SI's first NFL draft big board of the football year pitches 40-plus names who should be on the radar for next year's first round.

By Chris Burke
September 02, 2015

The 2015 college football season begins on Thursday night. The 2016 NFL draft season opened as soon as last year's event wrapped on May 2. Scouting is a never-ending grind as teams search for their next potential superstars.

SI's first big board of the football year pitches 40-plus names who should be on the radar.

This is merely a baseline for the start of the season—evaluations will change early and often once players actually return to action this weekend. As always, a reminder that the big board differs from our mock drafts in that this is a straight ranking of the top prospects; the mock drafts attempt to fuse those rankings with team needs to create a bigger picture.

2016 NFL draft primers: SEC | ACC | Big 12 | Big Ten | Pac-12

The top 40, as it stands right now:

Just missed the cut: Adolphus Washington, DT, Ohio State; Reggie Ragland, LB, Alabama; Andrew Billings, DT, Baylor; Corey Robinson, WR, Notre Dame; Demarcus Robinson, WR, Florida; Cody Kessler, QB, USC; Devontae Booker, RB, Utah.

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