NFL Draft 2011: Report card

  • NFC
  • AFC
Team Analysis Picks Grade

Arizona
Cardinals

Taking CB Patrick Peterson fifth overall was the right move. He's a difference-maker on defense, and second-round RB Ryan Williams could be an immediate offensive contributor. But the Cardinals didn't get a QB. 1 (5) Patrick Peterson
2 (38) Ryan Williams
3 (69) Rob Housler
4 (103) Sam Acho
5 (136) Anthony Sherman
6 (171) Quan Sturdivant
6 (184) David Carter
7 (249) DeMarco Sampson

B

Atlanta
Falcons

The Falcons gave up a lot to move up 21 spots in the first round and get WR Julio Jones. He should be a major addition to the offense. He'd better be, considering the cost of the trade. 1 (6) Julio Jones
3 (91) Akeem Dent
5 (145) Jacquizz Rodgers
6 (192) Matt Bosher
7 (210) Andrew Jackson
7 (230) Cliff Matthews

B

Carolina
Panthers

Top overall choice Cam Newton certainly has star quality and might become a centerpiece QB. But is he an NFL-ready passer? Some talent evaluators have their doubts. 1 (1) Cam Newton
3 (65) Terrell McClain
3 (97) Sione Fua
4 (98) Brandon Hogan
5 (132) Kealoha Pilares
6 (166) Lawrence Wilson
6 (203) Zack Williams
7 (244) Lee Ziemba

C+

Chicago
Bears

The Bears did well to fortify their offensive and defensive lines with T Gabe Carimi in the first round and DT Stephen Paea in the second round. They weren't eye-catching picks, but they were solid moves. 1 (29) Gabe Carimi
2 (53) Stephen Paea
3 (93) Chris Conte
5 (160) Nathan Enderle
6 (195) J.T. Thomas

B

Dallas
Cowboys

The Cowboys did exactly as expected by taking T Tyron Smith ninth overall. Their most intriguing pick could be second-round LB Bruce Carter. 1 (9) Tyron Smith
2 (40) Bruce Carter
3 (71) DeMarco Murray
4 (110) David Arkin
5 (143) Josh Thomas
6 (176) Dwayne Harris
7 (220) Shaun Chapas
7 (252) Bill Nagy

C+

Detroit
Lions

Getting DT Nick Fairley 13th overall could be a steal and adding both WR Titus Young and RB Mikel Leshoure in the second round is a major boost to the offense. How are opposing offensive lines going to block both Fairley and Ndamukong Suh on the interior? 1 (13) Nick Fairley
2 (44) Titus Young
2 (57) Mikel LeShoure
5 (157) Doug Hogue
7 (209) Johnny Culbreath

B+

Green Bay
Packers

The champs made smart moves all around with a T for the future in first-rounder Derek Sherrod, another WR option for Aaron Rodgers in second-rounder Randall Cobb and much-needed RB help in third-rounder Alex Green. 1 (32) Derek Sherrod
2 (64) Randall Cobb
3 (96) Alex Green
4 (131) Davon House
5 (141) D.J. Williams
6 (179) Caleb Schlauderaff
6 (186) D.J. Smith
6 (197) Ricky Elmore
7 (218) Ryan Taylor
7 (233) Lawrence Guy

B

Minnesota
Vikings

Not surprisingly, the Vikings went with a QB at 12th overall. But it was a bit of a surprise that they went with Christian Ponder instead of Andy Dalton. The second-round selection of TE Kyle Rudolph could aid their young QB when Ponder is deemed ready to play. 1 (12) Christian Ponder
2 (43) Kyle Rudolph
4 (106) Christian Ballard
5 (139) Brandon Burton
6 (168) DeMarcus Love
6 (170) Mistral Raymond
6 (172) Brandon Fusco
6 (200) Ross Homan
7 (215) D'Aundre Reed
7 (236) Stephen Burton

