It’s time to see how your team really did in the 2018 NFL Draft, with grades for each squad.
The 2018 NFL Draft has finally reached its conclusion and every team will tell their fans they aced the event. We know that isn’t true. Some teams deserve high marks for their work this week while other front offices should be fired before they return to their home cities.
These evaluations will take you division by division through the entire NFL. We’ll grade each team on their total haul from the draft. Some attention will be paid to the team’s ability to fill needs, but mostly we’re talking about overall talent acquisition. The best franchises in the league worry about talent first, and need second.
These marks aren’t just based on the first round either. Plenty of media members get too caught up in what happens on the draft’s first day. That’s certainly a big part of our calculations, but you also need to take a look at what each team did with the later round picks. Oftentimes those will end up being the gems that really allow teams to turn their rosters into legitimate Super Bowl contenders.
Without further delay, let’s take a run through each of the NFL’s eight divisions and see how each team grades out.
Buffalo Bills: D+
The Bills entered the Draft with a clear mandate to find a franchise quarterback. Josh Allen has the arm strength to handle the terrible weather in New York, but wind and snow will only exacerbate his accuracy issues.
Buffalo’s other first round selection, linebacker Tremaine Edmunds has a lot of physical tools but doesn’t see the game very well. He’s too much of a project to take that early.
Ultimately, the Bills entered this draft with a lot of assets and came away with more questions than answers.
Miami Dolphins: A-
The Dolphins absolutely nailed their first two picks in terms of value. Minkah Fitzpatrick inexplicably fell to them in the first round and they didn’t hesitate to snap him up. Grabbing Mike Gesicki in the second round was also a coup. He should give Ryan Tannehill a lot of support next season.
You also can’t sleep on the team’s fourth-round selection Kalen Ballage. He’s got a chance to contribute early on as well. All in all it was a solid effort by the Dolphins.
New England Patriots: C
It’s dangerous to second guess Bill Belichick and the Pats’ front office, but they didn’t blow anyone away with this draft. They really reached for offensive lineman Isaiah Wynn in Round 1. There were definitely better inside players available when he came off the board. If he doesn’t successfully make the move to tackle then taking him there will go down as a big mistake.
Grabbing Sony Michel with their other first round did make up for the Wynn miss to a large degree. Medical concerns about his knee are valid, but they shouldn’t come into play anytime soon. Michel should enjoy a productive four or five years in the Patriots system.
Look for Duke Dawson to also come out of this draft class looking good. He can’t play outside corner at all but should be able to help New England immediately as a nickel corner. This was a decent haul for the Pats but nothing special.
New York Jets: B
The Jets paid dearly to move up in Round 1 but their selection of Sam Darnold was rock solid. Unfortunately, the move greatly limited their ability to fill other holes in the roster further down the draft.
Perry Nickerson in the sixth round could prove to be a gem, but there’s not a lot else to get excited about here. This draft was all about Darnold for the Jets.