2009 NFL Draft Grades: NFC Conference

Last Updated: April 27th, 2009 by Travis Edwards (Bankroll Sports Contributor)

The 2009 NFL Draft turned out to be an exciting and unpredictable event as usual. The staff here at bankrollsports.com did a pretty good job with our prop bet picks so hopefully that added some extra money to your wallet. If you are wondering how your favorite team did in the draft, don’t worry we have a full review and grade for every team. For many teams, their selections could make immediate impacts on the field next season while other teams selections may need some time before they make a difference on Sunday. Check out the teams that did well and the teams that could have managed their selections better in our NFC Draft Grades. Also, be sure to check back to see how the AFC faired in tomorrow’s report.

Arizona Cardinals

The Cardinals got a big boost when they were able to snatch Chris “Beanie” Wells at the end of the first round. Wells give speed and explosive to the back field was has been missing in action. Imagine Arizona having a running game to go with their air attack. Wells ability for an immediate impact will be sought after, but that could be asking a bit much. LB Cody Johnson and safety Rashad Johnson should fill some needs on defense, but both players will need time to develop. Overall NFL Draft Grade: B

Atlanta Falcons

I believe it is safe to say that Atlanta was focused on filling the need on the defensive side of the ball. The Falcons drafted 6 out of 7 defensive players over the weekend. Peria Jerry was selected 24th at the defensive tackle position. While we do not see most of these guys coming in to make immediate impacts, the defense could become a force in a few years. Overall NFL Draft Grade: B-

Carolina Panthers

The Panthers went well out of their way to secure selecting defensive end Everette Brown. Brown was listed as high as a top 5 pick on a few draft boards before fading in the final weeks. With questions looming around Julius Pepper’s future at Carolina, the Brown move makes a lot of sense to keep the defensive effective as they need to be. Sherrod Martin and Captain Munnerlyn both were chosen at the safety positions. Munnerlyn was a last round sleeper and Martin could get playing time early.  Overall NFL Draft Grade: B-

Chicago Bears

Well the Bears biggest move over the off-season was their trade to get Jay Cutler, but they still have a lot of concerns. The Bears got Juaquin Iglesias with the 2nd pick in the draft. The former Oklahoma wide out was a step slower than most in the combines and I believe he could be a bust. The bottom line is we do not see things taking any dramatic turns here. Overall NFL Draft Grade: C

Dallas Cowboys

The Cowboys gave up some early round picks in other transactions, but picked up a lot of late round picks that should add depth to the lineup. Some experts say they did not feel their need in the secondary, but I believe Michael Hamlin out of Clemson is a considerable sleeper. LB Jason Williams could see some playing time considering how inconsistent the Cowboys have been in the middle of the field. Overall NFL Draft Grade: B-

Detroit Lions

It definitely helps when you have the overall number 1 pick in the draft and then you also have another late first pick to back that up. Matthew Stafford has all the ingredients to be a long term quarterback and late first round selection Brandon Pettigrew is an excellent addition. Pettigrew does everything well from blocking to catching passes. Detroit definitely had needs all over the field, but these two picks could really blossom into something nice. Overall NFL Draft Grade: A-

Green Bay Packers

The Packers possibly the best job of any team over the weekend. Grabbing DT B.J Raji was a perfect solution to the new defense. Clay Matthews will add more support in the 4 linebacker figuration. Offensive tackles T.J Lang and Jamon Meredith should come in and give Green Bay some much needed depth along the front line. Looking back no other team fit their specific needs as well as the Packers. Overall NFL Draft Grade: A

Minnesota Vikings

This could be one of the disappointment classes for the Vikings. Actually it could go either way as they have some talented players, but a lot of question marks surrounding them. Percy Harvin was tremendous at the college level, but size could play a factor. However, Harvin could make it the size factor with blazing speed all depending on how he fits into Minnesota’s offense. Jasper Brinkley had big junior season at South Carolina, but suffered a knee injury and red shirted his true senior year. Brinkley looked a step slower in all directions after the injury and that could throw up some red flags for the long haul. Overall Draft Grade: C plus

New Orleans Saints

The Saints did a fairly solid job over the off-season. Selecting Malcom Jenkins at the number 14 overall selection was a strong pick considering Jenkins could become a legitimate defensive force and quickly. Jenkins was the only pick in the first 3 rounds considering other transactions that acquired Jonathon Vilma and Jeremy Shockey. Chip Vaughn should also give defensive support in the distant future as well which was a big need for New Orleans after a dreadful secondary last season. Overall NFL Draft Grade: B-

New York Giants

Hakeem Nicks was a gamble selection in the first round, but could be a big time player. William Beatty should have been taken earlier and New York benefited from the offensive tackle being overlooked. WR Rhamses Bardin at one time or another was a sleeper pick on nearly every board and is another big target for Eli Manning. While it’s unfair sometimes to lay an entire class in the hands of one player, this one definitely falls on Nick’s ability to progress into an every down receiver. Overall NFL Draft Grade: B-

Philadelphia Eagles

The Eagles got a few selections that could make immediate impacts while a few others may never see the field. Jeremy Maclin could be a special team’s explosive threat and eventually develop into a big time receiver that possesses a lot of speed. After RB LeSean McCoy and Cornelius Ingram selections, it was a big fall off. However, those 3 guys should make some type of difference. The question is how long will that take? Overall NFL Draft Grade: C+

San Francisco 49ers

San Francisco did not necessarily have a bad class of players, but just wondering if they really addressed the needs. However, Michael Crabtree has the size and hands to make him an exciting offensive threat. Expect to see Crabtree on the field this year and by the 2nd half of the season to become a threat. Many have doubts on Alabama’s Glen Coffee, but he is a solid hard nose runner that should be able to find away to get playing time in the future. Overall NFL Draft Grade: B

Seattle Seahawks

Aaron Curry was listed as high as a possible number one selection and to be honest he may very well be the best all-around player in this year’s class. Curry will be a threat up the middle for some time to come. 2nd round selection Max Unger has a lot of upside. He has great quickness for a center and could be used in a lot of pull down running situations. Expect WR Deon Butler to also find the field before too long as well. The entire group may not be a solid as hoped, but some solid talent nonetheless. Overall NFL Draft Grade: B+

St. Louis Rams

The Rams chose Jason Smith as the top offensive linemen in possibly the most talented class in the history of offensive big men. Smith could be ready to play on Sunday today and do not expect it to take him long to be extremely effective. James Laurinatis is another solid grab in the second round. St. Louis has had some problems with keeping guys on the field for long periods of time. These two selections should put those worries to rest. Overall NFL Draft Grade: B

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

The Buccaneers may get some eventual help from QB Josh Freeman who they selected in the first round. Freeman appears to have what it takes to make the field and be an effective quarterback, but still will need time to learn. DT Roy Miller and DE Kyle Moore should add some depth to the defensive side of the ball. However, the big problem with this class is that there is not one person that is going to come in and make an impact. At best they may have two or 3 guys in a few years to develop into solid players, but again that is only at best. Overall NFL Draft Grade: D

Washington Redskins

Brian Orakpo has the speed and explosiveness that NFL experts were drooling over after the NFL combines. Orakpo definitely has the ability to have a long tenure in the league. Kevin Barnes is a solid cover guy who could also make his way onto the field next season. After these two guys, the Redskins are another team that had a big drop off towards the bottom of the class. Robert Henson was a late selection that could blossom, but there will need to be a lot of work done to change some bad habits. Overall NFL Draft Grade: C+


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Posted in NFL Football - Last Updated on Monday, April 27th, 2009 @ 8:03 pm (EST)
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