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
Indianapolis Colts: D'Joun Smith, CB, Florida Atlantic: B+ Grade
This makes sense. D'Joun Smith was a third-round prospect, and Indianapolis had to address the secondary, especially at cornerback across from Vontae Davis. This would be an ordinary "B" grade, but I'm bumping this up to a B+ because the Colts moved down and picked up an extra selection.
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Tennessee Titans: Jeremiah Poutasi, G/OT, Utah: B Grade
Another logical pick for another AFC South team. Jeremiah Poutasi makes sense for the Titans, who had to find an upgrade at either guard or right tackle. He can play both positions and should offer an upgrade in front of Marcus Mariota.
Jacksonville Jaguars: A.J. Cann, G, South Carolina: B+ Grade
A.J. Cann could've gone in the second half of the previous round, so there is some value here. I'm all for any pick the Jaguars would've made on the offensive line. Blake Bortles had no chance last year behind a putrid offensive line, and Cann should definitely help with the blocking.
Oakland Raiders: Clive Walford, TE, Miami: B+ Grade
I had Clive Walford going around this range, so I like this pick quite a bit. The Raiders need weapons for Derek Carr, and I think it's a good idea to add an intermediate target to his arsenal. Walford is a great athlete who can block, so he should see the field sooner rather than later.
Seattle Seahawks: Tyler Lockett, WR, Kansas State: C+ Grade
Tyler Lockett would've earned the Seahawks a B+ grade if they simply took him at this spot, but they traded multiple picks to get him. I don't know about that move, especially with several decent receivers still available, including Jaelen Strong and Rashad Greene. Lockett should be able to help Seattle's receiving corps, but I think Seattle gave up too much to get him.
Houston Texans: Jaelen Strong, WR, Arizona State: A+ Grade
As you can tell, I'm not a fan of teams trading up. Not unless it's a special circumstance. I'd say this is a special circumstance. Jaelen Strong easily could've gone at the end of the first round. Watching him fall out of the second frame was shocking. The Texans had to be equally surprised, as they moved up to snag him. Strong should be able to develop into Houston's No. 2 receiver across from DeAndre Hopkins.
Chicago Bears: Hroniss Grasu, C, Oregon: B+ Grade
The Bears lost Roberto Garza, so they needed a new center. Hroniss Grasu was considered by some to be the top center in this class after Cameron Erving (yes, Browns, Erving is a center). Grasu fits the range as a third-rounder and he fills a need, so there's no arguing this selection.
St. Louis Rams: Jamon Brown, OT, Louisville: D Grade
Can someone alert the Rams and tell them that we aren't in the seventh round? What are they doing? Why are they picking offensive linemen who should be going in the final rounds of the draft? They're taking players at positions of need, but... I just don't get it.
Atlanta Falcons: Tevin Coleman, RB, Indiana: A+ Grade
I love this pick. First of all, Tevin Coleman should've gone earlier than this. He could have easily be chosen at the beginning of the previous round, so I think he's a steal at No. 73. Also, Coleman fills a big need. The Falcons only had Devonta Freeman at running back, and he did not look good last year, so Coleman figures to be an upgrade.
New York Giants: Owa Odighizuwa, DE, UCLA: A Grade
The Giants just landed a pass-rushing steal who dropped into the third round? When has that ever happened? Jerry Reese is the master of obtaining great values on the defensive line, and Owa Odighizuwa is his latest one. The UCLA product should've gone in the first half of the previous round, so I like this pick, especially since Odighizuwa fills a need up front.
New Orleans Saints: Garrett Grayson, QB, Colorado State: B Grade
I guess Ian Rapoport won't be punching anyone in his no-no-special-place (see the NFL Draft Day 2 Preview for that reference). The Saints were rumored to take Bryce Petty, but I never bought into that. Garrett Grayson makes more sense, as he was the third-best quarterback available behind Jameis Winston and Marcus Mariota. Grayson will learn behind Drew Brees for a few seasons and should be able to step in at some point down the road.
Kansas City Chiefs: Chris Conley, WR, Georgia: B- Grade
Chris Conley is one of the most athletic players in this class. He doesn't know how to play football very well yet, but if he learns, he could emerge as a viable starting receiver. I don't know why Kansas City felt the need to move up, though. The thinking is that they wanted to leap ahead of Cleveland for a wideout, but if a team is concerned that the Browns are going to draft a certain prospect, that player probably isn't good to begin with.
