It’s almost time for the NFL Draft! And once the NFL Draft hits, that means that Fantasy Football Drafts are right around the corner! Exclamation points!
I saw this Infographic and thought it would be a great thing to share just before the NFL Draft. I love crap like this! Let’s discuss!
Top 10 NFL Draft Picks
While quarterback and offensive tackles make a lot of sense as the positions most drafted in the first 10 picks (since 2002), I was mildly surprised that wide receivers ranked third, and that linebackers ranked seventh! I bet that’s not true back in the ‘80s. If I wasn’t lazy, I’d go back and look.
Awww, hell, curiosity got the best of me.
From 1980 to 1989, there were 17 linebackers chosen in the top 10 picks of those 10 drafts. By comparison, there were only seven wide receivers taken, including Irving Fryar, who went No. 1 overall in 1984 to the Patriots. (Also interesting was that just nine quarterbacks were taken in the top 10 picks in those drafts.)
So linebackers were drafted that early more than twice as much as in the 2002-2011 time period, and half as many wide receivers were taken early back then. It’s definitely a sign of the passing times we live in, but the linebacker thing is still interesting to me.
Pro Bowl Starters
Look at that small dip late in the first round of the Pro Bowl starters image. That’s intriguing if only because most of the players taken there are still obviously very good players, and they were taken by teams that obviously did well enough to have late picks. So why weren’t they successful? Maybe because they were stuck behind starters and had fewer opportunities? Weird.
NFL Draft Facts
The Ernie Davis thing sticks out for several reasons.
1. He won the Heisman trophy at Syracuse a couple years after Jim Brown should have won it, becoming the first black player to win the award.
2. The Browns traded for him – when they still had Jim Brown? WTF? The Redskins were owned by a noted racist in George Preston Marshall – and they were the last team to end up signing a black player in the NFL (btw, they’re still called Redskins, interestingly enough). So Washington reluctantly chose Davis, who then demanded a trade rather than play for Marshall.
3. He also played basketball for Syracuse, and is now the reason (along with Jim Brown and Floyd Little) why the No. 44 is so revered at that school. As a matter of fact, the university was granted permission by the U.S. Postal Service to change their zip code to 13244.
4. Davis and Brown never played together at Cleveland because Davis was diagnosed with leukemia while he prepared for training camp. This was the Len Bias tragedy without the cocaine.
5. Davis never played a game for the Browns, who eventually retired his No. 45 jersey.
If Brown and Davis played together, I imagine it would have been like a much more successful version of any Thunder and Lightning backfields we’ve ever seen (Bo Jackson and Marcus Allen might be the best tandem ever). It’s also possible Brown would have enjoyed playing more, and not retired after just nine seasons.
I hope you enjoyed this Infographic on the NFL Draft – and I hope you’re looking forward to this year’s event as much as I am!
Click on the infographic to blow it up!
© 2013 InetSoft Technology Corp.
David Gonos spent 5 years as a CBSSports.com Senior Fantasy Writer and three more years writing with SI.com. Over the past 17 years, his work has been published on NFL.com, MLB.com, FanDuel, FoxSports.com and USA Today. Since 2001, he has been tracking down the Top 50-plus Free Fantasy Football Draft Tools online. You can contact David Gonos here.