2021 NFL Draft order: Giants in top 10; 49ers No. 12

This is a look at the first-round order for the 2021 NFL Draft heading into Week 15 of the NFL season, along with the top three needs for each team. The order is determined by record, using strength of schedule as the first tiebreaker (click here to see a full list of the draft-order tiebreakers). Keep in mind -- teams 19-32 would make the playoffs if the season ended today and are marked as PL (short for playoffs) in the order below. The draft order for playoff teams is determined by the results of postseason play.

Pick
1
New York Jets
New York Jets
0-13 · .592 strength of schedule

Biggest needs: QB, edge rusher, CB

This week's game: at Rams


Sam Darnold had a chance to make a case for why he should keep his starting job heading into 2021 when he returned from injury in Week 12 with a healthier supporting cast around him. Thus far, he's not making a compelling argument. Darnold is third-to-last in passer rating over that span (min. 50 attempts) and has more turnovers than touchdowns.

Pick
2
Jacksonville Jaguars
Jacksonville Jaguars
1-12 · .536

Biggest needs: QB, CB, OT

This week's game: at Ravens


Among the pressing tasks for the Jaguars' next GM is establishing some consistency at cornerback. It's been a month since Jacksonville last started the same tandem at the position in consecutive weeks, and two of their top players at the position (D.J. Hayden and Sidney Jones) are due to become free agents in 2021.

Pick
3
Cincinnati Bengals
Cincinnati Bengals
2-10-1 · .518

Biggest needs: OL, edge rusher, CB

This week's game: vs. Steelers


The Bengals have the fourth-lowest QB pressure rate (21.9%) and have allowed the second-most sacks in the league (46). They're going to have to reverse these trends to find their way out of the cellar.

Pick
4
Los Angeles Chargers
Los Angeles Chargers
4-9 · .459

Biggest needs: OL, TE, CB

This week's game: at Raiders


It would be surprising to see the Chargers let Hunter Henry walk. He's Justin Herbert's second-favorite target and there's no one waiting in the wings to replace him. But until they get a deal done with the pending free agent, there's a home for tight end on the needs list.

Pick
5
3
Atlanta Falcons
Atlanta Falcons
4-9 · .497

Biggest needs: Edge rusher, DB, QB

This week's game: vs. Buccaneers


Since Week 8, the only quarterbacks with a lower passer rating than Matt Ryan are Jake Luton, Carson Wentz, Sam Darnold and Mike Glennon (min. 100 attempts in that span). With a 4-12 season and top-five pick looking very realistic for the Falcons, it's going to be awfully tempting to select selecting Ryan's heir apparent in 2021.

Pick
6
1
Carolina Panthers
Carolina Panthers
4-9 · .509

Biggest needs: QB, OL, CB

This week's game: at Packers


When you combine Teddy Bridgewater's less-than-inspiring play with the Panthers' current spot in the draft order and daunting remaining schedule, you get a situation conducive to Carolina drafting a QB with its top pick in 2021.

Pick
7
2
Dallas Cowboys
Dallas Cowboys
4-9 · .515

Biggest needs: CB, OL, LB

This week's game: vs. 49ers


Drafting the top cornerback or linebacker available might be an attractive option as the Cowboys try to rebuild a broken defense (dead last in points allowed).

Pick
8
1
Miami Dolphins
Miami Dolphins

PICK ACQUIRED FROM THE HOUSTON TEXANS


Texans' record: 4-9 (.550)

This week's Texans game: at Colts


See the playoff teams section for analysis of the Dolphins' needs and the bottom of this article for analysis of the Texans' needs.

Pick
9
3
Philadelphia Eagles
Philadelphia Eagles
4-8-1 · .553

Biggest needs: OG, LB, CB

This week's game: at Cardinals


The offensive line looked a lot better with Jalen Hurts than it did with Carson Wentz, but we're not going to shake up the needs outlook here after only one start, albeit an impressive one.

Pick
10
9
New York Giants
New York Giants
5-8 · .488

Biggest needs: Edge rusher, CB, OT

This week's game: vs. Browns


A limited Daniel Jones didn't help matters, but Sunday's sack outburst by the Cardinals did offer a reminder of the work that needs to be done on the Giants' offensive line. Left tackle Andrew Thomas is tied for the league lead in pressures allowed (51), per PFF, and there doesn't appear to be a long-term answer at right tackle.

Pick
11
Detroit Lions
Detroit Lions
5-8 · .491

Biggest needs: WR, DL, LB

This week's game: at Titans


It's the same old story for the Lions' porous defense, which has allowed a league-high 117.3 passer rating since Week 11. Detroit recorded zero sacks and only one QB hit against Aaron Rodgers on Sunday.

