Friday, September 24

Justin Fields Mock Draft: Experts Predict Who Will Pick Ohio State QB in 2021 NFL Draft

Where will Justin Fields land?

At one point, Ohio State’s product was a block for QB2 behind Trevor Lawrence in the 2021 NFL Draft. Now, Fields’ position as a top-10 passer is apparently anything but certain.

Fields has gone through the wringer during this pre-draft cycle: His work ethic has been unfairly questioned, his mechanics have been shredded, and his game day processing “issues” have been very, very exaggerated.

While NFL Draft experts can’t come to a consensus on where Fields will land, there seems to be a popular spot, within the top 10 picks, where the passer seems to be a perfect fit.

This is where the draftniks say Fields will go Thursday night:

MOST DRAFT OF THE NFL: Complete 7-round simulation | Big Top 100 board

Daniel Jeremiah, NFL Network

  • Choose: No. 7
  • Team: Detroit lions

Analysis: “This could be a trade-off spot, with some teams picking after Detroit potentially on the market for a quarterback, but I wouldn’t rule out the Lions sticking around and taking a cue. Fields has more advantages than Jared Goff.”

Jeremiah’s reasoning makes sense here: While the Lions traded for Jared Goff this offseason, Fields’ athleticism, arm and roof are all perks of what Goff is offering right now. While Detroit may choose to give Goff a year to work it out in the new offense, Fields may benefit from sitting for a year.

Mel Portero, ESPN

  • Choose: Number 3
  • Team: San Francisco 49ers

Analysis: “You should know by now how much I like Fields. He has all the tools to be a superstar and would thrive on Kyle Shanahan’s offense.”

Kiper has a tendency to overthink things in his draft drills, but this is the right call for Kyle Shanahan and Co. at No. 3. While reports suggest Shanahan is hot after Alabama quarterback Mac Jones, Fields has the athleticism that Jones doesn’t. It also has the great gameplay experience that Trey Lance lacks, although it’s also a pretty far-fetched narrative.

MORE: Justin Fields and the Biggest Mysteries of the 2021 NFL Draft

Todd McShay, ESPN

  • Choose: No. 9
  • Team: Denver Broncos

Analysis: “Drew Lock hasn’t started a full season yet and didn’t have his number one receiver (Courtland Sutton) practically for the entire 2020 season, so it’s not yet known if he can be the guy. But even though I like his game and I think he can be a good starter, his production has not lived up to expectations in a division that includes Patrick Mahomes, Derek Carr and Justin Herbert. “

McShay thinks that if a quarterback is available in the No. 9 pick, whether it’s Fields or Trey Lance, the Broncos will take on a passer or defensive playmaker. Logic says there has been too much shaky play from Lock in a Broncos uniform, and Fields presents a fresh start for George Paton and Vic Fangio.

Dane Brugler, The Athletic

  • Choose: No. 9
  • Team: Denver Broncos

Analysis: “How seriously are the Broncos considering a quarterback at No. 9? With a first-year general manager in George Paton (and John Elway not completely out of the picture), it’s hard to tell. But Drew Lock hasn’t done the right thing. enough to secure the starting job and Fields’ talent might be too good to pass up. “

George Paton is inheriting both Drew Lock and head coach Vic Fangio as he enters his first year on the job, which means there could be a one-year grace period to find out what they want to do as a quarterback. Still, Fields is too good a talent to pass up to the Broncos, who have struggled to find the next player in the franchise after John Elway, and to a lesser extent, Peyton Manning.

Brugler’s point stands: Lock simply hasn’t done enough as a quarterback in two seasons to justify letting Fields’ electrical talent pass.

MORE: Ranking of the 10 best quarterbacks in the 2021 NFL Draft

Peter King, NBC Sports

  • Choose: No. 8
  • Team: Carolina Panthers

Analysis: “Count the Panthers as another team that would love to take a bunch of picks from New England or Washington to come down. As I wrote last week, Carolina hates the fact that the franchise has averaged 6.2 picks per draft in the last eight years. when the average team is 8.1. I’m not sure they’d use the pick here at Fields, because they’re really optimistic about Sam Darnold. But owner David Tepper has made no secret that finding a franchise quarterback has to be a one-two job. , three and four for the team. That the fields fall into their hands makes sense, even if it would crush the new starting QB. “

The Panthers who select Justin Fields just weeks after trading for Sam Darnold isn’t as crazy as it sounds. Carolina is desperate to find the next franchise quarterback, and Darnold’s experiment can be two ways: improvement just enough to be a top-15 QB, or the flaws he showed while with the Jets continue to emerge. The idea of ​​Darnold making the jump to a top 10 quarterback is simply unfounded at this point, regardless of how bad the situation was in New York.

So, to that end, the Panthers by selecting Justin Fields double their chances of finding a franchise player, but the organization would almost certainly go long-term over Darnold in the long run.

Vinnie Iyer, Sports News

  • Choose: No. 9
  • Team: Denver Broncos

Analysis: “The Broncos and Fields seem made for each other based on what’s going on with the QB game, and it remains to be seen if Denver will need to trade to protect its most coveted asset by working to improve on Drew Lock … Fields it fits well in terms of the outline, structure and support staff under Pat Shurmur. “

Shurmur had his tough times as the NFL head coach, but his reputation as a pretty good player is well earned. Shurmur has had talented quarterbacks, but none with the physical attributes of Fields, which makes for a very good game, on paper.

MORE: Justin Fields and the Ohio State quarterback stigma in the NFL

Chris Simms, NBC Sports

  • Choose: No. 32
  • Team: Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Analysis: “The Bucs have it all, there’s no need on their soccer team. Again, I didn’t go into this with a preconceived notion of ‘Hey, I’m leaving Justin Fields for 32.’ I didn’t do that … They’ll say , ‘Great, this is perfect for you. Learn from Tom Brady.’

Simms, as good an analyst as he is, seems to be very out of place in his projection here. While a slide for Fields might be on the cards, projecting him to the end of the first round doesn’t make much sense. If Fields goes down, someone will switch to catch him, and Simms has already projected the WFT will sneak up to selecting Trey Lance in the top 10.

In the NFL in 2021, rookie quarterbacks generally benefit from playing right away, and while Tom Brady is (maybe?) Entering the final stages of his career, it is unknown when Fields might enter the field to play. . Fields on the bench for more than a year would immediately eliminate the benefit of a rookie quarterback contract for Tampa Bay, especially when there’s no telling how long they’ll be able to hold the super-talent pool together.

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