By Football Outsiders staff writerTUESDAY, October 18, 2018 — A couple of weeks ago, I posted a piece called “NFL draft prospects are not as smart as they seem.”
That was a reasonable take, but I also included some context.
In the months since, there have been more and more people questioning the notion that NFL draft prospects were better than what the analytics team had said they were.
There are more than a few articles out there that take a look at the numbers and come to the conclusion that these players were a lot better than the data.
The reason they’re better than numbers is because they are predictive.
If a player is really good at something, he should be able to predict the talent that will come his way.
This isn’t just the case with football, though.
In fact, predictive modeling is becoming increasingly popular, particularly in sports analytics.
It’s a big step forward from the days of using “probability” and “prediction” in the same sentence.
So I decided to do a little more research to see what the numbers say about this phenomenon.
I also wanted to get an idea of how these players have been doing as rookies.
As of this writing, I have a sample size of 13, including three quarterbacks (I’m not counting the two defensive backs), seven defensive backs and two offensive linemen.
The sample size also includes nine receivers, seven running backs, one wide receiver and three wide receivers and tight ends.
If you have any other players in your league who would like to get in on the discussion, I’d love to hear about it.
To get started, here are some quick notes on the methodology I used: A sample size is defined as “a group of players” with a mean of 10 players.
This means that each player has a chance of making the list of the 13, with the highest likelihood being the highest player on the list.
A player was considered an “NFL prospect” if he was drafted in the first three rounds.
The first round is when teams draft players, so the players that were picked between Rounds 2-4 are the most likely to make the cut.
The list is based on an average of players who were available to play, but not necessarily signed, for the last four seasons.
It includes players who played in the last 12 weeks of the regular season and players who had played in more than one game.
A team’s projected draft picks (points for each player) is based off its actual draft position (points minus points for each additional player).
A team is awarded points for wins, losses, tie games, first-year eligibility, third-year status and first-round selections.
I took a weighted average of the top 50 overall picks for each round, so that the most successful team had the most points.
I excluded rookies who were on injured reserve, as those were considered undrafted players and the point totals for those players were also weighted.
The rankings were weighted based on the average of all draft positions in each round.
Here’s what the top-ranked team had as of Oct. 10: 1.
Dallas Cowboys (1,521,936) 2.
Jacksonville Jaguars (1) 3.
Seattle Seahawks (2) 4.
Minnesota Vikings (1.5) 5.
Buffalo Bills (1.)
New Orleans Saints (2.5.)
Cincinnati Bengals (2.)
New York Giants (2)(5) 9.
Miami Dolphins (3) 10.
Indianapolis Colts (3.5)(6) 11.
Pittsburgh Steelers (4) 12.
Atlanta Falcons (5) 13.
Kansas City Chiefs (6.5)* 14.
Tennessee Titans (8) 16.
Dolphins (8.5-17.5*) 17.
Chicago Bears (9) 18.
Cleveland Browns (9.5)–19.
Denver Broncos (10) 20.
Tennessee Texans (11) 21.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers (11)* 22.
Arizona Cardinals (12) 23.
Seattle (12)* 24.
New England Patriots (12.5-) 25.
New Jersey Giants (13) 26.
Detroit Lions (13.5*) 27.
San Francisco 49ers (14) 28.
Indianapolis (14)* 29.
Miami Panthers (14.5**) 30.
Pittsburgh Titans (15)* 31.
New Zealand Warriors (15.5***) 32.
Jacksonville Cardinals (16) 33.
Indianapolis Dolphins (16.5%)* 34.
Carolina Panthers (17) 35.
Arizona Cowboys (18) 36.
Detroit Titans (18.5%) 37.
New Haven Patriots (18%) 38.
Tampa Jets (19) 39.
New Delhi Raiders (19.5+) 40.
Pittsburgh Browns (19%) 41.
Tampa Jaguars (19%**) 42.
Washington Redskins (20) 43.
Baltimore Ravens (20%) 44