2014 NFL Draft: Team-by-Team Day 1 Results and Grades Listing

R. Cory SmithSenior Writer IMay 9, 2014

NEW YORK, NY - MAY 08:  A fan reacts as Johnny Manziel of the Texas A&M Aggies is picked #22 overall by the Cleveland Browns during the first round of the 2014 NFL Draft at Radio City Music Hall on May 8, 2014 in New York City.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Elsa/Getty Images


As insane as the build up was for the 2014 NFL draft, the first round lived up to the hype on Thursday night. With everything from personalized walk-up music to predraft engagements, this year's draft day had everything.

From Blake Bortles being selected near the top of the draft to Johnny Manziel falling to 22nd overall, the opening round was as enticing as ever.

2014 NFL Draft Selections
PickTeamPlayerPositionSchoolGrades
1.TexansJadeveon ClowneyDE/OLBSouth CarolinaA: Clowney is the best player in the class, so picking him at No. 1 makes sense.
2.Rams (from WSH)Greg RobinsonOTAuburnA: Once again, best offensive tackle makes sense here. Looking to move down, but Robinson is great addition.
3.JaguarsBlake BortlesQBUCFC-: Bortles might end up being the franchise QB. But with no offensive weapons, this is a tough pick to like.
4.Bills*Sammy WatkinsWRClemsonB+: Love the move to get the dynamic WR, but dealing 2015 first-round pick is a stiff price.
5.RaidersKhalil MackOLBBuffaloA+: Potentially best defensive player aside from Clowney now paired with great defensive cast.
6.FalconsJake MatthewsOTTexas A&MA: Huge need for Falcons, and Matthews is most NFL-ready tackle in the class.
7.BuccaneersMike EvansWRTexas A&MA: Mike Evans/Vincent Jackson. Take your pick, both are terrifying.
8.Browns*Justin GilbertCBOklahoma StateB: No need to move up for him, but Gilbert is a great pick alongside Joe Haden.
9.Vikings*Anthony BarrOLBUCLAB+: Fills a need and earned an extra draft pick in the process.
10.LionsEric EbronTENorth CarolinaC+: Easily the most explosive TE in the class, but needs at other positions make this a tough sell.
11.TitansTaylor LewanOTMichiganB-: Great player, but other needs to fill at key positions.
12.GiantsOdell Beckham Jr.WRLSUA-: Not Watkins or Evans, but Beckham has a chance to be just as explosive.
13.RamsAaron DonaldDTPittsburghA: The best defensive line now resides in St. Louis. End of story.
14.BearsKyle FullerCBVirginia TechB: A bit of a reach here for Fuller, but fills a need for the future for Bears.
15.SteelersRyan ShazierOLBOhio StateC: Don't understand this pick at all, but Shazier has a chance to be great in the future.
16.CowboysZack MartinOG/OTNotre DameB+: Not quite Johnny Football, but this helps the team tremendously.
17.RavensC.J. MosleyILBAlabamaA-: After a down year for the Ravens defense, this might fill a need left behind after Ray Lewis' retirement.
18.JetsCalvin PryorFSLouisvilleB+: Solid pick for Jets as possibly the best safety falls in their lap.
19.DolphinsJa'Wuan JamesOTTennesseeC: Fills a need for the team, but certainly not the next OT in line.
20.Saints*Brandin CooksWROregon StateA-: After losing Darren Sproles, Drew Brees now has another explosive weapon in Cooks.
21.PackersHa Ha Clinton-DixFSAlabamaA+: In a perfect world, the Packers would have selected Ha Ha Clinton-Dix. Oh, they did?
22.Browns*Johnny ManzielQBTexas A&MA-: Plenty of question marks coming in, but Manziel has a chance to thrive in Cleveland.
23.ChiefsDee FordDE/OLBAuburnC-: Chiefs needed to go offense here, but picked a player they could have traded up for in the second round.
24.BengalsDarqueze DennardCBMichigan StateA: Amazing value for a team in need at the position.
25.ChargersJason VerrettCBTCUA: See above. Simply a great fit to fill a pressing need for a playoff team.
26.Eagles* (from IND)Marcus SmithDE/OLBLouisvilleC: Several pass-rushers still available, and the Eagles go with a second-rounder? No dice.
27.Cardinals*Deone BucannonSSWashington StateB: Solid player, solid pick. Maybe could have gotten him later, but Bucannon will be a great pro.
28.PanthersKelvin BenjaminWRFlorida StateB: This is a great pick because the team needs a WR, but Benjamin has bust written all over him.
29.PatriotsDominique EasleyDTFloridaB+: Great player and first-round talent, but must stay healthy.
30.49ersJimmie WardSSNorthern IllinoisB-: More pressing needs for the team, but a solid player nonetheless.
31.BroncosBradley RobyCBOhio StateB: After the defensive moves made in offseason, bringing in Roby continues the trend.
32.VikingsTeddy BridgewaterQBLouisvilleA+: Most NFL-ready QB in the draft, and the Vikes trade up to get the fifth-year option.
NFL.com

