The NFL draft season is upon us, and fans across the league want to know which prospects will make their respective teams better in 2014.
The honest answer: no one knows yet.
Think about it; you're going to hear a ton of opinions between now and May. Those opinions will be varied and will often change over time. That's OK! This is how this process works. It even works like that within the confines of an NFL scouting department, where player rankings will be hashed out and dissected right up until the morning of the draft.
The one thing I can tell you with certainty is that this is not an iron-clad list of the best players in the 2014 NFL draft class. No, what it is is a list, made in early February, of the players I believe could be the best players in the 2014 draft. Like other draft prognosticators, I can only do my best as I continually absorb footage, make notes, talk to league sources and formulate my opinions.
We're past the college football season and the all-star games (Senior Bowl and East-West Shrine Game), so most of the important stuff is behind us. The NFL scouting combine can change some opinions and shake up some rankings, as can pro-day workouts and team visits.
During that second half of the process, feel free to refer to this list, these rankings and these player capsules—not as definitive immutable proof, but rather as a guide to focus your attention. Come draft day, some of these rankings will almost certainly be changed, and we can laugh at them together. That's part of the fun of the process—learning from your mistakes and getting better because of it.
Dislike my rankings or feel I left out your favorite player? Leave your rankings in the comments below.