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Who had the Most Accurate NFL Mock Draft in 2018?

May 1, 2018

Some analysts actually pegged Michel to New England in the 1st round

You’ve seen our NFL Rankings Accuracy Contest where over 100 experts from around the industry battle each week to prove their fantasy football advice is above the rest of the field. Well this winter, we decided to grade all of the NFL mock drafts with the same goal in mind. This is something we plan to do annually so the results will build on one another and give a clearer picture over time of which analysts truly have the best tabs on the NFL Draft. Our methodology for measuring each mock’s accuracy took four pieces of information into account:

  1. How close the analyst was in predicting where each player would be selected overall
  2. How close the analyst was in predicting where each player would be selected compared to others at their position
  3. Whether or not the analyst predicted the correct position each NFL team would select
  4. Whether or not the analyst predicted the correct team each prospect would be drafted by

Similar to the NFL rankings accuracy contest, you will find some very familiar names near the top of the leaderboard. Among them, Scott Smith (RotoViz) took home the number one spot for having the most accurate mock draft in 2018. He remarkably finished second in all four categories measured thanks to a number of surprising predictions.

Scott started it off by nailing each of the first three picks of the Draft. He also expected the Bucs to take Derwin James then, somehow, had five of the other six picks from the top 10 within one spot of where they actually landed. That may not seem like much, but compared to the rest of the field, that is a remarkable accomplishment. Moving outside the top 10, Scott wisely predicted Jaire Alexander would land with the Packers and that Arizona would find a way to get Josh Rosen. He followed those picks up by pegging Leighton Vander Esch to the Cowboys, and D.J. Moore to the Panthers among several other great calls. In total, Smith correctly listed 28 of the 32 players who were selected in the first round, tabbed the correct position for 15 teams, named the correct team for a whopping 10 players, and just missed on 11 others. What a spectacular feat. Well done, Scott, and congratulations! You can view Scott’s full mock draft here.

2018 Mock Draft Accuracy Standings

Top 10 Mocks – Overall Leaderboard*
 Rank  Expert
 1.  Scott Smith – RotoViz
 2.  Walter Cherepinsky – Walter Football
 3.  Evan Silva – Rotoworld
 4.  Ken Zalis – Pressbox
 5.  Nick Mariano – RotoBaller
 6.  Kevin Hanson – EDSFootball
 7.  Jody Smith – FantasyPros
 8.  Mike Mayock – NFL.com
 9.  Rob Rang – NFL Draft Scout
10  Brendan Donahue – EDSFootball

View entire Accuracy Leaderboard (137 mocks graded)

Right after Scott Smith, we had a duo of heavy hitters in Walter Cherpinsky (Walter Football) and Evan Silva (Rotoworld) finishing #2 and #3, respectively. Walter finished ahead of everyone in terms of accurately predicting draft slots while Silva made up his ground by hanging neck and neck with Jody Smith (FantasyPros), Ryan McCrystal (Draft Ace) and Scott Smith by slotting the correct positions selected for 15 NFL teams. Ryan McCrystal from Draft Ace (11th overall) was also the only analyst to correctly predict the landing spot for 11 draft prospects. Rob Rang (NFL Draft Scout) deserves special mention too, as he led the pack of over 130 mock drafts in terms of ranking players by position.

Four of the other most highly regarded draft analysts in the industry all landed well within the top quadrant of most accurate mock drafts. Mike Mayock (NFL.com) finished #8, Todd McShay (ESPN) ended #12 while Mel Kiper Jr (ESPN) and Daniel Jeremiah (NFL.com) tied at 157 points to finish #23 and #24. Congratulations to each of them and all of the most accurate analysts.

We’ll be back next year with more mock draft accuracy action. Until then, you can review the final results here. Congratulations again to Scott Smith and good luck to everyone next season.


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