Hierarchy is based on fantasy value rather than defined role on traditional NFL depth chart. This sheet features players in order of overall draft value with positional-rank and bye-week information. One sheet with players broken down by position and including overall rank and bye weeks for leagues that reward each catch with a point. This sheet features players in order of overall draft value with positional-rank and bye-week information for leagues that reward each catch with a point. All cheat sheets are in PDF format. Your computer must be equipped with a PDF file reader in order to access and print the cheat sheet.
To help make this website better, to improve and personalize your experience and for advertising purposes, are you happy to accept cookies and other technologies? Rams are new No. In the past I have done that by initial NFL position, so some players you think of as outside 'backers I have listed as ends, and maybe vice versa. But I definitely was not thinking that way in , so this year's edition is more of the hodgepodge. Getting to the actual players in the class, there was no Ndamukong Suh or Gerald McCoy in this year's draft class.
Then again, that did not distinguish this year's draft class from pretty much any draft class other than 's. Like that class, though, both of the top interior linemen came from the same conference -- in fact, they were from the same state. Nick Fairley was a devastating interior rusher and the player other than Cam Newton who took an average Auburn team to an undefeated national title. Alabama's Marcell Dareus had helped lead a team to a national title of his own and had the strength and ability to affect the game from any point on the defensive line.
Dareus and Fairley were far from alone, though, even on the interior. Illinois' Corey Liuget and Temple's Muhammad Wilkerson looked like first-round picks, Baylor's Phil Taylor was if you wanted a nose tackle and did not mind a past felony assault charge, and Oregon State's Stephen Paea was at least a rock in the middle of the defensive line. Over at defensive end, there were even more players to choose from. The top two both carried potentially major injury risks. Clemson standout Da'Quan Bowers was outstanding against the run and very productive as a pass rusher.
But a December knee injury was not healed at the combine, and he did not work out there. Robert Quinn did not even play at North Carolina in after accepting benefits from an agent and had previously had a tumor removed from his brain.
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If you could look past those facts, he flashed the athleticism to be a dominant pass rusher. Watt was probably a 5-technique end in a rather than a defensive end, and he drew multiple comparisons to former Nebraska first-round pick Adam Carriker. Since Cal was one of the few college defenses at the time to play in a , Cameron Jordan 's experience as a 5-tech made him a straightforward projection to the NFL, but he could also be a base end for a team.
Ditto Cameron Heyward , though Ohio State did not play a And those were just the first-round picks. Because Houston like Miller and Kerrigan, discussed with the linebackers below ended up going in the third round, he was not part of the "official" SackSEER projection included in Football Outsiders Almanac Its preferred sleeper was Nevada's Dontay Moch ; he went to the Bengals with their third-round pick after Cincinnati had previously selected Playmaker Score's favorite receiver Green and LCF's favorite quarterback Dalton.
He was widely regarded as a first-round pick and likely to be a very good player in the NFL. Nobody thought he would be this good.
Everybody who went in the first round was good, by which I mean they have at least 20 sacks and are still producing in the NFL -- except Phil Taylor, who went 21st to the Browns. The closest thing to a "disappointment" outside of Cleveland was Adrian Clayborn , who went 20th to the Buccaneers, and that is because he kicks inside on passing downs. That used to be regarded as a bad thing, instead of a great thing because it means your player is similar to Michael Bennett. Two players in the second round did not live up to expectations. One of them was Bowers, who fell to the Buccaneers at His rookie year was slowed by that knee injury.
He tore his Achilles in his second season. He had offseason knee surgery heading into his fourth season. The other was the other Tar Heel defensive lineman Marvin Austin , whom the Giants selected at 52nd overall. Previously known as the guy who helped turn Kentwan Balmer into a first-round pick I fell for that one myself , he was a mega-recruit and part of a bevy of talented players who ended up at North Carolina through possibly nefarious means nefarious in this case meaning "in violation of NCAA rules," rather than anything potentially bad, and I managed to avoid the temptation of going into A.
Green 's suspension at Georgia. Like Quinn and second-round receiver Greg Little Cleveland, 59th , he had been suspended for and would subsequently be permanently disassociated. Unlike Quinn, he never did much in the NFL. You did well if you picked early. You had less to choose from if you picked later.go here
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Still, even a couple of linemen drafted outside of the top 40 picks turned into very good players. Von Miller was an all-world prospect and potentially dominant pass-rusher, and a linebacker regardless of scheme. Among outside linebackers, Aldon Smith was a really good prospect and possibly the player the Texans would have chosen had they had their pick of things.
A redshirt sophomore, he was growing into his body and showed his toughness by playing through a fractured fibula at Missouri. Ryan Kerrigan from Purdue got all the white pass-rusher cliches J. Watt did not, and like Watt actually deserved them as an All-American in Georgia's transition to a defense let Justin Houston show what he could do as a stand-up rusher, but if you looked past his splash plays he was not as consistent as you would want.
Nobody really liked any of the potential middle linebackers and nobody could agree on which of them, if any, were any good. Looking at the various draft guides, Illinois' Martez Wilson , North Carolina's Quan Sturdivant , and Michigan State's Greg Jones were the players listed first at the position, and Wilson had a neck injury that could have hurt him.
