Looking at Past Results of the Consensus Draft Board

I had a good question this past week on the podcast from one of my listeners about the value of the various draft rankings. It reminded me of a small project I had worked on last year looking at the consensus draft rankings which I think I discussed on a podcast but never really posted about. For those unfamiliar with the consensus draft, it is a massive project that has been undertaken each year by Arif Hasan where he compiles a large number of draft rankings into one big board to get an idea as to where draft analysts project the player rankings. Some teams seem to completely discount all the mock draft stuff while others say it can be useful so I wanted to go back and look at how the consensus board performed in terms of 2nd contract value and in accuracy over a small timeframe which for these purposes is from 2015 to 2018.

Here is the average outcome of the two drafts over the four years broken down by the pick range in the draft and consensus draft:

Pick RangeActual Pick 2nd ContractConsensus Pick 2nd ContractDifference
1 to 10$16,378,009$14,580,975$1,797,034
11 to 20$12,449,592$9,432,415$3,017,177
21 to 32$7,424,359$11,011,351($3,586,991)
33 to 47$8,102,223$7,942,507$159,717
48 to 63$6,115,502$4,922,047$1,193,455
64 to 79$4,420,657$5,611,106($1,190,449)
80 to 95$5,500,377$3,846,620$1,653,757
96 to 111$3,366,245$3,817,416($451,171)
112 to 127$3,172,717$2,645,682$527,035
128 to 143$3,673,474$4,015,333($341,859)
144 to 159$2,870,332$3,683,713($813,381)
160 to 175$2,460,984$2,325,162$135,823
176 to 191$1,330,456$1,481,068($150,612)
192 to 207$2,147,430$2,161,168($13,738)
208 to 223$894,750$2,267,029($1,372,279)
224 to 239$1,153,906$1,846,243($692,337)
240 to 255$1,269,091$1,496,979($227,888)
Con. UDFA/Drafted$2,513,431($2,513,431)
Unlisted Con.$1,726,103($1,726,103)

The top of the draft skews in favor of the actual draft which looks like it would largely be from the NFL being more bullish on players the consensus board may have ranked in the 20’s being pushed forward a bit and a similar outcome likely occurring near the top of the 2nd round. While I am sure this is a pretty random outcome the players actually selected from 208 to 223 on average have been pretty bad which led to a big gain in the consensus board there. Somewhat interesting are the players who would be considered high level UDFA’s by the consensus board who the NFL actually drafted (I did not calculate those who went undrafted) averaging $2.5 million per year on a 2nd contract so there are clearly some good players that land between 256ish and 300. Also a solid result is that the players who were not listed at all on the consensus board but were drafted only averaged $1.7M per year on their 2nd NFL contract. While that is better than the performance of the late rounds it is fair to say that those the consensus have missed are, on average, not turning into superstar players and generally perform at the level of a 6th round draft pick.

The second thing I looked at was the differential between the consensus board and the actual draft. For this I broke the differences up into ranges. A 10 spot change would be a near perfect hit with the player’s draft position coming within 10 picks of the consensus ranking. A “jump” would indicate that the NFL saw that player as worth a higher pick than the consensus while a “fall” would indicate some range lower than the consensus.

Differential RangePct of PicksAvg. 2nd Contract Value
10 spot change18.9%$8,039,019
Not listed15.4%$1,715,588
25 to 50 jump11.7%$3,410,558
10 to 25 spot jump10.9%$6,431,445
10 to 25 spot fall10.1%$5,644,023
25 to 50 fall9.7%$2,801,835
50 to 75 jump6.6%$3,535,751
100 to 200 jump4.2%$3,947,371
50 to 75 fall3.6%$2,991,946
75 to 100 jump3.5%$2,907,472
75 to 100 fall2.9%$1,814,892
100 to 200 fall2.4%$693,604

Nearly 19% of the picks in this timeframe fell within 10 spots of the consensus ranking which is pretty good. Players that fell or rose between 10 and 25 spots were both about equal at 10.9 and 10.1%.That basically puts the consensus board at around 40% of the players who are likely to be selected within 1 round of the consensus ranking. The bigger change is in the 25 to 50 spot changes. Nearly 12% of the draft picks rise by at least 25 picks from the consensus board which is a pretty high number. Just under 10% fall by that much. Still that is probably going to lead to a round and a half change which isn’t too bad. That would put us around 60%.

The number of players who are big risers or droppers is not huge. About 10% have a difference of 50 to 75 selection spots and 6% are between 75 and 100 spots. 6.5% is the number of massive changes over 100 spots. The players unlisted by the consensus would be the big miss at 15.4% of the actual draft. Still that means nearly 85% of the players drafted were on the consensus boards which is pretty solid with 60% of those being within a round.

I think one thing worth noting here is the salary outcomes of those who fall in the draft. While the draft does influence salary outcomes, the results would certainly indicate that those draft day fallers who will get touted as “great value” often are not performing at that level. Player’s who fell over 100 spots from the consensus had an average 2nd salary of just $694K which basically is the minimum during that timeframe. Players who fell 75 slots had just $1.8 million and the 25 spot fall worked out to $2.8 million. These were three of the four worth performers on the board. The other one was the $1.7M for those who were unlisted on the consensus. That tells me that while it’s a miss to not have those player’s listed, on average they are not standouts in any way shape or form.

On the other side of the spectrum the draft “reaches” have performed better than the ones we consider great value. Those who jump over 100 spots have an average 2nd salary of nearly $4 million. The 50 spot jump is at $3.5 million. So the NFL is probably getting something right there over where the consensus sees the draft.

Finally I wanted to look at these same hit rates based on the consensus board rankings just to get the best idea for where we find the risers and fallers.