Cleveland Browns: Duke Johnson, RB, Miami: B Grade
This is a solid pick, but I'd like it a lot more if the Browns actually, you know, needed a running back. They already have two decent ones, but Duke Johnson should be able to fight for some touches, especially with Mike Pettine's chaotic and confusing game-planning. Johnson fits the range, and I like him as a prospect, but there's a chance he'll only be the third running back.
New Orleans Saints: P.J. Williams, CB/S, Florida State: A Grade
P.J. Williams was once viewed as a first-round prospect, but was arrested for a DUI. He was cleared of those charges, so I thought his draft stock could bounce back, but apparently not. The Saints aren't complaining. Williams is a talented cornerback who could emerge as a starter down the road. The Saints added Brandon Browner at corner this offseason, but they still needed to address this position.
San Francisco 49ers: Eli Harold, DE/OLB, Virginia: A+ Grade
I've bashed the 49ers' draft thus far, but I have to say that I love this pick. I had Eli Harold going to the Patriots at the end of the first round, though I believed the right spot for him was the second frame. Harold won't contribute right away, but with Aldon Smith bound to be off the team soon, Harold could emerge as a starter in the near future.
Detroit Lions: Alex Carter, CB, Stanford: A- Grade
Here's the Alex Carter pick. I thought Carter would go to the Steelers or Packers at the end of the second round, given that he fit their scheme so well. The Lions have to be thrilled that he dropped; Carter should be able to start eventually once Rashean Mathis moves on.
Buffalo Bills: John Miller, G, Louisville: C+ Grade
I had John Miller going to the Bills - but in the fifth round. Having said that, I don't think this is a bad pick, or anything. I had Miller going a bit later than I wanted to, so Buffalo is reaching by about a round. Still, the Bills are filling a big need on the interior of their offensive line, so I don't have a problem with this selection.
New York Jets: Lorenzo Mauldin, DE/OLB, Louisville: B Grade
This pick definitely makes sense. The Jets had to find an edge rusher - they were projected to take one at No. 6 overall before Leonard Williams dropped to them - and Lorenzo Mauldin fits the range as a third-round prospect. This is a solid choice.
San Diego Chargers: Craig Mager, CB, Texas State: C+ Grade
This is a bit too early for Craig Mager - I had him as a fourth-round prospect - but the selection makes sense to me. The Chargers had no chance in a meeting against the Broncos last year when their cornerbacks were injured, so San Diego had to find some depth at the position.
Philadelphia Eagles: Jordan Hicks, LB, Texas: C+ Grade
A non-Pac-12 player for Chip Kelly!? Is this even possible!? Jordan Hicks is extremely athletic though, so this pick at least makes sense from that perspective. Hicks can be a very good player in the NFL, but only if he stays healthy. He has injury concerns, so he could be spending lots of time healing his wounds along with Sam Bradford, DeMarco Murray and Kiko Alonso. Oh, and this makes it apparent that Mychal Kendricks is gone.
Cincinnati Bengals: Tyler Kroft, TE, Rutgers: B- Grade
Somewhere, Bill Belichick locked himself in a closet and began weeping uncontrollably, as a Rutgers player was chosen before he got to snatch him off the board. The Bengals were looking for a tight end to replace Jermaine Gresham, and Tyler Kroft figures to play well for them. I had Kroft as a fourth-rounder, but taking him in the middle of the third isn't too much of a reach.
Arizona Cardinals: David Johnson, RB, Northern Iowa: A Grade
ESPN is talking up Sean Mannion as of this writing, but David Johnson is a much better, more-significant pick. Johnson was one of the stars of the Senior Bowl, making a name for himself coming out of Northern Iowa. I thought he'd go earlier than this in the 50-70 range, so the Cardinals are getting quite a bargain with him. He'll complement Andre Ellington extremely well.
Pittsburgh Steelers: Sammie Coates, WR, Auburn: A Grade
Man, I've correctly mocked all three positions to the Steelers, but I've had the wrong players. I love this pick though, as the Steelers are selecting another talented player who dropped into their lap. Sammie Coates easily could've gone in the second round, but dropped because he, well, drops a lot of passes. That's something that can be coached up. Coates' athleticism, on the other hand, cannot. He has major bust potential, but his ceiling is extremely high.
Minnesota Vikings: Danielle Hunter, DE/OLB, LSU: B+ Grade
Danielle Hunter's draft stock was all over the place. Some had him as a second-round prospect. One team we spoke to scoffed at this, listing him as a fifth-round prospect. This range should be right for him. Hunter isn't much of a football player right now, but he has the athleticism to develop into a strong starter. The good thing is that Hunter doesn't have to play much right away. He'll have time to eventually emerge as a key player down the road.
