Which team improved the most through the 2014 NFL draft?
The answer to that question may not come for quite some time, as we wait to see exactly how each prospect will impact his respective team.
It's never too early to speculate, however.
Each franchise entered the draft in an effort to improve its roster for years to come. Certainly, every team has improved, but some may have more than others.
Due to schematic fits of new players, the position in which they were drafted and how well team needs were addressed, we can begin to assign grades for each franchise's draft haul.
Let's take a look at the draft grades for every NFL team, as well as the best selection made by each one.
2014 NFL Draft Grades and Best Selections
|2014 NFL Draft Grades and Best Selections|
|Arizona Cardinals||7||Deone Bucannon||B|
|Atlanta Falcons||9||Ra'Shede Hageman||B+|
|Baltimore Ravens||9||C.J. Mosley||B+|
|Buffalo Bills||7||Sammy Watkins||B|
|Carolina Panthers||6||Kony Ealy||C|
|Chicago Bears||8||Kyle Fuller||C|
|Cincinnati Bengals||8||Darqueze Dennard||C+|
|Cleveland Browns||6||Johnny Manziel||A|
|Dallas Cowboys||9||Zack Martin||C-|
|Denver Broncos||6||Bradley Roby||B|
|Detroit Lions||8||Eric Ebron||C+|
|Green Bay Packers||9||Ha Ha Clinton-Dix||B-|
|Houston Texans||10||Jadeveon Clowney||A|
|Indianapolis Colts||5||Donte Moncrief||C|
|Jacksonville Jaguars||9||Marqise Lee||A-|
|Kansas City Chiefs||6||De'Anthony Thomas||C-|
|Miami Dolphins||8||Jarvis Landry||C-|
|Minnesota Vikings||10||Teddy Bridgewater||B+|
|New England Patriots||9||Cameron Fleming||D+|
|New Orleans Saints||6||Brandin Cooks||B-|
|New York Giants||7||Odell Beckham Jr.||B|
|New York Jets||12||Jace Amaro||B+|
|Oakland Raiders||8||Khalil Mack||A-|
|Philadelphia Eagles||7||Jordan Matthews||D+|
|Pittsburgh Steelers||9||Ryan Shazier||B-|
|San Diego Chargers||6||Jason Verrett||C|
|San Francisco 49ers||12||Marcus Martin||C+|
|Seattle Seahawks||9||Kevin Norwood||D+|
|St. Louis Rams||11||Aaron Donald||A|
|Tampa Bay Buccaneers||6||Mike Evans||B-|
|Tennessee Titans||6||Bishop Sankey||B|
|Washington Redskins||8||Morgan Moses||C|
|Sean O'Donnell's Grades|
New York Jets
Best Selection: Jace Amaro, TE, Texas Tech (Round 2)
Draft Grade: B+
The Jets had one of the draft's better hauls, addressing plenty of team needs and obtaining some great value across the board.
In Round 1, New York selected Calvin Pryor. This Rex Ryan-led team needed some physicality on the defensive side of the ball, and Pryor is the perfect guy for the job.
An aggressive defender, Pryor doesn't shy away from contact and is a sure tackler. He has a high motor and doesn't fail to fly all over the field to make plays. He's not exceptionally fast, but he does have decent coverage skills on the back end.
The Round 2 selection of Amaro was absolutely the team's best decision. With the Jets' quarterback situation up in the air, this team needed a reliable pass-catcher for whoever starts the season under center.
Amaro is comfortable flexed out wide, and his big frame and quickness will give either Geno Smith or Michael Vick a great weapon up the seam and in the red zone.
According to a tweet from Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News, Ryan is very excited about having Amaro in the fold:
Dexter McDougle's selection in the third round helped a weak cornerback corps. He's lightning fast but may need a bit of time to translate his skill set to the NFL.
Best Selection: Jordan Matthews, WR, Vanderbilt (Round 2)
Draft Grade: D+
The Eagles were all over the place during the draft. Chip Kelly and Co. made some questionable decisions throughout the process, and while they filled certain needs, others went completely unaddressed.
Selecting Marcus Smith in the first round filled a need with an edge-rusher; however, the Eagles whiffed on some other talent that may have been more beneficial.
Safety is still a huge need for this team, and both Deone Bucannon and Jimmie Ward were available at No. 26 overall. If the Eagles stood pat with their No. 22 pick, the team could have also addressed cornerback with Darqueze Dennard, Jason Verrett or Bradley Roby.
In the second round, Philadelphia made up for lost ground with a nice selection of Matthews.
At 6'3" and 212 pounds, Matthews is a big-bodied receiver who has reliable hands and can make tough catches over the middle. With Jeremy Maclin and Riley Cooper on the outside, Matthews will fill an immediate need in the slot.
According to a tweet from Sheil Kapadia, Matthews really stood out to the Eagles due to his high football intelligence:
The injury concerns also continue with Maclin, and if he should suffer another setback, Matthews' size will allow him to fill Maclin's spot on the outside.
In the fourth round, Philadelphia finally addressed the secondary. Although Jaylen Watkins is a versatile defensive back who can play corner and safety, the team simply waited too long to address this need.
St. Louis Rams
Best Selection: Aaron Donald, DT, Pittsburgh (Round 1)
Draft Grade: A
The Rams absolutely killed this year's draft.
At No. 2 overall, the team made an excellent selection of Greg Robinson. The offensive tackle is an elite prospect who will anchor the Rams' line for the long haul. With some uncertainty at the quarterback position—Sam Bradford's health remains a big concern—Robinson will boost the team's pass protection in a big way.
Possibly the Rams' best pick, Donald was an absolute steal at No. 13 overall.
With a defensive line consisting of Robert Quinn, Chris Long and Michael Brockers, Donald's presence as the three technique arguably makes this unit the NFL's best. Quarterbacks in the NFC West may be in some trouble this season.
Why is that? Take a look at this tweet from ESPN Stats & Info:
Furthering a great haul, Lamarcus Joyner fills a need in the secondary. He's a do-it-all player, as Joyner can play outside corner, slot corner and safety. He doesn't have great size at 5'8", but he's absolutely explosive.
Tre Mason, the speedy Auburn product, was a great pick in the third round. Pairing him with Zac Stacy in the backfield makes for a lightning-fast one-two punch. Mason will certainly help in the special teams department as well.
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