These Live 2017 NFL Draft Grades will be posted minutes after each pick in the 2017 NFL Draft. Follow @walterfootball
2017 NFL Draft Grades - Round: Picks 1-16
| Picks 17-32
| NFL Draft Team Grades
2017 NFL Mock Draft
Denver Broncos: Jake Butt, TE, Michigan: A+ Grade
John Elway tweeted out that he was sweating out Jake Butt being available, and I don't blame him. Despite the torn ACL, I thought Butt could've gone in the third round. He's a huge steal in the fifth frame, and I can't imagine liking this more than any other pick in this round. Butt could emerge as a potent weapon in Denver's offense in 2018 and beyond.
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San Francisco 49ers: George Kittle, TE, 49ers: A Grade
Here's another great tight end pick. George Kittle was a third-round prospect for me, as he was productive at Iowa and then went on to test very well athletically. Kittle also blocks very well to boot. This is an excellent selection by the 49ers, despite not needing a tight end.
Chicago Bears: Jordan Morgan, G, Kutztown: B- Grade
Three of Chicago's four picks heading into this one earned Millens, so they desperately needed to bounce back. Well, they finally did. This isn't a great pick, but Jordan Morgan at least fits the range, as I had him chosen 19 selections later than this. He doesn't fill a need either, as Chicago's interior offensive line is great, but he'll provide solid depth.
Jacksonville Jaguars: Blair Brown, LB, Ohio: A Grade
I had Blair Brown being chosen in the middle of the third round, so I love this value. Perhaps he fell because he has just one season of high production, but he's very athletic and instinctive, and I think he could become a starter for Jacksonville at some point.
Atlanta Falcons: Damontae Kazee, CB, San Diego State: B+ Grade
Damontae Kazee fits the range, as I had him slated as a fifth-round pick, and teams can never have enough cornerback depth. Kazee seems like he'll play in the slot, where he could snatch a decent amount of interceptions if he gets the playing time because of his positive ball skills.
New York Jets: Jordan Leggett, TE, Clemson: A Grade
And yet another great tight end value pick in the fifth round. This tight end class is tremendous, and I'm surprised that some of these players didn't go earlier. The Jets won't complain, as they might be able to finally fill their massive need at the position. Leggett is a poor blocker, but figures to be a productive pass-catcher.
Los Angeles Chargers: Desmond King, S/CB, Iowa: A+ Grade
I wrote earlier that I didn't think I'd love a pick more than Jake Butt in the fifth round, but that apparently isn't the case anymore. Desmond King is an absolute steal in the fifth round. Back in the fall, he was projected to be a fringe first-round pick! King was torched at the Senior Bowl, and he dropped in our mock as a result, but I still thought he'd be chosen in the third frame. The consensus is that he'll have to move to safety, but I don't see why he wouldn't perform well there. King could potentially start for the Chargers sooner rather than later.
Carolina Panthers: Corn Elder, CB, Miami: B Grade
Corn Elder may sound like an aging farmer, but he's really a raw cornerback who is still learning the position after transitioning from running back. Elder fits the range in the fifth round, and he could be a decent slot corner for the Panthers down the road.
Cincinnati Bengals: Jake Elliott, K, Memphis: C Grade
A kicker in the fifth round? Meh. I know the Bengals had field-goal woes in 2016, but this is still a bit early for a kicker.
Washington Redskins: Jeremy Sprinkle, TE, Arkansas: C Grade
Finally, a tight end who doesn't provide great value in the fifth round. On the contrary, Sprinkle was taken a round or two too early. Sprinkle projects as a very good blocker, but has some off-the-field issues.
Tennessee Titans: Jayon Brown, LB, UCLA: C+ Grade
Jayon Brown was extremely productive at UCLA, and based on his play, he could've gone in the third round. However, Brown is undersized and could really struggle in run support, so I had him slotted in the sixth frame. At the very worst, he projects as a solid special-teams player.
Atlanta Falcons: Brian Hill, RB, Wyoming: A Grade
This is a great value pick for the Falcons, as Brian Hill was seen as a potential third-round prospect by some, including myself. Hill is a very talented runner, but really needs to work on his pass-protection skills. The Falcons are loaded at running back for now, but Devonta Freeman is an impending free agent after this season, so Hill provides insurance.
Arizona Cardinals: Will Holden, OT, Vanderbilt: B+ Grade
Another team was set to take Will Holden several picks later than this in the fifth round, so the value is certainly right. The Vanderbilt blocker has done well in pass protection, but he's not athletic, so he could be stuck at right tackle. Still, the Cardinals needed depth up front, and Holden won't embarrass himself if he has to start.
