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2017 NFL Draft Order: Patriots have just 4 possible locations in the first round

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The wild card is over and we know the first 24 draft picks.

The Wild Card round of the 2016 NFL Playoffs is now complete and we can add four more teams to the 2017 NFL Draft order. Picks 1-20 are given to teams that did not make the playoffs in reverse order of 2016 regular season record; tiebreakers go to the team with the easier strength of schedule.

With 4 teams eliminated over Wild Card Weekend, we now know the order of the first 24 draft picks in the opening round. More analysis after the list.

  1. Cleveland Browns (1-15); 0.549 SoS
  2. San Francisco 49ers (2-14); 0.504
  3. Chicago Bears (3-13); 0.522
  4. Jacksonville Jaguars (3-13); 0.528
  5. Tennessee Titans vis Los Angeles Rams (4-12); 0.506
  6. New York Jets (5-11); 0.518
  7. San Diego Chargers (5-11); 0.543
  8. Carolina Panthers (6-10); 0.518
  9. Cincinnati Bengals (6-9-1); 0.521
  10. Buffalo Bills (7-9); 0.482
  11. New Orleans Saints (7-9); 0.525
  12. Cleveland Browns via Philadelphia Eagles (7-9); 0.559
  13. Arizona Cardinals (7-8-1); 0.463
  14. (or 15.)^ Indianapolis Colts (8-8); 0.492
  15. (or 14.)^ Philadelphia Eagles via Minnesota Vikings (8-8); 0.492
  16. Baltimore Ravens (8-8); 0.498
  17. Washington (8-7-1); 0.516
  18. Tennessee Titans (9-7); 0.465
  19. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (9-7); 0.492
  20. Denver Broncos (9-7); 0.549
  21. Detroit Lions (9-7); 0.464
  22. Miami Dolphins (10-6); 0.420
  23. New York Giants (11-5); 0.489
  24. Oakland Raiders (12-4); 0.502

^The Colts and Vikings order will be determined by a coin flip at the 2017 NFL Combine.

The Jets and the Bills are both picking in the top 10; the Browns have two picks in the top 12; and the Titans own picks #5 and #18. The Lions would have picked 18th overall if they had not made the playoffs since they owned the weakest strength of schedule for all 9-7 teams.

Picks 25-28 will go to teams elimination in the Divisional Round in order of worst-to-best regular season record. If the (14-2) New England Patriots are upset and eliminated, they would pick 28th by virtue of owning the best record in the playoffs- and would therefore have the best record of any team eliminated.

In fact, we can deduce that the Patriots pick will either be 28th (eliminated in Divisional Round), 30th (eliminated in Conference Championship), 31st (eliminated in Super Bowl), or 32nd (Super Bowl Champions).

The (9-7) Houston Texans will have the first pick of teams eliminated in whichever round they are vanquished. The remaining order of active playoff teams are the (10-6) Green Bay Packers; (10-5-1) Seattle Seahawks; (11-5; 0.480 SoS) Atlanta Falcons; (11-5; 0.522 SoS) Pittsburgh Steelers; (12-4) Kansas City Chiefs; (13-3) Dallas Cowboys; and then the (14-2) New England Patriots.