Four-round 2021 NFL mock draft 1.0: Jets, Falcons take running backs in Round 2

Deals or no deals? This is the question teams in need of a young quarterback are facing heading into the 2021 NFL Draft.

From 2016 to 2018, eight teams traded up to draft a quarterback in the top 12: Bills (Josh Allen), Jets (Sam Darnold), Rams (Jared Goff), Chiefs (Patrick Mahomes), Cardinals (Josh Rosen), Bears (Mitchell Trubisky), Texans (Deshaun Watson) and Eagles (Carson Wentz).

However, in the past two drafts, there were only two trades of any kind made in the top half of the first round and neither of them were for quarterbacks (LB Devin Bush, Steelers, 10th overall selection in 2019; OT Tristan Wirfs, Buccaneers, 13th overall selection in 2020).

This decline in early deals could be the start of a long-time trend because teams seem reluctant to give up three or four premium picks for a prospect. It's also possible that the non-playoff teams typically interested in moving upward were waiting to see whether their current quarterback would develop -- or maybe they just weren't interested in giving up major draft capital for Justin HerbertDaniel Jones, and/or Tua Tagovailoa.

Then again, it wouldn't be shocking to see the no-trade trend end this year, as there is a long list of quarterback-needy teams and plenty to like about the available QBs. For this four-round projection, however, I play out the scenario that mirrors the 2019 and 2020 drafts. The Jets, Falcons and Panthers land future signal-callers in the top eight selections while staying put, but there are five trades in this mock, including one for a quarterback in the middle of the first round.

The free-agent compensatory picks listed in this exercise are based on my colleague Lance Zierlein's projections from last April. The official list will be made available by the league in the weeks to come. Four additional picks were added to the end of the third round for franchises losing minority employees to head coach or general manager positions throughout the league.

The Matthew Stafford-Jared Goff trade between the Lions and Rams, which included L.A. sending a 2021 third-round pick to Detroit, is factored into this mock. The deal moving Carson Wentz from Philadelphia to Indianapolis for a 2021 third-round pick and a conditional 2022 selection is also included. The trades won't become official before the start of the new league year (March 17).

Pick
33
Jacksonville Jaguars
Jacksonville Jaguars
Liam Eichenberg
Notre Dame · OT · Senior (RS)
Pick
34
New York Jets
New York Jets
Travis Etienne
Clemson · RB · Senior


Pick
35
Atlanta Falcons
Atlanta Falcons
Javonte Williams
North Carolina · RB · Junior



Pick
36
Miami Dolphins
Miami Dolphins
Nick Bolton
Missouri · LB · Junior



Pick
37
Philadelphia Eagles
Philadelphia Eagles
Aaron Robinson
UCF · CB · Senior (RS)



Pick
38
Cincinnati Bengals
Cincinnati Bengals
Jayson Oweh
Penn State · Edge · Sophomore (RS)


Pick
39
Carolina Panthers
Carolina Panthers
Alex Leatherwood
Alabama · OT · Senior



Pick
40
Denver Broncos
Denver Broncos
Trevon Moehrig
TCU · S · Junior


Pick
41
Detroit Lions
Detroit Lions
Jevon Holland
Oregon · S · Junior



Pick
42
New York Giants
New York Giants
Alim McNeill
N.C. State · DT · Junior


Pick
43
San Francisco 49ers
San Francisco 49ers
Tyson Campbell
Georgia · CB · Junior


Pick
44
Dallas Cowboys
Dallas Cowboys
Joe Tryon
Washington · Edge · Junior (RS)


Pick
45
Jacksonville Jaguars
Jacksonville Jaguars
Daviyon Nixon
Iowa · DT · Junior (RS)


Pick
46
New England Patriots
New England Patriots
Levi Onwuzurike
Washington · DT · Senior (RS)


Pick
47
Los Angeles Chargers
Los Angeles Chargers
Pat Freiermuth
Penn State · TE · Junior



Pick
48
Las Vegas Raiders
Las Vegas Raiders
Jamin Davis
Kentucky · LB · Junior



Pick
49
Arizona Cardinals
Arizona Cardinals
Frank Darby
Arizona State · WR · Senior (RS)



Pick
50
Miami Dolphins
Miami Dolphins
Creed Humphrey
Oklahoma · C · Junior (RS)



Pick
51
Washington Football Team
Washington Football Team
Wyatt Davis
Ohio State · G · Junior (RS)


Pick
52
Chicago Bears
Chicago Bears
Terrace Marshall Jr.
LSU · WR · Junior



Pick
53
Tennessee Titans
Tennessee Titans
Hunter Long
Boston College · TE · Junior (RS)



Pick
54
Indianapolis Colts
Indianapolis Colts
Samuel Cosmi
Texas · OT · Junior (RS)


Pick
55
Pittsburgh Steelers
Pittsburgh Steelers
Asante Samuel Jr.
Florida State · CB · Junior



Pick
56
Seattle Seahawks
Seattle Seahawks
Ifeatu Melifonwu
Syracuse · CB · Junior (RS)
Pick
57
Los Angeles Rams
Los Angeles Rams
Chris Rumph II
Duke · Edge · Junior (RS)
Pick
58
Baltimore Ravens
Baltimore Ravens
Amon-Ra St. Brown
USC · WR · Junior


Pick
59
Cleveland Browns
Cleveland Browns
Elijah Molden
Washington · CB · Senior


Pick
60
New Orleans Saints
New Orleans Saints
Chazz Surratt
North Carolina · LB · Senior (RS)


Pick
61
Buffalo Bills
Buffalo Bills
Jabril Cox
LSU · LB · Senior (RS)


Pick
62
Green Bay Packers
Green Bay Packers
Tutu Atwell
Louisville · WR · Junior



Pick
63
Kansas City Chiefs
Kansas City Chiefs
Dillon Radunz
North Dakota State · OT · Senior (RS)



Pick
64
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Marvin Wilson
Florida State · DT · Senior


Follow Chad Reuter on Twitter.

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