B-

New Orleans
Saints

The Saints got significant immediate upgrades on both sides of the ball with their dual first-rounders, DE Cameron Jordan and Ingram. Third-round LB Martez Wilson also should help. The only question is whether they gave up too much to trade up to take Ingram. 1 (24) Cameron Jordan
1 (28) Mark Ingram
3 (72) Martez Wilson
3 (88) Johnny Patrick
7 (226) Greg Romeus
7 (243) Nate Bussey

B+

New York
Giants

The Giants were extremely fortunate that CB Prince Amukamara fell to them at 19th overall. They were smart enough to take advantage, and second-round DT Marvin Austin and third-round WR Jerrel Jernigan have the talent to make the organization look good as well. 1 (19) Prince Amukamara
2 (52) Marvin Austin
3 (83) Jerrel Jernigan
4 (117) James Brewer
6 (185) Greg Jones
6 (198) Tyler Sash
6 (202) Jacquian Williams
7 (221) Da'Rel Scott

B+

Philadelphia
Eagles

The Eagles love to draft linemen and adhered to that by taking G Danny Watkins 23rd overall. They also addressed needs in the secondary. Their draft class lacks attention-grabbing moves, although they certainly don't mind that. 1 (23) Danny Watkins
2 (54) Jaiquawn Jarrett
3 (90) Curtis Marsh
4 (116) Casey Matthews
4 (120) Alex Henery
5 (149) Dion Lewis
5 (161) Julian Vandervelde
6 (191) Jason Kelce
6 (193) Brian Rolle
7 (237) Greg Lloyd
7 (240) Stanley Havili

C-

San Francisco
49ers

Trading up in the second round to get Colin Kaepernick was a good move. Some around the league thought the QB from Nevada would go late in the first round, especially with the early run league-wide at the position. The seventh overall pick might have been slightly high for DE-LB Aldon Smith, although many talent evaluators say he will be a productive NFL pass rusher. 1 (7) Aldon Smith
2 (36) Colin Kaepernick
3 (80) Chris Culliver
4 (115) Kendall Hunter
5 (163) Daniel Kilgore
6 (182) Ronald Johnson
6 (190) Colin Jones
7 (211) Bruce Miller
7 (239) Mike Person
7 (250) Curtis Holcomb

B+

Seattle
Seahawks

Taking T-G James Carpenter 25th overall might work out fine for the Seahawks. But with Dalton and Kaepernick still available at that point late in the first round for QB-needy teams, it seems like Seattle might have been able to trade down and still get Carpenter a bit later. 1 (25) James Carpenter
3 (75) John Moffitt
4 (99) K.J. Wright
4 (107) Kris Durham
5 (154) Richard Sherman
5 (156) Mark LeGree
6 (173) Byron Maxwell
7 (205) Lazarius Levingston
7 (242) Malcolm Smith

C-

St. Louis
Rams

Getting DE Robert Quinn at 14th could pay major dividends, and TE Lance Kendricks was a good choice in the second round. 1 (14) Robert Quinn
2 (47) Lance Kendricks
3 (78) Austin Pettis
4 (112) Greg Salas
5 (158) Jermale Hines
7 (216) Mikail Baker
7 (228) Jabara Williams
7 (229) Jonathan Nelson

B-

Tampa Bay
Buccaneers

The Buccaneers went defense on their first three picks. If DE Da'Quan Bowers's knee is in better shape than many teams apparently believed, Tampa got a second-round steal. TE Luke Stocker was a good fourth-round value and fifth-round S Ahmad Black could help. 1 (20) Adrian Clayborn
2 (51) Da'Quan Bowers
3 (84) Mason Foster
4 (104) Luke Stocker
5 (151) Ahmad Black
6 (187) Allen Bradford
7 (222) Anthony Gaitor
7 (238) Daniel Hardy

C+

Washington
Redskins

There's nothing exactly wrong with the Redskins trading down to take LB Ryan Kerrigan in the first round. He fits into the defense well. But it's a QB-centric league and the Redskins passed on their chance to take Gabbert when he dropped to them at 10th. They'd better be right. 1 (16) Ryan Kerrigan
2 (41) Jarvis Jenkins
3 (79) Leonard Hankerson
4 (105) Roy Helu
5 (146) DeJon Gomes
5 (155) Niles Paul
6 (177) Evan Royster
6 (178) Aldrick Robinson
7 (213) Brandyn Thompson
7 (217) Maurice Hurt
7 (224) Markus White
7 (253) Chris Neild

