The first round of the 2021 NFL Draft is in the books. There were some surprise picks, some obvious ones, winners and losers abound, and (naturally) a handful of equally bizarre and hilarious moments.
Major networks have spent the last three months going deep in-depth into the very best prospects selected last night, prospects that will change the future of the franchises that chose them for better or for worse. But what about everyone else? Every year there's a handful of prospects selected after the first night of the draft who walk into their new building of employment and make an immediate impact towards the winning ways of the organization.
Last year, for example, Antoine Winfield Jr. (second-round pick) played a critical role on a championship team in Tampa Bay. Michael Onwenu (sixth-round pick) ended up starting most of the season for the New England Patriots. Jeremy Chinn and Johnathon Taylor (both second-rounders) proved themselves invaluable as rookies. There is value to be found in the later rounds.
With all that said, here are some of the best players available on Day 2 of the 2021 NFL Draft, ranked in no particular order.
Day 2 NFL Draft
Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah, LB, Notre Dame
Owusu-Koramoah was a top-15 prospect in this draft who dropped out of the first round. The 2020 Butkus Award winner is a tad undersized (6-foot-1, 211 pounds) but doesn't play like it. He's fast, tested off-the-charts athletically, is elite in coverage and has a knack for getting to the quarterback on blitzes.
Trevon Moehrig, S, TCU
Moehrig is the draft's best safety and somehow dropped out of the first round. He's a ballhawk at 6-foot-1 and 205 pounds, won the Thorpe Award as the nation's best defensive back in 2020 and had seven interceptions with 28 pass breakups in 34 career games. He tested well at his Pro Day, turning in a 4.5-second 40, with a 33-inch vertical. At his size, that's plenty athletic for the NFL.
Elijah Moore, WR, Ole Miss
Elijah Moore is undersized at 5-foot-9 and 185 pounds, but he was really productive in college. He caught 86 passes in 2020 for 1,193 yards while showing toughness, excellent route-running skills and the burst to run away from defenders. He ran a 4.34-second 40 at his Pro Day, showing more than enough speed.
Christian Barmore, DT, Alabama
Barmore is a beast and it's mildly surprising he didn't go in the first. He's big, fast, and powerful, capable of holding down the defensive line in both the run and the pass game. Offensive lines will have to gameplan around this guy.
Davis Mills, QB, Stanford
There's a pretty steep drop-off from the fifth-best QB prospect to the sixth. That would be Mills. The Stanford product has a big arm and the anticipation to throw guys open. He can't move in the pocket very well and there isn't a ton of tape on him.
Teven Jenkins, OT, Oklahoma State
At 6-foot-5 and 317 pounds, Jenkins is a big, physical tackle who could play on either side of the line, or even at guard early in his career. He has played right tackle in college, but his skills translate to the left side as well. At his Pro Day he did 36 reps on the bench and ran a 4.96 40, showing power and decent speed for a man his size.
Asante Samuel Jr., CB, Florida State
The son of Asante Samuel, he possesses his father's traits as a scrappy corner with good man-to-man skills but isn't technically sound and had a big flag problem at Florida State. Physically, he's NFL-ready, but he needs some work.
Rondale Moore, WR, Purdue
Moore was extremely productive at Purdue but his size will be a disadvantage at the next level, as he's only 5-foot-7 and 181 pounds. His quickness and agility is his selling point, but guys that small struggle to make an impact from the slot in the NFL. Still, a creative offensive mind will see the potential.
Sam Cosmi, OT, Texas
Cosmi has the build of a starting left tackle and above-average athleticism for his position while starting for three years at Texas. However, he wasn't asked to do a lot and his mechanics are iffy enough that he's still around in the second round.
Kyle Trask, QB, Florida
Not a lot separates Trask from Davis Mills or Kellen Mond, but Trask looked the best in 2020. He makes the throws when they're there and certainly helped teammate Kyle Pitts make a lot of money by feeding him constantly over the course of the year. Trask just isn't the guy to make a play on his own or throw receivers open, giving him a worryingly low ceiling for a potential Day 2 pick.
Best Players Available NFL Draft
Azeez Ojulari, Edge, Georgia
Ojulari is a bit undersized at 6-foot-2 and 249 pounds, but the redshirt sophomore has plenty of room to grow. At his Pro Day he ran a 4.60 40, while putting up 28 bench press reps. He racked up 8.5 sacks, 12.5 tackles for loss and four forced fumbles in 2020. Ojulari had 38 quarterback pressures in 2019 and 37 in 2020. He can be a menace off of the edge.
Chuba Hubbard, RB, Oklahoma State
Hubbard posted great stats in 2019 but seemed to suffer under more attention from defenses in 2020. He showed he can be a workhorse back but doesn't have the shimmy to break open a big run at the second level and has a bit of a fumbling problem. Probably not a three-down back unless he fixes a few things, but there's talent here.
Javonte Williams, RB, North Carolina
Williams' nickname is "Pookie" so that's really all you need to know. Oh, and he runs defenders over like it's his job. Which I guess it is. Anyway, Williams has the make of a workhorse back who will get the fans on their feet and should be great value as a downhill back with a high ceiling for an RB of his type in the later rounds.
Terrace Marshall, WR, LSU
Marshall is a big wideout at 6-foot-3 and 205 pounds, and has explosive ability after the catch. Despite season-long quarterback issues at LSU, he hauled in 48 catches for 731 yards and 10 touchdowns before opting out after seven games. Marshall showed out at LSU's Pro Day, blazing a 4.38 40 and boasting a 39-inch vertical leap.
Kellen Mond, QB, Texas A&M
The last of the QBs worth mentioning for Day 2, Mond developed into an effective dual-threat passer over several years with the Aggies. When he could play his game and within the flow of the offense, he got it done. Anything other than that and things looked pretty dire. He's a project with an average starter ceiling, but there is something there.
NFL Draft Day 2
Liam Eichenberg, OT, Notre Dame
At 6-foot-6 and 306 pounds, Eichenberg has the size to play tackle in the NFL, but his short arms might portend a move to guard. He should come off the board when the run on O-linemen starts. He shows good technique in pass protection and has the power to move defensive linemen in the run game.
Wyatt Davis, G, Ohio State
Davis is an extremely strong guard who can open up huge holes on the interior of the line. That's what he does best. Everything else needs work. His pass protection technique is decent but a lack of elite athleticism puts a hard cap on exactly how good he can be at the pro level.
Kelvin Joseph, CB, Kentucky
Joseph is an outstanding athlete for a cornerback, with top-tier length and speed to cover receivers like a warm winter coat. But he's lasted this long because he has very little experience and was prone to mistakes that more disciplined players would never come close to making. A project with high upside, but a project all the same.
Tylan Wallace, WR, Oklahoma State
Wallace is a great route runner who plays with an attitude that helps him make up for the fact that he's only 5-foot-11 and played the X receiver role on the outside at Oklahoma State. However, like many college receivers, he didn't see a lot of press coverage and struggled when he did.