These Live 2015 NFL Draft Grades will be posted minutes after each pick in the 2015 NFL Draft. Follow @walterfootball
2015 NFL Draft Grades - Round: Picks 1-16
| Picks 17-32
| Team Grades
2015 NFL Mock Draft
New York Giants: Landon Collins, S, Alabama: B Grade
The Giants dealt a fourth- and a seventh-round pick to move up to this spot. And I can see why they did it. Landon Collins was seen as a first-round prospect by many, but he slipped into the second frame. He potentially fills a huge need for the team, and if the Giants had their hearts set on filling the safety spot, they almost had to move up because there are no other players at the position worth taking in the second round.
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Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Donovan Smith, OT, Penn State: C+ Grade
It had to be one of the tackles, and I would've gone with Jake Fisher over Donovan McNabb, erm, Smith. I think it's a mistake to pass on Fisher. Smith is very athletic, but never developed at Penn State - and I say this as a Nittany Lion alumnus. Smith has motivation issues, so taking him atop Round 2 is awfully risky. He has the potential to be a Pro Bowler, but he could just as easily bust.
Oakland Raiders: Mario Edwards, DE/DT, Florida State: B- Grade
The Raiders passed on Leonard Williams in the first round, neglecting a huge need they had at defensive tackle. They had to address it on Day 2, and they managed to do so with this selection. It's a bit early for the undersized Mario Edwards - I had him at the end of Round 2 in most of my mock updates - but I can understand why the Raiders would pull the trigger on the Florida State product.
Jacksonville Jaguars: T.J. Yeldon, RB, Alabama: A Grade
Great job by Charlie Campbell calling this one. Teams were considering T.J. Yeldon at the end of the first round, so the Jaguars had to be thrilled that he made it to them at No. 36. Jacksonville needed to find a running back to upgrade predicted bust Toby Gerhart, and Yeldon was the best player available at the position.
New York Jets: Devin Smith, WR, Ohio State: B+ Grade
I had the wrong receiver going to the Jets, but I thought they'd address the position. They added Brandon Marshall this offseason to complement Eric Decker, but the aging former Bear will probably be on the team for just one year. The Jets wanted to find a receiver for the future for whomever they plan on playing at quarterback, and the speedy Smith should serve as a strong option.
Washington Redskins: Preston Smith, DE/OLB, Mississippi State: B+ Grade
The Redskins lost Brian Orakpo this offseason, so it's not a big surprise that they added an edge rusher early in the 2015 NFL Draft. They selected Trent Murphy last year, but Murphy, Ryan Kerrigan and now Preston Smith can form a stout rotation. Smith was pretty underrated throughout this entire process. He's an athletic edge rusher whom I thought had a chance of sneaking into the first round.
Chicago Bears: Eddie Goldman, NT, Florida State: B Grade
It almost had to be a nose tackle, right? The Bears are moving to the 3-4, and they didn't have any sort of run-plugger in the middle of the defensive line. The Dick Butkus-approved Eddie Goldman now becomes that player. This is the right range for Goldman, who may have had a chance to be taken at the end of the first round. He'll play only two downs for the Bears, but he'll actually give Chicago a chance to get to third-and-long.
Tennessee Titans: Dorial Green-Beckham, WR, Oklahoma: A Grade
Boom. Dorial Green-Beckham is a top-10 talent in this draft. He would be going that high if it wasn't for his character issues. The Titans have done enough digging on Green-Beckham and thought he was worth a second-round selection. He figures to be the perfect complement for Marcus Mariota; the Titans have a bunch of No. 2 or 3 receivers, but no top target. That's no longer the case. If he stays clean, Green-Beckham could become a perennial Pro Bowler. He's a risk, but the Titans obtained a fourth-round selection via the Giants just in case he busts, so that mitigates the gamble.
Carolina Panthers: Devin Funchess, TE, Michigan: MILLEN Grade
Eww... This wouldn't be a truly terrible pick if the Panthers simply selected Devin Funchess at their spot in the second round, but they surrendered third- and a sixth-rounders in the process? Uhh... why!? Funchess is a man without a true position. He's too slow to be a receiver, and there were better wideouts available. He's too small to be a tight end, and there were better tight ends available. This selection makes no sense on so many levels.
Atlanta Falcons: Jalen Collins, CB, LSU: C+ Grade
Dan Quinn wanted a tall cornerback, and Jalen Collins satisfies that. The Falcons love athleticism, and Collins satisfies that. This seems like a great pick for those two reasons, but it's not. Colliins is not a very good football player, and he has some character issues. There were better options available for the Falcons who would've filled bigger needs. Collins could work out, but he has high bust potential.
