The NFL Draft is a multi-day extravaganza with the top college football players discovering where they will begin their professional careers. Gone are the days of teams having to make decisions across 30 rounds, but how many rounds are there, and what are the significant NFL Draft rules you should know?
How many rounds are in the NFL Draft?
The NFL Draft consists of seven rounds. The first round will take place on Thursday, April 28. Rounds 2 and 3 will occur on Friday, April 29. Finally, rounds four through seven of the draft will transpire on Saturday, April 30.
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell will announce every pick of the first round live on stage in Las Vegas. A combination of NFL executives, former players, and other special guests will announce the subsequent rounds, although not all will be televised.
How many picks are in each round of the NFL Draft?
The 2022 NFL Draft order has yet to be finalized. As always, the team with the worst record over the previous season will receive the No. 1 overall pick, while the Super Bowl champion will make the 32nd selection. This year, the Jacksonville Jaguars draft first overall for the second-consecutive year, while the 32nd and final selection in the first round will be finalized following Super Bowl 56.
Each team is initially given one draft selection in each round. However, many end up changing hands by way of trades. The league then awards compensatory picks, meaning that most rounds exceed 32 picks.
- Round 1: 32 picks
- Round 2: 32 picks
- Round 3: 41 picks
- Round 4: 39 picks
- Round 5: 40 picks
- Round 6: 44 picks
- Round 7: 31 picks
Ultimately, assuming that no NFL Draft rules are broken, there are 259 total picks in each NFL Draft.
How long does each team have to pick?
Each team’s amount of time “on the clock” reduces as the draft proceeds. In the first round, each franchise receives ten minutes to make their selection. Each team then has seven minutes to make a pick in Round 2. In Rounds 3, 4, 5, and 6, the time is decreased again, with teams having five minutes. In the final round, they hold just four minutes.
NFL Draft rules are clear. If a team doesn’t make their pick or trade it before the clock expires, the next team in the order is officially on the clock. While they can still make their selection, it becomes a race to make the pick. If both teams want the same player, then whoever locks and sends their card up first owns the rights to said player.