C

Team Analysis Picks Grade

Baltimore
Ravens

The Ravens get a pass on their passed first-round pick because of a snafu in a would-be trade with the Bears. They still got their guy, CB Jimmy Smith, one pick later. Second-round WR Torrey Smith is a good "get." 1 (27) Jimmy Smith
2 (58) Torrey Smith
3 (85) Jah Reid
4 (123) Tandon Doss
5 (164) Chykie Brown
5 (165) Pernell McPhee
6 (180) Tyrod Taylor
7 (225) Anthony Allen

B+

Buffalo
Bills

DT Marcell Dareus, the third overall pick, could be a great player and second-round CB Aaron Williams could help. But they passed up taking a QB with Blaine Gabbert available in the first round and Andy Dalton there in the second round. 1 (3) Marcell Dareus
2 (34) Aaron Williams
3 (68) Kelvin Sheppard
4 (100) Da'Norris Searcy
4 (122) Chris Hairston
5 (133) Johnny White
6 (169) Chris White
7 (206) Justin Rogers
7 (245) Michael Jasper

C+

Cincinnati
Bengals

Carson Palmer and Chad Ochocinco are talking about their days with the team being over. If so, the Bengals took care of both situations. They got the draft's top WR, A.J. Green, fourth overall and were lucky to land Andy Dalton, who somehow got out of the first round even with the early run on QBs, three picks into the second round. 1 (4) A.J. Green
2 (35) Andy Dalton
3 (66) Dontay Moch
4 (101) Clint Boling
5 (134) Robert Sands
6 (167) Ryan Whalen
7 (207) Korey Lindsey
7 (246) Jay Finley

A

Cleveland
Browns

The Browns did well in the big trade with the Falcons, emerging with an extra first-rounder next year. They moved back up to get solid DT Phil Taylor in the first round, then added WR Greg Little with the second-rounder they got in the trade with Atlanta. 1 (21) Phil Taylor
2 (37) Jabaal Sheard
2 (59) Greg Little
4 (102) Jordan Cameron
4 (124) Owen Marecic
5 (137) Buster Skrine
5 (150) Jason Pinkston
7 (248) Eric Hagg

B

Denver
Broncos

The Broncos had four of the draft's first 67 picks and focused on defense, taking LB Von Miller over Dareus second overall and going with S Rahim Moore with the first of two second-round choices. 1 (2) Von Miller
2 (45) Rahim Moore
2 (46) Orlando Franklin
3 (67) Nate Irving
4 (108) Quinton Carter
4 (129) Julius Thomas
6 (189) Mike Mohamed
7 (204) Virgil Green
7 (247) Jeremy Beal

B

Houston
Texans

The Texans badly needed to improve their pass defense and did so early in the draft by getting pass rushers J.J. Watt and Brooks Reed and CB Brandon Harris, who was a great value late in the second round. 1 (11) J.J. Watt
2 (42) Brooks Reed
2 (60) Brandon Harris
4 (127) Rashad Carmichael
5 (144) Shiloh Keo
5 (152) T.J. Yates
7 (214) Derek Newton
7 (254) Cheta Ozougwu

B+

Indianapolis
Colts

The Colts were very lucky and very smart to add a pair of bookend young tackles for Peyton Manning. Anthony Castonzo fell to them at 22nd overall and they got Ben Ijalana in the second round. 1 (22) Anthony Castonzo
2 (49) Ben Ijalana
3 (87) Drake Nevis
4 (119) Delone Carter
6 (188) Chris L. Rucker

B+

Jacksonville
Jaguars

The Jaguars surrendered their second-round pick to move up six spots in the first round. But it will be well worth it if Gabbert becomes a franchise QB, and third-round T/G William Rackley also could help. 1 (10) Blaine Gabbert
3 (76) Will Rackley
4 (114) Cecil Shorts
4 (121) Chris Prosinski
5 (147) Rod Issac

