Ohio State is arguably the best football school in the entire country when it comes to NFL representation and talent. Knowing this, the question is raised on how a team of all former Buckeyes would do in the NFL.
With players like Ezekiel Elliott and Michael Thomas able to hold down things on offense while the defense is totally stacked, it wouldn’t be farfetched to think that the team would be able to do more than hold its own in the NFL.
To test out this theory I put all of the Ohio State players in the NFL onto the New Orleans Saints on Madden 20 as they are the team that seemingly had the most Buckeyes on the roster already. With that being said, the rookie class this season along with Ryan Shazier will not be a part of this team. This means that without players like Chase Young, Jeff Okudah, and J.K. Dobbins on the roster, the team is not even at its full potential.
The starting offense features Dwyane Haskins as the starting quarterback, Ezekiel Elliot starting at running back with Carlos Hyde backing him up, Michael Thomas, Terry McLaurin, Curtis Samuel, and Ted Ginn Jr. playing wide receiver, Jeff Huereman at tight end, Taylor Decker at left tackle, Andrew Norwell at left guard, Cory Linsley at center, Pat Elflein at right guard, and Isaiah Prince at right tackle. The offense is very strong in certain areas like running back and receiver, however, in terms of quarterback and parts of the line, they are lacking.
The defense features Joey Bosa at left end, Nick Bosa at right end, Cameron Heyward and Johnathan Hankins at the defensive tackle spots, John Simon coming from the left end position to play left outside linebacker, Raekwon McMillan playing middle linebacker, Darron Lee at right outside linebacker, Marshon Lattimore, Denzel Ward, Bradley Roby, and Gareon Conley playing cornerback, Malik Hooker at free safety, and Malcolm Jenkins at strong safety.
On special teams, Mike Nugent is the team’s starting kicker while Cameron Johnston is the team’s punter.
Relatively the team is a very young roster in most spots and will continue to improve year after year, however, we will only be simulating a single season. It is a very balanced roster with a lot of depth. I am predicting the team will finish the year at 9-7 and will make the playoffs. With them being placed in the NFC South, there will be some but not the stiffest competition which means that a 9-7 finish should be enough for a playoff spot.
At the end of the season, the New Orleans Buckeyes finished with a record of 9-7 as predicted, however, I underestimated the strength of the NFC South, and the rest of the conference as 9-7 was not enough for the team to make the playoffs.
Ezekiel Elliott was the only player on the team to make the Pro Bowl which is very surprising considering all of the young talent on the roster.
The offense was carried by Zeke who finished third in rushing in the NFL. Dwayne Haskins struggled greatly even with all of his weapons on offense. He finished 27th in passing yards, 17th in passing touchdowns, and 33rd in passer rating. Michael Thomas greatly suffered from the quarterback play as he did not even crack 1,000 yards on the season.
This while I predicted the record correctly, it was a bit of a disappointing season in terms of only missing the playoffs by one game.
However, this shows just how well rounded of a program Ohio State is and how great they are at producing NFL talent.