I will assume that most of you have made good use of one of the GBN’s best Draft tools… the Picks by Team chart. Nothing I’ve seen elsewhere packs more info into a couple of pages than Colin’s summary. So let me tell you what I have gleaned from his spread sheet/chart.
1) There are only 253 Draft PIcks scheduled this year. A normal Draft will contain 256 Picks… 7 full rounds of 32 picks, plus as provided by the CBA, up to another full round (32) of Compensatory Picks based on VFA losses by teams and how those signees performed.
2) The 3 missing Picks are; PATRIOTS @ #32 as punishment for Deflate Gate, RAMS @ 156 for using a Pick in the Supplemental Draft on ISIAH BATTLE/OT/Clemson last summer, FALCONS @ 160 for piping in canned crowd noise during game action.
3) An interesting side-note to me is the fact that there were so many meaningful VFA signings last Spring that all 32 permitted Compensatory Picks were allocated such that none were available by the end of Round 6. Go check the records for this decade and you find Round 7 always finishing the Draft with a slew of Compensatory Picks. Not this year folks.
Be advised that the League closely guards the exact criteria and how they are factored into Compensatory Pick awards. My mind always conjures a picture of a League secretary throwing darts at a large wall chart with team decals scattered about it.
4) The most Draft Picks at this time belong to the 49’ers, with 12. For once one of the worst teams actually has a large number of picks. Next up are the PATRIOTS (11), BROWNS (10), BRONCOS (10), LIONS (10). These are the only double-digit pick teams.
5) I am not sure if it is coincidental, or a sign of the value currently placed on Draft PIcks but not 1 team has extra picks in Round 1. The only team without a pick in Round 1 are the penalized PATRIOTS. THey are being hoarded like gold right now.
6) Throwing in Compensatory Picks I always figure the average team should have 8 Draft Picks each year. Therefore, one might make the assumption that teams lacking 7-8 selections are not living and dying with the Draft process.
The fewest Picks belong to the FALCONS with only 5 selections. Owner ARTHUR BLANK fired HC MIKE SMITH after last season but not his GM THOMAS DIMITROFF. Maybe overall lack of roster quality and depth in conjunction with only 5 Picks this year will put his job in jeopardy if another non Play-off season rolls around under his watch.
7) Seven other teams have 6 Picks for this Draft, meaning that 1/4 of the League’s teams are well below that team average of 8.
8) Just using the total number of Picks for a team can be misleading when gauging how much Draft Day optimism should be in play by fans of teams with extra selections. For instance, just like last year, the COWBOYS look to be in fine shape with 9 Picks in their quiver. But 4 of those Picks are in Round 6 (Pick 189 or later), which can often be a roll of the dice. On the other hand the RAVENS, also with 9 Picks, have 7 of those Picks falling before #135. I like their odds on improving their roster much better.
9) Getting back to Compensatory Picks for a bit, let me point out that 3 teams share the lead with 4 Compensatory Picks each: DALLAS, NEW ENGLAND & SAN FRANCISCO. 19 of 32 teams were not awarded any Compensatory Picks.
10) Let’s talk for a second about being vanilla in the Draft process. Hello, Cincinnati Bengals! The BENGALS are the only team in the League who are in possession of their 7 regularly scheduled Draft Picks, nothing more and nothing less. PAUL BROWN would be proud methinks.
11) Many folks talk about working the Draft, both in advance and during the annual proceedings. Despite not being awarded any Compensatory Picks DA BEARS & EAGLES each have 9 Picks scheduled for April thanks to trading and maneuvering. That’s getting it done the old-fashioned way.
12) It’s not reflected in the Picks chart, but please remember that when we speak of the Draft Process we must also remember Day 4 of the Draft itself, when most teams go wild racing around to sign the leftovers, which are most commonly referred to as Undrafted Rookie Free Agents, URFA. Keep scouting my friends.
Just a few thoughts for you to chew on. Whether or not this will be a free wheeling, trade mart Draft or a patient hold your place in line process is yet to be determined. But remember one thing my Draftnik friends… we are now in the month of disinformation when you hear rumors about team Draft plans. On the whole don’t believe what you hear.