Indianapolis Colts: Nate Hairston, CB, Temple: C Grade
I didn't have Nate Hairston being drafted in my final mock, but I did have him slotted in the seventh round at some point. Either way, this is a reach. Hairston is a major project, as he's a former receiver converting to cornerback, so he's still learning the position.
Baltimore Ravens: Jermaine Eluemunor, G, Texas A&M: A- Grade
Jermaine Eluemunor is physically gifted, but doesn't have much experience playing football. He has tremendous upside though, so I like taking a chance on him in the middle of the fifth round. I think he could've gone a bit earlier than this, so I like this pick.
Cleveland Browns: Roderick Johnson, OT, Florida State: C+ Grade
Roderick Johnson was seen as a potential first-round pick by many last summer. I had him in the opening round in my mock until team sources told us that he was extremely overrated and belonged in the late rounds. Johnson struggled in pass protection all year, so here we are. Johnson can run block well, but doesn't have much upside as a sub-par athlete.
Indianapolis Colts: Anthony Walker, ILB, Northwestern: B Grade
Anthony Walker really fell from grace, as he was a potential second-round pick prior to the 2016 season. However, Walker's tape showed that he was very stiff in his change-of-direction ability. He then tested poorly at the combine. Still, the Colts are getting a productive player who could be a solid backup and special-teams player.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Jeremy McNichols, RB, Boise State: A- Grade
Doug Martin really struggled last year, so the Buccaneers had to find a new running back. There was speculation that they'd choose Dalvin Cook, but Jeremy McNichols makes sense on Day 3. McNichols is a strong receiver and thrives in pass protection. His injury concerns are the only issue.
Buffalo Bills: Matt Milano, LB, Boston College: C Grade
Matt Milano is a reach here, but not as an egregious one, as I thought his ceiling was the sixth round. Matt Milano is too undersized to be on the field very often, and he wasn't even that great in college. He projects to be a quality special-teams player, but the fifth round is too early for him.
Miami Dolphins: Isaac Asiata, G, Utah: A- Grade
Isaac Asiata is a powerful run blocker who probably would've been chosen earlier than this if he weren't turning 25 at some point during the season. Asiata is a solid prospect, however, and he'll be able to open big running lanes for Jay Ajayi.
Detroit Lions: Jamal Agnew, CB, San Diego: D Grade
I had Jamal Agnew as a UDFA, so I'm not a fan of this pick. I won't give any team a Millen at this juncture, but it's close. Agnew is not a very good athlete, and he's only 5-9, so he could really struggle to make the roster.
Philadelphia Eagles: Shelton Gibson, WR/KR, West Virginia: B Grade
I once slotted Shelton Gibson in the third round of my mock draft, but he finished up at No. 168 in my projections, so I think the range is certainly correct. Gibson looked like he had good deep speed at West Virginia, but ran poorly at the combine. He also struggled with drops at West Virginia. However, Gibson projects a solid return specialist, so he could help in that regard.
New York Giants: Avery Moss, DE, Youngstown State: D Grade
As mentioned before, I'm not going to give out Millen grades in the fifth round, so the Giants are spared. It makes sense that they added an edge rusher, but Avery Moss was kicked out of Nebraska and also tested poorly in pre-draft workouts. I don't know what the upside is with this pick.
Oakland Raiders: Marquel Lee, LB, Wake Forest: C+ Grade
Marquel Lee was a productive player at Wake Forest. I had him in the sixth round, so the range is pretty close. However, Lee tested poorly during the pre-draft process, so he could just be an average backup and a special-teamer in the pros.
Houston Texans: Treston Decoud, S, Oregon State: C Grade
Treston Decoud is a big, physical cornerback who will have to move to safety in the pros. That's fine for the Texans, who needed help at the position. However, I didn't have Decoud getting drafted because of his extensive concussion history. He's a huge risk, but could pay off if he stops getting head injuries.
Minnesota Vikings: Rodney Adams, WR, South Florida: C- Grade
Rodney Adams was a fringe draftable prospect, so this is way too early for him. Adams was very productive at South Florida, but he dropped way too many passes and also had issues with fumbling. The Vikings needed a receiver to challenge Laquon Treadwell, but I don't think Adams can do that.
Buffalo Bills: Nathan Peterman, QB, Pittsburgh: A Grade
The Bills aren't big fans of Tyrod Taylor, so even though they already had Cardale Jones, it's not a surprise that they selected Nathan Peterman. They have no direct successor for Taylor, but Peterman and Jones can battle it out. It's not an ideal situation, but perhaps one of them will step up. I like this pick, as Peterman was slotted in the third round.
