2020 NFL Draft: Round 1 Order, Odds and Sleeper Prospects to Monitor

Joe Tansey@JTansey90Featured ColumnistApril 10, 2020

Wisconsin linebacker Zack Baun (56) returns an interception for a touchdown against Michigan State wide receiver C.J. Hayes (4) during the second half of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Oct. 12, 2019, in Madison, Wis. Wisconsin won 38-0. (AP Photo/Andy Manis)
Andy Manis/Associated Press

The first-round picks at the 2020 NFL draft will have differing levels of buzz going into the April 23 event.

The stars projected to land in the top five have been discussed at length since before the conclusion of the college football season.

While those players are absorbed by the spotlight, a handful of sleepers are hard at work trying to secure a position in the first 32 picks. 

Wisconsin linebacker Zack Baun and TCU defensive tackle Ross Blacklock are among the sleeper prospects who could move into the back end of the first round and shine in their rookie seasons. 


2020 NFL Draft 1st-Round Order

1. Cincinnati Bengals

2. Washington Redskins

3. Detroit Lions

4. New York Giants

5. Miami Dolphins

6. Los Angeles Chargers

7. Carolina Panthers

8. Arizona Cardinals

9. Jacksonville Jaguars

10. Cleveland Browns

11. New York Jets

12. Las Vegas Raiders

13. San Francisco 49ers (from Indianapolis)

14. Tampa Bay Buccaneers

15. Denver Broncos

16. Atlanta Falcons

17. Dallas Cowboys

18. Miami Dolphins (from Pittsburgh)

19. Las Vegas Raiders (from Chicago)

20. Jacksonville Jaguars (from Los Angeles Rams)

21. Philadelphia Eagles

22. Minnesota Vikings (from Buffalo)

23. New England Patriots

24. New Orleans Saints

25. Minnesota Vikings 

26. Miami Dolphins (from Houston)

27. Seattle Seahawks

28. Baltimore Ravens

29. Tennessee Titans

30. Green Bay Packers

31. San Francisco 49ers

32. Kansas City Chiefs


NFL Draft Odds

Team To Draft Tua Tagovailoa

Miami (-150; bet $150 to win $100)

Los Angeles Chargers (+250; bet $100 to win $250)

Washington (+325)

Detroit (+400)


Quarterbacks Drafted in 1st Round

Over/Under: 4.0


Alabama Players Drafted in 1st Round

Over/Under: 5.5

More odds can be found here at Caesars Palace


Sleeper Prospects to Monitor

Zack Baun, LB, Wisconsin

MINNEAPOLIS, MINNESOTA - NOVEMBER 30: Zack Baun #56 of the Wisconsin Badgers tackles Shannon Brooks #4 of the Minnesota Golden Gophers during the second quarter of the game at TCF Bank Stadium on November 30, 2019 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Photo by Hann
Hannah Foslien/Getty Images

The main draft attraction coming out of Wisconsin is running back Jonathan Taylor, but there is a chance he will not be the first Badgers player taken in late April.

Baun could own that title, as he would be a solid addition in the middle of defense for one of the teams selecting at the bottom of the first round.

Baun recorded 76 tackles and 12.5 sacks in his senior season for a Badgers defense that pushed the team into the Big Ten Championship Game and Rose Bowl. 

Taylor will generate buzz because of his back-to-back 2,000-yard seasons, but teams could be hesitant to take a running back because of the volatility at the position.

Baun is expected to land in the late first round or early second round. Bleacher Report's Matt Miller had him as the first pick of the second round, while NFL.com's Daniel Jeremiah projected him to be the No. 28 pick.

Baun's athleticism in the open field should lead a few contenders to him, but he may be pushed back in the draft order if a run on wide receivers occurs. 

If he lands with the Ravens, he would bolster their depth behind Matthew Judon at the position. 

The Seattle Seahawks could be a good fit for Baun, as he would get the opportunity to learn under K.J. Wright and Bobby Wagner, while the Tennessee Titans could add him to their young stable of linebackers that includes 2018 draft picks Rashaan Evans and Harold Landry.


Ross Blacklock, DT, TCU

SAN ANTONIO, TX - DECEMBER 28: Bryce Love #20 of the Stanford Cardinal runs out of the grasp by Ross Blacklock #90 of the TCU Horned Frogs in the second half of the Valero Alamo Bowl at Alamodome on December 28, 2017 in San Antonio, Texas. (Photo by Tim W
Tim Warner/Getty Images

TCU has not pumped out high-end draft prospects on a consistent basis, but this year it has two potential first-round picks on defense.

Defensive back Jeff Gladney is receiving a decent amount of buzz as one of the top corners in the draft class, while defensive tackle Ross Blacklock is viewed as a fringe first-round selection.

ESPN.com's Todd McShay had Blacklock landing at No. 28, while Jeremiah positioned him at No. 31. 

However, Miller rated Blacklock as a late second-pick at No. 51 in his April 1 projection.

Blacklock produced 40 tackles and 3.5 sacks while clogging up the middle in his junior season.

His power on the interior could be intriguing to the Ravens and 49ers among others at the back end of the first round. 

San Francisco is not in dire straits at defensive line, but it needs to replace DeForest Buckner, and its biggest need at wide receiver should be filled at No. 13—the pick it received from Indianapolis for Buckner.

If Green Bay opts to go defensive at No. 30, it could call on Blacklock to plug up the middle in front of a strong collection of linebackers. 

If Blacklock is chosen in the first round, he would be the third TCU defensive lineman chosen in the first round since 2010. Jerry Hughes and L.J. Collier are the others.

In the best-case scenario for TCU in which Blacklock and Gladney are chosen, they would be the first Horned Frogs teammates to land in the first round since 1939.


Follow Joe on Twitter, @JTansey90

Statistics obtained from ESPN.com