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Rivals Rankings Week: Who should be No. 1 in the 2025 Rivals250?

David Sanders, Jr.
David Sanders, Jr.

The 2025 rankings are getting a refresh this week and the national analyst team has varying opinions about who should sit atop the Rivals250. Five-star defensive lineman Elijah Griffin has held the No. 1 ranking since March but there are plenty of challengers seeking to dethrone him.

The national analysts - Adam Friedman, John Garcia Jr. and Adam Gorney - give their takes on who they think is the most likely to move into the No. 1 spot.



Sunday: Who should be No. 1 in the 2025 Rivals250?

Monday: Five-Star Countdown | Meet the new five-stars | Podcast

Tuesday: Rivals250 released | Who could earn a fifth star | Gorney's thoughts

Wednesday: Offensive position rankings released

Thursday: Defensive position rankings released

Friday: State rankings released


FINAL 2023 TEAM RANKINGS: Comprehensive (overall) ranking | High school/JUCO ranking | Transfer portal ranking

CLASS OF 2024 RANKINGS: Rivals250 | Team | Position | State

CLASS OF 2025 RANKINGS: Rivals250 | Team | Position | State

CLASS OF 2026 RANKINGS: Rivals100

TRANSFER PORTAL: Latest news | Transfer search | Transfer tracker/player ranking (football) | Transfer team ranking (football) | Transfer tracker/player ranking (basketball) | Transfer team ranking (basketball) | Rivals Portal Twitter



FRIEDMAN'S TAKE: David Sanders Jr.

Of the prospects at the premium positions in the 2025 class, none are as polished or have as high a ceiling as Sanders. The offensive tackle is progressing at an impressive rate and it showed this fall. Sanders didn't just beat the competition with solid technique like he did last year. He overpowered defensive linemen on a consistent basis. Even when he wasn't at 100-percent, Sanders was just as dominant. His aggressive style even carried over to the other side of the ball when he lined up at defensive end and put up solid numbers.


GARCIA'S TAKE: David Sanders Jr.

This battle at the top of the 2025 rankings is as good as it gets, with multiple candidates jockeying for position. But when one of the prospects can dominate in the trenches on both sides of the ball, it creates a different level of comfort in such a lofty ranking. Sanders has the tools to continue to work both lines and have his choice of position one day, but as most have projected and as the NFL Draft and its successive contracts have shown, offensive tackle is the spot to be and Sanders is the most athletic of what is shaping up to be a strong group on the edge. He is tested, he is a winner and he still has good room to improve his overall game at this stage, too, making him the ideal No. 1 overall recruit as the recruiting world begins to turn the page to the class of 2025.


GORNEY'S TAKE: Bryce Underwood

Based on historical draft trends and Bryce Underwood's incredible talent, the Belleville, Mich., five-star quarterback should be the No. 1 player in the 2025 class.

Underwood has incredible arm talent, he has put up huge stats, he's looked great for years and the fact is that NFL teams are taking quarterbacks No. 1 overall at a far bigger clip than offensive or defensive linemen.

There are always going to be some occurrences where a quarterback is not No. 1 overall in the country - like in 2024 where we've opted for Ohio State wide receiver commit Jeremiah Smith - but Underwood deserves the top spot. That's no criticism of David Sanders Jr., Elijah Griffin or anyone else but because of history and because of his talent, Underwood should be the pick.