2012 NFL Draft: NFC North Day One Grades

Andrew GardaFeatured ColumnistApril 27, 2012

NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 26:  A general exterior view of Radio City Music Hall as taxi cabs and cars drive by following the first round of the 2012 NFL Draft at Radio City Music Hall on April 26, 2012 in New York City.  (Photo by Chris Chambers/Getty Images)
Chris Chambers/Getty Images

Well, one day under our belts, and what a doozy!

Talk about herd mentality—the Browns' and Vikings' trading set off a run of trades like we've never seen before. The new rookie salary cap finally had an effect as teams are no longer scared of moving around.

I think a big move up to the No. 3 spot wouldn't have touched off the run like that that ultimately teams saw the Browns were worried about one spot and did likewise.

I had heard on the floor early that teams were chasing their picks, and many did just that.

The NFC North really didn't. However, taking value where it came and making solid picks. I only have one beef, and that is the Vikings moving back into the first for Harrison Smith but, as I have said before, there is no reaching, but if you like a guy, get a guy.

So I've mellowed on the move a bit even if I don't love it.

Here are the Day One Too-Soon-But-Necessary Grades:


Chicago Bears: B+

You can't hate on McClellin whether he sets up across from Briggs or Peppers. A little higher than expected, sure, but the Bears stuck to the plan. I still say offensive line is a need, but it is very clear they do not.


Green Bay Packers: B

They didn't get McClellin (assuming they wanted him as much as we did), but Perry is a solid pick with upside. He, like McClellin, can go DE or OLB, but I think his transition will be a tad rougher hence the minus.

He could be a monster opposite Clay Matthews if he listens to the staff.


Detroit Lions: B+

The Lions stay home, after lots of moving rumors, and get Riley Reiff, who is a tremendous value at this point. A from-Day-One left tackle, he's an immediate upgrade on the O-line and is a great fill of a need by Mayhew and company.

With Doug Martin and David Miller gone, running back may wait another round or two, but it will be interesting to see what they have planned today.


Minnesota Vikings: B/B+

I loved them moving back a spot and getting Kalil, as well as picks. I didn't love the move back into Round 1 for Harrison Smith. That said, the Vikings had a strong Day One, filling two big needs and moving into position for more. Not having a third-round pick is problematic given the talent floating around there, but I wouldn't be shocked to see them move back into the second or get a second third-rounder.

So far, steady as she goes.

Overall I'd say the NFC north did a good job of staying home, and yet still getting good players who filled needs. As a unit, probably a straight B, but after one day of draft they all look pretty good.