The 2016 NFL draft has concluded, with all 253 picks in the books. Read below for The Washington Post’s NFL team’s draft grades and in-depth analysis from all seven rounds.

Looking for Redskins coverage? Click here.


With players retiring early and others dealing with long-term medical issues, the issue is becoming impossible to ignore. The league’s newest players acknowledge the risk, and they’re largely okay with it. (Read More)

He only got into football a few years ago by watching Adrian Peterson videos on YouTube. Now they’re teammates. (Read More)

The record-breaking player is the first Navy quarterback drafted since Roger Staubach in 1965. (Read More)

Dak Prescott probably didn’t expect to have to explain himself to a teammate four years later. (Read More)

Yeah, this is getting weird. And fun. (Read More)

Redskins GM made some puzzling choices in the first three rounds, but his record speaks for itself. (Read More)

That was (not) awesome, baby! (Read More)

After trading out of the fourth round, the Redskins addressed a need along the defensive line. (Read More)

He’s the third Terps defensive lineman taken in the past two years. (Read More)

Redskins trade fourth-round pick for a pair of fifth-round picks from New Orleans. (Read More)

Here’s five players to keep an eye on during Day 3 of the NFL Draft. (Read More)

Six other quarterbacks were taken on Days 1 and 2. (Read More)

Cleveland passes up Connor Cook for the Southern Cal product. (Read More)

The NFL media cycle has already gone three rounds with Laremy Tunsil. (Read More)

Faulk wore his former teammate’s jersey on stage to make the team’s third-round draft pick — and a statement to the NFL. (Read More)

Tampa chose Florida State’s Roberto Aguayo. (Read More)

Penn State product joins Geno Smith and Bryce Petty on the Jets’ roster with last season’s starter, Ryan Fitzpatrick, still unsigned. (Read More)

Redskins add another player to the mix with former Hokie Kendall Fuller. (Read More)

UCLA linebacker goes to Jacksonville via the 36th overall pick. (Read More)

After going wide receiver in the first round, the Redskins met a need on defense. (Read More)

Davis becomes the highest Maryland player drafted since Torrey Smith in 2011. (Read More)

Injured Notre Dame linebacker becomes the 34th overall selection. (Read More)

But it’s not quite a free work trip. (Read  More)

Pass rusher finished his college career at Eastern Kentucky after leaving Ohio State. (Read More)

The commissioner’s odd comment probably didn’t come across the way he intended. (Read More)

Defense seems to be the theme for Friday. Could Myles Jack really fall to them in Round 2? (Read More)

His athleticism is lauded universally but teams seemed scared off by the risk of an injury derailing his career early on. (Read More)

Laremy Tunsil and Robert Nkemdiche both fell in the draft, while Tunsil admitted on live TV that a college coach gave him money. (Read More)

Corey Coleman could be the playmaking receiver Robert Griffin III needs to revive Cleveland’s offense. (Read More)

It was a good day for the crew from Columbus, Ohio. (Read More)

Laremy Tunsil’s Twitter feed featured a post of him smoking from a bong while wearing a gas mask. (Read More)

Did he pay half-price for the shirt or what? The OSU back bares his abs at the NFL draft. (Read More)

While two QBs are anticipated to lead tonight’s draft order, two veterans have been creating their own intrigue following trade demands. (Read More)


Round 1 is in the books, and it was quite an interesting chapter. Laremy Tunsil, arguably the draft’s top prospect in terms of pro potential, slid to the 13th overall pick after a Twitter post appeared on his account depicting the offensive tackle smoking from a bong while wearing a gas mask. Ole Miss had a rough night overall as Robert Nkemdiche, another uber-talented prospect, slipped all the way to No. 29 and the Arizona Cardinals.

Trades reshaped the first round at lightning speed, as the Broncos traded up to select Memphis quarterback Paxton Lynch late in the round. Meanwhile the San Francisco 49ers also traded back into the first round to take a guard most did not see as a first-round prospect.

Below is the blow-by-blow from Round 1, as recorded in real time by Washington Post NFL writer Mark Maske and draft analyst John Harris. Also included: A look back at the draft history of some of the best- and worst-drafting teams since 1996.

1. Los Angeles Rams (from Tennessee)

Team needs: QB, MLB, DB, WR, C

The pick: Jared Goff | QB | Cal

The Rams surprise no one and take Jared Goff, the Cal quarterback they were expected to take pretty much since they traded up to get the No. 1 pick from the Tennessee Titans. They did right by the league and did their best to maintain a little bit of suspense by keeping the pick under wraps, at least officially, until tonight. What else could they have done after being given the L.A. market by the NFL? Did they do the right thing by taking Goff over Carson Wentz? Who knows. Only time will tell on that, as history has demonstrated what an inexact science this is. But if the Rams are correct about Goff being a franchise QB-to-be, many of the other pieces needed for them to be a contender already are in place as they get settled in Los Angeles. — Mark Maske

What he brings: He’s the best pure passer in this draft, making throws to spots that others in this draft class have no chance to consistently strike. It would appear that the Northern California kid will move south to L.A. and be the face of the Los Angeles Rams, version 2.0.

