We’re still buzzing after NFL Draft and this is the week where every sports site and news paper asks the same question:
How would you grade your team’s draft class?
In some ways it is a pointless effort as it is so subjective that you can’t really take it seriously. (But its fun!) We should be able to enjoy and sit back knowing in 2-3 years this same class will be judged differently.
Every team has high hopes right now (aside from the Texans). So, let’s get into our grades for the NFC East! For a full list of every team’s draft grades, check them out here!
SELECTIONS: (26). Jordan Love, QB, Utah State/ (62). AJ Dillon, RB, Boston College/ (94). Josiah Deguara, TE, Cincinnati/ (175). Kamal Martin, LB, Minnesota/ (192). Jon Runyan, G, Michigan/ (208). Jake Hanson, C, Oregon/ (209). Simon Stepaniak, G, Indiana/ (236). Vernon Scott, S, TCU/ (242). Jonathan Garvin, DE, Miami (FL)
Lets start with the elephant in the room- Aaron Rodgers.
A few weeks before the draft the Packers Quarterback said this:
What do the packers do?
The team didn’t use a first round pick (or any pick) on a wide receiver for Rodgers, instead the team traded the No. 30 selection for the Miami Dolphins‘ spot at 26, a move that cost them a fourth-round pick……….
Best Pick: Milwaukee Sports radio host Bart Winkler couldn’t have phrased this any better:
Worst pick: Josiah Deguara, TE, Cincinnati: Coach Matt LeFluer said about him: “We will try and emulate some that stuff in terms of how the 49ers use (Kyle) Juszczyk,” Deguara had a 6th round grade according to Dane Brugler. That sounds great, but not so much for a player that most had a 6th round grade on. You don’t draft Fullbacks in the third round when you don’t have a #2 receiver.
Sleeper Pick: Jordan Love, QB, Utah: This pick is very forward thinking and could be genius if the NFL doesn’t play this upcoming season.
Grade: D –
SELECTIONS: (22). Justin Jefferson, WR, LSU/ (31). Jeff Gladney, CB, TCU/ 2 (58). Ezra Cleveland, T, Boise State/ (89). Cameron Dantzler, CB, Mississippi State/ (117). D.J. Wonnum, LB, South Carolina/ (130). James Lynch, DE, Baylor/ (132). Troy Dye, LB, Oregon/ (169). Harrison Hand, CB, Temple/ (176). K.J. Osborn, WR, Miami (FL)/ (203). Blake Brandel, G, Oregon State/ (205). Josh Metellus, S, Michigan/ (225). Kenny Willekes, DE, Michigan State/ (244). Nate Stanley, QB, Iowa/ (249). Brian Cole II, S, Mississippi State/ 253). Kyle Hinton, G, Washburn
Best pick: Where do we start? I had second to third round grades on their first SEVEN picks. Good teams become great teams by reloading in the draft. If I had to say anything I would say that Jefferson is a steal at 25, has played in big games and will be able to fill in well for Stephon Diggs. They were even able to steal a 4th rounder next year from Chicago!
Worst pick: Nate Stanley, QB, Iowa. I am being extremely picky here. Stanley was a long term, tough starter at Iowa with good back up potential.. The Vikes had so many 4th’s that I personally would have liked to see a Quarterback selected just in case Kirk Cousins has another down year.
Sleeper pick: Ezra Cleveland, T, Boise State- Cleveland was amazing value at 58th overall. There were rumors projecting him as high as the 20’s and they got him in the late 50’s. Cleveland can come in and start right away or learn for a year.
SELECTIONS: (43). Cole Kmet, TE, Notre Dame/ (50). Jaylon Johnson, CB, Utah/ (155). Trevis Gipson, DE, Tulsa/ (163). Kindle Vildor, CB, Georgia Southern/ (173). Darnell Mooney, WR, Tulane/ (226). Arlington Hambright, G, Colorado/ (227). Lachavious Simmons, G, Tennessee State
Best pick: Jaylon Johnson, CB, Utah: Johnson was tremendous value at 50 overall and almost all draft graders gave this pick an A.. Johnson is a physical press corner who has some Richard Sherman in him. He did have a few shoulder injuries but only missed two games in two years. He gave an assessment of his play post-draft saying ““Honestly, I’m a baller”.
Worst pick: Trading a future4th rounder to move up to #155 overall. Ryan Pace continues to trade future draft capitol and this will catch up to him.
Polarizing Pick: Cole Kmet, TE, Notre Dame. Kmet was seen as the “safe pick” but drove many Bears writers and fans up a wall because they felt the team had reached. Kmet was a two-sport star at Notre Dame who is only beginning to tap into his full potential. He is 6’6 and 260 ibs so he reminds some people of Kyle Rudolph or Jason Witten. Rookie right ends rarely produce well in the first year, however. Walterfootball.com HATED the pick:
Chicago Bears: Cole Kmet, TE, Notre Dame – O’BRIEN Gradehttps://walterfootball.com/nfldraftgrades2.php
Ryan Pace needs help. I don’t understand why he thinks he needs to spend so many high resources on tight ends, especially when none of them are close to elite. He paid tons of money to Jimmy Graham this offseason, only to select a tight end in the second round? Why!? And why didn’t he pick the tight end some teams had higher on their boards, Adam Trautman? Kmet was not the consensus best player at his position, and Pace could’ve obtained someone similar in the third round, or perhaps someone slightly worse early on Day 3. This is an “F” grade all the way. Pace needs to go.
SELECTIONS: (3). Jeff Okudah, CB, Ohio State/ (35). D’Andre Swift, RB, Georgia/ (67). Julian Okwara, LB, Notre Dame/ (75). Jonah Jackson, G, Ohio State/ (121). Logan Stenberg, G, Kentucky/ (166). Quintez Cephus, WR, Wisconsin/ (172). Jason Huntley, RB, New Mexico State/ (197). John Penisini, DT, Utah/ (235). Jashon Cornell, DT, Ohio State
Best pick: DeAndre Swift, RB, Georgia: Many people viewed Swift as the best RB in this class. He will be an amazing compliment to running back Kerryon Johnson;: excellent in the pass game and a true 3-down back.
Worst pick: Jeffrey Odukah, CB, Ohio State: This isn’t about Odukah, this is about the Lions organization. Their star corner Darius Slay was traded to the Eagles after losing respect for the team. If they were able to keep Slay they would have possibly had the best CB tandem in the league. This is how bad teams stay bad.
Sleeper Pick: Logan Stenberg, G, Kentucky. Jackson and Stenberg will be starting for the Lions for possibly the next 8 years. Both players are tough as hell and are the kind of people you’d want with you in a bar fight.