Analysis  

 

Projecting top 100 NFL rookies of 2018: Players 1-25

Print

Players selected in the 2018 NFL Draft are getting acquainted with their new clubs and hoping to make their presence felt right away as they transition to the next level. Here's a ranking of the top 100 rookies based on who will make the biggest impact in Year One.

RANK

1

Saquon Barkley, RB, Giants

With big-strike ability on all three downs, Barkley can transform the Giants' offense with an offensive line that should be improved thanks to the additions of Will Hernandez, Nate Solder and Patrick Omameh.

RANK

2

Quenton Nelson, OG, Colts

There isn't a player in this draft class who is more likely to be an immediate and effective full-time starter.

RANK

3

Bradley Chubb, OLB, Broncos

The Broncos pick up the draft's premier pass rusher to work in tandem with Von Miller, which should bolster their 22nd-ranked total of 33 sacks in 2017.

RANK

4

Derwin James, S, Chargers

The Chargers got one of the best values of the first round, and a versatile player defensive coordinator Gus Bradley will love, when the former FSU star slipped to No. 17 overall.

RANK

5

Roquan Smith, LB, Bears

Where better than the Chicago Bears for the Butkus Award winner? Along with the talent of the draft's best linebacker, Smith will bring a Butkus-like edge to that defense.

RANK

6

Baker Mayfield, QB, Browns

Browns fans will be glad to learn they've added a quarterback who is more Russell Wilson-like than Johnny Manziel-like.

RANK

7

Minkah Fitzpatrick, DB, Dolphins

The Dolphins can do almost anything with Fitzpatrick in the secondary, but he's at his best in the nickelback spot, blanketing slot receivers.

RANK

8

Vita Vea, DT, Bucs

Pairing Vea with Gerald McCoy should make the Bucs' run defense a nightmare in the A and B gaps. His technique needs work, but with his size and strength, you can forget about driving him off of the line of scrimmage.

RANK

9

Josh Rosen, QB, Cardinals

Rosen's comfort in the pocket will suit him well in the NFL, and it won't hurt to have a future Hall of Famer to throw to in Larry Fitzgerald.

RANK

10

D.J. Moore, WR, Panthers

Moore, who ran a 4.42-second 40-yard dash at the NFL Scouting Combine, figures to be a nice complement to Devin Funchess, whose game is more about size than speed.

RANK

11

Sam Darnold, QB, Jets

In the former USC star, the Jets bring in the quarterback who, more than any other top QB prospect, can handle the pressure of playing in New York.

RANK

12

Tremaine Edmunds, LB, Bills

Linebackers who weigh 253 pounds and run the 40-yard dash in 4.54 seconds don't come around often. He can play inside or come off the edge, which will help give him every-down value in Buffalo.

RANK

13

Da'Ron Payne, DT, Redskins

Running the ball against the Redskins just got a lot tougher thanks to the addition of the most dominant defensive tackle Alabama has had under Nick Saban. Yes, moreso than Marcell Dareus.

RANK

14

Hayden Hurst, TE, Ravens

Hurst brings a blazing competitive fire and looks like a natural at the position despite playing TE for only two seasons.

RANK

15

Denzel Ward, CB, Browns

The draft's best cornerback prospect went a bit earlier than expected, but should fit nicely in Cleveland, where a young secondary gets even younger.

RANK

16

Mike McGlinchey, OT, 49ers

If you're going to invest a $137.5 million contract in QB Jimmy Garoppolo, you'd better invest something more in his health. McGlinchey will bring an immediate return on investment to that end.

RANK

17

Derrius Guice, RB, Redskins

Based on talent alone, the former LSU star could've been the second running back drafted instead of the seventh.

RANK

18

Harold Landry, OLB, Titans

The Titans get a slippery pass rusher to fill an area of need on the edge.

RANK

19

Christian Kirk, WR, Cardinals

In Kirk, the Cardinals not only get a natural slot receiver with excellent hands, but an explosive return specialist as well.

RANK

20

Mike Gesicki, TE, Dolphins

The Dolphins add a tight end in Gesicki who should make for a very difficult coverage matchup with his size and length.

RANK

21

D.J. Chark, WR, Jaguars

Following the offseason losses of Allen Robinson and Allen Hurns, the Jaguars needed a draft jolt at receiver, and Chark gives them a big-play threat.

RANK

22

Connor Williams, OL, Cowboys

In Williams, the Cowboys infuse another starter into one of the NFL's most talented offensive lines. He'll likely play left guard, which will allow La'el Collins to settle in at right tackle.

RANK

23

Maurice Hurst, DT, Raiders

Medical reports on the Raiders fifth-round pick might've cost him in the draft -- he was diagnosed with a heart condition at the NFL Scouting Combine -- but they don't cost him here. He's a first-round talent and an immediate impact starter in Oakland.

RANK

24

Billy Price, C, Bengals

The Bengals ranked No. 31 in the NFL in rushing last season and they continued to revamp their offensive line with Price, whose blend of athleticism and intelligence should help the club's running game.

RANK

25

Ronnie Harrison, S, Jaguars

A perfect addition to one of the NFL's best defenses, Harrison will bring an enforcer mentality in the mold of former Jaguar Donovin Darius.

Follow Chase Goodbread on Twitter @ChaseGoodbread.

Print

Headlines

The previous element was an advertisement.

NFL Shop