Evan Silva

NFL Draft Grades

print article archives RSS

Draft 2013: NFC Draft Grades

Sunday, April 28, 2013

New Orleans Saints

15. Kenny Vaccaro, free safety, Texas.
75. Terron Armstead, left tackle, Arkansas-Pine Bluff.
82. John Jenkins, nose tackle, Georgia.
144. Kenny Stills, receiver, Oklahoma.
183. Rufus Johnson, defensive end, Tarleton State.

Overview: GM Mickey Loomis was working without a second-round pick due to Bountygate, but still landed two day-two values in Armstead and Jenkins and arguably a third on day three in speedster Stills. Vaccaro can team with Malcolm Jenkins to give Rob Ryan two safeties with range and one-on-one matchup skills, likely pushing overpriced box SS Roman Harper out the door. Jenkins is a mammoth athlete with a Haynesworthian ceiling. Johnson is a dominant small schooler with plus measurables, and Loomis has hit on that kind of player before (Akiem Hicks, Jermon Bushrod, Jahri Evans, Marques Colston). The Saints only added five players, but they were all quality picks. The Saints are going to be much better than they were last year.

Grade: C+

New York Giants

19. Justin Pugh, guard/tackle, Syracuse.
49. Johnathan Hankins, defensive tackle, Ohio State.
81. Damontre Moore, defensive end, Texas A&M.
110. Ryan Nassib, quarterback, Syracuse.
152. Cooper Taylor, safety, Richmond.
224. Eric Herman, guard, Ohio.
253. Michael Cox, running back, UMass.

Overview: Much like Ted Thompson in Green Bay and Ozzie Newsome in Baltimore, Giants GM Jerry Reese is a best-available drafter. If he'd have selected his first three players in January and you didn't know the rounds, you would've figured he traded up for three first-round picks. Each player has a flaw -- short arms for Pugh, motor for Hankins, and translatable production for Moore -- but they're all great football players. Moore dominated in the SEC; 8.0 of his 12.5 sacks last year came versus conference opponents. Pugh permitted a half-sack of Nassib and otherwise didn't allow a single hurry. Hankins offers elite potential as a 4-3 nose guard. Nassib was a sheer value pick, while Taylor, Herman, and to a lesser extent Cox offer versatile, "multiple" skill sets and plus measurables. This draft gives the G-Men a needed infusion of young talent, even if only Pugh and perhaps Hankins are surefire first-season contributors.

Grade: B

Philadelphia Eagles

4. Lane Johnson, right tackle, Oklahoma.
35. Zach Ertz, tight end, Stanford.
67. Bennie Logan, defensive tackle, LSU.
98. Matt Barkley, quarterback, USC.
136. Earl Wolff, free safety, North Carolina State.
212. Joe Kruger, defensive end, Utah.
218. Jordan Poyer, cornerback, Oregon State.
239. David King, defensive end, Oklahoma.

Overview: The draftnik community should love this group because aside from seventh-rounder King every member has a big name. They are all identifiable. The first two picks look like surefire hits; Johnson is an outstanding match for Chip Kelly's fast-paced offense as a well-oiled athlete with second- and even third-level blocking skills. Ertz can stretch the field vertically and creates downfield separation better than consensus top tight end Tyler Eifert. Logan and Barkley were odd picks because the former's fit is questionable in Philly's new three-man front and Barkley lacks athleticism in addition to starting-caliber arm strength. All of Philly's rookies look like good values -- particularly Kruger and Poyer -- but this haul included a lot of head scratchers. I still feel confident saying the Eagles' roster improved with this draft, and quite possibly significantly.

Grade: C+

San Francisco 49ers

18. Eric Reid, free safety, LSU.
40. Tank Carradine, outside linebacker, Florida State.
55. Vance McDonald, tight end, Rice.
88. Corey Lemonier, outside linebacker, Auburn.
128. Quinton Patton, receiver, Louisiana Tech.
131. Marcus Lattimore, running back, South Carolina.
157. Quinton Dial, defensive end, Alabama.
180. Nick Moody, linebacker, Florida State.
237. B.J. Daniels, quarterback, South Florida.
246. Carter Bykowski, tackle, Iowa State.
252. Marcus Cooper, cornerback, Rutgers.

Overview: The rich got richer. The 49ers entered Thursday with an NFL-most 13 picks. GM Trent Baalke turned them into very arguably the most impressive haul in the league, along the way picking up a 2014 third-rounder in Friday's trade with the Titans. Only Reid and McDonald may be definite first-year contributors, but that's far more a testament to Baalke's roster building than his individual selections. Carradine is a to-the-whistle edge rusher who along with Lattimore could be "redshirted" as a rookie due to knee woes, before emerging as plus 2014 starters. Patton is a silky smooth route runner with ball skills and insurance on contract-year No. 1 wideout Michael Crabtree. Lemonier might have been a first-rounder had he not played on such a bad Auburn team. San Francisco is filthy rich with pass rush. Baalke is constructing a dynasty.

Grade: A

Seattle Seahawks

62. Christine Michael, running back, Texas A&M.
87. Jordan Hill, defensive tackle, Penn State.
123. Chris Harper, receiver, Kansas State.
137. Jesse Williams, nose tackle, Alabama.
138. Tharold Simon, cornerback, LSU.
158. Luke Willson, tight end, Rice.
194. Spencer Ware, fullback, LSU.
220. Ryan Seymour, guard, Vanderbilt.
231. Ty Powell, defensive end, Harding.
241. Jared Smith, defensive tackle, New Hampshire.
242. Michael Bowie, tackle, NE Oklahoma State.

