Ohio State Buckeyes: 10 numbers to know for the 2023 NFL Draft

The NFL Draft is set to begin Thursday night and run through Saturday.

Here are 10 numbers to know about Ohio State and it’s potential draftees:

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1. Ohio State has had at least six players drafted each of the last seven years and at least five in each of the last nine.

This year the number figures to fall somewhere from about six to 10.

The average is 7.5 per year since 2012.

2. That includes at least one first-rounder seven years in a row, tying the program record.

Ohio State also had at least one player drafted in the first round from 1991-97 and two other stretches of six in a row.

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3. Ohio State leads the nation with 24 defensive players drafted in the first round since 2000.

That total is not going to increase, though, as all of the Buckeyes considered to be potential first-round picks this year play offense: Quarterback C.J. Stroud, offensive tackle Paris Johnson Jr. and receiver Jaxon Smith-Njigba.

The result will be a three-year drought, the longest for Ohio State since no Buckeye defensive players were taken in the first round from 1980-87.

4. Stroud is aiming to be Ohio State’s third first-round quarterback in five years.

Dwayne Haskins was the No. 15 pick in 2019, and Justin Fields went to the Bears with the No. 11 pick two years later.

Prior to that, Ohio State had only had two first-round quarterbacks: Don Scott (ninth to the Bears in 1941) and Art Schlichter (fourth to the Colts in 1982).

5. Smith-Njigba is expected to be Ohio State’s third receiver taken in the first round in the past two years.

Chris Olave (Saints) and Garrett Wilson (Jets) snapped a 14-year first round receiver drought for the Buckeyes last year.

Ohio State has had 11 receivers drafted since 2015 and is averaging 1.0 per year since 2001.

7. Johnson is looking to be Ohio State’s first first-round offensive tackle since 2016.

The Lions chose Butler High School graduate Taylor Decker in the first round in 2016, ending a drought that went back to Orlando Pace being the No. 1 overall pick of the Rams in 1997.

Since 1967 when the AFL and NFL merged drafts (starting the “common era”), Ohio State has had 13 offensive linemen drafted in the first round. That trails only USC (24) for the most.

Dawand Jones is expected to be picked later in the draft, but if he rises to the first-round Ohio State would have two first-round offensive linemen for the third time (Rufus Mayes and Dave Foley in 1969 and Kurt Schumacher and Doug France in 1975).

That would also make Ohio State the first school in the common era to have a quarterback, receiver and two offensive linemen drafted in the first round in the same year.

8. Luke Wypler is aiming to be Ohio State’s fifth consecutive starting center to be drafted.

The streak started with Pat Elflein (third round, Vikings, 2017) then continued with Billy Price (first round, Bengals, 2018), Michal Jordan (fifth round, Bengals, 2019) and Josh Myers (second round, Packer, 2021).

Overall, nine Ohio State centers have been drafted since 2002 after having none in the 1990s and three in the ‘80s.

9. Zach Harrison should become the ninth OSU defensive end drafted since Larry Johnson became the position coach in 2014.

Harrison could be the first taken earlier than the fifth round since Chase Young went No. 2 overall in 2020.

From 2010-20, Ohio State had nine DEs taken in the fourth round or earlier.

Last year snapped a three-year streak of Ohio State having at least one defensive tackle drafted. Taron Vincent and Jerron Cage are candidates this year but both might be more likely to be signed as free agents.

10. Cornerback Cam Brown and safety Ronnie Hickman are also hoping to be drafted.

If neither is picked, Ohio State will go back-to-back years without a defensive back drafted for the first time since 2007-08.

The last time Ohio State had no cornerbacks drafted two years in a row was 2012-13.

The Buckeyes will not have a first round cornerback for the third year in a row after having four first-rounders from 2017-2020.

Alabama could tie Ohio State for the most first-round defensive backs drafted in the past 15 years (nine).

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