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The 2024 NFL Combine is imminent. Draft season is here, people. It's time for my first top 25 big board of draft season. There are a few surprising names ranked highly, and a few "consensus" top prospects further down my rankings or not included at all. That's just how everything worked out with my grading system. 

As for that grading system, one key element to keep in mind for every prospect: I assign extra points based on how valuable I view the position they play, and running backs are at the bottom, with no "position addition." Conversely, quarterbacks get the biggest boost. For example, a quarterback can have a lower "raw grade" than, say, linebacker, but position addition will bump the quarterback higher than that linebacker on my big board. 

Let's get to it. Of course, these grades are subject to change, as I place a reasonably heavy emphasis on the combine -- and pro days when necessary -- although my quarterback rankings usually don't change much from here until the draft. 

1. Caleb Williams, QB, USC

Williams' 2023 wasn't as good as 2022. He'd even tell you that. But his natural spatial awareness is on another level, there's pop to the football when it leaves his hands, and he's mostly darn accurate. 

2. Drake Maye, QB, North Carolina

Maye plays with zero fear: unafraid to make any throw, to any portion of the field against any coverage. And right when he lulls you to sleep with majestic throws through tight windows from the pocket, he'll hit you with a 30-yard scramble. 

3. Malik Nabers, WR, LSU 

Nabers has everything you'd want in a modern-day receiver ... except LSU didn't ask him to run many routes. He didn't need to. He emanates explosiveness, he's as scary as a receiver prospect gets after the catch, and he seemingly always finds the football in traffic. 

4. Marvin Harrison, WR, Ohio State

Harrison is as ready-to-go as you're going to get at the receiver position. He's Julio Jones lite. Intimidating size, burst is good, absolutely flies when he's in top gear, and catches the ball like he has magnets in his hands on the vertical portion of the route tree. Plus, he's run like every route imaginable. 

5. Jayden Daniels, QB, LSU

The only concern I have with Daniels is that he didn't see much pressure in his Heisman-winning season at LSU. That scares me with him likely joining one of 2023's worst NFL teams for this upcoming season. 

6. Laiatu Latu, EDGE, UCLA

Latu felt like a first-rounder last year, and he followed a stellar 2022 with another impeccable season as a pass-rusher at NFL defensive end size. He has plenty of length, good power upon contact, and can dip and bend the corner like he's a much shorter, lighter outside rusher.  

7. Terrion Arnold, CB, Alabama

Arnold floats around the field. There's nothing he can't do athletically in a functional way when it comes to playing corner. He plants and drives on comebacks and in-breaking routes, flips his hips to turn and run on verticals, and plays the football like Willie Mays deep down the field. Plus, he's a threat to score after intercepting the football. 

8. Chop Robinson, EDGE, Penn State

Robinson does what's vital for today's edge rushers: when he wins, he wins fast. Quarterbacks are collectively getting the ball out faster than ever, so electric, bendy outsider rushers are more critical than ever. The seven-step drop is long gone, and the five-step drop isn't far behind. As per usual, Penn State will likely have another top combine performer in Robinson, who quietly was just as efficient as a rusher in 2023 than he was during his breakout 2022. 

9. Olu Fashanu, OT, Penn State

Fashanu is still a young, highly talented left tackle prospect without many flaws to his game. The Penn State star has a prototypical build, added strength to his game while staying at school in 2023, and exudes athletic gifts. And he doesn't turn 22 until December. 

10. Byron Murphy, DT, Texas

Murphy is the exact type of defensive tackle worth picking in the top half of the first round. He erupts off the ball every snap -- and I mean, he's freaky explosive -- with speed-to-power conversion and advanced enough hand work to keep interior blockers guessing. He feels like one of the surest bets to rock his combine workout.

For more draft coverage, you can hear in-depth analysis twice a week on "With the First Pick" -- our year-round NFL Draft podcast with NFL Draft analyst Ryan Wilson and former Vikings general manager Rick Spielman. You can find "With the First Pick" wherever you get your podcasts: Apple PodcastsSpotifyYouTube, etc.

11. Taliese Fuaga, OT, Oregon State

There are Penei Sewell glimpses from Fuaga on film. Not joking. Now, he's not as down-after-down dominant like Sewell was at Oregon, but the size, girth, short-area quickness -- that's what I love at the offensive tackle spot. He's a lockdown pass blocker because of those traits, too.

12. Quinyon Mitchell, CB, Toledo

Mitchell is somewhat of a throwback corner in that he wins with length and ball skills in a league that's becoming infiltrated with tiny, lightning-quick separators. I do think the combine will be telling for him. Is he sudden enough to deal with those types at the NFL level after suffocating receiver after receiver in the MAC? 