As for one of the most heralded players at the beginning of the process, Louisville's Teddy Bridgewater barely made it into the first round. The Minnesota Vikings traded with Seattle to move back into the first round and take the potential franchise quarterback.

Before the second round officially kicks off on Friday, here's a look at the entire first round with grades for each team.

 

2014 NFL Draft Grades

Cleveland Browns: A

This was a draft the Cleveland Browns needed to win, and they put it all out there on Thursday night.

Johnny Manziel, the player that many draft analysts believed the Browns would take at No. 4, fell outside of the top 20. Rather than waiting to see if he would drop to 26th, Cleveland made a bold move by climbing to No. 22 to select the quarterback.

Manziel comes in with plenty of confidence, as USA Today points out:

Before picking up Johnny Football, the Browns made a pivotal trade early in the first round.

Sitting at No. 4, Cleveland dealt that pick to the Buffalo Bills, who chose Sammy Watkins. After making the switch, the Browns moved up slightly to the eighth pick to select Oklahoma State cornerback Justin Gilbert.

Alongside Joe Haden, Gilbert has a chance to emerge as a fantastic corner in the AFC North. Chris Mortensen of ESPN notes the entire haul for Cleveland after the first round:

Needless to say, this was a day to remember for Browns fans. Hopefully Manziel works out better than those first-round signal-callers of the past.

 

Jacksonville Jaguars: C-

The Jacksonville Jaguars had only one selection in the first round, but it was a significant whiff for the franchise.

Blake Bortles has a chance to be a great player at the NFL level, but a No. 3 overall pick he's not. The former UCF signal-caller also comes to a team without any offensive weapons, as Michael Irvin of NFL Network notes:

Maurice Jones-Drew is gone. Justin Blackmon likely won't be back for the 2014 season.

On the other side of the ball, the defense ranked 28th in the league in points per game. This is simply not a situation where a rookie quarterback can thrive—especially not one with question marks heading into the draft.

This year can get exponentially better for the Jags with a high pick in the second round, but the first round doesn't look like a success.

 

Minnesota Vikings: A+

OK, so let's talk about the other top-tier quarterback on the board.

Teddy Bridgewater left Louisville with hopes of becoming a No. 1 overall pick. And when he made the announcement, that looked a distinct possibility.

While he took a tumble in the first round, Bridgewater ended up on a team set up for success on offense. Thanks to players like Adrian Peterson and Cordarrelle Patterson around him, and a highly regard coordinator in Norv Turner to mentor him, Bridgewater is set up to thrive with the Vikings.

Throw in the fact that the Vikes also secured a great pass-rushing linebacker in Anthony Barr at No. 9, and they might have won the first round. Along with the Browns, look for the Vikings to grow over the next several seasons.

 

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