Cowboys – Pick 12: (Traded away pick 10 for picks 12 and 84) – Micah Parsons – LB – Penn State
Cowboys Nation was hit with a gut punch when we watched Jaycee Horn and Patrick Surtain II get selected right in front of us with picks 8 and 9. Things then got weird when we were treated to a rare intra-division trade with the Philadelphia Eagles, as we acquired pick 84 in the 3rd round to move back two spots to pick 12 where we snagged LB Micah Parsons from Penn State.
Parsons opted out of the 2020 season so he may have been drafted even higher had he played last year. In 2019 he finished with 109 total tackles, 4 sacks, 5 passes defended, and 5 tackles for loss. He is a freak athlete with a sideline-to-sideline speed that I envision Dan Quinn utilizing in multiple spots on defense, including as a pass rusher on the edge
This trade made a ton of sense for Dallas after the top players at their biggest positional needs were selected right in front of them, and they were still able to come away with the top Linebacker in the draft.
This pick puts a lot of pressure on incumbent starters Jaylon Smith and Leighton Vander Esch.
After regressing last year there were already murmurs of Smith potentially becoming a cap casualty, and while that isn't likely at this time, it could prove to make him expendable if Parsons develops into the player we think he is capable of becoming.
Conversely, while production hasn't been as big of an issue for Vander Esch, availability has been, as he's struggled to stay on the field after his outstanding rookie campaign. Dallas will have to decide on his 5th-year option after this season, so he will need a huge bounce-back season to prove he's worth his 9-million-dollar option next season.
Dallas still has plenty of picks on day two to address their secondary, as they will enter Friday with four more picks within the top 100.
A few names to watch when they step to the podium with pick 44 in the 2nd round are University of Washington's Elijah Molden and University of Oregon's Jevon Holland.
Eagles – Pick 10: (Traded pick 12 and 84 to move up) – Devonta Smith – WR – Alabama
Wide Receiver was an obvious need for the Eagles, and after watching Ja'marr Chase and Jaylen Waddle get picked early they couldn't risk letting Devonta Smith fall to the Giants and made their move up to pick #10.
Smith will reunite with his college teammate Jalen Hurts and line up opposite of 2020 1st-round pick Jalen Reagor to give the young QB two explosive playmakers on the outside.
Smith was one of the most dominant players in the country in 2020 as he hauled in 117 catches for 1,856 yards and 23 touchdowns. He also contributed on special teams with 237 yards and a score on 11 punt returns. Those numbers may be slightly inflated due to the immense amount of talent around him (six University of Alabama players were selected in the 1st round tonight), but there is no denying his big-play ability. Expect the Eagles to get Smith involved early and often as a rookie.
Football Team – Pick 19: Jamin Davis – LB – Kentucky
I was a little shocked to see Washington go with Jamin Davis with OT Christian Darrisaw still on the board, but Ron Rivera has earned the benefit of the doubt when it comes to finding talent on the defensive side of the ball. Davis is a dynamic athlete that made plays all over the field for the Wildcats in 2020, finishing his Jr. year with 102 total tackles with four going for a loss.
Davis should be able to carve his way into playing time quickly after the departure of Kevin Pierre-Louis in free agency, and it wouldn't be a shock to see him seize a three-down role before the end of 2021.
Rivera said that Davis was the top-rated defensive player on his board, and he fills a definite hole on the roster. We all saw how dominant the Washington defense was last year, and they appear to be making a strength stronger with this pick.
Giants – Pick 20: (Traded away pick 11 for pick 20, 164, and a 2022 1st and 4th round pick) – Kadarius Toney – WR – Florida
After the Eagles jumped in front of them to snipe Devonta Smith, the Giants quickly pivoted and made a trade that has to feel like a solid consolation prize.
The QB-needy Chicago Bears gave up quite the haul, including a 1st rounder in 2022 to jump up nine spots to grab their QB of the future, Justin Fields. At pick 20, the Giants selected WR Kadarius Toney from the University of Florida.
Toney is a dual-threat WR that will also contribute to the running game, cut from a similar cloth as Jacksonville's Laviska Shenault. He finished his Sr. year with 984 yards and 10 touchdowns on 70 catches while kicking in 161 yards and another score on 19 carries. On paper, the Giants will enter the 2021 season with a lot more firepower for QB Daniel Jones to work after adding Toney, Kenny Golladay, and Saquon Barkley recently being given the green light for week one.