2022 NFL Draft 1st Round Breakdown

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Matthew Medina

The first round of the NFL Draft saw the first 5 picks be defensive players.

The 2022 NFL Draft kicked off in Las Vegas Thursday night and it was full of surprises. Blockbuster trades for draft picks and surprise top ten picks gave many teams opportunities to take advantage of their draft capital. Here is everything you need to know about the 2022 NFL Draft and the grades of each team. 

 

Jacksonville Jaguars – A-

Pick 1: Georgia DE Travon Walker

Pick 27: Utah ILB Devin Lloyd

Before the college season, Travon Walker was projected to go in the 20s. But leading up to the draft, that would change. There was never a real clear number one sure fire pick, but most teams believe he has the most potential to be the best player. Jacksonville also picked up an inside linebacker named Devin Lloyd who can be an upgrade for the secondary. 

 

Detroit Lions – A

Pick 2: Michigan DE Aidan Hutchinson

Pick 12: Alabama WR Jameson Williams 

The Detroit Lions had the pick in as soon as the Jaguars’ pick was announced. Finishing 2nd in the Heisman voting, Hutchinson was expected to land first or second overall. The Lions continue a strong rebuild by adding yet another elite receiver to their roster, but will have to wait to start an injured Jameson Williams.  

 

Houston Texans – B

Pick 3: LSU CB Derek Stingley 

Pick 15: Texas A&M OG Kenyon Green 

One of the biggest surprises in the draft, CB Derek Stingley was taken 3rd overall by the Houston Texans. 2 years ago, Derek Stingley was talked about as a potential number one pick, and now he has a chance to be one of the best corners in the league. His talent is second to none, but he hasn’t been able to show it as much. Houston then took the best guard in the draft named Kenyon Green from Texas A&M. 

 

New York Jets – A+

Pick 4: Georgia CB Sauce Gardner

Pick 10: Ohio State WR Garrett Wilson 

And Pick 26: Florida St. DE Jermaine Johnson II 

Best defensive player last year in college, “Sauce” Gardner is the playmaker New York needs on the defensive side of the ball after allowing the third worst completion percentage in the league. Shortly after, the Jets added an electric wide receiver from Ohio State and an elite defensive end from Florida State. Both players should bring excitement for New York Jets fans for the near future. This team can be sneaky good. 

 

New York Giants – A+

Pick 5: Oregon DE Kayvon Thibodeaux

Pick 7: Alabama OT Evan Neal 

Kayvon Thibodeaux is drafted to be a day one starter, and rightfully so. His explosiveness off the edge will give the Giants much needed help on defense. Adding OT Evan Neal ends the need of a right tackle in the front line for Daniel Jones and company. 

 

Carolina Panthers – A

Pick 6: NC State OT Ikem Ekwonu

Ranked No.1 overall in his respective position, Ekwonu is an aggressive blocker that the Panthers need to have for this run heavy offense in Carolina. He solidifies this offensive line that desperately needs it. 

 

Atlanta Falcons – A

Pick 8: USC WR Drake London

At 6’-5” and 210 pounds, he was a dual threat athlete in football and basketball at USC. Now he will be one of the main targets for Marcus Mariota in Atlanta for 2022. Projected to be the No.1 wide receiver on the team, he will be used heavily in scoring opportunities and big moments. 

 

Seattle Seahawks – A

Pick 9: Miss. State OT Charles Cross

Rumors of drafting a quarterback soon were shut down after the Seahawks bulked up their offensive line with Miss. State OT Charles Cross. Although he specializes in pass protection, his run block abilities will need some work due to Seattle’s love for running the ball. Overall, great pick for a team that desperately needed a new tackle. 

 

New Orleans Saints – B

Pick 11: Ohio State WR Chris Olave

Pick 19: Northern Iowa OT Trevor Penning

The Saints traded up for WR Chris Olave to help assist Micheal Thomas on the field. His explosiveness off the line gives him an advantage every wide receiver yearns for; separation. Northern Iowa’s Trevor Penning adds much needed pass protection for Jamis Wisnton, who is coming off a torn ACL injury. The developing tackle should keep Winston safe in the backfield when he is in his prime. 

