N.F.L. Draft 2019: The Cardinals Pick … ?

Oklahoma’s Kyler Murray is widely expected to be picked first over all in Thursday’s N.F.L. draft.CreditSue Ogrocki/Associated Press

The 2019 N.F.L. draft will take place in Nashville, with 254 picks spread out over three days. Day 1 will feature the first round (32 picks), and will undoubtedly change the fortunes of several franchises. The New York Times will provide live updates on each of Thursday’s selections as soon as the draft begins at 8 p.m. Eastern.

  • No consensus No. 1 pick and a persistent belief that the honor will go to Oklahoma’s Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback? This draft sounds a lot like last year’s. Kyler Murray isn’t a carbon-copy of Baker Mayfield, regardless of the parallels, but he gave up on a baseball career and declared for the draft when it became clear that he’d be among the first players chosen. The fact that a team with an ideal coach for him (Arizona’s Kliff Kingsbury) is picking first is just icing on the cake.

  • Murray may be the first player picked, but most analysts have pegged Ohio State’s Nick Bosa as the most talented member of this draft class. He missed time last season after core surgery, but his explosiveness could make him a star, just like his brother Joey of the Los Angeles Chargers.

  • The top quarterbacks, beyond Murray, are Ohio State’s Dwayne Haskins and Missouri’s Drew Lock, but there has been some recent enthusiasm for Duke’s Daniel Jones. It’s possible all four quarterbacks will be taken in the first round.

  • Tight ends rarely go in the first 10 picks, but Iowa’s T.J. Hockenson seems like a good bet to achieve that rare distinction. In something far rarer, Noah Fant, another Hawkeye, may join Hockenson in the first round. No college has ever produced two first-round tight ends in the same year.

  • It may be a long wait for a running back. Alabama’s Josh Jacobs is the best available option, followed by Penn State’s Miles Sanders, but neither is expected to be a top-15 pick, and it’s entirely possible both will slip out of the first round.

  • Fans have a hard time getting excited about offensive linemen, but Florida’s Jawaan Taylor is likely to come off the board early, as is Boston College’s Chris Lindstrom.

  • This draft is considered deep in several positions, but the first day may have relatively few defensive backs taken. Georgia’s Deandre Baker, Washington’s Byron Murphy and Louisiana State’s Greedy Williams could all be first-round cornerbacks, but teams may not be willing to blow a first-day pick on any of the top safeties, a group that includes Virginia’s Juan Thornhill, Mississippi State’s Johnathan Abram and Maryland’s Darnell Savage Jr.

Some predraft reading:

Source: NYT

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