As for the talent: The ball comes out of his hand hot and he does show that he has full field-progression ability. He doesn’t have a cannon arm and succeeds more with touch and ball-placement than he does NFL-type bullet throws. That said, his ball-placement is on par with some of the best I’ve studied over the past two decades. — John Harris

Early evaluation: The Rams made the right pre-draft move to trade up for the No. 1 pick, even with the significant cost of the draft choices they had to send to the Titans. Multiple pieces are already in place for the Rams to be a contender, and they simply had to take their shot at getting a franchise QB. They couldn’t have settled into the L.A. market with Case Keenum as their quarterback. Was Goff over Carson Wentz the right decision? The Rams have to cross their fingers and hope like heck that it was. But they did what they had to do. Grade: A –  — Maske

Draft history

2. Philadelphia Eagles (from Cleveland)

Team needs: CB, OL, QB, RB

The pick: Carson Wentz | QB | North Dakota State

It’s Carson Wentz going second to the Eagles after Jared Goff went first to the Rams. So far, things have gone as scripted. Sam Bradford doesn’t like it, and the Eagles don’t seem to care. Barring an abrupt reversal, they’ll have Wentz sit and learn for a season or two while Bradford plays. Now the draft-night intrigue begins with the No. 3 pick by the Chargers. Will they go with Jalen Ramsey or an offensive tackle, either Laremy Tunsil or Ronnie Stanley? — Mark Maske

What he brings: Wentz led the Bison to two consecutive FCS Championships, although he missed a huge portion of the 2015 season. His athleticism really pops off the page when watching him. He’s sort of a poor man’s Cam Newton. As a next level QB though, he has exactly what teams desire. He’s tall in the pocket, has a classic release, is poised vs. pressure for the most part, can make throws on the run, has a strong and accurate arm in terms of ball placement … I’m running out of commas. He came up big in the clutch last season, especially late in the FCS Championship game in 2014. — John Harris

Early evaluation: The overall strategy by the Eagles was curious, and not because it alienated Sam Bradford. That has nothing to do with it; he must play well to land his next lucrative contract. But why give Bradford a significant deal and then trade up for Wentz in the same offseason? The Eagles have created a QB issue for themselves. Long term, if Wentz is the real deal, it won’t matter. But shorter term, there’s room to wonder if the Eagles have improved themselves. Grade: C+ Maske

Draft history

3. San Diego Chargers

Team needs: OT, S, DL

The pick: Joey Bosa | DE | Ohio State

The Chargers surprise many and pass up Jalen Ramsey and both offensive tackles, Laremy Tunsil and Ronnie Stanley, to take Joey Bosa. Pass-rushers are difference-makers in the NFL, and Bosa is regarded as the top QB-chaser in this draft. But if Ramsey becomes a legendary NFL defensive back, this pick will be questioned for a long time. And Philip Rivers might end up wondering why the team didn’t upgrade his offensive line. — Mark Maske

What he brings: Bosa admitted that he wasn’t completely pleased with his combine performance. He didn’t run exceptionally well with a 4.86 in the 40. However, one area that caught my attention was that he clocked a 6.89 in the three-cone drill. That change of direction is key and he more than flashed that trait with that sub-7.0 second time.

His first-step burst off the ball is next-level ready, but he’s not as dynamic overall as the top edge rushers in previous drafts. That said, he’s still athletic for a nearly 270-pound man. He can get lazy against the run and against good tight ends and/or tackles. Still, you won’t find many warts on Bosa. But there are things he needs to work on going forward. — John Harris 

Early evaluation: Pass-rushers are difference-makers in the NFL. The Chargers get the player considered the top pass rusher in this draft class. But they left Jalen Ramsey, Laremy Tunsil and Ronnie Stanley on the board. What if Ramsey is a special player at cornerback or safety? Will Philip Rivers regret that the team didn’t upgrade his offensive line? Grade: B- Maske

Draft history

4. Dallas Cowboys

Team needs: DE, Secondary, RB

The pick: Ezekiel Elliott | RB | Ohio State

The Cowboys pass up Jalen Ramsey and go with Elliott. Interesting. Productive runners can be gotten long after the No. 4 pick in a draft. But the Rams were happy that they took Todd Gurley 10th last year. The Cowboys obviously believe Elliott is a special running back who can recreate what they had with DeMarco Murray two seasons ago. But if Ramsey has a Hall of Fame career, the Cowboys will remember the gift that they just opted against accepting. — Mark Maske

What he brings: At the combine, he tested beyond expectation, to be honest. He ran 4.47 in the 40 at 225 lb.pounds with a 1.58 10-yard split. That performance may have landed him in Dallas as the No. 4 pick. He is a tremendous athlete born of great athletic parents. He has vision to find the hole, a jump-cut to get clean, can burst past the safety in the alley and cutting ability to start to the sideline then upfield. He’s got the power to fight through a defensive back tackle effort too. — John Smith

Early evaluation: The Cowboys clearly are convinced that Elliott is a special running back and his presence will allow them to recreate what they had two seasons ago with DeMarco Murray. But productive NFL runners can be drafted long after the fourth overall selection. If Jalen Ramsey ends up being great, the Cowboys could regret not taking advantage of the gift they were given when he fell to them. Grade: B Maske