 

Philadelphia Eagles – B

Pick 13: Georgia DT Jordan Davis

Easily the biggest player in this draft, Jordan Davis should give the Eagles an advantage in the trenches with his size and athleticism. Dominant as a Georgia Bulldog, his potential and upside is huge for Philadelphia due to his surprising speed and strength off the line. 

 

Baltimore Ravens – A

Pick 14: Notre Dame S Kyle Hamilton

Pick 25: Iowa C Tyler Linderbaum 

After the draft combine, Kyle Hamilton’s stock dropped significantly. Was once seen as a surefire top 5 pick turned into a 14th overall pick to the Baltimore Ravens. Hamilton is still a steal for Baltimore because he can play anywhere in the backfield. A well versatile athlete is always a good sign for a defense in the NFL. The Ravens second first round pick went to C Tyler Linderbaum, who showed complete dominance in his position at the University of Iowa. 

 

Washington Commanders – C+

Pick 16: Penn State WR Jahan Dotson 

With their first pick with their new name, the Commanders reached. Jahan Dotson was projected to be a mid 2nd round pick, not a mid 1st round pick. He certainly has talent, but seems to be one-dimensional as a vertical threat. 

 

Los Angeles Chargers – A-

Pick 17: Boston College OG Zion Johnson

The Chargers got a guy that didn’t allow a single pressure, let alone a sack. He has had experience playing offensive tackle and center, so he’s versatile. The question is how will he play against NFL competition. 

 

Tennessee Titans – A

Pick 18: Arkansas WR Treylon Burks

The Titans traded star WR AJ Brown for someone who could potentially replace him. Another good thing is that he is significantly cheaper than AJ Brown who recently signed a 100 million dollar contract with Philadelphia. Treylon Burks looks to be a dual threat as a receiver and running back. 

 

Pittsburgh Steelers – A

Pick 20: Pitt QB Kenny Pickett

With their pick, the Steelers get their QB of the future. As a heisman finalist, he was the only QB selected. He doesn’t need to start right away as he could sit behind QB Mitch Trubisky and develop. 

 

Kansas City Chiefs – B+

Pick 21: Washington CB Trent McDuffie

Pick 30: Purdue DE George Karlaftis

The Chiefs traded up to pick McDuffie to fill a need in the secondary. The problem with this pick is that they probably didn’t need to make this trade. The Chiefs got excellent value with Karlaftis at 30. He projects to be a good pass rusher in a division with good passers. 

 

Green Bay Packers – A-

Pick 22: Georgia LB Quay Walker 

Pick 28: Georgia DT Devonte Wyatt

There is a 20 year streak that Packers have with no WRs taken in the first round. All top WR prospects were already taken, so they decided to go defense. And they selected two guys from Georgia University who recently won the National Championship in college football. Hopefully, they can bring that championship aura to Green Bay. 

 

Buffalo Bills – B

Pick 23: Florida CB Kaiir Elam

The Bills addressed a significant need with Kaiir Elam. The Bills got burned by Kansas City’s receivers in the playoffs and Elam will help in the secondary. He will pair nicely with other CB Tre’Davious White. 

 

Dallas Cowboys – B+

Pick 24: Tulsa OT Tyler Smith

The Cowboys got a really talented player to help in their offensive line with Tyler Smith. He projects to be a good player. Smith might be a better talent at OG as he doesn’t have the tools to be a good pass protector. He still will be a really good OG though.

 

New England Patriots – B

Pick 29: Chattanooga OG Cole Strange 

Typical Patriots pick. They selected a guy who was nowhere near projected in the 1st round, but they got a guy who projects as a really good talent. In fact, out of all offensive guards since 1987, he ranks 7th in relative athletic score. 

 

Cincinnati Bengals – A

Pick 31: Michigan S Daxton Hill

The Bengals fresh off a Super Bowl appearance have the talent to go there again. The biggest problem in terms of defense was their secondary. He also has the ability to play CB. Daxton Hill can easily become the biggest steal of the 1st round. 

 

Minnesota Vikings – B

Pick 32: Georgia S Lewis Cine 

With this pick, it marks the most defensive players drafted in the 1st round from the same college with 5. Lewis Cine gives the Vikings much needed help in secondary.