Mel Kiper 2021 NFL Draft Big Board: Trevor Lawrence, Kyle Pitts Lead Rankings

Tim Daniels@TimDanielsBRFeatured ColumnistMarch 30, 2021

Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence warms up before the Sugar Bowl NCAA college football game against Ohio State Friday, Jan. 1, 2021, in New Orleans. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)
Gerald Herbert/Associated Press

Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence remained the No. 1 overall player on the latest big board from ESPN's Mel Kiper Jr. released Tuesday ahead of the 2021 NFL draft next month. 

Florida tight end Kyle Pitts moved up three spots to No. 2, while Oregon offensive tackle Penei Sewell dropped from the second slot to No. 8.

Here's a look at Kiper's current top 10:

  • 1. Trevor Lawrence, QB, Clemson
  • 2. Kyle Pitts, TE, Florida
  • 3. DeVonta Smith, WR, Alabama
  • 4. Ja'Marr Chase, WR, LSU
  • 5. Jaylen Waddle, WR, Alabama
  • 6. Justin Fields, QB, Ohio State
  • 7. Zach Wilson, QB, BYU
  • 8. Penei Sewell, OT, Oregon
  • 9. Rashawn Slater, OL, Northwestern
  • 10. Alijah Vera-Tucker, OL, USC

The update comes after the early portion of the first round received a shake up Friday with the San Francisco 49ers trading with the Miami Dolphins to acquire the No. 3 pick. Then the Dolphins traded back up to No. 6 in a deal with the Philadelphia Eagles.

It's now likely the first three players off the board will be quarterbacks with Lawrence going to the Jacksonville Jaguars followed by the Jets and Niners picking their signal-caller of choice.

After Lawrence, Fields and Wilson, Kiper has two more QBs in his top 25—Alabama's Mac Jones at No. 12 and Trey Lance of North Dakota State at No. 13.

It's possible quarterback-needy teams could get in contact with the Atlanta Falcons, who own the No. 4 pick, with an eye toward putting themselves in position to select from the large group of coveted QBs.

Meanwhile, Pitts could very well be the first non-quarterback off the board given his potential to become a game-changing player at a tight end position with a limited number of high-end producers. Kiper described him as a "nightmare" to defend.

The 20-year-old Philadelphia native recorded 12 touchdowns in eight games during his final college season at Florida.

Kentucky linebacker Jamin Davis was the other major riser on Kiper's big board, climbing from outside the top 25 to No. 14 on the list. The ESPN draft analyst called him a "rising" prospect who put together some impressive game tape in 2020.

In a year with a limited number of standout linebacker prospects, Davis has started to gain some traction and could ultimately land on the fringe of the top 10.

As a whole, Kiper called the incoming 2021 draft group "one of the most interesting classes ever."