Looking more at the run-and-chase players, another Tar Heel who was actually allowed to step on the field in , Bruce Carter , was the favorite, but everyone agreed he did not often play to his athletic ability. Smith, who went seventh to the 49ers, for the way his personal life blew up off the field? Ayers, who went 39th to the Titans and was benched by his fourth season? Chargers general manager A. Smith, who took a consensus sixth-round pick in Michigan's Jonas Mouton at the bottom of the second round only to find that, no, everybody else had been right and he had been wrong?
Wilson went to the Saints in the third round at 72nd overall and did not make it through his third season. It turns out that really big, really athletic players who flash a couple times a game can turn into really good players. Houston somehow fell to the Chiefs in the third round, 70th overall, and has been a really, really good player. Since we have not yet praised John Schneider for building a ridiculous defense through the draft, we must do so now as the Seahawks found another mainstay in K.
Wright in the fourth round, 99th overall. Yes, Seattle fans, more praise for Schneider is coming soon. Everybody's favorite cornerback was the same: LSU's Patrick Peterson 's combination of elite shutdown corner ability and phenomenal return skills. Some people liked Nebraska's Prince Amukamara nearly as much, notwithstanding his susceptibility to double-moves and doubts about his long speed, doubts that a 4. Potentially joining them as first-round picks were Colorado's Jimmy Smith , who seemed fit for a press man scheme, and Virginia's Ras-I Dowling , who had great size and speed and a long list of injuries.
Overall, though, it was not thought to be a great cornerback draft. If you looked at the safeties, though, the corners started to look a lot better. Neither had the look of a first-round pick. The most intriguing safety, by far, was Florida's Will Hill. He had enough physical ability to be a first-round pick and enough red flags on and off the field to go completely undrafted. Like basically every other non-quarterback high pick in the draft, Peterson has been about as good as advertised.
However, just as good has been the converted wide receiver from Stanford who was CB4 in Russ Lande's draft guide but not in anybody else's top 25 corners. Richard Sherman fell to Seattle in the fifth round, th overall, where John Schneider snatched him up. The third man who deserves mention is someone who was not even drafted: Kansas corner Chris Harris , signed by the Broncos. Sometimes, you take injury risks in the second round and you get an awesome player. Sometimes, you get a complete bust. A year after taking Rob Gronkowski , the Patriots spent the 33rd overall pick on Dowling.
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His extensive injury history followed him to Foxborough, and he played just 12 games between and Buffalo took Da'Norris Searcy , another North Carolina prospect, with the th overall pick, and he might be the best pure safety in the class. That seems almost preposterous, given that Searcy was a part-time player for four years in Buffalo and one in Tennessee, and seems likely to be a part-time player at best in But he did get a very strong contract as a free agent, and the rest of the safety class is miserable.
Moore was benched by the Texans in and did not play in Jarrett did not make it to his third season in Philadelphia 54th overall , not that the Eagles were not warned against taking him or Watkins. As we wrote about the draft, sometimes there just are no good options. The best might have been Hill, who had some good moments after he did indeed go unselected, but that did not last.
Henery was the higher ranked of the two, in part because he was a punter as well. At least some people, though, preferred Oklahoma State's Dan Bailey to him. The Falcons took him in the sixth round, nd overall, but he has not yet attempted a place kick in the NFL. He and Henery were the only kickers or punters drafted.
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Henery was last in the league on kickoffs by our metrics in and did not make it around to kick for Chip Kelly's first season in He joined the Lions that season and missed four of his five field goal attempts all from 40 yards or further out. The Cowboys signed Bailey as an undrafted free agent, and his track record includes going of from 50 yards and beyond. You still should not draft kickers. Our annual Report Card Report and reader poll both liked the Lions' draft a lot. Getting Nick Fairley with the 13th pick was undoubtedly a big part of that, but most people also liked their second-round selections of wide receiver Titus Young 44th and running back Mikel Leshoure 57th.
A good thing, too, because those were their only picks in the top Tampa Bay and those two defensive ends with the first two picks was next alas, my riff on the non-efficacy of doubling up from the Jacksonville chapter of FOA had not yet penetrated the national consciousness , followed by Cleveland and the rewards of the Jones trade. The consensus worst draft went to yes, him again John Schneider and the Seattle Seahawks, followed by Jacksonville and their trade up for a quarterback and Carolina and their selection of a quarterback with the first overall pick.
In the critics' defense, Seattle spent their first-round pick on Alabama offensive lineman James Carpenter. Seattle had given up its third-round pick in the Charlie Whitehurst trade, and sent its second-round pick to Detroit in the Leshoure trade.
Carpenter was not a tackle, and neither third-round guard John Moffitt Wisconsin, 75th nor fourth-round pick Kris Durham Georgia, th panned out. Interestingly, pretty much every team found at least one good contributor, but hardly anybody found more than three. The Broncos also did pretty well with Miller, Rahim Moore , and Orlando Franklin the second round; Thomas in the fourth; and Virgil Green in the seventh, even if you do not give them credit here for Harris. Adrian Clayborn is a perfect example of a guy who is just about a half-step too slow to be an excellent football player.
Spent lots of time in the backfield almost getting to the QB. If Best is wearing a red flag as an injury risk, Rice is sporting fluorescent hazmat tape after his third concussion in 12 months ended his season prematurely last year. With both receivers healthy and poised for bounce-back seasons, Celek will fall back to the third or fourth option in the passing attack. To search for a player use one of two formats: Click to close or press Esc.
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Sports Fantasy March Madness. Chris Wesseling Draft Analysis. Select Another Column Live Blog: Chris Wesseling is a senior football editor and Dynasty league analyst for Rotoworld.