NFL Mock Draft: How the first-round shakes out after Sam Darnold trade

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Sam Darnold, New York Jets

Sam Darnold, New York Jets, NFL  (Photo by Al Pereira/Getty Images)

The 2021 NFL Draft will kick off later this month, and after trading for Sam Darnold, the Carolina Panthers get him an elite weapon.

The big news around the NFL was the New York Jets trading Sam Darnold on Monday, throwing a wrench in the top-10 picks in the first round of the 2021 NFL Draft. Players will move up and down the ladder, as we inch closer to round one, and in our latest mock, an elite player lands in Carolina to join Darnold.

Here is our latest 2021 NFL Mock Draft.

1

Trevor Lawrence

QB, Jacksonville Jaguars

No big surprise here, as the Jacksonville Jaguars kick off our latest 2021 NFL Mock Draft by selecting Clemson star quarterback Trevor Lawrence. While there may be movement after Lawrence, this pick seems set in stone, as he is considered one of the best quarterback prospects we have seen in a few years.

With Lawrence under center, Urban Meyer can start his rebuild in a big way, and he has already brought in some quality talent via free agency. As they say, the draft starts at pick No. 2, but after the moves made this week, the draft may end up starting at pick No. 3 before all is said and done.

2

Zach Wilson

QB, New York Jets

The New York Jets finally gave Sam Darnold his ticket out of New York, as they traded him to the Carolina Panthers for a few draft picks. The Jets, who hold the No. 2 overall pick, are more than likely bringing in Zach Wilson here, as they must have fallen in love with him during his impressive Pro Day.

Wilson is a solid quarterback talent, but he is a pretty big question mark, and who knows whether or not he is going to be able to start right away. The Jets may have been in better shape had they stayed with Darnold, and traded this pick away, but it looks like Joe Douglas and Robert Saleh are putting their careers in the hands of Wilson.

3

Mac Jones

QB, San Francisco 49ers

The San Francisco 49ers traded all the way up to the No. 3 overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft, so you have to believe they are going to go with a quarterback here. With this selection, I am going to lean on ESPN’s Adam Schefter and say they end up selecting Alabama quarterback Mac Jones, who is fresh off an outstanding season for the Crimson Tide.

In Jones, the 49ers get a player they could actually sit behind Jimmy Garoppolo for a year, but also someone who has the skill set to come in and play right away. Nobody moves up this high to select a player outside of a quarterback, and between Justin Fields and Jones, it looks like the experts expect the pick to be Jones.

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