2016 NFL Draft Grades

With all the grades flying around from this year’s college draft, I thought I’d go back and look at the first round from 2016. It’s been 3 years now and teams have had a chance to pick up fifth-year options –or not. I’ve used, injury, production, general influence on games and the team’s decision to pick up the fifth year as a guideline to determine who did the best job of selecting a player that has impacted his team.

Round 1- 2016 Draft

Overall PickTeamPlayerPositionSchoolGradeNotes
1RamsGoffQBCalA A bit up/down

2EaglesWentzQBN Dak StAInj- really good

3ChargersBosaDEOhio StA+Special

4CowboysElliottRBOhio StA+Special

5JaguarsRamseyDCFlor StA Better on field than off

6RavensStanleyOTNotre DameB+Solid, not special

749’ersBucknerDEOregonA+21 sacks in 3 years

8TitansConklinOTMich StB Athletic abil not equal to $
9BearsFloydOB GeorgiaB-Surprised yr five not picked up-15 sacks
10GiantsAppleDCOhio StDTraded for cup of coffee
11BuccaneersHargreavesDCFloridaCSolid, not special

12SaintsRankinsDTLouisvilleB+Hasn’t missed a gm last 2 years
13DolphinsTunsilOT Ole MissB+1st yr at OG-OT since-solid
14RaidersJosephDSW VirginiaCBox DS-5th yr not picked up
15BrownsColemanWRBaylorFTotal bust-can’t happen
16LionsDeckerOTOhio StB+Solid player-can win with
17FalconsNealDSFloridaB Reckless box DS

18ColtsKellyOCAlabamaB Solid, smart-can win with
19BillsLawsonDEClemsonC5th yr not picked -productions?
20JetsLeeLBOhio StC-Roll player-5th yr declined
21TexansFullerWRNore DameB Can’t find this kinda speed+
22RedskinsDoctsonWRTCUC-Possession guy-lks speed
23VikingsTreadwellWROle MissD+Game too fast for him

24BengalsJacksonDCHoustonC1 yr starter-jury still out
25SteelersBurnsDCMiamiC-Benched last yr-inconsistent player
26BroncosLynchQBMemphisFTotal failure in this scheme
27PackersClarkDTUCLAB Solid player-very gd value here
2849’ersGarnettOGStanfordDNo 5th yr option- find these type in rds 2/3
29CardinalsNkemdicheDTOle MissFNever had put it together
30PanthersButlerDTLa TechC+Rotational guy, fills need
31SeahawksIfediOTTexas A&MC+Hasn’t improved- has talent

*only 31 first round picks this year

Here are a couple conclusions one can glean from the above.

  1. WR’s have and always will be a crap shoot. These players struggle to be productive early.
  2. Beware of skilled position players from spread offenses i.e. QB Paxton Lynch, Memphis, WR’s Corey Coleman, Baylor, Josh Doctson, TCU and Laquon Treadwell, Ole Miss all have struggled to put it together at the NFL level. My personal opinion is that these tempo-oriented (where the goal is to run 80 plays a game or more) spread offenses that don’t require players to process are something to stay away from. It’s a totally different game, mentally and physically, for all of these players on offense once they get to the NFL. The NFL game calls for a lot more reading coverage, thinking and adjusting on the fly and perfected technique. It’s not about running play after play. Making the jump to the next level is really hard.  
  3. Teams that are struggling in 2019 can usually look back to inability to draft in prior years. It’s hard to overcome first round failures(D’s and F’s).

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