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2019 NFL Draft order: Cardinals No. 1; Broncos close in on top 10

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This is a look at the first-round order for the 2019 NFL Draft through Week 16. The order is determined by record, using strength of schedule as a tiebreaker. Keep in mind -- teams 21-32 would make the playoffs if the season ended today (the Rams, Saints, Chiefs, Chargers, Bears, Patriots, Texans, Cowboys and Seahawks have already clinched playoff spots). The draft order for playoff teams is determined by the results of postseason play.

It's almost time. We're six days away from locking in the first 20 picks of the 2019 draft -- well, until one of those picks is traded -- and the Cardinals find themselves in the driver's seat to kick off the festivities on April 25 in Nashville.

With the Raiders' beatdown of the Broncos on Monday night, Arizona is alone at the bottom of the standings (and top of the draft board) entering the final Sunday of the regular season, so the Cards are a loss at Seattle away from clinching the top pick.

Here's the first-round order heading into Week 17, along with the top three needs for each team.

Arrows indicate how far up or down a team has moved relative to last week.

PICK

1

Cardinals

Record: 3-12 (.520 strength of schedule)
Previous week: No. 1
This week's game: at SEA
Biggest needs: OL, WR, CB

Are the Cardinals going to somehow pull things together enough to beat a Seattle team that might be resting starters on Sunday and hand the first pick over to someone else? Right now, it's hard to imagine, given the ineptitude in Arizona, which will win four games or fewer for the first time since 2003. They picked Larry Fitzgerald, who might have just played his last home game with the Cards, third overall in the draft following that '03 season. If their top 2019 pick works out half as well as that one, they'll have merrier Christmases ahead.

PICK

2

49ers

1

Record: 4-11 (.484)
Previous week: No. 3
This week's game: at LAR
Biggest needs: Edge rusher, DB, LB

The Niners certainly looked like a team with bigger needs on offense than defense on Sunday, but as we all know -- this O has been decimated by injuries. Sure, more help for a healthy Jimmy G would be great, but the bigger needs are on defense, and John Lynch will be picking high enough to land a really nice player for that side of the ball from a class where D is the strength.

PICK

3

Jets

1

Record: 4-11 (.496)
Previous week: No. 4
This week's game: at NE
Biggest needs: Edge rusher, OL, WR

Sam Darnold is playing great football down the stretch and the Jets are continuing to lose -- this is ideal, given that they weren't going anywhere this season anyway. If I'm calling the shots for Gang Green this offseason, I'm using my massive amount of cap space to try to land the best offensive playmakers/linemen I can in free agency for Darnold, and then I'm spending my top pick on the best pass rusher available.

PICK

4

Raiders

2

Record: 4-11 (.533)
Previous week: No. 2
This week's game: at KC
Biggest needs: Edge rusher, DB, LB

There was a time this year when it looked like the Raiders would have at least two, and possibly three, picks inside the first half of Round 1, but turns out they'll have just one -- the first-rounders they acquired from the Bears and Cowboys via the Khalil Mack and Amari Cooper trades will be outside the top 20, as both of those clubs have clinched their division titles. Then again, the Silver and Black could always package some of that draft capital to move up the board. If they're going to return from the abyss, Jon Gruden will need to start by restocking a pass rush that has recorded a league-low 13 sacks.

PICK

5

Lions

1

Record: 5-10 (.509)
Previous week: No. 6
This week's game: at GB
Biggest needs: DB, edge rusher, TE/WR

The Lions could be picking inside the top five for the first time since 2013, when they selected Ziggy Ansah, who's due to hit free agency after an injury-plagued season. Matt Patricia's going to have to find some guys who can help his pass defense, which allows a passer rating of 107.5 (second-worst in the league), and Detroit is also badly in need of a pass catcher who can be a threat in the middle of the field.

PICK

6

Giants

2

Record: 5-10 (.520)
Previous week: No. 8
This week's game: vs. DAL
Biggest needs: QB, OT, DL

With the Jaguars' win on Sunday, the Giants are back in position to have their choice of QBs in the 2019 draft -- no team ahead of them in the order currently has a big need at the position. The lingering question is whether Dave Gettleman will want to pick a QB this early. He could be perfectly content to ride with Manning one more time while bolstering his team in the trenches via the draft.

