These Live 2016 NFL Draft Grades will be posted minutes after each pick in the 2016 NFL Draft. Follow @walterfootball
2016 NFL Draft Grades - Round: Picks 1-16
| Picks 17-32
| NFL Draft Team Grades
2016 NFL Mock Draft
Cleveland Browns: Emmanuel Ogbah, DE, Oklahoma State I CHANGED MY MILLEN Grade
I said I'd give the Browns a Millen if they didn't take Myles Jack at No. 32. Well, OK, I guess I lied, but I'm still marking Cleveland down for not taking perhaps the best talent in the 2016 NFL Draft atop Round 2. The reason this is not a Millen is because I like Emmanuel Ogbah. However, I don't know about his scheme fit in a 3-4, so this is still pretty bad. I don't get why Cleveland didn't pick Jack.
Actually, you know what? I changed my mind. This is a Millen. The Browns are a losing franchise and needed a winner like Jack. This is a Millen.
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Tennessee Titans: Kevin Dodd, DE, Clemson B- Grade
This pick makes sense. Kevin Dodd was projected to go somewhere in the 30-35 range. Thus, the range is right, though I'd like this pick a lot more if Myles Jack wasn't on the board. At any rate, I wonder where the Titans will play Dodd. He can play both five-technique and outside linebacker. His versatility is definitely intriguing, and he should be a solid player for Tennessee.
Dallas Cowboys: Jaylon Smith, LB, Notre Dame B Grade
Wow. WOW. I can't believe this. Some teams had Jaylon Smith as a sixth- or seventh-round prospect because they believed there was a good chance that he would never be able to play in the NFL. There were some rumblings that he'd go at the end of the third round, but this is unreal. Maybe the Dallas doctors know something the rest of the league doesn't, but this pick could obviously really pan out. Smith could be a perennial Pro Bowler if he ever gets back to 100 percent. I'm giving the Cowboys a solid grade, but I can't go into the A range because of the enormous risk. I'd like this a lot better if Dallas took him in the third round.
San Diego Chargers: Hunter Henry, TE, Arkansas C+ Grade
It was expected that the Chargers would take a tight end at some point after losing Ladarius Green to the Steelers in free agency. Hunter Henry is the top tight end in the class, and he was viewed as a high second-round prospect, so this selection makes a ton of sense. The Chargers probably should've gone with Myles Jack, but I won't knock them down too much for it.
Jacksonville Jaguars: Myles Jack, LB, UCLA A+ Grade
I usually penalize teams for moving up in the 2016 NFL Draft, as history has shown that it's not a good idea to squander resources. However, the Jaguars shifted up just two spots to obtain someone who was in consideration at No. 5 overall. That earns an automatic A+.
This might just be the best pick of the draft. Excluding his injury, Jack was seen as perhaps the best player in this class. He would've been a top-five selection had he not hurt his knee. He fell out of the first round because teams were scared off, but given that it's become apparent that Jack doesn't need micro-fracture knee surgery, there's no excuse for the Browns and Chargers for passing on him. Credit the Jaguars, who are killing this draft. Oh, and also major dap to Charlie Campbell, who called this hours ago on Twitter!
Kansas City Chiefs: Chris Jones, DE/DT, Mississippi State: A- Grade
Surprise, surprise, Andy Reid bolstered either the offensive or defensive line. Some things never change, apparently. In this case, however, it's something Reid had to do. He lost Mike DeVito in free agency, so he had a hole at defensive end. Chris Jones will definitely fill that void, and he's someone who could've been chosen at the end of the first round. In fact, had the Patriots owned the 29th pick, I think I would've mocked Jones to them.
Miami Dolphins: Xavien Howard, CB, Baylor C+ Grade
This would've been a great pick had the Dolphins not traded for it. With lots of cornerbacks available, I don't think they needed to do that, however. Why surrender resources to do something like that? Having said that, I'm not giving Miami a poor grade, as a C+ seems about right. Howard should be a good player for them, and he's filling a big need for sure.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Noah Spence, DE, Eastern Kentucky A Grade
The Buccaneers have taken chances on players with character concerns before, and it has panned out for this new regime thus far, for the most part. Noah Spence fits into that theme. If he wasn't attached with any off-the-field issues, he would've been a top-10 pick. He's extremely talented, and he fits exactly what the Buccaneers needed. They were desperate for a pass-rusher, and Spence was the best player available who could fill that void.
New York Giants: Sterling Shepard, WR, Oklahoma B Grade
No surprise that the Giants drafted a receiver early. They were desperate to find a second wideout across from Odell Beckham Jr. It seems like there were higher-rated receivers on the board, such as Tyler Boyd or Michael Thomas, but Sterling Shepard makes sense as a second-round selection. Unlike New York's initial pick in the 2016 NFL Draft, this is a solid choice that isn't a reach.
Buffalo Bills: Reggie Ragland, ILB, Alabama A Grade
I had the Bills picking Reggie Ragland in the first round of my 2016 NFL Mock Draft, and had Shaq Lawson not dropped to them, it sounds like they may have taken him as high as No. 19. Thus, this is an incredible value for a very underrated player who can play all three downs. The Bills had to move up for Ragland, but rightfully so, since there were so many teams that could've taken him prior to No. 49.
