This year’s first-overall pick isn’t so clear, and it hasn’t been that way for a while. The last five picks to start the draft have been immensely clear.
Four Quarterbacks and one defensive end, the last five NFL draft picks were electric college stars. Three of the five won Heisman Trophy awards, two of the five have already been named to the Pro Bowl twice, and one has made it all the way to the Super Bowl.
Here are the rankings of the last five first-overall picks as we inch closer to the 2022 NFL Draft.
5. Trevor Lawrence, Jacksonville Jaguars (2021)
It’s probably cruel to place Lawrence last in these rankings, but in his one season, he didn’t show the potential we all know he has.
He really didn’t have any help on the offensive side of the ball or the defensive side of the ball, and the Urban Meyer fiasco only made his rookie year that much more of a disaster. Once he had a stable coaching system for support, he played a bit better.
Now under Doug Pederson, he’s keen on improving upon his touchdown to interception ratio, which was 12:17 last year. It’s very likely that if these rankings were to be redone in a year’s time, he’d be off the bottom.
4. Baker Mayfield, Cleveland Browns (2018)
There’s a lot to say about Baker’s career thus far in his first four NFL seasons. The one word to describe him perfectly in every aspect seems to be ‘inconsistent’.
He hasn’t really been able to string together multiple positive years of football, and his inability to stay on the field and keep healthy remains a problem.
Mayfield was replaced in Cleveland by Deshaun Watson, and he’ll never play for the Browns again.
A once-beloved player in the city of Cleveland, leading them to their first playoff win in decades, Mayfield has become the scapegoat of the city.
He’s thrown 92 touchdowns and 56 interceptions in his career so far, so there’s some definite talent to capitalize on if you’re another team looking for someone to lead your team.
3. Kyler Murray, Arizona Cardinals (2019)
Kyler was an MVP favorite as the season began last season, but his positioning waned a bit as the season progressed. Still, Murray had an incredible third season at the helm of the Arizona Cardinals’ offense.
An Offensive Rookie of the Year award winner, as well as a two-time Pro-Bowler, Murray’s electric speed, and unquestionable arm power, won him nine games in the 2021-22 regular season.
His TD-INT ratio is 2:1 and he’s run for 20 TDs as well. He’s one of the best young quarterbacks and he’ll be an electric MVP pick for years to come.
2. Joe Burrow, Cincinnati Bengals (2020)
Burrow’s rookie year was halted early due to one of the worst offensive lines ever leading to a horrible knee injury. Still, though, he recovered and put together one of the best sophomore years for a QB the NFL has ever seen.
The 2019 Heisman Winner out of LSU won 10 games in the regular season, and another three for Cincinnati in the postseason en route to being half a second of time away from a Super Bowl ring.
He did go through a stretch last season of throwing picks while trying to force the ball to his star receiving corps, but he fixed it up and finished the year with over 40 total touchdowns. It’ll be very difficult to recreate the magic he showed this year, but with a revamped O-line and a Bengals team who lost very few of their starters from last year, if anyone’s able to do it, it’ll be Joey Franchise.
1. Myles Garrett, Cleveland Browns (2017)
Drafted a year earlier than Baker Mayfield, Garrett was the consensus first pick as a can’t-miss, elite pass rusher. The scouts definitely didn’t get him wrong, and he’s been a two-time Pro Bowler and one of the best pass rushers in the game, if not the very best of them all.
He’s been an All-Pro three times already in his first five seasons, and he’s recorded double-digit sacks in every year other than his rookie year.
Last year he got to the quarterback a whopping 16 times and recorded a career-high in defensive assists and tackles as well. He’s one of the most feared and unstoppable defensive players in the game, making him easily the most dominant of these five first-overall picks
Take a peek at our predictions for the top half of the first round this year!
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