Pick Range10 spot change10 to 25 spot jump10 to 25 spot fall25 to 50 jump25 to 50 fall50 to 75 jump50 to 75 fall75 to 100 jump75 to 100 fall100 to 200 jump100 to 200 fall
1 to 1080.0%0.0%15.0%0.0%2.5%0.0%2.5%0.0%0.0%0.0%0.0%
11 to 2053.8%10.3%17.9%0.0%15.4%0.0%0.0%0.0%0.0%0.0%2.6%
21 to 3247.9%22.9%14.6%0.0%10.4%0.0%0.0%0.0%4.2%0.0%0.0%
33 to 4739.1%20.3%17.2%6.3%10.9%0.0%3.1%0.0%0.0%0.0%3.1%
48 to 6322.2%20.6%25.4%11.1%12.7%0.0%3.2%0.0%1.6%0.0%3.2%
64 to 7926.6%10.9%21.9%15.6%6.3%0.0%3.1%0.0%7.8%0.0%7.8%
80 to 9517.7%19.4%9.7%16.1%14.5%3.2%6.5%0.0%8.1%0.0%4.8%
96 to 11121.7%10.0%10.0%21.7%15.0%1.7%8.3%1.7%3.3%0.0%6.7%
112 to 12711.9%13.6%11.9%20.3%16.9%5.1%5.1%0.0%8.5%0.0%6.8%
128 to 14313.0%13.0%11.1%16.7%16.7%5.6%9.3%5.6%5.6%0.0%3.7%
144 to 15915.4%17.3%5.8%13.5%9.6%15.4%9.6%1.9%7.7%1.9%1.9%
160 to 1754.8%14.3%7.1%16.7%19.0%9.5%9.5%7.1%7.1%4.8%0.0%
176 to 1917.9%5.3%7.9%21.1%23.7%21.1%5.3%5.3%0.0%2.6%0.0%
192 to 20711.4%8.6%8.6%17.1%11.4%5.7%5.7%22.9%0.0%8.6%0.0%
208 to 2233.4%13.8%10.3%10.3%10.3%20.7%0.0%10.3%0.0%20.7%0.0%
224 to 2392.9%5.7%5.7%20.0%2.9%28.6%0.0%20.0%0.0%14.3%0.0%
240 to 25513.6%4.5%0.0%18.2%0.0%31.8%0.0%9.1%0.0%22.7%0.0%

I think looking at a change of no more than 25 spots we can see that the most accurate consensus picks are the top 10 (95% hit rate), picks 11 to 32 (mid 80%), top of the 2nd round (77%), and bottom of the 2nd round (68%). Obviously our biggest risers will come from those ranked by the consensus at 6th round picks and later.

The big misses come in the mid round projections. Picks 64 to 79 had just under 16% with a 75 slot or greater fall. Pick 80 to 95 was at 13% while 96 to 111 was 10% and 112 to 127 was at 15%. This is probably where we have our biggest disconnect so it is probably fair to say that the 1st and 2nd round projections are pretty good with the top of the 3rd round being decent but with a much higher variance and then things get a little chaotic in the 2nd half of the 3rd round through the 4th round. Basically we are going to find a number of players who jump up from those late consensus projections to replace these players. It would probably be worthwhile to do this on a positional basis but perhaps that will be something to look at next year.

Overall, regardless of what extra information teams have and all the extra prep work that goes into the draft, the “amateur” draft process is pretty solid at identifying most players who will be drafted and producing overall outcomes that are not that far off from the actual NFL results despite having less resources on hand and should be capable of producing some pretty accurate simulations of draft outcomes.

Revisiting the 2014 NFL Draft

I thought for the draft this year I would do a series looking back at each draft from 2012 through 2017 and seeing what information we can get by breaking each draft down based mainly on career earnings So far we have gone over the 2012 and 2013 draft so now it is time for the 2014 NFL draft. For each draft we will break things down by position and the round in which the players were drafted. The 2023 salary data is included in all analysis.

Career Length

For a players career length we are looking at how many times the player finished an NFL season on a roster, practice squad included. Here is the breakdown by round.

Draft RoundYears in NFLYears with 1 team
Top 108.35.4

This was certainly a much better group than the 2013 NFL draft with players having longer careers overall and with the team that drafted them despite being drafted a year later. This year the 3rd and 4th rounds ran a bit closer while the 5th and 6th could be grouped together. Round 7 had a slightly longer career with the draft team than the prior draft seasons. Six players lasted a decade with the team who drafted them.

Performance by Original Draft Round

We re-ranked every player based on how much they earned over their initial four year rookie contract. Here was the breakdown for the 2014 draft based on the initial draft position, the average result, and what percentage finished in the top 100.

RoundAvg Redraft RankTop 10Top 32Top 64Top 100
Top 1052.130.0%60.0%80.0%90.0%

This was a very strong first round with 60% of the top 10 picks currently ranking in the top 32 and 50% of the rest of the first rounders landing in the top 32. The hit rates for top 100 is currently over 80%. The average position of these players is right around 50. The 2nd round had some hits and misses  50% of the players landed in the top 64 which is solid but only 60% were in the top 100 which isn’t terrible but also not great. Rounds 3 and 4 had solid hit rates but limited impact players. Round 7 saw a big tick up from the past two years.

If we just look at overperforming or underperforming their initial round of selection we get the following hit rates.

RoundOverperformedUnderperformedHit Target
Top 1070.0%30.0%

This looks like a very good draft at the top and solid results from late in the draft, relative to where the player was selected. The middle of the draft may have been a slight disappointment overall.

Performance by Position

Here is the breakdown for each position and where they ranked in earnings over rookie contract.

PositionDraftedTop 10Top 32Top 64Top 100

While there were not a lot of left tackles selected here, the results were good for the players who were selected. Guard was a pretty safe pick with over 20% of the players landing top 32. QB was solid and this was the first year that wide receiver started to stand out. The non-premier positions did not have any players really break the mold as “unicorn” types.

What if we just limit this to the hit rates of players taken in the top 100 ?

PositionDraftedTop 10Top 32Top 64Top 100

The wide receiver numbers here stand out as a positive with 80% of them in the top 100 and almost 50% finishing in the top 32. Linebacker and guard did not have the higher end success but did do well in the top 64 and linebacker continues to be a very safe pick in terms of having a longer career. Edge, corner and IDL had more of a boom/bust profile this year. Running back was probably the worst draft selection this year.

Who Had the Best and Worst Drafts

The Raiders blew everyone away, landing two of the top five picks (Derek Carr and Khalil Mack) in this year’s draft. Unfortunately for the Raiders, Mack was gone from the team after a few years and they didn’t hit much more after this. The Cowboys had the number two draft with DeMarcus Lawrence and Zack Martin leading the way. Both players have helped them form a core that has been in and out of the playoffs since 2014. The Jaguars surprisingly came in third with some solid but not standout players. Their total is somewhat inflated by their own decision to extend Blake Bortles.

This was back to back years for the Colts arguably having the worst draft. This is the reason why it is pretty fair to argue that they wasted the Luck years. The worst bang for the buck was from the Jets “historic” 12 person draft. Quincy Enunwa was the top player for the Jets while none of their top picks even lasted 4 seasons with the team.

TeamPicksNet Earnings

The Final Draft Rankings

When re-assessing the draft here is where the average pick came from in each final draft tier.

