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2017 NFL draft grades: Texans, Steelers grab high marks; Bears, Raiders need improvement

The Browns made Myles Garrett the No. 1 overall pick (Tony Gutierrez/Associated Press)

The selections have been made, the hats have been donned and players are looking toward rookie minicamps. How did each team do through all seven rounds of the 2017 NFL draft? Here are the grades, team-by-team:

AFC East

Buffalo Bills

Analysis: It can be debated whether the Bills, with the NFL playoffs such a distant memory for them, should be trading down in the first round rather than taking a seize-the-moment approach. But they are in Year 1 of the Sean McDermott coaching regime, so maybe that buys them some time and good will. And they did get a good CB prospect, in Tre’Davious White, after moving down to No. 27, in addition to emerging from this draft with an additional first-rounder next year. Both second-rounders, WR Zay Jones and offensive lineman Dion Dawkins, should help. QB Nathan Peterman could end up being a superb fifth-round choice. Former NFL coach Jon Gruden said before the draft that Peterman is better prepared to play early in his pro career than any other QB available. Grade: B

Miami Dolphins

Analysis: The Dolphins focused in the early rounds on their defense. LB Charles Harris, taken 22nd overall, should fit in well. It could be argued, though, that the Dolphins should have continued their trend of devoting major resources to their offensive line and taken G Forrest Lamp with that choice. They did come back in the fifth round to get a guard, Isaac Asiata. Grade: B-

Round 1 NFL draft grades: 49ers, Texans ace Thursday’s test

New England Patriots

Analysis: It must be taken into consideration that the Patriots, via a trade earlier this offseason with the Saints, turned the No. 32 overall pick into WR Brandin Cooks. That will give them more production than they reasonably could have expected from any rookie taken on the final selection of the opening round. They turned a second-rounder, via an earlier trade with Carolina that involved New England receiving a third-rounder, into DE Kony Ealy. They opted against trading backup QB Jimmy Garoppolo before or during the draft for what undoubtedly would have been a handsome package of picks. In terms of the picks they actually used, the Patriots didn’t participate until the third round and it’s unclear if they procured much immediate help. The best news? Deflategate officially, undeniably came to a close with the fourth-round choice that the Patriots forfeited Saturday. Grade: B

New York Jets

Analysis: The Jets certainly liked their safeties and wide receivers in this draft, taking two of each in their first four selections. Should they have addressed the QB position? Perhaps. But Mitchell Trubisky was gone by the time they picked at No. 6 and it could be argued that neither Deshaun Watson nor Patrick Mahomes was worthy of that selection. Safety Jamal Adams certainly was worthy of it, and he should be a difference-maker in the Jets’ secondary. Third-round WR ArDarius Stewart should be an asset to the offense. Grade: B

AFC North

Baltimore Ravens

Analysis: The Ravens were not bashful about focusing on their defense, devoting four picks in the opening three rounds to that side of the football. They did well. They bolstered the secondary with first-round CB Marlon Humphrey, giving GM Ozzie Newsome one of his beloved Alabama players. Third-round DE Chris Wormley was a very good value. The Ravens also added two prospective contributors at LB in second-rounder Tyus Bowser third-rounder Tim Williams, another Alabama product. Grade: B

Cincinnati Bengals

Analysis: A number of NFL teams had RB Joe Mixon off their draft boards because of the 2014 incident in which he punched a woman and broke several bones in her face. The Bengals used a second-round pick on him. Putting aside the debate of whether you’d want him representing your franchise or whether you instead believe unequivocally in second chances, the draft-related issue is whether it was prudent to use a second-rounder on a player so devalued by a significant number of other teams. First-round WR John Ross is a potential game-breaker. But some observers have concerns about his durability and it’s questionable whether the Bengals needed to use the ninth overall selection to get him. It’s possible that the Bengals transformed their offense. But, given the risks, did they maximize the value of their picks? Grade: C-

Cleveland Browns

Analysis: The Browns finally got their QB by taking DeShone Kizer with the 20th pick of the second round. Until that point, it was beginning to seem as if they were going out of their way to avoid trying to land their franchise QB, having traded the No. 2 overall choice last year that the Eagles used for Carson Wentz and then trading the 12th selection Thursday that the Texans used for Deshaun Watson. Make no mistake: The Browns got good players, and using the top overall pick on Myles Garrett was the right move. Fellow first-rounders Jabrill Peppers and David Njoku will help, and Larry Ogunjobi is a good third-round value. But you’re supposed to get good players when you possess five of the first 65 picks. The Browns needed to address their QB situation, and it’s debatable whether getting Kizer is good enough. Cleveland also used a sixth-round choice on DT Caleb Brantley, who is facing a misdemeanor battery charge for allegedly punching a woman. Grade: C+

