ESPN draft analyst Mel Kiper is back with his latest mock draft and like Todd McShay, he is projecting trades for the first time. Normally Kiper sticks to just 32 picks and keeps it fairly straight forward, but this year’s quarterback class made him realize it was time to waive his traditional no-trade clause.
After Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence goes No. 1 to the Jacksonville Jaguars, Kiper has the Atlanta Falcons trading with the New York Jets in order to select BYU quarterback Zach Wilson with the No. 2 overall pick. He suggests Ohio State quarterback Justin Fields could also be in play, but sees Wilson as “the ideal option for the Falcons.”
The next trade sees the San Francisco 49ers move from No. 12 to No. 7, using the Detroit Lions pick to select Fields. Kiper suggests the 49ers would then designate Jimmy Garoppolo a post-June 1 cut to clear $25 million in cap space.
Kiper mocks Alabama quarterback Mac Jones to the Carolina Panthers at No. 8 before making his final trade. He has the Patriots moving up from No. 15 to No. 9 to select North Dakota State quarterback Trey Lance with the Denver Broncos pick.
McShay offered his own trades but were entirely different from Kiper. He had the Panthers moving up to No. 3 to select Lance and the Bears moving up from No. 20 to No. 12 to select Mac Jones. Trades are difficult to predict with any semblance of accuracy when it comes to the draft given how many moving parts are involved. However, there are always multiple first round trades, and given the number of high profile quarterbacks in this year’s draft, that number could very well increase.