The only certainty about the NFL draft year after year is the uncertainty.
The media can make all the mock drafts they want, but there are bound to be a lot of surprises.
Just last year, the Raiders took Damon Arnette out of Ohio State with the 19th overall pick when most expected him to go in the second or third round.
These front offices do not listen to the media nor do they tell the media much when it comes to draft time.
They do their own due diligence and they like to keep their thoughts as private as possible.
Here are 2 NFL draft prospects that could go higher than expected.
1. Kwity Paye- Edge Rusher (Michigan)
"[He] presents problems for any offensive lineman that he faces."
— NFL (@NFL) April 4, 2021
After quarterback, edge rusher is arguably the most valuable position in the NFL.
Unfortunately for teams looking for edge rushers at the beginning of the first round, there is no Chase Young or Nick Bosa-type talents, but if a team likes Kwity Paye they will have no problem drafting a guy who they think could be a franchise cornerstone rushing the passer.
Paye is an absolute freak athlete for being 6’5″ and 265 pounds; I think he barely scratched the surface of his potential during his days in Ann Arbor.
Compared to other pass rushers of his talent, Michigan did not exactly let him loose.
They included him on a lot of stunts and ran a lot of blitzes because they run so much man-coverage.
While he is not the most refined prospect, he has improved his technique in the last year which is a good sign.
Any defensive coordinator would love to add someone with Paye’s natural ability; if he is placed in the right situation he could turn into a premier pass rusher.
If a team believes they are that situation and they feel that they really need pass rush help then I could see him jumping into the top ten, possibly to the Panthers or the Cowboys.
2. Teven Jenkins- Offensive Tackle (Oklahoma State)
TEVEN JENKINS 36 REPS💪
— PFF Draft (@PFF_College) April 1, 2021
If you do not think that edge is the most important non-QB position in the NFL then you must think that it is offensive tackle.
Recency bias is a real thing and we just saw the almighty Patrick Mahomes and the rest of the Chiefs offense get completely embarrassed without their two starting tackles.
Mahomes had no time to throw which meant very few opportunities to utilize his incredible arm talent.
Even with the best quarterback in the league, the best weapons, and the best play-caller in the league they could not reach double-digit points in the super bowl without their starting tackles.
If a team like the Chargers or Vikings likes Jenkins better than Christian Darrisaw or Alijah Vera-Tucker then they will not hesitate to pull the trigger in the top 15.
A reliable left tackle is really hard to find and is well worth a first-round pick.
Not only can he pass protect, but he has really good size and has a mean streak to him.
As evidenced in last year’s draft quarterbacks and offensive tackles are almost always taken higher than expected.NEXT: Could The Chicago Bears Trade With The Falcons For A QB?