B+

Kansas City
Chiefs

The Chiefs jumped in front of the Ravens in the first round and got an interesting WR prospect in Jonathan Baldwin, then added good-value picks with G-C Rodney Hudson in the second round and LB Justin Houston in the third round. 1 (26) Jon Baldwin
2 (55) Rodney Hudson
3 (70) Justin Houston
3 (86) Allen Bailey
4 (118) Jalil Brown
5 (135) Ricky Stanzi
5 (140) Gabe Miller
6 (199) Jerrell Powe
7 (223) Shane Bannon

B

Miami
Dolphins

The Dolphins waited until the second round to get a RB, Daniel Thomas, when they could have taken Mark Ingram in the first round. Instead, they went with Mike Pouncey, the draft's top interior offensive lineman, at 15th overall. But were there more pressing needs? 1 (15) Mike Pouncey
2 (62) Daniel Thomas
4 (111) Edmond Gates
6 (174) Charles Clay
7 (231) Frank Kearse
7 (235) Jimmy Wilson

B-

New England
Patriots

The Patriots had stockpiled picks for this draft, and their seemingly annual draft-day maneuvering kept them well stocked for future drafts. First-round T Nate Solder and second-round CB Rasi-I Dowling should be significant contributors and taking QB Ryan Mallett was well worth it, given that it came in the third round and the Patriots had so many other picks if this one doesn't work out. 1 (17) Nate Solder
2 (33) Ras-I Dowling
2 (56) Shane Vereen
3 (73) Stevan Ridley
3 (74) Ryan Mallett
5 (138) Marcus Cannon
5 (159) Lee Smith
6 (194) Markell Carter
7 (219) Malcolm Williams

A-

New York
Jets

They bolstered their defensive line by taking Muhammad Wilkerson in the first round and Kenrick Ellis in the third round, but it's questionable if they added immediate contributors in any other areas. 1 (30) Muhammad Wilkerson
3 (94) Kenrick Ellis
4 (126) Bilal Powell
5 (153) Jeremy Kerley
7 (208) Greg McElroy
7 (227) Scotty McKnight

C

Oakland
Raiders

The Raiders didn't pick until 48th overall. They did get some help on the offensive line, where third-rounder Joseph Barksdale in particular could be a decent value. 2 (48) Stefen Wisniewski
3 (81) DeMarcus Van Dyke
3 (92) Joseph Barksdale
4 (113) Chimdi Chekwa
4 (125) Taiwan Jones
5 (148) Denarius Moore
6 (181) Richard Gordon
7 (241) David Ausberry

C-

Pittsburgh
Steelers

It's not like the AFC champs had a lot of glaring needs and they did especially well to get DE Cam Heyward in the late stages of the first round. 1 (31) Cameron Heyward
2 (63) Marcus Gilbert
3 (95) Curtis Brown
4 (128) Cortez Allen
5 (162) Chris Carter
6 (196) Keith Williams
7 (232) Baron Batch

B-

San Diego
Chargers

DT Corey Liuget was a good selection for the middle of the first round, and second-round CB/S Marcus Gilchrist bolsters the secondary. 1 (18) Corey Liuget
2 (50) Marcus Gilchrist
2 (61) Jonas Mouton
3 (82) Vincent Brown
3 (89) Shareece Wright
6 (183) Jordan Todman
6 (201) Steve Schilling
7 (234) Andrew Gachkar

B

Tennessee
Titans

Making Jake Locker the second QB to come off the board when Gabbert was available was a bold move when so many others rated Gabbert as more NFL-ready than Newton or Locker. It's the sort of move in which you can't afford to be wrong. 1 (8) Jake Locker
2 (39) Akeem Ayers
3 (77) Jurrell Casey
4 (109) Colin McCarthy
4 (130) Jamie Harper
5 (142) Karl Klug
6 (175) Byron Stingily
6 (212) Zach Clayton
7 (251) Tommie Campbell

C-

By Mark Maske - The Washington Post. Published May 1, 2011.