The Effect of Multiple First Round Draft Picks
08/28/2009 § Leave a comment
Every year, a few teams find themselves with multiple first round draft picks through various trades, whether they be past trades or deals struck that day. I took a look at the 19 teams who made more than one first round selection from 2004-2008, and found that 14 of them finished with a better regular season record the following year. One team (the 2004 New England Patriots) finished with the same record. Only four teams (21%) picked more than one player in the first round of the draft and finished the following season with a worse record.
Beyond that, another more intriguing pattern emerged. On average, the worse a team’s record was in the previous season, the more they improved the following year. The 14 teams that improved their records averaged only 5 wins in the previous season, while the teams who went backward (or stayed the same) averaged 10 wins.
Using the data from the previous five seasons, I set up a rough scale of expected improvement (or decline) based on the number of wins the previous season.
With this scale, I have projected the regular season records of the four teams who made multiple first round picks in the 2009 draft:
Detroit Lions: 2008 record – 0-16. Drafted QB Matthew Stafford (1) and TE Brandon Pettigrew (20). Projected 2009 record: 5-11
Green Bay Packers: 2008 record – 6-10. Drafted DT B.J. Raji (9) and LB Clay Matthews (26). Projected 2009 record: 9-7
Buffalo Bills: 2008 record – 7-9. Drafted DE Aaron Maybin (11) and C Eric Wood (28). Projected 2009 record: 9-7
Denver Broncos: 2008 record – 8-8. Drafted RB Knowshon Moreno (12) and LB Robert Ayers (18). Projected 2009 record: 9-7