2022 NFL Draft is behind us! Who did particularly well? Which teams have bigger question marks than before the draft? Who was able to score with their decisions – and who leaves the forehead? Draft grades summarize three eventful days.
First of all, I would like to point out that it is of course difficult to evaluate the individual classes properly so soon after the draft. We simply do not know how the individual players in the NFL will develop. The draft is in itself a lottery game.
But since we, like the teams, have dealt with the individual players and the situation of the respective teams long in advance, it makes sense in the first instance to assess how well the teams ultimately maneuvered the draft and whether they were doing well on paper. currently has managed to get better.
That should still be the basis of everything the team does in this phase of the offseason.
But enough of the preliminary teasing, here they are SPOX Draft grades for 2022!
NFL Draft Ratings 2022
Draft Grades 2022: AFC East
- CB Kaiir Elam (1st round)
- RB James Cook (2nd round)
- LB Terrel Bernard (3rd round)
- WR Khalil Shakir (5th round)
- P Matt Araiza (Round 6)
- CB Christian Benford (6th round)
- OT Luke Tenuta (Round 6)
- LB Baylon Spector (7th round)
On the surface, the bills have served all the important needs with their drafts. With their first choice, they appeared Kaiir Elam, who should start directly against Tre’Davious White, who returns after a cruciate ligament fracture. This was the biggest hole in this defense, so this move is a commendable move for this player. After that, however, it gets a little more complicated.
In round 2, James Cook came on as a running back, which can certainly be a factor in the short passing game. But at that point (63rd pick) he somehow felt like a reach, because with Duke Johnson and Zack Moss you already have two other running backs in this category in the squad. Dalvin Cook’s brother, however, is not a crazy choice, but a very solid choice. The third need was linebacker, and here the relatively small Terrel Bernard is clearly a reach in round 3. Better linebackers would have been there.
Point Good Matt Araiza in the sixth round with his strong left leg fits perfectly into Buffalo, where it can get extremely windy at times. And getting him in round 6 is just the right time. I’m also excited about wide receiver Khalil Shakir, who could be a good choice. He has his strengths in the castle and after the catch, but will probably stay in the background for a year and learn from Jamison Crowder. Crowder only has a one-year contract, under which Shakir could take over.
- LB Channing Tindall (3rd round)
- WR Erik Ezukanma (4th round)
- LB Cameron Goode (7th round)
- QB Skylar Thompson (Round 7)
The early elections went to the hill trade and are already very well invested. When the dolphins were allowed to pick, they did very right. Channing Tindall flew slightly under the radar in Georgia, but also had to line up behind Nakobe Dean and Quay Walker in the Bulldogs’ linebacker corps. He is a very good down hill linebacker with great range and good speed. In addition, he was to be an effective blitzer in Miami’s defense.
Erik Ezukanma is a good size as an external receiver and can fill the vacancy that was opened at DeVante Parker’s departure. He is considered a good catcher and runs efficiently after the catch. But his size alone should help him see the field, as the rest of the dolphins’ receivers tend to be small and agile. Cameron Goode, on the other hand, is a good athlete who can at least have value on the special team, while the Thompson pick looks more like a camp body. A little uninspired.
New England Patriots
- AND Cole Strange (1st round)
- WR Tyquan Thornton (Round 2)
- CB Marcus Jones (3rd round)
- DB Jack Jones (Round 4)
- RB Pierre Strong Jr (Round 4)
- QB Bailey Zappe (4th round)
- RB Kevin Harris (Round 6)
- EDGE Sam Roberts (Round 6)
- OG Chasen Hines (6th round)
- Olympics Andrew Stueber (Round 7)
“Strange” is probably the best way to describe the Patriots draft. Overall, one can certainly say that they certainly had a plan. This was to rely on better athletics and above all speed. Tyquan Thornton was the fastest player in the class based on 40-yard times in the pre-draft process. In addition, Marcus Jones is also a very fast player for the secondary. The latter, however, is very small for a cornerback in the NFL, though that could help against the Dolphins’ small, fast receivers. But he may not be as versatile in the NFL as he was in college.
But we have to talk about the team’s first choice. To give up the 21st election per. trading to acquire more later choices was a good move. But pulling Cole Strange in round 1 still seems strange. He would certainly also have been available on day 2. So alone he is not a particularly good choice at position 29. I think he can start right away and do well, but it certainly would not have gone wrong to choose another here or further down the draft to maneuver.
Thornton also appears to have been picked quite early, but he adds a new element to the offense with his speed. The two running backs were exciting, because it already telegraphs what the plan with Damien Harris is – he will be a free agent after the 2022 season. Bailey Zappe, on the other hand, is a choice for the future as a new backup and certainly not too early for that in round 4. Andrew Stueber in round 7, on the other hand, could be a good grip that could improve markedly in a year or two.
The bottom line this class could be a good one, but there are a lot of risks involved for now. In addition, any value considerations were simply thrown up.
New York Jets
- CB Ahmad “Sauce” Gardner (1st round)
- WR Garrett Wilson (1st round)
- EDGE Jermaine Johnson (1st round)
- RB Breece Hall (2nd round)
- TE Jeremy Ruckert (3rd round)
- OT Max Mitchell (Round 4)
- EDGE Michael Clemons (Round 4)
One of the best drafts of 2022 was the New York Jets. First, they hit directly on Sauce Gardner and picked up one of the best cornerbacks in the class. I do not know if it was the desired plan in advance, but they responded very well to the situation. And the situation was that cornerback was a big need and the other top corner, Derek Stingley, had already gone off the board. Wilson at 10 was the hoped-for reinforcement for the offense.
And the fact that they also got one of the best edge defenders in Jermaine Johnson thanks to a trade, rounded off a very good 1st round perfectly. The Jets have strengthened massively on three levels in the first round. And then Breece Hall fits in very well in round 2. The idea of building more talent around Zach Wilson is definitely the right approach. Ruckert, on the other hand, can get a little early in round 3 as he is best known as a blocker. But it should also have its value, as the Jets with CJ Uzomah and Tyler Conklin already have very good goals in their squad in this position and would rather need a block.
In addition, Max Mitchell was a tackle that improves the depth of the squad, which can be helpful given Mekhi Becton’s frequent injury problems.