Matt Miller believes Alabama football will dominate the NFL Draft.
It’s never too early for the start of NFL Draft season. One of the many milestones in the draft season is reading Matt Miller’s first mock draft, which came out this Labor Day weekend. This edition was filled to the brim with Alabama football players, including seven selections in the first round.
This article won’t include every Tide pick in Miller’s mock. For that, go to Bleacher Report and read the article itself. However, here are some highlights that Crimson Tide fans need to see.
Jaylen Waddle is first Tide player selected
There are plenty of candidates to be the first Alabama football player picked in the 2021 NFL Draft. Miller has Waddle coming off the board at No. 9 overall to the Detroit Lions. Matt Stafford desperately needs help on offense, and Waddle could be an instant impact player in the NFC North. Waddle can also help out with punt returns.
Najee Harris is RB1
There are plenty of great running backs in the 2021 NFL Draft class. Travis Etienne, Chuba Hubbard and Najee Harris will all be competing this year to be the best running back. Matt Miller predicts that Najee will win that title as a top-20 pick for the Pittsburgh Steelers. The Steelers haven’t committed to James Conner longterm, and they likely won’t. Because of that, look for them to draft a running back somewhere in 2021. Najee Harris is a unicorn, and he’d thrive behind Pittsburgh’s offensive line.
Christian Barmore slides into the first round
Many are predicting a breakout season by Christian Barmore, and it will take that for him to make his way into the first round. However, the formula is there. Barmore could have a jump like Quinnen Williams did. If so, watch out for him to receive draft buzz early.
DeVonta Smith pairs up with Tua
Miami needs more talent around Tua on offense, and many expect them to draft a wide receiver early. Depending on where they draft, both DeVonta Smith and Jaylen Waddle will be candidates. In this mock draft, Miller has Miami taking Smitty to pair up with Tua. This connection was fruitful for Alabama football, including a game-winning catch in the National Championship their freshman year.
Miller’s mock draft includes three rounds of picks, and he will continue to put out mock drafts throughout the NFL season. Although it’s unrealistic to expect seven players from one school to be drafted in the first round, this mock speaks to the talent in Tuscaloosa this college football season.