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Leisher's 2021 Mock Draft #5


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1st of all, I didn't think either Aaron Jones or Kevin King would be back.  Again, Gute goes left, when I thought right.  

For this mock, I am not going to try to figure out cap space.  As for my free agents, they are mid to lower level free agents that I would like to see the Packers sign.

I will be using fanspeak.com for my mock and thenfldraftnetwork.com for the scouting reports.  Seat back and hopefully you will enjoy this mock.

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Ok guys, work your magic!

 

Outside Free Agents:

Al-Quadin Muhammad

Al- Quadin Muhammad  DL  (Can play across the line)  

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Aldon Smith  Edge  (Why not add another Smith to the brothers?  Could be low cost pass rusher with a little gas left in his tank.)

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Rex Burkhead  RB  (Veteran #3 RB that can help out in the passing game.)

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Dre Kirkpatrick  CB  (Again, another low cost player that could offer a veteran leadership)

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Jadeveon Clowney  Edge  (Maybe not a low to mid free agent, but could add to our defense with the Smith Brothers)

 

2021 Packers Mock Draft.

 

#29.

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Jaycee Horn  CB  South Carolina

 After primarily playing in the slot in 2018, Horn played out wide in 2019 and 2020 where he projects best in the NFL. Horn has a long and stocky frame that is built for competing with X-receivers in the NFL. His size, length, and physicality show up in coverage where he is highly disruptive in press and ultra competitive at the catch point. The concerns with Horn show up primarily as a tackler and playing off-man coverage. Unfortunately, Horn doesn’t play to his weight class as a tackler and there are too many missed tackles on film. Additionally, Horn can be guilty of guessing when mirroring routes, leading to false steps, which is problematic given how segmented his transitions can be in the first place. If used correctly and with development, Horn can be a quality starter, especially if his ball skills continue to progress as they did in 2020. 

Ideal RoleStarting outside corner

#62.

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Jalen Mayfield  T  Michigan

Jalen Mayfield projects as a high-quality starting offensive lineman at the NFL level. He’s got ample size and athleticism to play in space in pass protection and with just two years of starting experience under his belt, Mayfield is only going to continue to get better with more repetitions. Mayfield showed impressive improvement from Year 1 to Year 2 after facing a murderer’s row of pass rushes in his first season as a starter in 2019, having to block top-50 picks Yetur Gross-Matos and Chase Young while also having to handle other prominent pass rushers such as Anfernee Jennings, Jayson Oweh, Shaka Toney, Terrell Lewis, Khalid Kareem, Julian Okwara, and others. Mayfield endured a baptism by fire as a college starter but the physical tools and raw athleticism were undeniable. Complicating Mayfield’s 2021 projection is an even smaller sample size than the abbreviated 2020 Big Ten season—Mayfield played in just two games this season and will enter the pros with 15 starts under his belt at Michigan. But Mayfield was dominant and looked like a much more refined prospect in 2020; so much so that I’m pushing my chips into the table on this one. I think Mayfield is a high-level right tackle prospect who could be trained to switch sides and play on the left or, alternatively, be left to continue to grow on the right side. His athletic profile and build wouldn’t hinder him from a transition to guard either—in case his small sample size of strong play isn’t sustainable and he struggles at the NFL level on the outside. Given his physical skills and the multiple avenues to get on the field, I’m betting Mayfield ends up a big hit in the pros. 

Ideal RoleStarting offensive tackle (could play either side, high-ceiling OG, as well).

#92.

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Jay Tufele  DL  USC

Jay Tufele typically aligns in the 3-technique, but has also aligned in a 4i and the 1-shade in the exposures I graded. He has very good athleticism, as evidenced by his outstanding body quickness and “get off” on the snap. In the run game, he commands a double team due to his ability to disrupt the protection. However, he has shown instances of losing the football and misidentifying blocking schemes. In the passing game, he has explosive hands and typically defeats single blocks. He will get his pad level high which hinders him, to some degree, but this player is explosive, disruptive, and can play on all three downs. 

Ideal Role: He is a three-down IDL for most defensive fronts.

Scheme Fit: Schematic versatility to play in a single-gap penetrating scheme or he can two-gap if necessary.

#135.

