2021 NFL Draft The teams that did a better job strengthening themselves … and those that didn’t
men three days, 259 players joined the NFL ranks in the 2021 edition of the Draft, the league’s illusion factory.
It is difficult to assess the real impact of a generation of chosen players, since few are those who really play a prominent role immediately: only 52 of the 255 chosen in 2020 were 500 plays on the field, 20%.
Still, considering lthe needs of the teams prior to the Draft, the place where the players were chosen, either earlier or later than expected, the winners and losers of the draft can be found.
René Bugner compiled the ratings of 18 experts at the conclusion of the Draft and gave GPA-style grades, finding clear winners and losers.
2021 NFL Draft Team Grades
I combined 18 assessments for GPA incl:
Doug Farrar and Mark Schofield
Mel Goalkeeper Jr
Thanks guys pic.twitter.com/vM6OnVl4aK
? René Bugner (@RNBWCV) May 2, 2021
LA Chargers: Protecting Justin Herbert was a priority and although there were many offenses chosen at the start of the first round, the second best tackle fell, Rashawn slater Northwestern, who at the time contained Chase Young one by one. Then they got a versatile safety in Asante Samuel Jr., who paints to play everywhere with Derwin James. Then they got Josh Palmer, who had his two best games in 2020 against Georgia and Alabama, the SEC’s best defenders; looks to be the third WR behind Keenan Allen and Mike Williams.
Cleveland Browns: the Municipal Kennel may well have the best roster in the NFL, subject to what development Baker Mayfield may have. With Greg Newsome, they further propped up a perimeter that will be much better in 2021 for health and free agency, they took the 52nd pick that many considered the second best linebacker, Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah Notre Dame, who also meets a great need. Anthony Schwartz, who at the time set a youth record in the 100 meters, arrives to create a gap because every defense has to respect his speed … that means more gaps for his large group of TE, Odell and Landry.
New England Patriots: they took a QB without having to go up for it. Mac Jones he has elements of Brady and Garoppolo in his game and should be taking over sooner rather than later. At the start of the second round they took Christian barmore Alabama, the best defensive tackle of the generation and who was painting for the first round. One more receiver was missing, but that could be improved if Jones succeeds Brady.
Chicago Bears: they had to invest a lot to get Justin fields, but he is the most talented QB that comes to this team perhaps in its history (no, it is not hyperbola) and that the previous years was always seen as the second best QB of his generation, in the shadow of Trevor Lawrence. The downside is that the coach and manager can leave if the team has a season without Playoffs, so there could be some instability in the early years, with various schemes. But if you fix the most important position … everything else doesn’t matter. His next four picks were protection and hands, which should only help.
The most important news of the Draft was that Aaron Rodgers wants to leave Green Bay. The expiration date was set for 2022 after choosing Jordan Love, but it seems that the 2020 MVP wants to control the breakup.
The Denver Broncos rise as the main destination because they have more than enough offensive weapons and an elite defense. It could be a repeat of Peyton Manning in 2012. It remains to be expected, but those moves would drastically change both teams’ expectations for 2021 and the medium-term future.
LOSERS OF THE 2021 NFL DRAFT
Pittsburgh Steelers: The Steelers had the worst running game in the league in 2020 in yards per carry, lost a couple of starting linemen and found that settled with one running back. Nothing against Najee harris, who is talented, but it is proven that the line influences much more than a running back, and neither Walter Payton or Barry Sanders could succeed against the second worst line of 2020 and that it could be worse. Then they chose a tight end, putting aside the holes in the line, the corners (not served until the seventh round despite losing two starters) and did not choose anyone to fill in for Bud Dupree’s departure.
Dallas Cowboys: the two corners they wanted left just before their pick 10, so they switched and chose Micah Parsons. Then also to another linebacker, Jabril cox, in the fourth round. Peculiar decisions when there are already players on those sites, Leigton Vander Esch (maybe not such a bad idea for so many injuries) and Jaylon Smith. The defense looks even worse than the unit that was one of the worst in 2020.
Houston Texans: they were the team he later chose, as the trade with Miami in early 2019 for Laremy Tunsil and Kenny Stills cost them their first and second rounds. With holes practically throughout the campus, they chose … quarterback. Clear sign that the situation of Deshaun Watson looks very bad. From there they chose a receiver (Nico Collins) and a tight end (Brevin Jordan), leaving one of the worst defenses unattended until the 170th pick.
Seattle Seahawks: only three picks, with serious deficiencies in the offensive and defensive lines … and they chose a receiver with their first selection, who reached the second round.
LA Rams: peculiar Draft of the Rams. Without a first-round pick for the change to Jalen Ramsey in mid-2019, they had holes when losing their center and two starters on the perimeter and three of his nine teams were receivers. Yes, there are already rumors that Robert Woods would be in his final season, but you had Cooper Kupp, 2020 rookie Van Jefferson and DeSean Jackson on board … it wasn’t a priority and the gaps are still hollow.