FanPost

Number 1 Pick? Unlikely

Thanks to the excessively awful play of RGIII and the Deadskins, Rams fans are pretty well guaranteed a top 5 pick in next year's draft. But there has been a lot of talk about getting the #1. Looking at the schedule right now, I think that's unlikely. Here's why:

Right now, there are 4 teams with records worse than Washington's (3-8): JAX, HOU and ATL are 2-9 and MIN is 2-8-1. So, let's look at each team's schedule and count winnable games. But first, let's start with some good news: the tiebreaker. Looking at the current strength of schedule, of the teams we're looking at, only the Texans have a lower SOS than the Redskins. But given how tough Houston's remaining games are, it's likely that Washington will have the lowest SOS of all these teams and will win any tiebreaker. Therefore, we need to get all four of these teams to at least the same number of wins as Washington.

So, let's start with Washington. Their schedule is NYG, KC, @ATL, DAL, @NYG. Their best shot at a win is against Atlanta. Depending on which Giants team shows up, maybe they split that series, but I think a reasonable ceiling for the Redskins is 4 wins. In fact, if Washington wins again, we have no shot. There's no way a 4-win team gets the first pick.

Jacksonville's remaining schedule is @CLE, HOU, BUF, TEN, @IND. The first thing you should notice is that we have a "clash" between two 2-9 teams. Someone will win that game and get that crucial third win. For reason explained below, we need to hope it's Houston. This schedule isn't bad for us. The Jaguars have already beaten Tennessee on the road, and they still have the Browns and Buffalo. Of those 4 winnable games, they could win 2 and end with 4 wins. We should pick before them.

Atlanta's schedule is @BUF, @GB, WAS, @SF, CAR. Since Aaron Rodgers will be back in time for that game, the only winnable games are the Redskins and the Bills. Obviously, the Washington game is crucial: if the 'Skins wins, there's no realistic way we pick before the Falcons. As bad as Buffalo is, the Falcons are worse and playing on the road. I think the Falcons are looking at a 3 win season, at best.

With Houston, we have a problem. Their remaining schedule is tough: NE, @JAX, @IND, DEN, @TEN. Other than Jacksonville, I don't see another win here. Tennessee is their best chance, but I wouldn't bet on it. As bad as they are playing, three wins will be tough if they lose to the Jags.

Finally, let's look at the Vikings, who are an even bigger problem. Their schedule is brutal: CHI, @BAL, PHI, @CIN, DET. Every one of those teams is better than Minnesota. Unless Detroit's got the NFC North locked up, the Vikings won't even get the chance for a Week 17 game against the Lion's backups. I guess they could beat the Bears or the Ravens, but I really can't see a win here.

Summing up this analysis, I see at least one 2-win team (MIN) and two other plausible ones (HOU and ATL). Chances are pretty good that at least one of them will lose out the season and get the top pick. My prediction: we get the third pick in the draft.

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