St. Louis Rams: Sean Mannion, QB, Oregon State: C Grade
This is one of the Devin Funchess selections the Panthers curiously traded away. The Rams, however, aren't taking advantage of Carolina's error, drafting a quarterback who some didn't think was going to be taken in the first five rounds. Mannion has mechanical issues on top of his poor pocket awareness, and he was responsible for a ton of turnovers throughout his collegiate career. The Rams probably could've waited another round to take him.
Baltimore Ravens: Carl Davis, DT, Iowa: A+ Grade
Ozzie Newsome with another A+ pick. Shocker. Carl Davis has first-round talent, but we thought he would drop because he interviewed extremely poorly at the Senior Bowl. Taking him in the second would've been fine, but snagging him in the third frame is a downright steal. The Ravens had to find a replacement up front for Haloti Ngata. Some fans panicked during free agency, but they should've known that Newsome would find a solution.
Dallas Cowboys: Chaz Green, OT, Florida: B+ Grade
Chaz Green is one of Charlie's draft sleepers. I thought he'd go a bit later than this, but I still like the pick. The Cowboys wanted to upgrade the offensive line because Doug Free won't be around much longer, so Green could step in as a starter as early as 2016.
Denver Broncos: Jeff Heuerman, TE, Ohio State: B Grade
I think I had Jeff Heuerman slotted to the Broncos at this juncture in one of my updates. Thus, I can't really argue the pick, as it makes a ton of sense. Heuerman fits the range as a late third-round prospect, and he definitely fills a need in the wake of Julius Thomas' departure to Jacksonville.
Indianapolis Colts: Henry Anderson, DE/DT, Stanford: B Grade
I heard during draft week that Henry Anderson might be pushed into the second round, which I thought was a bit early for him. This is the right range. Anderson fits perfectly into Indianapolis' defense, and he could eventually take over as a starter once the newly acquired Kendall Langford moves on.
Green Bay Packers: Ty Montgomery, WR/KR, Stanford: B Grade
Ty Montgomery was a Round 3-4 prospect, so the range is right for him. Some may question what the Packers want with yet another receiver, but Montgomery will be able to play special teams as a kick-returner right away. He won't see many offensive reps unless there are numerous injuries, but he'll still be able to make an impact because of his special-teams ability.
Washington Redskins: Matt Jones, RB, Florida: D Grade
The Redskins needed a third-down running back in the wake of Roy Helu's departure. Matt Jones could fill that role, but the problem with this selection is twofold: First, it's unwise to select "just" a third-down back this early; there were better running backs available. Second, Jones is a reach. He would've made sense in the sixth round, but not here.
Cleveland Browns: Xavier Cooper, DE/DT, Washington State: A- Grade
The Browns had major issues stopping the run late in the year, so they had to make multiple upgrades on the defensive line. They selected Danny Shelton in the first round, and now Xavier Cooper was added to complement him. Cooper is an athletic lineman who could have been chosen a bit earlier than this. It's a solid choice for the Browns.
New England Patriots: Geneo Grissom, DE/OLB, Oklahoma: C- Grade
If the Browns were making these picks, I would be bashing them more. I'm hesitant to do that with Bill Belichick pulling the trigger, but I don't understand them. Much like Jordan Richards, Geneo Grissom is a reach. He's an average athlete and football player who probably should've gone in the sixth round. He doesn't satisfy a glaring need either, so I just don't get it.
Kansas City Chiefs: Steve Nelson, CB, Oregon State: B Grade
Steve Nelson probably could have gone early in the third round without being deemed much of a reach, so the range definitely makes sense. Nelson also fills a need. Sure, Kansas City selected Marcus Peters in the first round, but Nelson will be able to play in the slot. If anything, he'll provide decent value for a team that needs to find a way to beat Peyton Manning.
Cincinnati Bengals: Paul Dawson, LB, TCU: A- Grade
2015 NFL Draft Grades - Round: Picks 1-16 | Picks 17-32 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | Team Grades
The Bengals were aiming to upgrade the linebacker spot; Vontaze Burfict has injury issues, while other players at the position have expiring contracts soon. Paul Dawson could have gone a bit earlier than this without being called a reach, so I like this selection for the Bengals. Dawson will begin as a backup, but he figures to be very effective on special teams before he emerges as a starter down the road.
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