RoundAvg. Draft Slot
Top 1029.7

Our new top 10 consists of four wide receivers, two quarterbacks, two edges, one interior defensive line, and one left tackle. Three top 10 picks actually finished in the top 10. They were Khalil Mack, Jake Matthews, and Mike Evans.  Aaron Donald and Brandin Cooks were 1st rounders who finished in the top 10 and the remainder were from the second round, so this seems to be a pretty strong year for identifying talent in the right spots. The biggest riser was Charles Leno (228 slot jump)

Here are the top 100 players ranked by career earnings over their rookie contract.

RankNamePositionEarningsOriginal Draft SlotChange in Draft SlotYears PlayedYears With Draft Team
1Derek CarrQB$160,147,4813635109
2Aaron DonaldIDL$146,892,00013111010
3Jimmy GaroppoloQB$145,502,9416259103
4Khalil MackEDGE$131,595,98051104
5Demarcus LawrenceEDGE$111,926,38734291010
6Davante AdamsWR$108,615,0005347108
7Brandin CooksWR$99,988,4122013103
8Mike EvansWR$95,655,6407-11010
9Jake MatthewsLT$95,554,8236-31010
10Allen RobinsonWR$90,542,5006151104
11Zack MartinOG$79,341,0001651010
12C.J. MosleyLB$76,718,000175105
13Taylor LewanLT$71,088,23511-299
14Joel BitonioOG$70,617,64835211010
15Odell Beckham Jr.WR$69,709,00012-385
16Corey LinsleyC$63,107,000161145107
17Jarvis LandryWR$63,079,412634694
18Charles Leno Jr.LT$58,707,000246228107
19Jadeveon ClowneyEDGE$58,556,0001-18105
20Teddy BridgewaterQB$55,203,125321294
21Dee FordEDGE$54,953,62523285
22Kyle FullerCB$54,000,00014-897
23Gabe JacksonOG$52,970,000815897
24Stephon TuittIDL$50,951,440462288
25Anthony BarrLB$50,361,8829-1698
26Sammy WatkinsWR$49,714,1184-2293
27Jimmie WardCB$48,325,092303109
28Bradley RobyCB$44,770,281313105
29Brandon LinderC$41,577,412936488
30Christian KirkseyLB$41,292,5307141106
31Trai TurnerOG$40,580,529926196
32DaQuan JonesIDL$40,157,00011280107
33Morgan MosesRT$38,329,3536633107
34Lamarcus JoynerS$38,328,17741795
35Anthony HitchensLB$37,607,0001198484
36Kyle Van NoyLB$35,400,00040492
37Ja\’Wuan JamesRT$31,081,00019-1895
38Weston RichburgC$29,500,00143574
39Matt ParadisC$29,406,10020716885
40John BrownWR$28,645,460915194
41Devon KennardLB$27,705,39517413384
42Billy TurnerOG$27,458,000672592
43Blake BortlesQB$27,116,0023-4085
44Eric EbronTE$25,500,00010-3484
45Justin BrittC$25,360,327641986
46Logan ThomasQB$24,882,10012074101
47Shelby HarrisEDGE$23,922,32423518892
48Laurent Duvernay-TardifOG$23,625,31120015297
49Devonta FreemanRB$23,430,3961035486
50Trent MurphyEDGE$23,213,91447-374
51Quincy EnunwaWR$22,370,74120915866
52Avery WilliamsonLB$20,837,1251519974
53T.J. CarrieCB$20,721,25521916694
54Zach FultonC$20,142,25019313974
55Aaron ColvinCB$20,093,0211145974
56Jerick McKinnonRB$18,651,638964094
57Marqise LeeWR$17,231,25039-1876
58Ricardo AllenS$17,152,9121478987
59Jason VerrettCB$16,780,93525-3495
60Paul RichardsonWR$16,643,75045-1564
61Donte MoncriefWR$16,237,705902964
62Pierre DesirCB$16,189,8731276582
63Timmy JerniganIDL$16,122,29448-1563
64Telvin SmithLB$15,507,0001448055
65James WhiteRB$15,331,2501306588
66Justin EllisIDL$14,233,4711074195
67Darqueze DennardCB$14,143,57024-4386
68Beau AllenIDL$14,100,00022415674
69Terrance MitchellCB$14,066,93325418591
70Cameron FlemingLT$13,615,0001407094
71Shamar StephenIDL$13,393,75822014986
72Tre BostonS$13,295,0001285675
73Carlos HydeRB$13,278,67657-1684
74A.J. McCarronQB$13,016,1471649084
75Preston BrownLB$12,727,61873-264
76Spencer LongC$12,297,00078264
77Deone BucannonLB$11,727,52927-5075
78Ha-Ha Clinton-DixS$11,609,00021-5774
79Nevin LawsonCB$11,079,8211335485
80Kareem MartinEDGE$10,900,05884474
81Michael SchofieldOG$10,888,056951493
82Pat O’DonnellP$10,750,000191109108
83Kevin Pierre-LouisLB$10,672,3171324993
84Jeremiah AttaochuEDGE$10,032,24650-3495
85Bashaud BreelandCB$9,253,6501021784
86Ryan ShazierLB$9,191,00015-7166
87Chris SmithEDGE$9,111,5681597273
88Kelvin BenjaminWR$8,811,94128-6053
89Ross CockrellCB$8,569,8821092081
90Andre HalS$8,357,00021612655
91Cassius MarshEDGE$8,004,4711081783
92Greg RobinsonLT$7,790,0002-9063
93Terrence BrooksS$7,509,83879-1482
94Brent UrbanIDL$7,478,42313440107
95Xavier Su’a-FiloOG$7,352,14833-6294
96Aaron LynchEDGE$7,073,3981505474
97C.J. FiedorowiczTE$6,621,44065-3244
98Ryan GrantWR$6,520,8821424464
99E.J. GainesCB$4,836,2501888963
100Richard RodgersTE$4,776,03098-2104

Revisiting the 2013 NFL Draft

I thought for the draft this year I would do a series looking back at each draft from 2012 through 2017 and seeing what information we can get by breaking each draft down based mainly on career earnings. In the first post of the series I went back and looked at the 2012 draft. Today I’ll look at what has been regarded as one of the worst recent drafts, 2013. For each draft we will break things down by position and the round in which the players were drafted.

Career Length

For a players career length we are looking at how many times the player finished an NFL season on a roster, practice squad included. Here is the breakdown by round.

