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2023 NFL Draft order update: Lions pick stays in top 5 after another Rams loss

The Detroit Lions benefit from another poor effort from the Los Angeles Rams, and a top-five pick continues to look quite possible.

NFL: Los Angeles Rams at Green Bay Packers Wm. Glasheen-USA TODAY Sports

Well, 72 percent of you got what you wanted on “Monday Night Football,” as the Green Bay Packers easily handled the lowly Los Angeles Rams. The loss dropped the Rams to 4-10 on the season, tied for the third-worst record in the NFL.

The reason many of you were hoping for that outcome is obviously because the Detroit Lions own the Rams’ first-round pick. With the loss, the Rams’ pick remains in the top five and is within striking distance of potentially the second overall pick.

The Lions, meanwhile, continue to see their own pick plummet down the draft order. But considering Detroit’s playoff odds have moved from infinitesimal to now realistic, I’m sure no one in Detroit really minds.

Let’s take a look at the current draft order after 15 weeks in the NFL.

Reminder: Strength of schedule is the primary tiebreaker in draft order. Strength of schedule numbers are taken from Tankathon and represent the full 17-game schedule for teams—not just the games played.

  1. Texans: 1-12-1 (.504)
  2. Bears: 3-11 (.574)
  3. Broncos (owned by Seahawks): 4-10 (.483)
  4. Rams (owned by Lions): 4-10 (.500)
  5. Cardinals: 4-10 (.517)
  6. Colts: 4-9-1 (.508)
  7. Falcons: 5-9 (.447)
  8. Panthers: 5-9 (.452)
  9. Saints (owned by Eagles): 5-9 (.496)
  10. Raiders: 6-8 (.454)
  11. Jaguars: 6-8 (.492)
  12. Browns (owned by Texans): 6-8 (.508)
  13. Steelers: 6-8 (.536)
  14. Packers: 6-8 (.550)
  15. Seahawks: 7-7 (.456)
  16. Patriots: 7-7 (.523)
  17. Jets: 7-7 (.534)
  18. Lions: 7-7 (.546)

The Lions’ original pick is actually the lowest among non-playoff teams. That’s because they’re tied for the best record of non-playoff teams and they’ve accomplished that with the toughest schedule of the 7-7- teams.

As for the Rams pick, they’ve gained ground on the Broncos after Denver’s win over the Cardinals. Can they hold that spot? Let’s look at their final three games:

  • vs. Broncos (4-10)
  • at Chargers (8-6)
  • at Seahawks (7-7)

Next week’s game against the Broncos (4:30 p.m. ET on Sunday) will be a huge one for the Lions’ draft order. If the Rams lose that game, their pick will enter the top three, and could potentially even jump into the top two. If they win, that pick could drop as low as nine.

That will be dependent on what the Chicago Bears do the rest of the way. Let’s look at the Bears’ schedule:

  • vs. Bills (11-3)
  • at Lions (7-7)
  • vs. Vikings (11-3)

Yeah.... so their most winnable game is a game we definitely don’t want them to win. So maybe we should just be content with a top-three pick, or hope that the Vikings are resting some starters in Week 18 and the Bears pick up a meaningless win to close out the season.

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