The Cleveland Browns finally get a QB, taking DeShone Kizer in second round of NFL draft

Pittsburgh Steelers

Analysis: T.J. Watt was worth a first-round pick, and second-round WR JuJu Smith-Schuster could carve out a role in Pittsburgh’s powerful offense. But the key selection here could end up being fourth-round QB Joshua Dobbs. The Steelers have struggled to find a capable backup to Ben Roethlisberger and it’s possible that he could become the guy to fill in capably for a few games per season whenever Roethlisberger suffers the consequences of his rugged playing style. Grade: B+

AFC South

Houston Texans

Analysis: The trade up to get Deshaun Watson with the 12th choice was bold and fully justified. Maybe Tom Savage will remain the starter at QB entering the season. Maybe not. But the Texans are, in many ways, a Super Bowl-ready team and they needed another potentially attractive option at QB. Watson gives them that. Second-round LB Zach Cunningham and third-round RB D’Onta Foreman also could help. Grade: A

Indianapolis Colts

Analysis: The Colts needed only their first two picks to completely remake their secondary. They were very fortunate in the first round when S Malik Hooker dropped to them at No. 15. He was thought by many observers to be worthy of being taken in the top 10. Second-round CB Quincy Wilson also could become a mainstay in the defensive backfield. Grade: B+

Jacksonville Jaguars

Analysis: It’s not difficult to envision RB Leonard Fournette becoming the NFL’s offensive rookie of the year. He should be the centerpiece of the Jacksonville offense and take pressure off beleaguered QB Blake Bortles. It’s back in style for NFL teams to use lofty draft choices on top-shelf runners, as with the Cowboys and Ezekiel Elliott last year, and this should pay off for the Jaguars. It wasn’t a good draft at all for offensive lineman. But getting T Cam Robinson with the second pick of Round 2 also could be a big move for Jacksonville. He seems capable of starting at either tackle spot or guard. Grade: A-

Jaguars pick Dede Westbrook even though an NFL scout called him a ‘degenerate’

Tennessee Titans

Analysis: The Titans needed to emerge from Round 1 with a wide receiver and a cornerback, and they did. The questions are whether WR Corey Davis was worth the No. 5 overall choice and whether Adoree’ Jackson was the right CB to take at No. 18. Tennessee doubled up at WR with third-rounder Taywan Taylor, giving plenty of help to third-year QB Marcus Mariota. Grade: B-

AFC West

Denver Broncos

Analysis: The Broncos were right to take an offensive tackle in the first round. Did they get the right one by taking Garett Bolles over Ryan Ramczyk and Cam Robinson? That remains to be seen. Denver’s most productive choice in the draft eventually might end up being TE Jake Butt, who fell to the fifth round after suffering a torn anterior cruciate ligament in the Orange Bowl. Grade: B-

Kansas City Chiefs

Analysis: Trading up 17 spots in the first round to get Patrick Mahomes was costly but if it gives the Chiefs a down-the-road solution at QB, it was worth it. For now, he can sit, wait and learn as Alex Smith’s understudy. That’s the difference between what the Chiefs did and what the Bears did: With Kansas City, there is a sensible overall QB plan in place. Third-round RB Kareem Hunt could play a role but it’s not clear that second-round DE Tanoh Kpassagnon will be ready in the short-term to turn his imposing size and considerable athletic ability into NFL production. Grade: B

NFL Network’s Mike Mayock goes bananas over orangutans making draft picks

Los Angeles Chargers

Analysis: The Chargers added potential contributors throughout their draft class, even into the final day’s picks with safeties Rayshawn Jenkins and Desmond King. They got the wide receiver regarded by many as the draft’s best, Mike Williams, in the opening round and perhaps the draft’s top available offensive lineman, guard Forrest Lamp, early in the second round. Some draft analysts regard Lamp as a potential Pro Bowler on the interior of the offensive line in the mold of the Cowboys’ Zack Martin. Grade: B+

