The 2020 playoff race is heating up as we move into the late fall (or early winter if you find yourself freezing today), but the race for the No. 1 overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft is also picking up momentum. The Miami Dolphins were viewed as the favorite, but a win over the New York Jets in Week 9 dropped them all the way to fourth. Now, the Cincinnati Bengals are the team with the most to gain with losses.
Here is what the top of the draft order looks like heading into Week 10. Strength of schedule provided courtesy of Tankathon, and it is followed by their Week 10 opponent.
1. Cincinnati Bengals: 0-8 (.545) — vs. Ravens
2. Washington: 1-8 (.537) — BYE
3. New York Jets: 1-7 (.474) — vs. Giants
4. Miami Dolphins: 1-7 (.474) — @ Colts
5. Atlanta Falcons: 1-7 (.604) — @ Saints
6. New York Giants: 2-7 (.463) — @ Jets
7. Cleveland Browns: 2-6 (.500) — vs. Bills
8. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: 2-6 (.552) — vs. Cardinals
We don’t get quite the same excitement that Jets-Dolphins provided, but I suppose Giants-Jets offers at least a little something. Both teams are dealing with a host of injuries, particularly on the offensive line. Considering how bad the Bengals are, two wins might be all it takes for a team to lose their shot at the No. 1 pick.
From those eight teams, the Browns and Bucs probably have the best shot at an upset. They’re both playing at home and at times have shown the ability to surprise folks. Below them, Falcons-Saints has my interest. The Saints are two touchdown favorites, which is the biggest spread in this rivalry’s history dating back to at least 1984. But with Matt Ryan returning from injury and this game effectively serving as the Falcons Super Bowl, I don’t think they’ll get blown out. Maybe they don’t get the win, but they’ll at leasty take it to the fourth quarter.
I don’t expect much change in the top five picks, but we’ll see if Sunday brings any stunning upsets.