Texans: I was critical of the JJ Watt pick after the first round, but after the Texans added Brandon Harris and Rashad Carmichael, I can live with them passing up Prince Amukamara. Adding Brooks Reed in the second round was also a great move. Anytime you add four difference-making starters with your first four picks (plus a serviceable backup quarterback in round five), you'll get high grades from me.
Late Rounder That May Surprise: QB TJ Yates (5th Round)
Lions: Their first three picks were perfect: DT Nick Fairley, WR Titus Young, and RB Mikel Leshoure. If they can add some cornerbacks through free agency, this team can have legitimate playoff aspirations.
Late Rounder That May Surprise: LB Doug Hogue (5th Round)
Eagles: They added a ton of talent that will contribute right away. Really solid from start to finish. It's like my golf game...except the exact opposite.
Late Rounder That May Surprise: LB Brian Rolle (6th Round)
Bucs: After picking two defenisve tackles last year, they picked up two defensive ends this year including Da'Quan Bowers who slipped to 51st overall. He'll prove to be a great risk.
Late Rounder That May Surprise: S Ahmad Black (5th Round)
Saints: They traded their 2012 first rounder but came away with an impressive slew of talent. When was the last time one team had the Offensive and Defensive Rookies of the Year? The Lions in 1967. Can the Saints DE Cameron Jordan and RB Mark Ingram duplicate that feat?
Late Rounder That May Surprise: DE Greg Romeus (7th Round)
Packers: Good idea- Protecting Aaron Rodgers and giving him more weapons at his disposal. That's exactly what Green Bay did. I think Randall Cobb is this year's Dexter McCluster.
Late Rounder That May Surprise: DT Lawrence Guy (7th Round)
Bengals: Cincy got the draft's best player with the fourth overall pick. Win. Although I'm not a huge Andy Dalton fan, Jay Gruden seems to be, and I tend to value his opinion. Dontay Moch is a workout beast who owns the Nevada career sack record. He bolsters an already impressive linebacking corps (Keith Rivers and Rey Maualaga). Clint Boling will also start immediately.
Late Rounder That May Surprise: S Robert Sands (5th Round)
Giants: As has been customary over the last few years, the Giants got great value with a number of their picks, specifically their first three. CB Prince Amukamara was a top-10 talent, DT Marvin Austin could have been a top-20 pick, and Jerrel Jernigan is a sleeper. I also like tackling machine LB Greg Jones in the sixth. Well done, again.
Late Rounder That May Surprise: RB Da'Rel Scott (7th Round)
Jets: As a Jets fan, I would have loved Da'Quan Bowers in the first round. Besides that, I think they got solid talent across the board. QB Greg McElroy is the same player as Andy Dalton but he was selected five rounds later. All six of their picks can make the team.
Late Rounder That May Surprise: WR Jeremy Kerley (5th Round)
Chiefs: I'm a believer in WR Jon Baldwin, and I like how they addressed their need at DE/OLB with Justin Houston and Allen Bailey. This defensive line is now full of top draft picks with these two along with Tamba Hali, Glenn Dorsey, and Tyson Jackson.
Late Rounder That May Surprise: DT Jerrell Powe (6th Round)
Bears: Chicago only had five picks this year, but they made the most of them, especially their first two. OT Gabe Carimi and DT Stephen "Bench-Pressing Freak" Paea will start from Day One.
Late Rounder That May Surprise: QB Nathan Enderle (5th Round)
Titans: Tennessee decided to draft guys that love football. Sounds smart, but it's not always easy to identify players that fit this mold. Yes, they took QB Jake Locker too highly but they made up for it the rest of the way.
Late Rounder That May Surprise: DT Karl Klug (5th Round)
Falcons: This draft (and some of next year's draft) clearly hinges on Julio Jones. They dealt five picks to move up 21 spots in the first round to nab Jones with the sixth pick. Atlanta was the best team in the NFC last year, and I respect them for thinking they are only one superstar away from putting them over the top. Hopefully for them, Jones is that guy.
Late Rounder That May Surprise: RB Jacquizz Rodgers (5th Round)
Bills: Truthfully, any warm body would be an improvement along this defensive front, but Marcell Dareus will be an especially welcome addition. Aaron Williams will also help, but the defensive backfield wasn't a pressing need. They also chose not to address the quarterbacking situation so Ryan Fitzpatrick it will be in 2011.
