2021 NFL Draft Rumors: Stanford QB Davis Mills Could Be Picked in 1st Round

Tim Daniels@@TimDanielsBRFeatured Columnist IVApril 8, 2021

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The latest "buzz" surrounding Stanford quarterback Davis Mills reportedly suggests he could be selected in the first round of the 2021 NFL draft.

Peter Schrager of the NFL Network reported Thursday that Mills will "most likely" be the sixth quarterback drafted after Clemson's Trevor Lawrence, BYU's Zach Wilson, Alabama's Mac Jones, Ohio State's Justin Fields and North Dakota State's Trey Lance.

Mills arrived at Stanford with a lot of hype as the top-rated pro-style quarterback in the 2017 college football recruiting class.

A lot of question marks remain, however, as he appeared in just 14 games across four years with the Cardinal. After a redshirt year, he spent the next season-and-a-half as the backup to K.J. Costello before taking over the offense midway through 2019.

The 6'4'', 225-pound Atlanta native was the team's starter for 2020, but the campaign was shortened to six games because of the coronavirus pandemic, and he missed one contest because of COVID-19 protocols.

In all, Mills completed 65.5 percent of his throws for 3,468 yards, 18 touchdowns and eight interceptions in 14 college games (11 starts).

His limited amount of playing time combined with a star-studded quarterback class has led him to fly under the radar leading up to the draft, which kicks off April 29, but he's confident his ability can stack up well against any of the other signal-callers, per Jason Butt of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

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"I think I can compete with those top guys," Mills said. "I have full confidence in my ability to go out there and win games and compete at the next level. Something I bring to the table is really just the mental side of football. Getting prepared each and every week and attacking the weaknesses in the opponents and really having a high level of understanding of defenses and even running my own offense."

It's not uncommon for a team to trade into the latter part of the first round to grab a quarterback. The Baltimore Ravens did it in 2018 to take Lamar Jackson, and that's worked out quite well.

A team could attempt something similar with Mills after the initial flurry of quarterbacks coming off the board during the first half of the opening round.

He probably won't be a Week 1 starter like Lawrence, Wilson and Co., but he could make an impact later in his rookie year depending on which team grabs him in the draft.