Grading Every NFL Team's 2019 Draft Haul
We're coming up on the fourth season for 2019 NFL draftees, which means teams had to make big decisions on fifth-year options for first-rounders and consider extensions for high-performance players on four-year deals.
In an evaluation of every team's 2019 draft haul, we took a look at production, option-year decisions and long-term outlook.
Of course, players with accolades heavily swayed our grades. On the flip side, we penalized teams that whiffed on early selections, especially if the front office has already waived a player it picked within the first three rounds. Also, take note of the emphasis on premium vs. non-premium positions. In other words, a productive edge-rusher carries more weight than a decent guard.
Lastly, size does matter. Smaller draft classes with more contributors will earn higher grades than bigger groups with fewer playmakers or starters.
· Round 1, Pick No. 1 overall: Kyler Murray, QB, Oklahoma
· Round 2, Pick No. 33 overall: Byron Murphy Jr., CB, Washington
· Round 2, Pick No. 62 overall: Andy Isabella, WR, Massachusetts
· Round 3, Pick No. 65 overall: Zach Allen, DE, Boston College
· Round 4, Pick No. 103 overall: Hakeem Butler, WR, Iowa State
· Round 5, Pick No. 139 overall: Deionte Thompson, S, Alabama
· Round 6, Pick No. 174 overall: Keesean Johnson, WR, Fresno State
· Round 6, Pick No. 179 overall: Lamont Gaillard, C, Georgia
· Round 7, Pick No. 248 overall: Joshua Miles, OT, Morgan State
· Round 7, Pick No. 249 overall: Michael Dogbe, DE, Temple
· Round 7, Pick No. 254 overall: Caleb Wilson, TE, UCLA
The Arizona Cardinals had a high volume of 2019 selections (11), and they added starters with three of their first four picks. Though the front office didn't find a Day 3 contributor, it changed the direction of the franchise with this class.
Kyler Murray won Offensive Rookie of the Year and earned Pro Bowl nods for the last two seasons, leading the Cardinals to a playoff appearance in 2021. Arizona has improved its win total every year with him under center (five, eight and 11 in 2019, 2020 and 2021 respectively). Assuming the team signs him to a long-term extension, no one can argue against general manager Steve Keim's decision to move on from quarterback Josh Rosen after one term.
Byron Murphy Jr. has steadily improved since his rookie campaign. Every year, he's allowed a lower completion rate and passer rating in coverage. In 2021, the Washington product recorded career highs in pass breakups (12) and interceptions (four).
Last year, Zach Allen moved into a starting role and had his best pro campaign, logging 48 tackles, five for loss, four sacks, 18 pressures, four pass breakups and an interception. With another solid term, he could become a hot commodity on the 2023 free-agent market if the Cardinals don't re-sign him.
According to NFL Network's Mike Garafolo, Arizona has shopped Andy Isabella, which may be an indication that he's on the roster bubble this summer. Even if the former second-rounder doesn't make the 53-man roster, his disappointing three-year run isn't enough to drop the Cardinals' overall grade below an A. They found a franchise player and two potential roster keepers.
· Round 1, Pick No. 14 overall: Chris Lindstrom, G, Boston College
· Round 1, Pick No. 31 overall: Kaleb McGary, OT, Washington
· Round 4, Pick No. 111 overall: Kendall Sheffield, CB, Ohio State
· Round 4, Pick No. 135 overall: John Cominsky, DE, Charleston
· Round 5, Pick No. 152 overall: Qadree Ollison, RB, Pittsburgh
· Round 5, Pick No. 172 overall: Jordan Miller, CB, Washington
· Round 6, Pick No. 203 overall: Marcus Green, WR, UL Monroe
The Atlanta Falcons can say they picked up a starting-caliber guard with a nonchalant shoulder shrug. Other than that, the previous regime (under former general manager Thomas Dimitroff) didn't bring in a lot of production or quality with this group.
The Falcons exercised Chris Lindstrom's fifth-year option, and he'll likely stick around as a pillar on their offensive line.
On the flip side, Atlanta didn't pick up the fifth-year option for Kaleb McGary's rookie deal. He allowed nine sacks through 986 snaps last year, per Pro Football Focus. Barring a Pro Bowl-level performance in 2022, expect him to play elsewhere for the 2023 season.
The Falcons didn't have any Day 2 picks, but they waived both of their fourth-rounders in May.
Jordan Miller played 24 defensive snaps in Atlanta, Marcus Green hasn't appeared in a regular-season game and Qadree Ollison has just 44 carries for 158 rushing yards and five touchdowns in 19 outings.
You can flush this class after pick No. 14.
· Round 1, Pick No. 25 overall: Marquise Brown, WR, Oklahoma
· Round 3, Pick No. 85 overall: Jaylon Ferguson, DE-OLB, Louisiana Tech
· Round 3, Pick No. 93 overall: Miles Boykin, WR, Notre Dame
· Round 4, Pick No. 113 overall: Justice Hill, RB, Oklahoma State
· Round 4, Pick No. 123 overall: Ben Powers, OG, Oklahoma
· Round 4, Pick No. 127 overall: Iman Marshall, CB, USC
· Round 5, Pick No. 160 overall: Daylon Mack, DT, Texas A&M
· Round 6, Pick No. 197 overall: Trace McSorley, QB, Penn State
The Baltimore Ravens' grade doesn't account for Jaylon Ferguson, who passed away in June before his fourth season with the team.
On Day 1 of the 2022 draft, the Ravens traded their most productive player from the class, sending Marquise Brown to the Arizona Cardinals in exchange for a first-round pick. Last year, he logged career highs in catches (91) and receiving yards (1,008).
Ben Powers is the only player in the group who remains on the roster with a chance to start in the upcoming campaign. For the 2021 term, he opened 12 out of 13 contests with the first unit, allowing three sacks and committing three penalties in 844 snaps, per Pro Football Focus.
In April, Baltimore released Miles Boykin, who caught 33 passes for 470 yards and seven touchdowns through 40 contests (24 starts) with the team. At best, Justice Hill is the No. 3 running back on the depth chart behind J.K. Dobbins and Gus Edwards, but eighth-year pro Mike Davis may bump him down to the fourth spot.
Aside from Brown, who's no longer in the squad, this group provided limited impact in three seasons. No one stands out as a long-term asset.
· Round 1, Pick No. 9 overall: Ed Oliver, DT, Houston
· Round 2, Pick No. 38 overall: Cody Ford, OT, Oklahoma
· Round 3, Pick No. 74 overall: Devin Singletary, RB, Florida Atlantic
· Round 3, Pick No. 96 overall: Dawson Knox, TE, Ole Miss
· Round 5, Pick No. 147 overall: Vosean Joseph, LB, Florida
· Round 6, Pick No. 181 overall: Jaquan Johnson, S, Miami
· Round 7, Pick No. 225 overall: Darryl Johnson Jr., OLB, NC A&T
· Round 7, Pick No. 228 overall: Tommy Sweeney, TE, Boston College
The Buffalo Bills found three starters and perhaps some depth with this group.
Ed Oliver, Devin Singletary and Dawson Knox have progressed over the last three years; they all had a strong showing in 2021.
Buffalo selected running back James Cook in the second round of the 2022 draft, but according to The Athletic's Joe Buscaglia, the team "remains firmly behind Singletary" as a key player out of the backfield. He's coming off his best year, accumulating 1,098 yards and eight touchdowns from scrimmage. The fourth-year pro must work on his ball security though. Fortunately for him, he didn't lose any of his five fumbles last year.