Draft history

5. Jacksonville Jaguars

Team needs: CB, OLB, OL, LB

The pick: Jalen Ramsey | CB/S  | Florida State

The Jaguars get a gift with Jalen Ramsey dropping to them after the Chargers and Cowboys passed him up. He could be a special player at either cornerback or safety. Some wonder about his relatively low number of interceptions. But few talent evaluators doubt that he will be a major NFL contributor. — Mark Maske

What he brings: He tested off the charts at the combine and deserved to go in the top-three of this draft. He played corner in 2015 but I think he’s best served as a playmaking safety going forward. That said, he’s an excellent corner but he can be in a different stratosphere at safety in the right scheme. He has length, football IQ and playmaking ability. His safety instincts are just so far off the charts, to be honest, that he’s at his best when his team moves him all over the formation. And teams can do that better when he’s at safety. — John Harris

Early evaluation: The Jaguars made the obvious move when Ramsey dropped to them for the No. 5 selection. That doesn’t make it any less right. Grade: A- — Maske

Draft history

6. Baltimore Ravens

Team needs: OL, DE, ILB, SS

The pick: Ronnie Stanley | OT | Notre Dame

It was clear the Ravens would go with an offensive tackle here. It’s interesting that it’s Ronnie Stanley and not Laremy Tunsil. If the Titans had kept the No. 1 pick instead of trading it to the Rams, Tunsil probably would have been their choice. Now he is falling toward the lower half of the top 10. But there were a number of teams that had Stanley over Tunsil, and obviously the Ravens were among them. — Mark Maske

What he brings: An outstandingly fluid athlete for a 315-pounder. He’s adept at getting separation on contact in pass-protection. His arm length is impressive and once he locks out, it’s over. Power defensive ends have no chance against him if they can’t make him move quickly upfield. The downside is he doesn’t get consistent movement in the run game. And Clemson’s Shaq Lawson troubled him with a combination of speed upfield and power-back inside counters– John Harris

Early evaluation: It’s not surprising that the Ravens emerged from this draft with a potential franchise left tackle. It is a bit surprising that they chose Ramsey over Laremy Tunsil with both available for the No. 6 selection. Tunsil’s difficult night, including the appearance of the instantly infamous Twitter video just before the draft, was well documented. But some teams already had Stanley ranked ahead of Tunsil. Grade: B — Maske

7. San Francisco 49ers

Team needs: QB, OT, WR, CB

The pick: DeForest Buckner | DE | Oregon

Chip Kelly again gets an Oregon player as the 49ers go with DeForest Buckner. The Niners become the first truly QB-needy team to pass on Memphis QB Paxton Lynch. But Buckner is a very solid pick who should be a productive NFL defensive lineman. — Mark Maske

What he brings: He’s known for his violent hands and his arms that just don’t end. There are two different ways to look at Buckner though. In terms of his size, he has physical gifts off the charts. Athletically, I don’t see the twitchy, burst off the snap sort of skills. It’s not a deal-breaker at all but he’s not the next coming of JJ Watt. — John Harris

Early evaluation: The 49ers get a former Oregon player in Buckner. He was well worth the seventh selection. But they traded back up into the opening round to draft a guard, in Garnett, not widely viewed as a likely first-round pick. That move made little sense. Grade: C- — Maske

Draft history

8. Tennessee Titans (from Cleveland)

Team needs: OT, S, CB

The pick: Jack Conklin | OT | Michigan State

The Titans, after trading down from No. 1 to No. 15, trade back up to eighth and take Jack Conklin. Tennessee might have taken Laremy Tunsil at No. 1, and they just had a chance to take him at No. 8. But they pass him up, and you have to wonder how much tonight’s Twitter controversy is playing into Tunsil’s plummet. Whatever the case, the Titans bolster their offensive line for Marcus Mariota. Are the Browns ever going to actually pick? — Mark Maske

What he brings: His measurables got everyone’s attention. He had one of the better OL short shuttle times, registering 4.57 seconds. He left little doubt he’s ready to be one of the first offensive linemen off the board. Has allowed only 2.5 sacks in his first 27 career games. He doesn’t always have great feet — they’ll stop on contact, which keeps him from finishing blocks. I would like to see him more under control getting to the second level, but he’s nasty and has a true offensive lineman demeanor. — John Harris

Early evaluation: Tennessee still ended up with an offensive tackle to help safeguard second-year quarterback Marcus Mariota after adding picks by trading out of No. 1. Grade: B+ — Maske

9. Chicago Bears (from Tampa Bay)

Team needs: TE, Edge rusher, OT, CB

The pick: Leonard Floyd | OLB | Georgia

The Bears move up for Leonard Floyd, the player that some (including me) projected them to get at 11th. He should be a solid contributor on defense. But few envisioned him as a top-10 pick. Players such as Myles Jack and, especially, Laremy Tunsil are falling below where they were expected to be chosen. — Mark Maske

