Well, that was one of the craziest drafts in NFL history!
Nine trades were made on day one. And surprisingly, Kenny Pickett was the only quarterback taken within the first 73 picks.
With draft weekend over, our attention now turns to minicamp and OTAs. Here is where all 32 NFL teams stack up in our post-draft edition of the power rankings.
32. Jacksonville Jaguars (29)
The Jaguars made the interesting choice to select Travon Walker first overall instead of a more polished prospect like Aidan Hutchinson or ‘Sauce’ Gardner.
Trading up to get Devin Lloyd 27th overall was brilliant, but the rest of the Jaguars’ draft left quite a bit to be desired. The other bottom feeders had superb drafts, hence why Jacksonville re-claims the No. 32 spot here.
31. Carolina Panthers (27)
The Panthers did very well at the draft given their limited number of picks. Taking Ikem Ekwonu sixth overall was a no-brainer. And trading up for QB Matt Corral at No. 94 overall gives this team SOME hope at the quarterback position going forward.
In an ideal world, the Panthers bring in a veteran starter to compete with Corral for the starting job, because we know Sam Darnold isn’t it.
30. Houston Texans (32)
GM Nick Caserio came away with five guys who could realistically start on day one. Derek Stingley Jr., Kenyon Green and Jalen Pitre should all excel in Lovie Smith’s defense. If he stays healthy, John Metchie can slot in as a quality number two wideout beside Brandin Cooks.
A lot of holes on this roster remain, and they still aren’t ready to contend. But the long-term outlook is very promising in Houston.
29. Atlanta Falcons (31)
Well, this sure was a draft to LOVE if you’re a Falcons fan. Drake London and Kyle Pitts are going to be a scary-good pass-catching duo for years to come. Day two picks Arnold Ebiketie and Troy Andersen fill the holes in Atlanta’s previously-awful front seven.
No clue how Desmond Ritter fell to Atlanta in round three, but hey, there’s the potential QB of the future that Falcons fans have wanted for a while! Take a bow, Terry Fontenot. This was magnificent work.
28. New York Giants (26)
It feels weird praising the Giants in a draft-related article, but such is life when you have Joe Schoen running the show instead of Dave Gettleman.
Kayvon Thibodeaux and Azeez Ojulari give the G-Men two prolific edge rushers to build around long-term. Meanwhile, New York’s other first-round selection, Evan Neal, will immediately upgrade one of the league’s worst offensive lines.
27. Detroit Lions (28)
The Lions didn’t have the top pick in the draft, but they still came away with the top player on many people’s boards in Aidan Hutchinson. The Michigan product and Plymouth native now has the chance to reverse the fortunes of his home town team.
Even if the price was high, gotta love the aggressive move to get Jameson Williams at No. 12 overall. With Williams, TJ Hockenson AND Amon-Ra St. Brown in the fold, Jared Goff now has a chance to prove himself as the starter beyond 2022.
26. New York Jets (30)
Bravo to the Jets, who came away with four Week 1 starters within the first 36 selections. Ahmad ‘Sauce’ Gardner was the crown jewel of this haul, but Garrett Wilson, Jermaine Johnson II and Breece Hall will all produce immediately as well.
Gardner single-handedly changes the whole look of that Jets secondary. Johnson and Quinnen Williams will form a scary pass rushing duo. As for Wilson and Hall, they’ll give Zach Wilson two explosive weapons to help his development.
25. Seattle Seahawks (25)
Why didn’t the Seahawks draft like this when they had Russell Wilson?! Charles Cross is the stalwart that Wilson could have used on the o-line all those years…
Edge rusher Boye Mafe and corners Coby Bryant – LOVE THE NAME! – and Tariq Woolen will bring much-needed juice to a lousy defense. Taking Kenneth Walker in round two was a surprise given the strong depth Seattle has at RB… Buy hey, you can never have too many playmakers.
24. Chicago Bears (24)
On one hand, the Bears got great value by nabbing Kyler Gordon and Jaquan Brisker in round two. Their already solid secondary will be even better with those two. And Velus Jones is a crafty, do-it-all weapon who will contribute on offense and special teams.
But uh, why did the Bears avoid offensive linemen until round five?
23. Washington Commanders (23)
Smart on Washington to prioritize wide receiver in round one. Jahan Dotson will be the ideal complement to Terry McLaurin. And if the latter doesn’t stay in DC long-term, the Commanders at least have his replacement already lined up.
Great value by snagging Sam Howell in the No. 144 spot. He’ll redshirt his first year and likely 2023 as well, but it was absolutely worth taking a flier on him.