Overview: Per GM John Schneider, the Seahawks spent Thursday night watching Percy Harvin's YouTube highlight reel after sacrificing the Nos. 25 and 214 picks, and next year's third-rounder in exchange for the NFL's premier slot receiver. Understandable. The Harvin acquisition is factored into Seattle's grade. Schneider finally went on the clock Friday night and simply made picks straight off his board. Marshawn Lynch and Robert Turbin? Who cares. Michael is the best player. He's ours. Harvin, Sidney Rice, Golden Tate, Doug Baldwin? We'll take Harper and his Boldinian skill set. Williams is an immovable beast who makes us better in the trenches. Pick him. Simon is a press-man corner. Perfect scheme fit. Draft him. Late picks were primarily reserved for small schoolers and test freaks. Upside players who don't hurt you if they bust. The Seahawks have drafted just like this every year under Schneider and Pete Carroll. Seems like it's working.

Grade: A-

St. Louis Rams

8. Tavon Austin, receiver, West Virginia.
30. Alec Ogletree, linebacker, Georgia.
71. T.J. McDonald, safety, USC.
92. Stedman Bailey, receiver, West Virginia.
113. Barrett Jones, center/guard, Alabama.
149. Brandon McGee, cornerback, Miami.
160. Zac Stacy, running back, Vanderbilt.

Overview: A year after unearthing small-schoolers Brian Quick, Greg Zuerlein, Trumaine Johnson, and Daryl Richardson, GM Les Snead took an all-big-school approach. This draft was dedicated to playmakers, and St. Louis accomplished its goal even if some members (McDonald, Jones, to a lesser extent Stacy) may struggle with the college-to-pro transition due to major flaws. Austin was the premier offensive-skill player in the 2013 draft, and Snead offset his losses in the trade up to No. 8 by trading down from the 22nd spot. He still came away with a day-one starter in Ogletree, whose character issues are concerning but not as much under coach Jeff Fisher. Bailey was a great value late in round three and fortifies St. Louis' receiver depth behind Austin, Quick, and Chris Givens. The McDonald pick lowers the Rams' grade because he is a tight-hipped, straight-line safety with inconsistent physicality. Jones projects as no more than an NFL reserve.

Grade: B-

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

43. Johnthan Banks, cornerback, Mississippi State.
73. Mike Glennon, quarterback, North Carolina State.
100. Akeem Spence, defensive tackle, Illinois.
126. William Gholston, defensive end, Michigan State.
147. Steven Means, defensive end, Buffalo.
189. Mike James, running back, Miami.

Overview: Not forgotten in the Bucs' grade is the acquisition of Darrelle Revis for the 13th pick, plus a 2014 third-rounder. He is a Hall of Fame talent capable of masking multiple defensive weaknesses and every bit worth the cost. GM Mark Dominik otherwise came away with a slightly questionable draft, noticeably failing to add a pass-catching tight end. Banks is a cornerback/safety 'tweener who was beaten deep too frequently as a senior. Three-technique prospect Spence has ability, but was not a finisher in the Big Ten and is ultimately an underachiever. Same goes for Gholston, who is Vernon's cousin. Means is probably a special teamer at best. James is a plodder on tape, and I wouldn't expect him to make the 53. Glennon is a schematic fit in Tampa's vertical offense. His selection puts Josh Freeman on notice.

Grade: B

Washington Redskins

51. David Amerson, cornerback, North Carolina State.
85. Jordan Reed, tight end, Florida.
119. Phillip Thomas, free safety, Fresno State.
154. Chris Thompson, running back, Florida State.
162. Brandon Jenkins, outside linebacker, Florida State.
191. Bacarri Rambo, free safety, Georgia.
228. Jawan Jamison, running back, Rutgers.

Overview: GM Bruce Allen and coach Mike Shanahan's draft focus was on ballhawks, and they came away with three in 2011 NCAA interceptions leader Amerson, 2012 NCAA picks leader Thomas, and Rambo -- who ranked second to Amerson in INTs two years ago. But Rambo and Thomas can't tackle and Amerson got beat deep more than any cornerback in college football last season. Both running back picks are potential throwaways; Thompson broke his back in 2011 and tore his ACL in 2012, and Jamison doesn't do anything well. Jenkins was a big-time sack specialist in 2010, but is coming off a Lisfranc fracture. Reed is a potential "Joker" tight end who could contribute on passing downs. Washington drafted a slew of big names and added productive collegiates, but I'm not sure they got more than one or two productive NFL starters.

Grade: C

Evan Silva is a senior football editor for He can be found on Twitter .
Email :Evan Silva

Highest Searched Players over the last 7 days

Video Center

    Player News: Week 17

    Player News: Week 17
    Matchups: Gordon, Jeffery

    Matchups: Gordon, Jeffery
    DFS Analysis: Williams/Coleman

    DFS Analysis: Williams/Coleman
    Dose: Cam

    Dose: Cam's Season Ends
    DFS Analysis: GB

    DFS Analysis: GB's Williams
    Dose: Cam Shut Down

    Dose: Cam Shut Down
    Dose: Lindsay Makes Pro Bowl

    Dose: Lindsay Makes Pro Bowl
    Dose: Gordon Eyes Wk 16 Return

    Dose: Gordon Eyes Wk 16 Return