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NFL Draft Grades: Best and Worst Picks of 2nd Round

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NFL Draft Grades: Best and Worst Picks of 2nd Round
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While the first round of the NFL draft is always hyped, it's not just about the first round. Throughout the years, we've seen plenty of second-round prospects blossom in the NFL. 

Players such as Baltimore Ravens linebacker Courtney Upshaw, St. Louis Rams cornerback Janoris Jenkins, Miami Dolphins offensive tackle Jonathan Martin and Ravens guard Kelechi Osemele were all selected in the second round of the 2012 NFL draft.

Here's a look at the best and worst picks in the second round of the 2013 draft.

 

Best

39. New York Jets: Geno Smith, QB, West Virginia

Grade: A

Landing the best quarterback in the 2013 class at No. 39 overall isn't bad at all. And don't tell me there wasn't a need under center. Mark Sanchez has had plenty of time to prove himself in the NFL. Geno Smith has the arm strength, accuracy and mobility to become a franchise quarterback.

 

40. San Francisco 49ers: Cornellius "Tank" Carradine, DE, Florida State

Grade: A-

Tank Carradine would have easily been a first-round pick if he hadn't torn his ACL last season. He outplayed both Bjoern Werner and Brandon Jenkins at Florida State in 2012. When healthy, he's an explosive, agile, strong player. He's been compared to New York Giants defensive end Justin Tuck. He could become the successor to Justin Smith in San Francisco.

 

53. Cincinnati Bengals: Margus Hunt, DL, SMU

Grade: B+

The Bengals defense already showed great strides last season. Adding an athletic freak of nature in Margus Hunt, at No. 53 overall no less, is phenomenal. Hunt is raw, but his combination of versatility, quickness, strength and length is eye-opening. He blocked 17 kicks in four years at SMU.

 

56. Baltimore Ravens: Arthur Brown, LB, Kansas State

Grade: A

Some draft experts had Arthur Brown going as early as No. 20 overall to the Chicago Bears. It's no wonder why, given Brown's range, instincts, tackling ability and toughness. While he's a bit undersized for an inside linebacker, he displayed the explosiveness at the point of impact at Kansas State to play inside. The Ravens had a clear need in the middle and this was a great place to start.

 

61. Green Bay Packers: Eddie Lacy, RB, Alabama

Grade: A

Are you kidding me? Eddie Lacy was my No. 1 running back in the class and was projected by some to land in the first round, but the Packers get him at No. 61 overall? That's absurd. Green Bay may not have paid a whole lot of attention to the backfield before, but it was near impossible to pass up Lacy this late in the draft.

Add in the fact that Lacy will probably face a lot of one-on-one situations while the Packers spread out the offense and you have yourself a superb pick.

 

Worst

36. Detroit Lions: Darius Slay, CB, Mississippi State

Grade: D+

The Lions had a clear need at cornerback, but why draft a risk in Darius Slay? It's unnecessary. Slay has toughness and length, but his lack of agility and change-of-direction speed worries me. Plus, he tore the meniscus in his knee in February. There were way too many red flags coming into the draft to draft Slay this high.

 

58. Denver Broncos: Montee Ball, RB, Wisconsin

Grade: C-

This isn't college ball, folks. Montee Ball had a superb career at Wisconsin, but his lack of size, speed, strength and explosiveness don't project him well to the NFL. This is the classic case of a sound runner who may not have the measurables to stack up in the pros. Plus, he's not the greatest blocker and you have Peyton Manning under center. He does fit the Broncos' zone-blocking scheme, though.

 

62. Seattle Seahawks: Christine Michael, RB, Texas A&M

Grade: D+

Christine Michael is a very talented running back when healthy, possessing the blend of power and speed that NFL scouts love. But he broke his right tibia during his sophomore season at Texas A&M and tore his left ACL in November 2011. He's an injury risk.

Given the 49ers drafted Marcus Lattimore—the most talented running back in the class—in the fourth round shows how much the Seahawks reached here.

 

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