Brandon Kravitz Grades Each Pick in Round 1

We've been waiting months for it, and it's finally over and done. Now it's time for GRADES! How did your team do according to my sophisticated grading system? Find out below...

  1. Jags- Trevor Lawrence: A++
    1. Kind of impossible to screw this one up. He's instantly a top 15 QB in the NFL and will help the Jags win right away.
  2. Jets- Zach Wilson: A
    1. I'm not quite as in love with Wilson as the Jets, but I do think he has the potential to be special. Maybe just maybe the Jets got their first real QB since Broadway Joe.
  3. 49ers- Trey Lance: A+
    1. Lance was the right pick over Mac Jones, his upside is tremendous, and if he pans out, he'll be scary in that Shanahan system.
  4. Falcons- Kyle Pitts: B+
    1. Only reason they get dinged is because they had a load of options here that included...drafting a QB or trading back. Instead, they make a historic pick with the highest-drafted TE in history. I think he can be that good, but its a thin margin for error when he basically needs to be a HOF'er for this to make sense.
  5. Bengals- Ja'Marr Chase: A
    1. Chase was clearly the best WR in this class, he is a complete stud, and I love the Burrow/Chase reunion tour. I'm sure they were back and forth between Sewell and Chase, but I think they made the right call @ the end of the day. A true #1 WR is tougher to find than a solid LT.
  6. Dolphins- Jaylen Waddle: B+
    1. Let me be clear, I love the pick personally. I'm not sure if Sewell wasn't the right pick for the Phins here, or finding another trade partner since Pitts/Chase were off the board...however, the fan in me is over the moon with this pick. I thought Waddle was better than Devonta Smith all along.
  7. Lions- Penei Sewell: C+
    1. The top left tackle fell right in their lap, I get that. But leaving Fields on the board here will come back to haunt them.
  8. Panthers- Jaycee Horn: D
    1. Same as Detroit, except I'm not convinced the gap between Horn and the next best DB is as wide as Sewell to the next best LT. Bad pick.
  9. Broncos- Patrick Surtain: B
    1. I actually think Surtain is better than Horn, so plus there. Not as upset about Fields not going here, wouldn't be surprised if Denver had their eyes set on Aaron Rodgers at this point.
  10. Eagles- Devonta Smith: A
    1. They get an A for the sheer fact that they jumped the Giants to get the WR that NYG was likely going after one pick later. That level of divisional shade is appreciated, and the Eagles are in desperate need of offensive weaponry.
  11. Bears- Justin Fields: A+++
    1. Best move in round 1. Happy for Bears fans here as their organization tries to right the wrongs of the past. I think Fields will be in the MVP discussion within the next 2 years.
  12. Cowboys- Micah Parsons: B+
    1. I'm a big fan of Parsons, don't know that OLB was the biggest need for this team but they do need to get better defensively, and he is incredibly productive sideline to sideline.
  13. Chargers- Rashawn Slater: B
    1. The most obvious pick outside of the top 2. They sat there and got the guy they needed. Pretty straight forward.
  14. Jets- Alijah Vera-Tucker: B+
    1. Look @ the Jets making good decisions. Get the QB, get the LT, and then go get the WR. Building the right way...don't think they needed to move up 9 spots for it, a bit pricey for my blood, but I like where their heads at.
  15. Patriots- Mac Jones: A+
    1. For Mac Jones to be successful, he was going to need to fall in one of two places. This is one of those places. The Patriots sit and wait for a QB to fall, it happens, and Bill wins again.
  16. Cardinals- Zaven Collins: B-
    1. Slight reach but love the player. Cards had very few glaring needs, so this pick wasn't likely to blow us away.
  17. Raiders- Alex Leatherwood: F
    1. The Raiders have been drafting like morons since Mike Mayock and Jon Gruden took over.
  18. Dolphins- Jaelen Phillips: A+
    1. Best edge rusher in this class, some health concerns, but crazy talented. Love the pick and glad he was selected over Kwity Paye.
  19. Washington- Jamin Davis: C+
    1. He'll help a quickly improving defense but the 6'4 middle linebacker isn't as valuable in today's NFL as they've been in the past. This team should've been more aggressive in the QB market.
  20. Giants- Kadarius Toney: A
    1. Moving back when they got snaked on the Devonta Smith pick, grabbing a future 1st rounder, and arguably the 2nd most explosive receiver (after Waddle) in this draft...the shrewdest move in the Gettleman era.
  21. Colts- Kwity Paye: B+
    1. Good spot for Paye in the draft. The Colts have so much talent its ridiculous, love the team they're building.
  22. Titans- Caleb Farley: B-
    1. I don't hate the pick, some argue that just based on talent, coverage, and ability, he's the best corner in the draft. But medicals are an issue and WR is a massive need for this team. They wiffed hard in round 1 last year, can't do it 2 years in a row.
  23. Vikings- Christian Darrisaw: A
    1. I had him as my #2 LT on the board. Vikings live in the trenches, this fits their culture. Darrisaw only missed 1 game in his college career, super talented, super durable.
  24. Steelers- Najee Harris: B+
    1. I was convinced that no RB's were going in round 1, so I'm salty in the fact that these next 2 picks don't look great with that prediction. However, Harris is an instant impact player on a team that won 11 straight last year.
  25. Jags- Travis Etienne: C+
    1. The true grade on this pick will be made when we see who the Jags take with the first pick in round 2...but they need to get better defensively, and there will be backs available in round 2. Etienne is good but he's a little too CJ Spiller for my blood. I do like the Clemson pairing though. RIP James Robinson's fantasy value.
  26. Browns- Greg Newsome: B+
    1. Newsome + Denzel Ward, that's today's NFL. 1 dominant corner isn't enough these days. They have potentially the best DB's in the AFC North now.
  27. Ravens- Rashod Bateman: A
    1. To say that a big, physical WR was a need for the Ravens would be the understatement of the draft. Perfect fit.
  28. Saints- Payton Turner: C+
    1. I don't know much about Turner, so I'll try not to hold that against New Orleans too much. They have a Super Bowl roster, so this picks won't tank them if it doesn't workout. He's 6'6 268, dude is a monster size wise.
  29. Packers- Eric Stokes: F
    1. Nothing against Stokes, he's a phenomenal athelte. But Rodgers just told you he wanted out, and you drafted a DB. No awareness.
  30. Bills- Greg Rousseau: B
    1. Draft experts soured on him significantly through the draft process, not sure he's ready to step in and be super productive but this is another situation where he doesn't need to be great to make an impact, the Bills just need defensive depth with upside, and they get it here.
  31. Ravens- Jayson Oweh: A
    1. Maybe its just 'In Ravens I trust' or the fact that he had the most ridiculous of all ridiculous pro days. The dude is 6'5 257 and runs a 4.3 30. That's insanity.
  32. Bucs- Joe Tryon: Incomplete
    1. Doesn't matter. They could've drafted a bologna sandwich, they're still the Super Bowl favorites.

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2021 NFL Draft

photo: getty images

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