Baltimore Ravens: Kamalei Correa, DE/OLB, Boise State A- Grade
This pick, in a vacuum, is probably worth a "B." I heard some buzz about Kamalei Correa possibility sneaking into the end of the first round, but he definitely belonged in the middle of the second frame. The reason I've bumped this up to an A-, however, is because Baltimore was able to trade down twice. Smart teams understand the importance of accumulating as many picks as possible, so it's no surprise that the Ravens have begun doing so once again.
Tennessee Titans: Austin Johnson, NT, Penn State B Grade
Austin Johnson tested very poorly at the Combine, so it's nice to see that he didn't slip at all, as this was his natural range. Johnson is a very skilled player, and Tennessee's defensive line will definitely be better with him in the mix. Help was needed up front, so this pick makes a ton of sense.
Oakland Raiders: Jihad Ward, DT, Illinois B Grade
I'm glad to get one right in my mock re-draft. I figured that the Raiders would be interested in Jihad Ward when Sheldon Rankins was unavailable to them at No. 14. Ward fills a big need on the defensive front, which lost Justin Tuck and perhaps Mario Edwards (to injury). Ward was expected to be chosen in the middle of the second round, so the range obviously makes sense.
Tennessee Titans: Derrick Henry, RB, Alabama C+ Grade
The Titans could afford to take a luxury with three selections in the second round, so this isn't the worst decision. However, I'm not a big fan of it. Alabama running backs have a dubious history in the NFL, as Nick Saban constantly runs them into the ground (or they are products of the offensive line). Teams were concerned about Henry for that reason, and I thought it was possible that he would drop to the end of the second frame. I would've preferred the Titans to fill a big need in their secondary rather than select someone who will just play behind DeMarco Murray - though it is nice that they'll have insurance behind such an injury-prone runner.
Detroit Lions: A'Shawn Robinson, DT, Alabama C- Grade
A'Shawn Robinson said some sketchy things in some team interviews, prompting him to drop. Teams had concerns about his passion for football, causing him to fall even more. This might be seen as a great value, but Robinson was a projected mid second-round pick with everything factored in. I don't like this pick very much. This isn't a great fit, and I'm not convinced that Robinson is going to give Detroit his full effort.
New Orleans Saints: Michael Thomas, WR, Ohio State B+ Grade
I'm sure many expected the Saints to select an edge rusher, a linebacker or a defensive back, but a receiver was needed as well. With Marques Colston gone, the only options Drew Brees had at receiver were Brandin Cooks and Willie Snead. A No. 2 wideout was needed, and Michael Thomas was seen as one of the better receivers available heading into the second round. This is another solid selection from New Orleans.
Green Bay Packers: Jason Spriggs, OT, Indiana C Grade
It's surprising to see the Packers make such a splash move like this. It doesn't seem necessary either. Jason Spriggs tested extremely well at the Combine, but he has several things to work on before becoming a starter, as he's pretty raw. I think Green Bay could've waited on tackle depth and perhaps a starter for 2017. There were just other needs to address, and Green Bay could've obtained a better football player without trading up.
Seattle Seahawks: Jarran Reed, DT, Alabama B+ Grade
When I saw that the Seahawks surrendered a fourth-round pick for this selection, I said that it better be a good player, or else they'd earn a terrible grade. Well, they definitely made a solid choice. Jarran Reed is a good player, but he tested very poorly. Seattle taking a low SPARQ player will surprise quite a few, but in truth, the team doesn't completely focus on that. Reed will help a weak defensive interior for sure.
Houston Texans: Nick Martin, C, Notre Dame B+ Grade
The Texans apparently love the Fighting Irish! I'm sure they saw much of Nick Martin when they were scouting William Fuller, and it's not a surprise that they fell in love with the Notre Dame center. Martin is a very skilled offensive lineman, and he figures to be an instant upgrade over departed center Ben Jones, who wasn't as good as the money he obtained from the Titans this spring. This probably would've been an A- had Houston not moved up, but I can understand why it did so.
New York Jets: Christian Hackenberg, QB, Penn State C Grade
The Jets fan the NFL Network camera caught was shouting, "We got a QB!" Well, we'll see. I'm a Penn State alumnus, and I've called Christian Hackenberg a trap. He has supreme talent, but there are numerous things wrong. He's inconsistent with his throws; he struggles to process information quickly; and he also had some locker-room issues at Penn State. I would've taken him in the third round. This is a bit too early for my blood, and I don't know how he fits Chan Gailey's offense.
Atlanta Falcons: Deion Jones, LB, LSU C+ Grade
I was shocked to see the Falcons pass on Darron Lee and reach for Keanu Neal in the first round. This is yet another reach, though not nearly as blatant. Deion Jones seemed like a mid third-round prospect, but he definitely fits a need. It's also not completely surprising to see him chosen, as he fits Atlanta's athleticism requirement. Jones has great upside, but his floor is pretty low as well, as he doesn't seem to have the strength to play very much right now.
