State Supremacy, A Look Into The NFL Draft

The states of Florida, California, Texas, Georgia and Ohio have accounted for nearly 50% of the draft selections over the last three years.

Scout.com

Last Monday I was pouring over the NFL Draft for Scout.com, trying to identify trends, where the players came from, etc. In doing so something really jumped out at me – 

The states of Florida, Texas, California and Georgia produced 121 of the 256 draft prospects, which totals 47.3%. Add the state of Ohio and that percentage is 51.6. 

Did you realize that those five states alone made up over half the NFL draft picks earlier this month?

I did not. 

So I decided to really jump in and study the last three NFL Drafts.  My first look was into the state’s themselves, which ones were generating the most players and taking a look at the numbers on a per capita basis. There are some interesting findings.

Over the NFL Drafts of 2012, 2013 and 2014 there have been 763 players selected. In that time, the states of Florida, Texas and California have produced 35.65% of draftees. Add Georgia and the total is 42.3%. Factor in Ohio and it’s 47.3%.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the United States currently has a population of 317 million. The top five states in this exercise, Florida, California, Texas, Georgia and Ohio, have a combined population of 106.22 million, which corresponds to 33.5% of the population.

So if you look at the draftees based on population and per capita numbers, the big board looks a little different and it’s here where things get interesting. 

South Carolina, with a population of roughly 4.77 million, had the highest numbers of players drafted per capita at 5.66/million. It’s fitting that this past draft’s top overall pick was defensive end Jadeveon Clowney from Rock Hill, S.C.

Coming in at No. 2 was Louisiana. The Bayou State has a population of 4.64 million and a 5.32 number per capita. I firmly believe that this number would have been higher if it were not for Hurricane Katrina in 2005. Thousands in the Bayou State were displaced and moved to neighboring states like Texas, Mississippi and Alabama. Just the city of New Orleans alone is 29% smaller in population than prior to 2005. A perfect example here was 2013 [San Diego Chargers) 1st Round pick D.J. Fluker, who fled New Orleans for Mobile, Ala. at the time of this devastating storm. 

For the rest of my findings, please check out my story, State Supremacy, on Scout.com.