Triaphilia is the official name of the superstition that bad things do come in threes. D.K. Metcalf, Justin Jefferson and now Kyle Pitts, Super Bowl contending franchises do not allow this pattern to get this far. I predict Pitts to be available at pick 6, mock drafts are always trumped by the most important position in football, and several teams need a starting quarterback. Without the normal combines and pro days, the trade talk discussions are increasing, first round trades have already been made and there are several more to come.
I see a record setting ‘four quarterbacks’ taken in succession to begin the 2021 NFL Draft. Despite internal discussions for the Atlanta Falcons to use the 4th pick overall on a quarterback, they will ultimately trade down, load up on assets and elect to take a future signal caller on day 2, where a guy like David Mills from Stanford could learn from veteran Matt Ryan. I see Atlanta trading down in the draft for a few reasons. The first is having Tom Brady in their division who has several years on Matt Ryan. It’s not only the Tampa Bay Buccaneers riding the coat tails of an older veteran quarterback, the Saints did so with Brees until his retirement this past offseason, the Steelers are doing so with Big Ben and the Colts made the attempt last season with Rivers. There is also the changes occurring in the NFC South, the Panthers and Saints will have new starting quarterbacks in 2021, both technically on a one-year deal. There is no reason for the Falcons to move on from Ryan, they have offensive pieces in place and their defense played respectively after firing Dan Quinn last season. The Falcons need to add youth to their roster as they have their own salary cap issues. After answering calls from several teams inquiring about a trade, the Falcons can turn their attention to players at #9 after their trade with the Denver Broncos. The Falcons At #9 can select one of the top two cornerbacks or elect to dip back into the Alabama receiving pool to replenish the vacancy left by veteran Julio Jones who will have a new home in the AFC with a team like the Patriots or Colts before the start of training camp.
The Broncos drafted wide receivers Jerry Jeudy and K.J. Hamler with consecutive picks to start the 2020 draft, they have veteran running back Melvin Gordon, and opened their pockets to sure up the defensive secondary in free agency. John Elway is exhausted from years of finding a replacement to Peyton Manning, and has bared witness to the youth movement at quarterback in the division with Patrick Mahomes and Justin Herbert. The Broncos will have their choice of Justin Fields or Mac Jones with the San Francisco 49ers electing to go with the athletic upside of Trey Lance at pick #3.
Could the Cincinnati Bengals draft Kyle Pitts? They certainly could, but Ja’Marr Chase is going to the Cincinnati at pick #5. Reuniting quarterback Joe Burrow with his former teammate under new tiger stripes is one way to keep the face of the franchise smiling. (It will also keep fantasy football owners smiling who pair these two in the later rounds of their draft). The Bengals invested a 2019 2nd round pick on tight-end Drew Sample and could always nab Hunter Long out of Boston College this year in the 2nd round if they feel they need to upgrade at the position group. Penei Sewell is a franchise left tackle and will be hard to pass up, but the Bengals were thinking the same about Jonah Williams selecting him 11th overall in 2019. The Bengals depending on their comfort at tight-end could address the future at the offensive tackle position with veteran Riley Reiff only guaranteed a paycheck in 2021 and offensive tackle being a well stocked position group, day one starters will be selected in the third and fourth rounds.
When the Miami Dolphins select Kyle Pitts at the Eagles former #6 pick, it’s going to sting; however the real pain will be watching the weekly highlights and picturing how it would have all looked sporting the midnight green.