Washington Redskins: Su'a Cravens, S/LB, USC B+ Grade
It'll be interesting to see where the Redskins use Su'a Cravens. He can fill both of their voids at safety and linebacker, and I'm sure the Redskins won't be scared to use Cravens in both roles as a hybrid safety-linebacker to cover tight ends. I had Cravens in the first round of my mock a couple of months ago (I since moved him down to No. 62), so I think the range is right to take him at this spot.
Minnesota Vikings: Mackensie Alexander, CB, Clemson A+ Grade
Wow, what a steal. Mackensie Alexander would've been a first-round pick if he didn't have the sort of character concerns that Tony Pauline reported about a week ago. Alexander doesn't fill an immediate need, but he was just way too talented to pass up. Also, it should be noted that the Vikings will have some corners hitting free agency after 2016, so Alexander could step in and start in 2017.
Cincinnati Bengals: Tyler Boyd, WR, Pittsburgh A Grade
Tyler Boyd had some character concerns, so the Bengals taking him is hardly a surprise. That's not a knock on the team, as they've done incredibly well with such players over the years. I think Boyd will work out similarly, as he was the top-rated receiver (or perhaps tied with Michael Thomas) heading into Day 2. The Bengals obviously had to find a receiver after losing Marvin Jones and missing out on all of their first-round candidates (Josh Doctson, Corey Coleman, William Fuller), and they certainly obtained a good one.
Chicago Bears: Cody Whitehair, G/OT/C, Kansas State A+ Grade
Wow, what a great pick. An A+ for the Bears, for sure. First of all, Cody Whitehair was projected by some to be chosen at the end of the first round, so they're getting great value at this spot. Second, Whitehair fills a big need; Chicago's offensive line had its issues heading into the draft, and Whitehair can pretty much play every single position up front (though he's best as a guard). And third, Chicago obtained him after trading down twice! This is excellent drafting by the Bears.
Indianapolis Colts: T.J. Green, S, Clemson A- Grade
The Colts moved down and obtained a prospect who could've been chosen a bit earlier than this selection. I like it. T.J. Green is highly athletic, and it's possible that he might be able to play cornerback in the NFL. If not, he can settle in at safety, which was also a huge need for the Colts entering this weekend.
Pittsburgh Steelers: Sean Davis, S/CB, Maryland B Grade
This is a lot better than the first-round pick. Sean Davis is a versatile player who might be able to play both cornerback and safety. He's a big prospect who has tons of athleticism and upside. Davis needs to work on becoming a better football player, as he's very raw, but he could fill a big need in the secondary.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Roberto Aguayo, K, Florida State KICK THE KIELBASA INTO THE BACKSIDE MILLEN Grade
Oh, man. I'm always giddy when I get to give out a Millen grade, and this was a Millen grade if I've ever seen one. Look, I get that kickers are more important now, and I understand that Roberto Aguayo projects as a great kicker. But, come on. Another team that really needed Aguayo was planning on taking him in the fourth round, which would've been justified. The Buccaneers grabbed him in the second - and surrendered a fourth to move up to get him! Who were the Buccaneers leaping to get a kicker? Why would they make such a stupid decision like this!?
New England Patriots: Cyrus Jones, CB, Alabama: C Grade
We've reported that Bill Belichick has given up on drafts he dislikes, #yoloing his picks and taking seventh-rounders way earlier than they should be chosen. This isn't a crazy reach like Jordan Richards, but the Patriots took Jones about a round earlier than he should've gone. New England has two corners with expiring contracts after this season, so Jones makes sense from that perspective, but there were better players available at the position.
New Orleans Saints: Vonn Bell, S, Ohio State A Grade
The Saints are making some solid picks in the draft this year, and this one certainly qualifies. It's actually New Orleans' best choice, just based solely on a value perspective. Bell was projected by some to be chosen at the end of the first round, or perhaps at the top of the second frame. It was a surprise to see him fall this far, but the Saints won't complain, as Bell adds much-needed depth to the secondary.
Carolina Panthers: James Bradberry, CB, Samford C+ Grade
The Panthers are not the team I thought would take James Bradberry. The Seahawks, Buccaneers, Falcons etc. seemed like the likely home for him. Bradberry is the type of tall, long, athletic corner that Seattle typically takes in the middle rounds, and I thought they might in the third frame. However, this is too early for Bradberry, who is pretty raw.
Denver Broncos: Adam Gotsis, DE/DT, Georgia Tech MORE LIKE ADAM GOTKIELBASA-SIS MILLEN Grade
2016 NFL Draft Grades - Round: Picks 1-16 | Picks 17-32 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | NFL Draft Team Grades
Look up the definition of "reach" in the dictionary, and you might just... well, you won't find this pick because that wouldn't make any sense, but you probably should. This is a huge reach for sure. I can tell you for certain that one team whose information we highly trust told us that they were targeting Adam Gotsis in the Round 4-5 range. I hadn't heard of anyone ranking Gotsis this highly, so I think this deserves a Millen, despite the fact that it fills a need.
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