Last Minute NFL Draft Board Panel


NFL Draft day is now about 24 hours away. We are getting closer to finally getting answers to some of our most burning questions. Will the Cleveland Browns be able to acquire both their franchise quarterback and dynamic running back Saquon Barkley? Will the Buffalo Bills be able to jump up and snag one of these top quarterbacks? These two questions and more will be answered soon enough.

Usually, teams have finalized or are currently finalizing their draft boards. One team’s draft board is drastically different from any other team’s in the league. That’s to be expected, with different drafting philosophies and team needs rampant throughout the NFL. NFL teams aren’t the only ones who are creating draft boards, however. Many members in the sports journalist world are pitching in with their boards and opinions on prospects.

I wanted to add to this process. However, I also want to emulate the disparity we see in official NFL draft boards. A variety of opinion and evaluation. So, in collaboration with Devon Withers, Kaleb McChesney, and Elsio Rosario, I give to you our NFL Draft Board Panel. This panel will feature our top 32 prospects and a summary explaining our reasoning behind said boards. A bit last minute, sure, but I give this to you nonetheless.

Just a couple of author’s notes. First, you will not agree with everything you see in these four boards. That’s okay. As a matter of fact, that’s to be expected. It is human nature to disagree, and do not hesitate to let us know what you disagree with and your reasoning for doing so.

Second, the summaries submitted were left in the format they were delivered to me in, with the exception of mine. That’s why some are split up into paragraphs and others are just one long paragraph. With that aside, let’s get to it.

Click the section heading to be directed to the draft board. Example: click “Kaleb’s Draft Board” to be directed to his draft board.

Kaleb’s Draft Board

For my rankings of this big board, the top 3 was the most simple part of this process. Barkley, I believe, is the most sure fire non QB prospect in the last 20 years. Bradley Chubb is a DOMINANT pass rusher and will be a great force in the NFL, getting praise from Von Miller. Quenton Nelson out of Notre Dame is what some people call a can’t miss, can’t bust prospect. He has been showing great strength and protection during this process. After the top 3, it does get tougher. I believe that this is a top heavy QB class, so three of the four QBs are ranked before place 15. There are also a good amount of pro level LBs who could succeed at this NFL level, and they are ranked all across my board. Offensive Line also does not have a rarity of talent, as players across the line ranked up and down the board. Defensive backs are at a premium, only having six nominations on this board. The center position is also a rarity in the top 32, only having a single nomination with Billy Price on the board. I do think the HB Class is the deepest of all positions in this draft. There are only 2 on my big board here with Barkley and Derrius Guice. I think there is great value later in the draft but only 2 home run prospects here early. Overall, this is a very top heavy class but with a good amount of bright spots after the top 32. This was a fun but difficult process to do and many rankings will differ.

Devon’s Draft Board

Within this particular big board, a few names will pop out. Primarily, I have Josh Rosen just inside my top ten. The reasoning behind this is simple: if we are talking about talent alone, Rosen would be one of the best prospects within this class. Pending any drastic moves, it seems as though the UCLA product will land outside that top ten.

In addition, another name that pops out is safety Derwin James at #11. In theory, I believe that DB Minkah Fitzpatrick has the better skill set, but James could very well have the stronger career at the end of the day. Based out of Florida State, this is a name to watch out for.

Lastly, I placed quarterback Lamar Jackson at #27, which seems fair for the most part. Out of Louisville, his talent alone should see him as a first round pick on Thursday night. If my prediction is right, he will either land in Arizona or New England. Regardless, he has the support system on and off the field in order to be considered a successful quarterback in the NFL.

My Draft Board

Now, this board will ruffle some feathers. I’m perfectly aware of that.

I am not high on many of these quarterbacks. Rosen is in my top ten because I believe he is the best pro ready quarterback. I believe Baker Mayfield has the highest potential of all the QBs. My least favorite quarterback, despite my ranking, is Sam Darnold. I find him to be incompetent, inconsistent, and incredibly prone to turnovers. He does have loads of potential, I will admit. It is this potential that saved him from swapping places with Lamar Jackson.

I believe my top two, Quenton Nelson and Saquon Barkley, are easily the two best prospects in this draft. Their order in this board can go either way. I believe Nelson has higher potential at his position than Barkley does, so he gets the edge by an extremely slight margin. Both guys figure to be future perennial all pro’s.

Once you get past the top five or so, it does get extremely difficult. I really could’ve switched some guys that I left off with guys I included. One guy I left off that I’m not really high on is defensive tackle Taven Bryan. I’ve drafted him a couple times in our mock drafts, but I’ve soured on him. He’s got talent, but I don’t see much star potential.

All in all, this was an extremely fun process to undergo, and I am hyped for Thursday’s draft.

Elsio’s Draft Board

You’ll see I have Saquon Barkley at number one. I feel he has the best or, at worst, second best skill set of any position in the NFL. He has no character concerns and no notable red flags as far as injury history. Scouts and coaches were amazed by his interviews which is a testament to that character.

I have Josh Allen at 16, which is a lot lower than most people would have him. He’s going to be a top 5 pick, but I’m very low on him. Besides his arm, he has nothing that wows me. His floor and ceiling are both low as far as being an NFL quarterback as far as I can see.

Lastly, you’ll notice a lack of Hayden Hurst on this list. This is nothing against him as a player. I’m high on him as a prospect, but there aren’t many teams with tight end as their primary need. He’ll likely go in the first, but he won’t plug the primary hole of many teams. Lack of need kept a great prospect off this list.

There you have it. Our boards are locked in. Now, we wait 24 excruciating hours for the NFL Draft. Which board did you agree with the most? Which board did you disagree with the most? Let us know on Twitter @HubOfAthletes and/or on Facebook.

Photo Credit: AP

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