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First Round Grades and Analysis

1. Arizona Cardinals – Kyler Murray, QB, Oklahoma

So, all the rumors were true – Kyler Murray is officially the number one overall pick. I personally feel Kyler is an electric player with game-changing abilities and I understand that he will fit Kliff Kingsbury’s system better but when you have Josh Rosen, a great player who just had no supporting cast, it makes more sense to me to fill one of the many holes on this roster and go defensive line in which this class has exceptional talent.

My Big Board Rank: 4 Pick: 1 Grade: C+

2. San Francisco 49ers – Nick Bosa, EDGE, Ohio State

Bosa is the best player in this draft by a considerable margin and I absolutely love this pick for the 49ers. This defensive line is going to be insane next year and their biggest weakness in getting after the quarterback has turned into a big strength through free agency and the draft.

My Big Board Rank: 1 Pick: 2 Grade: A

3. New York Jets – Quinnen Williams, DT, Alabama

Unfortunately, the Jets couldn’t find a willing trade partner and had to settle for the dominating defensive lineman from Alabama. I think Williams will have great success in the NFL and is a good fit for the Jets defensive scheme. However, I still think a trade to regain some draft capital lost last year would have been better in the long run.

My Big Board Rank: 2 Pick: 3 Grade: B+

4. Oakland Raiders – Clelin Ferrell, EDGE, Clemson

I knew the Raiders were doing a surprise pick, but this is not what I expected. First though, I’ll give credit where it is due: Mayock recognized that their pass rush is bad. Really, really bad. He knew they needed one of the elite pass rushers in this draft and this was his choice. I think Ferrell flashes top-5 talent but desperately lacks consistency. Hopefully, Gruden can get the most out of this kid but for me, this was way too early for Ferrell.

My Big Board Rank: 21 Pick: 4 Grade: C-

5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Devin White, LB, LSU

I was a bit surprised to not see Josh Allen go here. I feel like Allen fits the type of scheme Tampa Bay will be going for this season but nevertheless White is an every-down player who will add tremendously to this defense and locker room. I’m happy they didn’t mess this pick up at all, but this pick doesn’t blow me away either.

My Big Board Rank: 6 Pick: 5 Grade: B

6. New York Giants – Daniel Jones, QB, Duke

I never believed the reports that said he was going at six but here he is. It makes sense that this is their guy – a friend of the Manning’s, smart guy, similar traits to Eli and he even looks like Eli. But this doesn’t take away from the fact that they just drafted a third-round talent at six overall. The only reason this isn’t an ‘F’ is that I have some hope for Jones’ future.

My Big Board Rank: 73 Pick: 6 Grade: D-

7. Jacksonville Jaguars – Josh Allen, EDGE/OLB, Kentucky

On tape, this kid amazes me, but my biggest concern is if his talents will translate to the NFL. Regardless, it’s impressive how good he is at rushing the passer AND how natural he looks dropping into the coverage. This was good value and I don’t think the Jaguars were expecting him to be available at 7.

My Big Board Rank: 5 Pick: 7 Grade: A-

8. Detroit Lions – T.J. Hockenson, TE, Iowa

Detroit should’ve traded out of here or gone DL like Oliver because their biggest need is rushing the passer and while I like Hockenson, he doesn’t get after quarterbacks. I see people say he is the next Gronk, but I think we all need to manage our expectations. As good as Hockenson is at blocking, he is nothing compared to Gronkowski and Gronk had incredible hands. Hockenson is still a good player but I think they needed to get more value out of this pick (either through a trade or defensive linemen).

My Big Board Rank: 15 Pick: 8 Grade: C

9. Buffalo Bills – Ed Oliver, DT, Houston

Absolute steal of the draft. This kid is number 3 on my big board for a reason it’s a shame that he was misused at Houston. I think Oliver will be an All-Pro at the next level and this pick is truly incredible for the Bills. They knew they wanted him, and they didn’t even have to trade up to get him.

My Big Board Rank: 3 Pick: 9 Grade: A+

10. Pittsburgh Steelers – Devin Bush, LB, Michigan

I think Bush will fit great here and is worthy of a top-10 selection. He will replace Shazier who may never play again. This is one of their needs and I’m happy they traded up to get it**

My Big Board Rank: 17 Pick: 10 Grade: A-

11. Cincinnati Bengals – Jonah Williams, OL, Alabama

This was another steal of a Top-10 talent falling. It was an interesting choice that decided to stay with Dalton another year and not take Haskins, but I think I agree with it as Williams is my favorite OL in this draft and an immediate plug and play guy who can kick inside to OG if needed.

My Big Board Rank: 7 Pick: 11 Grade: B+

12. Green Bay Packers – Rashan Gary, DT/EDGE, Michigan

In my opinion, Gary is a second-round prospect. His potential is there because of his insane athleticism but he just isn’t technically sound with his pass rush moves, and while other things may be to blame, his production is simply not there. The shoulder concerns further scare me away. This pick is a boom or bust and I don’t think 12th overall is the place to take such a risky prospect.