PICK

T-7

Bills

2

Record: 5-10 (.529)
Previous week: No. 9
This week's game: vs. MIA
Biggest needs: OL, WR, CB

The Dolphins could be ripe for the taking in Buffalo on Sunday, giving the Bills a chance to finish with a 4-3 record over their last seven games. That would be a nice way for this pesky squad to end the season, although a win could knock the Bills down a few rungs in the draft order. Either way, it's triple A for this club in 2019: All About Allen. Get the young man some help.

PICK

T-7

Buccaneers

3

Record: 5-10 (.529)
Previous week: No. 10
This week's game: vs. ATL
Biggest needs: DB, DE, OT

So many questions here. The Bucs could still decide to blow this thing up, which would alter the outlook for the offseason considerably, but for now, the biggest needs are on a defense that has played better in the past month.

PICK

9

Jaguars

4

Record: 5-10 (.536)
Previous week: No. 5
This week's game: at HOU
Biggest needs: QB, WR/TE, OL

The defense has bounced back from its atrocious outing against Tennessee a few weeks ago, which will inspire hope that the Jags will be right back in the race a year from now if they can just put together a respectable offense. That effort starts with replacing Blake Bortles.

PICK

10

Panthers

2

Record: 6-9 (.484)
Previous week: No. 12
This week's game: at NO
Biggest needs: OL, edge rusher, S

A team that once looked like a playoff lock is on the verge of locking down a top-10 pick after seven straight losses. What's the plan to fix it? A quick look at some of the team's unrestricted free agents in 2019: Mike Adams, Ryan Kalil (has said he plans to retire), Chris Clark, Eric Reid, Devin Funchess, Thomas Davis and Julius Peppers. This squad could be leaning on some young players to step up next season.

PICK

11

Falcons

4

Record: 6-9 (.500)
Previous week: No. 7
This week's game: at TB
Biggest needs: Edge rusher, OG, DT

The Falcons have taken to blowing teams out down the stretch of their lost season. They could tumble down the board a bit more with a winnable game in Tampa to close out 2018. At least there's this: They'll have an earlier pick than they expected to have coming into this season in a draft rich with defensive linemen.

PICK

12

Broncos

2

Record: 6-9 (.507)
Previous week: No. 14
This week's game: vs. LAC
Biggest needs: CB, WR/TE, QB

The unraveling Broncos probably won't be picking high enough to have their choice of QBs available in 2019 -- although we're still waiting on decisions from some top talents at the position -- so they might be best served trying to build the best possible roster they can around Case Keenum for one more year ... as painful as that might sound to fans of the franchise right now.

PICK

13

Bengals

Record: 6-9 (.531)
Previous week: No. 13
This week's game: at PIT
Biggest needs: LB, TE, QB

The season will mercifully come to an end for the Bengals after one last chance to play spoiler. There's intrigue around a team that has dropped eight of its last 10: Who'll be the coach, and who'll be the QB1 next year? Yes, we know Andy Dalton probably isn't going anywhere, but isn't it time to bring in someone who can challenge him? Jeff Driskel has proven to be a good backup. He's not a QB1, though.

PICK

14

Packers

3

Record: 6-8-1 (.493)
Previous week: No. 11
This week's game: vs. DET
Biggest needs: Edge rusher, S, interior OL

Nice comeback win for Green Bay as it closes out a massively disappointing season, but that pass defense had no answer for Sam Darnold. In addition to the next head coach hire, it's going to be interesting to see what happens with free-agent-to-be Clay Matthews, who needs a big game to avoid a career-low in sacks (3.5), and how the team goes about replacing Ha Ha Clinton-Dix in the secondary.

PICK

15

Dolphins

2

Record: 7-8 (.476)
Previous week: No. 17
This week's game: at BUF
Biggest needs: QB, DE, OL

Will that ugly fourth-quarter pick-six be the final straw for Ryan Tannehill? Adam Gase is wishing his QB1 had played better, and that sums up Tannehill's time in Miami pretty well. It's certainly not all on him, but it's time to find another option at the position.

