2015 NFL Draft Results: Complete List of Picks, Analysis of Major Storylines

Matt Fitzgerald@@MattFitz_geraldCorrespondent IIIMay 5, 2015

Marcus Mariota, center, former Oregon quarterback and overall No. 2 NFL football draft pick by the Tennessee Titans, poses with head coach Ken Whisenhunt, right, and general manager Ruston Webster, left, during a news conference Friday, May 1, 2015, in Nashville, Tenn. Mariota was selected by the Titans in the first round Thursday. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)
Mark Humphrey/Associated Press

The 2015 NFL draft was a great success for many teams seeking to improve their rosters.

One strong draft class can lead to an immediate turnaround and even sustained success thereafter. Just ask the Seattle Seahawks after they hauled in a tremendous crop of talent in 2012. Seattle hasn't missed the playoffs since, has won a Super Bowl and played in another.

A lot of that can be attributed to the Seahawks finding a franchise quarterback in Russell Wilson in the third round.

Bottom line: No pick can be taken for granted. Check out the complete list of selections from all seven rounds below, followed by a closer look at the biggest storylines to emerge from the draft.

Major Draft Storylines

Mariota and DGB: The Next Big Passing Combo?

One particular in the development yours truly hasn't been able to shake: the Tennessee Titans' bold moves in the first two rounds. After nabbing their new face of the franchise in Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback Marcus Mariota, they traded down to start Day 2.

Before breaking that down, check out what Titans coach Ken Whisenhunt shared with reporters about Mariota's mind, per NFL Network's Jeff Darlington:

Jeff Darlington @JeffDarlington

1 reason Titans think Mariota can start Week 1? “Spacial memory,” Whisenhunt says. Sports' equivalent of photo memory. Will ease transition.

Jeff Darlington @JeffDarlington

Whisenhunt said, during draft process, Mariota could recall exact scenarios (when, where, how) from games three years ago in perfect detail.

Tennessee started at the top of the order with the chance to grab whoever was rated the absolute highest on its board. It was a tough maneuver that took guts, but it paid off in a big way when the Titans landed supremely gifted wide receiver Dorial Green-Beckham at No. 40 overall.

Off-field issues caused Green-Beckham's stock to sink. Not to lean so heavily Darlington—it's just that he has great stuff, including some encouraging testimony from somebody in the pass-catcher's inner circle:

Jeff Darlington @JeffDarlington

Someone close to Dorial Green-Beckham told me, “He renewed my hope in pro athletes, esp. ones that screwed up.” …If sticks, nice for Titans.

Green-Beckham appears to have learned from his checkered past well enough to make it in the NFL. Having a high-character QB in Mariota to grow with can only help his development, too.

Titans general manager Ruston Webster didn't do all too well in prior draft classes. Credit goes to him for going in on two somewhat risky but electrifying playmakers to breathe life into the organization.

If tighter throwing windows, trickier terminology and exotic defenses give Mariota trouble, his margin for error is a bit larger with a massive target such as the 6'5", 237-pound Green-Beckham to throw to.

Among the other weapons at Mariota's disposal are Justin Hunter, Kendall Wright and tight end Delanie Walker. Gifted as those players are, Green-Beckham has the upside to be the No. 1 option above all of them.

Pair of 1st-Time GMs Look Strong

The New York Jets and the Chicago Bears stood out as teams that crushed just about every pick despite having new GMs in Mike Maccagnan and Ryan Pace respectively.

To start with the former team, Maccagnan carried on from a strong free-agency period and brought in a plethora of strong talent for coach Todd Bowles to work with. New York may have landed the best player in the draft in Leonard Williams.

Williams' fall to the Jets was a bit of a surprise to others and even Maccagnan himself, per the team's Twitter account:

A high-motor outside linebacker in Lorenzo Mauldin was also added, along with Bryce Petty all the way in the fourth round. Trades to acquire wide receiver Brandon Marshall and running back Zac Stacy should also be included in Maccagnan's draft, since they involved picks.

Pace did extremely well in his first go at the draft for Chicago as well. Funny enough, he made the move of trading Marshall out of the Windy City. His first two choices were most notable: Marshall's replacement on the outside, Kevin White, and a necessary presence on the defensive line in Eddie Goldman.

The Bears had lacked a true nose tackle to command a double-team in the trenches. Now they have that in Goldman, a versatile athlete who can even slide out to defensive end in coordinator Vic Fangio's system.

Center Hroniss Grasu out of Oregon was a nice find in the third round as well. Bleacher Report's Dan Pompei weighed in on what Pace did:

Dan Pompei @danpompei

10. The Bears got arguably the second best WR, NT and C in the draft. That’s pretty good, don’t you think?

Michigan State RB Jeremy Langford, a fourth-round pick, had a stellar performance at the NFL Scouting Combine with a 4.42-second 40-yard dash and could be the Bears' future feature back after Matt Forte.

It's hard not to respect what both the Jets and Bears were able to accomplish. Both teams are in the midst of coaching changes but have revamped their rosters this offseason to have serious chances at turning things around as soon as 2015.

New York's quarterback situation is still a bit of a question mark, as is the case in Chicago with Jay Cutler slinging the pigskin. Decent play at that position for both clubs could give them playoff berths.

Browns Rake in Massive Haul of 12 Picks

Phil Long/Associated Press

Garnering acclaim as a first-time GM isn't easy. Just ask Ray Farmer, who wheeled and dealt his way through the 2014 draft to land Justin Gilbert and Johnny Manziel in the first round.

Both those picks had bad rookie years, and Farmer opted to play it far safer this time around. The more conservative strategy worked to Cleveland's advantage. The Browns bolstered both lines with a dynamic nose tackle in Danny Shelton and versatile Florida State product Cameron Erving.

Farmer's best pick may have been his last: seventh-rounder Ifo Ekpre-Olomu, a cornerback coming off a torn ACL who could be a starter someday.

College production was a big theme, which led to the choices of Utah pass-rusher Nate Orchard (18.5 sacks in 2014), Washington State receiver Vince Mayle (106 receptions last season) and notably Miami Hurricanes all-time leading rusher Duke Johnson.

ESPN's Jeremy Fowler brought up a strong point, however:

Jeremy Fowler @JFowlerESPN

Thing you can’t ignore with Browns draft: Took two skill guys out of 12 picks, none in top 75, despite glaring problems on O

Coach Mike Pettine has to be doing cartwheels about the defense, but how the Browns plan to score points this next season is a little bit unclear.

Manziel is far from a sure bet. The other prime candidate to start, veteran journeyman Josh McCown, has never been the proverbial man under center anywhere, now arriving in what's been a bevvy of broken dreams for so many QBs since 1999.

If Cleveland has another losing season, there's no need to break the band up. The unified front of Farmer and Pettine provides the Browns with legitimate hope. As much turmoil as the Browns endured in the offseason, they're close to competing for a playoff spot.

But 2016 figures to be the year Cleveland really starts rocking.

Whether it's a matured Manziel or a top draft pick from that year at the most important position, the 2015 draft class—though the Browns probably won't keep all 12 selections—figures to go a long way in supplying the depth this franchise has lacked for so long.


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