News & Analysis

2021 NFL Draft: PFF's Top 100 Big Board

The 2020 college football season is not one that will soon be forgotten. In fact, it will easily go down as one of the most unusual on record. But now it’s NFL draft season.

With the 2021 NFL Scouting Combine and pro days once again threatened, there will be more uncertainty than any recent year. Let’s let the tape remain king as we unveil PFF’s initial postseason top 100.

  1. Trevor Lawrence, QB, Clemson

    Three straight seasons of grades over 90.0. What sets Lawrence apart in a loaded quarterback class is how quickly he sees the game. He is the only quarterback who has played 200 snaps against the blitz over the last three years and has graded over 90.0 on those snaps.

  2. Zach Wilson, QB, BYU

    Wilson possesses special arm talent and performed at an equally special level this past season. His lowest grade of the season still came in at 76.1.

  3. Justin Fields, QB, Ohio State

    Fields has had his hiccups this year, but don’t let that make you think he’s not an elite prospect in his own right. His blend of accuracy, arm talent and running ability doesn’t come along every year.

  4. Penei Sewell, T, Oregon

    At 19 years old, Sewell had the single highest graded season we’ve ever seen from a Power 5 offensive tackle. Who knows what he could become when his body is fully developed?

  5. Ja'Marr Chase, WR, LSU

    Chase was doing what DeVonta Smith is doing this year when he was 19 years old, and he was doing it against guys like A.J. Terrell and Trevon Diggs, who are currently the best starters on their respective teams. His 24 deep catches that year is still the most we’ve seen in a single season.

  6. Micah Parsons, LB, Penn State

    The Penn State linebacker earned the second-highest run-defense grade we’ve ever given to a true sophomore. What the 240-plus-pounder can do as a blitzer is going to be a weapon in the NFL.

  7. Jaylen Waddle, WR, Alabama

    The “other” Alabama receiver is a freak athlete in his own right. If you extrapolated his four games out to a full season, he’d have gone for 75 catches, 1,671 yards and 12 scores.

  8. DeVonta Smith, WR, Alabama

    The Heisman Trophy winner. People will point to his frame and weight (175 pounds), but until someone can give me some examples on tape of it being an issue, I’m not too worried.

  9. Kyle Pitts, TE, Florida

    I’m no fan of drafting tight ends early, but calling Pitts a tight end is selling him short. If he were solely a receiver, Pitts would be in this range because of his ability to beat one-on-one coverage.

  10. Trey Lance, QB, North Dakota State

    The tools are prodigious. Offensive coordinators must salivate watching him flick it 60-plus yards downfield one play then outrun a safety on the next. But with just one season in a run-heavy offense against FCS competition, Lance is still a massive project as a passer.

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  11. Kwity Paye, EDGE, Michigan

    Paye has everything you could want physically to be an every-down problem in the NFL. While he never put it altogether at Michigan, he’s shown he can take to coaching and has made strides every single year.

  12. Rashawn Slater, T, Northwestern

    Slater allowed all of five pressures back in 2019 before opting out in 2020. At only 6-foot-3, he may get stuck inside, but we think he’s more than athletic enough to hang on the edge.

  13. Caleb Farley, CB, Virginia Tech

    He’s got the size and speed part of the position down pat and was pretty darn good at the coverage part when we last saw him in 2019. He allowed a passer rating of only 26.8 that season.

  14. Gregory Rousseau, EDGE, Miami (FL)

    Yet another opt-out. Rousseau has the tools to be a top-five pick, but it’s hard to bank on him after only one year of college football. His absurd length and versatility will be a selling point for teams.

  15. Christian Barmore, DI, Alabama

    After a slow start to the season, Barmore turned it on at the end of the year. His performances against Notre Dame in the College Football Playoff Semifinal and against Ohio State in the National Championship were two of the most impressive we saw from a defensive tackle all season.