PICK

16

Redskins

Record: 7-8 (.482)
Previous week: No. 16
This week's game: vs. PHI
Biggest needs: QB, WR, OL

Here's hoping for a full and speedy recovery for Alex Smith, but it's time to draft a quarterback who can one day take the reins. Don't stop there, though. The 'Skins need a WR1 to boost an offense that wasn't flying high even when Smith was healthy.

PICK

17

Browns

2

Record: 7-7-1 (.507)
Previous week: No. 15
This week's game: at BAL
Biggest needs: OT, WR, CB

While Baker Mayfield stares down his old coach, John Dorsey should be eyeing a left tackle of the future to protect his QB1, and another big target for the sensational young passer. After three straight wins, Cleveland might be picking outside the top 15 for the first time since 2011, but that's a change Browns fans will welcome.

PICK

18

Eagles

Record: 8-7 (.527)
Previous week: No. 18
This week's game: at WAS
Biggest needs: CB, OT, RB

The secondary continues to get picked on, but it hasn't stopped Philly from winning four out of five and keeping its playoff hopes alive. Still, the Eagles will have work to do on defense this offseason -- Brandon Graham, Jordan Hicks, Corey Graham, Haloti Ngata and Ronald Darby (recovering from an ACL tear) have expiring contracts. It's time to draft an offensive tackle, with Jason Peters soon to be 37, and they'll need to find Carson Wentz another back to bring better balance to the offense.

PICK

19

Steelers

6

Record: 8-6-1 (.516)
Previous week: No. 25
This week's game: vs. CIN
Biggest needs: CB, ILB, edge rusher

After four losses in five games, the Steelers need help from the Browns to make the playoffs and could be picking inside the top 20 for the first time since 2014. Oof. There could be plenty of soul searching in Pittsburgh this offseason, and the retooling should start on defense, where there's a pressing need for a CB1.

PICK

20

Titans

Record: 9-6 (.507)
Previous week: No. 20
This week's game: vs. IND
Biggest needs: WR, OLB, DL

A suffocating defense might lead the Titans into the postseason -- no D has been stingier over the past month. But they're going to need find a player, or players, who can give a little more juice to the offense to move up in the league hierarchy.

PICK

21

Vikings

Record: 8-6-1 (.484)
Previous week: No. 21
This week's game: vs. CHI
Biggest needs: OL, LB, DT

Minnesota could use a better front five -- it's the biggest need for the team right now -- but that could change quickly if some big holes develop on defense. Four-time Pro Bowler Anthony Barr and Sheldon Richardson are due to hit the market.

PICK

22

Colts

3

Record: 9-6 (.462)
Previous week: No. 19
This week's game: at TEN
Biggest needs: WR, DL, CB

Indy is a win over the Titans away from an incredible 9-1 run to the finish line and playoff appearance. The arrow is pointing straight up here. Who'd bet against Chris Ballard pulling a few more arrows from his quiver and hitting the bullseye once again on key picks/signings this offseason to morph the Colts into a goliath?

PICK

23

Raiders (via Cowboys)

1

Cowboys' record: 9-6 (.498)
Previous week: No. 24
This week's Cowboys game: at NYG
Cowboys' biggest needs: TE, DL, S

See above (No. 4) for the Raiders' needs -- they acquired this pick in the Amari Cooper trade. As for Dallas, it would be a surprise to see Jerry Jones let DeMarcus Lawrence bolt in free agency, so the main mission in the draft might be Operation Find Dak a Tight End.

PICK

24

Ravens

1

Record: 9-6 (.500)
Previous week: No. 23
This week's game: vs. CLE
Biggest needs: Edge rusher, WR, OL

The league's top defense is going to have some important pieces to negotiate with this offseason -- C.J. Mosley, Terrell Suggs, Za'Darius Smith and Brent Urban are in a contract year. On the other side of the ball, upgrades at receiver, on the offensive line, and at running back will be crucial to Lamar Jackson's development.

