Jordan Reid’s mock draft dropped this week and he had several interesting landing spots for skill players. There will no doubt be a lot that changes between now and the actual 2021 NFL Draft, but it’s good practice to see how each spot impacts players differently.
At the end of September, I discussed the landing spots from one of Joe Marino’s mock draft and how that would impact the outlook of those skill players he mocked. Every week The Draft Network releases a mock draft but doing these constantly wouldn’t give a fair shake of how things change in the draft community and with teams.
Jordan Reid released his mock this past Monday and he has 11 skill players landing in his first round. Some landing spots are the same, some are new, but all of them have new outlooks to discuss.
(Note: I will not be including quarterback landing spots in this piece but if you are curious be sure to check out Jordan’s mock!)
Round One, Pick Eight: Ja’Marr Chase, WR, LSU to the New England Patriots
The Patriots desperately need a wide receiver they can rely on week in and week out to win his matchup for whoever the quarterback is next year. Ja’Marr Chase can absolutely be that guy. From a fantasy perspective, Chase has the ability to make an impact immediately just like CeeDee Lamb and Jerry Jeudy have this year. He would be a fun WR2 on any team right away with future potential for being a WR1.
With Chase sitting out this year to prepare for the draft, here is a reminder of what he can do when he gets to the next level.
The ability to quickly transfer horizontal to vertical movement is important for WR and DB. The long jump is a great indicator of this attribute.
JaMarr Chase long jumped 24'02" in high school which is better than 96% of SEC WR since 2010.pic.twitter.com/3O2Y3FkWGd
— Brian Spilbeler (@CoachSpil) November 9, 2019
Round One, Pick Twelve: Jaylen Waddle, WR, Alabama to the Detroit Lions
Putting Jaylen Waddle opposite Kenny Golladay makes for a fun Madden team. Does it make sense from a fantasy viewpoint, though? For me, I am not as excited about this spot only because I worry he may be more of a Marquise Brown than a Tyreek Hill in terms of playstyle. Obviously, he has top-end upside with his speed and ability to be used in different receiver spots as well as the return game. He will be a first-round dynasty rookie pick regardless of landing spot most likely, but I would be cautious if he lands here.
Round One, Pick Twenty: Travis Etienne, RB, Clemson to the Arizona Cardinals
Another scary landing spot while also being very enticing in Jordan Reid’s mock draft is running back to the Arizona Cardinals. We have seen Kenyan Drake find on again, off again success but Travis Etienne is a different breed. Etienne is a far better pass catcher and has much better vision as a runner as well. Even Momma Drake can attest to that. Etienne would immediately become an instant weapon in this offense and be a top-end fantasy choice in the Kliff Kingsbury offense.
Round One, Pick Twenty One: Devonta Smith, WR, Alabama to the Miami Dolphins
Reunited and it feels so good. It’s not Shania Twain, but I’m sure Tua Tagovailoa can get over that fact when he is reunited with Devonta Smith who he found so much success with while at Alabama. You get the instant connection and instant impact as Smith would be the best receiver on the team in my opinion, and you get immediate production. Win, win, and win for this pick and fantasy players alike.
Remember the first time we were introduced to them? I bet Georgia does.
WHAT. A. GAME.
— SEC Network (@SECNetwork) January 9, 2018
Round One, Pick Twenty Two: Kyle Pitts, TE, Florida to the Jacksonville Jaguars
One of the biggest risers this draft season has Kyle Pitts. He has been on an unstoppable run and has probably already locked up the John Mackey Award for the nation’s top tight end. That being said, Jacksonville has needed a tight end for years now and has been mocked to take one for several years now. If they pull the trigger on Pitts and pair him with their first pick in this mock, Justin Fields, I think we see instant production similar to what we saw from Evan Engram as a rookie. As long as they draft Fields this is my favorite landing spot for anyone in this article.
Round One, Pick Twenty Five: Rashod Bateman, WR, Minnesota to the New Orleans Saints
These last two picks in Jordan Reid’s mock draft are tough in terms of fantasy. For New Orleans, Rashod Bateman is absolutely a top receiver in this class but this landing spot does him no favors as long as Drew Brees or Taysom Hill are under center.
Bateman has the skill set to both separate and go up to win a 50/50 ball. It’s his separation ability, however, that sets him apart from so many receivers in the 2021 class.
Filthy LOS work from Rashod Bateman pic.twitter.com/op8fQWl0DK
— Connor Rogers (@ConnorJRogers) November 9, 2020
Drew Brees has shown he peppers Michael Thomas with targets and when he is out he spreads the wealth around not showing one favoritism. Obviously, Bateman could change that but despite the talent, this isn’t a good fantasy production spot.
Round One, Pick Twenty Seven: Terrace Marshall Jr., WR, LSU to the Baltimore Ravens
Expectations were low, and remain so, for LSU on the offensive side of things but Terrace Marshall has been a lone bright spot for the Tigers this year. He is riding this momentum all the way to the first round here and landing with Baltimore who is also an offense on the ropes this year. Lamar Jackson and company have struggled this year even with a loaded offense full of weapons so adding Marshall doesn’t get me too excited. Marshall would be a low-end WR3 in my opinion with this landing spot despite the obvious talent he has shown this year.
Terrace Marshall is a guy I’d like the Steelers to check out if JuJu Smith-Schuster walks. Big slot receiver who is a TD machine. He’s physical, shifty, and his hands are strong.
— Nick Farabaugh (@FarabaughFB) October 25, 2020