Denver Broncos: Isaiah McKenzie, WR/KR, Broncos: C Grade
It's doubtful that Isaiah McKenzie will play much receiver for the Broncos, as he wasn't productive whatsoever at Georgia. He was a dynamic returner on special teams, however, so he'll be able to help in that regard. I had McKenzie as a seventh-rounder/UDFA, but I don't think this is a bad pick.
Pittsburgh Steelers: Brian Allen, CB, Utah: A- Grade
Brian Allen is a bit of a project, as he used to play receiver, so he's still learning how to be a cornerback. However, he's long, fast and agile, and he tested extremely well. His upside is tremendous, and I thought his range in the fifth round made sense. I like this pick a lot.
Atlanta Falcons: Eric Saubert, TE, Drake: B+ Grade
Eric Saubert is an athletic tight end who was productive at Drake. He's a bit of a project, but he has big-time upside, and he could pass Austin Hooper if Hooper doesn't develop as expected. This is a solid choice.
Green Bay Packers: DeAngelo Yancey, WR, Purdue: B- Grade
DeAngelo Yancey drew a lot of interest prior to the draft, so even though I had him in the sixth round, I'm not surprised that he was taken a bit earlier. Yancey struggled with passes at Purdue, but he tested well, so there's upside. The Packers may need a replacement for Davante Adams next year.
Cincinnati Bengals: J.J. Dielman, G, Utah: C Grade
I was close to placing J.J. Dielman in the seventh round of my mock draft, but he didn't quite make the cut. He easily could have though, as he has upside and athleticism. The Bengals are desperate for blocking, so the pick is logical.
San Francisco 49ers: Trent Taylor, WR, Louisiana Tech: C+ Grade
I didn't have Trent Taylor drafted in my mock, but he was on my board, so he was close. Taylor will be a slot receiver for the 49ers, and he's agile enough that it's not crazy to think that he could become a Julian Edelman-type player. I'm not saying he'll become that, but the testing numbers say he at least has a chance. Still, this is a bit early for him, as he could just as easily fail to make the roster.
Miami Dolphins: Davon Godchaux, DT, LSU: C- Grade
I'm not too sure about this pick. It potentially fills a need, but Davon Godchaux is a low-effort player who was arrested for assaulting a woman last summer. The charges were dropped, but Godchaux is too much of a risk with not enough payoff.
Arizona Cardinals: T.J. Logan, RB, North Carolina: B+ Grade
This pick makes a lot of sense, as the Cardinals needed some insurance behind David Johnson. T.J. Logan could've been chosen a round earlier, so it's not a surprise that Arizona was able to obtain value with the sure-handed Logan, who ran a 4.37 40 at the combine.
Minnesota Vikings: Danny Isidora, G, Miami: A- Grade
I had Danny Isidora off the board 36 picks earlier than this, so I really like the value the Vikings are getting with him. Isidora tested poorly at the combine, but has some very good tape from his time at Miami. The Vikings needed an interior lineman, so Isidora could potentially start at some point for them.
New York Jets: Dylan Donahue, DE/OLB, West Georgia: C+ Grade
Dylan Donahue nearly made my mock draft, but he didn't make the cut. He could have though, as he was very productive in college, albeit at a small school. Donahue is 25, so that's a negative, but he could end up being a rotational pass-rusher for the Jets.
Green Bay Packers: Aaron Jones, RB, UTEP: A Grade
I like this pick a lot, and I wouldn't be surprised at all if Aaron Jones becomes Green Bay's starting running back at some point. He was productive at UTEP and displayed good vision, and then he went on to test at an extremely high level during the pre-draft process. He easily could've been chosen much earlier than this, so I think Green Bay got a steal.
Kansas City Chiefs: Ukeme Eligwe, LB, Georgia Southern: D Grade
This is just a poor pick. Ukeme Eligwe is someone with character and injury concerns. He should've been a UDFA, so there's no reason to reach like this, even if it's at the end of the fifth round.
Philadelphia Eagles: Nate Gerry, S, Nebraska: B+ Grade
2017 NFL Draft Grades - Round: Picks 1-16 | Picks 17-32 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | NFL Draft Team Grades
I actually had Nate Gerry going No. 184 overall, but to the Dolphins. He fits the exact range, and I like this pick for the Eagles. He provides some needed safety depth, and if he emerges as a starter, the Eagles could move Malcolm Jenkins to nickel. Gerry projects as a run-stuffing safety with decent athleticism.
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