York could get that quarterback, two first-round picks and two second-round picks as well so the Raiders could reset at quarterback with Zach Wilson, they’d have to think about it.
For Las Vegas, head coach Jon Gruden is famously antsy with quarterbacks and the fact he’s stuck with Carr this long is surprising to some people. So resetting the position with someone that has the electric tools Wilson possesses would seemingly make sense if they were to get ultra-aggressive.