  16. Christian Darrisaw, T, Virginia Tech

    Darrisaw turned in the second-highest-graded season from a Power 5 tackle in a massive breakout 2020 season. He’s an easy people-mover that few are going through.

  17. Patrick Surtain II, CB, Alabama

    You won’t find a better combination of size, length and technique in the draft. All Surtain doesn’t have is the high-end speed you’d like when drafting a corner early.

  18. Rashod Bateman, WR, Minnesota

    Bateman can get off the line of scrimmage with ease then beat you with either his shake or his size. One of the best route-runners in college football, Bateman led the country in yards per route run from an outside alignment as a sophomore in 2019.

  19. Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah, LB, Notre Dame

    The Butkus Award winner for the nation’s best linebacker. JOK has elite short-area quicks for a linebacker, and while 215 pounds may seem tiny, it’s the same weight that Darius Leonard played at this season for the Colts.

  20. Jayson Oweh, EDGE, Penn State

    Oweh can do things physically that other edge rushers can only dream of. With reported 4.3 speed, he can play both ends of an option play with ease. The Penn State product took a massive step forward this season as a run defender in his first season as a starter, earning an 89.8 grade in the process.

  21. Nick Bolton, LB, Missouri

    Bolton won’t tick every box physically, but this is a guy you want in the middle of your defense. He led the SEC in defensive stops in each of the past two seasons.

  22. Trevon Moehrig, S, TCU

    At 6-foot-2, 202 pounds, Moehrig has a lot of prototypical physical tools for the position, and they’ve translated to the field. He led all college safeties in pass breakups in each of the past two seasons.

  23. Jaycee Horn, CB, South Carolina

    Horn has the athleticism and mindset of a man corner at the NFL level — he’s not going to back down from anyone. He allowed only eight catches from 24 targets for 116 yards across seven games this year.

  24. Kadarius Toney, WR, Florida

    He’s neck and neck with the man two spots down from him on this list when it comes to owning the title of “the most dangerous player in the draft with the ball in his hands.” Toney's balance, flexibility and explosion are exceptional. He’s broken 32 tackles on 80 catches over the past two seasons.

    Dec 19, 2020; Atlanta, Georgia, USA; Florida Gators wide receiver Kadarius Toney (1) catches a touchdown pass against Alabama Crimson Tide defensive back Malachi Moore (13) during the first quarter in the SEC Championship at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. Credit: Adam Hagy-USA TODAY Sports
  25. Azeez Ojulari, EDGE, Georgia

    Ojulari was one of the biggest risers with his play in 2020. He’s the best pure speed rusher in the class and will threaten the edge against even the most athletic tackles in the league. He finished his redshirt sophomore season with a 91.7 pass-rushing grade.

  26. Rondale Moore, WR, Purdue

    Moore never got a chance to prove that he can win as an outside receiver, but he’s shown more than enough from the slot to be a first-rounder. He led all receivers in broken tackles as a freshman in 2018.

  27. Teven Jenkins, T, Oklahoma State

    Jenkins was a full-grown man on the right side for the Cowboys. You won’t have to watch too many plays before finding a rep of him putting a defender in the turf. He allowed only four pressures on 211 pass-blocking snaps this season.

  28. Carlos Basham Jr., EDGE, Wake Forest

    Basham had a bit of a down year, but he notched 112 pressures in the two seasons prior. He’s a burly 285-pound edge who should be a pocket-pusher for years to come.

  29. Mac Jones, QB, Alabama

    There’s not one play or throw from Jones that will make you go “wow,” but play in and play out he’ll get the ball where it needs to go on time. While not super toolsy, his command of the offense and position is impressive.

  30. Alijah Vera Tucker, IOL, USC

    Vera-Tucker’s quality play at tackle this past season made us feel even better about him on the inside. He earned an 81.8 overall grade and showed some fantastic ability to play in space.

  31. Zaven Collins, LB, Tulsa

    At 6-foot-4, 260 pounds, Collins isn’t your typical off-ball linebacker prospect. He dominates backs in blitz pickup and can chase them down in space, as well. His 91.1 overall grade this past season led all linebackers in college football.