Draft RoundYears in NFLYears with 1 team
Top 107.55.1

This wound up being very consistent in terms of career length with the top two rounds being nearly identical and the 3rd round not being that far behind. For the teams that drafted the players it was basically a disaster. The average length of time for a 1st rounder was just 5.1 years, which is basically the length of the rookie contract. The other rounds had similar results to 2012. Five players from this draft lasted for a decade with the team who drafted them.

Performance by Original Draft Round

We re-ranked every player based on how much they earned over their initial four year rookie contract. Here was the breakdown for the 2013 draft based on the initial draft position, the average result, and what percentage finished in the top 100.

RoundAvg Redraft RankTop 10Top 32Top 64Top 100
Top 1083.410.0%30.0%40.0%70.0%

These results were pretty interesting with the first and 2nd round basically producing very similar quality players while the third round still did a solid job overall at producing talent that deserved to be picked in the top half of the draft. Round four and five also were pretty consistent followed by round 6 with a big dropoff once you get to round 7.

If we just look at overperforming or underperforming their initial round of selection we get the following hit rates.

RoundOverperformedUnderperformedHit Target
Top 1090.0%10.0%

These results fall in line with the idea that the 2013 draft was very weak on the top and just filled with players who were more likely to fit 2nd round profiles rather than true top picks.

Performance by Position

Here is the breakdown for each position and where they ranked in earnings over rookie contract.

PositionDraftedTop 10Top 32Top 64Top 100

This was a good year if you were an offensive tackle or center. Corners also did well and the interior defensive lie was respectable. Linebacker and running back were both duds as were edge and QB.

What if we just limit this to the hit rates of players taken in the top 100 ?

PositionDraftedTop 10Top 32Top 64Top 100

While there were only four left tackles taken, the scouts seemed to get it right with two landing in the top 10, three in the top 32 and all four in the top 100 players selected. Tight end had a very high hit rate as did the interior d-line, corner, and wide receiver. Edge was a terrible projection with only 36% of the players selected top 100 actually finishing top 100.

Who Had the Best and Worst Drafts

The Eagles and Packers are still in a race for top draft with the Eagles ranking being powered by Lane Johnson and the Packers by David Bakhtiari. The Eagles were the only team with two top 10 players as tight end Zach Ertz also made the top 10 in career earnings outside of his rookie contract. The other teams that had a solid draft were the Ravens, Lions, Saints, and Texans.

The Colts were the worst of the teams with their players not even hitting the original contract numbers. This was the Bjoern Werner draft at the top for them and they also got nothing out of their late round selections. Seattle, who was great the year before, was anything but in 2013. The Browns and Titans also did not reach $10 million in value.

TeamPicksNet Earnings

The Final Draft Rankings

When re-assessing the draft here is where the average pick came from in each final draft tier.

RoundAvg. Draft Slot
Top 1069.7

Our new top 10 consists of three left tackles, two wide receivers, two tight ends, a cornerback, a safety, and a center. The only top 10 pick to actually finish in the top 10 was Lane Johnson. The only other first rounder to finish top 10 was DeAndre Hopkins.

Here are the top 100 players ranked by career earnings over their rookie contract.

RankNamePositionEarningsOriginal Draft SlotChange in Draft SlotYears PlayedYears With Draft Team
1DeAndre HopkinsWR1.26E+082726117
2David BakhtiariLT1.2E+081091071111
3Keenan AllenWR1.07E+0876731111
4Terron ArmsteadLT988007067571119
5Lane JohnsonLT958208364-11111
6Darius SlayCB931187503630117
7Tyrann MathieuS878043536962115
8Travis KelceTE7522816263551111
9Ryan JensenC69707735203194115
10Zach ErtzTE663770593525118
11Kawann ShortIDL66000000443388
12Robert WoodsWR657500384129114
13Eric FisherLT605796391-12108
14Desmond TrufantCB5620655622897
15Logan RyanCB544460008368104
16Micah HydeS51350044159143114
17Xavier RhodesCB51228300258107
18Jamie CollinsEDGE501921775234106
19Brandon WilliamsIDL494209009475109
20Justin PughOG4482100019-1105
21Sheldon RichardsonIDL4369217613-894
22J.C. TretterC4205000012210094
23Jordan PoyerCB41682353218195110
24Le’Veon BellRB40688285482496
25Ezekiel AnsahEDGE403270005-2086
26Geno SmithQB399950003913114
27Star LotuleleiIDL3865700014-1395
28Ricky WagnerRT3724600016814084
29Robert AlfordCB36834444603196
30Kyle JuszczykFB35326471130100114
31Kenny StillsWR3394155514411393
32William GholstonEDGE32996000126941010
33Travis FrederickC3282100031-277
34Alec OgletreeLB3270305930-485
35Cordarrelle PattersonWR3200000029-6114
36Jordan ReedTE30605545854987
37Kyle LongOG3042100020-1787
38Tavon AustinWR287115228-3095
39A.J. KleinLB28671111148109104
40Larry WarfordOG27163000652574
41Johnathan HankinsIDL26520503498104
42Brian WintersOG26456750723087
43Mike GlennonQB263830667330104
44Vance McDonaldTE24753125551184
45Giovani BernardRB2413500037-8108
46D.J. HaydenCB2311744412-3494
47Shawn WilliamsS21113862843798
48Duron HarmonS209750009143107
49Kiko AlonsoLB2067500046-372
50Vince WilliamsLB2010000020615688
51Kenny VaccaroS1966580915-3685
52Tyler EifertTE1820387521-3187
53Sam MartinP18087500165112117
54Latavius MurrayRB17975333181127104
55Alex OkaforEDGE177783961034894
56Dustin HopkinsK17138356177121111
57Marquise GoodwinWR169062507821104
58Eric ReidS1656600018-4075
59Ryan GriffinTE16199249201142106
60Rex BurkheadRB15868015190130104
61D.J. SwearingerS1540867857-492
62Johnathan CyprienS1356794033-2974
63Dion SimsTE129960001064364
64John SimonEDGE129227631296591
65Levine ToiloloTE127410001336895
66David AmersonCB1257017151-1562
67Sylvester WilliamsIDL1240694028-3985
68Theo RiddickRB1184919419913186
69Margus HuntEDGE1176620853-1695
70T.J. McDonaldS1174096371164
71Menelik WatsonRT1146875042-2954
72Bennie LoganIDL1141160067-564
73Barkevious MingoEDGE110625006-6783
74Stacy McGeeIDL1077505920513184
75Chris ThompsonRB106626261547987
76Jon BosticLB1047300050-26102
77Akeem SpenceIDL1010916410023104
78Terrance WilliamsWR983585374-466
79Nicholas WilliamsIDL958712922314491
80Jamar TaylorCB902272054-2683
81D.J. FlukerRT868700011-7084
82Jordan MillsRT86030941638192
83Matt BarkleyQB84705669815112
84Kevin MinterLB809970645-3994
85Luke JoeckelLT80000002-8354
86Markus WheatonWR785600079-754
87Luke WillsonTE77343251587198
88Marcus CooperCB765089625216460
89John JenkinsIDL671235982-7113
90Oday AboushiOG655766214151102
91J.J. WilcoxS618606680-1174
92Jonathan CooperOG57417657-8563
93Kayvon WebsterCB559470690-374
94Quinton DialIDL54607071576354
95Manti Te’oLB532141238-5784
96Eric KushC51078941707482
97B.W. WebbCB50658511141761
98Kemal IshmaelS489100024314577
99Steven MeansEDGE431254314748101
100Eddie LacyRB425000061-3954