What he brings: Overall at the combine, Floyd showed what many of us knew – he’s a freaky, long and agile athlete. He showed up at 244 pounds, ran 4.60 in the 40, had a 39.5-inch vertical and a 10-foot-7-inch broad jump. He gives me a bit of a poor man’s Aldon Smith vibe. I love the potential, his length and his relentless nature. — John Harris

Early evaluation: Chicago ended up with a solid addition to its defense. But did the Bears really have to trade up to make that happen? Grade: B- — Maske

10. New York Giants

Team needs: OL, ILB, FS, DE

The pick: Eli Apple | CB | Ohio State

That’s a mild surprise with the Giants taking Eli Apple at 10th. They just spent huge money to sign a veteran cornerback, Janoris Jenkins, in free agency. The defense clearly needed to be upgraded, and the Giants continue to devote resources to that in the draft following their free agent spending spree. — Mark Maske

What he brings: Any trepidation I had about his high ranking in my Top 50 went out the window after after the combine. With long arms and good feed, this guy looks the part more than any other CB in this draft class. He’s raw though. He tends to get sloppy with his technique. His hips, feet, change of direction are all next level though. He can play press and bail coverage and he runs and mirrors receivers without much effort. His instincts are great too He anticipates route combinations extremely well. — John Harris

Early evaluation: The Giants spent big money in free agency to attempt to fix their defense. One of those expensive additions was cornerback Jenkins. So it’s a bit surprising that they used the 10th choice on a cornerback, and some regarded that selection as a bit of a stretch for Apple. Still, that defense needed plenty of work. Grade: B- — Maske

11. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (from Chicago)

Team needs: DE, C, CB, S

The pick: Vernon Hargreaves III | CB | Florida

The Buccaneers trade back two spots and still get the player, Vernon Hargreaves, that many (including me) thought they’d get at No. 9. It’s the right move for them. He has the talent to step right in and play immediately. — Mark Maske

What he brings: Other than an average 4.50 in the 40, he solidified a spot in the top-12 of the draft at the combine, where he displayed plenty of explosiveness. Receivers throughout the SEC have said facing Hargreaves is the most stern test of their season. He did struggle against former Alabama star WR Amari Cooper in 2014, but Cooper said Hargreaves was the toughest guy he faced. — John Harris

Early evaluation: When you can move back and still get your top target, that’s a shrewd move. Grade: B+ — Maske

12. New Orleans Saints

Team needs: DL/Edge rusher, Interior OL, WR, CB

The pick: Sheldon Rankins | DT/DE | Louisville

The Saints once were among the teams linked to Paxton Lynch. But they simply had to continue to try to fix their defense and that’s what they did by selecting Sheldon Rankins. — Mark Maske

What he brings: He was dominant at the Senior Bowl, although he got a bit dinged up later in the week. His build, quickness and ability to penetrate gave the opposing line trouble all week long. He plays with a ton of leverage and can rock a guard/center and walk him back into the QB. He flaunts a powerful base and you’re not going to move him off the ball. Even against double teams, he just clogs up the space without getting moved. — John Harris

Early evaluation: A New Orleans defense that seems perpetually in need of help gets a player who should make things better. Grade: B — Maske

Draft history

13. Miami Dolphins (from Philadelphia)

Team needs: OT, RB, OLB, Young edge rusher

The pick: Laremy Tunsil | OT | Ole Miss

So Laremy Tunsil’s wait is over as he goes 13th to the Dolphins. That’s 12 spots lower than he might have gone if the Titans had retained the No. 1 pick. The Twitter video that surfaced just before the draft tonight certainly didn’t help. But he is a very talented offensive tackle. This ends up appearing to be a seemingly high-risk, potentially high-reward move for Miami. — Mark Maske

What he brings: Based solely on football ability, he’s the class of the 2016 draft class. But his slide had nothing to do with that and everything to do with that video that seemed to show him using drugs. He’s a bona fide left tackle and I’ve thought that since his first start as a true freshman in 2013. He is exacxtly what an NFL left tackle looks like. He missed half of the 2015 season after being suspended due to an NCAA inquiry. He also had a season-ending injury in 2014 Peach Bowl the year prior. When he’s healthy, he plays with great knee bend, a powerful base and he’s quick and explosive in all of his movements. — John Harris

Early evaluation: It was a night that largely was about Tunsil. The Dolphins get a player who might have gone first overall with the 13th choice. That could be a major steal. But the information that came out Thursday night about Tunsil clearly was enough to make other NFL teams wary. Grade: B — Maske

Draft history

14. Oakland Raiders

Team needs: OT, S, CB, Interior DL

The pick: Karl Joseph | S | West Virginia

That’s a significant surprise by the Raiders. Talent evaluators praise Karl Joseph’s hard-hitting ways at safety. But his pass-coverage skills are questioned by some, and few prognosticators had him going this early in the draft. — Mark Maske

What he brings: Much improved throughout his career in coverage, his instincts and football smarts have assisted him greatly in that area. He’s a fearless and ruthless hitter and almost always looking for the big hit. He doesn’t always wrap up after contact, throwing a shoulder into a ball carrier instead of making a textbook tackle. He’s not going to be a man-cover type, but he has some range in the middle of the field. He loves the game and consistently studies it. John Harris

