Five potential NFL landing spots for Duke offensive lineman Graham Barton

Graham Barton is expected to be a first-round NFL Draft pick and here's where the Duke football alum might land.
Nov 11, 2023; Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA; Duke Blue Devils offensive lineman Graham Barton
Nov 11, 2023; Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA; Duke Blue Devils offensive lineman Graham Barton / Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

Thursday night, the NFL Draft will begin in Detroit, Michigan. This year, Duke is expected to have a first-round pick, Graham Barton.

Should the offensive linemen hear his name called in round one, it would make him the first Blue Devil to be a first-round pick since Daniel Jones went No. 6 overall to the New York Giants in 2019.

Perhaps one of the best things the 6-foot-5, 313-pounder has going for him is his versatility. During his career in Durham, he's been a starter a center and at left tackle. What's more, many NFL scouts believe that he could easily make the transition to guard on Sundays if needed.

Because of his average arm length, it is believed that Barton's future is as an interior offensive linemen in the NFL. So let's take a look at some potential landing spots for one of the best offensive linemen to ever come out of the Duke football program.

Pick No. 24. . 123. . . Draft . . . 1.

Many believe the Dallas Cowboys are certain to try to improve their offensive line in the first round of this year's draft. Having lost 2023 starting tackle Tyron Smith and starting center Tyler Biadasz to free agency and having added no replacements prior to the draft, there is certainly reason to believe that Dallas will pick an offensive lineman or two early in the draft.

Will the Cowboys be able to land Barton? That might be tough given that they are picking right behind some teams with needs along the O-line.

Also, some think that the Cowboys might try to trade down in the first round to add picks later in the draft. However, if Dallas stays put at 24 and Barton is still on the board, don't be shocked to see Jerry Jones and Co. pull the trigger and get the Blue Devils' star to Big D.

. . . 2. . Draft. Pick No. 25. . 49.

If Dallas doesn't land Barton at 24, might Green Bay select him one pick later? That wouldn't be a shock.

The Packers have a league-high eleven picks so they also have the ammunition to jump ahead of Dallas and other teams to get the player they want. If they covet Barton, that could be a move the Packers make.

Like Dallas, Green Bay has needs at both tackle and center. Though they made the playoffs with Josh Myers at center but he is just an average player and he will almost certainly be allowed to walk via free agency after next season.

On the other hand, Green Bay may consider their need at tackle to be a greater and more pressing issue. They also could go with a defensive back to help bolster a defense that was susceptible to the pass a season ago.

. . 55. Pick No. 20. Draft. . . . 3.

The Pittsburgh Steelers also seem to be a trendy landing spot for Barton. With pick No. 20, they sit right where many think Barton might be selected and they have a need at center.

After releasing Mason Cole in February, the Steelers need a starting center. They could be in a great spot to have their pick of centers in what is a great draft class at that position.

Therefore, they could go with a player such as Oregon's Jackson Powers-Johnson and West Virginia's Zach Frazier. Both might be more desirable centers given that they have more experience at the position than Barton.

. Draft. Pick No. 26. . . . 48. . . 4

A franchise that needs an upgrade at both center and guard is the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. That's why Barton might be a great fit there at pick No. 26.

Over the last two years, Tampa has had arguably the worst rushing attack in the NFL. That's not just because their running backs have been average talents at best but also because of injuries and retirements along their O-line.

They do have Robert Hainsey as their starting center but he's not thought of as a dominant player. Still, his presence may make them look to draft a guard over a center and that could push them to take Barton over Powers-Johnson or Frazier if all three are on the board.

Draft. . . . 59. Pick No. 21. 5. . .

Finally, keep an eye on Miami at pick No. 21. The Dolphins have tried to patch up an offensive line that was suspect in 2023 through free agency but that work will likely continue in the draft.

At center, they signed Aaron Brewer in free agency. He started 40 games for the Tennessee Titans over the past four seasons.

However, the Dolphins also need help at guard. What's more, Sports Illustrated's Omar Kelly suggests they could be looking for a player who can start right away at left guard and then move to tackle in the future. Barton is one of the few first-round picks who might be able to follow that plan so he might be a great fit with the Dolphins.