Late Rounder That May Surprise: CB Justin Rogers (7th Round)
Vikings: They may have reached a little for ponder, but they redeemed themselves by grabbing TE Kyle Rudolph in round two, DE Christian Ballard in round four, and Brandon Burton in round five. Solid depth.
Late Rounder That May Surprise: LB Ross Homan (6th Round)
Rams: They gave Sam Bradford weapons to work and strengthened the defensive front seven. Solid.
Late Rounder That May Surprise: WR Greg Salas (4th Round)
Colts: A typically solid Bill Polian draft. Peyton Manning was doing backflips, err, gave a half fistpump when he saw the first two picks were offensive linemen. I thought DT Drake Nevis had a chance to go at the back end of round one so getting him in the third was a steal.
Late Rounder That May Surprise: RB Delone Carter (4th Round)
Ravens: Not sure I can define it, but Jimmy Smith, Torrey Smith, and Tyrod Taylor just fit the " Baltimore mold." Jimmy fills a cavernous hole at corner, but I am not sure I trust to him to stay on his best behavior. Then again, Ray Lewis got away with murder so maybe Jimmy has a shot after all. Taylor reminds me of another Smith, Troy, whom the Ravens drafted in 2007.
Late Rounder That May Surprise: RB Anthony Allen (7th Round)
Cardinals: I can't argue with the Patrick Peterson pick because he was one of the three best players in the draft, but they failed to address serious areas of need - QB, LB, OL - until late in the draft, making luxury picks at RB like Ryan Williams.
Late Rounder That May Surprise: LB Quan Sturdivant (6th Round)
Patriots: How many years in a row can they trade down? It's hard to question Bill Belichick, but I would have liked to have seen them trade up to get an impact defensive end. Ryan Mallett was my favorite quarterback in the draft. Not sure if we'll ever be able to see what he could have been now that he's locked in as a backup for five years.
Late Rounder That May Surprise: OT Marcus Cannon (5th Round)
Redskins: Washington finally traded down to pick up more picks, but it cost them in high end talent.
Late Rounder That May Surprise: WR Niles Paul (5th Round)
Broncos: Von Miller and Rahim Moore, good. Beyond that, lots of questions.
Late Rounder That May Surprise: TE Virgil Green (7th Round)
Steelers: It's really hard to question Pittsburgh when it comes to the draft because they hit a lot more than they miss, but I wasn't crazy about this class.
Late Rounder That May Surprise: RB Baron Batch (7th Round)
Chargers: Of their eight picks, none excites me aside from first rounder Corey Liuget.
Late Rounder That May Surprise: RB Jordan Todman (6th Round)
Browns: Where is the offense going to come from? Teams are about to stack nine on the box and stuff Peyton Hillis. Plus, he's on the cover of Madden. Things could be really ugly in Cleveland this year. Pray the Indians stay hot or this city might implode.
Late Rounder That May Surprise: RB Owen Marecic (4th Round)
Panthers: Every single one of Carolina's picks - including the top overall pick Cam Newton - is a boom or bust prospect. Swinging for the fences is not the way to build a team.
Late Rounder That May Surprise: OT Lee Ziemba (7th Round)
49ers: They picked DE Aldon Smith and QB Colin Kaepernick too highly. I'm not excited about many of their 10 picks.
Late Rounder That May Surprise: WR Ronald Johnson (6th Round)
Cowboys: Under Jason Garrett, Dallas' offense was borderline great. The defense was another story. It makes no sense that six of their eight picks were on the defensive side of the ball. They bolstered areas of the team that were already strong - linebacker and running back. Thumbs down.
Late Rounder That May Surprise: RB Shaun Chapas (7th Round)
Dolphins: Bor-ring. OL Mike Pouncey is not as good as his brother. He is also not a center (can't snap in shotgun). Nothing to get excited about here.
Late Rounder That May Surprise: WR Edmond Gates (4th Round)
Seahawks: Another snoozefest here. That's what happens when you take guards with your first two picks.
Late Rounder That May Surprise: WR Kris Durham (4th Round)
Jaguars: A quarterback is not what this team needs. David Garrard was given no weapons with which to work. Blaine Gabbert will be put in the same situation now. Makes no sense. Hate it. Hate it. Hate it.
Late Rounder That May Surprise: WR Cecil Shorts (4th Round)
Raiders: What did Oakland accomplish in this draft? They got more speed but very little discernible talent.
Late Rounder That May Surprise: RB Taiwan Jones (4th Round)