My Big Board Rank: 36 Pick: 12 Grade: D+

13. Miami Dolphins – Christian Wilkins, DT, Clemson

I absolutely love Wilkins, and in my opinion, could possibly be worthy of a top-15 pick. But Miami should’ve traded out to gather more picks which would kickstart this rebuild or found a player that provided them with a bit more value. I’m not upset with this pick; I just think Miami needed to do something more with this pick. Regardless, Wilkins is a nice piece for Flores and the Dolphins to build upon.

My Big Board Rank: 26 Pick: 13 Grade: B

14. Atlanta Falcons – Chris Lindstrom, G, Boston College

Lindstrom is an extremely underrated prospect and will be ready to protect Matt Ryan from the interior for a long time. Atlanta desperately needed protection help from the interior which makes this a great pick from the Falcons.

My Big Board Rank: 28 Pick: 14 Grade: B+

15. Washington Redskins – Dwayne Haskins, QB, Ohio State

I was expecting a slight slide for Haskins but not this kind of fall. The Redskins were deciding between filling important defensive holes in an aging roster or drafting a franchise quarterback who fell into their laps. They ultimately went with the latter and I couldn’t agree more with it. Getting a stud QB with ‘Rivers-like’ potential on a cheap, rookie contract buys them a bit of time to fill out this team that in all honesty is not that far off a playoff run.

My Big Board Rank: 10 Pick: 15 Grade: A

16. Carolina Panthers – Brian Burns, EDGE, Florida State

This pick made a lot of sense. Panthers need help rushing the passer and lack speed throughout their front-seven. Burns wins with his devastating speed. Also, the value here is good enough, not a reach but not a steal.

My Big Board Rank: 14 Pick: 16 Grade: B+

17. New York Giants – Dexter Lawrence, DT, Clemson

While still a reach, this was the only somewhat logical pick by the Giants today. Gettlemen wanted his ‘franchise’ QB and a big guy on the OL or DL and he got that with Lawrence, a massive nose tackle for the National Championship winning school. Lawrence will help the Giants with their disastrous defense and help provide at least some stability in their run defense. Not a bad pick but many other options on the board with specifically some great OL talent still there.

My Big Board Rank: 37 Pick: 17 Grade: C

18. Minnesota Vikings – Garrett Bradbury, C, NC State

Not a flashy pick, but a very solid pick that will protect their investment in Kirk Cousins for years to come. Bradbury, a very athletic center, is a great mover and will help the Vikings run game as well with his ability to move people and open up lanes. A good pick from the Vikings to finally address their poor OL.

My Big Board Rank: 25 Pick: 18 Grade: B+

19. Tennessee Titans – Jeffery Simmons, DT, Mississippi State

Outstanding pick. I don’t think the Titans have enough firepower to make a run for the postseason this year, but this pick sets them up very nicely for the five years to have one of the most dominant defensive linemen in this class. Simmons is a top-five talent who has fallen because of injury and character concerns. But I’m willing to put those aside and focus on his talent and potential. Simmons will absolutely demolish quarterbacks and in a division with Luck, Watson and now Foles, Tennessee will now have the defensive firepower to pressure the quarterback and force more turnovers.

My Big Board Rank: 8 Pick: 19 Grade: A

20. Denver Broncos – Noah Fant, TE, Iowa

I actually don’t mind Noah Fant, it’s just that I wanted to see Drew Lock here. I loved the trade down, but I think Elway should know Joe Flacco isn’t a permanent option and the better option was to go with his gut and take Lock, the QB he has liked for a while. Fant will provide a weapon for Flacco to use through the middle of the field and is a beast in the red-zone which will help the offense score some points to help out Denver’s already good defense.

My Big Board Rank: 35 Pick: 20 Grade: B

21. Green Bay Packers – Darnell Savage, S, Maryland

Trust me when I say I am very high on Savage. I really like this prospect. His coverage skills are incredible and something that will transfer to the next level very well. I just think Green Bay didn’t need to trade up to get him. Maybe some other team would go for him in the ’20s but chances are he makes it to 30. But again, Savage is a great pick and I am excited to see him in the NFL.

My Big Board Rank: 32 Pick: 21 Grade: B

22. Philadelphia Eagles – Andre Dillard, OT, Washington State

Dillard is my OT2 and I really like his plug and play potential at either side. This was a great pick for the Eagles who don’t have an emergency switch in Nick Foles anymore and must keep Carson Wentz healthy. Great value and absolutely worth the trade up in my opinion.

