A Justin Fields disaster for the Chicago Bears and another dominant display from wide receiver Ja’Marr Chase within the Cincinnati Bengals offense headlined rookie performances in Week 3 of the 2021 NFL season. Trevor Lawrence and the Jacksonville Jaguars continue to struggle, while the likes of Kadarius Toney and Kyle Pitts remain largely missing in action.
Here’s how all 32 first-round rookies have fared so far.
Note: Ranks are among all rookies at each position, and some grades are vulnerable to small sample sizes early in the season.
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PICK NO. 1: QB Trevor Lawrence, Jacksonville Jaguars
Overall Rookie Grade: 46.6 (Rank: 5/6)
Week 3 Grade: 50.2
Another three turnover-worthy plays in Week 3 from Lawrence, who extends his lead over the rest of the NFL in that dubious honor. He continues to flash enough impressive plays to keep you invested in his long-term success and upside, but the low end is extremely poor. His average depth of target has come down, but it's still a top-five mark among all NFL quarterbacks, and the Jaguars' offense simply isn’t giving him enough layups in between needing big plays. This is a bumpy beginning to life in the NFL, although it's not time to panic just yet.
PICK NO. 2: QB Zach Wilson, New York Jets
Overall Rookie Grade: 56.9 (Rank: 2/6)
Week 3 Grade: 55.4
Wilson and Trevor Lawrence are tied for the league lead with seven interceptions each, but while Lawrence is also leading the league in turnover-worthy plays, Wilson has seen some misfortune result in some of his turnovers. This week, he had two picks, and though one was a poor decision, the other was a pass that hit his receiver in the hands and should have been a positive play. Wilson had four drops this week and was sacked five times as his offensive line struggled to give him the time needed.
PICK NO. 3: QB Trey Lance, San Francisco 49ers
Overall Rookie Grade: 50.4 (Rank: 3/6)
Week 3 Grade: N/A
With Green Bay’s defense falling for a Jared Goff keeper on a read-option look last week, it seemed obvious that Trey Lance would get a big workload to test whether the Packers fixed their defensive assignments. Two snaps was it for Lance. One of them was a touchdown, and with Jimmy Garoppolo struggling late in the game, it might have made sense to see more from Lance. Regardless, the 49ers appear content with barely featuring their future.