NFC South Draft Needs

NFC South Draft Needs

The NFC South was an underwhelming division this past season. The Buccaneers and Saints were the class of the division. The Panthers basically played for draft capital after an injury forced Christian McCaffrey to miss the rest of the season. The Falcons are who we thought they were to quote the late Dennis Green. The needs of the Panthers and Falcons are glaring, but the actual pick may surprise you. I’m not sure if this is how the draft will shake out, but these players are who I think each team should select in the 2021 NFL Draft.

New Orleans Saints (12-4 1st Place in Division)

As I have previously mentioned Drew Brees has decided to hang up his cleats. What will the Saints do at quarterback in 2021? They have Taysom Hill and Jameis Winston currently on their roster. More importantly Emmanuel Sanders decided to leave New Orleans this past offseason. So, I believe that the Saints will continue to surround Hill or Winston with more receivers. The pick here will be Florida Gators wide receiver, Kadarious Toney. 

Tampa Bay Buccaneers (11-4 2nd Place in Division)

By now we all know the Buccaneers won the Super Bowl and will be the favorites to win the division. The Buccaneers returned every free agent on the defensive side, which was the staple of their postseason run. The defense ranked first in stopping the run and the secondary continued to get better each game of the 2020 NFL season. The Buccaneers could surprise everyone and draft the heir-apparent to Tom Brady. This could lead to Florida Gators quarterback, Kyle Trask. Personally, I think the Buccaneers will continue to bolster the defensive front. They will pick Alabama Crimson Tide Defensive Tackle, Christian Barmore.

Carolina Panthers (5-11 3rd Place in Division)

The Panthers made headlines a few weeks ago trading for New York Jets quarterback, Sam Darnold. What is even more impressive is that they have been able to keep the 8th Pick in the Draft. The Darnold move does create some animosity in the room with the Panthers already having Teddy Bridgewater. They will also get MVP Candidate Christian McCaffrey back this season, so where does that leave the Panthers at No. 8? They need to address their offensive line. The Panthers will make a trade to move up into the top five slots to select Oregon Ducks Offensive Lineman Penei Sewell. 

Atlanta Falcons (4-12 4th in Division)

The Falcons find themselves in the same predicament the Buccaneers will be facing. The Falcons have a franchise quarterback that is still playing at a high level, so do they make the move to bring in one of the top prospects of the position? The Falcons have seemingly wasted Julio Jones’ final years with their inability to close out games over the past few seasons. They have a young defense that continues to get better. Matt Ryan is still playing at an extremely high level. The problem is their offensive line can’t block anyone. The Saints and Buccaneers have elite pass rushers, which makes me wonder if we don’t get the surprise pick of the NFL Draft at Number 4. The Falcons should select Northwestern Offensive Lineman Rashawn Slater. This extends Matt Ryan’s career and allows for the Falcons to be a threat in the division for the next several years. The pick won’t be popular for the fan base, but it is the correct pick for the Falcons. 

So, there you have it. These are the biggest needs of every team in the NFC South and how I think they will fill them. The Falcons and Panthers have the most holes to fill, but these picks could make a huge difference in the 2021 NFL season. We will continue to monitor all of the NFL Mock Drafts out there, but in my opinion each of these picks make their respective teams better. The division won’t be the best in football by any means, but these picks could make things very interesting. 



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