My Big Board Rank: 12 Pick: 22 Grade: A

23. Houston Texans – Tytus Howard, OT, Alabama State

I think there’s a lot to like about Howard, but I was surprised he went this high. This is where I would’ve gone Taylor but I’m thankful the Texans went OL at least as it’s by far their biggest need. The Texans clearly like their small school OL and this one certainly has a lot of potential. I feel like Taylor or even Little is more of a plug and play guy which is what this Texans team needs as their window for a deep for a Super Bowl is closing.

My Big Board Rank: 62 Pick: 23 Grade: C

24. Oakland Raiders – Josh Jacobs, RB, Alabama

Classic Mayock pick here. A very talented 3-down back who can run, catch and block very well. That’s the kind of combo that Gruden likes as well. I personally don’t like running backs in the first round less they are game-changing (e.g. Saquon, Zeke) and for that reason, I don’t think the value is here. But that has never seemed to stop Mayock from getting his guy.

My Big Board Rank: 64 Pick: 24 Grade: B-

25. Baltimore Ravens – Marquise Brown, WR, Oklahoma

I think when we look back at the WR in this class, we are going to kick ourselves in how much we over-thought it. The future of the NFL is in spread offense, RPO’s, etc. Speedsters like Hollywood Brown are rare to come by and I think he will have wild success in Baltimore catching passes Lamar Jackson as he develops as a passer. I also love the value from the trade back.

My Big Board Rank: 20 Pick: 25 Grade: A-

26. Washington Redskins – Montez Sweat, EDGE, Mississippi State

This is still too high for him in my opinion. Not because of the injury but I just don’t see him doing well at the next level. He is a second-round talent with elite athleticism, crazy length but his technique isn’t great. This is at least better at 26 than Top-15 like most people were predicting and I think the Redskins are one of the teams that afford to take a risk on Sweat and see if he works out.

My Big Board Rank: 33 Pick: 26 Grade: C+

27. Oakland Raiders – Johnathan Abram, S, Mississippi State

Another Raider pick. They had holes all over their defense and decided Abram is better than all the CB’s. This kid has the Raider mentality and certainly isn’t afraid to tackle. However, sometimes Abram is inconsistent on tape and his over-aggressiveness shows. I think Gruden likes these types of prospects drawing another reach for their guy. This isn’t a bad pick, but the value isn’t great. I would have gone CB.

My Big Board Rank: 81 Pick: 27 Grade: C

28. Los Angeles Chargers – Jerry Tillery, DT, Notre Dame

Incredible selection. Amazing value. Tillery is incredibly underrated and I think will be one of the best prospects from this draft. I didn’t think he would actually fall to the late-first after teams got a good look at him but here he is. What a great pick to add to the already young and great defense the Chargers have.

My Big Board Rank: 9 Pick: 28 Grade: A+

29. Seattle Seahawks – L.J. Collier, DT/EDGE, TCU

If you look to my mock on the mock draft contest I actually called this pick, and here’s why I thought it could happen: when the Hawks had one pick, they had no choice but to trade out to acquire more draft capital, but with two it meant they could select a player if they wanted and it had been reported that Seattle was high on Collier along with a few other teams. Seattle seems like the type of team to reach for a guy like this and he has an oddly similar playstyle to Frank Clark. Collier has a lot of potential to thrive on this Seattle and it wouldn’t surprise me for him to be a breakout this season. I think he is a good prospect but the value is obviously not the best.

My Big Board Rank: 50 Pick: 29 Grade: B

30. New York Giants – DeAndre Baker, CB, Georgia

I have no words. The Giants trade up back into the first. They must be looking at one of the top OL or CB’s that haven’t come off the board. It’s Gettlemen’s chance to redeem himself! But no, they pick Baker. Does he like his “South Florida Swagger”? I honestly don’t know what to say. They could’ve picked either Murphy or Greedy who are the consensus top two corners. They could’ve had Ford or Taylor, both steals at 30 in my opinion. But they take the corner that supposedly had interview issues, and no one could believe was even invited to the Draft. I hope he proves me wrong but for now, this was a shocking pick and cements Gettlemen as one of the worst GM’s in the league.

My Big Board Rank: 54 Pick: 30 Grade: F

31. Atlanta Falcons – Kaleb McGary, OL, Washington

I am higher than most about McGary. The Falcons don’t have a solution at right-tackle and McGary’s versatility enables the Falcons to move other guys to their preferred position. This move paired with Lindstrom is very smart and I like the way the Falcons were aggressive in getting offensive line help.

My Big Board Rank: 43 Pick: 31 Grade: B

32. New England Patriots – N’Keal Harry, WR, Arizona State

I think this was a steal and I’m pretty low on Harry. This played out great for the Pats and a stud WR fell straight into their laps. I have a feeling Belichick and New England will unlock Harry’s full potential and he will have a successful career in New England. The value was great, and Harry gives Brady a big weapon to use for a long time.

My Big Board Rank: 34 Pick: 32 Grade: A

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