Most NFL draft pundits have offensive lineman Alijah Vera-Tucker locked in as a first-round selection, but there are a few other Trojans who could be competing for an NFL roster spot next season.
NFL.com’s Chad Reuter released his latest seven-round mock draft and has five USC players being picked among his picks.
Reuter has Vera-Tucker going 25th overall to the Jackson Jaguars. If the Jags go with the offensive lineman, he will likely be protecting Clemson’s Trevor Lawrence, who is projected to go No. 1.
“The Jaguars placed the franchise tag on Cam Robinson, but Vera-Tucker could still compete for the starting left tackle job in 2021,” Reuter writes. “Even if Robinson stays in place, AVT will at least play the important sixth-man role in 2021 before slipping into a starting job at tackle or guard in 2022.”
Vera-Tucker started all 13 games for the Trojans last season, and Pro Football Focus had him graded as the best pass-blocking guard available at the draft. The 21-year-old was given first-team 2020 All-Pac-12 honors for his efforts during the 2020 campaign.
There are four more USC players in Reuter’s mock draft, but you will have to go far down from where Vera-Tucker lands.
There a couple of Trojans who will likely be picked up as undrafted free agents. Reuter believes cornerback Olijah Griffin and receiver Tyler Vaughns as the highest-rated USC prospects likely to sign with an NFL team following the draft.