Sunday, January 16

Kyle Trask’s Simulated Draft: Steelers, Bears, and Washington Amongst Best Tweaks in 2021 NFL Draft for Florida QB

After five quarterbacks come out as expected in the first round of the 2021 NFL Draft, there will still be a more viable option as a future starter in a strong class for the job. That would be Florida’s Kyle Trask, coming off an outstanding season that allowed him to finish fourth in the Heisman Trophy race.

Trask (6-5, 240 pounds) was head-to-head with Alabama’s Mac Jones as a fast-rising prospect in the SEC. Jones broke away by raising his level of play in the College Football Playoff with his players of stellar ability to lead the Crimson Tide to another national championship. Trask didn’t have the same kind of positive postseason display without his key goals in the Gators’ draft at the Cotton Bowl.

Trask has the size, strong arm, and precision to succeed in the NFL, but for now he’s peaking as an early-to-mid second-round prospect because he’s more of a prototype pro pocket passer who needs some support and development of the system to become a full passer. He took advantage of big goals in Florida, led by soon-to-be first-round players Kyle Pitts and Kadarius Toney.

There will be a number of NFL teams that would have been interested in picking a potential first-round starting quarterback, but their picks were too low. Others will look to Trask more to take over in the near future.

Below are the most likely landing spots for Trask, likely April 30, Night 2 of the draft, either in the second or third round:

MOST NFL DRAFT: SN’s Latest 2021 Mock Draft | Big Top 100 board

Kyle Trask’s 2021 NFL Draft Best Adjustments

1. Washington soccer team (No. 51 or No. 74 overall)

Washington is replacing Alex Smith with Ryan Fitzpatrick as the bridge’s new quarterback. The football team’s development options are young former Panthers Kyle Allen and Taylor Heinicke, with good familiarity with the Scott Turner scheme under Ron Rivera. Trask’s skill set would suggest that he can prepare well in the system, in case WFT wants to have another immediate option that can be turned into a long-term one.

At 19th overall in the first round, a top-five quarterback should be out of reach. But Washington has two reasonable entry points on Night 2 to get Trask, and the final third round comes from the 49ers.

2. Chicago Bears (No. 52)

The Bears chose Andy Dalton as their quarterback on the bridge to avoid reopening Nick Foles after Mitchell Trubisky (Bills) was not re-signed. But Dalton, like Fitzpatrick, also landed a one-year deal worth $ 10 million. Chicago made that similar move knowing that it might also be out of luck in the first round and in need of an impromptu initial fix.

Trask’s style should appeal to offensive-minded coach Matt Nagy and coordinator Bill Lazor. Dalton, who played for Lazor in Cincinnati, was a type of prospect parallel to Trask when the Bengals took him in the second round in 2011.

3. Pittsburgh Steelers (No. 55)

The Steelers are squeezing a season over 39-year-old Ben Roehtlisberger despite his signs of massive physical decline coming back from a right elbow injury last season. His arm strength became limited and the wear should continue in 2021. Going after Trask as a transition plan in the middle of the second round would make a lot of sense.

Pittsburgh should have a great emphasis on running the ball more effectively with a reshuffled line and has a good array of young receivers in JuJu Smith-Schuster, Diontae Johnson and Chase Claypool. Trask can prepare well with new offensive coordinator Matt Canada with helpful support regardless of Roethlisberger’s feelings about being a lame mentor in duck throwing.

4. New England Patriots (No. 46)

The Patriots should be mentioned with every quarterback chance in this draft, but at 15th overall, unless they switch, they should join Washington and the Bears to be out of luck in the fifth round of the first round. If they like Trask enough to be worth a second-round pick, they shouldn’t hesitate to pick him up for Josh McDaniels and Bill Belichick, some picks ahead of Washington and the Bears.

New England might be turning to want a more versatile double threat at the QB, but in terms of mindset and passing skill set, Trask should have some appeal for traditional rapid development, much like the Patriots came off their most recent QB. second round. , Jimmy Garoppolo. They also have a lot more support from two veteran tight ends, a deeper receiving corps and a solid line to lift a young passer from Trask’s class.

5. Atlanta Falcons (No. 35 or No. 68)

The Falcons may no longer be thinking of hiding a bullish quarterback like North Dakota State’s Trey Lance with the No. 4 overall pick, with the 49ers likely poised to knock the third QB off the board now at No. 3. But the Falcons may think about adding a potential successor to Matt Ryan starting in the first round. Trask has some athletic limitations, but he can operate well on Arthur Smith’s offense with established wide receiver support and an expected improved running game.

6. Las Vegas Raiders (No. 49, No. 80 or No. 81)

Arguably, the Raiders got the best season of Derek Carr’s career last season. But despite bringing Marcus Mariota back, Jon Gruden and Mike Mayock could kick the tires again and develop a true back-up replacement other than Carr with a higher perception in the near future. Carr has easy contract exits for solid cap savings this offseason and the next when he turns 30 before becoming a free agent in 2023.

Trask may work well in Greg Olson’s version of the West Coast passing game, as the Raiders can also incorporate some extended concepts to help him. It is more likely to be a move should Trask fall in Round 3.

7. Detroit Lions (No. 41 or No. 72)

The Lions made it more difficult to get out of Jared Goff’s contract in 2022 by restructuring him now to ease the salary cap. But if he does shut down with his new team this season, they could still part ways before next year with him via a June 1 trade or cut to eat some extra dead money with a higher cap.

New general manager Brad Holmes said he was intrigued by the class’s quarterbacks, even after trading Matthew Stafford for Goff with the Rams. If the Lions like Trask as a fresh, young alternative to shooting Goff for the long haul, they have a couple of possible Night 2 picks to get it with.

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