Grading All 32 1st-Round Picks

1. Rams – Sam Bradford – QB -┬á Oklahoma
We’ve assumed for months now that this would be the selection, so no one was surprised when Goodell made the announcement. There are mixed reviews on Bradford, but I believe he’ll be a great fit in St. Louis. His accuracy, coupled with his work ethic will make him an elite quarterback in this league for years to come.
Grade: A+
DraftAce would have picked: Bradford

2. Lions – Ndamukong Suh – DT – Oklahoma State
The Lions haven’t made many great picks in recent years, but this could turn the tables. Suh has all the skills to be an immediate star in this league. I was worried Martin Mayhew might take a page from his former boss’ book and get cute by taking Trent Williams or Russell Okung, but fortunately he went with the obvious choice.
Grade: A+
DraftAce would have picked: Suh

3. Bucs – Gerald McCoy – DT – Oklahoma
Once again, no surprise here. The Bucs wanted to find the next Warren Sapp and they may have found him. McCoy’s size and athleticism makes him a terror on the interior defensive line. He’ll be a starter and a difference maker from day one.
Grade: A+
DraftAce would have picked: McCoy

4. Redskins – Trent Williams – OT – Oklahoma
In recent days it had become clear that the Redskins were strongly considering Williams, but I was still mildly surprised when they made the pick. His athleticism fits their zone-blocking scheme perfectly, but he simply isn’t as good as Russell Okung. He has only one year of experience at left tackle and it was a very mediocre year at that. He may develop into a solid lineman, but this isn’t the guy you want protecting Donovan McNabb in 2010.
Grade: C
DraftAce would have picked: Russell Okung

5. Chiefs – Eric Berry – S – Tennessee
I was fairly surprised by this selection simply because it violates Scott Pioli’s draft philosophy of always favoring the guys who play in the trenches. But Berry has the elite skills necessary to make him difference maker from the safety position.
Grade: A
DraftAce would have picked: Russell Okung

6. Seahawks – Russell Okung – OT – Oklahoma State
The Seahawks sure lucked into this one. I thought they were going to get stuck with Trent Williams, but thanks to the Redskins, they’re able to land the best tackle in the draft. He’ll step in a left tackle immediately and anchor the Seahawks line for the next decade.
Grade: A+
DraftAce would have picked: Okung

7. Browns – Joe Haden – CB – Florida
With Eric Berry off the board, there really wasn’t anything the Browns could do to earn a high grade here. Their best move would have been to trade down, but even staying put I think there were better players available. If they wanted to address the secondary, Earl Thomas would have been a better fit. With the recent addition of Sheldon Brown, cornerback may actually be one of their few positions that isn’t a need. It wasn’t a huge reach, but it just didn’t fill a need for a team that has numerous glaring holes.
Grade: B-
DraftAce would have picked: Earl Thomas

8. Raiders – Rolando McClain – LB – Alabama
This was the most shocking pick the Raiders have made in years simply because it may have actually been the right decision. The Raiders didn’t have a glaring need for an inside linebacker, but McClain was arguably the best player on the board. Unlike in year’s past when I’ve been highly critical of Al Davis on draft day, I have no complaints about this pick.
Grade: A
´╗┐DraftAce would have picked: Rolando McClain

9. Bills – C.J. Spiller – RB – Clemson
I guess this is what you get for hiring a 70-year-old first-time GM. I didn’t give Spiller a 1st-round grade based on the fact that I believe he’s too small to be an elite running back. Chris Johnson is the exception to the rule, and I don’t believe Spiller is as explosive or powerful as Johnson. On top of that, the Bills don’t even have a need for a running back. In fact, that may be the one position where they’re 100% set. If they turn around and trade Marshawn Lynch the pick will look more reasonable, but for now, it looks downright insane.
Grade: D
DraftAce would have picked: Dan Williams

10. Jaguars – Tyson Alualu – DT – California
Last year I said that Darrius Heyward-Bey was the worst 1st-round pick I had ever seen. Well, the Jaguars topped it. Alualu is a fringe 1st-round prospect who had no business being selected in the top 10. If they felt that they absolutely had to have Alualu, they easily could have traded back 10 spots and been guaranteed that he would be on the board.
Grade: F
DraftAce would have picked: Derrick Morgan

11. 49ers – Anthony Davis – OT – Rutgers
In my opinion this was a significant reach. Davis is very raw and will struggle in the NFL as a rookie. Fortunately he can be placed at right tackle in San Francisco, assuming they keep Joe Staley on the left side. That will lessen his negative impact as a rookie. However, if they were going after a right tackle, Bryan Bulaga is a significantly better option. Additionally, Earl Thomas was still on the board and would have filled an obvious hole.
Grade: C
DraftAce would have picked: Bryan Bulaga