Houston Texans: Benardrick McKinney, ILB, Mississippi State: B Grade
The Texans really liked Benardrick McKinney heading into the draft, but never thought they'd have a chance to get him in the middle of the second round. That's why they surrendered fourth- and sixth-round selections to move up for him. I'm not crazy about the trade because there are numerous other inside linebackers worth taking like Denzel Perryman and Eric Kendricks, but there's no denying that Houston is getting good value with McKinney.
New Orleans Saints: Hau'oli Kikaha, DE/OLB, Washington: MAYMILLEN BOXING KIELBASA Grade
WHOA... I didn't even have Hau'oli Kikaha being drafted, and there were teams that didn't even have him on their boards because of numerous knee injuries. The Saints could've A) obtained safer players who are close in terms of talent, or B) waited several rounds to draft Kikaha. This is a major head-scratcher.
Minnesota Vikings: Eric Kendricks, ILB, UCLA: A+ Grade
This is my favorite pick of the second round so far. Eric Kendricks is a first-round prospect. I had him going to Nos. 24 and 30 in various updates of my mock draft. He should've been the first inside linebacker off the board, so he's an absolute steal in the middle of the second frame. He fills a huge need for Minnesota in the middle of its defense.
San Francisco 49ers: Jaquiski Tartt, S, Samford: D Grade
I made a disgusting-looking face when I saw this pick. I wish you could've seen it. That's pretty much the same face I've made for every single decision the 49ers have made in the past year. Their franchise is a disaster, and so is this pick. Jaquiski Tartt is a third-round prospect at best and could've easily been chosen in the fourth frame. This pick doesn't make much sense. San Francisco could've taken a safety of equal talent later.
Philadelphia Eagles: Eric Rowe, CB/S, Utah: B+ Grade
Unlike yesterday, the Eagles were able to trade up. They dealt both of their fifth-round selections, but received a sixth-rounder in return. Like yesterday, Chip Kelly obtained a Pac-12 prospect. Eric Rowe makes more sense to me than Nelson Agholor. Rowe is big and very athletic, and he can play both the cornerback and safety positions. He should help Philadelphia's putrid secondary.
San Diego Chargers: Denzel Perryman, ILB, Miami: A- Grade
Denzel Perryman could've gone earlier than this - I had him sneaking into the first round of my mock draft after hearing there was some interest - so I like this pick. Perryman could start at inside linebacker as a rookie, displacing Donald Butler, who was downright awful in 2014. It could be argued that the Chargers could've used a blocker for Philip Rivers or a pass-rusher to get after Peyton Manning, but it's hard to hate this pick.
Kansas City Chiefs: Mitch Morse, C/G, Missouri: C+ Grade
Mitch Morse is an athletic interior lineman who can play both center and guard. The Chiefs had to address the former position with Rodney Hudson gone. I think this is a bit too early for Morse, but I'm not so sure he would've been available for the Chiefs in the third round. Kansas City could've traded down, which would've salvaged this grade. However, Morse should end up being a decent player for the Chiefs.
Buffalo Bills: Ronald Darby, CB, Florida State: A Grade
Not a quarterback! It's a victory for the Bills, who sounded like they were getting duped by Bryce Petty. There was discussion that Ronald Darby could go at the end of the first or top of the second round, so Buffalo is getting a steal at No. 50. The Bills have some expiring contracts at the position in the near future, so Darby should be able to step in as the starter as early as 2016.
Cleveland Browns: Nate Orchard, DE/OLB, Utah: C+ Grade
This is a round too early for Nate Orchard, as there were were better pass-rushers available. I get the selection - Barkevious Mingo does a lot well, but doesn't do a good job of rushing the passer - so Orchard makes sense, given that he nearly had 20 sacks for the Utes last season. The Browns could've gone a different direction in terms of taking an edge rusher, but they at least moved down prior to making the pick.
Miami Dolphins: Jordan Phillips, DT, Oklahoma: C+ Grade
Wow, how many massive defensive tackles do the Dolphins need? Jordan Phillips is a massive man who happens to be very athletic for his size. The problem is that he doesn't play football very well. I thought he might go in the first round, which would've been a big reach. He makes sense in this range, but I don't like the scheme or need fit very much. The silver lining is that Miami moved down and picked up extra picks in the process.
Cincinnati Bengals: Jake Fisher, OT, Oregon: B+ Grade
Uhh... another tackle!? I guess the good news is that the Bengals know that they have a blind-side protector if Cedric Ogbuehi busts, and they're selecting the best player available, as Jake Fisher was receiving first-round buzz. The bad news is that Cincinnati apparently won't have Andre Smith or Andrew Whitworth next year, meaning they'll have to count on both second-year tackles to protect Andy Dalton.
Detroit Lions: Ameer Abdullah, RB, Nebraska: A Grade
Reggie Bush had a nice start to his Detroit career, but he flamed out, making countless mistakes toward the end of his tenure there. The Lions had to find a replacement for Bush, and they managed to do so with Ameer Abdullah, a game-breaking running back who can go the distance every time he touches the ball. Abdullah could develop into a three-down back if he learns how to block better. Even still, he'll make the Lions' offense so much more explosive.
