Top 2024 NFL Draft Round 1 Steals: J.J. McCarthy Slides to Vikings, Lions Land Top Corner Terrion Arnold

    With the first 32 picks in the books, let's take a look at which players were the biggest steals from Round 1 of the 2024 NFL Draft.

    Well, we made it. Round 1 of the 2024 NFL Draft is in the books.

    Thursday night didn’t produce many trade fireworks — there were a few noteworthy deals — but it made up for it with a historic run on quarterbacks and some stunning selections. There’s a lot to break down.

    We’ll get to all of it in the coming days. For now, let’s look at five of the biggest steals from the first round.

    Biggest Steals from Round 1 of the 2024 NFL Draft

    QB J.J. McCarthy: No. 10, Minnesota Vikings

    On talent alone, J.J. McCarthy isn’t a steal at this spot. He was the No. 26 prospect on the Pro Football Network big board, and he was lower on other lists. In fact, you could argue this is a reach.

    However, there was a world in which the Minnesota Vikings had to part with both of their first-rounders (Nos. 11 and 23) to move up for McCarthy, whom they clearly coveted. Instead, Minnesota only swapped No. 11 and a pair of late-round picks with the New York Jets to move up to No. 10.

    Many mock drafts had McCarthy going in the top five. Instead, he made it all the way to No. 10 to the team that wanted him all along.

    Ultimately, this is a win for Minnesota.

    TE Brock Bowers: No. 13, Las Vegas Raiders

    Some teams had Brock Bowers as their highest-graded prospect. He’s that good of a tight end prospect.

    In other years, Bowers would’ve been a top-10 pick, maybe even a top-five selection. But due to the needs of the teams in the top 12, Bowers slipped to the Las Vegas Raiders, who’ll add him to an offense that already features Davante Adams and Jakobi Meyers.

    This is a huge steal for Las Vegas.

    EDGE Dallas Turner: No. 17, Minnesota Vikings

    The first 14 draft picks were used on offensive players, a new record. But six of the next eight picks were used on defenders, including Dallas Turner, who was viewed by some as the top defensive prospect in the class.

    A wildly talented edge rusher, Turner was ranked No. 7 on our big board. Most mock drafts had him going somewhere in the top 10.

    MORE: Analysis and Grades for All 7 Rounds of the 2024 NFL Draft

    Many ticketed Turner for the Atlanta Falcons, who stunned the football world by drafting QB Michael Penix with the No. 8 pick.

    Turner ultimately went 17th overall to the Vikings, who drafted him after moving up from No. 23 to No. 17 in a trade with the Jacksonville Jaguars.

    If you remove the trade aspect and focus solely on the draft slot, this is a steal for the Vikings.

    CB Quinyon Mitchell: No. 22, Philadelphia Eagles

    Cornerback was the Philadelphia Eagles‘ top draft need, and they landed one of the best in the class.

    Quinyon Mitchell was 16th on our big board, but he was higher on others. In any other year, he probably would’ve been a top-15 draft pick.

    Instead, the Toledo product fell to the Eagles, who surprised some by drafting Mitchell ahead of Alabama corner Terrion Arnold.

    Regardless, landing Mitchell at No. 22 represents great value for Philadelphia.

    CB Terrion Arnold: No. 24, Detroit Lions

    The Detroit Lions traded up for this pick, sending Nos. 29 and 73 to the Dallas Cowboys for No. 24 and a 2025 seventh-round pick. With the 24th pick, Dan Campbell and company address their glaring cornerback need by selecting Arnold.

    We had Arnold as the top corner on our big board and the No. 10 prospect overall. That a corner-needy team landed him in the mid-20s was a stunning development, one made possible by the early run on offensive players.

    Plus, the Lions didn’t need to give up too much in the trade. This is a great pick.

    Looking for everything you need surrounding the 2024 NFL Draft? Make sure to check out the latest draft results, overall team grades, and updated best remaining players available at every position!

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