2019 NFL Draft Has Multiple Draft Firsts in Wild Weekend


Michael Markorch

NASHVILLE- For NFL fans, Christmas falls in April as the NFL Draft gives fans and teams new players to showcase in the upcoming season.

In the 2019 NFL Draft, however, fans were exposed to something other than new players.  This year’s draft had multiple draft firsts, including 4 out of the first 5 picks being front-seven players (Defensive Linemen/Linebackers).  

Ohio State defensive end Nick Bosa started the run on defenders, going second overall to the San Francisco 49ers.  The next four picks were all defensive players, and over 50% of the players selected in the first round were defensive players, a feat rarely seen in a league that seems to be moving towards the offensive game.

This seemed to still be the case when the draft opened with the Arizona Cardinals making the first selection, which was announced as Kyler Murray, a quarterback out of the University of Oklahoma.  

This pick was historic for multiple reasons.  First off, the Cardinals became the first team ever to draft a quarterback in the top ten in two consecutive years (Josh Rosen, 2018).  Murray also made history as the first player ever drafted first overall with a height under 6’0”, coming in at a stable 5’10”.

Murray and last year’s first overall pick Baker Mayfield became the first pair of players to be drafted first playing the same position and attending the same college.  Both players were also Heisman Trophy winners, college football’s most prestigious award.

The amount of defensive players selected in the draft may be displaying a culture shift in the NFL.  Some teams now seem to be angling towards stopping great quarterbacks instead of having great quarterbacks.  Teams are putting more of a premium on pass-rushers and defensive backs, the players most responsible for stopping the always growing passing attack.

Don’t worry though, this draft still had many surprises as every draft does.  The Giants, owners of the sixth overall pick, selected Daniel Jones, a project quarterback from Duke.  

This pick was shocking as Dwayne Haskins Jr. from Ohio State, who was thought to be a more polished quarterback, was still on the board.  Instead the Giants went for their guy and it will take about five years to figure out whether they got it right.

Also, many top tier players slipped into the second round and teams were able to take players they wanted with their first round picks later than expected.

Overall this was a crazy draft weekend in Nashville and now fans turn their attention to training camps and the preseason.  Be patient everybody, the new season is 128 days away!

PC: Getty Images, NFL Draft 2019