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Aaron Robinson  CB  Central Florida

A 4-star recruit that originally committed to Alabama, Aaron Robinson transferred to UCF and became the featured slot cornerback in 2019 and 2020 for the Knights. While he has some experience playing out wide, his best fit at the next level is likely in the slot. Robinson is a versatile defender that can function in both man and zone coverage and he will make the run defense better with his ability to fill and defend the D-gap. Overall, he’s a physical player with quick feet and sufficient athleticism. The concerns with Robinson at the next level are his modest coverage instincts, ordinary ball skills, and proving the tackler he was in 2020 is what he will be moving forward and not the inconsistent finisher he was in 2019. Robinson has the ability to become a featured slot corner in the NFL, but he will need to become more sure of himself in coverage and play the game with better angles. 

Ideal RoleSlot cornerback.

Scheme FitMixed coverages.

#142.

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Talanoa Hufanga  S  USC

Talanoa Hufanga was a versatile defender for the Trojans defense. He is a safety by trade but has aligned in multiple places due to his diverse skill set. He is a violent tackler who seems to enjoy the physical aspect of the game. His mental aptitude allows him to easily align in multiple places. He has made strides in the passing game, evidenced by his four interceptions this season. He is an instinctive player who plays the game with a violent edge. 

Ideal Role: Eventual starting safety.

Scheme Fit: His skill set will allow him the versatility to play in any scheme.

#173.

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.James Hudson  G/T  Cincinnati

Hudson started at left tackle for the Bearcats in 2020 and showcased an exciting skill set. While Hudson is unquestionably raw at the position, his blend of size, length, power, mobility, and aggressiveness makes him an exciting piece of moldable clay to develop. Make no mistake about it, he has considerable work ahead in improving his hand technique, footwork, weight distribution, and timing, but his ceiling is notably high should it all come together. Hudson may not be a contributor early in his career but has the makings of being a starter by Year 3. Despite notable room for growth, Hudson shines when it comes to the “developmental offensive lineman” label and he could pay big dividends for the team that is willing to draft and develop him. 

Ideal RoleDevelopmental offensive tackle.

Scheme FitZone rushing attack.

#178.

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Khyiris Tonga  DL  BYU

Khyiris Tonga aligned as an interior defensive lineman for the BYU defense—they will align sometimes in an odd front, where Tonga will align as the 0-tech. He excels as a run defender. When he plays with good pad level, he is extremely difficult to single block. He needs to become more consistent at disengaging quickly, but he does show the ability to get to the football. He is a player that would be described as “stronger than he is explosive” based on his movement skills. He uses a good bull rush to get home and uses his length to knock down passes when he cannot. 

Ideal Role: Backup IDL.

Scheme Fit: 4-3 NT/DT.

#214.

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JaCoby Stevens  S/LB  LSU

Stevens brings terrific size to the table and he has some impressive reps playing closer to the line of scrimmage where he can function in condensed areas of the field and trigger downhill. In coverage, Stevens is physical and capable of redirecting routes with his willingness to crowd routes and be aggressive. LSU played Stevens all over the defensive formation but his below-average play speed and athleticism restricts the roles he can realistically fill in the NFL. He lacks the range and anticipatory skills to play deeper off the ball. While Stevens’ best qualities are his size and physicality, he doesn’t always perform to his weight class and his enthusiasm in pursuit can disappoint and there are times he is passive when it comes to playing off contact and tackling. Stevens is likely a core special teams player in the NFL that brings some situational value in sub-packages as a nickel/dime linebacker or in short-yardage defense. The other factor to consider is that LSU listed him at 230 pounds but he measured at 216 pounds at the Senior Bowl. If he was in fact 230, that may have contributed to the athletic profile that was revealed on tape and if the reduction in weight increases his mobility then his ceiling could be higher—perhaps even as a developmental starter as a split zone safety. 

Ideal RoleDevelopmental strong safety that frequently plays closer to the line of scrimmage.

Scheme FitZone heavy.\

#220.

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Ihmir Smith-Marsette  WR/RS  Iowa

Iowa wide receiver Ihmir Smith-Marsette can, for the right offense, be quite the steal in the 2021 NFL Draft. Smith-Marsette brings ample speed, return skills, and vertical receiving to the game, and his production at the University of Iowa isn’t necessarily the best indicator or how talented he actually is—especially given that his open targets were much too often left short or hung in the air long enough to draw defenders back into the play. Smith-Marsette brings a track background to the field and it shows. He’s a graceful runner with easy speed and is at his best when he’s charged with stacking defenders vertically. The Hawkeyes did manufacture some touches for Smith-Marsette courtesy of tunnel screens, double reverses, jet motions and touch passes. He was highly productive on a per-touch basis and, despite some of his limitations in functional strength and size, should find success in a vertical passing offense at the next level. It is worth noting that Smith-Marsette was arrested on Nov. 1, 2020 for speeding and operating a vehicle while intoxicated, plus saw his playing career come to an unceremonious end with a celebratory front flip on a touchdown that resulted in an ankle injury that shelved him for the rest of Iowa’s 2020 campaign. 

