One of the aspects that has been preached about throughout this draft from a number of outlets is that there is a segment of talent in the 2018 NFL Draft that trumps the others.
Then, well, things don’t necessarily get dicey, but it becomes a much more diverse group of talent.
When Peter King of MMQB was interviewing legendary NFL insider Gil Brandt the other day, Brandt agreed with this and went on to explain a little more:
“This is a draft where 13 to 17 guys I could point to and say for sure, This guy’s a first-round pick. After that, there’s a lot of starting-type players who could go anywhere. Let me put it to you this way: My guy who I have 21st overall on my list could go 64th. The guy I rank 47th could go 19th.
This is something I have preached at a couple of positions, mostly wide receiver and cornerback.
Denzel Ward is the best corner in the class according to NFL.com at a 6.31 grade and likely long gone before Arizona steps to the podium, the difference between NFL.com’s second ranked Carlton Davis (6.02) and 16th Tony Brown (5.6) is roughly the same in grade differential.
Calvin Ridley is graded by NFL.com as a 6.4, the next wide receiver is a 5.88, a difference of 0.52 points... There are 31 wide receivers graded from 5.88 to 5.36... 31!!!!
So, when you look at the grades for different sites, rankings, or a mock draft, ask yourself this... Would that player be considered the best player at their position?
For instance, in our community mock draft, the highest graded players left are:
Da’Ron Payne, DT, Alabama - 6.51
Derwin James, S, Florida State - 6.44
Calvin Ridley, WR, Alabama - 6.4
What that means?
The draft has a drop off after 10-15 players, but the next about 50-60 will have little difference that your scouting room better be able to detect and get right.