Early evaluation: Some applauded the Raiders’ selection of the hard-hitting safety. But questions have been raised by some observers about his pass coverage. That’s ominous in today’s pass-happy NFL. Grade: C- — Maske

15. Cleveland Browns (from Tennessee)

Team needs: QB, WR, RB, T, S

The pick: Corey Coleman | WR | Baylor

The Browns finally make a pick and give some help to Robert Griffin III by selecting speedy wide receiver (and fellow Baylor alum) Corey Coleman. He becomes the first wideout taken in this draft and he gives Cleveland a potential No. 1 receiver to replace Josh Gordon, who still hasn’t been reinstated by the NFL. But after trading down twice, the Browns still are no closer to having a reliable quarterback of the future. — Mark Maske

What he brings: There’s potential he goes BOOM at any time. He can catch and run, high point 50/50 balls and run under downfield bombs. He’s an adequate route runner, and needs to be disciplined enough to finish it. When he runs his hitch or curl route, his head is looking back before he reaches top of the route, and he lazily gets into his slant route. As such, his route-running technique needs work. Drafting Coleman puts defenses on vertical ball notice though. John Harris

Early evaluation: Trading down twice, once before the draft and again Thursday, added picks but came at a cost. The selection of Coleman gives them a prospective No. 1 receiver, but still lack a potential franchise quarterback and the Browns still have done nothing to address that issue, other than signing Robert Griffin III in free agency. Grade: C+ — Maske

16. Detroit Lions

Team needs: OT, MLB, CB

The pick: Taylor Decker | T | Ohio State

Taylor Decker was the obvious choice here for the Lions. They absolutely had to have an offensive tackle to help in safeguarding Matthew Stafford. That’s four Ohio State players in the draft’s first 16 picks after Joey Bosa, Ezekiel Elliott and Eli Apple went in the top 10. — Mark Maske

What he brings: He played right tackle in 2013 and got completely destroyed by current Oakland Raider star Khalil Mack in his first start … that’s a tough way to break into the college ranks though. He’s improved tremendously since that opening game, but I don’t think he’ll succeed at left tackle going forward, nor does he strike me as a guard. He moves well enough to be a tackle, but he can’t or won’t play the left side. He’s got a solid technique working the arc, his kickstep and punch are tight, he stays square to the rusher, but the one thing that would make his technique nearly flawless is if he could drop his butt, sit back and punch more effectively. John Harris

Early evaluation: Detroit desperately needed offensive line help and got it, choosing Decker precisely when he should have been selected. Grade: B — Maske

Draft history

17. Atlanta Falcons

Team needs: Edge, LB, S, G

The pick: Keanu Neal | S | Florida

Is Dan Quinn, the former Seattle defensive coordinator now the head coach in Atlanta, trying to get his version of Kam Chancellor or Earl Thomas with the Falcons by drafting Keanu Neal? It’s a surprise that two pure safeties (in addition to Jalen Ramsey) have been taken in the first 17 picks. — Mark Maske

What he brings: Physically impressive at a little over 6-foot and 211 pounds, he put together some strong explosive measurements at the combine. Those around the Florida program were disappointed to lose Neal to the NFL. He was third on the team with 96 tackles (only behind the team’s two starting inside linebackers) and posted four interceptions over the past two seasons. He has length and range, but this dude will strike with a bite of a rattlesnake. He will struggle in man coverage a bit early in his NFL career, but he’s a hitter. — John Harris

Early evaluation: The No. 17 pick seems high, even if he does have “Legion of Boom”-caliber upside. Grade: B- — Maske

Draft history

18. Indianapolis Colts

Team needs: G, C, T, ILB

The pick: Ryan Kelly | C | Alabama

The Colts give Andrew Luck a potential mainstay of a center by selecting Ryan Kelly. Is the 18th pick perhaps a little bit too soon to take a center? Maybe. But few talent evaluators question Kelly’s skills. It is interesting that Myles Jack continues to fall through the first round, presumably because of the concerns about the durability of his knee. — Mark Maske

What he brings: Deservedly the first center off the board after showing athleticism, in combination to his overall football skill set. He’s a solid technician that plays with good base and power in the run game. He has excellent technique though and an extremely football intelligent player. — John Harris

Early evaluation: It’s a good move to protect Andrew Luck, but a center this early in the draft feels like a reach for a need. Grade: B – — Maske

Draft history

19. Buffalo Bills

Team needs: DE, OT, OLB, QB

The pick: Shaq Lawson | DE | Clemson

The Bills get a potential defensive play-maker in Shaq Lawson. That’s a good value pick for them at 19th. You have to wonder if they considered Robert Nkemdiche here. They haven’t been reluctant, after all, to add talented players with off-field issues. The Jets are next at 20th. Will they take Paxton Lynch? — Mark Maske

What he brings: At first glance, the first thing that stands out is his length. He carries his weight well as he doesn’t look like a 275-pounder, and appears much lighter. I’m not sure he has the quicks to drop and rush on a consistent basis, and I’m not sure he could add 12-to-20 pounds to be a 3-4 DE. Overall, he’s excellent against the run, uses his length to get separation and then has the ability to chase and run after the ball-carrier. And he’s as tough as the day is long. — John Harris