Last season, Knox broke out in a pass-catching role, recording 49 receptions for 587 yards and nine touchdowns. He finished second on the team in scores.
Cody Ford hasn't played up to second-round expectations. He's struggled at right tackle and guard and probably finds himself in a battle with Greg Van Roten for primary backup duties on the interior while Ike Boettger recovers from a ruptured Achilles.
Jaquan Johnson is a core special teamer, and Tommy Sweeney remains on the roster as a backup tight end.
This group's early production played a big factor in the overall grade.
· Round 1, Pick No. 16 overall: Brian Burns, OLB, Florida State
· Round 2, Pick No. 37 overall: Greg Little, OT, Ole Miss
· Round 3, Pick No. 100 overall: Will Grier, QB West Virginia
· Round 4, Pick No. 115 overall: Christian Miller, OLB, Alabama
· Round 5, Pick No. 154 overall: Jordan Scarlett, RB, Florida
· Round 6, Pick No. 212 overall: Dennis Daley, OT, South Carolina
· Round 7, Pick No. 237 overall: Terry Godwin, WR, Georgia
The Carolina Panthers' 2019 class runs low on early return and overall production. Brian Burns is the only player within this group who's made an impact over the last three seasons.
Coming off a Pro Bowl campaign with 50 tackles, 13 for loss, nine sacks and 31 pressures, Burns could develop into an All-Pro player in the near future. He's a potential roster cornerstone for the defense.
As a pro, Greg Little has battled injuries. He played 14 games (six starts) in Carolina before the team traded him to the Miami Dolphins in August of 2021. Will Grier has zero touchdown passes and four interceptions on his resume. The Panthers waived Christian Miller and Jordan Scarlett before their third and second campaigns, respectively.
Dennis Daley had a shot to claim a spot with the first unit, but he struggled in nine starts during his rookie year and last season. According to Pro Football Focus, the former sixth-rounder allowed three sacks and committed nine penalties through 573 snaps in 2021.
Burns' high level of play at a premium position saves the Panthers from an F.
· Round 3, Pick No. 73 overall: David Montgomery, RB, Iowa State
· Round 4, Pick No. 126 overall: Riley Ridley, WR, Georgia
· Round 6, Pick No. 205 overall: Duke Shelley, CB, Kansas State
· Round 7, Pick No. 222 overall: Kerrith Whyte Jr., RB, Florida Atlantic
· Round 7, Pick No. 238 overall: Stephen Denmark, CB, Valdosta State
The Chicago Bears didn't have a first- or second-round selection because of a trade to move up for wideout Anthony Miller during the 2018 draft and a transaction to acquire Khalil Mack.
With only one pick in the top 125, the Bears still landed a quality starter in David Montgomery, who's become their workhorse ball-carrier with at least 267 touches for each of his three seasons. He's accumulated 3,732 yards and 24 touchdowns from scrimmage in 44 games (35 starts).
After Montgomery, Chicago didn't hit on any of its other selections.
Riley Ridley caught 10 passes for 108 yards in two seasons with the team. Over the last two years, Duke Shelley saw some action in the slot, logging 37 tackles and four pass breakups, but he could fall behind newcomer Tavon Young under new head coach Matt Eberflus and his staff.
The Bears didn't have much to work with here, but they deserve some credit for picking up a running back who's been a bright spot for a bottom-tier offense.
· Round 1, Pick No. 11 overall: Jonah Williams, OL, Alabama
· Round 2, Pick No. 52 overall: Drew Sample, TE, Washington
· Round 3, Pick No. 72 overall: Germaine Pratt, OLB, NC State
· Round 4, Pick No. 104 overall: Ryan Finley, QB, North Carolina State
· Round 4, Pick No. 125 overall: Renell Wren, DT, Arizona State
· Round 4, Pick No. 136 overall: Michael Jordan, C-G, Ohio State
· Round 6, Pick No. 182 overall: Trayveon Williams, RB, Texas A&M
· Round 6, Pick No. 210 overall: Deshaun Davis, LB, Auburn
· Round 6, Pick No. 211 overall: Rodney Anderson, RB, Oklahoma
· Round 7, Pick No. 223 overall: Jordan Brown, CB, South Dakota State
The Cincinnati Bengals have two consistent contributors in this class, but they're both low-end starters.
The Bengals exercised the fifth-year option on Jonah Williams' contract even though he struggled in pass protection last season, allowing eight sacks in 1,044 snaps, per Pro Football Focus.
Through 47 outings (39 starts), Germaine Pratt has racked up a ton of tackles (256) and occasionally found his way into the opponent's backfield with 14 tackles for loss. However, he's not a reliable defender in pass coverage, allowing a passer rating of at least 101.4 for each of his three campaigns.
Between 2019 and 2020, Michael Jordan made 19 starts, mostly at left guard, but he performed at a below-average level. The club waived him before the 2021 campaign.
In 2020, as a starter for 13 out of 16 contests, Drew Sample had his best season, recording 40 catches for 349 yards and a touchdown. Last year, he fell behind C.J. Uzomah on the depth chart. This year, the former second-rounder will probably back up Hayden Hurst, who's been more productive in his career.
Ryan Finley made four spot starts in his first two years, throwing for 638 yards, three touchdowns and four interceptions in eight outings. Cincinnati traded him to the Houston Texans last offseason.
Unless Williams and Pratt strengthen their glaring weakness, this group won't have much long-term value.
· Round 2, Pick No. 46 overall: Greedy Williams, CB, LSU
· Round 3, Pick No. 80 overall: Sione Takitaki, OLB, BYU
· Round 4, Pick No. 119 overall: Sheldrick Redwine, S, Miami
· Round 5, Pick No. 155 overall: Mack Wilson, LB, Alabama
· Round 5, Pick No. 170 overall: Austin Seibert, K, Oklahoma
· Round 6, Pick No. 189 overall: Drew Forbes, OL, SE Missouri State
· Round 7, Pick No. 221 overall: Donnie Lewis Jr., CB, Tulane
The Cleveland Browns went through a regime shift after the 2019 season, hiring general manager Andrew Berry to replace John Dorsey, which may have impacted the growth of players in this class.
Greedy Williams missed the entire 2020 campaign because of a shoulder injury and bounced back last year, logging 10 pass breakups and two interceptions while allowing a 55.2 percent completion rate and 74 passer rating in coverage. With that said, he only played 56 percent of the defensive snaps.
Between 2020 and 2021, Sione Takitaki saw his defensive snap count drop from 43 to 28 percent. He'll likely serve as a backup behind 2021 second-round linebacker Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah.
In March, the front office traded Mack Wilson to the New England Patriots. He recorded 163 tackles, five for loss, nine pass breakups, a sack and an interception in 43 contests (28 starts) with the Browns.
As a rookie, Austin Seibert served as Cleveland's placekicker, but the team waived him early in the 2020 term.
Williams made some progress last season but not enough to significantly boost the Browns' grade.
· Round 2, Pick No. 58 overall: Trysten Hill, DT, UCF
· Round 3, Pick No. 90 overall: Connor McGovern, G, Penn State
· Round 4, Pick No. 128 overall: Tony Pollard, RB, Memphis
· Round 5, Pick No. 158 overall: Michael Jackson, CB, Miami
· Round 5, Pick No. 165 overall: Joe Jackson, DE, Miami
· Round 6, Pick No. 213 overall: Donovan Wilson, S, Texas A&M
· Round 7, Pick No. 218 overall: Mike Weber, RB, Ohio State
· Round 7, Pick No. 241 overall: Jalen Jelks, DE, Oregon
The Dallas Cowboys don't have a probable starter for the 2022 season from this draft haul.