12. Chargers – Ryan Mathews – RB – Fresno State
Trading up was a necessary move for the Chargers. They’re a Super Bowl contender and simply couldn’t afford to enter the 2010 season with the diminutive Darren Sproles as their starting running back. Mathews will be the starter from day one.
Grade: A+
DraftAce would have picked: Mathews

13. Eagles – Brandon Graham – DE – Michigan
When the Eagles traded up I was certain they would select Earl Thomas. While the selection of Graham came as a surprise, it’s a great move. He can be an elite pass rusher in Philly starting opposite Trent Cole. He will definitely be a candidate for rookie of the year in 2010.
Grade: A
DraftAce would have picked: Graham

14. Seahawks – Earl Thomas – S – Texas
The Seahawks are the biggest winners in the 1st round. Both of their picks were absolute slam dunks. Thomas had great value at No. 14 and fills an obvious need. He will be a difference-making playmaker in their secondary from day one.
Grade: A+
DraftAce would have picked: Thomas

15. Giants – Jason Pierre-Paul – DE – South Florida
Personally, I wouldn’t have touched Pierre-Paul in the 1st round. A player with seven career starts at the D-I level has no business coming off the board in the top 15. There’s speculation that the Giants may trade Osi Umenyiora, but Pierre-Paul is too raw to be handed a starting job. There’s simply no excuse for not taking Derrick Morgan with this selection.
Grade: D
DraftAce would have picked: Derrick Morgan

16. Titans – Derrick Morgan – DE – Georgia Tech
The Titans took advantage of the Giants stupidity. They had a glaring need for a defensive end and grabbed the top one on most boards. I’m stunned that Morgan ended up as the third defensive end off the board, but Titans fans should be very pleased. He’s a perfect Jeff Fisher player – a hard worker and well-rounded.
Grade: A+
DraftAce would have picked: Morgan

17. 49ers – Mike Iupati – OG – Idaho
I like the selection of Iupati more than the selection of Davis. However, grabbing two offensive linemen in the 1st round is like putting all your eggs in one basket. If they don’t work out immediately, the 49ers decision makers will be in hot water. The fact that Jimmy Clausen was still on the board also raises some concern. They’re putting their faith in Alex Smith, which is a bold decision. If Clausen turns out to be better than Smith, the 49ers will never live it down.
Grade: A-
DraftAce would have picked: Jimmy Clausen

18. Steelers – Maurkice Pouncey – C – Florida
The Steelers struggled with their identity last season and the issues stemmed from the offensive line woes. They started to become a power-running team, but lacked the interior line dominance necessary for that brand of football. Pouncey will probably shift over to guard and start immediately. While I agree with the position that was addressed, I would have taken Bryan Bulaga. Either Max Starks or Willie Colon could have shifted inside to guard to make room for him a tackle.
Grade: A
DraftAce would have picked: Bryan Bulaga

19. Falcons – Sean Weatherspoon – LB – Missouri
This is a perfect fit for the Falcons. They probably would have liked to see Derrick Morgan continue to fall, but Weatherspoon is a nice consolation prize. He’ll start at strong-side linebacker immediately, providing an upgrade over Stephen Nicholas.
Grade: A
DraftAce would have picked: Sean Weatherspoon

20. Texans – Kareem Jackson – CB – Alabama
With Spiller and Mathews off the board, the obvious selection was cornerback. However, this was a definite reach. Jackson plays a physical style of football, but he’s slightly undersized. He may struggled adjusting to the NFL game when he’s matched up with bigger, stronger receivers. Defensive tackle was also a need, and Dan Williams was on the board. I had him graded as a top-10 pick, making him a no-brainer for the Texans.
Grade: C
DraftAce would have picked: Dan Williams

21. Bengals – Jermaine Gresham – TE – Oklahoma
Finally a tight end for the Bengals! They’ve needed to make this pick for years. Gresham is an elite talent, but there have to be some concerns about the fact that he hasn’t played since 2008. If they wanted a playmaker, they should have taken Dez Bryant. Surely, they weren’t scared away by Bryant’s character concerns.
Grade: A-
DraftAce would have picked: Dez Bryant

22. Broncos – Demaryius Thomas – WR – Georgia Tech
I agree with the position, just not the player. Thomas is very talented, but he’s extremely raw. Coming from Paul Johnson’s triple-option offense, he’ll need to learn a whole new ballgame in the NFL. There’s no guarantee that he’ll make any impact whatsoever in the 2010. With Dez Bryant on the board, this was a baffling pick.
Grade: C
DraftAce would have picked: Dez Bryant

