Most NFL draft picks came from the Southeastern Conference

Draft Browns Football
Myles Garrett of Texas A&M puts on a Cleveland Browns hat after being the top pick.

The 2017 NFL draft was marked by wheeling and dealing and record crowds, and the Southeastern Conference, considered the best in college football, was again the runaway winner in most talent delivered.

There were a record 49 trades involving draft picks, many of which occurred before Thursday, the first day of the draft. The old mark was 34 trades, set in 2008.

There were 19 trades just Saturday.

Teams that targeted certain players didn't mind giving up current or former picks. The Minnesota Vikings were the most active, making seven deals.

Through it all, Philadelphia shined in the national spotlight. The NFL announced that 250,000 people attended the three-day event on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway, with the draft itself staged outside the Art Museum.

"Philadelphia has been a fantastic host, and in our eyes the bar has been raised for what the draft is and can be," Peter O'Reilly, the NFL's senior vice president of events, said in a phone interview.

O'Reilly said the NFL is likely to announce the city for next year's draft toward the end of the summer. Philadelphia was announced Sept. 1 as the host of this year's draft.

For the 11th consecutive year the SEC had the most players drafted. According to the Associated Press, 53 SEC players drafted. The other Power Five leagues in order were the Atlantic Coast Conference (42), Pac-12 (36), Big Ten (35), and Big 12 (14).

The Big 12 total is significant because a non-Power Five league, the American Athletic Conference, had a record 15 players drafted. Temple, South Florida, and Houston each had three players drafted.

The SEC had the first player drafted and also Mr. Irrelevant, the final pick.

Texas A&M defensive end Myles Garrett went No. 1 to Cleveland, and Mr. Irrelevant was quarterback Chad Kelly of Mississippi, the nephew of Hall of Fame quarterback Jim Kelly. He went to Denver with the draft's final pick. He was the 10th quarterback selected.

Michigan had the most players drafted, 11.

mnarducci@phillynews.com

@sjnard