2020 NFL Draft Rankings and Ratings, 24-17: Should Detroit have gone for a quarterback?

The NFL Draft has come and gone, and while there will still be flurries of signings of undrafted free agents, it’s time to hand out the grades for who nailed the draft, and who is left with more questions than answers. Here are my official draft rankings and ratings, from worst to first. Here are teams 17-24 in our rankings:

24. Tennessee Titans (43 out of 100)
Best Pick: Isaiah Wilson, OT, Georgia (Round 1, Pick 29)

Worst Pick: Darrynton Evans, RB, Appalachian State (Round 3, Pick 29)

1-Sentence Analysis: Evans is really a casualty here as he’s a decent fit in Tennessee, but it seems to me that the Titans could have done better in addressing major needs at outside linebacker, or adding a weapon at tight end for Ryan Tannehill to utilize – not a bad draft, I’m just left with some questions about Mike Vrabel’s plans. 

23. Seattle Seahawks (47 out of 100)
Best Pick: Darrell Taylor, DE, Tennessee (Round 2, Pick 16)
Worst Pick: Jordyn Brooks, OLB, Texas Tech (Round 1, Pick 27)
1-Sentence Analysis: Maybe the Seahawks know something we don’t, but it seems like they could’ve gotten Brooks in the third round and definitely in the second, but at least their trade up in the second round netted them Taylor, addressing a big-time need at defensive end. 

22. Buffalo Bills (49 out of 100)
Best Pick: AJ Epenesa, DE, Iowa (Round 2, Pick 22)
Worst Pick: Gabriel Davis, WR, UCF (Round 4, Pick 22)

1-Sentence Analysis: A lot of people thought Buffalo had a good draft, but I just feel like after two solid value picks in Epenesa and Zach Moss, it was pretty mediocre for the Bills, who added multiple receivers to an already-strong receiving core, added a quarterback they simply don’t need and likely won’t play, and failed to grab any kind of impact player on defense after Epenesa, particularly at OLB. 

21. New York Giants (49 out of 100)
Best Pick: Xavier McKinney, S, Alabama (Round 2, Pick 4)
Worst Pick: Matt Peart, OT, UConn (Round 3, Pick 35)
1-Sentence Analysis: The Giants were expected to go after an offensive tackle but to go for two in three rounds, and taking Andrew Thomas over Mekhi Becton, Jedrick Wills, and Tristan Wirfs, seemed unnecessary and questionable given their various holes, especially at the linebacker position. 

20. Chicago Bears (50 out of 100)
Best Pick: Cole Kmet, TE, Notre Dame (Round 2, Pick 11)
Worst Pick: Jaylon Johnson, CB, Utah (Round 2, Pick 18)
1-Sentence Analysis: This isn’t a knock against Johnson, who is a second round talent, but it seems like after a great first pick in Kmet, the Bears would have been better to use their second and final pick of the first two days to address a more prominent need than adding cornerback depth.
19. Detroit Lions (50 out of 100)
Best Pick: Jeff Okudah, CB, Ohio State (Round 1, Pick 3)
Worst Pick: Logan Stenberg, OG, Kentucky (Round 4, Pick 15)
1-Sentence Analysis: I thought Detroit was rolling early with Okudah, Swift, and Okwara, and then after grabbing a guard in Jonah Jackson, I thought Detroit made a significant error with their second fourth round pick, where I believe drafting a quarterback, given their clear issues behind Stafford, should have been done, especially with Jacob Eason still on the board, instead of picking up another guard. 18. Los Angeles Rams(51 out of 100)
Best Pick: Terrell Lewis, OLB, Alabama (Round 3, Pick 20)
Worst Pick: Van Jefferson, WR, Florida (Round 2, Pick 25)
1-Sentence Analysis: After no Day 1 picks, the Rams largely did a good job addressing needs with great value picks on day 2, but I didn’t like spending a second round pick on a wide receiver in general, given their two returning 1000-yard receivers and need for improvements at the guard position.
17. Cleveland Browns (51 out of 100)
Best Pick: Jedrick Wills Jr., OT, Alabama (Round 1, Pick 10)
Worst Pick: Harrison Bryant, TE, Florida Atlantic (Round 4, Pick 9)
1-Sentence Analysis: I think Cleveland did a great job getting value with each pick, but I also think they could have done better to address bigger needs, as I think going best available only goes so far when you have playoff aspirations, which the Browns undoubtedly do.

2020 NFL Draft Features: Cole Kmet, CeeDee Lamb, Jonathan Taylor

In another series of articles to pass the time while we wait for sports to restart, we will profile a few players who entered the 2020 draft. Today we covered three higher profile, skill position players, but we will also be focusing on lesser-known names and linemen and defensive prospects as well.

Cole Kmet 

Cole Kmet is a junior tight end from Notre Dame, and he is regarded as the top player at his position. At 6’6 and 262 pounds, he’s a projected 2nd-round pick, ranked 60th overall on CBS’s draft board. In 2019, Kmet was a top target in the passing game for the Irish, catching 43 passes for 515 yards and six touchdowns. He has played in 35 of 39 career games at Notre Dame. 

Teams that figure to be targeting a tight end early in the draft are the New England Patriots and Washington Redskins, while the Indianapolis Colts and Arizona Cardinals may also be in the mix. Another team may try to scoop Kmet up as the best available prospect, but those four teams appear to be the most needy for a tight end as the draft approaches.

Prediction: 2nd Round, Pick 12 – Indianapolis Colts

CeeDee Lamb, Oklahoma

CeeDee Lamb is a junior wide receiver out of Oklahoma and universally considered one of the top two receivers in this year’s draft, along with Jerry Jeudy from Alabama. Lamb measures in at 6 feet, 2 inches, and weighs 198 pounds. An elite receiver all three years with the Sooners, Lamb cemented himself as one of the best in the nation this year, gaining All-American status. He snared 62 receptions for 1,237 yards, leading the FBS in yards per catch, helping lead the Sooners to the College Football Playoff. He is a projected first round pick. 

Lamb would likely go in the Top 10, but there are not many teams drafting early in need of a premier wide receiver. The first true receiver-needy team is picking eleventh, as the Jets will likely be looking to replace Robby Anderson. The Raiders and 49ers, both looking to add a dynamic playmaker, select 12th and 13th, so the likelihood is Lamb will not be on the board past that point. The Broncos (15th) and Eagles (21st) will most likely need to trade up if interested. 

Prediction: Round 1, Pick 11 – New York Jets

Jonathan Taylor, Wisconsin

Jonathan Taylor is a junior running back from Wisconsin, and he will likely be one of the first backs off the board this year. He’s won the Doak Walker award in both his sophomore and junior seasons, and he’s been an All-American in all three seasons. At 5’10 and 226 pounds, Taylor features electric speed that he has put to use as both a runner and receiver on the gridiron, while also running for the Wisconsin track team in the spring of 2019. He averaged 6.2 yards per carry, while also grabbing 26 receptions for 252 yards in the passing game. He’s likely to go in the second round of the draft, especially with a lack of teams making running back their top priority. 

While few teams will consider drafting a running back in the first round, there are a bevy of teams that will be interested in Taylor and others in the middle rounds. The Bills, Buccaneers, Rams, and Dolphins are among those likely hunting for an early-to-mid-round selection at the position. Ultimately, I think the Bucs will be the first one to snag a running back, and the decision likely comes down to Jonathan Taylor or De’Andre Swift from Georgia. I’m saying the Bucs snatch up Taylor to give Tom Brady a dynamic window as they enter their window to win. 

Prediction: 2nd Round, Pick 13 – Tampa Bay Buccaneers