Breakdowns

Breaking Down the NFL First-Round Picks By Their High School Rankings

The NBA and NFL are unique in the fact that they rank high school athletes in terms of “star” rankings (5 star, 4 star, 3 star, 2 star or unranked prospects). When looking at whether these prospects are able to continue their prep success and get drafted in the first round of their respective drafts, the two leagues separate.

In 2019, there were more 5-star basketball players taken in the first round of the draft then those that were taken in any NFL Draft between 2015-20 (11 5-star players were taken out of 27 eligible picks in the first round of the NBA draft). Only eight prospects in the 2019 NBA Draft were below a 4-star ranking. The NFL has had more than that in each of the last six years. Here is a breakdown of the high school rankings for first-round NFL picks over the last six years:

Overall, in the last seven years of the NFL draft, there were 52 five-star prospects drafted (23.32%), 80 four-star prospects (35.87%), 72 three-star prospects (32.28%), 11 two-star prospects (4.93%) and 8 unranked prospects (3.58%). Here are the totals year-by-year:

 

2015:

9 five-star prospects

6 four-star prospects

16 three-star prospects

1 two-star prospect

unranked prospects

 

2016:

5 five-star prospects

17 four-star prospects

4 three-star prospects

3 two-star prospect

2 unranked prospects

 

2017:

10 five-star prospects

12 four-star prospects

6 three-star prospects

2 two-star prospect

2 unranked prospects

 

2018:

7 five-star prospects

11 four-star prospects

10 three-star prospects

1 two-star prospect

3 unranked prospects

 

2019:

8 five-star prospects

9 four-star prospects

12 three-star prospects

2 two-star prospect

1 unranked prospects

 

2020:

6 five-star prospects

15 four-star prospects

10 three-star prospects

1 two-star prospect

No unranked prospects

 

2021:

7 five-star prospect

10 four-star prospect

14 three-star prospect

1 two-star prospect

No 1-star or unranked

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