Revisiting the 2012 NFL Draft

I thought for the draft this year I would do a series looking back at each draft from 2012 through 2017 and seeing what information we can get by breaking each draft down based mainly on career earnings. For the first post I will go back and look at the 2012 draft. For each draft we will break things down by position and the round in which the players were drafted.

Career Length

For a players career length we are looking at how many times the player finished an NFL season on a roster, practice squad included. Here is the breakdown by round.

Draft RoundYears in NFLYears with 1 team
Top 107.74.8

At least for this draft we can probably throw out the “drafting for a decade” bit that is always thrown around every April. Only 7 players actually spent 10 or more years with the team that drafted them in 2012.

Performance by Original Draft Round

We re-ranked every player based on how much they earned over their initial four year rookie contract. Here was the breakdown for the 2012 draft based on the initial draft position, the average result, and what percentage finished in the top 100.

RoundAvg Redraft RankTop 10Top 32Top 64Top 100
Top 1078.130.0%40.0%60.0%80.0%

The top 10 being no different than the rest of round 1 probably surprises come. There obviously is always the top talent available but clearly players fell through the cracks. There was also minimal difference in the picks made in round two and three.  The real drop comes in round 7, though there were a handful of players who still ranked in the top 100.

If we just look at overperforming or underperforming their initial round of selection we get the following hit rates.

RoundOverperformedUnderperformedHit Target
Top 1070.0%30.0%

Performance by Position

Here is the breakdown for each position and where they ranked in earnings over rookie contract.

PositionDraftedTop 10Top 32Top 64Top 100

While QBs are always paid highly they did have nearly 50% place in the top 10 of the redraft ranking. That should probably say something about the importance of drafting a QB. Guard surprisingly was 3rd in players ranking top 32. While that may be due to longevity, they have been relatively underpaid compared to some other positions. The big dud this year was receiver.

What if we just limit this to the hit rates of players taken in the top 100 (technically there are 101 in this draft)?

PositionDraftedTop 10Top 32Top 64Top 100

Again, it was a good year for the QB and guards with linebacker being an incredibly safe pick. Interior d-line had a harder time and receiver was just bad this year.

Who Had the Best and Worst Drafts

Seattle had two massive hits with Russell Wilson and Bobby Wagner and were the clear top team. They were followed by Miami, though a good portion of the value that was found there was realized by the Titans which was where Ryan Tannehill became a solid NFL starter. The same can be said for the Commanders who never could agree with Kirk Cousins on a contract. The Falcons and Giants had the worst drafts, landing in the negative for earnings above the rookie contract.

TeamPicksNet Earnings

The Final Draft Rankings

When re-assessing the draft here is where the average pick came from in each final draft tier.

RoundAvg. Draft Slot
Top 1043.6

Our new top 10 consists of five QBs, two edges, one interior D-line, one cornerback, and one linebacker. The three players actually selected top 10 who remain in the top 10 are Ryan Tannehill, Andrew Luck, and Stephon Gilmore.

Here are the top 100 players ranked by career earnings over their rookie contract.

