Kansas City Chiefs: B
The only part of the Chiefs’ draft I truly didn’t like was their selection of Dontari Poe at 11th overall. Poe was a bit of a wildcard going into the draft, with his draft stock fluctuating wildly between the end of the first round and the top 10. The Chiefs brought in two additional offensive linemen with their 2nd and 3rd round selections, beefing up a unit that looks to be very solid in 2012.
The Chiefs’ draft lacked the flash of some of the other teams drafting near the top end, but they got solid value for their picks. While I don’t personally like Poe as a top 15 pick, there are a lot of guys out there that think he can be dominant in the NFL. That pick could come to define this year’s draft for the Chiefs.
San Diego Chargers: B
Like the Chiefs before them, I penalized the Chargers significantly for their first round pick of Melvin Ingram with the 18th overall pick. Shea McClellin would have been, in my mind, better suited to give the Chargers a pass rusher coming from the linebacking corps instead of as a down lineman.
The Chargers continued their defensive trend, taking DT Kendall Reyes in the 2nd round and SS Brandon Taylor in the 3rd round. Those 3 defensive players at the top of the Chargers’ draft class should form the core component of their defense for many years to come. Overall, a solid draft for the Chargers. They definitely didn’t waste this year’s draft.
Denver Broncos: A-
The Broncos had a stout start to their draft. They brought in DT Derek Wolfe with their first pick (4th pick of the 2nd round), and QB Brock Osweiler followed later in the 2nd round. I love the Osweiler pick, because he’ll have plenty of time to study with and around Peyton Manning. Really, there’s no better position for a rookie quarterback to be in than studying under Peyton Manning.
Ronnie Hillman, an RB, rounded out the Broncos’ first three picks. He’s a guy that’ll get in the game as a situational runner, and the added depth at RB will be much appreciated by Manning and head coach John Fox. This was one of the most well-rounded draft classes, and the Broncos did a great job in putting it together.
Oakland Raiders: Incomplete
The Raiders get an “incomplete” grade because of their personnel department’s failures in the past. The Raiders’ first pick came on the 32nd pick of the 3rd round. That’s just not the way to build a football team in the NFL, and I don’t think it’s even fair to the new regime to grade their draft class at all. If the criteria for grading is how many starters/core players they likely produced, they’d get an “F,” so we’ll just leave them with the incomplete grade. To be fair, they likely picked up a handful of fringe players that could make a difference somewhere down the line, but I think it’s safe to say this is the forgotten draft class of Oakland.