Oakland Raiders

Analysis: Some within the league were surprised that the Raiders used a first-round pick on Gareon Conley with him being investigated for a sexual assault allegation in Cleveland. He says he is innocent and, clearly, the Raiders believe him. His on-field talent was well worth a first-round choice but was using such an early selection justified, given the circumstances? The Raiders did get a good second-round value in S Obi Melifonwu. Grade: C-

NFC East

Dallas Cowboys

Analysis: The Cowboys simply had to address their pass rush and their depleted secondary. And they did so. First-round DE Taco Charlton should be able to help the Dallas defense get to opposing QBs. The Cowboys added cornerbacks in second-rounder Chidobe Awuzie and third-rounder Jourdan Lewis, and got a safety in sixth-rounder Xavier Woods. They’d better be ready to play. The Cowboys might need all of them at some point this season. Lewis has been charged with misdemeanor domestic violence and faces a trial scheduled for July. Grade: B-

New York Giants

Analysis: The Giants, with the 23rd overall choice, went with Evan Engram instead of David Njoku as the second TE taken in the draft. That’s a bit questionable. But Engram will present matchup problems for defenses with his WR-like mobility. The Giants used a third-rounder to possibly put Eli Manning’s eventual successor at QB in place, in Davis Webb. The Cal product is an interesting prospect who had some draft analysts convinced he might come off the board even earlier. Grade: B

Philadelphia Eagles

Analysis: Some draft analysts question the athleticism of first-round DE Derek Barnett. But he was an extremely productive pass rusher in college and the Eagles must hope that translates to the NFL ranks. Second-round CB Sidney Jones suffered a torn Achilles’ tendon at his pro day and it’s not clear when he’ll be able to play. Perhaps in part because of that, Philadelphia went with another cornerback in the third round, Rasul Douglas. Getting DT Elijah Qualls in the sixth round was an excellent value. Grade: B-

Washington Redskins

Analysis: The Redskins are without a GM after firing Scot McCloughan but nevertheless had a productive draft. Those who said that Jonathan Allen was among the two or three best players in this draft might have been overstating it a bit. Still, he was a terrific value at the 17th overall pick. Second-round LB Ryan Anderson and third-round CB Fabian Moreau, recovering from a torn pectoral muscle suffered at his pro day, also could have immediate roles on a defense that desperately needed the help. Fourth-round RB Samaje Perine likewise could vie for rookie-year playing time. Grade: B+

Redskins have salvaged some stability from what could have been a catastrophic offseason

NFC North

Chicago Bears

Analysis: The first rule of NFL roster construction is that if you don’t have a franchise QB, you have to do whatever it takes to try to get one. That’s true. That’s fine. But there also has to be a prudent, consistent plan in place for how to go about it. That’s what is lacking here. First the Bears went out in free agency last month and signed Mike Glennon to a three-year, approximately $45 million deal. That’s not cheap. And Glennon, at age 27 and with 18 NFL starts on his resume, remains a relatively young QB. Now the Bears trade up to second in the NFL draft to take Mitchell Trubisky. He might be the answer at some point. After only 13 college starts, it’s difficult to know that with much certainty. The Bears passed up defensive standouts Solomon Thomas, Jamal Adams and Marshon Lattimore. It all might work out for the Bears. If so, it won’t be because of their sensible planning. Grade: D+

Chicago Bulls fans welcome Bears pick Mitchell Trubisky to town with boos

Detroit Lions

Analysis: There was nothing wrong with Detroit taking LB Jarrad Davis 21st overall … unless Reuben Foster becomes an NFL standout. The Lions let Foster’s slide through the opening round continue. Detroit’s use of a sixth-round choice on QB Brad Kaaya is interesting. Matthew Stafford is entering the final season of his contract. He’s probably not going anywhere. But the Lions added an intriguing QB prospect who dropped much further than many draft analysts had expected. Grade: B-

Green Bay Packers

Analysis: GM Ted Thompson traded out of the opening round but got CB Kevin King with the first pick of the second. King and safety Josh Jones, taken later in the second round, should help in the secondary. Jones also could get a look at CB, which had been a position of dire need for Green Bay. The Packers demonstrated that promising RBs could be gotten in the middle rounds of this draft by using a fourth-round choice on Jamaal Williams. Grade: B