RankNamePositionEarningsOriginal Draft SlotChange in Draft SlotYears PlayedYears With Draft Team
1Russell WilsonQB$263,343,34975741210
2Kirk CousinsQB$228,896,600102100126
3Ryan TannehillQB$182,382,46785127
4Chandler JonesEDGE$124,300,9032117124
5Fletcher CoxIDL$118,181,3531271212
6Stephon GilmoreCB$95,412,294104125
7Bobby WagnerLB$91,087,49847401211
8Andrew LuckQB$87,000,0001-777
9Nick FolesQB$83,087,0008879125
10Olivier VernonEDGE$82,582,000726294
11Melvin IngramEDGE$80,751,000187119
12Harrison SmithS$80,319,17729171212
13Lavonte DavidLB$79,750,00058451212
14Kevin ZeitlerOG$78,570,0002713125
15T.Y. HiltonWR$74,512,29492771110
16Janoris JenkinsCB$73,038,9853923114
17Riley ReiffRT$72,130,000236125
18Josh NormanCB$69,743,944143125115
19Malik JacksonIDL$69,737,000137118104
20Akiem HicksIDL$66,340,0888969113
21Trumaine JohnsonCB$65,465,900654486
22Michael BrockersIDL$59,646,00014-8119
23Demario DavisLB$59,507,0007754125
24Alshon JefferyWR$58,163,941452195
25Brandon BrooksOG$55,839,4367651104
26Whitney MercilusEDGE$54,872,917260109
27Casey HaywardCB$53,300,0006235124
28Marvin JonesWR$52,979,412166138114
29Luke KuechlyLB$50,858,1779-2088
30Cordy GlennLT$50,073,529411186
31David DeCastroOG$49,319,90024-799
32Kelechi OsemeleOG$48,587,500602884
33Derek WolfeIDL$46,797,422363108
34Tyrone CrawfordIDL$45,000,000814799
35Dont’a HightowerLB$44,290,06425-101010
36Mike DanielsIDL$43,323,47213296107
37Danny TrevathanLB$43,177,588188151104
38Dre KirkpatrickCB$41,797,62517-2198
39Ben JonesOG$39,882,0009960114
40Bruce IrvinLB$39,706,71815-25116
41Mitchell SchwartzRT$39,200,00037-494
42Kelvin BeachumLT$39,107,000248206124
43Bobby MassieRT$37,934,96311269104
44Brock OsweilerQB$37,880,000571375
45Matt KalilLT$37,596,0004-4175
46Mark BarronS$36,794,1177-3982
47Dontari PoeIDL$35,396,00211-3685
48Nick PerryEDGE$32,712,50028-2077
49Vinny CurryIDL$29,549,5005910108
50Mohamed SanuWR$29,021,3198333104
51Lamar MillerRB$26,773,684974694
52J.R. SweezyOG$26,725,75022517395
53Tahir WhiteheadLB$23,981,44413885106
54Travis BenjaminWR$23,792,11110046104
55Dwayne AllenTE$23,057,07464975
56Mychal KendricksLB$21,816,54446-1096
57Bryan AngerP$20,053,0887013124
58Andre BranchEDGE$20,045,00038-2074
59Brandon MarshallWR$20,026,2141428371
60Justin BethelCB$19,884,559177117126
61Jeff AllenOG$18,705,31944-1775
62Greg ZuerleinK$18,600,000171109128
63Nigel BradhamLB$18,573,9121054284
64Coby FleenerTE$18,100,00034-3064
65Morris ClaiborneCB$16,319,0076-5985
66George IlokaS$15,376,94116710186
67Doug MartinRB$15,258,53031-3676
68Rhett EllisonTE$14,700,6251286085
69Dennis KellyRT$14,067,50015384114
70Senio KelemeteOG$13,155,88915181101
71Jarius WrightWR$12,782,0001184786
72Robert Griffin IIIQB$12,600,0002-7084
73Jack CrawfordIDL$11,952,50015885102
74Rishard MatthewsWR$11,602,11822715374
75Jeremy LaneCB$11,000,0001729766
76Zach BrownLB$10,847,35352-2474
77Nate EbnerS$10,579,688197120108
78Randy BullockK$10,515,04016183113
79Coty SensabaughCB$10,125,5301153684
80Kendall WrightWR$10,005,88220-6065
81Tavon WilsonS$9,578,12548-33104
82Tom ComptonRT$9,426,553193111114
83Michael FloydWR$9,091,61813-7074
84Jaye HowardIDL$8,500,0001143051
85Donald StephensonRT$8,375,25774-1164
86Josh RobinsonCB$7,987,76566-2084
87Kyle WilberLB$7,297,50011326106
88Ladarius GreenTE$7,150,0001102254
89Shea McClellinEDGE$7,075,00019-7064
90John HughesIDL$6,318,52987-364
91Tony BergstromC$6,291,23595494
92Joe LooneyC$6,229,5591172593
93Alfred MorrisRB$6,094,1181738084
94Blair WalshK$6,078,1251758164
95Keenan RobinsonLB$5,948,0001192464
96James HannaTE$5,500,0001869066
97Jared CrickIDL$4,882,0001262964
98Nathan StuparLB$4,210,01223013270
99Brad NortmanP$4,050,00020710864
100Sean SpenceLB$3,569,11886-1465

Draft Retention Rates in 2022

Every now and then I like to take a look at how teams have utilized draft picks in building their roster. To do this I look at past history in the NFL and determine what the odds are that a player would still be on the roster of a team based on when he was drafted and the round he was drafted in. While this does not measure the quality of the drafted players (they may still be on the team because of cap issues for example) it does give an idea of teams that are relying on draft picks to fill out a roster. Here is a look at the rankings for 2022 of all players drafted between 2019 and 2022.

TeamPicksPct Actually on TeamPct Expected on TeamPct Increase

The Rams lead the way this season with 22.5% increase over the expected amount who should be on the roster. Obviously, that has not helped the Rams this year who have struggled as have the Browns, Packers, and Cardinals. In all these cases I would consider the percentage of draft picks to be tied somewhat to the salary cap woes of the teams and in the Browns case to the lack of draft picks expected in the future due to the Watson trade. The Chiefs at number two look to be positioned nicely for the future.

On the bottom end you have the Jaguars which is not a surprise since they have changed direction so often in the last few years. The Jets at number 31 did surprise me a little but basically they have been a team that is a bit boom or bust in the draft with the good ones being good and the bad ones being shuffled away. The Raiders and Texans at 30 and 29 are no shocker. They have been terrible at nearly every aspect of team building as have the Panthers.

Here is how this would look as a graph with the league broken up into four quadrants

Maximizing Roster Construction by Valuing Positions in the NFL Draft

Last year as we headed into the NFL draft I took a look at how we should put premiums on certain positions at the top of the draft by comparing salary cap benefits and free agent availability of players at each position. Last year I took a short term view of the league and wanted to expand on it to include more data by looking at the last six years of free agent data.

The first thing I did was go back to 2017 an for each year look at the top 20 contracts, as ranked by annual contract value, and determined how many of the players were acquired in free agency. This is extremely important when determining how we are going to build a team in the NFL since we have to have access to talent and if we pass on a specific position in the draft we should know if we have an alternative route to acquiring that talent.

The second thing I wanted to look at was what financial benefit exists by drafting a player. To calculate this I used our projection for the four year cost of the 16th pick of the draft and compared it to the cost of the 10th highest paid player at a position. This is important because while the draft always gives a team access to low cost talent, the spread between a free agent value and a draft slot varies greatly position by position. Every dollar saved in the draft gives a team more money to spend on the rest of the roster to better the team. Here are how the numbers worked out since 2017.

The teams in the bottom right quadrant should be the premium positions to draft. Availability is historically low in free agency and the cost to acquire a player at those positions is very high. QB obviously has the highest value and I think I would put wide receiver as the 2nd most valuable. The next three- Edge, left tackles, and interior defensive line- I think you can argue about how to rank. Edge has become more available in free agency in recent years while left tackle sees no movement. Often the interior players can be found in later rounds easier than the edge and left tackle.  At all these positions the players will likely live up to the contract even if they are not a star simply because the cost is so cheap. The only risk is if they are a total bust.

The bottom left quadrant has positions with low availability but limited cost benefits of drafting in the first round. There is no real argument to draft a running back in the first round but if your hope was to find the top line player who is 23, then you have to draft them, but no real reason to do so early. Linebacker has seen more availability and in a first round should only be selected if there is a pretty big gap between that player and the next available of the premium players.

Top top right contains just one position-cornerback. There is a clear financial benefit to drafting a corner but there are many avenues to finding good cornerbacks. I think it makes sense to draft over the LB/RB quadrant in all cases but there probably needs to be a reasonable gap between the best corner available and the best edge/lt/wr, etc… to justify picking the corner.