23. Packers – Bryan Bulaga – OT – Iowa
Mark Tauscher and Chad Clifton both return but they’re getting up there in age, making tackle a need in Green Bay. Bulaga may actually be asked to play guard early in his career before moving back out to talker. He was arguably the best available player and fills an area of need.
Grade: A
DraftAce would have picked: Bryan Bulaga

24. Cowboys – Dez Bryant – WR – Oklahoma State
Jerry Jones loves giving his quarterback weapons to play with, doesn’t he? There are legitimate concerns about Bryant’s maturity level, but the Cowboys obviously felt he was worth the risk at No. 24. And I couldn’t agree more. He is a top-10 talent and could make the Cowboys offense nearly unstoppable in 2010.
Grade: A+
DraftAce would have picked: Bryant

25. Broncos – Tim Tebow – QB – Florida
Remember when I said Tyson Alualu was the worst 1st-round pick I had ever seen? Scratch that. I had Tebow graded as a 4th-round selection. I can certainly understand the attraction to him. His athleticism and his work ethic makes coaches believe that they can develop him into a star. But I just don’t see it happening. 1st-round quarterbacks are expected to start by the start of their 2nd-year in the league at the latest. I don’t see how Tebow can possibly be ready to make an impact. This could be an embarrassing situation for both Tebow and Josh McDaniels.
Grade: F
DraftAce would have picked: Dan Williams

26. Cardinals – Dan Williams – DT – Tennessee
In terms of value, this was the best pick of the 1st round. Williams is a legitimate top-10 talent and a perfect fit at nose tackle in the Cardinals 3-4 defense. The Cards have done a phenomenal job drafting over the past 3-5 years and it continues with this selection. He’ll be a difference maker from day one.
Grade: A+
DraftAce would have picked: Williams

27. Patriots – Devin McCourty – CB – Rutgers
This is a solid pick, but not a very exciting one. For the first time in awhile the Patriots had a number of holes to fill. McCourty fills one of them, but I think there was better value at linebacker, which was also a need. Additionally, I had Kyle Wilson rated ahead of McCourty. This isn’t a bad pick, just not the best option they had.
Grade: B
DraftAce would have picked: Jerry Hughes

28. Dolphins – Jared Odrick – DT – Penn State
Of course Parcells was going to add to his defensive front seven. Odrick is a nice pick who definitely had value, but he doesn’t fill a glaring hole. The ‘Phins really could have used an outside linebacker to start opposite Cameron Wake, and there were a few options on the board.
Grade: B
DraftAce would have picked: Jerry Hughes

29. Jets – Kyle Wilson – CB – Boise State
The Jets made so many moves this offseason that they entered the draft without any obvious needs. They certainly don’t need a cornerback, but Rex Ryan believes you can never have too many. The only problem with the selection is that they already have a 24-year old and a 26-year old in the starting lineup, both of whom are former Pro Bowlers. Wilson may not see much playing time for awhile.
Grade: B+
DraftAce would have picked: Jerry Hughes

30. Lions – Jahvid Best – RB – California
Since he hit a home run with his 1st pick, Martin Mayhew obviously felt he needed to do something to screw up his draft before the day was over. Best is a playmaker, there’s no denying that, but he isn’t an every down back. He’s simply too small. The last time he was on the field he nearly got himself killed. A player with that size who already has a serious concussion in his past is far too risky to spend a 1st-round pick on.
Grade: D
DraftAce would have picked: Everson Griffen

31. Colts – Jerry Hughes – DE – TCU
I was fairly surprised that this wasn’t an offensive lineman. That was clearly the Colts biggest weakness in the Super Bowl and they’ve done nothing to fix it. While I’m a huge fan of Hughes, I don’t see him making an immediate impact in Indy. I’m actually curious to see if they move him to strong-side linebacker. If they do, the pick makes a little more sense. But it still wasn’t their best option.
Grade: B
DraftAce would have picked: Charles Brown

32. Saints – Patrick Robinson – CB – Florida State
The Saints obviously have some issues with depth at cornerback, but they didn’t need to address it in the 1st round. Malcolm Jenkins and Tracy Porter are two young, quality starters who are still improving. One possibility, however, is that Jenkins will move to free safety to replace Darren Sharper. Even if that happens, this was a reach. The Saints have glaring holes at both outside linebacker positions and a number of players were on the board who could have stepped in.
Grade: C
DraftAce would have picked: Sergio Kindle

Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in 2010 NFL Draft 4 Comments

About the author

Ryan McCrystal

Ryan launched DraftAce in 2004. His Top 100 board is currently ranked 1st out of 20 publications in The Huddle Report's five-year averages. His mock draft is ranked 10th out of 32 competitors.You can also find Ryan's weekly Heisman Predictor series on ESPN Insider every fall.