Early evaluation: Buffalo gets a potential defensive play-maker and in Rex Ryan’s hands that’s a good asset. Grade: B — Maske

20. New York Jets

Team needs: OT, ILB, OLB, QB

The pick: Darron Lee | OLB | Ohio State

The Jets had their chance to address their quarterback situation by taking Paxton Lynch. They didn’t do it, going instead with Darron Lee. There’s nothing wrong with the pick. He should help the defense. But it’s a quarterback-centric league, and the Jets’ QB situation remains in limbo. They haven’t re-signed Ryan Fitzpatrick. They haven’t traded (so far) for Colin Kaepernick. They have Geno Smith and Bryce Petty on the roster. Is that good enough for a team that just missed the AFC playoffs last season? It doesn’t seem like it. The Jets either are being very patient or very foolish about this, depending on your perspective. — Mark Maske

What he brings: The scouting community is mixed on Lee, it seems, and that doesn’t make a ton of sense to me. The NFL has become an offensively dominated space/speed game. As such, Lee is the defensive chess piece to counter what’s taking place on that side of the ball. He has some size and moves likes a safety. There’s a lot to like in his versatility. — John Harris

Early evaluation: No one has told the Jets, apparently, that this is a QB-centric league. They still have time to fix their quarterback situation. But until they do, they don’t get the benefit of the doubt, even though there was nothing exactly wrong with the choice of Lee. There’s a reason why the Broncos, who got their QB Thursday night, win Super Bowls and the Jets don’t. Grade D+ — Maske

Draft history

21. Houston Texans (from Washington)

Team needs: Speed (everywhere), Interior OL, DE

The pick: Will Fuller | WR | Notre Dame

The Texans trade up a spot (with the Redskins) and get a wide receiver to go with DeAndre Hopkins. That was expected. It is interesting that their wideout of choice here was Will Fuller, not Josh Doctson or Laquon Treadwell. — Mark Maske

What he brings: One number tells you all you need to know: 4.32. He flew down the Lucas Oil Stadium track with the second best time of the entire combine. Game Over. He had a dominating 2014 season in South Bend but was even better in 2015, making every clutch catch in every tight situation in every close game during the season. He doesn’t always trust his hands and will leap to make body catches, instead of snatching the rock out of the air. Combined with a lack of size, that could work against him. — John Harris

Early evaluation: The trade up one pick just seems a little odd, but the Texans get a speedy receiver to pair with Hopkins and give Brock Osweiler two good targets. Grade: B — Maske

22. Washington Redskins (from Houston)

Team needs: DL, C, ILB, WR

The pick: Josh Doctson | WR | TCU

The Redskins add at a position of strength by taking Josh Doctson when they already have DeSean Jackson, Pierre Garcon and Jamison Crowder at receiver. This is an illustration that draft picks are not made only for one season. The Redskins have an obvious need for a run-stuffing defensive lineman. But this draft is deep along the defensive line and the Redskins can come back to that.

Elsewhere in the draft, Paxton Lynch and Myles Jack remain available. Will the Broncos be able to get their quarterback? At what point will Jack’s obvious talent outweigh the concerns about the durability of his knee? — Mark Maske

What he brings: He’s fast enough, but his game is more as an acrobatic, high-point, 50/50-ball receiver. Quite simply, if the ball is anywhere near him, he’ll come down with it. Washington will love him down in the red zone. He reminds me of Texans WR DeAndre Hopkins with his hands and body control near the end zone. I rarely saw college DBs push him off the spot or impede his routes.

Early evaluation: The defense still needs work and the Redskins have talent and depth at wideout. But this is a long-term play, and there still is time in this draft to address the needs on defense. Grade: B — Maske

Draft history

23. Minnesota Vikings

Team needs: WR, OL

The pick: Laquon Treadwell | WR | Mississippi

The Vikings selecting Laquon Treadwell is a sensible, far-from-surprising choice. They needed another wide receiver to help their young quarterback, Teddy Bridgewater, and this was the portion of the opening round in which the wideouts were expected to come off the board quickly. Unfortunately for the Bengals, who are up next and lost Marvin Jones and Mohamed Sanu in free agency, the top four wide receivers are now gone. — Mark Maske

What he brings: He’s the prototype, next-level big receiver, but he won’t run away from cornerbacks or get a ton of separation in his routes. He’s excellent after the catch but he has ability to make defensive backs and linebackers miss in space. He high-points the football down the field and he really is more of a downfield receiver. He can adjust to any throw against any coverage and is very dynamic.John Harris

Early evaluation: The Vikings needed a receiver and got a potentially very good one. Grade: B — Maske

24. Cincinnati Bengals

Team needs: WR, OLB, DT, OL

The pick: William Jackson III | CB | Houston

It figured that the Bengals would consider a wide receiver after losing Marvin Jones and Mohamed Sanu in free agency. But the top four wideouts (Corey Coleman, Will Fuller, Josh Doctson and Laquon Treadwell) already are gone. The Redskins might have messed things up for Cincinnati by taking Doctson. Getting William Jackson makes sense under the circumstances. — Mark Maske

