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NFL Draft Rankings: Executives rank Marcus Mariota ahead of Jameis Winston

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Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are likely to draft Jameis Winston, but an anonymous poll of NFL executives found no one willing to call him the best player in the draft. Bob McGinn of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel went through his annual polling of anonymous executives, and after asking 19 people he came up with 2.5 first-place votes for Marcus Mariota and none for Winston, with most of the votes going to Leonard Wiliams and Amari Cooper.

That goes against the consensus, but the culprit may be the fact that McGinn listed first-place votes only. More telling will be the full list, including comments, which has not been published yet. That list is always interesting, if filled with incendiary quotes.

NFL media continue to treat the whole Marcus-Mariota-to-Tampa-Bay thing as a remote possibility, but it continues to be exceedingly unlikely. There have been a number of recent reports that would suggest otherwise, but the overwhelming weight of reports and (most notably) local beat writers continues to be on the side of the Bucs taking Jameis Winston.