Allison Koehler brings her report on Overvalued 1st-Rounders In The 2021 NFL Draft.
2021 NFL Mock Drafts have been floating around since the 2020 NFL Draft ended last May. As usual, there are thousands of iterations, but the closer we get to draft day, the more the mocks of the consensus first-round picks start to mirror each other, give or take a spot or two.
With the 2021 NFL Draft just a couple of days away, here’s a look at a few projected 2021 NFL Draft first-rounders who shouldn’t actually be selected until Day 2.
Read our full 2021 NFL Draft Guide Preview, including Marcus Mosher’s 3-round 2021 NFL Mock Draft, player scouting reports, and more.
3 Overvalued 1st-Rounders In The 2021 NFL Draft
1. Zach Wilson, QB, BYU
In my opinion, most quarterbacks projected to go in the first round are overvalued. Zach Wilson is one of them.
One look at expert NFL analyst Lance Zierlien’s profile on Wilson says all you need to know: “NFL comparison: Jake Plummer." I don’t know if I want a Plummer-like quarterback as my franchise guy.
Wilson’s experience against high-level competition is minimal. Is his 33:3 TD:INT impressive? Sure. In a cakewalk season that included defenses like the University of Texas at San Antonio, Troy, Louisiana Tech and Western Kentucky? Not as much.
Wilson’s projected top-three slot is largely based on those junior season performances and a great pro day. Do you know who else had a great pro day? Mitchell Trubisky.
I just don’t see Wilson being the best quarterback to come out of BYU since Jim McMahon in 1985, especially with his well-documented medical history.
2. Zaven Collins, LB, Tulsa
There’s an adage that starts: “Jack of all trades …" We often hear the phrase thrown around when speaking of talent, but what goes by the wayside is the other half of the saying (and perhaps the most important): “master of none."
“Jack of all trades, master of none" is a perfect statement to describe Zaven Collins. He’s good at many things, but he doesn’t excel at any one of them.
Does Collins play on the weakside or strongside? Does he play inside or outside?
Take linebacker Haason Reddick, 2017 13th overall pick by the Arizona Cardinals. It took Reddick three seasons of struggling to figure out what he did best before he finally had a career season in the desert.
Arizona did not exercise his fifth-year option, and now he calls Carolina home. Sounds like an overvalued first-rounder to me.
With Collins, there’s likely to be time spent experimenting and discerning what his role will be. For a team to invest a first-round pick, a player in such an important role should be expected to come in and contribute immediately.
3. Jayson Oweh, EDGE, Penn State
Jayson Oweh lacks the experience to be selected in the first round. He started just eight of 33 games. For a pass rusher, Oweh also lacks something else: sacks.
While Oweh blew teams away with his rare pro day 40-yard dash speed (4.36 seconds), he sacked the quarterback just 6.5 times in college. In 2020, he recorded zero.
Pass rushers who don’t record a sack in any one season should not be considered a first-round talent, let alone top 10 where some projections show him going.
As with Collins, Oweh reeks of future potential, but first-round selections should be reserved for immediate impact players. He’ll need time to adjust to the speed of the pros and may start as a rotational player as he learns the ropes.