What he brings: Long and rangy and confident at every level of the passing game. He’s a defensive back that wants to be involved in run support. He doesn’t pack a wallop, but doesn’t shy from contact either. His trail technique needs a little work and gets lazy in zone coverage. But I’m not playing him in zone going forward. I want him challenging receivers with his length and size, all day, every day. — John Harris

Early evaluation: Many thought the Bengals would take a wide receiver but they had the misfortune of picking just after wideouts were taken with three straight picks. Instead, they went with a cornerback who was well worth the 24th selection. Grade: B+ — Maske

25. Pittsburgh Steelers

Team needs: CB, OT, TE, NT

The pick: Artie Burns | CB | Miami

It’s no surprise whatsoever that the Steelers went with a cornerback. With William Jackson gone, getting Artie Burns is the right move for them. The Broncos have traded up to 26th, presumably to take a quarterback. Paxton Lynch? If not Lynch, then maybe Connor Cook. — Mark Maske

What he brings: Long arms are a major asset and advantage for the third-year junior. His track background has given him excellent recovery speed. He’s not going to be a star in run support but not afraid of contact. I love his ability to find the football in the air and contest the multitude of passes that he does. He might not be a well-known name, and I had him as a Day 2 selection, but he can play. — John Harris

Early evaluation: Pittsburgh needed help in the secondary and added a cornerback who could turn out to be a significant contributor. Grade: B — Maske

Draft history

26. Denver Broncos (from Seattle)

Team needs: QB, OT, ILB

The pick: Paxton Lynch | QB | Memphis

The Broncos have their quarterback. They traded up five spots in the opening round to get Paxton Lynch of Memphis with the 26th overall selection. After losing Peyton Manning to retirement and Brock Osweiler to free agency, the Super Bowl champs now have traded for Mark Sanchez and drafted Lynch. They apparently explored possible trades for Colin Kaepernick and Sam Bradford without completing either deal. It remains to be seen if those trade deliberations are off for good. Is Lynch ready to start as a rookie? Some talent evaluators say no. If not, Sanchez potentially could be the temporary starter. Lynch, at 6-foot-7, is a big quarterback in the mold of Osweiler. Jon Gruden has likened Lynch’s size and athleticism to the physical traits possessed by Cam Newton. — Mark Maske

What he brings: The tall pocket passer, or so it seems. My broadcast partner, Andre Ware, called Memphis’s win over Ole Miss and said, “That joker can make any throw out on the field. Any. Throw.” He does rush some throws at times and the ball placement can be off when he’s out of rhythm. But he has a plus arm. — John Harris

Early evaluation: Chief roster architect John Elway didn’t panic when Peyton Manning retired and Brock Osweiler exited in free agency. He took his time. He explored possible trades and found them too expensive. He traded earlier for Mark Sanchez and when he had his chance Thursday night to trade up to draft Lynch, he seized the opportunity. Maybe the Broncos still have another QB move in them; maybe they don’t. But Elway has given the team an intriguing prospect for the future and a temporary starter if needed. Grade: A — Maske

27. Green Bay Packers

Team needs: OLB, DE, Pass-catching TE

The pick: Kenny Clark | DT | UCLA

It’s no shock the Packers take a defensive tackle, with B.J. Raji not playing this season. Going with Kenny Clark is a much safer pick than selecting the talented Robert Nkemdiche would have been, given his off-field issues. Green Bay also goes with Clark over Andrew Billings, Jarran Reed and A’Shawn Robinson. — Mark Maske

What he brings: Tipping the scales at 314 pounds and running a 5.06 40-yard dash? Yeah, that’s impressive. He put up 29 reps of 225 pounds on the bench and had a 28.5-inch vertical leap. But, it was doing field work where he really stood out. His power and quickness were highly evident at the combine. He remains in constant motion, never takes plays off and is ultra quick up the field. He plays the nose a good majority of the time but with his strength he could move out to star as a 3-4 DE 4- or 5-technique in due time. — John Harris

Early evaluation: This pick is fine, but will be judged in time against how those other three interior defensive linemen (Billings, Reed and Robinson) perform in the NFL. Grade: B- — Maske

Draft history

28. San Francisco 49ers (from Kansas City)

Team needs: QB, OT, WR, CB

The pick: Joshua Garnett | OG | Stanford

The 49ers traded back up into the first round to take a guard? Really? Has Chip Kelly staged another coup and taken over GM duties in another organization? — Mark Maske

What he brings: No. 62 on my board, so this feels high. At the Senior Bowl, Garnett faced a ton of big-time interior defensive stalwarts. He was good in the run game for the most part, but his pass protection left a bit to be desired. When run-blocking he will straight up maul defenders. He’s not horribly fleet of foot but can pull to the opposite side and get a helmet on a different colored jersey. — John Harris

Early evaluation: See pick No. 7.

