Power Ranking Every AFC West Team's Rookie Class
Let's not get too complicated with this first set of rookie power rankings. We'll revisit the rankings at some point in the future.
We'll have a better idea how these rookie classes will fair after they have a chance to play and the teams cut down their roster to 80 on August 28 and to 53 on September 2.
For now, the Chargers have 28 rookies on their 90-man roster, followed by the Chiefs with 26, the Raiders with 24 and the Broncos with 21. Eight of the Chiefs' 26 rookies are draft picks. The Broncos and Chargers have seven, and the Raiders have six rookie draft selections on their 90-man roster.
Trade Value Chart Ranking
In order to get a fair power ranking at this stage of the season, I assigned each rookie with the corresponding draft pick value as described on Jimmy Johnson's trade value chart. Any and every trade value chart is going to be flawed, so for sake of impartiality I chose the oldest, most well-known one available.
I assigned undrafted picks a value of two, which is equivalent to the final pick of the draft.
The Chiefs had the highest draft selection, and that almost automatically gives them an advantage via the trade value chart method with a total of 2,110.6 points. On the other end of the spectrum is the Raiders, because the team only had one pick in the top 100 with 277.2 points. The Chargers came in with 1,688 points via this method, and the Broncos 1,378.2.
Trade Value Chart Order Method: Chiefs, Chargers, Broncos, Raiders
Projected Starter Ranking
Another extremely simplistic approach is that the first 100 picks should be starters in their first year, while the next 75 are role players and the last 75 are players that need to be developed and aren't likely to see the field. Undrafted players that contribute are obviously a huge bonus.
Through that lens, the Chargers came away with at least two players at the top of the draft that should be 2012 starters. If Ronnie Hillman becomes a starter in Denver, the Broncos will also have two. It appears the Chiefs only drafted one, and the Raiders have several role players, but none are currently projected to start.
Projected Starters Order Method: Chargers, Broncos, Chiefs, Raiders
Starters aren't everything. In today's NFL, there are so many sub-packages that many players are drafted to be sub-package players with the hopes they could develop those players.
My Rookie Class Rankings
1. Chargers: Both Melvin Ingram and Kendall Reyes should be immediate starters, and they waited until late in the draft to find developmental lineman. The Chargers also managed to attract a great number of undrafted free agents.
2. Broncos: Brock Osweiler seems like a wasted pick, but otherwise, the Broncos added good players and addressed many weaknesses. The Broncos didn't attract or want to sign many undrafted free agents, but the ones they did sign all have a shot to make the roster or practice squad.
3. Chiefs: Outside of Dontari Poe, the Chiefs seemed to have overreacted to their need on the offensive line. They did bring in a number of undrafted players, but that's not enough to overcome a lackluster draft.
4. Raiders: The Raiders did a great job with the draft picks they had, and also attracted a number of quality undrafted players. Unfortunately, the Raiders didn't have a pick until the end of the third, and unlike the Chargers, Chiefs and Broncos, couldn't add an immediate quality starter.
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