22. Pittsburgh Steelers (21)
Kevin Colbert’s final draft as the Steelers’ GM was a good one. He stayed patient throughout and hit home runs in the first three rounds.
Getting Kenny Pickett at No. 20 overall was a dream scenario. He can sit behind Mitch Trubisky for a year or two before taking the reins. OR Pickett can win the starting job right away! Either will do.
Georgia wideout George Pickens was a great value pick. And DeMarvin Leal, who was taken in round 3, only adds more strength to an already dangerous front seven.
21. Indianapolis Colts (20)
No first-round pick for the Colts, but GM Chris Ballard found good value in Cincinnati wideout Alec Pierce and Central Michigan offensive tackle Bernhard Raimann, who went 53rd and 77th, respectively.
More support incoming for newcomer Matt Ryan. Can’t complain about that if you’re an Indy fan.
20. Minnesota Vikings (22)
How many times have we brought up the Vikings’ need to fix the secondary? And they did just that with the Lewis Cine and Andrew Booth Jr picks… And this is after they signed Za’Darius Smith in free agency.
At least on paper, this Vikings defense looks a whole lot better.
19. New England Patriots (12)
We hate questioning Bill Belichick…but why reach for Cole Strange in round one and for Tyquan Thornton in round two when you could have easily traded down for them?
The Patriots still haven’t done anything to fix up an ageing front seven that needs more speed and athleticism. Marcus Jones was a nice find in round three, but you can’t just expect him to step in and replace Pro Bowler JC Jackson.
The disappointing offseason continues for the Patriots…
18. Denver Broncos (16)
Nik Bonitto was the highlight of the Broncos’ draft class. The Oklahoma edge rusher fills a major void on the defensive line and should start right away.
Not sure if anyone from this haul outside of Bonitto will start much in 2022, but that’s not surprising after they traded away all those draft picks for Russell Wilson.
17. New Orleans Saints (18)
We don’t get the criticism of the Saints’ going in win-now mode this offseason. Chris Olave, will be the number two wideout they’ve been lacking behind Michael Thomas all these years. Trevor Penning is a younger, cheaper and healthier replacement for the departed Terron Armstead.
After the draft, the Saints signed Tyrann Mathieu. This team won nine games last year with four different QBs and a bunch of COVID-19 cases. They certainly have the pieces in place to go on a deep run in 2022!
16. Dallas Cowboys (14)
Taking Tyler Smith at No. 24 was a reach, but the Cowboys had to address the offensive line early. Loved the pickup of South Alabama wideout Jalen Tolbert in the 88th slot. He could be an immediate impact player in that Dallas offense.
15. Arizona Cardinals (17)
The Cards traded their first rounder to the Ravens for Marquise Brown, who’s coming off his first 1,000-yard season. He’ll now go from a run-first offense in Baltimore to a more potent aerial attack in Arizona.
The selection of Trey McBride – the top tight end in this class – at No. 55 overall was pure brilliance. The Redbirds have refueled their already-potent offense and should be even better in 2022…we think?
14. Las Vegas Raiders (15)
The Raiders didn’t pick until 90th overall because of the Davante Adams trade.
But they found a likely day one starter in Memphis guard Dylan Parham with their top pick. And Georgie RB Zamir White should be a nice complement to Josh Jacobs.
13. Miami Dolphins (13)
Miami only had four draft picks this year after trading up for Jaylen Waddle in 2021, and adding Tyreek Hill in a blockbuster trade this offseason.
Not sure if any of their picks will be starters in 2022, but who cares? The Dolphins threw all their chips in the middle of the table and want to win now with Tua Tagovailoa. Can’t fault them for that.
12. Tennessee Titans (10)
The Titans pulled off a stunner by dealing star wideout AJ Brown to the Philadelphia Eagles for the No. 18 pick, which they used on Arkansas receiver Treylon Burks. Honestly, we would have just paid Brown what he’s worth…but maybe Burks will fill that void?
Roger McCreary, the No. 35 pick, should immediately boost that already deep secondary that will welcome back Caleb Farley next year. And how did Malik Willis fall all the way to them in the No. 86 spot?
Ryan Tannehill is the starter for now, but don’t blame us for dreaming of a Willis-Derrick Henry combo in that backfield someday.
11. Philadelphia Eagles (19)
Welp, the Eagles just went from playoff bubble team to Super Bowl sleeper.
Philly traded up for one-man wrecking machine Jordan Davis. Then they traded the number 18 pick to Tennessee in exchange for the aforementioned AJ Brown. Jalen Hurts now gets to throw to both Brown and DeVonta Smith? How is that fair?