Trysten Hill's spotty availability has impacted his development. He's appeared in only 18 games (five starts), logging 27 tackles, two for loss and a half sack.
Connor McGovern has been in and out of the first unit with 14 starts in 30 contests. He'll battle with rookie first-rounder Tyler Smith for the vacancy at left guard following Connor Williams' departure to the Miami Dolphins.
Tony Pollard has spelled star running back Ezekiel Elliott, though he's seen a steady increase in his touches every year. In 2021, he logged a career-high 1,056 yards and two touchdowns from scrimmage.
In 2020, as primarily a starter, Donovan Wilson recorded 71 tackles, two for loss, 3.5 sacks, three pass breakups, two interceptions, three forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries, but he missed eight games last year. He may not reclaim his starting job with safeties Malik Hooker and Jayron Kearse, who had his best pro campaign in 2021, on the roster with new deals.
The Cowboys may have some depth with this group. Pollard probably isn't going to break out until the team moves on from Elliott, though.
· Round 1, Pick No. 20 overall: Noah Fant, TE, Iowa
· Round 2, Pick No. 41 overall: Dalton Risner, G/C, Kansas State
· Round 2, Pick No. 42 overall: Drew Lock, QB, Missouri
· Round 3, Pick No. 71 overall: Dre'Mont Jones, DT, Ohio State
· Round 5, Pick No. 156 overall: Justin Hollins, LB, Oregon
· Round 6, Pick No. 187 overall: Juwann Winfree, WR, Colorado
The Denver Broncos traded arguably their best pick from this class, but multiple players made notable contributions over the last three years.
Denver dealt Noah Fant and Drew Lock to the Seattle Seahawks in the Russell Wilson trade. The former seemed well on his way to a productive career with the team, catching 170 passes for 1,905 yards and 10 touchdowns through three seasons. The latter lost a quarterback battle to Teddy Bridgewater last offseason.
Dre'Mont Jones has carved out a rotational role on the defensive line, logging 86 tackles, 19 for loss, 15.5 sacks, 43 pressures, six pass breakups and an interception in 43 games (16 starts). He may have a breakout year with the departure of Shelby Harris, whom the team included in the Wilson deal.
In 2021, Dalton Risner had some lapses in pass protection, allowing four sacks, per Pro Football Focus, but overall, he's a decent starting left guard. However, his future has some uncertainty because the incoming coaching staff may prefer Graham Glasgow and Quinn Meinerz at the interior spots for the long term.
Lock's flop as a starter drops the Broncos' grade, but this group features a couple of starters and an interior defensive lineman with intriguing upside.
· Round 1, Pick No. 8 overall: T.J. Hockenson, TE, Iowa
· Round 2, Pick No. 43 overall: Jahlani Tavai, LB, Hawaii
· Round 3, Pick No. 81 overall: Will Harris, DB, Boston College
· Round 4, Pick No. 117 overall: Austin Bryant, DE, Clemson
· Round 5, Pick No. 146 overall: Amani Oruwariye, CB, Penn State
· Round 6, Pick No. 184 overall: Travis Fulgham, WR, Old Dominion
· Round 6, Pick No. 186 overall: Ty Johnson, RB, Maryland
· Round 7, Pick No. 224 overall: Isaac Nauta, TE, Georgia
· Round 7, Pick No. 229 overall: P.J. Johnson, DT, Arizona
In 2019, the Detroit Lions added a high-level pass-catching tight end and immediate help for their secondary.
T.J. Hockenson made the 2020 Pro Bowl roster with 67 receptions for 723 yards and six touchdowns. Last year, he missed five games, but the Iowa product still finished third on the team in receptions (61) and second in receiving yards (583) with four touchdowns.
Will Harris and Amani Oruwariye have become starters in the secondary. The former isn't a splashy playmaker, with just eight pass breakups and zero interceptions in 49 games (28 starts), but the latter has provided ball production on the boundary.
Oruwariye had a breakout 2021 campaign, leading the Lions in pass breakups (11) and interceptions (six). He's a potential middle-round gem who could command a sizable deal on the free-agent market next offseason if the team doesn't re-sign him.
In August 2021, Detroit's current regime waived Jahlani Tavai, who logged 116 tackles, seven for loss and two sacks under the previous coaching staff.
Neither Travis Fulgham nor Ty Johnson made it through the 2020 campaign with the Lions, but they did contribute in backup roles with the Philadelphia Eagles and New York Jets, respectively, after their time in Detroit.
The Lions should feel good about this group, which features three starters, including a Pro Bowler.
Green Bay Packers
· Round 1, Pick No. 12 overall: Rashan Gary, DE, Michigan
· Round 1, Pick No. 21 overall: Darnell Savage, S, Maryland
· Round 2, Pick No. 44 overall: Elgton Jenkins, G/C, Mississippi State
· Round 3, Pick No. 75 overall: Jace Sternberger, TE, Texas A&M
· Round 5, Pick No. 150 overall: Kingsley Keke, DT, Texas A&M
· Round 6, Pick No. 185 overall: Ka'dar Hollman, CB, Toledo
· Round 6, Pick No. 194 overall: Dexter Williams, RB, Notre Dame
· Round 7, Pick No. 226 overall: Ty Summers, ILB, TCU
The Green Bay Packers have a top-heavy 2019 class, and they added some depth on Day 3.
Rashan Gary played behind edge-rushers Preston Smith and Za'Darius Smith for two seasons, so it took him a while to break out in a pass-rushing role. Nonetheless, the Packers exercised the fifth-year option in his rookie contract after he led the team in sacks (9.5) and pressures (47) last season.
Through his first two campaigns, Darnell Savage filled holes in the Packers' secondary, logging 17 pass breakups and six interceptions. However, he became a liability in some situations last year, allowing eight touchdowns, a 64.9 percent completion rate and a 117.4 passer rating. Because of his performances between 2019 and 2020, he gets the benefit of the doubt, but don't expect the Packers to re-sign him if they see a repeat of the 2021 term.
Elgton Jenkins has played every position except center on the offensive line, and he earned a Pro Bowl nod in 2020. The versatile lineman will shore up the Packers' five-man unit in the trenches once he fully recovers from a torn ACL.
With the Arizona Cardinals, Kingsley Keke could earn a new deal for a backup role beyond the 2022 term. Over the last two years in Green Bay, he's recorded 44 tackles, four for loss, 6.5 sacks, 19 pressures, five pass breakups and a couple of forced fumbles.
The Packers may have found long-term assets for their defense and a perennial Pro Bowler for their offensive line with this group.
· Round 1, Pick No. 23 overall: Tytus Howard, OT, Alabama State
· Round 2, Pick No. 54 overall: Lonnie Johnson, CB, Kentucky
· Round 2, Pick No. 55 overall: Max Scharping, OT, Northern Illinois
· Round 3, Pick No. 86 overall: Kahale Warring, TE, San Diego State
· Round 5, Pick No. 161 overall: Charles Omenihu, DE, Texas
· Round 6, Pick No. 195 overall: Xavier Crawford, CB, Central Michigan
· Round 7, Pick No. 220 overall: Cullen Gillaspia, FB, Texas A&M
The Houston Texans' 2019 class has gone through turnover, and the remaining players on the roster will play for their third head coach in the upcoming season. Still, the club may have picked up a couple of serviceable starting offensive linemen from this group.
Tytus Howard has started at both tackle positions and left guard. Last year, he took all his snaps on the left side of the line and allowed two sacks but committed eight penalties, per Pro Football Focus. Apparently, the Texans believe in him as a long-term asset; they exercised the fifth-year option on his rookie deal.
