Ranking the best NFL draft picks of all time: Top five at each spot, 1-32, ahead of 2021 NFL Draft – CBS Sports

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Mike Meredith / CBS Sports

The 2021 NFL Draft is right around the corner, and its arrival will bring a flurry of new drama across the league. Will Trevor Lawrence finally go No. 1, giving the Jaguars long-awaited hope under center? Which of the many quarterback-needy teams picking in and around the top 10 will actually come away with a new signal-caller? Each and every draft-day decision will be made with hope for the future, in part because of the success of the past. Not every rookie pans out; teams know this all too well. But every single pick throughout the first round, from No. 1 to No. 32, has unearthed gems over the years.

Here at CBS Sports, we’ve got you covered with everything you need to prep for the 2021 draft. Whether it’s countless mock drafts (including Chris Trapasso’s seven-rounder!), updated prospect rankings, or buzz around which teams are eyeing which potential first-rounders, you shouldn’t be hurting for things to read. In the spirit of the upcoming rookie class, however, we decided to page through history and identify the best of the best to come from the draft. You know, to keep you especially hopeful about your favorite team’s chances this coming April.

Below, you’ll find our running log of the top five all-time picks at every first-round slot, as we work our way each day from No. 32 all the way to No. 1, which we’ll unveil the week of the draft:

Note: Some picks that were not originally first-rounders are included, as the NFL has expanded since the draft began in 1936. For example, the 32nd overall pick was considered a second-rounder until 2002.

No. 32

Top five of all time

No. 1: Drew Brees
No. 2:
Bob “The Geek” St. Clair
No. 3:
Logan Mankins
No. 4:
Lamar Jackson
No. 5:
Benjamin Watson

Check out Tyler Sullivan’s full story here.

No. 31

Top five of all-time: Watch for our story coming March 28.

No. 30

Top five of all-time: Watch for our story coming March 29.

No. 29

Top five of all-time: Watch for our story coming March 30.

No. 28

Top five of all-time: Watch for our story coming March 31.

No. 27

Top five of all-time: Watch for our story coming April 1.

No. 26

Top five of all-time: Watch for our story coming April 2.

No. 25

Top five of all-time: Watch for our story coming April 3.

No. 24

Top five of all-time: Watch for our story coming April 4.

No. 23

Top five of all-time: Watch for our story coming April 5.

No. 22

Top five of all-time: Watch for our story coming April 6.

No. 21

Top five of all-time: Watch for our story coming April 7.

No. 20

Top five of all-time: Watch for our story coming April 8.

No. 19

Top five of all-time: Watch for our story coming April 9.

No. 18

Top five of all-time: Watch for our story coming April 10.

No. 17

Top five of all-time: Watch for our story coming April 11.

No. 16

Top five of all-time: Watch for our story coming April 12.

No. 15

Top five of all-time: Watch for our story coming April 13.

No. 14

Top five of all-time: Watch for our story coming April 14.

No. 13

Top five of all-time: Watch for our story coming April 15.

No. 12

Top five of all-time: Watch for our story coming April 16.

No. 11

Top five of all-time: Watch for our story coming April 17.

No. 10

Top five of all-time: Watch for our story coming April 18.

No. 9

Top five of all-time: Watch for our story coming April 19.

No. 8

Top five of all-time: Watch for our story coming April 20.

No. 7

Top five of all-time: Watch for our story coming April 21.

No. 6

Top five of all-time: Watch for our story coming April 22.

No. 5

Top five of all-time: Watch for our story coming April 23.

No. 4

Top five of all-time: Watch for our story coming April 24.

No. 3

Top five of all-time: Watch for our story coming April 25.

No. 2

Top five of all-time: Watch for our story coming April 26.

No. 1

Top five of all-time: Watch for our story coming April 27.

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