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9 Jul 2020

Home of the NFL Offseason

AFC and NFC North Post-Draft Recap (w/ FA consideration)

BALTIMORE

Grade: A

  1. Patrick Queen (ILB, 1st)
  2. J.K. Dobbins (RB, 2nd)
  3. Justin Madubuilke (DT 3rd)
  4. Devin Duvernay (WR, 3rd)
  5. Malik Harrison (ILB, 3rd)
  6. Tyre Phillips (OT, 3rd)
  7. Ben Bredeson (OG, 4th)
  8. Broderick Washington Jr. (DT, 5th)
  9. James Proche (WR, 6th)
  10. Geno Stone (S, 7th)

Adding veteran DL such as Calais Campbell and Derek Wolfe via free agency has made one of the league’s most complete rosters even better with tremendous veteran leadership. Patrick Queen was such a Raven pick, and that’s a good thing. Dobbins gives you quality snaps and fills in nicely for an aging Mark Ingram. Devin Duvernay was a sneaky good pick, who, when Lamar Jackson buys 6 seconds to throw, you can’t possibly cover a guy with that speed for that long. Also, teams who consistently put up double-digit win seasons get tremendous performance from their 3rd round picks and later. In this case, Baltimore brought in four, 3rd round picks that will all develop behind the great depth and leadership this team brings. Baltimore could possibly see 4 day-1 starters after this draft.

CINCINNATI

Grade: A

  1. Joe Burrow (QB, 1st)
  2. Tee Higgins (WR, 2nd)
  3. Logan Wilson (ILB, 3rd)
  4. Akeem Davis-Gaither (OLB, 4th)
  5. Khalid Kareem (EDGE, 5th)
  6. Hakeem Adenji (OT, 6th)
  7. Markus Bailey (ILB, 7th)

The Bengals added depth to their secondary in free agency and added a solid presence in the middle with DJ Reader, who should alleviate a lot of the pressure off rookies Logan Wilson and Davis-Gaither. I gave them a solid grade because they didn’t seem to outsmart themselves. This seemed like a simple, composed draft strategy; they let the draft come to them, and ended up with 4 picks that have a great shot at being day-1 starters.

CLEVELAND

Grade: B+

  1. Jedrick Wills (OT, 1st)
  2. Grant Delpit (S, 2nd)
  3. Jordan Elliott (DT, 3rd)
  4. Jacob Phillips (ILB, 4th)
  5. Harrison Bryant (TE, 4th)
  6. Nick Harris (C, 5th)
  7. Donovan Peoples-Jones (WR, 6th)

Cleveland came right out of the gate in free agency by not allowing Jack Conklin to receive any more offers. They signed him immediately and added Jedrick Wills at 10 to, ideally, sure up something that received as much scrutiny as former HC Freddie Kitchens. They also added underrated DT Andrew Billings to clog the middle, TE Austin Hooper and Safety Karl Joseph. I thought Cleveland did a nice job here; taking SEC players with their first 4 picks, going BPA with Delpit and Jacob Phillips, an undersized yet highly explosive, smart LB. I’m not sure if Elliott makes his way into the starting lineup on the DL due to depth, but he was a nice pick at that spot and could step right in if there is a player that’s lost to next year’s FA.

PITTSBURGH

Grade: C

  1. Chase Claypool (WR, 2nd)
  2. Alex Highsmith (OLB, 3rd)
  3. Anthony McFarland Jr. (RB, 4th)
  4. Kevin Dotson (OG, 4th)
  5. Antoine Brooks Jr. (S, 6th)
  6. Carlos Davis (DT, 7th)

Pittsburgh gave up its first round pick this year to Miami in the Minkah Fitzpatrick deal, so, basically he was their first round pick, which turned out to be a great move. They were quiet in free agency, but retaining Bud Dupree was big and that’s what they did. Highsmith raises some eyebrows if Dupree puts together another quality year and they lose him next Spring. However, even though his route running needs work, Chase Claypool is a massive body that works nicely out of the slot, and is a huge target in the RedZone.

NFC

CHICAGO

Grade: D

  1. Cole Kmet (TE, 2nd)
  2. Jaylon Johnson (CB, 2nd)
  3. Trevis Gipson (OLB, 5th)
  4. Kindle Vildor (CB, 5th)
  5. Darnell Mooney (WR, 5th)
  6. Arlington Hambright (OT, 7th)
  7. Lachavious Simmons (OG, 7th)

Pretty well-known by now that Chicago had about 40 Tight End’s on their team. In addition to giving Jimmy Graham way too much money, the Bears used their 1st pick of the draft on another TE, albeit he’s the best TE in the draft. Chicago struggled in Free Agency and dishing out so much money to Robert Quinn and Jimmy Graham were questionable decisions at best. In my opinion, even after the draft, Nick Foles is still the one bringing in the buzz.

DETROIT

Grade: C+

  1. Jeff Okudah (CB, 1st)
  2. D’Andre Swift (RB, 2nd)
  3. Julian Okwara (OLB, 3rd)
  4. Jonah Jackson (OG, 3rd)
  5. Logan Stenberg (OG, 4th)
  6. Quintez Cephus (WR, 5th)
  7. Jason Huntley (RB, 5th)
  8. John Penisini (DT, 6th)
  9. Jashon Cornell (DE, 7th)

Detroit was definitely in an interesting spot prior to the draft, and, of course nothing played out with the QB situation. The Okudah pick was a no-brainer, but after that, I felt the draft was disappointing. Regarding D’Andre Swift, I didn’t think RB was necessarily a need in the 2nd round, BPA, and just lacked some overall excitement. I also felt Julian Okwara was one of the more overrated prospects as well. They did manage to get him in the 3rd, but watching the film there just seems to be a lack of explosiveness and an array of pass rush moves. Adding depth on the OL was certainly a good move, and, with the added speculation on Matthew Stafford’s future, it’s good to give him everything you can to keep him healthy.

GREEN BAY

Grade: F

  1. Jordan Love (QB, 1st)
  2. AJ Dillon (RB 2nd)
  3. Josiah Deguara (TE, 3rd)
  4. Kamal Martin (ILB, 5th)
  5. Jon Runyan (OT, 6th)
  6. Jake Hanson (C, 6th)
  7. Simon Stepaniak (OT, 6th)
  8. Vernon Scott (S, 7th)
  9. Jonathan Garvin (DE, 7th)

Not entirely sure what to say here…The Jordan Love move was the biggest surprise of the draft, and I think Green Bay feels with his talent, and Aaron Rodgers winning 11+ games every year, the only way to get into a position to draft a potential franchise QB is to go 3-13. However, Rodgers is doing just that; winning 11+ games most years, and had been vocal about some new weapons. Also, although he managed to have a very productive career, I didn’t see AJ Dillon going that early, and much like D’Andre Swift, he’s going to split time. GB’s FA spending last year was unheard of, but this year averaged it out with a very modest class, adding names like Devin Funchess, Chirstian Kirksey, and retaining veteran TE, Marcedes Lewis.

MINNESOTA

Grade: A+

To prove my point, I’m not going to list all of Minnesota’s 15 picks. 15! Most since 1994 and I loved it. Best draft, and the beauty of it is Minnesota is such a homegrown team. In order for that to happen, and be as good as they’ve been, you’ve got to have everyone in the organization on the same page. This isn’t just draft well, and give good coaches good talent. The coaches, scouts, analytic department, GM, all your personnel guys and ownership all need to be on the same page and working together. That bring us to the 15 picks and this whole, too big to fail mentality when you’ve got everyone working together, you just gather as much talent within the structure of your system that you possibly can since it’s worked so well up to this point.

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