Instead of doing draft grades, I am going to keep it simple and share the best and worst pick of each round. My criteria is based off of MY EVALUATION OF THE PLAYER, positional value, and whether or not the team filled a need. Hope you guys enjoy!
Best Pick: Brian Burns, Carolina Panthers
The Panthers stole my 5th overall player at 16 and addressed their need at edge while doing so. Ultimately making this the home run pick of the 1st round.
Worst Pick: Daniel Jones, New York Giants
I don’t mean to kick Giant fans when they are down, but boy this was awful. Daniel Jones was not only not worth the 6th overall pick but he wasn’t even the 2nd best quarterback available. This is horrendous value, especially with all of the holes that the Giants have.
However, what really made this pick the worst of the first round, is the long term implications that comes with it. Obviously I don’t actually know how Daniel Jones will be until he plays NFL Football. But based on what I’ve evaluated off of his college tape, I don’t think he has the talent/potential to get this team over the hump and win a championship.
The G-Men are now tied to Jones for the foreseeable future and that prolongs the process of finding the right quarterback. Ultimately leaving this team in no mans land for at least 4 more years.
Dishonorable Mentions: Tytus Howard (Texans), Dexter Lawrence (Giants), Kaleb McGary (Falcons), L.J. Collier (Seahawks)
Best Pick: Jawaan Taylor, Jacksonville Jaguars
Jawaan Taylor was my 2nd highest graded player in the entire class and the Jaguars got him in the 2nd round! When you also factor in their need at right tackle, it’s a no brainer that this was the best pick in the entire draft (if Taylor can stay healthy).
Honorable Mentions: Byron Murphy (Cardinals), Dalton Risner (Broncos), D.K. Metcalf (Seahawks), Nasir Adderly (Chargers)
Worst Pick: Every Receiver Taken Before D.K. Metcalf
What happened to the NFL that we all knew and love? You know, the NFL that took John Ross at 9, Kevin White at 7, and Corey Coleman at 15 solely because they were fast and athletic. Have they changed their stripes that much to sour on a freak of nature like D.K. Metcalf? Or do they view him differently because unlike the guys I just named, Metcalf is actually good at football?
Regardless the reason, how stupid do you have to be to overthink a 6’3, 228 lbs receiver who runs a 4.33 and has dominant tape against SEC competition? Yeah, he might not have the best change of directions skills but take a look at this list of current receivers in the NFL’s agility times and get back me to.
With all of this being said, I understand the 49ers taking Deebo Samuel because he is a perfect scheme fit. I also kind of understand the Eagles selecting J.J. Arcega-Whiteside and the Titans for taking A.J. Brown, if they were looking for more of the prototypical possession/move the sticks type of receiver.
However, the Colts taking Parris Campbell, the Chiefs taking Mecole Hardman, and the Cardinals taking ANDY FREAKING ISABELLA over Metcalf is inexcusable. Metcalf is a easily a round 1 talent in my opinion and has the potential to be one of the best receivers in league. I am not even sure if Campbell, Hardman, or Isabella are number 2’s.
Fortunately for Metcalf, he landed in the perfect situation with Seattle and he will show the 8 teams that took other receivers over him, why they just made a huge mistake.
Dishonorable Mentions: Drew Sample (Bengals), Lonnie Johnson (Texans), Max Scharping (Texans), Jahlani Taval (Lions), Ben Bangou (Colts), Greg Little (Panthers)
Best Pick: Chase Winovich, New England Patriots
Bill Belichick committed highway robbery by selecting Chase Winovich in the 3rd round. That said, not only does Winovich fit the “Patriot way” perfectly, but he also was a top 20 player on my board.
Plus, New England needed someone who could win those 1v1 reps on the edge after losing Trey Flowers in free agency. I am not saying that Winovich will be as good as Flowers, but I believe he can be relied up to get home when the defense needs to get after the QB on long and late downs.
Honorable Mentions: Michael Deiter (Dolphins), Kahale Warring (Texans), Yodney Cajuste (Patriots), Terry McLaurin (Redskins)
Worst Pick: Germaine Pratt, Cincinnati Bengals
It was no secret the Bengals had a huge need at linebacker. But after the Steelers stole Devin Bush right from their grasp, their chances of landing a quality LB in the later rounds were slim to none.
Surprisingly, they had their pick of the litter of that next tier of linebackers in the 3rd round (Blake Cashman, Mack Wilson, Bobby Okereke, etc.). And they picked Germaine Pratt? I didn’t understand the pick at all.
Pratt is not a finished product by any means in terms of managing blocks or processing. Meaning he is going to need some time before he can make an impact. Also, he suffers from some tightness in his lower half, so his range and change of direction ability are really limited. All of that being said, Pratt just wasn’t worth this high of a selection in my opinion .
Dishonorable Mentions: Josh Oliver (Jaguars), Sione Takitaki (Browns), Will Harris (Lions), Jamal Dean (Buccaneers), Every tackle taken over Yodney Cajuste
Best Pick: Hakeem Butler, Arizona Cardinals
Okay, I know I just flipped out on the Cardinals for passing on D.K. Metcalf for Andy Isabella. But in all fairness, they did kind of make up for it by selecting Hakeem Butler in the 4th round. Butler is my 2nd highest graded wide receiver and carries a 1st round grade.
I was shocked that he stuck around till the 4th round but the Cardinals definitely capitalized on the opportunity to steal him. He should immediately be their starting X receiver and a very valuable contributor moving forward.
Honorable Mentions: Amani Hooker (Titans), Chauncey Gardner-Johnson (Saints), Christian Miller (Panthers), Julian Love (Giants)
Worst Pick: Mitch Wishnowsky, San Francisco 49ers
This was by far one of the worst picks of the entire draft. Taking a punter this early is absolutely terrible value, especially when you consider the other players on that were available. I really don’t know what the 49ers were thinking here.
Other Day 3 Picks That I Liked
Blake Cashman (Jets), Charles Omenihu (Texans), Amani Oruwariye (Lions), Michael Jackson (Cowboys), Duke Shelley (Bears), Justin Hollins (Broncos), Kelvin Harmon (Redskins), D’Andre Walker (Titans), Jimmy Moreland (Redskins), Mack Wilson (Browns)