Like Howard, Max Scharping has moved across the offensive line, playing both guard positions, though he's been in and out of the starting lineup over the last two years. He's heading into a crucial contract term after finishing the previous campaign in a reserve role.
In May, the Texans traded Lonnie Johnson, who moved from boundary cornerback to safety in his second season. On one hand, he improved in passer rating allowed every year, but the versatile defensive back gave up an alarming 17.3 yards per completion in 2021. Johnson's three-year run in Houston looks like a mixed bag.
In November 2021, Houston dealt Charles Omenihu to the San Francisco 49ers. Through his first two seasons, he had some bright moments, logging 30 tackles, seven for loss, seven sacks, 34 pressures and four pass breakups, but he didn't reach his full potential.
The shift between former general manager and head coach Bill O'Brien to current front-office executive Nick Caserio may have factored into the trades that involved Johnson and Omenihu. Scharping may not return to the first unit with the addition of rookie first-round guard Kenyon Green and eighth-year guard A.J. Cann. Howard gives this class hope in long-term value.
· Round 2, Pick No. 34 overall: Rock Ya-Sin, CB, Temple
· Round 2, Pick No. 49 overall: Ben Banogu, DE, TCU
· Round 2, Pick No. 59 overall: Parris Campbell, WR, Ohio State
· Round 3, Pick No. 89 overall: Bobby Okereke, LB, Stanford
· Round 4, Pick No. 109 overall: Khari Willis, S, Michigan State
· Round 5, Pick No. 144 overall: Marvell Tell III, S, USC
· Round 5, Pick No. 164 overall: E.J. Speed, LB, Tarleton State
· Round 6, Pick No. 199 overall: Gerri Green, DE, Mississippi State
· Round 7, Pick No. 240 overall: Jackson Barton, OT, Utah
· Round 7, Pick No. 246 overall: Javon Patterson, C, Ole Miss
The Indianapolis Colts' top three picks battled different issues that have hindered their development. Former defensive coordinator Matt Eberflus and his staff did see players in the class become reliable starters, though.
Before the Colts traded Rock Ya-Sin to the Las Vegas Raiders in March, he experienced his ups and downs through three campaigns. The Temple product cut down on his penalties, but he doesn't have much ball production, recording two interceptions and 20 pass breakups in 41 contests (29 starts).
Going into training camp, Ben Banogu should be on the roster bubble. He hasn't registered a sack or tackle for loss since his rookie term. On top of that, the second-rounder has seen a decline in snap count every year in the league.
Parris Campbell hasn't been able to shake the injury bug, suiting up for just 15 games in three seasons. He's hauled in 34 passes for 360 yards and two touchdowns in limited action, but general manager Chris Ballard isn't ready to give up on him. The Ohio State product may have one more year to prove he can stay healthy and produce in the passing attack.
Through three campaigns, Bobby Okereke and Khari Willis have started in a majority of their appearances, though the latter retired in June. Following his best year with 132 tackles, three for loss, a sack, four pass breakups and two interceptions, the former should remain a starter at linebacker under new defensive coordinator Gus Bradley.
Barring a breakout year for Campbell, the Colts' trio of second-round picks look like a disappointment, which significantly hurts their overall grade.
· Round 1, Pick No. 7 overall: Josh Allen, OLB, Kentucky
· Round 2, Pick No. 35 overall: Jawaan Taylor, OT, Florida
· Round 3, Pick No. 69 overall: Josh Oliver, TE, San Jose State
· Round 3, Pick No. 98 overall: Quincy Williams, LB, Murray State
· Round 5, Pick No. 140 overall: Ryquell Armstead, RB, Temple
· Round 6, Pick No. 178 overall: Gardner Minshew, QB, Washington State
· Round 7, Pick No. 235 overall: Dontavius Russell, DT, Auburn
The Jacksonville Jaguars saw three players make an immediate impact, and one of them has shown high-level playmaking ability at a premium position.
As a rookie Pro Bowler, Josh Allen earned a vote for Defensive Rookie of the Year with 44 tackles, 11 for loss, 10.5 sacks and 39 pressures. In 2020, he missed eight games but rebounded with 71 tackles, 12 for loss, 7.5 sacks and 23 pressures last season. He's a long-term asset at a key position.
Jawaan Taylor hasn't missed a game, starting in all of his 49 appearances, but according to ESPN's Michael DiRocco, he might have to beat out 2021 second-rounder Walker Little in a training camp battle for the starting job at right tackle. Per Pro Football Focus, Taylor allowed six sacks last year. Because of his pass-protection issues, he's a low-end starter.
In 2019, Gardner Minshew took over for an injured Nick Foles and extended his time under center into the following campaign. With the Jaguars, he threw for 5,530 yards, 37 touchdowns and 11 interceptions with a 62.9 percent completion rate. Last offseason, Jacksonville traded him to the Philadelphia Eagles months after the team selected Trevor Lawrence with the No. 1 overall pick.
The Jaguars have a consistent playmaker in Allen, and Minshew can be a serviceable starter with another opportunity elsewhere, but Taylor may not get another deal in Jacksonville with Little in competition for his starting spot.
Kansas City Chiefs
· Round 2, Pick No. 56 overall: Mecole Hardman, WR, Georgia
· Round 2, Pick No. 63 overall: Juan Thornhill, S, Virginia
· Round 3, Pick No. 84 overall: Khalen Saunders, DT, Western Illinois
· Round 6, Pick No. 201 overall: Rashad Fenton, CB, South Carolina
· Round 6, Pick No. 214 overall: Darwin Thompson, RB, Utah State
· Round 6, Pick No. 216 overall: Nick Allegretti, C, Illinois
The Kansas City Chiefs didn't land a star in this class, but they added multiple starters and quality depth without a first-round pick.
Mecole Hardman and Juan Thornhill can raise their free-agent market value for the 2023 offseason with strong campaigns in starting roles. The former should see more targets following the departure of All-Pro wideout Tyreek Hill. The latter will have a chance to match or top an impressive rookie term in which he allowed a 46.4 percent completion rate and a 43.0 passer rating in coverage.
Rashad Fenton can line up on the boundary or in the slot, which likely hinges upon how the coaching staff employs rookie first-rounder Trent McDuffie. Last year, he recorded seven pass breakups while permitting 8.7 yards per completion, a 68.5 percent completion rate and an 84.0 passer rating. As a sixth-round pick with 11 starts in 42 contests, he's an under-the-radar defender in the Chiefs secondary.
Khalen Saunders and Nick Allegretti will likely provide depth on the defensive and offensive lines, respectively. The latter filled in adequately as a starting left guard for nine out of 16 outings through the 2020 campaign.
Hardman, Thornhill and Fenton can stick around for the long term. They've all had solid stretches of production over the last three years.
Las Vegas Raiders
· Round 1, Pick No. 4 overall: Clelin Ferrell, DE, Clemson
· Round 1, Pick No. 24 overall: Josh Jacobs, RB, Alabama
· Round 1, Pick No. 27 overall: Johnathan Abram, S, Mississippi State
· Round 2, Pick No. 40 overall: Trayvon Mullen, CB, Clemson
· Round 4, Pick No. 106 overall: Maxx Crosby, DE, Eastern Michigan
· Round 4, Pick No. 129: Isaiah Johnson, CB, Houston
· Round 4, Pick No. 137 overall: Foster Moreau, TE, LSU
· Round 5, Pick No. 149: Hunter Renfrow, WR, Clemson
· Round 7, Pick No. 230 overall: Quinton Bell, DE, Prairie View A&M
We can view the Las Vegas Raiders' class in two ways. On one hand, the previous regime led by Mike Mayock and Jon Gruden failed to get the best value out of their first-round picks. The team didn't pick up the fifth-year option for any of its Day 1 selections. Yet they added two or maybe three roster cornerstones between Rounds 2 and 5.
