On Thursday, April 23, we are going to see several teams trade down in the first round of the 2020 NFL Draft and these are the most likely candidates.
Last week, I examined five teams most likely to trade up in Round 1 of the 2020 NFL Draft. These teams were looking to consolidate their draft capital to grab a high impact player or possibly the face of their franchise. Well, paraphrasing Isaac Newton, “what goes up, must come down.”
Teams will drop down in the pecking order for several reasons. The most likely motive is to restock their barren draft capital; teams with few picks in the draft realize they cannot survive from a cap standpoint by only paying veterans, so they move down in order to get some rookies on the payroll.
Another reason is they feel their current pick is worth more than the player they would select. For example, teams at the top of the draft that already have a quarterback will be inclined to move off of their pick, because taking a skill position player where a quarterback should be drafted does not make sense from a value perspective. They are better off moving down the board and cashing in on their high-priced pick.
Lastly, teams will trade down because they feel they can get their desired prospect later in the draft. If a team likes multiple players left on the board, selecting a prospect at their predetermined pick doesn’t outweigh the benefits of dropping down a few slots, accumulating more capital, and grabbing a guy that was ranked similarly to whom they could’ve taken.
Last year, we saw six trade-downs on Day 1. Three teams traded down in the first round, while three others traded out of the first round entirely. This draft is primed for multiple transactions to occur on draft day, so let’s take a look at five teams I believe are the most likely to trade down in the 2020 NFL Draft.