  32. Wyatt Davis, IOL, Ohio State

    Davis hasn’t been quite as consistent in 2020 as he was in 2019, but the talent is obviously still there. He’s allowed four sacks and hits combined over the past two seasons.

    Sep 12, 2020; Austin, Texas, USA; Texas Longhorns offensive lineman Samuel Cosmi (52) prepares to block Texas El Paso Miners defensive lineman Praise Amaewhule (23) in the first half at Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Scott Wachter-USA TODAY Sports
  33. Samuel Cosmi, T, Texas

    Cosmi has been one of the most tested tackles in the country and has improved every single year of his career. He allowed all of eight pressures on 368 pass-blocking snaps this past season.

  34. Asante Samuel Jr., CB, Florida St.

    Samuel was arguably college football's smoothest athlete at the position. He allowed only 179 yards in eight games and allowed a passer rating of only 46.2.

  35. Alex Leatherwood, T, Alabama

    Leatherwood is one of the best run-blockers in the country but still gives up the edge too much to be considered a first-rounder. He allowed 15 pressures this year after only allowing 10 in 2019.

  36. Jaelan Phillips, EDGE, Miami (FL)

    Phillips' injury history will have to be thoroughly vetted, as he retired from the game altogether in 2018 due to concussions. Healthy and on a Miami line that allowed him the freedom to attack, Phillips showed why he was once a five-star recruit. He racked up 36 pressures over his final seven games.

  37. Travis Etienne, RB, Clemson

    Etienne didn’t have his best season on the ground but reinvented himself as a vertical receiver. His 90.9 receiving grade and 588 receiving yards led all FBS running backs.

  38. Walker Little, T, Stanford

    Little has played all of one game since 2018. There’s no reason why he couldn’t be a quality NFL tackle, given his physical tools, but he’s so far removed from playing the game that it’s difficult to assess.

  39. Tyson Campbell, CB, Georgia

    Campbell is an ultra-smooth athlete who is still only scratching the surface of what he could be. Zone teams will love the fact that he’s missed only six tackles on 99 attempts in his career.

    Nov 7, 2020; University Park, Pennsylvania, USA; Maryland Terrapins linebacker Ayinde Eley (16) breaks up a pass intended for Penn State Nittany Lions tight end Pat Freiermuth (87) during the second quarter at Beaver Stadium. Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports
  40. Pat Freiermuth, TE, Penn State

    Freiermuth isn’t your dynamic field-stretcher, but he should dominate the middle of the field with his size and ball skills. He was a focal point of the Penn State offense in his four games this season, recording 23 catches on 37 targets for 310 yards.

  41. Ar'Darius Washington, S, TCU

    At 5-foot-8, 179 pounds, Washington is not going to fit your prototype at the position. Still, he’s the most instinctive safety in the entire draft class. He allowed all of 157 yards in his coverage over two seasons as a starter.

  42. Hamsah Nasirildeen, S, Florida State

    At 6-foot-4, 220 pounds, Nasirildeen could easily be viewed as a linebacker in the NFL, as well. He’ll be a tight end eraser either way. An ACL tear suffered at the end of the 2019 season will still need to be vetted, however, as we only saw him for two games in 2020.

  43. Kyle Trask, QB, Florida

    The stats are out of this world, but the two men from Florida above Trask on this list are a big reason why. His relative lack of production outside the pocket and his performance against Oklahoma in the bowl game will be big knocks on him.

  44. Chazz Surratt, LB, North Carolina

    Surratt only switched from quarterback to linebacker a couple of years ago. After all too often looking like a super athletic fish out of water in 2019, Surratt finally looked like a true every-down linebacker down the stretch in 2020. He only missed three tackles on 68 attempts over his final seven games.

