NFL Draft Winners & Losers | NFC North
Chief Sports Writer
In the latest of our analysis of the NFL Draft. We look at who's in and who's out across the NFC North Division teams. Plus, we compare the DraftKings' odds swing between pre-draft and current Super Bowl odds to decide are the winners and losers of the NFL Draft.
Division Odds: +160
Pre-Draft Super Bowl 55 odds: +2800
Current Super Bowl 55 odds: +2500
|Key Re-signings||Arik Armstead, DT; Jimmie Ward, S; Jason Verrett, CB; Dontae Johnson, CB|
|Key Restricted Free Agent Tender||Eric Wilson, LB|
|Key Trade Departure||Stefon Diggs, WR|
|Key Free Agent losses||Stephen Weatherly, DE; Trae Waynes, CB; Linval Joseph, DT; Jayron Kearse, S; Andrew Sendejo, S; Laquon Treadwell, WR; Mackensie Alexander, CB; Xavier Rhodes, CB|
|Key Free Agent signings||Michael Pierce, DT; Tajae Sharpe, WR; Anthony Zettel, DE|
|Key Draft Pick||Justin Jefferson, WR (1st round); Jeff Gladney, CB (1st round); Ezra Cleveland, OT (2nd round)|
|Franchise Tag||Anthony Harris, S|
The Vikings had a big first-round win on the road against the Saints to open the postseason. However, that good feeling was wiped away immediately by the eventual NFC-champion 49ers. It was still a big moment for Minnesota and QB Kirk Cousins, in particular. Now, he’ll look to get it done without WR Stefon Diggs who departed for Buffalo.
While the Vikings did lose some key pieces, the draft was a smashing success for them. WR Justin Jefferson fell to Minnesota at No. 22 while also grabbing CB Jeff Gladney late in the first round and Ezra Cleveland in the second.
The Vikings lost way too many key pieces on defense to win the NFC North this season. It wouldn’t be a surprise at all to see them fall just short of the playoffs.
Green Bay Packers
Division Odds: +175
Pre-Draft Super Bowl 55 odds: +2200
Current Super Bowl 55 odds: +2800
|Key Re-signings||Marcedes Lewis, TE|
|Key Free Agent Losses||Blake Martinez, LB; Jimmy Graham, TE; Bryan Bulaga, OT; Kyle Fackrell, LB; B.J. Goodson, LB; Geronimo Allison, WR|
|Key Free Agent Signings||Christian Kirksey, LB; Ricky Wagner, OT; Devin Funchess, WR|
|Key Draft Picks||Jordan Love, QB (1st round); AJ Dillon, RB (2nd round)|
Once again, the Packers failed to get QB Aaron Rodgers any offensive skill players in the first round of the draft. Instead, they traded up a few picks to get the eventual replacement to Rodgers – Jordan Love. This season can go one of two ways – 1) Rodgers holds a massive grudge and lets it affect his play, or 2) Rodgers gets super motivated and leads Green Bay to the Super Bowl. The latter of those two nearly happened last season, so perhaps this team can take the next step.
The Packers didn’t make any groundbreaking moves in the offseason, so it’ll be interesting to see what improvements they make within their own locker room. RB Aaron Jones had a breakout campaign in 2019 and odds are that he’ll be counted on a lot more than usual.
Division Odds: +400
Pre-Draft Super Bowl 55 odds: +3300
Current Super Bowl 55 odds: +5000
|Key Re-signings||Danny Trevathan, LB; Deon Bush, S; DeAndre Houston-Carson, LB; Brent Urban, DE; Isaiah Irving, LB; Tyler Bray, QB|
|Key Trade Acquisition||Nick Foles, QB|
|Key Trade Departure||Brandin Cooks|
|Free Agent Signings||Robert Quinn, DE; Jimmy Graham, TE; Jordan Lucas, S; Demetrius Harris, TE; Artie Burns, CB; Barkevious Mingo, LB; German Ifedi, RT|
|Key Free Agent Losses||Nick Kwiatkoski, LB; Chase Daniel, QB; Nick Williams, DT; Kevin Pierre-Louis, LB; Leonard Floyd, LB; Cornelius Lucas, OT; HaHa Clinton-Dix, S; Trey Burton, TE|
|Key Draft Picks||Cole Kmet, TE (2nd round)|
Last season became the time it was evident that Mitchell Trubisky would no longer be the QB of the Bears’ future. Chicago did trade for Nick Foles this season, making him the presumed starter after the team failed to pick up the 2021 option on Trubisky.
This team still has one of the most hard-hitting defenses in football, so that unit will need to be more spectacular than ever. Khalil Mack is one of the best defensive players in the game and it’ll be fascinating to see what he’s got up his sleeve this season. Ultimately, though, it won’t be enough to get the Bears into the playoffs.
Division Odds: +550
Pre-Draft Super Bowl 55 odds: +6600
Current Super Bowl 55 odds: +6000
|Key Re-signings||Miles Killebrew, S; Oday Aboushi, OT|
|Key Trade Departure||Darius Slay, CB|
|Free Agent Signings||Nick Williams, DT; Chase Daniel, QB; Jamie Collins, LB; Halapoulivaati Vaitai, OG; Danny Shelton, DT; Ted Karras, C; Desmond Trufant, CB; Jayron Kearse, S; Reggie Ragland, LB; Elijah Lee, LB; Geremy Davis, WR; Geronimo Allison, WR; Daryl Roberts, CB|
|Key Free Agent Losses||Ricky Wagner, OT; Graham Glasgow, OG; Devon Kennard, LB; J.D. McKissic, RB; Logan Thomas, TE; A’Shawn Robinson, DT; Rashaan Melvin, CB|
|Key Draft Picks||Jeff Okudah, CB (1st round); D’Andre Swift, RB (2nd round)|
It’s very intriguing to see the Lions with +550 odds to win the NFC North. After all, they had the third-worst record in football last season and a very tough division to play in. QB Matt Stafford may be on his last chance to prove that he is indeed the best option for Detroit at this position.
The former No. 1 overall pick has posted big stats in his time here, but those numbers haven’t necessarily translated into big wins.
The Lions did get a fantastic player for the future in CB Jeff Okudah with the No. 3 overall pick. Losing Darius Slay was tough for the franchise but his skills were diminishing and Okudah is just flat out better in every sense of the word. Getting RB D’Andre Swift out of Georgia in the second round was also a nice pickup to pair with starter Kerryon Johnson.
We’re not sure if any of these things will translate to more wins for the Lions, so spending money on them to win the division isn’t a great investment.