2021 NFL Draft Picks: Don't Buy Mac Jones At 3 Overall, Justin Fields Is The Play
It's been known that Trevor Lawrence would go first overall since he arrived at Clemson. Likewise, the consensus on the second overall pick seems to fairly locked in on Zach Wilson now, and has been since earlier in 2021. Something which only became clearer after his pro day. That hasn't been the case with the third overall pick however.
There has been so much conjecture over the third overall pick, especially after the San Francisco traded up to secure the pick. Mac Jones was heavily believed to be the choice there, that has now flipped to Justin Fields according to the oddsmakers following an impressive pro day. Meanwhile, former GM Michael Lombardi believes that it could actually be Trey Lance.
For me, there's only one choice here, and that's Justin Fields, and at +100 you're getting great value on a player who could be a real star for the Niners.
One of the most fascinating things that I've seen over the past few months was the incredible change in message that many draft analysts had after it became rumored that Mac Jones was the target at third overall.
Before that news broke the football community generally had a low grade on the former Alabama signal caller, with the majority saying that he wasn't worthy of a first round selection. There were questions about his arm, claims he had no athleticism and people used the array of great recievers he had at 'Bama as a reason that his college numbers were overblown.
As soon as reports surfaced that Kyle Shanahan wanted Mac Jones, everything flipped. Those same experts who used Devonta Smith and Jaylen Waddle as a reason why Jones shouldn't be a high pick, are now claiming that his experience working with elite talent shows why he's a day one starter.
Likewise, Justin Fields stock has taken a hit since the season ended. When he was single handedly getting Ohio State wins, he was rated as the second player off the board, then suddenly character concerns and doubts over his size have appeared.
To me Fields is the best talent who'll be there at third overall. His ability to escape the pocket isn't something that you should be concerned at, in the modern NFL and with Kyle Shanahan by his side, that'll be a tool he can use to shred defenses.
Doubts over his arm talent too, have been overblown. He's actually got the best depth of pass in the entire class, averaging 11.6. He ranks third under pressure, has the third highest touchdown rate. This is a seriously talented kid who'll be a huge boost to any team.
We've seen doubts about his size but again, this is the modern NFL, sometimes the prototypical tall prospects pay off, Josh Allen and Justin Herbert have both heavily outperformed how the majority of analysts rated them. With Kyler Murray and Russell Wilson putting up great numbers in the NFL there's really no need to worry about Fields. At 6'3 and 228lb, he's hardly small either, he may not be a physical monster but he's big enough to play at this level.
He's been picked apart by experts since the pre-draft process begun but he's an incredible talent and one who I think would be a first overall pick in 3 of the past 5 years. Don't let these doubts cloud your judgement.
He does have the odd mistake in his but his talent makes up for it, and the way that he's bounced back from setbacks is arguably the most impressive thing about him. I'm a firm believer that Trevor Lawrence is the best QB in this class but Fields is a better competitor than any of them and his ability to fight through adversity is second to none.
NFL Draft Expert Pick
NFL Draft Third Overall Pick - Justin Fields @ +100 (Click to bet)
2021 NFL Draft Free Picks
As we get ready for the 2021 NFL Draft in April, we take a look at the odds for some of the top prospects available. We know Trevor Lawrence will be going first overall, but what about Zach Wilson? Justin Fields? Penei Sewell?
Leading up to the draft, NFL experts Sam Farley and Brian Good will break down the odds for each of the top players in the 2021 NFL Draft and try to predict where they’ll be playing come Week 1 next season.