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This Element is an excerpt from Stumbling On Wins: Two Economists Expose the Pitfalls on the Road to Victory in Professional Sports (9780132357784) by David J. Berri and Martin B. Schmidt. Available in print and digital formats.
Why NFL teams' conventional approach to the draft just doesn't work-and what they should be doing instead.
If the NFL draft worked according to conventional wisdom, the greatest surplus value would be found at the top of the draft. However, the data suggests that picks in the top half of the second round have the greatest surplus value. This means teams in the first round, especially at the top, should be making every effort to trade down. They've traditionally done the opposite....
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