Clelin Ferrell has regressed through three terms. As a rookie, under former defensive coordinator Paul Guenther, he started in 15 games, but the Clemson product fell into a backup role while Gus Bradley called the shots for the Raiders defense last year. Now, he's clinging to a back-end roster spot with new defensive coordinator Patrick Graham set to call plays in 2022.
Josh Jacobs has racked up 3,839 yards and 28 touchdowns from scrimmage, but new head coach and play-caller Josh McDaniels may cut back on the Pro Bowl ball-carrier's role with a backfield committee. The team selected Zamir White in the fourth round of the 2022 draft and signed Brandon Bolden, and Kenyan Drake remains on the roster.
Johnathan Abram is a tackling machine who's undergone two shoulder surgeries since 2019 and struggles in coverage, allowing a passer rating of at least 109.7 for all three of his seasons.
Trayvon Mullen enters a possible make-or-break year for his future with the Raiders. He led the team in pass breakups for the 2019 and 2020 campaigns but missed 12 contests because of a foot/toe injury last season. The fourth-year pro underwent surgery in May, and he's on the physically unable to perform list.
The Raiders found roster keepers in Maxx Crosby and Hunter Renfrow. They're both Pro Bowlers who signed four- and two-year extensions, respectively, this offseason.
Foster Moreau has provided some depth with 58 catches for 687 yards and 10 touchdowns. He'll continue to serve as Darren Waller's backup.
We cannot excuse the Raiders' poor value with their top three picks, but Crosby has star power and Renfrow has become one of the league's top slot receivers.
Los Angeles Chargers
· Round 1, Pick No. 28 overall: Jerry Tillery, DT, Notre Dame
· Round 2, Pick No. 60 overall: Nasir Adderley, CB, Delaware
· Round 3, Pick No. 91 overall: Trey Pipkins, OT, Sioux Falls
· Round 4, Pick No. 130 overall: Drue Tranquill, ILB, Notre Dame
· Round 5, Pick No. 166 overall: Easton Stick, QB, North Dakota State
· Round 6, Pick No. 200 overall: Emeke Egbule, DE, Houston
· Round 7, Pick No. 242 overall: Cortez Broughton, DT, Cincinnati
The Los Angeles Chargers' 2019 class isn't a complete wash, but multiple players haven't performed up to their draft pedigrees.
In 47 games (29 starts), Jerry Tillery has registered 98 tackles, 12 for loss, 9.5 sacks and 46 pressures, but he'll have to play at a higher level to extend his future with the team. The front office declined to pick up the fifth-year option in his rookie deal. Though his numbers have trended in the right direction, he's not reliable in run support, missing 23.1 and 13.6 percent of his tackles for the 2020 and 2021 seasons, correspondingly.
In 2021, Nasir Adderley recorded a career-high 99 tackles, three for loss, but he's missed 14.8 and 13.9 percent of his tackles for the 2020 and 2021 terms, respectively. On top of that, the second-rounder has allowed 12 touchdowns over the past two years.
With 10 starts in 38 outings, Trey Pipkins hasn't been able to make a run at a permanent role with the first unit. Perhaps he'll have another shot to win the starting job at right tackle in a training camp battle against Storm Norton. The latter allowed nine sacks last year, per Pro Football Focus.
As primarily a backup, Drue Tranquill had productive campaigns in 2019 and 2021. Now, he needs to stay healthy after missing three games last year and all but one game in 2020. The club may see him as a long-term starter.
The Chargers' top four selections have question marks, but they will all have a chance to showcase their best in lead roles in 2022.
Los Angeles Rams
· Round 2, Pick No. 61 overall: Taylor Rapp, DB, Washington
· Round 3, Pick No. 70 overall: Darrell Henderson Jr., RB, Memphis
· Round 3, Pick No. 79 overall: David Long Jr., CB, Michigan
· Round 3, Pick No. 97 overall: Bobby Evans, OT, Oklahoma
· Round 4, Pick No. 134 overall: Greg Gaines, DL, Washington
· Round 5, Pick No. 169 overall: David Edwards, OT, Wisconsin
· Round 7, Pick No. 243 overall: Nick Scott, S, Penn State
· Round 7, Pick No. 251 overall: Dakota Allen, LB, Texas Tech
With the exception of Dakota Allen, the Los Angeles Rams' 2019 class remains intact with all the other players on the roster and in competition for starting or rotational roles.
Taylor Rapp has started in 32 out of 41 contests, but he missed three of the Rams' four 2021 playoff games. He could lose his first-string position to fellow 2019 classmate Nick Scott, who filled in admirably for him during the team's successful Super Bowl run.
Darrell Henderson Jr. has battled injuries, missing nine career games, but he's coming off his most productive pro campaign with 864 yards and eight touchdowns from scrimmage. The Memphis product will likely open the 2022 campaign as the No. 2 running back behind Cam Akers to form a solid two-man backfield.
In 2021, Greg Gaines made strides as a starter, registering 55 tackles, four for loss, 4.5 sacks and 21 pressures. He could continue to develop into one of the better nose tackles across the league.
David Edwards has become a low-end starting guard, opening with the first unit in 41 out of 49 outings, but he allowed six sacks last year, per Pro Football Focus.
David Long Jr. and Bobby Evans haven't made notable contributions, but they’re in competition to start at cornerback and right guard, respectively.
The Rams' 2019 class has provided a decent early return with the potential to look even better if Long or Evans wins his training camp battle this offseason.
· Round 1, Pick No. 13 overall: Christian Wilkins, DT, Clemson
· Round 3, Pick No. 78 overall: Michael Deiter, G, Wisconsin
· Round 5, Pick No. 151 overall: Andrew Van Ginkel, OLB, Wisconsin
· Round 6, Pick No. 202 overall: Isaiah Prince, OT, Ohio State
· Round 7, Pick No. 233 overall: Chandler Cox, FB, Auburn
· Round 7, Pick No. 234 overall: Myles Gaskin, RB, Washington
The Miami Dolphins added a quality starter with their first-round pick and found a couple of contributors on Day 3.
The Dolphins exercised the fifth-year option in Christian Wilkins' rookie deal. He's coming off his best year, logging 89 tackles, 10 for loss, 4.5 sacks, 17 pressures and four pass breakups. The Clemson product showed his ability to rush the passer, which may extend his tenure in Miami beyond 2023.
After appearing in just six games as a rookie, Andrew Van Ginkel became a surprise standout during the 2020 season, recording 48 tackles, seven for loss, 5.5 sacks, 11 pressures, four pass breakups, three forced fumbles and a fumble recovery for a touchdown. He followed that up with another solid year, registering 71 tackles, nine for loss, four sacks, 31 pressures and seven pass breakups. He's an underrated starter for the Dolphins defense.
Myles Gaskin had a productive three-year run, racking up 2002 yards and 13 touchdowns from scrimmage, though he may lose some touches in a crowded backfield with the addition of Chase Edmonds, Sony Michel and Raheem Mostert. Nonetheless, the Washington product has provided more impact than the average seventh-round pick.
Despite the lack of star power and accolades, the Dolphins still get a lot of credit for their first-round hit and a couple of consistent contributors outside the top 150 selections.