Minnesota Vikings

Analysis: The Vikings had no first-round pick after last year’s Sam Bradford trade but went for a high-volume draft, with an 11-player class. Getting RB Dalvin Cook with the ninth choice of the second round was well worth it. This draft was deep in runners but he’d been projected as a first-rounder by some observers. Cook will team with Latavius Murray at tailback for the Adrian Peterson-less Vikings. The center taken in the third round, Pat Elflein, could be a very solid although far-from-glamorous pick. Grade: B-

Vikings select running back Dalvin Cook in second round

NFC South

Atlanta Falcons

Analysis: The defending NFC champs bolstered their pass rush by getting DE Takkarist McKinley late in the opening round. He could be effective as a complement to Vic Beasley. More help on defense could come from third-round LB Duke Riley and fifth-round CB Damontae Kazee. The offensive line needed help on the interior. Fourth-rounder Sean Harlow could vie for a starting job at guard. Grade: B

Carolina Panthers

Analysis: The three choices in the first two rounds all were devoted to the offense. RB Christian McCaffrey and WR Curtis Samuel bring versatility with their dual-threat abilities. But they’re nontraditional players who must be used correctly. There is room to wonder whether using the eighth overall pick on McCaffrey was justified when he does not project to be a workhorse runner. Grade: B

New Orleans Saints

Analysis: The secondary gets better with the addition of the draft’s top cornerback, Marshon Lattimore, who dropped to the Saints at No. 11 overall. The offensive line gets better with the arrival of T Ryan Ramczyk on the final selection of the opening round. Second-round safety Marcus Williams and third-round LB Alex Anzalone also should help the perpetually-in-need New Orleans defense. The Saints are stockpiling running backs, using a third-round choice on Alvin Kamara just after signing Adrian Peterson to go with Mark Ingram. It’s the Peterson signing, not the Kamara selection, that might have been unnecessary. Grade: A-

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Analysis: One of the best picks in the draft could end up being the Buccaneers’ selection of TE O.J. Howard at 19th overall. He is extremely gifted and could be a major addition to further aid the development of QB Jameis Winston as he enters his third NFL season. The rest of the Bucs’ draft class is not as flashy but there are solid players here throughout. Third-round WR Chris Godwin and fifth-round RB Jeremy McNichols, in particular, could have chances to contribute immediately. Grade: B+

NFC West

Arizona Cardinals

Analysis: The defense gets better with the additions of LB Haason Reddick in the opening round and S Budda Baker in the second round. Baker played for a ridiculously talented secondary in college at Washington and now becomes part of what should be a very good defensive backfield in Arizona. Fourth-round guard Dorian Johnson could help. It’s a bit surprising that the Cardinals did not opt for a QB at any point, with the end of Carson Palmer’s career not yet at hand but certainly in sight. Grade: B

Los Angeles Rams

Analysis: The Rams didn’t have a first-rounder but did their best to help second-year QB Jared Goff. Three of their first four picks were pass-catchers, including TE Gerald Everett and WRs Cooper Kupp and Josh Reynolds.  Grade: B-

San Francisco 49ers

Analysis: Who says you need NFL front office experience to make this stuff work? If the first draft overseen by John Lynch, the supposed novice GM of the 49ers, is any indication, more teams should be scouring the TV broadcast booths for general manager candidates. Lynch did very well. He took advantage of the Bears’ folly to trade down a spot and take the player at No. 3 overall, Solomon Thomas, who made perfect sense at No. 2. He traded back up into the first round to get LB Reuben Foster. Other teams seemed wary of a variety of issues with Foster, principally a shoulder problem. But he can play. A third-rounder might have been a bit steep for QB C.J. Beathard. The Niners can afford to be a bit more patient in the quest for a franchise QB, with a run at Kirk Cousins possible next offseason. They added a deep and talented draft class, and new coach Kyle Shanahan maintained the family tradition of getting a promising mid-round RB with fourth-rounder Joe Williams. Grade: A

Seattle Seahawks

Analysis: The Seahawks traded out of the first round but got a projected first-rounder, DT Malik McDowell, three picks into Round 2. Ethan Pocic, taken in the second round, should bolster an offensive line that was in need of help. He is listed as a center but could end up at guard or even tackle. The Seahawks took an offensive tackle, Justin Senior, in the sixth round. But it’s questionable whether they did enough to improve their faulty pass protection for QB Russell Wilson.  Grade: B-