All-2021 Draft Defense

You know what they say, defense wins championships. The 2021 NFL Draft is less than a month away and it’s time to get familiar with the best of the best from this class. There may not be a Myles Garrett or a Chase Young who is a clear generational prospect, but there are plenty of high ceiling players who can change the identity of the defense they join. Let’s get to know the best at their positions.

EVANSTON, IL – SEPTEMBER 29: Michigan Wolverines defensive lineman Kwity Paye (19) celebrates his sack in the 2nd quarter during a college football game between the Michigan Wolverines and the Northwestern Wildcats on September 29, 2018, at Ryan Field in Evanston, IL. (Photo by Daniel Bartel/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)


University of Michigan

6’4″ 271 lbs

Paye is one of the many high ceiling guys on this list. He has incredible athletic talent and could be come a true force off the edge in the NFL. He is best fit to play with his hand in the dirt and will use his great strength as the basis of his play style at the next level.

Pro Comparison: Frank Clark

Alabama defensive lineman Christian Barmore (58) celebrates a sack against Western Carolina during the first half of an NCAA college football game, Saturday, Nov. 23, 2019, in Tuscaloosa, Ala. (AP Photo/Vasha Hunt)


University of Alabama

6’5″ 311 lbs

Christian Barmore is the best defensive tackle in the class by a pretty decent margin. His pass rush upside from the three technique position is tremendous. His tape from the end of the 2020 season is art. If Barmore can get more consistent in the NFL, he’ll be a consistent 8-10 sack player.

Pro Comparison: DeForest Buckner


University of Washington

6’3″ 293 lbs

The former Washington Husky is an undersized three technique who opted out of the 2020 season. He put some great tape on film and has the tools to succeed in the NFL. Opting out helped his stock out and he should be taken early on day two.

Pro Comparison: Sheldon Richardson


University of Miami

6’5″ 266 lb

Jaelan Phillips is one of the most natural pass rushers in recent memory. He is by far the best defensive end in the class and isn’t getting any recognition for it. After medically retiring from UCLA, Phillips carries a big red flag with him but injury is a part of the game and although he is one concussion away from his career being over, every snap is a possibility for any player to get their career ended. Fear of injury shouldn’t keep teams from picking arguably a top ten talent in the draft. Phillips will be a monster off the edge in the NFL

Pro Comparison: Cameron Jordan


University of Georgia

6’3″ 240 lbs

Ojulari is a skilled speed rusher and dominated while in the SEC. With three sacks against Cincinnati in his final CFB game, he showed he has the ability to take over a game off the edge. He is a freaky athlete who has a high ceiling and could become a dominant force with the right coaching.

Pro Comparison: Josh Allen (Jaguars)


Pennsylvania State University

6’3″ 244 lbs

Parsons is in the conversation for being the best defensive player in the class. His athletic ability is absolutely absurd and can be dropped in coverage or can rush the passer on third down. He has some off the field issues but if he can get those under control, he’ll be a highly effective defensive leader in any scheme.

Pro Comparison: Jaylon Smith


University of Notre Dame

6’1″ 216 lbs

There are a lot of athletes in this class, but non quite like JOK. Owusu-Koramoah is a big hitter, an effective blitzer, and a better cover man than some cornerbacks in this class. He is the ultimate defensive chess piece and reminds me a lot of a massive Jamal Adams.

Pro Comparison: Cory Littleton


University of Washington

6’5″ 262 lbs

The second player Husky on this list, Tryon is a very intriguing prospect. He is scheme fluid, but is probably a best fit as a 3-4 OLB. He is both athletic and powerful. Tryon will need some mental sharpening in the NFL but has one of the higher ceilings of anyone and plays a very important position.

Pro Comparison: Brian Burns


University of Alabama

6’2″ 203 lbs

Surtain II is a super sound cornerback prospect who comes from a legendary NFL bloodline. After the surgery to Farley, he is the clear CB1 and will warrant a top ten pick. He’s a safe plug and play man cover cornerback who will be willing and able to cover the best of the best from day one.

Pro Comparison: James Bradberry


University of South Carolina

6’1″ 205 lbs

Horn is one of the most exciting players to watch in the whole draft. He plays an extremely physical and aggressive brand of football and played at a high level in the SEC. He has great size and projects to be one of the best starting cornerbacks in the league. Horn will experience growing pains but could be one of the better cover men in the whole league.

Pro Comparison: Jalen Ramsey


Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University

6’2″ 207 lbs

If it weren’t for his recent back surgery, Farley would be the clear CB1 in the draft. He has only been playing the position for a few years but is one of the best athletes in the whole league and put the clamps on the whole ACC conference in 2019. He opted out in 2020 and that only helped his draft stock. Could be the steal of the century here.

Pro Comparison: Marshon Lattimore


Indiana University

6’1″ 197 lbs

Jamar Johnson is flying way under the radar and is getting no recognition. His tape is beautiful and he is one of the most sound tacklers in college football. Johnson can cover the slot, play down in the box, and even blitz from the strong safety position. He’ll be a great starter in the league and has a ceiling to be one of the best in the league.

Pro Comparison: Reshad Jones


Texas Christian University

6’2″ 203 lbs

Moehrig is an incredible cover man from the safety position and demonstrates great instincts from centerfield. He can come down and lay the boom outside the box, or track a ball forty yards downfield. He plays the game fast and could be one of the best free safeties in the league in a few years.

Pro Comparison: Minkah Fitzpatrick