As the NFL draft concluded, it is time for the grades.
Before getting to that, allow me to not so humbly brag that I called my shot with Texans trading to 3 and taking Will Anderson when no other “insider” saw it coming.
Without further ado, let’s grade some teams.
- Buffalo Bills
Draft picks: TE Dalton Kincaid, G O’Cyrus Torrence, LB Dorian Williams, WR Justin Shorter, G Nick Broeker, CB Alec Austin
The Bills have an identity crisis on offense right now. They have a unicorn at QB with Josh Allen. That alone is going to keep them relevant and in the hunt. However, when things get tighter in the playoffs, you can’t just rely on the magic of said unicorn. Sure, they get Dalton Kincaid. But, this is an offense that already has Dawson Knox and doesn’t use the tight end very much. So unless we are about to see the Bills start going to 12 or 22 personnel more than 9% of their plays, not a fan.
- Miami Dolphins
Draft picks: CB Cam Smith, RB Devon Achane, WR Elijah Higgins, OT Ryan Hayes
Miami decided to tamper with the league and lose draft capital so there’s that. Given the limited draft capital, they did ok. They didn’t address any needs up front on both sides of the ball.
- New England Patriots
Draft picks: CB Christian Gonzalez, DT Keion White, S Marte Mapu, C Jake Andrews, K Chad Ryland, G Sidy Sow, G Atonio Mafi, WR Kayshon Boutte, P Bryce Baringer, WR Demario Douglas, CB Ameer Speed, CB Isaiah Bolden
Belichick doing Belichick shit basically. Wash, rinse, repeat. After Gonzalez and White, it was the the same reaction executives had to Rachel Phelps roster list in Major League.
- New York Jets
Draft picks: EDGE Will McDonald IV, G/C Joe Tippmann, OT Carter Warren, RB Israel Abanikanda, LB Zaire Barnes, CB Jerrick Bernard-Converse, TE Zach Kuntz
Part of the draft includes trading picks for Aaron Rodgers. That has to count for something. As far as what they did with the capital they had, they left much to be desired.
- Baltimore Ravens
Draft picks: WR Zay Flowers, LB Trenton Simpson, EDGE Tavius Robinson, CB Kyu Blu Kelly, OT Malaesala Aumavae-Laulu, G/C Andrew Vorhees
A giant black cloud has been over the Ravens this offseason up until they signed Lamar Jackson to a new deal. They won big with Flowers and Simpson. If Kelly manifests into a quality starter, good night Irene. That’s a haul.
- Cincinnati Bengals
Draft picks: EDGE Myles Murphy, CB D.J. Turner, S Jordan Battle, WR Charlie Jones, RB Chase Brown, WR Andre Iosivas, P Brad Robbins, WR D.J. Ivey
Cinci’s secondary was gutted this offseason losing Jessie Bates and Von Bell. Not only did they address some of that with Turner and Battle, they knocked their first round pick out of the park with Murphy. A quality and consistent pass rush is a secondary’s best friend.
- Cleveland Browns
Draft picks: WR Cedric Tillman, DT Siaka Ika, OT Dawand Jones, EDGE Isaiah McGuire, QB Dorian Thompson-Robinson, CB Cameron Mitchell, G/C Luke Wypler
They didn’t have a pick until round 3. But, they made the most of it. The biggest need was DT to help with run support. They got that with Ika.
- Pittsburgh Steelers
Draft picks: OT Broderick Jones, CB Joey Porter Jr., DT Keeanu Benton,TE Darnell Washington, LB Nick Herbig, CB Cory Trice, G/OT Spencer Anderson
Pass protection, check. Top corner, check. They were getting an A+ from me the second they drafted Joey Porter Jr. I wanted to see that happen. This is a scene straight out of Draft Day.
- Houston Texans
Draft picks: QB C.J. Stroud, EDGE Will Anderson Jr., C Juice Scruggs, WR Tank Dell, DT Dylan Horton, LB Henry To’oTo’o, G/C Jarrett Patterson, WR Xavier Hutchinson, S Brandon Hill
Not only did I call it, I love what they did. They ignored the bullshit about CJ Stroud. While I am not overly excited about any QBs this year (probably has more to do with Caleb Williams next year), I like Stroud the best. Then they got the defensive centerpiece to go along with their QB. Huge win for a rebuilding franchise.
- Indianapolis Colts
Draft picks: QB Anthony Richardson, CB Julius Brents, WR Josh Downs, OT Blake Freeland, DT Adetomiwa Adebawore, CB Darius Rush, S Daniel Scott, TE Will Mallory, RB Evan Hull, LB Titus Leo, CB Jaylon Jones, OT Jake Witt
Sure, they hit nearly all needs. At the end of the day, they fell in love with the athleticism of Richardson. Maybe I eat my words here.
- Jacksonville Jaguars
Draft picks: OT Anton Harrison, TE Brenton Strange, RB Tank Bigsby, LB Ventrell Miller, EDGE Tyler Lacy, EDGE Yasir Abdullah, S Antonio Johnson, WR Parker Washington, CB Christian Braswell, S Erick Hallett II, G Cooper Hodges, DT Raymond Vohasek, FB/EDGE/DT Derek Parish
Let me REACH for my beer. They hit all of their needs. But, they reached on many of the guys they grabbed.
- Tennessee Titans
Draft picks: OT/G Peter Skoronski, QB Will Levis, RB Tyjae Spears, TE Josh Whyle, OT Jaelyn Duncan, WR Colton Dowell
Levis falling and them being aggressive, they nabbed the guy many projected them to take in Round 1. Huge win getting him and replacing Taylor Lewan. Where this falls apart is who the hell are the Titans going to throw to?
- Denver Broncos
Draft picks: WR Marvin Mims, LB Drew Sanders, CB/S Riley Moss, S JL Skinner, C Alex Forsyth
Limited from the Russell Wilson deal, Broncos landed some decent playmakers on defense.
- Kansas City Chiefs
Draft picks: EDGE Felix Anudike-Uzomah, WR Rashee Rice, OT Wanya Morris, CB/S Chamarri Conner, EDGE B.J. Thompson, DT Keondre Coburn, CB Nic Jones
Winning Super Bowls means you’re the last dog to the bowl on draft day. Chiefs have gotten used to that and have made a habit maximizing their spot by staying disciplined to draft needs.
- Las Vegas Raiders
Draft picks: EDGE Tyree Wilson, TE Michael Mayer, DT Byron Young, WR Tre Tucker, CB Jakorian Bennett, QB Aidan O’Connell, S Christopher Smith, LB Amari Burney, DT Nesta Jade Silvera
After picks one and two, lots of reaching for the Raiders. But, I love the Wilson and Mayer selections. They replace Darren Waller and add another stud pass rusher to pair with Maxx Crosby and Chandler Jones.
- Los Angeles Chargers
Draft picks: WR Quentin Johnston, DT Tuli Tuipulotu, LB Daiyan Henley, WR Derius Davis, G Jordan McFadden, DT Scott Matlock, QB Max Duggan
Hopefully they can work it out with Austin Ekeler. Not going RB given the noise is a head scratcher. Go Horned Frogs I guess.
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