29. Arizona Cardinals

Team needs: DT, S, C, CB

The pick: Robert Nkemdiche | DE/DT | Ole Miss

So Robert Nkemdiche gets taken in the first round after all. He is among the most talented players in this draft and is a potentially dominant defensive lineman. But his off-field issues, including his suspension from the Sugar Bowl after his hotel-room fall, clearly scared off many teams. Bruce Arians is among the league’s best and most player-friendly coaches. If he can make things work with Nkemdiche, this pick will end up being a steal for the Cardinals. — Mark Maske

What he brings: He can dominate when he wants to. His power is at a completely different level, but it’s kept him from learning how to effectively use his hands or learn effective ways of getting off blocks to rush the passer. He plays with low pad level and is built like a tank. He knifes into the backfield with his quickness. Upside and potential? Certainly. Major question marks? Unfortunately yes. — John Harris

Early evaluation: By this point in the first round, Nkemdiche’s talent makes the risk of taking him, given his off-field issues, worth it. Grade: B+ — Maske

30. Carolina Panthers

Team needs: OT, DE, RB, CB

The pick: Vernon Butler | DT | La. Tech

The Panthers removed their franchise-player tag from cornerback Josh Norman in part because they prefer to devote their resources on defense to fortifying their front seven. That was on display with this pick. Never mind that Norman is gone and there is a clear need at cornerback. Carolina added to a position of strength, at defensive tackle, by choosing Vernon Butler. — Mark Maske

What he brings: Apparently, he really impressed teams with his interview sessions at the combine. There wasn’t much in his testing results that got much attention, but he did shine at the Senior Bowl. He’s so quick upfield he gave offensive line fits in 11-on-11 drills against the run. He struggled just a bit rushing the passer from different angles. Muhammed Wilkerson isn’t a bad comparable. John Harris

Early evaluation: You have to say this for the Panthers: They stick to their plan. Carolina believes in building through its defensive line and kept right on doing it. Grade: B- — Maske

Draft history

31. Seattle Seahawks (from Denver)

Team needs: DT, G, T, CB

The pick: Germain Ifedi | OT/OG | Texas A&M

Russell Wilson spent the early portions of last season under virtually constant pressure from opposing pass rushers. So it makes perfect sense that the Seahawks, after trading down in the first round, use the final pick of the draft’s opening night to fortify Wilson’s offensive line. Germain Ifedi could end up playing guard rather than tackle at the NFL level. But he certainly should help.

The opening round ends without UCLA linebacker Myles Jack, one the most talented players available, being chosen, apparently over concerns about the durability of a knee that eventually could require microfracture surgery. It sets the stage for some Round 2 intrigue on Friday. — Mark Maske

What he brings: His three-foot-long arms got everyone’s attention at the combine, but he still has to learn how to use them. I was surprised, a bit, that he decided to declare for the draft. He’s seemingly best suited to be a guard, but he wasn’t going to play guard at A&M in 2016, so it might’ve been best to take off for the NFL. Honestly, he didn’t have the best season in 2015. I don’t care, at all, for the technique taught to the Aggies linemen, which seemed to hinder Ifedi at times throughout the season. Last year, he got a second-round grade from the NFL Draft Advisory Committee.John Harris

Early evaluation: Seattle’s offensive line needed work and the Seahawks, after trading down, added to that group. The question is whether Ifedi will be a tackle or a guard at the NFL level. If it’s the latter, it’s a reach. Grade: B- — Maske


No, it’s not a projection of who’s going where. Rather, the perfect draft demonstrates how every team can extract the maximum value out of each of their picks based on positional need and Pro Football Focus’s player rankings. (Read More)

Some teams seem to always strike gold on draft day, while others just find rocks. (We’re looking at you, Cleveland.) Revisit the past 20 NFL drafts to see how adept every team has been at mining top talent. (Read More)

If an NFL franchise were a body, draft history would be a vital sign. It doesn’t tell you everything that’s going good or bad with the team, but it can distinguish a chronic condition from a one-time misdiagnosis of Ryan Leaf. In the accompanying interactive, you can analyze the past 20 years of any team’s draft picks in all sorts of ways. (Read More)

Two Hall-of-Fame GMs lay out the secrets to their highly successful strategies. (Read More)

The Rams need a QB? No kidding. But what else do they need to put them over the top? Pro Football Focus looks at every roster to find fixes for some key areas. (Read More)

Post draft analyst John Harris breaks down all the top prospects for 2016. (Read More)

The former Ohio State quarterback was once on top of the college football world, now he’s barely a blip on the draft radar. (Read More)

A sneaky draft strategy could save the Browns from QB purgatory. (Read More)

The Notre Dame linebacker remains positive after a knee injury leaves his pro future in doubt. But that was just part of a dismal run up to the draft. (Read More)

The Cowboys have a great opportunity to make use of an uncharacteristically high draft pick. Here’s how they can best capitalize on their big chance. (Read More)

Some teams are closer to a title than others. Here are the choicest draft choices for the 12 teams that reached the 2015 playoffs. (Read More)


Here’s how the weekend could play out for Washington from Round 1 right through Saturday’s final pick. (Read More)

Insider’s draft overviews: QB | RB |  WROL | DL| LBCB | S
What Washington should do at QB, RBWROLDL, LBCB & S
Detailed top 10s: QB | RB | WR | TE | OL | DLLB | Rushers | CB