· Round 1, Pick No. 18 overall: Garrett Bradbury, C-OL, NC State
· Round 2, Pick No. 50 overall: Irv Smith Jr., TE, Alabama
· Round 3, Pick No. 102 overall: Alexander Mattison, RB, Boise State
· Round 4, Pick No. 114 overall: Dru Samia, OG, Oklahoma
· Round 5, Pick No. 162 overall: Cameron Smith, ILB, USC
· Round 6, Pick No. 190 overall: Armon Watts, DT, Arkansas
· Round 6, Pick No. 191 overall: Marcus Epps, S, Wyoming
· Round 6, Pick No. 193 overall: Olisaemeka Udoh, OT, Elon
· Round 7, Pick No. 217 overall: Kris Boyd, CB, Texas
· Round 7, Pick No. 239 overall: Dillon Mitchell, WR, Oregon
· Round 7, Pick No. 247 overall: Olabisi Johnson, WR, Colorado State
· Round 7, Pick No. 250 overall: Austin Cutting, LS, Air Force
In 2019, the Minnesota Vikings had a high number of selections (12), but they're still looking for a breakout player from this group.
The front office didn't exercise the fifth-year option on Garrett Bradbury's rookie deal. He's not a reliable interior pass protector, and the first-rounder drew eight penalties last season, per Pro Football Focus. The North Carolina State product performs well in run-blocking situations, though.
Irv Smith Jr. has shown off his pass-catching skills, registering 66 receptions for 676 yards and seven touchdowns, but he missed the entire 2021 campaign after undergoing surgery on a torn meniscus. The Alabama product will look to bounce back in a new offensive system under head coach and play-caller Kevin O'Connell.
As probable starters for the upcoming campaign, Smith and Watts give this class some long-term upside, but they haven't established high-level consistency yet.
New England Patriots
· Round 1, Pick No. 32 overall: N'Keal Harry, WR, Arizona State
· Round 2, Pick No. 45 overall: Joejuan Williams, CB, Vanderbilt
· Round 3, Pick No. 77 overall: Chase Winovich, LB, Michigan
· Round 3, Pick No. 87 overall: Damien Harris, RB, Alabama
· Round 3, Pick No. 101 overall: Yodny Cajuste, OT, West Virginia
· Round 4, Pick No. 118 overall: Hjalte Froholdt, C/G, Arkansas
· Round 4, Pick No. 133 overall: Jarrett Stidham, QB, Auburn
· Round 5, Pick No. 159 overall: Byron Cowart, DT, Maryland
· Round 5, Pick No. 163 overall: Jake Bailey, P, Stanford
· Round 7, Pick No. 252 overall: Ken Webster, CB, Mississippi
The New England Patriots have already parted ways with two of their top three selections from this class.
In the most recent transaction, the Patriots traded N'Keal Harry to the Chicago Bears in exchange for a 2024 seventh-round pick. The 6'4", 225-pound wideout came up well short of first-round expectations, hauling in 57 passes for 598 yards and four touchdowns in 33 contests (18 starts).
In March, New England dealt Chase Winovich to the Cleveland Browns following his uneventful 2021 season in which he saw just 113 defensive snaps. Surprisingly, the Patriots didn't give him an opportunity to rebound in 2022. He recorded 11 sacks, 56 pressures and 10 tackles for loss through his first two terms.
Joejuan Williams hasn't provided much in three seasons with the team, logging just eight pass breakups in 36 outings (one start).
Jarrett Stidham could've been Tom Brady's successor in New England, but he only threw for two touchdowns and three interceptions with a 50 percent completion rate in five games as a backup for Cam Newton in 2020.
On the flip side, the Patriots have some bright spots within this group.
Damien Harris has become the team's lead ball-carrier, rushing for 1,620 yards and 17 touchdowns over the last two seasons. As a full-time starter, Byron Cowart flashed in a rotational role last year, recording 27 tackles, three for loss, five pressures and a sack. Jake Bailey earned All-Pro and Pro Bowl nods for the 2020 campaign.
Even with Day 2 and Day 3 positives, we cannot overlook the Patriots' three big misses in the top 77 selections.
New Orleans Saints
· Round 2, Pick No. 48 overall: Erik McCoy, C, Texas A&M
· Round 4, Pick No. 105 overall: C.J. Gardner-Johnson, S, Florida
· Round 6, Pick No. 177 overall: Saquan Hampton, S, Rutgers
· Round 7, Pick No. 231 overall: Alize Mack, TE, Notre Dame
· Round 7, Pick No. 244 overall: Kaden Elliss, OLB, Idaho
The New Orleans Saints have a small class, but they made the best of their top two picks, who have become immediate starters.
Erik McCoy has started in all his games and only missed five outings. In 2021, he didn't allow a sack but committed eight penalties, per Pro Football Focus. If the 24-year-old cuts down on the infractions, he could finish the 2022 season as one of the league's top centers.
The Saints have employed C.J. Gardner-Johnson at slot cornerback and in the box for safety duties. He's been productive all over the field, logging 161 tackles, 15 for loss, five interceptions, 28 pass breakups and three sacks. Based on those numbers, he's one of the league's top nickelbacks.
Because of the Saints' limited selections—only one in the top 100—they didn't have many opportunities to add top prospects, but the front office still found two potential keepers. McCoy and Gardner-Johnson play non-premium positions, but they're both on the rise.
New York Giants
· Round 1, Pick No. 6 overall: Daniel Jones, QB, Duke
· Round 1, Pick No. 17 overall: Dexter Lawrence, DT, Clemson
· Round 1, Pick No. 30 overall: Deandre Baker, CB, Georgia
· Round 3, Pick No. 95 overall: Oshane Ximines, DE, Old Dominion
· Round 4, Pick No. 108 overall: Julian Love, CB, Notre Dame
· Round 5, Pick No. 143 overall: Ryan Connelly, ILB, Wisconsin
· Round 5, Pick No. 171 overall: Darius Slayton, WR, Auburn
· Round 6, Pick No. 180 overall: Corey Ballentine, CB, Washburn
· Round 7, Pick No. 232 overall: George Asafo-Adjei, OT, Kentucky
· Round 7, Pick No. 245 overall: Chris Slayton, DL, Syracuse
The New York Giants had three first-round picks, which should've helped the previous regime put the franchise on track for winning seasons, but that didn't happen. Big Blue parted ways with former general manager Dave Gettleman, and the new administration still has to figure out if Daniel Jones can be a serviceable starter.
As a rookie, Jones showed flashes, throwing for 3,027 yards, 24 touchdowns and 12 interceptions, but his passing yards and touchdown totals have been on the decline thereafter. Though the athletic signal-caller has rushed for 1,000 yards and five touchdowns, he's had some ball-security issues with 36 fumbles, losing 20 of them. The Giants declined to pick up the fifth-year option in rookie his deal.
Dexter Lawrence has provided the most return among the Giants' Day 1 picks, logging 145 tackles, 14 for loss, nine sacks, 48 pressures and five pass breakups.
Through his first two years, Darius Slayton exceeded expectations, hauling in 98 passes for 1,491 yards and 11 touchdowns, but he saw a significant drop-off last year (26 receptions for 339 yards and two touchdowns). According to The Athletic's Dan Duggan, the Giants have shopped him on the trade block.
In mostly a backup role, Julian Love has filled in some gaps in the secondary at safety and slot cornerback, recording 167 tackles, seven for loss, 13 pass breakups and three interceptions. He'll have an opportunity to start at safety because of Logan Ryan's departure to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
If the new coaching staff helps Jones put together his best year, the Giants would get a boost in their grade. Thus far, they clearly didn't get enough out of their first-round investments.
