Race for the No. 1 pick in 2024 NFL Draft: Bears sitting pretty, but don’t rule out Giants


We are now 10 weeks through the 2023 NFL season, and everyone is paying attention to the ever-changing playoff picture. There’s another race that’s happening on the other side of the spectrum, however, and that’s the race for the No. 1 overall pick in the 2024 NFL Draft.
As it stands, there are four teams considered to be the favorites to win the Caleb Williams sweepstakes: The Chicago Bears, New York Giants, Arizona Cardinals and Bill Belichick’s New England Patriots. Which squad will “out-lose” the others over the next eight weeks? Let’s take a look.
Chicago Bears (and their pick from Carolina Panthers)
Eight months ago, the Bears sold the No. 1 overall pick in the 2023 NFL Draft to the Panthers for wide receiver D.J. Moore, two picks in the 2023 draft, Carolina’s 2024 first-round pick and a 2025 second-round pick. The Bears, who currently sit at 3-7, again have a shot at the top pick in the draft with their own selection, and also with the pick they got from the Panthers, who are 1-8!
No. 1 overall pick Bryce Young has not taken the Panthers where they want to go just yet, while No. 2 overall pick C.J. Stroud now finds himself in the MVP conversation. Yikes. The Panthers are currently the lone one-win team in the NFL, and they don’t even own their first-round pick! Talk about a nightmare scenario.
Since the Bears own two numbers in this lotto drawing, they obviously have the best chance to earn that top pick. According to SportsLine data scientist Stephen Oh, the Bears have a 38.4% chance to win the No. 1 overall pick, and a 90.9% chance of earning a top-three pick.
Bears’ remaining schedule
Projected final record: 5-12
Panthers’ remaining schedule
Projected final record: 3-14
New York Giants
The Giants are arguably the biggest disappointment of the 2023 season. Last year, Brian Daboll won NFL Coach of the Year, the Giants made the playoffs and even upset the Vikings and Daniel Jones landed a lucrative, multi-year extension. This season, the Giants are 2-8, rank dead last in scoring (11.8 points per game) and Jones tore his ACL and is out for the remainder of the year. To make matters worse, backup quarterback Tyrod Taylor is also on injured reserve, which forced undrafted rookie Tommy DeVito into the starting lineup. This past Sunday, New York was defeated by the Cowboys, 49-17.
According to SportsLine’s Oh, the Giants have a 22.7% chance to win the No. 1 overall pick, and a 61.2% to secure a top three pick. The forecast assumes Taylor will be back after the Giants’ Week 13 bye, but DeVito starting for the remainder of the season would skyrocket New York’s No. 1 pick chances to over 30%.
Giants remaining schedule
Week Opponent 11 at Washington Commanders 12 vs. New England Patriots 14 vs. Green Bay Packers 15 at New Orleans Saints 16 at Philadelphia Eagles 17 vs. Los Angeles Rams 18 vs. Philadelphia Eagles
Projected final record: 3-14
Arizona Cardinals
The Cardinals entered 2023 as the preseason favorites to be the worst team in the league. However, Arizona has over-performed. Joshua Dobbs kept the Cards competitive through the early stages of the regular season, and now Kyler Murray is back under center — and he looked rather spry in his first action of the year. Sunday’s win over the Falcons took Arizona’s chances for the top pick from over 40% to under 20%.
What’s clear is that Arizona does not have interest in “tanking for Caleb.” If it did, the Cardinals would not be sitting at 2-8. That’s not to say the Cardinals are Super Bowl contenders. They are clearly in the mix for the top pick, but SportsLine’s Oh gives Arizona just an 18% chance of picking first in the 2024 NFL Draft, and a 61.3% chance of landing in the top three.
Cardinals’ remaining schedule
Week Opponent 11 at Houston Texans 12 vs. Los Angeles Rams 13 at Pittsburgh Steelers 15 vs. San Francisco 49ers 16 at Chicago Bears 17 at Philadelphia Eagles 18 vs. Seattle Seahawks
Projected final record: 5-12
New England Patriots
A factual statement that is hard to believe: The Patriots are a bad football team and Bill Belichick is on the hot seat. The Patriots are 2-8. New England didn’t have eight losses in a single season from 2001-19.
The Patriots have a quarterback problem, and an offensive problem at large. It feels like we are nearing the end of the Belichick era in New England. Whether he retires at year’s end or is traded, who knows? The bottom line is that the Patriots are very much in the running for the No. 1 overall pick in the 2024 NFL Draft. After their gross loss to the Indianapolis Colts in Germany, the Patriots’ chances for the No. 1 overall pick went from just 7% to 17.1%, per SportsLine. New England has a 50.6% chance at a top three pick.
Patriots’ remaining schedule
Projected final record: 5-12
SportsLine top pick odds


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