PICK

25

Seahawks

3

Record: 9-6 (.502)
Previous week: No. 22
This week's game: vs. ARI
Biggest needs: Edge rusher, DT, OL

Seattle is back in the playoffs on the strength of a stout defense and running game. The 'Hawks could still use another pass-rushing complement for Frank Clark (we're not seeing a scenario in which Pete Carroll and John Schneider let Clark get away in free agency this spring), and the offensive line might need some fortifying with J.R. Sweezy and D.J. Fluker set to hit the market.

PICK

26

Texans

2

Record: 10-5 (.487)
Previous week: No. 28
This week's game: vs. JAX
Biggest needs: OL, S, CB

No quarterback has been sacked more than Deshaun Watson this season (56), and no team has given up more passing yards over the past three weeks than Houston (1,076), which allowed Philly's longest play of the year on Sunday -- an 83-yard bomb to Nelson Agholor in which the Honey Badger got beat over the top. Hence, the need for better protection for the QB, and better play in the back end on D.

PICK

27

Patriots

1

Record: 10-5 (.496)
Previous week: No. 26
This week's game: vs. NYJ
Biggest needs: DL, LB, WR

A QB1 of the future? A TE1 of the future? A playmaker for the secondary? Or for the front seven? Maybe a WR1? No shortage of question marks and directions New England could go in this offseason, but the front line on defense is going to require some immediate attention. Trey Flowers, Malcom Brown and Danny Shelton have expiring deals. At receiver, Phillip Dorsett, Chris Hogan and Cordarrelle Patterson are in contract years, and Josh Gordon, facing an uncertain future, is due to become a restricted free agent.

PICK

28

Raiders (via Bears)

1

Bears' record: 11-4 (.424)
Previous week: No. 27
This week's Bears game: at MIN
Bears' biggest needs: OT, OG, DB

See above (No. 4) for the Raiders' needs -- they acquired this pick in the Khalil Mack trade. How about those Bears, though? They won again, but the run game was lackluster again. It's not all on the offensive line, but for a team as well-built as this one, run blocking is an area where there's room to improve.

PICK

29

Chargers

Record: 11-4 (.484)
Previous week: No. 29
This week's game: at DEN
Biggest needs: DT, OT, DB

Philip Rivers was pressured on a season-high 43.9 percent of his dropbacks against the Ravens. The result? His worst outing of the season, by far. The Chargers have to make sure this offseason that they're doing everything they can to keep him upright -- and some changes in the middle of the D-line are most likely in the offing, as well.

PICK

30

Chiefs

Record: 11-4 (.498)
Previous week: No. 30
This week's game: vs. OAK
Biggest needs: DB, edge rusher, RB

The Chiefs just couldn't get enough stops against Seattle. They'll be looking to patch holes in a leaky secondary this offseason, and it might be shrewd to add another young pass rusher -- it's hard to imagine they'll let Dee Ford walk in free agency, but Justin Houston will be on the wrong side of 30 next month. K.C. needs to replace Kareem Hunt, too.

PICK

31

Rams

Record: 12-3 (.498)
Previous week: No. 31
This week's game: vs. SF
Biggest needs: OLB, DB, DT

It will make sense to add some young reinforcements for the veteran O-line this offseason, but the most glaring voids figure to be on defense with Dante Fowler, Lamarcus Joyner and Ndamukong Suh due to hit the market.

PICK

32

Packers (via Saints)

Saints' record: 13-2 (.482)
Previous week: No. 32
This week's Saints game: vs. CAR
Saints' biggest needs: CB, TE, LB

See above (No. 14) for the Packers' needs. The Saints sent them this pick in their trade to move up for Marcus Davenport in the 2018 draft. In fact, New Orleans -- in win-now mode -- holds only one selection (a second-rounder) in the first four rounds of the '19 draft after also dealing picks for Teddy Bridgewater and Eli Apple. They'll be choosing late in the round whenever they're on the clock, but another pass-catching weapon for Drew Brees and more help in the secondary could come in handy for the Who Dats.

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