Why Are There 31 Picks in the First Round of the 2023 NFL Draft?

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Miami Dolphins owner Stephen Ross walks on the field before the start of an NFL football game against the Cleveland Browns, Sunday, Nov. 13, 2022, in Miami Gardens, Fla. (AP Photo/Doug Murray)
(AP Photo/Doug Murray)
BetMGM @BETMGM Dec 16, 2022, 3:16 PM

The first round of the 2023 NFL Draft will be held at Union Station in Kansas City, Missouri, on April 27, 2023. But the first round will be marginally shorter this year; there will be only 31 picks.

Why Are There 31 Picks in the First Round of the 2023 NFL Draft?

The Miami Dolphins were stripped of their first-round pick in the 2023 NFL Draft for violations of the league’s anti-tampering policy.

After a six-month investigation, the league announced in August 2022 the Dolphins violated the policy three times from 2019-22 when contacting Tom Brady and the agent for Sean Payton.

“The investigators found tampering violations of unprecedented scope and severity,” NFL commissioner Roger Goodell said in announcing the findings. “I know of no prior instance of a team violating the prohibition on tampering with both a head coach and star player, to the potential detriment of multiple other clubs, over a period of several years. Similarly, I know of no prior instance in which ownership was so directly involved in the violations.”

The NFL also took the Dolphins’ 2024 third-round pick, fined team owner Stephen Ross $1.5 million (and suspended him for approximately two and a half months), and fined vice chairman and limited partner Bruce Beal $500,000.

It’s the fourth time since 2008 a team has forfeited its first-round pick. Most recently, the New England Patriots lost their 2016 first-round pick after the Deflategate investigation.

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Our BetMGM editors and authors are sports experts with a wealth of knowledge of the sports industry at all levels. Their coverage includes sports news, previews and predictions, fun facts, and betting.