NFL Draft Pick Value Calculator

  • Enter the values for Pick 1 and Pick 2.
  • Click "Calculate" to calculate the gain/loss and percent change between the picks.
  • Your calculation results will be displayed in the "Result" field below.
  • To see your calculation history, scroll down to the "Calculation History" section.
  • Click "Clear" to reset the input fields and result.
  • Click "Copy" to copy the result to the clipboard.
Calculation History

    The NFL Draft Pick Value Calculator is an innovative tool used by NFL teams to evaluate and optimize their selections during the NFL Draft. The draft is a pivotal event in the NFL, offering teams the opportunity to strengthen their rosters by selecting the most promising college football players. However, with a limited number of picks and a vast pool of talent, teams must strategize effectively to make the most of their selections. The Draft Pick Value Calculator plays a crucial role in this strategic process.

    Concept and Origin

    The concept of assigning value to draft picks originated with the Dallas Cowboys in the 1990s. Jimmy Johnson, the then-coach of the Cowboys, along with Mike McCoy, an analyst, developed a chart to assign a numerical value to each pick in the draft. This chart, known as the “Jimmy Johnson chart,” became a fundamental tool for NFL teams. It helped in assessing the worth of draft picks and facilitated trade negotiations among teams.

    Functionality and Application

    The Draft Pick Value Calculator is essentially a more refined and technologically advanced version of the original chart. It allows teams to input the number of a draft pick and receive a numerical value representing that pick’s worth. This value is not arbitrary; it is based on historical data, success rates, and a variety of other factors that contribute to a player’s potential impact on a team. Teams use this tool to evaluate whether a trade is beneficial or to decide between keeping a pick and trading it for multiple lower picks.

    The Formulae Behind the Calculator

    While the exact formulae used in modern calculators may vary and are proprietary, they all stem from the foundational concept introduced by the Jimmy Johnson chart. The chart uses an exponential decay model, meaning that the value of picks decreases dramatically as the draft progresses.

    Basic Structure of the Formula

    The general structure of the formula can be described as follows:

    Value = A * (B ^ (Pick Number))

    In this formula:

    • Value represents the numerical value assigned to the pick.
    • A and B are constants determined through historical analysis and valuation of picks.
    • Pick Number is the position of the pick in the draft.
    • ^ denotes exponentiation.

    The constants A and B are calibrated based on historical data, including the success rate of players selected in each draft position, their average career length, and other performance indicators.

    Benefits of the NFL Draft Pick Value Calculator

    Strategic Advantage

    The primary benefit of using the NFL Draft Pick Value Calculator is the strategic advantage it provides teams. By quantifying the value of draft picks, teams can make more informed decisions, whether they’re selecting a player or trading picks.

    Facilitating Trades

    The calculator standardizes the value of draft picks, making it easier for teams to negotiate trades. It provides a common language and a starting point for discussions, reducing the ambiguity in the valuation of picks.

    Historical Data Analysis

    The calculator incorporates a wealth of historical data, offering teams insights into the success rates of players picked at various positions. This data-driven approach enhances the decision-making process and helps teams avoid costly mistakes.

    Interesting Facts

    Evolution and Variations

    While the Jimmy Johnson chart was revolutionary, it’s worth noting that the NFL Draft Pick Value Calculator has evolved significantly. Different teams and analysts have developed their own variations of the calculator, incorporating more recent data and advanced statistical techniques.

    Impact on Draft Strategy

    The calculator has fundamentally changed how teams approach the draft. It has led to more strategic trading, with teams moving up or down in the draft to maximize the value they get from their picks.

    Criticisms and Limitations

    Despite its widespread use, the calculator is not without its critics. Some argue that the model is too rigid and doesn’t account for the unique talents of individual players or the specific needs of a team. Others point out that the success of a player is influenced by many factors beyond their draft position, such as coaching, team culture, and personal development.


    The NFL Draft Pick Value Calculator is a testament to the complex and strategic nature of professional football. It encapsulates the endeavor of NFL teams to quantify talent and potential, transforming the draft process into a more calculated and data-driven event. While it’s not the sole tool in a team’s arsenal, its impact on the NFL Draft is undeniable. As the sport continues to evolve, so too will the methodologies and technologies used to assess and value player potential, ensuring that the NFL Draft remains a dynamic and strategic spectacle.


    For further reading and a deeper understanding of the NFL Draft Pick Value Calculator, consider exploring the following scholarly articles and resources:

    1. “Rethinking the NFL Draft Value Chart: A Value-Based Model for Drafting Quarterbacks” by Cade Massey and Richard H. Thaler. This article provides insights into the valuation of draft picks, specifically focusing on the most pivotal position in football – the quarterback.
    2. “The Loser’s Curse: Decision Making and Market Efficiency in the National Football League Draft” by Cade Massey and Richard H. Thaler. This paper critically examines the efficiency of the draft process and the decision-making strategies employed by NFL teams.
    3. “Predicting the NFL using Twitter” by Tim Althoff, Pranav Jindal, and Jure Leskovec. While not directly about the Draft Pick Value Calculator, this paper explores the use of social media and big data in predicting NFL performance, highlighting the intersection of sports, data, and technology.

    Last Updated : 18 January, 2024

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