New York Jets
· Round 1, Pick No. 3 overall: Quinnen Williams, DT, Alabama
· Round 3, Pick No. 68 overall: Jachai Polite, OLB, Florida
· Round 3, Pick No. 92 overall: Chuma Edoga, OT, USC
· Round 4, Pick No. 121 overall: Trevon Wesco, TE, West Virginia
· Round 5, Pick No. 157 overall: Blake Cashman, ILB, Minnesota
· Round 6, Pick No. 196 overall: Blessuan Austin, CB, Rutgers
The New York Jets hired general manager Joe Douglas in June 2019, so this is Mike Maccagnan's draft class, which lacks short-term impact and long-term value beyond the first round.
Over the last two seasons, Quinnen Williams has recorded 36 pressures, 13 sacks and 17 tackles for loss as a key front-line defender. Of course, the Jets exercised the fifth-year option in his rookie deal. If healthy for a full season, the 24-year-old could post his best numbers. He's missed at least two outings for each of his campaigns.
Jachai Polite set off alarms with some teams because of poor interviews at the 2019 NFL Scouting Combine, per ESPN's Matt Miller, but Gang Green took a chance on him early in the draft. He hasn't played a regular-season snap in the NFL. Led by Douglas, the team waived him a little more than four months after Maccagnan and co. selected him in the third round.
Between 2019 and 2020, Chuma Edoga, Blake Cashman and Blessuan Austin saw some action with brief stints in starting roles, but none of them made steady strides with the team. Among the three, Edoga is the only player who's still on the roster, and he's not a lock to make the final 53-man cut with the addition of rookie fourth-rounder Max Mitchell.
If not for Williams, Maccagnan would've completely struck out with this class.
· Round 1, Pick No. 22 overall: Andre Dillard, OT, Washington State
· Round 2, Pick No. 53 overall: Miles Sanders, RB, Penn State
· Round 2, Pick No. 57 overall: J.J. Arcega-Whiteside, WR, Stanford
· Round 4, Pick No. 138 overall: Shareef Miller, DE, Penn State
· Round 5, Pick No. 167 overall: Clayton Thorson, QB, Northwestern
Through three seasons, the Philadelphia Eagles should be disappointed with their early return from this class.
Andre Dillard hasn't been able to break into a starting role. He's opened with the first unit in nine out of 31 outings. Jordan Mailata, who's a seventh-rounder from the 2018 class, has put a stronghold on the left tackle job and signed a multiyear extension last September.
As a wide receiver, J.J. Arcega-Whiteside caught 16 passes for 290 yards and a touchdown in 40 games. This offseason, the Eagles will move him to tight end in an attempt to develop him into a more productive contributor.
Miles Sanders has led the Eagles in rushing for two of his three campaigns with at least 754 yards every year, but he somehow failed to score a touchdown in 2021. The 25-year-old ball-carrier wants more touches, but he may not see an expanded role with Jalen Hurts' involvement in the ground attack. Furthermore, Sanders has to share the backfield with Kenneth Gainwell and Boston Scott.
Between Shareef Miller and Clayton Thorson, they've played two snaps on special teams.
Barring a 1,000-yard campaign for Sanders on the ground, we'll look back at this class as a low-production group.
· Round 1, Pick No. 10 overall: Devin Bush, ILB, Michigan
· Round 3, Pick No. 66 overall: Diontae Johnson, WR, Toledo
· Round 3, Pick No. 83 overall: Justin Layne, CB, Michigan State
· Round 4, Pick No. 122 overall: Benny Snell Jr., RB, Kentucky
· Round 5, Pick No. 141 overall: Zach Gentry, TE, Michigan
· Round 6, Pick No. 175 overall: Sutton Smith, OLB, Northern Illinois
· Round 6, Pick No. 192 overall: Isaiah Buggs, DT, Alabama
· Round 6, Pick No. 207 overall: Ulysees Gilbert III, ILB, Akron
· Round 7, Pick No. 219 overall: Derwin Gray, OT, Maryland
The Pittsburgh Steelers added players who produced right out of college, but they seem hesitant to commit to their top picks for the long term.
Devin Bush has trended in the wrong direction after getting a couple of votes for Defensive Rookie of the Year. In 2020, he missed 11 games. Last season, quarterbacks targeted him, and the 5'11", 234-pound linebacker allowed his worst single-season marks in coverage with a 70.2 percent completion rate and a 102.8 passer rating. The Steelers declined to pick up the fifth-year option in his deal.
Diontae Johnson wants to stay in Pittsburgh for the long term, per ESPN's Jeremy Fowler (h/t Chris Mueller of 93.7 The Fan). The Steelers may want to see him build on a 2021 Pro Bowl campaign before they open the checkbook for him in a contract year.
Justin Layne hasn't been able to carve out a lead role. He's served as a backup for all of his 43 appearances. Meanwhile, Benny Snell Jr. has seen a drop-off in his rushing production with a limited workload. In 2021, he recorded just 36 carries for 98 yards. The Athletic's Mark Kaboly thinks the team might add another veteran ball-carrier to spell Najee Harris.
Barring a turnaround for Bush and a long-term contract for Johnson, this class looks mediocre in hindsight.
San Francisco 49ers
· Round 1, Pick No. 2 overall: Nick Bosa, DE, Ohio State
· Round 2, Pick No. 36 overall: Deebo Samuel, WR, South Carolina
· Round 3, Pick No. 67 overall: Jalen Hurd, WR, Baylor
· Round 4, Pick No. 110 overall: Mitch Wishnowsky, P, Utah
· Round 5, Pick No. 148 overall: Dre Greenlaw, LB, Arkansas
· Round 6, Pick No. 176 overall: Kaden Smith, TE, Stanford
· Round 6, Pick No. 183 overall: Justin Skule, OT, Vanderbilt
· Round 6, Pick No. 198 overall: Tim Harris, CB, Virginia
The San Francisco 49ers' top two selections have become budding stars, and they picked up a couple of Day 3 contributors.
Nick Bosa won Defensive Rookie of the Year, appeared in just two games because of a torn ACL in the following campaign and rebounded with 15.5 sacks, 49 pressures, a league-leading 21 tackles for loss and four forced fumbles in 2021. He's the 49ers' best pass-rusher and may sign a megadeal in the near future.
San Francisco may soon come to an agreement with Deebo Samuel on a massive extension after his 2021 All-Pro and Pro Bowl campaign, logging 1,770 yards and 14 touchdowns from scrimmage. As a unique playmaking wide receiver who can also handle a sizeable rushing workload—perhaps reluctantly—he'll likely command $25-plus million on a new deal.
As a rookie, Dre Greenlaw worked his way into a starting role alongside All-Pro linebacker Fred Warner. Though he missed 14 games because of a nagging groin injury last season, the former fifth-round pick looks like an absolute steal with 199 tackles, 10 for loss, two sacks, four pass breakups and two interceptions. Meanwhile, Mitch Wishnowsky has held on to his punting job.
Between 2019 and 2020, Justin Skule filled in at left tackle and right guard, but he struggled in spot duty. In June of 2021, he tore his ACL and landed on injured reserve for the year.
San Francisco has a strong class because of the early return from Bosa, Samuel and Greenlaw.