Ideal Role: Traditional Z-receiver.

Scheme FitVertical passing offense.

#256.

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Tony Fields II  LB/ST  West Virginia

Tony Fields II originally started his career at Arizona and eventually went on to transfer to play his final season at West Virginia. It didn’t take long for him to become the conductor of the Mountaineers defense. As the MIKE, he quickly became the focal point of the defense. A linebacker that deploys a patient game, he has lots of athleticism that helps him become a rangy option in the middle. There are questions about his length, but he has the body control to contort his body to avoid incoming blockers prior to making tackles. A menace when seeing ball locations, he quickly attacks those areas in order to bring ball-carriers down. A likely WILL linebacker on the next level, he has the athleticism and instincts necessary to be a contributor early on into his rookie contract.

Ideal RoleDevelopmental WILL linebacker.

Scheme FitWeak-side LB in an attacking 4-2-5 defense.

UDFA'S

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Quintin Morris  TE  Bowling Green

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Isaiah McKoy  WR  Kent St.

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Grant Stuard  LB/ST  Houston

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Buddy Johnson  LB/ST  Texas A&M

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Spencer Brown  RB/KR  UAB

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James Smith  P  Cincinnati

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Shaun Jolly  CB/ST  Appalachian St.

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Zach Smith  QB  Tulsa

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Viane Moala  NT  Utah

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Jake Curhan  OL  California

 

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Don't you think it is a bit overkill to add Aldon Smith and Jadeveon Clowney when we are looking for ways to get Rashan Gary on the field more often?

 

I love, love, love Jaycee Horn.  I think we have to trade up to get him.  If I had to venture a guess, Mayfield is off the Packers board based on his RAS score.  I also like everything I have heard about Aaron Robinson and Khyiris Tonga.

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Clearly your mock draft demonstrates significant insight into Packer needs and impressive technical skill in composing your pictures and information. After reading it, I thought I had just died and gone to mock draft heaven. Have to agree that to get Horn in the first round we likely will have to trade up. And as much as I would love to get Mayfield at #62, that is just a bridge too far for me--I think he will be gone by early round two. Love the selection of Jay Tufele; I would bet he has a great chance to be our actual pick. As some mocks have Aaron Robinson going in round one, again I will be amazed at getting a player with his abilities in late round four...but strange things happen in every draft. A real strength of your draft decisions is the new names you bring to the table, and the positions are serious problems for next season. Really tremendous effort. Congrats and thanks so much!

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16 hours ago, ThatJerkDave said:

I also like everything I have heard about Aaron Robinson and Khyiris Tonga.

Tonga could easily be Snacks' replacement. He's a wide body that can create piles freeing up Kenny and others along that IDL; Tufele in the 3rd would be excellent value as would the pick of Robinson as well where you have him. 

 

12 hours ago, Gypsy1027 said:

Clearly your mock draft demonstrates significant insight into Packer needs and impressive technical skill in composing your pictures and information. After reading it, I thought I had just died and gone to mock draft heaven. Have to agree that to get Horn in the first round we likely will have to trade up. And as much as I would love to get Mayfield at #62, that is just a bridge too far for me--I think he will be gone by early round two. 

It's why we've gotta go OT immediately, maybe even trade up if Slater starts sliding down the boards. We have a major hole there at the moment. Expect an OT very early and if we have some money for FA's expect a solid veteran to be signed there.

 

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I too like this mock, though some of the values are a bit unrealistic despite some red flags that may push certain prospects down the board such as Hufanga's atrocious 40 time, Robinson's inconsistencies as a tackler, and Hudson's raw abilities. LIS earlier, I'd go OT first, then IDL/CB. 

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It's a no from me regarding Aldon Smith and Clowney.  Especially Clowney.  I'd take Aldon Smith on a near minimum deal after camp.

And I'm not sure where the money is coming to sign any of those guys listed.

Mock draft wise, I'd love a Horn/Mayfield combo.  I find it unrealistic, but I'd love it.

And I really like your work in the mid to later rounds.

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