Widely-projected first-rounder Nakobe Dean fell to the Eagles in the No. 83 spot, which is beyond comprehension. A wonderful weekend for Howie Roseman, who now has Philly in the driver’s seat to take over the NFC East.
10. Los Angeles Chargers (9)
Zion Johnson was the ideal pick for the Chargers at No. 17 overall. The o-line rapidly improved with the arrivals of Rashawn Slater and Cory Linsley in 2021, and now they have a powerful guard in Johnson to shore up the interior offensive line.
Thanks to a tremendous offseason by GM Tom Telesco, all of the pieces are now in place for the Bolts to take that next step in 2022.
9. Cleveland Browns (11)
The Deshaun Watson trade left the Browns without any picks in the top 67. Mississippi state corner Martin Emerson was a good find in the 68th spot, but our favorite Browns’ pick here was Purdue wideout David Bell at No. 99 overall.
With Bell and Amari Cooper now in the fold, the Browns have addressed their pressing need for receivers.
8. San Francisco 49ers (7)
The 49ers found an explosive pass-rusher in USC product Drake Jackson, who fell to them at No. 61. Jackson should flourish in a front seven that already boasts Nick Bosa, Fred Warner and Arik Armstead.
However, it was surprising to see them take LSU running back Tyrion Davis-Price in round three, given the excellent depth they already have at the position.
7. Baltimore Ravens (8)
No clue how Kyle Hamilton fell to Baltimore in the 14th spot. That was the best value pick of this draft by far. Also, getting Tyler Linderbaum to shore up your o-line after dealing away Marquise Brown worked out to be a fine trade-off, if you ask us.
David Ojabo may not play in 2022 as he recovers from a torn Achilles, but he has all the makings to be a very impactful starter in Baltimore when he takes the field. Not sure if any team won this year’s draft more than the Ravens.
Typical Eric DeCosta!
6. Los Angeles Rams (6)
As you saw in February, draft picks aren’t really the Los Angeles Rams’ thing. And having won Super Bowl 56, why should they care about working long hours over the draft weekend?
Wisconsin guard Logan Bruss was an enticing pick in the 104th spot. The way the Rams develop their offensive linemen, we’re sure Bruss will eventually grow into a reliable starter there.
5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (4)
Jason Licht did a good job in addressing the Bucs’ main needs. Logan Hall adds more beef to a powerful front seven, Luke Goedeke fills the remaining void at guard and Rachaad White can form a nice 1-2 duo with Leonard Fournette in the backfield.
Washington tight end Cade Otton, the 106th pick, is yet another weapon for Tom Brady to use in what is likely his last NFL season. He was well worth taking a chance on.
4. Green Bay Packers (5)
It was easy to question the Packers’ decision to double down on defense in round one…but only for one day. Quay Walker and Devonte Wyatt bring more muscle to one of the league’s top defensive units.
On day two, Green Bay moved up and took North Dakota State wideout Christian Watson at No. 34 overall – finally giving Aaron Rodgers some much-needed help after losing Davante Adams and Marquez Valdes-Scantling.
3. Cincinnati Bengals (3)
With all of the top offensive line prospects off the board, the Bengals wisely turned their focus to their next main need: The secondary. Michigan star Daxton Hill should do wonders in that defense, giving the reigning AFC champs another playmaking defensive back to help cut down on the big plays.
Nebraska corner Cam Taylor-Britt, who was taken in round two, may not start right away. But he at least provides some valuable depth at the position.
2. Kansas City Chiefs (2)
If the Ravens weren’t the main winners of the 2022 draft, then it was the Chiefs. GM Brett Veach worked his magic and found a new lockdown corner in Trent McDuffie at No. 21 overall.
Focusing again on defense, he scored incredible value by getting George Karlaftis at No. 30 overall. There’s the much-needed defensive end KC needed to complement Frank Clark and Chris Jones.
Oh, and the “KC NEEDS A RECEIVER CROWD” finally got to relax when Veach took Skyy Moore in round two. Forgive our pun here when we say the “Skyy is the limit” for Skyy Moore in this Patrick Mahomes-led offense.
1. Buffalo Bills (1)
We kept saying how the Bills needed another lockdown corner to help Tre’Davious White. Well, Florida product Kaiir Elam will do just fine, thanks!
We don’t always like taking running backs in early rounds, but nabbing James Cook at No. 63 overall was necessary. Cook should finally give Buffalo a true workhorse to take some of the load off of Josh Allen.
Another incredible offseason of work by Brandon Beane has the Bills as the team to beat heading into 2022.
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