Baltimore Ravens: Maxx Williams, TE, Minnesota: A+ Grade
If you're the Falcons or another team with a glaring need at tight end, and you passed on Maxx Williams and later saw Ozzie Newsome select him in the very same round, what are you thinking? Probably, "Ah, crap, we f***ed up." It's true. I don't know what those teams were thinking because this is an absolute steal. Williams could've easily gone at the end of the first round, but the Ravens aren't complaining. He'll provide a boost on offense while filling a huge need for them.
Pittsburgh Steelers: Senquez Golson, CB, Ole Miss: C- Grade
Call me shocked that the Steelers chose Senquez Golson over Alex Carter or P.J. Williams... or a bunch of other cornerbacks. First of all, Golson is just 5-foot-9, so he doesn't have the size Pittsburgh usually likes at the position. Second, Golson was a Round 4-5 prospect. This is too early for him, especially with so many better players available at the position.
St. Louis Rams: Rob Havenstein, OT, Wisconsin: MILLEN HAVING FUN WITH DIRECTV HANNAH'S HORSE Grade
WOW. Did Pisa Tinoisamoa read the wrong name off the card? That was the first thought I had when the former Ram linebacker announced the selection. Rob Havenstein barely made my mock draft; I had him slotted in the seventh round. I guess the Rams didn't watch or scout the Senior Bowl practices because Havenstein was abused in every practice. He didn't look like he belonged. Blegh.
Arizona Cardinals: Markus Golden, DE/OLB, Missouri: B- Grade
After some NFL personnel men looked at a mock draft of mine back in February, I was told to move Markus Golden down to the third or fourth round. Obviously, I didn't talk to anyone from Arizona. Having said that, I don't mind Golden at the end of the second round, given that I admittedly had him at the end of the first frame at some point. Golden could potentially help solve Arizona's pass-rushing issues from the edge.
Denver Broncos: Ty Sambrailo, OT, Colorado State: C Grade
Meh. That's how I feel about this pick. Meh. Ty Sambrailo was a third- or fourth-round prospect for me, so Denver is picking him a bit early. Still, the selection makes sense, as the Broncos had to find an upgrade at the right tackle position to help protect the ancient Peyton Manning.
Dallas Cowboys: Randy Gregory, DE/OLB, Nebraska: A Grade
ESPN is gushing about the Cowboys being the right place for Randy Gregory. Call me crazy, but I don't think a locker room comprised of Dez Bryant and Greg Hardy is a great fit. Having said that, I really like this pick; I had Dallas taking Gregory in the first round of my mock, so this is a steal. Gregory may have been the third-overall selection if he was completely clean off the field. Of course, he's not, and what he has going on behind the scenes is a major concern. NFL personnel have said that they think he may not last five years in the NFL. However, the Cowboys are ready to win now. Tony Romo just turned 35, and Jerry Jones doesn't have many years left either. They're in position to win a Super Bowl, and Gregory should be able to help with his awesome pass-rushing ability.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Ali Marpet, C/G/OT, Hobart: B+ Grade
The Buccaneers moved up for Ali Marpet? Why, you ask? Because the Seahawks were set to select him. Ali Marpet is definitely worth a late second-round pick; he can play every position up front, which is important for a team with multiple holes on its offensive line. Marpet is highly athletic and was coveted by one of the top-drafting teams in the NFL, so this is very promising for the Buccaneers.
Green Bay Packers: Quinten Rollins, CB, Miami of Ohio: B+ Grade
Quinten Rollins, as you may know by now, is a former basketball player who doesn't have much football experience. He's a talented prospect though, and he's well worth this selection, as I had him pegged as a late second-rounder. He also fills a big need; the Packers lost several cornerbacks this offseason, so they had to address the position. I'm just a bit confused that they would draft a corner under six feet tall.
Seattle Seahawks: Frank Clark, DE/OLB, Michigan: B Grade
The Seahawks decided not to pick up the fifth-year option on Bruce Irvin's contract, so here's his replacement. Frank Clark is another ultra-talented pass-rusher who dropped because of character issues. Clark has numerous things on is rap sheet, including domestic violence. He was clear of those charges, but Clark dealt with other issues as well. Still, the Seahawks have taken chances on troubled players before and had it pay off, so this selection could definitely help their team.
New England Patriots: Jordan Richards, S, Stanford: C Grade
2015 NFL Draft Grades - Round: Picks 1-16 | Picks 17-32 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | Team Grades
Leave it to Bill Belichick to select a fifth-round defensive back in the second round. He'll probably make it work too. I guess I'm stubborn, so I'll need to see it happen again. Jordan Richards was seen as a third-day prospect, so this is definitely a reach. Belichick does have a good track record though, so I'll give him the slight benefit of the doubt.
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