· Round 1, Pick No. 29 overall: L.J. Collier, DE, TCU
· Round 2, Pick No. 47 overall: Marquise Blair, S, Utah
· Round 2, Pick No. 64 overall: DK Metcalf, WR, Ole Miss
· Round 3, Pick No. 88 overall: Cody Barton, LB, Utah
· Round 4, Pick No. 120 overall: Gary Jennings, WR, West Virginia
· Round 4, Pick No. 124 overall: Phil Haynes, OL, Wake Forest
· Round 4, Pick No. 132 overall: Ugo Amadi, S, Oregon
· Round 5, Pick No. 142 overall: Ben Burr-Kirven, LB, Washington
· Round 6, Pick No. 204 overall: Travis Homer, RB, Miami
· Round 6, Pick No. 209 overall: Demarcus Christmas, DT, Florida State
· Round 7, Pick No. 236 overall: John Ursua, WR, Hawaii
The Seattle Seahawks' class has one shining star, a solid starter and a bunch of other players who still need to find their way.
The Seahawks have a dynamic playmaker in DK Metcalf, who's 6'4", 235 pounds with top gear speed. He's tough to cover on the perimeter, which is evident with his production (216 receptions for 3,170 yards and 29 touchdowns). Perhaps Metcalf benefitted from playing with quarterback Russell Wilson, but he's still an elite talent because of his physical tools. Seattle may sign him to a big-money extension before Week 1.
Though slot cornerbacks still rank low on the position premium scale, they've become increasingly important to combat spread offenses. The Seahawks may have found their long-term nickelback in Ugo Amadi, who registered 108 tackles, six for loss, 13 pass breakups, two forced fumbles and an interception over the last two years.
Cody Barton will have a shot to showcase his talent in a starting role for the upcoming campaign, but he's had to wait his turn behind linebackers Bobby Wagner and K.J. Wright. Because of his draft status, L.J. Collier's underwhelming production with just 33 tackles, five for loss, three sacks and 22 pressures significantly hurt the grade for this class.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
· Round 1, Pick No. 5 overall: Devin White, LB, LSU
· Round 2, Pick No. 39 overall: Sean Murphy-Bunting, CB, Central Michigan
· Round 3, Pick No. 94 overall: Jamel Dean, CB, Auburn
· Round 3, Pick No. 99 overall: Mike Edwards, CB, Kentucky
· Round 4, Pick No. 107 overall: Anthony Nelson, DE, Iowa
· Round 5, Pick No. 145 overall: Matt Gay, K, Utah
· Round 6, Pick No. 208 overall: Scott Miller, WR, Bowling Green
· Round 7, Pick No. 215 overall: Terry Beckner Jr., DT, Missouri
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers added a contributor for every level of the defense with this class.
Devin White isn't the most reliable defender on passing downs, but he doesn't give up a ton of yards per completion (fewer than nine in all three seasons). The LSU product has led the Buccaneers in tackles for each of the last two terms and contributes to the pass rush with 15 sacks and 56 pressures in 45 games. Last year, he earned a Pro Bowl nod.
Sean Murphy-Bunting, Jamel Dean and Mike Edwards have made contributions in the secondary, though the latter two have recently played on a starting-caliber level.
Dean has allowed a completion rate of 50 or below for two out of his three campaigns and didn't give up a touchdown last year. He has 33 pass breakups and five interceptions in 42 outings (23 starts). Edwards is coming off his best term, logging seven pass breakups and three interceptions (two pick-sixes).
In 2021, Murphy-Bunting missed several games because of a dislocated elbow, but he's also allowed a passer rating higher than 101 in two out of three seasons and 13 touchdowns for his career.
Last year, Anthony Nelson showed flashes in a backup role, registering 22 tackles, seven for loss, five sacks and 14 pressures. In 2020, Scotty Miller had some bright moments, hauling in 33 passes for 501 yards and three touchdowns. Matt Gay played one year in Tampa Bay and earned a Pro Bowl nod with the Los Angeles Rams in 2021.
The Buccaneers' 2019 class delivered solid production through its first three seasons, and White has star potential.
· Round 1, Pick No. 19 overall: Jeffery Simmons, DT, Mississippi State
· Round 2, Pick No. 51 overall: A.J. Brown, WR, Ole Miss
· Round 3, Pick No. 82 overall: Nate Davis, OL, Charlotte
· Round 4, Pick No. 116 overall: Amani Hooker, S, Iowa
· Round 5, Pick No. 168 overall: D'Andre Walker, LB, Georgia
· Round 6, Pick No. 188 overall: David Long Jr., LB, West Virginia
The Tennessee Titans have one of the top 2019 hauls, though one recent transaction will leave a bitter taste in their mouths when they think about this class.
Jeffery Simmons may command a massive pay raise in the near future. After a slow start to his career because of a torn ACL, the 6'4", 305-pound defensive tackle wreaked havoc on offensive lines. Simmons has registered 135 tackles, 19 for loss, 13.5 sacks, 51 pressures and 12 pass breakups. Coming off a year in which he earned Pro Bowl and second-team All-Pro recognition, Simmons has star potential.
A.J. Brown led Tennessee in receiving yards for each of his three seasons, and he earned a Pro Bowl nod in 2020. However, the Titans couldn't come to a middle ground on an extension with his agent, so they traded him to the Philadelphia Eagles in April.
Nate Davis, Amani Hooker and David Long Jr. will go into training camp as probable starters.
After two seasons in a backup role, Long took over a lead role in the previous campaign, so his best years may be ahead of him. He's a late-round pick with great upside.
With six selections, the Titans picked up five starters in this class. Though they've dealt Brown because of financial differences, he still had three highly productive years in Tennessee.
· Round 1, Pick No. 15 overall: Dwayne Haskins, QB, Ohio State
· Round 1, Pick No. 26 overall: Montez Sweat, OLB-DE, Mississippi State
· Round 3, Pick No. 76 overall: Terry McLaurin, WR, Ohio State
· Round 4, Pick No. 112 overall: Bryce Love, RB, Stanford
· Round 4, Pick No. 131 overall: Wes Martin, OG, Indiana
· Round 5, Pick No. 153 overall: Ross Pierschbacher, OL, Alabama
· Round 5, Pick No. 173 overall: Cole Holcomb, LB, North Carolina
· Round 6, Pick No. 206 overall: Kelvin Harmon, WR, NC State
· Round 7, Pick No. 227 overall: Jimmy Moreland, CB, James Madison
· Round 7, Pick No. 253 overall: Jordan Brailford, OLB, Oklahoma State
The Washington Commanders' grade doesn't factor in Dwayne Haskins, who passed away in April.
The Commanders' 2019 class features three players who will take on key roles in the upcoming campaign.
Montez Sweat has become a high-impact playmaker, logging 21 sacks, 82 pressures and 23 tackles for loss through three campaigns. The front office picked up the fifth-year option on his rookie deal, and he has a good shot to stay in Washington for the long term.
In June, the Commanders agreed to sign Terry McLaurin to a three-year extension. He's led the club in receiving yards for each of his three seasons as the go-to pass-catcher.
Cole Holcomb doesn't play at a premium position, but he's the most reliable linebacker on the roster going into the 2022 campaign. The former fifth-rounder has registered 319 tackles, 14 for loss, 4.5 sacks, nine pass breakups, three interceptions (one pick-six), five forced fumbles and a fumble recovery in 43 outings (41 starts).
Within their first two seasons, Wes Martin, Kelvin Harmon and Jimmy Moreland either started in several games or provided low-end production, though Harmon is the only one of three who's still on the roster.
None of these players have Pro Bowl or All-Pro accolades, but this group has long-term value.
Maurice Moton covers the NFL for Bleacher Report. You can follow him on Twitter @MoeMoton.