13. Dallas Turner, EDGE, Alabama

How's Turner going to test? There plenty of buzz about his freakish athletic gifts, which I didn't quite see on film. If he does erupt in Indianapolis, I'll feel better about this lofty ranking. His first two years at Alabama were average -- 2023 was tremendous. The hand work finally arrived. 

14. J.J. McCarthy, QB, Michigan

McCarthy has the tools to be a franchise quarterback despite not being the centerpiece of three highly successful Michigan teams. Natural, albeit at times awkward, improvisational talent jumps off the field. Strong, very live arm, and he can throw with anticipation. 

15. JC Latham, OT, Alabama

Latham is the "once he gets his hands on you, it's over" offensive tackle prospect in this class. He loves the quick set in pass protection and is darn effective with it. In the run game, there's more power and nastiness that could be added, but it's not as if he never punishes anyone. Plug-and-play right tackle, for the most part. 

16. Spencer Rattler, QB, South Carolina

Rattler isn't perfect, but I think we can all agree all the quarterbacks from this loaded class have clear-cut flaws. Beyond that, I'm not sure why Rattler isn't getting significantly more hype at the outset of draft season. Two years ago, everyone had Rattler as a top 10 -- and probably the No. 1 overall selection -- before he transferred and revitalized his collegiate career in the SEC. Sure, South Carolina didn't ascend with Rattler, but the traits are through the roof. Significant arm talent, plus accuracy to all levels, above-average athletic gifts. 

17. Kool-Aid McKinstry, CB, Alabama

McKinstry isn't quite as good as his teammate, yet just because that seems to be the growing consensus -- and how I feel -- doesn't mean he's a dud of a prospect. Length, mirroring skill, press coverage that borders on mastery. McKinstry will be a nice find for a club somewhere in Round 1. 

18. Bo Nix, QB, Oregon

Nix scares me a little, and it's not really his fault. I think the Oregon system ill-prepared him for the next level, although we are seeing more screen/RPO prevalence in the league every year. Traits-wise, Nix has the goods, beyond not possessing a rocket arm. He's a smooth, confident athlete and throws with a quick release. I don't think he was overly accurate on film despite the gaudy completion rate figures.

19. Brock Bowers, TE, Georgia

It's much easier to write the flaws with Bowers' game than list the tremendously long list of positives. He did have some relatively easy drops on film -- which were countered by frequent unbelievably challenging snags -- and he's not particularly big. Still, the runaway top tight end in this draft. 

20. Bralen Trice, EDGE, Washington

Enormous combine for Trice, who doesn't appear to be a spectacular athlete on film. Everything else about his game makes him a joy to watch from a draft angle. Checks box after box from a skills perspective. Quick, diverse and hyper-efficient pass-rush maneuvers. Body control through blockers. Bend, dip -- it's all there. 

21. Amarius Mims, OT, Georgia

Mims is a large human being with amazing balance for his size. So calm in pass protection and when asked to execute complex combo blocks in the run game. Yes, his strides are lumbering. But he covers a lot of ground with said strides, and is as sturdy as they come against bull rushes in this class. 

22. Jer'Zhan Newton, DT, Illinois

Newton's been in the pass-rushing lab at Illinois, and it shows. Name a pass-rush move, and Newton has it in the arsenal. While he's plenty explosive, I don't know how great of an overall athlete he is. That's my one nit-pick on his draft profile.  

23. Nate Wiggins, CB, Clemson

Wiggins gets high in his backpedal, and despite that, he changes directions like a waterbug. Love his length and speed, too. Can he be too grabby? Sometimes, but the physical element of his game is a plus. Another NFL-ready boundary cornerback, mostly tailored to deal with larger, more imposing wideouts. 

24. Ennis Rakestraw, CB, Missouri

Rakestraw is one of the those "where's the flaw?" prospects. Nothing necessarily jumps off the film about his game, maybe beyond his striking ability as a tackler. His plant-and-drive skills are impressive, and he attacks the football at the catch point like a veteran. He does follow routes like he was in the huddle on many plays. 

25. Javon Baker, WR, Central Florida

Entering combine week, Baker is my most sizable "draft crush," regardless of any position, in this class. Baker is a former Alabama wideout turned ultra-efficient weapon for the Knights. Traits galore. Burst, wiggle off the line and after the catch, serious juice down the field, rebounds like a chippy power forward, and has the flexibility to stay balanced while dealing with physicality during the route. He has future No. 1 receiver written all over him.  

Next seven, to get to a top 32: Jared Verse, EDGE, Florida State; Brian Thomas Jr., WR, LSU; Troy Franklin, WR, Oregon; Rome Odunze, WR, Washington; Jordan Morgan, OT, Arizona; Michael Penix, QB, Washington; Darius Robinson, EDGE, Missouri... and at No. 33 -- Ainias Smith, WR, Texas A&M