Finally, the top left quadrant are the positions that there is no need to draft in the first round. Usually, these positions are not drafted too often that high but every now and then we get “unicorn” talk and the players get selected. Rarely does it lead to a real unicorn impact on a team. These positions are tight end, safety, center, right tackle, and guard.

I know as we get wrapped up in BPA we will say that this makes little sense but lets just illustrate how this could work in practice. Last year the Falcons were faced with a decision between drafting tight end Kyle Pitts or wide receiver Ja’Marr Chase.  Both had excellent rookie seasons but let’s see the impact on the Falcons.

Draft Cost$8,227,624$8,227,624
FA TE/WR$18,000,000$12,500,000
Total Cost$26,227,624$20,727,624

In the Pitts scenario we have to go into free agency and find a WR. That would be a player like Kenny Golladay/Christian Kirk. Our total cost is $26.2M and that assumes we can sign the WR. Had they drafted Chase they could go and sign a tight end for $12.5M(Hunter Henry) and have a total cost of $20.7 million invested. That would have given Atlanta an extra $5.5 million a year to work with. On top of that the talent pool is somewhat better at tight end and almost every year you can find decent players. Wide receiver you often have to hope to find a player who outplays his contract similar to Robert Woods with the Rams. While it is doubtful that either position would ever have the best player available in free agency the Bengals wound up with the upside of a $21-$24 million per year player while the Falcons have a $15-$16 million a year player within the current market.

I put together a chart that adds a premium for each position based on their salary cap benefit as well as the difficulty in finding a player in a free agency. The adjustment is the premium relative to each position. I added a 6 year and 3 year look at free agency is one wants to focus more on modern trends in free agent decision making.

PositionSalary Cap BenefitCap Benefit over AverageTop 20 Signed in Free Agency (6Y)Free Agent Benefit (6Y)Avg. Adjustment (6Y)Top 20 Signed in Free Agency (3Y)Free Agent Benefit (3Y)Avg. Adjustment (3Y)

It is clear why the NFL values the QB so highly while over the long term wide receiver is a clear 2nd. However if focusing more on recent history teams have been so reluctant to let their tackles walk in free agency you can make a strong argument that left tackle is more valuable in a draft. If trades for veteran receivers also continues to pick up steam I think that also strengthens left tackle a bit but it is certainly close.  The defensive line has dropped in recent years but is strong overall.

I was actually a little surprised to see corner, safety, and linebacker so close with linebacker falling more recently. I think when you get into things like the quality of lower cost free agents and the upside with the top players, corner should get the nod but there certainly could be some arguments that could be made.

Guard, center, and right tackle are the three spots where I’m not sure any case could or should be made to take in the first round unless there is simply nobody else available.  

Valuing the Top Trade Ups in the 2021 NFL Draft

The concept of trading up in the NFL Draft is always a hot topic. Almost every team that trades up gives up far too much for a trade up but the trade is quickly defended because of the player that is selected.  The basic defense is every draft pick made by every other team is basically just a guy but this one particular player targeted by my team is special. Why?  Well football that’s why. Historically the trade up team actually “wins” 20 to 25% of the time so there is a chance that those saying it was a great trade are correct. With that in mind I thought what if we came up with a way to measure that “specialness”.

One of the things that I’ve mentioned through the years and I believe discussed on the podcast last week is that trade charts should never be static. The charts need to be dynamic to account for various factors with a primary one being the positional strength of the selection- a QB for example should cost more than a running back because he is far more valuable to a team. But static charts are what we have always used and so we usually look at trades that way.

When Brad and I worked on the Drafting Stage we wanted to take positional variability out of the equation since we were making a static chart based on average contract outcomes. Using salary data alone was skewing results because a “bust” of a QB (think Marcus Mariota) would outearn a solid hit at a less expensive position. To make the chart position independent we restated everyone’s salary based on the market conditions at the time, thus turning the $9 million QB into something like a 30% value while the $13 million running back would be like a 90% value, solving the problem of market inequalities.

We converted these percentages into a point system because, well that is what everyone does, but what if we utilized those percentages to make our draft chart dynamic to evaluate the draft trades?  What I did here was calculate the average of the top five contracts at every position and multiplied that by the percentage value of every pick. For example the top pick in the draft is expected to be worth 98.3% making Trevor Lawrence worth, on average, $37.8 million per year in today’s NFL market.

Since teams that trade up are trading up for a player we can calculate the expected return based on the specific position that they draft. Likewise we can determine the trade away numbers by taking into account the average result of the picks they traded away. To do that we multiply each pick by the average top 5 positional salary which is about $17.8M with QBs taken out of the list. We don’t use positions here because the trade down is blind. I also used the blind number if a team that traded up received a 2nd pick as part of the trade. As for future considerations I value those simply as being a middle of the round pick the following year or years. You can discount if you want but I just wanted to see the actual potential value being given up not weighing whether or not that how unimportant that is to my situation.

If we add the numbers all together we can determine how much value the teams wound up down in a trade up. By looking at this as a salary we can also determine the exact amount that the player they traded up for would need to add to his expected value to “balance out the trade”. Hence we can see just how special the player has to be to justify the trade.

I only looked at trade ups into the first and second round this year but also included a very oddball trade that the Texans made which included a future pick.

12. Browns Select LB Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah- $1.040 Million Given Up

SelectionExpected Value AddedTradedExpected Value Lost

Trading up for a linebacker is one of those decisions that is questionable. It is a position available in free agency and a position that ranks lower on the salary scale despite the presence of a few albatross contracts. Still as far as overpayments go the Browns did not do bad here at all losing about $1M in value. Owusu-Koramoah should bring in $5.1M in value to the team and they need him to be around $6M. That is the equivalent of a jump from what the market perceives AJ Klein to be compared to Jayon Brown. That is a reasonable ask.

11. Bears Select QB Justin Fields-$1.259 Million Given Up

SelectionExpected Value AddedTradedExpected Value Lost

While the Giants are rightfully being praised for accepting this deal since they were not taking a QB this is also a no brainer for the QB starved Bears. Despite giving up four selections Chicago only comes out about $1.3 million in the red because the pick was used on such a high value position. Depending on how next years 1 turns out the trade could slant more or less in their favor.  A $1M difference in the QB market is the difference between Carson Wentz and Jared Goff, whatever that may be. It is worth nothing that there are really no QBs that fit this salary range (Teddy Bridgewater and Nick Foles are the most recent) so Fields will either blow past this number or fall far below it. Chicago has some insurance against next years 1 being extra high due to having a veteran QB who may play some this year on a veteran team that has been decent the last few years .

