Pre-NFL Draft Positional Rankings – Offense

The 2018 NFL Draft is not known as the most talented offensive draft, but there is plenty of starting level players available – especially in the top-100. The quarterbacks will command the most discussion, but the interior line and running back classes flash the most NFL-ready groups.

Rather than stopping with a top-5 ranking, the deeper dive presents a full top 10 that will show some of the mid to late-round options on offense as well. Disagree with any of the rankings? Let me know @Matt_LaPan on Twitter.

Quarterback: The quarterbacks are the talk of the 2018 NFL Draft, and are highlighted by an extremely top-heavy class. As many as six quarterbacks could go in the 1st Round – three of those likely going in order to start the draft. With so much strength at the top, it all comes down to preference in style.

Josh Rosen leads this class, showing the prototypical footwork and delivery. He does need to add some bulk to his frame in order to sustain the punishment at the NFL level. Sam Darnold does not trail far behind, however. He has an NFL-ready arm, but will need to work on his decision making or else he will get in trouble at the next level.

the group of Baker Mayfield, Lamar Jackson and Josh Allen all have bigger flaws to examine, and are the most contested in how to rank. Many rank Allen higher due to his ridiculously strong arm, but he still has plenty to prove for this list.

Outside of the top-six, the quarterback class leaves a lot to be desired. Many of the later round QB’s are backups, at best. If a team needs a quarterback and are not willing to move up very high – it could be a rough year.

  1. Josh Rosen
  2. Sam Darnold
  3. Baker Mayfield
  4. Lamar Jackson
  5. Josh Allen
  6. Mason Rudolph
  7. Luke Falk
  8. Mike White
  9. Kyle Lauletta
  10. Logan Woodside

Running Back: There is a lot of a lot of justified attention to Saquon Barkley in the draft, but he is just the leader of a stacked class that has legit NFL talent across the board. Barkley is the all-around stud that warrants a to-10 selection. He runs to all gaps, catches the ball well and pass protects. A deserved RB1 designation.

Not far behind is Derrius Guice. The LSU product is a violent runner with power, speed and great vision. He is a stout, proficient pass protector who is primed to be the feature back in a good system. In nearly any other year, he would be an unquestioned RB1.

Sony Michel and Ronald Jones II highlight a secondary group of backs that could see the end of the 1st Round, and would be a great value at the top of the 2nd Round. Both have great vision, speed and big-play potential. Freeman and Chubb both are perfect fits in a multi-back system as well. The group is strong from top to bottom, and could end up making the biggest impact of any group in the draft.

  1. Saquon Barkley
  2. Derrius Guice
  3. Sony Michel
  4. Ronald Jones II
  5. Royce Freeman
  6. Nick Chubb
  7. Rashaan Penny
  8. Kerryon Johnson
  9. Mark Walton
  10. Kalen Ballage

Wide Receiver: There might not be a marquee name in this group of wide receivers, but there is plenty of NFL talent. Cortland Sutton leads the class with size, speed, great hands and a non-stop motor. He still needs to work on polishing his route running, but is ready to step in as a day one impact player. He is just above Calvin Ridley, who is an explosive athlete with big-play potential and good hands. His lack of good quarterback play at Alabama hurts his stock, and he should make a lot of plays at the next level.

Anthony Miller and Christian Kirk both make the top-five as receivers who will likely work out of the slot, but both can make big plays all over the field. Both run really strong routes and catch everything. D.J. Moore is another top-five receiver with big-play potential on the outside and a great release.

The talent outside the top-five group gives this class a good amount of depth with players such as James Washington, Dante Pettis and Deon Cain to provide punch on the outside for exams in need of big plays. The class might not produce any All-Pro’s right away, it will bring more than one immediate starter into the fold.

  1. Courtland Sutton
  2. Calvin Ridley
  3. Anthony Miller
  4. D.J. Moore
  5. Christian Kirk
  6. James Washington
  7. Dante Pettis
  8. Deon Cain
  9. Michael Gallup
  10. DaeSean Hamilton

Tight End: The tight end group in 2018 leaves a lot to be desired. There are plenty of athletes and a few good blockers, but there is not a top-flight talent available. The group could grow, but for now the athletic players such as Gesicki and Andrews will be the most talked about. Both Goedart and Hurst are a little more complete, but still lack the ability to draw defensive assignments from top safeties. 2018 is not the year to need a tight end in the draft.

  1. Dallas Goedart
  2. Hayden Hurst
  3. Mike Gesicki
  4. Mark Andrews
  5. Tony Fumagali
  6. Durham Smythe
  7. Jaylen Samuels
  8. Ian Thomas
  9. Dalton Schultz
  10. Jordan Akins

Offensive Tackle: When there is no consensus top offensive tackle, that is generally a problem for teams in need. There is talent in this class, but it is largely unproven and will likely not go overly high. Connor Williams is the top talent in the class – flashing good athleticism, solid footwork and a good anchor. Mike McGlinchey is the top tackle to many, but his play against speed rushers leaves a little on the table that could hurt him at the next level. Both are day one starters, however, and should go in the top 20 picks.

The big question of the group is Orlando Brown. After a great collegiate career at Oklahoma, he has pretty much bombed the pre-draft process. His tape is too good to deny, however. He is a road grater in the run game and has a devastating initial punch. He will need some time to work on his foot speed, especially against better rushers.

There is a lot of hype surrounding both Brian O’Neil and Kolton Miller, as both show great athleticism for the position (especially Miller), but both need a good amount of work before they are ready for the NFL. O’Neil has more polish going forward while Miller has the depth in his kick to get back against speed rushers.

  1. Connor Williams
  2. Mike McGlinchey
  3. Orlando Brown
  4. Chukwuma Okorafor
  5. Tyrell Crosby
  6. Brian O’Neil
  7. Kolton Miller
  8. Jamarco Jones
  9. Martinas Rankins
  10. Ike Boettger

Interior Linemen: There might never be another year with the strength that the 2018 NFL Draft has along the interior line. Any of the top six players could be day one starters and make an impact. Quenton Nelson is the top player in the entire class and is as complete a draft prospect as a team could hope for. He is dominant in the run game, bullies opponents in the pass game and immediately steps in as a natural leader.

After Nelson, Isaiah Wynn, Billy Price (guard or center) and Will Hernandez are all great options with starter traits in both the run and pass game. Price has the opportunity to start in either position, much like Pat Elflein in the 2017 NFL Draft. Both Daniels and Ragnow are immediate starters at center as well, rounding out a really strong class. There is also a lot of value in tough players such as Mahon or Teller in the mid rounds.

  1. Quenton Nelson (G)
  2. Isaiah Wynn(G)
  3. Billy Price (C)
  4. Will Hernandez (G)
  5. James Daniels (C)
  6. Frank Ragnow (C)
  7. Braden Smith (G)
  8. Wyatt Teller (G)
  9. Brendan Mahon (G)
  10. Scott Queensbury (G)