Update: The Texans lose to the Titans, 10-16, locking up the No. 1 pick for Houston.
The NFL regular season will soon come to an end, as the next 48 hours will see the close of Week 17. For all of the teams not currently fighting for a playoff spot or seeding thereof, there's draft order to consider.
More importantly, all of the top three picks are still up for grabs. Both the Houston Texans and Washington Redskins are in the running for the top pick. Houston is currently in possession of said pick at 2-13 on the season, but a victory in addition to a Washington loss would give the pick to the Redskins due to strength of schedule.
Schadenfreude is a word the St. Louis Rams will be very familiar with by now. They made the bold move to acquire a bevy of picks from Washington in exchange for the ability to draft Robert Griffin III in 2012, and now they are poised to receive one of the top picks in the 2014 draft, since they have the rights to the aforementioned Washington pick. That means St. Louis could easily be picking first this year.
If the Texans end up losing this week and securing the first pick, there's definitely a chance that they will go with a quarterback. A premium will be placed on quarterbacks in this upcoming draft, and as many as four passers could be taken in the top ten. Houston would likely move to wash away the bad taste in its mouth by drafting a new franchise quarterback to go along with a new head coach.
The third pick is also question mark at this point. Technically, the second pick is also up in the air for more teams. The Jacksonville Jaguars are currently slotted in at No. 3, but if the Redskins win and Jacksonville loses, the Jaguars would earn the No. 2 pick. Jacksonville holds a tiebreaker over every other four-win team in the league due to their low strength of schedule.
However, a Jacksonville win combined with losses by any of the other six four-win teams would lead to a different No. 3.
Here is the current projected 2014 draft order:
1. Houston Texans - 2-13 (.554)
2. St. Louis Rams (via Washington Redskins) - 3-12 (.521)
3. Jacksonville Jaguars - 4-11 (.504)
4. Cleveland Browns - 4-11 (.517) (3-8 conference record)
5. Oakland Raiders - 4-11 (.517) (4-7 conference record)
6. Atlanta Falcons - 4-11 (.554)
7. Tampa Bay Buccaneers - 4-11 (.579)
8. Minnesota Vikings - 4-10-1 (.521)
9. Tennessee Titans - 6-9 (.504)
10. Buffalo Bills - 6-9 (.517)
11. New York Giants - 6-9 (.529)
12. Detroit Lions - 7-8 (.458)
13. Pittsburgh Steelers - 7-8 (.471)
14. New York Jets - 7-8 (.488)
15. St. Louis Rams - 7-8 (.554)
16. Green Bay Packers - 7-7-1 (.462)
17 or 18. Baltimore Ravens - 8-7 (.487)
17 or 18. Dallas Cowboys - 8-7 (.487)
19. San Diego Chargers - 8-7 (.500)
20. Arizona Cardinals - 10-5 (.533)
21. Chicago Bears - 8-7 (.470)
22. Miami Dolphins - 8-7 (.513)
23. Philadelphia Eagles - 9-6 (.466)
24. Cincinnati Bengals - 10-5 (.479)
25. Cleveland Browns (via Indianapolis Colts) - 10-5 (.488)
26. New Orleans Saints - 10-5 (.525)
27. Kansas City Chiefs - 11-4 (.442)
28. New England Patriots - 11-4 (.471)
29. Carolina Panthers - 11-4 (.496)
30. San Francisco 49ers - 11-4 (.500)
31. Denver Broncos - 12-3 (.467)
32. Seattle Seahawks - 12-3 (.492)