After two days of highly entertaining action, the 2014 NFL draft will likely begin to stabilize on the final day as teams fill out their classes with less-heralded prospects. That said, Day 3 is still important when it comes to finding a diamond in the rough.
Some teams prefer to select players with a lot of experience at the college level in the later rounds. They may never become superstars, but they are capable of handling a smaller role right away. Others prefer boom-or-bust prospects with the hope of landing a player who will eventually develop into a key piece down the line.
Regardless of the approach, if a team ends up getting two impact players on the final day, it should be considered a success. Before the remaining rounds get underway, let's check out how every team fared over the first three rounds, including a look at the winners from Day 2.
Rounds 1-3 Grades
|2014 NFL Draft - Grades for Rounds 1-3|
|Arizona Cardinals||SS Deone Bucannon (27), TE Troy Niklas (52)||C+|
|Atlanta Falcons||OT Jake Matthews (6), DL Ra'Shede Hageman (37)||B+|
|Baltimore Ravens||ILB C.J. Mosley (17), DT Tim Jernigan (48)||B+|
|Buffalo Bills||WR Sammy Watkins (4), OT Cyrus Kouandjio (44)||B|
|Carolina Panthers||WR Kelvin Benjamin (28), DL Kony Ealy (60)||B+|
|Chicago Bears||CB Kyle Fuller (14), DT Ego Ferguson (51)||C|
|Cincinnati Bengals||CB Darqueze Dennard (24), RB Jeremy Hill (55)||C+|
|Cleveland Browns||CB Justin Gilbert (8), QB Johnny Manziel (22), OL Joel Bitonio (35)||A-|
|Dallas Cowboys||OT Zack Martin (16), DE Demarcus Lawrence (34)||B|
|Denver Broncos||CB Bradley Roby (31), WR Cody Latimer (56)||B-|
|Detroit Lions||TE Eric Ebron (10), OLB Kyle Van Noy (40)||B|
|Green Bay Packers||FS Ha Ha Clinton-Dix (21), WR Davante Adams (53)||C+|
|Houston Texans||DE Jadeveon Clowney (1), OG Xavier Su'a-Filo (33), TE C.J. Fiedorowicz (65), DT Louis Nix (83)||A|
|Indianapolis Colts||OL Jack Mewhort (59), WR Donte Moncrief (90)||C-|
|Jacksonville Jaguars||QB Blake Bortles (3), WR Marqise Lee (39), WR Allen Robinson (61)||A-|
|Kansas City Chiefs||DE Dee Ford (23), CB Phillip Gaines (87)||D+|
|Miami Dolphins||OT Ja'Wuan James (19), WR Jarvis Landry (63)||C-|
|Minnesota Vikings||OLB Anthony Barr (9), QB Teddy Bridgewater (32), DE Scott Crichton (72)||B-|
|New England Patriots||DT Dominique Easley (29), QB Jimmy Garoppolo (62)||C+|
|New Orleans Saints||WR Brandin Cooks (20), CB Stanley Jean-Baptiste (58)||B+|
|New York Giants||WR Odell Beckham (12), C Weston Richburg (43)||B-|
|New York Jets||FS Calvin Pryor (18), TE Jace Amaro (49)||B|
|Oakland Raiders||OLB Khalil Mack (5), QB Derek Carr (36), OG Gabe Jackson (81)||A-|
|Philadelphia Eagles||DE Marcus Smith (26), WR Jordan Matthews (42)||D|
|Pittsburgh Steelers||OLB Ryan Shazier (15), DL Stephon Tuitt (46)||B+|
|San Diego Chargers||CB Jason Verrett (25), OLB Jeremy Attaochu (50)||B|
|San Francisco 49ers||SS Jimmie Ward (30), RB Carlos Hyde (57), OG Marcus Martin (70), ILB Chris Borland (77)||A-|
|Seattle Seahawks||WR Paul Richardson (45), OL Justin Britt (64)||C-|
|St. Louis Rams||OT Greg Robinson (2), DT Aaron Donald (13), CB Lamarcus Joyner (41), RB Tre Mason (75)||A-|
|Tampa Bay Buccaneers||WR Mike Evans (7), TE Austin Seferian-Jenkins (38)||B+|
|Tennessee Titans||OT Taylor Lewan (11), RB Bishop Sankey (54)||B-|
|Washington Redskins||LB Trent Murphy (47), OT Morgan Moses (66)||C+|
|Picks via NFL.com|
For a full list of picks, visit NFL.com's Draft Tracker.
Day 2 Winners
San Francisco 49ers
In an era where many teams shy away from spending any significant resources on the running game, the 49ers continue to make it a priority. In turn, they were able to get terrific value on running back Carlos Hyde out of Ohio State near the end of Round 2.
Hyde fits the San Francisco mold as a bruising runner who is capable of handling a heavy workload, if necessary. Frank Gore continues to lead the team's depth chart, but history says all of those carries will soon start catching up with him. ESPN Stats and Info showcases why Hyde is a good backup option:
The 49ers proceeded to add USC center Marcus Martin, who's capable of immediately filling a void on the offensive line, while also selecting Wisconsin linebacker Chris Borland and Clemson offensive lineman Brandon Thomas. The latter two picks provide solid long-term value, especially in the case of Thomas, who was a coveted prospect before an ACL injury hurt his stock.
The Jaguars decided to grab Blake Bortles with the third overall pick on Thursday night. They hope he will develop into the franchise quarterback they have spent the better part of a decade trying to find. On Day 2, they made sure to keep building the offense around him.
One of the biggest mistake teams make when investing in a young quarterback is failing to give the signal-caller enough talent to work with. That sets the player up to fail before he even takes a single snap. By adding Marqise Lee and Allen Robinson, that shouldn't be an issue in Jacksonville.
Lee and Robinson are both ready to step in right away as rookies. Factor in receiver Cecil Shorts and tight end Marcedes Lewis, and Bortles should have plenty of options in the passing game. The Jaguars then finished Day 2 by taking Miami offensive lineman Brandon Linder, which was another step in the right direction on that side of the ball.
Houston started the draft by taking the most talented player available in South Carolina defensive end Jadeveon Clowney with the No. 1 overall pick. So they were going to get a strong overall grade for the first three rounds, regardless of their other picks. However, the Texans still did a nice job on Day 2 as well.
The pick that stands out most from the draft's second day is actually the final one of the three they made. They were able to grab Notre Dame defensive tackle Louis Nix, a borderline first-round talent, deep in the third round.
Brian T. Smith of the Houston Chronicle passed along Nix's reaction to the slide. "I wasn't expecting anything to happen," Nix said. "I'm happy about it and pretty excited. I fell. Some people had me first (round). But who cares? I got drafted."
Between Clowney, Nix and J.J. Watt, the Texans have put together a front seven that is capable of wreaking major havoc. They also made a couple solid depth selections in UCLA offensive guard Xavier Su'a Filo and Iowa tight end C.J. Fiedorowicz, who should both see plenty of snaps in their rookie season.
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