Pick
12
2
San Francisco 49ers
San Francisco 49ers
5-8 · .553

Biggest needs: CB, OL, edge rusher

This week's game: at Cowboys


Re-signing Trent Williams figures to be a top priority for GM John Lynch, but will he be in the market for help on the interior O-line? Ben Garland, Tom Compton and Hroniss Grasu have deals that expire in 2021 and Laken Tomlinson has only year left on his contract.

Pick
13
3
Denver Broncos
Denver Broncos
5-8 · .562

Biggest needs: CB, edge rusher, QB

This week's game: vs. Bills


It will be interesting to see just how big a void there is to fill when it comes to the Broncos' pass rush. Three of the Broncos' five leaders in sacks this season are in a contract year, and there's uncertainty about Von Miller's future with the team.

Pick
14
6
Minnesota Vikings
Minnesota Vikings
6-7 · .491

Biggest needs: OL, DT, edge rusher

This week's game: vs. Bears


Mike Zimmer will have to add some disruptors to a defense that ranks dead last in pressure rate (19.9%).

Pick
15
2
Chicago Bears
Chicago Bears
6-7 · .521

Biggest needs: QB, OL, WR

This week's game: at Vikings


Mitchell Trubisky had a great afternoon against the Texans on Sunday and was good against the Lions last week (until he gave the game away at the end). Should these developments significantly alter anyone's opinion of what the Bears need to do at quarterback this offseason? Remember, Houston and Detroit have two of the worst defenses in the NFL.

Pick
16
New England Patriots
New England Patriots
6-7 · .521

Biggest needs: DL, WR, QB

This week's game: at Dolphins


We are ending our holdout and adding QB to the needs list this week. Who knows what the future holds for Cam Newton, but it's a strange place to be when your quarterback has thrown twice as many INTs (10) as TDs (5) entering Week 15 and your coach is committed to sticking with that QB as the starter. He has run for 11 scores, though.

Pick
17
Las Vegas Raiders
Las Vegas Raiders
7-6 · .550

Biggest needs: DT, OL, edge rusher

This week's game: vs. Chargers


The Raiders can't stop the run or get to the opposing quarterback right now, so the defensive coordinator change is understandable. What will Mike Mayock do in the offseason to spark a pass rush that has produced the second-fewest sacks in the league (15)?

Pick
18
Baltimore Ravens
Baltimore Ravens
8-5 · .574

Biggest needs: WR, OL, edge rusher

This week's game: vs. Jaguars


This might come as a surprise given the reputation of the Baltimore defense, but the Ravens have posted four sacks since Week 9, which ties them with the Bengals for the fewest in the league in that span.

Pick
PL
7
Washington Football Team
Washington Football Team
6-7 · .467

Biggest needs: QB, WR, OL

This week's game: vs. Seahawks


We hope Alex Smith doesn't miss any further time with his current injury and continues his remarkable comeback story for years to come. His efficiency has helped Washington rise to the top of the NFC East, but he's averaging 5.3 air yards per attempt, easily the fewest among QBs with 200 or more attempts this season. 

Pick
PL
5
Arizona Cardinals
Arizona Cardinals
7-6 · .473

Biggest needs: CB, edge rusher, interior OL

This week's game: vs. Eagles


After posting a franchise single-game record five sacks on Sunday, edge rusher Haason Reddick can probably bank on cashing in this offseason. Will it be with the Cardinals? He now ranks sixth in the league with 10 sacks and is in a contract year after the team declined to pick up his fifth-year option.

Pick
PL
Miami Dolphins
Miami Dolphins
8-5 · .417

Biggest needs: WR, ILB, interior OL

This week's game: vs. Patriots


The Dolphins gave Kansas City a scare, but there was a stark contrast between the two offenses. Miami, which, in addition to this pick, is currently holding a top-10 selection via the Houston Texans, is lacking an explosive wide receiver who can blow up a defensive game plan. The Chiefs had three pass plays of 30 or more yards on Sunday. The injury-plagued Dolphins didn't have any.

Pick
PL
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
8-5 · .544

Biggest needs: Edge rusher, DT, WR

This week's game: at Falcons


Edge rusher seems as good a bet as any to top the needs list with Shaq Barrett playing on the franchise tag and Jason Pierre-Paul a year away from free agency.

Pick
PL
New York Jets
New York Jets

PICK ACQUIRED FROM THE SEATTLE SEAHAWKS


Seahawks' record: 9-4 (.447)

This week's Seahawks game: at Washington Football Team


See Pick No. 1 for analysis of the Jets' needs and the bottom of this article for analysis of the Seahawks' needs.