10. Eagles Select WR DeVonta Smith-$1.491 Million Given Up

SelectionExpected Value AddedTradedExpected Value Lost

The Eagles are one of the smarter teams in the NFL and this move fits that mold giving up under $1.5M to make a bit of a leap in the first round for basically a 3rd round pick. By taking a receiver they take a premier position which is a decent use of the trade up. A $1.5 million leap is more or less the difference between Tyler Boyd and Corey Davis, so not something where we would require a massive jump in performance to make the trade worthwhile. Basically they need him to be a top 20 receiver to make this fair.

9. 49ers Select QB Trey Lance-$2.422 Million Given Up

SelectionExpected Value AddedTradedExpected Value Lost

This is a trade that San Francisco will take heat on because they misread the market for QBs in the draft but one that stands a reasonable chance of paying off. Lance would need to give the 49ers about $33 million in value which means he needs to be Kirk Cousins. At $30 million he would be closer to Ryan Tannehill. Im not sure there is an appreciable difference between those two in reality but that gives you the idea of the type of player Lance has to be to make the trade one the 49ers won’t regret. Due to them giving up two first round picks and a chance that one of them could be a very high pick in Lance busts this is a much riskier trade than the Bears one, but it did give the 49ers the ability to pick their guy here.  

8. Raiders Select S Trevon Moehrig-$2.727 Million Given Up

SelectionExpected ValueTradedExpected Value

This is very similar to trading up for a linebacker in that it makes little sense given the positional value where the team actually gives up more by taking a safety than they would sitting pat and “being forced” to take another player. A safety at 43 would be expected to bring about $5.2 million in value to the team which is around the Chuck Clark/Eric Rowe salary range. He will need to be in the Rayshawn Jenkins range to make up the difference. What really ruins this for the Raiders was giving up that second high pick but only getting back number 230. They should have gotten a higher selection in return somewhere around 160. That was where they lost out.

7. Bears Select OT Teven Jenkins- $2.82 Million Given Up

SelectionExpected Value AddedTradedExpected Value Lost

This was a harder trade to judge because at the time of the draft I would have considered Jenkins a right tackle which would have put the Bears over $4 million down in the trade. I split the value between the two positions which now makes much more sense for Chicago. This is one of those positions where there are no real comparables at $6.5 million (Riley Reiff is around that number but is an older player) so this is either going to be a home run for the Bears as competent starters at left tackle are worth $14 million a year or a flop as non competent left tackles make about $2 million a year. If he does play right tackle he would need to be a top 10 player at the position to make it an even trade.

6. Broncos Select RB Javonte Williams- $2.924 Million Given Up

SelectionExpected Value AddedTradedExpected Value Lost

I hated this trade when it happened and was actually surprised it wasn’t worse than this. Why anyone packages a second useful pick to move up five spots to grab a running back is beyond me The Broncos expected value here is that of a Kenyan Drake and they will need Williams to wind up being looked at more like Melvin Gordon, who coincidentally is on the Broncos. That would require Williams to be the 8th best back in the NFL. Unlike the other players on this list there is usually little value in the RB beyond the first four years so this is probably a tough one to justify but not as bad as I thought.

5. Texans Select WR Nico Collins- $4.436 Million Given Up

SelectionExpected Value AddedTradedExpected Value Lost

This is the lone pick I looked at that was not a 1st or 2nd round pick because it was just so bizarre. The team gives up a 4 an a 5 and a future 4 in order to jump into the 3rd round to take a receiver. The expected return here is about $5 million which is the David Moore class of receiver. They need him to nearly double his value to justify the trade and move into the Jamison Crowder/Robby Anderson production level. That 86% required increase is the 2nd highest in the draft this year. There is no explanation that makes any sense for this trade outside of them believing he is a first round talent that only they saw as a 1st rounder.  Given where this trade occurred this was probably the worst trade in the draft even if not the most costly.

4. Patriots Select DT Christian Barmore- $4.638 Million Given Up

SelectionExpected Value AddedTradedExpected Value Lost

The Patriots have been the most aggressive team this offseason and this trade was in line with that with the Patriots giving up two additional picks to jump 8 spots in the draft for Barmore. The expected production for an interior D-lineman at this spot would be similar to that of Roy Robertson-Harris and Davon Godchaux. The amount the Patriots gave up would need to put the pick closer to the Javon Hargrave/Stephon Tuitt/Akiem Hicks group. This would be an expected jump from around a top 25 player to just outside the top 10. That’s a gigantic leap.

3. Dolphins Select WR Jaylen Waddle- $4.863 Million Given Up

SelectionExpected Value AddedTradedExpected Value Lost

I defended this trade for the Dolphins when it was made with the expectation they were either still aiming for a QB or hoping to trade back with a QB needy team. Instead they end up trading an extra first round pick for a wide receiver who winds up not even being the top receiver taken. When they made this trade the board was pretty much set to where you knew they were getting the leftovers of the TE/WR group so its not as if they didn’t know what they were doing when they made this trade either. The expected return here is around the 15th highest paid receiver in the NFL and they will need him to him to play around the level of the top 5, similar to that of an Amari Cooper or Michael Thomas.

2. Dolphins Select RT Liam Eichenberg- $5.128 Million Given Up

SelectionExpected Value AddedTradedExpected Value Lost

This was another terrible trade for Miami giving up a 3rd next year that they hope everyone will forget about to move up 8 spots to take a position where the top players on average are drafted in the 4th round. They need to get nearly double the value from Eicenberg, about 10% more than the other two trades requiring a massive jump. They will need him to go from a projected level of around Zach Banner, around the 20th highest paid, to Bryan Bulaga who is the fifth highest paid. Now Eichenberg is versatile and perhaps could wind up at left tackle or guard which changes the equation and would not make it as bad as shown here but if right tackle is the spot they need him to be a top tier player.  

1. Jets Select G Alija Vera-Tucker- $6.801 Million Given Up

  SelectionExpected Value AddedTradedExpected Value Lost

The Jets, by far, gave up the most to trade up this year. Guard is one of the lower valued positions that a team can draft and the Jets lose value just based on that alone. The expected return for pick 14 would be around $8 million for a guard, around the level of player as Gabe Jackson- basically the 13th or so highest paid guard in the league. To balance out the trade the Jets need him to increase that figure to $14.8 million. Among players on a multi-year contract that would mean he has to end up the second highest paid guard in the NFL. That’s a huge hill to climb and a very bullish assessment by the Jets as it would be the highest expectation level for any player in this years draft.