The NFL offseason is already off to a wild start. After Matthew Stafford was traded just weeks ago, another big-name quarterback has been shipped off. The Philadelphia Eagles parted ways with quarterback Carson Wentz, trading him to the Indianapolis Colts in exchange for a 2021 third-round pick and a conditional 2022 second-round pick.
This trade does possibly foreshadow what the Philadelphia Eagles might be planning to do in the 2021 NFL Draft. Up to this point, many analysts were predicting that Philadelphia would draft a playmaker with the sixth-overall pick. Oftentimes, Philly was mocked receivers like Devonta Smith and JaMarr Chase. But now, mock drafts predict the Eagles will select a quarterback with the sixth overall pick.
For the New York Giants, this is exciting news. General manager Dave Gettleman and co-owner John Mara both made the same promise at their post-season press conferences. They promised that the Giants would acquire playmakers and upgrade their offense this offseason. New York is very likely to target a wide receiver at eleven overall in the 2021 NFL Draft.
There are three wide receivers projected to go in the top ten this year. However, some think that one of these prospects will slip outside of the top ten and fall into New York’s lap at eleven. The likelihood of that happen may have just increased due to the Carson Wentz trade.
Why a receiver might fall to eleven overall
The Philadelphia Eagles’ Carson Wentz trade today indicates one of two things: Philly is either ready to find a new quarterback, or they are ready to build around Jalen Hurts. In 2020, Hurts had some decent performances, but he did not establish himself as a franchise quarterback. As the Eagles hold the sixth overall pick in this year’s draft, they will probably have the opportunity to draft one of this year’s top quarterback prospects.
One more team taking a quarterback means one less team taking a wide receiver. Add in a few teams likely to target defenders or offensive linemen, and the likelihood of an offensive playmaker falling to the Giants at eleven is increasing.
Additionally, fans may be expecting a bit too much from the wide receivers in this year’s draft class. Those top three, Smith, Waddle, and Chase, are incredible prospects. They are all top-ten talents. But last year, Jerry Jeudy, CeeDee Lamb, and Henry Ruggs III were also top-ten talents. None of them were selected within the top ten picks in the 2020 NFL Draft.
The first receiver in 2020 was selected with the eleventh overall pick. These premiere receiving talents fell down the draft board because the draft class was loaded with wide receiver talent. Teams knew they could find talented wideouts in the later rounds. Once again, 2021 is a loaded wide receiver class, deep in talent well beyond the first round. This could cause wide receivers to fall in the first round once again.
The New York Giants have plenty of enticing options to choose from with the eleventh overall pick in 2021. But if they want to target an offensive weapon with that pick, they will be holding their breath, hoping one of the top prospects takes a tumble on draft day.