NFL Draft 2018: Who Will Be Drafted 1st Overall?
Surprisingly, the NFL Combine didn’t have the biggest impact on the projected 2018 first overall pick draft odds. As you can see, Saquon Barkley made the biggest jump up the board, but overall the list looks very similar to before the combine started.
Odds as of March 6th
- Saquon Barkley (RB) +180
- Sam Darnold (QB) +300
- Josh Allen (QB) +380
- Baker Mayfield (QB) +600
- Josh Rosen (QB) +800
- Minkah Fitzpatrick (DB) +2500
- Bradley Chubb (DE) +3300
- Field (Any Other Player) +1600
Odds as of FEB 20th
- Sam Darnold (QB) +190
- Josh Rosen (QB) +250
- Josh Allen (QB) +300
- Saquon Barkley (RB) +300
- Baker Mayfield (QB) +500
- Bradley Chubb (DE) +3300
- Minkah Fitzpatrick (DB) +3300
- Field (Any Other Player) +1400
Sportsbooks can be a professional guide to the inside edge with predictions. A lot of ex-players and fantasy football insiders have their own algorithms or formulas when it comes to making projections, but sportsbooks and the odds they offer are a great consensus of where people are putting their money. When the lines move, it’s not because someone has a gut feeling, it’s because people are placing bets on one outcome or another.
Some believe there is a prototypical body type that general managers like to rely on when researching NFL Draft prospects at the NFL combine. However, Saquon Barkley has shattered all comparables and seems like an obvious stud. Barkley ran a 4.40 40-yard dash, posted 29 reps on the bench press and had a 41-inch vertical leap. He did all of this, mind you, as a 233 pound running back. Barkley has gone from the top running back in the draft, to being in the conversation as the best overall player of the draft altogether. His impact could speak volume for whatever team selects him as he would be a workhouse and mismatch nightmare that you would want to feed the ball too.
Currently, the Cleveland Browns are on the clock with the first overall pick in the upcoming NFL draft, which is being held at the AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas on April 26 through the 28th.
The Browns are notorious for trading out of the top pick, as they have done so the last two years. Cleveland needs a lot of help and could select Barkley first overall; however, a lot of the Draft gurus think they need to address the quarterback position with their first overall pick.
One player that had an excellent combine and has undoubtedly boosted his value was Wyoming’s, Josh Allen. The gunslinger who was showing off his arm strength with 70-yard bombs at the combine has emerged as a safe top 10 pick. Allen has taken a similar path that of Carson Wentz, in the fact he was a small school prospect that was overlooked. Allen received no interest from FBS programs after his high school career. He signed with Reedley Community College in California for the 2014 season, throwing for 26 touchdowns and 285 yards a game (with 66 rushing yards per contest). Wyoming’s head coach Craig Bohl recruited Allen and had high hopes. After breaking his right clavicle and taking a medical redshirt, Alen stepped into a starting role his sophomore season and began to get the attention he deserved. The Cowboys made the Mountain West Conference Championship game thanks to Allen’s 14 starts, in which he completed 56% of his passes (209-of-373) throwing for 3,203 yards and 28 touchdowns.
The Browns Need To Get This Right
Holding the first and fourth overall picks could make it possible for the Browns to snag both Allen and Barkley realistically. Clevland has the firepower with an army of picks and could simply move up from the 4th overall position to select back to back 1st and 2nd overall. Armchair GM’s love to talk about value with trading up or down in the draft, but after years of terrible drafting and miss-firing on talent, I believe the Browns should be trying the opposite approach to what they have been doing. Instead of loading up on picks and trying to get lucky with a lower tier of talent, I believe they should be aggressive and gain as much elite prospect talent as they can get.
The one wildcard and hopefully bright spot for Browns fans this year is that John Dorsey is the new General Manager. The Browns have 12 picks in all, including five in the first two rounds. Dorsey will be calling the shots for this draft class and shaping the roster as he sees fit. Dorsey was the GM for the Kansas City Chiefs from 2013-16, and in that time the team recorded a 43-21 (.672) record, the fourth-highest winning percentage in the NFL during that span. In fact, The Chiefs had the most significant turnaround in franchise history in 2013, rebounding from a 2-14 season go 11-5 and reach the playoffs. It was Dorsey’s first season as GM, and Andy Reid’s first as the new head coach. Cleveland.com is taking a hard look at the draft classes Dorsey picked throughout his time in KC, hopefully trying to get a read on what they could be in store for.
With the high number of picks this season, and the opportunity to finally get it right, I think most football fans are rooting for Cleveland to finally build a winning team through the NFL Draft.
Who do you think the Browns pick at one?