Pick
PL
Indianapolis Colts
Indianapolis Colts
9-4 · .453

Biggest needs: QB, CB, edge rusher

This week's game: vs. Texans


The Colts were hoping former second-round picks Ben Banogu and Kemoko Turay would develop into reliable edge rushers, but it hasn't happened to this point. Banogu hasn't been able to earn playing time and Turay is being worked back into the rotation slowly after missing a full year due to an ankle injury.

Pick
PL
Cleveland Browns
Cleveland Browns
9-4 · .453

Biggest needs: LB, CB, edge rusher

This week's game: at Giants


Monday night's game reinforced what we already knew: There are needs at every level of the Browns' defense. Cleveland has allowed 81 points in the last two weeks to playoff-caliber competition.

Pick
PL
Tennessee Titans
Tennessee Titans
9-4 · .482

Biggest needs: Edge rusher, WR, interior DL

This week's game: vs. Lions


The Titans' pass-rushing woes continue. They failed to record a sack on Sunday against a lowly Jaguars team that attempted 54 passes. Tennessee has just 14 sacks all season, the fewest in the league.

Pick
PL
Jacksonville Jaguars
Jacksonville Jaguars

PICK ACQUIRED FROM THE LOS ANGELES RAMS


Rams' record: 9-4 (.494)

This week's Rams game: vs. Jets


See Pick No. 2 for analysis of the Jaguars' needs and the bottom of this article for analysis of the Rams' needs.

Pick
PL
Green Bay Packers
Green Bay Packers
10-3 · .435

Biggest needs: WR, CB, interior OL

This week's game: vs. Panthers


Jaire Alexander continues to play at an elite level. However, the Packers don't have another corner rated among PFF's top 95 players at the position and Kevin King is in a contract year.

Pick
PL
New Orleans Saints
New Orleans Saints
10-3 · .441

Biggest needs: DL, DB, WR

This week's game: vs. Chiefs


There are a lot of questions awaiting the Saints in the offseason, starting at the quarterback position, but their biggest potential free-agent losses are on a defense that sprouted some leaks on Sunday.

Pick
PL
Buffalo Bills
Buffalo Bills
10-3 · .515

Biggest needs: Edge rusher, OL, CB

This week's game: at Broncos


One of the big decisions facing Buffalo this offseason will be whether to bank on significant Year 2 development from edge rusher A.J. Epenesa after a slow start or add more competition for him at the position.

Pick
PL
Pittsburgh Steelers
Pittsburgh Steelers
11-2 · .450

Biggest needs: OT, edge rusher, CB

This week's game: at Bengals


How valuable is free-agent-to-be Bud Dupree? In Weeks 1-12 (with a healthy Dupree), the Steelers had a league-best 41.2 percent pressure rate. In the two games since he suffered a season-ending injury, Pittsburgh has a pressure rate of 26.9 percent (17th in the league).

Pick
PL
Kansas City Chiefs
Kansas City Chiefs
12-1 · .450

Biggest needs: Interior OL, WR, edge rusher

This week's game: at Saints


The Chiefs have added a weapon for Patrick Mahomes with their top pick in each of the last two drafts (Clyde Edwards-Helaire, 2020; Mecole Hardman, 2019). Will they make it three in a row? Keep in mind that WRs Sammy Watkins and Demarcus Robinson are due to hit the market this offseason.

TEAMS WITHOUT A FIRST-ROUND PICK

Houston Texans
Houston Texans
4-9

TRADED FIRST-ROUND PICK TO THE MIAMI DOLPHINS


Biggest needs: WR, CB, edge rusher

This week's game: at Colts


Guard is another spot pushing for a place in the top three needs. Right guard Zach Fulton is a cut candidate and Max Scharping has lost his starting job at left guard.

Los Angeles Rams
Los Angeles Rams
9-4

TRADED FIRST-ROUND PICK TO THE JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS


Biggest needs: OL, edge rusher, LB

This week's game: vs. Jets


WR and TE don't crack the top three needs here because of the Rams' depth at those positions, but let's not underestimate the potential losses of pending free agents Josh Reynolds and Gerald Everett. They rank third and fourth on the team in receptions, respectively.

Seattle Seahawks
Seattle Seahawks
9-4

TRADED FIRST-ROUND PICK TO THE NEW YORK JETS


Biggest needs: OL, CB, edge rusher

This week's game: at Washington Football Team


Seattle's offensive line bounced back against the punchless Jets, but a vastly tougher test awaits in Week 15. Will Washington's supercharged front expose the Seahawks' vulnerability up front?

Follow Dan Parr on Twitter.

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