  45. Alim McNeil, DI, N.C. State

    McNeil has the potential to be the holy grail — a nose tackle who can rush the passer. He’s got one of the best first steps in the entire draft class even though he weighs 320 pounds. He earned grades of 80.8 and 77.5 as a pass-rusher the past two seasons — mostly from a true 0-tech alignment.

  46. Jackson Carman, T, Clemson

    While Carman has been a bit up and down over the past two seasons, evaluators will keep coming back to his tape against Ohio State this year. On 49 pass-blocking snaps — most coming when Clemson obviously had to pass in the second half — against two NFL-caliber defensive ends, Carman allowed all of one pressure.

  47. Elijah Molden, CB, Washington

    Molden is another guy who won’t win any weigh-in but has the type of game that’s difficult to poke holes in. He allowed only 11 catches for 65 yards across 18 targets in four games this past season.

  48. Andre Cisco, S, Syracuse

    Cisco is a straight-up roller coaster at the safety position. With 4.3 speed, Cisco had 26 combined picks and pass breakups in 24 career games. He also gave up six touchdowns in nine games in 2019 before tearing his ACL two games into 2020.

  49. Liam Eichenberg, T, Notre Dame
    Liam Eichenberg has been one of the steadiest left tackles in college football over the past two seasons. He’s allowed only 27 pressures on over 900 pass-blocking snaps in that span. He may not wow with his perceived “upside”, but he’s technically sound at the position.
  50. Levi Onwuzurike, DI, Washington

  51. Amon-Ra St. Brown, WR, USC

  52. Payton Turner, EDGE, Houston

  53. Terrace Marshall, WR, LSU

  54. Tylan Wallace, WR, Oklahoma St.

  55. Jevon Holland, S, Oregon

  56. Joseph Ossai, EDGE, Texas

  57. Javonte Williams, RB, North Carolina

  58. Landon Dickerson, IOL, Alabama

  59. Greg Newsome, CB, Northwestern

  60. Kingsley Enagbare, EDGE, South Carolina

  61. Marvin Wilson, DI, Florida State

  62. Joe Tryon, EDGE, Washington

  63. Rashad Weaver, EDGE, Pittsburgh

  64. Elijah Moore, WR, Ole Miss

  65. Jalen Mayfield, T, Michigan

  66. Tay Gowan, CB, UCF

  67. Daviyon Nixon, DI, Iowa

  68. Najee Harris, RB, Alabama

  69. Shaun Wade, CB, Ohio State

  70. Sage Surratt, WR, Wake Forest

  71. Paris Ford, S, Pittsburgh

  72. Creed Humphrey, IOL, Oklahoma

  73. Roger McCreary, CB, Auburn

  74. Michael Carter, RB, North Carolina

  75. Tyler Shelvin, DI, LSU

  76. Monty Rice, LB, Georgia

  77. Tommy Togiai, DI, Ohio State

  78. Kenneth Gainwell, RB, Memphis

  79. Brady Christensen, T, BYU

  80. Jabril Cox, LB, LSU

  81. Tyreke Smith, EDGE, Ohio State

  82. Abraham Lucas, T, Washington St.

  83. Brenton Cox Jr., EDGE, Florida

  84. Jamie Newman, QB, Georgia

  85. Khalil Herbert, RB, Virginia Tech

  86. Cameron McGrone, LB, Michigan

  87. Eric Stokes, CB, Georgia

  88. Brevin Jordan, TE, Miami (FL)

  89. Jaelon Darden, WR, North Texas

  90. Shakur Brown, CB, Michigan State

  91. Dylan Moses, LB, Alabama

  92. Ben Cleveland, IOL, Georgia

  93. Trey Smith, IOL, Tennessee

  94. Trey Sermon, RB, Ohio State

  95. Richie Grant, S, UCF

  96. Ventrell Miller, LB, Florida

  97. Baron Browning, LB, Ohio State

  98. Chuba Hubbard, RB, Oklahoma State

  99. Demetric Felton, RB, UCLA

  100. Quincy Roche, EDGE, Miami (Fla.)

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