Grading the NFL Draft is a futile exercise in and of itself. Often, we look back way down the line and see these grades were way off in trying to assess if a team did well or not. We fully recognize this, but it is still an interesting way to look at and analyze a team’s draft. Keep in mind that each team is different and has different fits that could affect the value. Today, we are grading the NFC North.
Below you will see where each player was taken in this class with my overall ranking in parenthesis.
NFC NORTH DRAFT GRADES
2-48-(58)-S-Jaquan Brisker-Penn State
3-71-(120)-WR-Velus Jones Jr.-Tennessee
5-168-(126)-OT-Braxton Jones-Southern Utah
5-174-(123)-EDGE-Dominique Robinson-Miami (OH)
6-186-(182)-G-Zachary Thomas-San Diego State
7-255-(NR)-P-Trenton Gill-NC State
The Bears addressed most of the holes in the secondary with the additions of Kyler Gordon and Jaquan Brisker. Both add great cover skills. I love the high upside selection of Dominique Robinson in the fifth. They will need some extra pass rush after dealing Khalil Mack to the Chargers. Robinson is still growing into the position as a former wide receiver. Velus Jones developed into a reliable wide receiver this past season. Justin Fields needed more weapons.
The Bears essentially owned the last two rounds of the draft after initiating several trade backs.
5-177-(188)-TE-James Mitchell-Virginia Tech
6-188-(162)-LB-Malcolm Rodriguez-Oklahoma State
6-217-(NR)-EDGE-James Houston-Jackson State
7-237-(268)-CB-Chase Lucas-Arizona State
The Lions pissed off the NFL by rushing their selection of Aidan Hutchinson to the podium. After the Jags selected Travon Walker, Detroit wasted no time adding the pass rusher they wanted all along. They doubled down in the third round with another talented sack artist in Josh Paschal. The two could form a dominant pair of bookend edge defenders for the Lions’ defense.
I really loved the bold move of trading up for WR Jameson Williams. Williams may actually be ready for training camp. The Lions gave up a three to move up 20 spots with a decision rival.
GREEN BAY PACKERS
2-34-(34)-WR-Christian Watson-North Dakota State
4-140-(103)-C-Zach Tom-Wake Forest
5-179-(72)-EDGE-Kingsley Enagbare-South Carolina
7-228-(269)-LB-Tariq Carpenter-Georgia Tech
7-234-(NR)-DL-Jonathan Ford-Miami (FL)
7-249-(104)-OT-Rasheed Walker-Penn State
There is a lot to like about the Packers draft class. I said on our podcast that if Christian Watson develops a relationship quickly with Aaron Rodgers then he could put up numbers that will get him in the Rookie of the Year conversation. I also think that Romeo Doubs was one of the best deep route wide receivers in this class. Something I also believe Rodgers will want to take advantage of.
Quay Walker is built like you would think an NFL LB would be. He was rising up boards late and Green Bay felt they had to nab him early. Devonte Wyatt could develop into a nice interior pass rusher for them as well.
I love the additions of athletic utility offensive lineman Zach Tom and all gas no brakes pass rusher Kingsley Enagbare.
2-42-(27)-CB-Andrew Booth Jr.-Clemson
5-169-(221)-RB-Ty Chandler-North Carolina
6-191-(187)-WR-Jalen Nailor-Michigan State
7-227-(290)-TE-Nick Muse-South Carolina
Not unlike the Bears, the Vikings also upgraded their secondary with the selections of Lewis Cine and Andrew Booth. I think Ed Ingram is a future starter on their offensive interior.
I wasn’t as high on Brian Asamoah as most. At the very least, he upgrades their special teams units.
Next up, I finish up with the NFC South!
NFC EAST – NFC WEST