NFL Draft 2018: NFC breakdown and grades

It’s never too soon for RealSport to offer some analysis of each NFC team’s performance.

(Photo Credit: USA Today via Reuters/Matthew Emmons)

Here we go with the NFC:

Arizona Cardinals
Most Intriguing Selection: 
Christian Kirk, WR, Texas A&M (Round 2, 47th overall)
Breakdown: Both first-round pick Josh Rosen and Kirk believe they should have been drafted higher so they’ll be out to prove something. Whether those attitudes will distract from quickly working their way onto the field remains to be seen. Offensive lineman Mason Cole is a starter right now and FCS running back Chase Edmonds should provide some nice depth.
Grade: B

Atlanta Falcons
Most Intriguing Selection: 
Deadrin Senat, DT South Florida (Round 3, 90th overall)
Breakdown: Julio Jones gets a fellow Crimson Tide receiver to run with in Calvin Ridley. Isaiah Oliver offers some immediate depth at cornerback and the 314-pound Senat has the potential to be the best of Atlanta’s draft class. Running back Ito Smith from Southern Miss is a name to remember.
Grade: B-

Carolina Panthers
Most Intriguing Selection: 
Donte Jackson, CB, LSU (Round 2, 55th overall)
Breakdown: Cam Newton gets a speed receiver in first-rounder D.J. Moore and Jackson is the fastest player in the draft to help upgrade the secondary. Third-rounder Rashaan Gaulden also could start in the secondary by the end of the season.
Grade: B

Chicago Bears
Most Intriguing Selection: 
Anthony Miller, WR, Memphis (Round 2, 51st overall)
Breakdown: Chicago filled a need with Butkus Award winner Roquan Smith at linebacker in the first round and got an immediate starter in center James Daniels, who can also play guard. Miller, however, might be the gem of Chicago’s draft after recording 191 receptions, 2,896 yards and 32 touchdowns the past two seasons for Memphis.
Grade: A-

(Photo Credit: USA Today via Reuters/Matthew Emmons)

Dallas Cowboys
Most Intriguing Selection: Connor Williams, OL, Texas (Round 2, 50th overall)
Breakdown: The Cowboys couldn’t be happier to have nabbed Boise State linebacker Leighton Vander Esch with the 19th pick and got who some felt was a first-rounder in Williams. The question with Williams is where exactly he will play. Watch out for receiver Michael Gallup, who could well start in Week 1.
Grade: B-

Detroit Lions
Most Intriguing Selection:
Kerryon Johnson, RB, Auburn (Round 2, 43rd overall)
Breakdown: Detroit went with versatile lineman Frank Ragnow, who will play center, in the first round. But it’s Johnson (1,391 yards and 18 touchdowns in 2017) who might give the Lions the consistent runner they desire after struggling in that area in recent years.
Grade: B

Green Bay Packers
Most Intriguing Selection: 
Josh Jackson, CB, Iowa (Round 2, 45th overall)
Breakdown: A defense that has struggled against the pass of late took a pair of corners with their first two picks (Jaire Alexander and Jackson). Jackson had first-round caliber talent and might be the better of the pair after recording eight interceptions in 2018. The Packers might have taken the draft’s best punter in Alabama’s JK Scott.
Grade: B+

Los Angeles Rams
Most Intriguing Selection:
John Kelly, RB, Tennessee (Round 6, 176th overall)
Breakdown: The Rams, who did most of their offseason upgrading through trades and free agency, didn’t make their first pick until the third round where tackle Joseph Noteboom falls under the best player available category. Kelly might be the best of their class as a compliment to Todd Gurley after he ran for nine touchdowns and caught 37 passes last season.
Grade: C

Minnesota Vikings
Most Intriguing Selection: 
Brian O’Neill, OT, Pittsburgh (Round 2, 62nd overall)
Breakdown: Cornerback Mike Hughes was a great value pick with the 30th overall selection, but O’Neill is the guy who should anchor the line for years to come. Grabbing Ohio State defensive lineman Jalyn Holmes in the fourth round should pay off since he’s capable of playing inside or out.
Grade: B

New Orleans Saints
Most Intriguing Selection: 
Tre’Quan Smith, WR, Central Florida (Round 3, 91st overall)
Breakdown: Defensive end Marcus Davenport with the 14th overall pick has plenty of upside, but Smith is the guy who can make an impact immediately after recording 59 receptions, 1,171 yards and 13 touchdowns last season. Plus, he has Drew Brees throwing him the ball.
Grade: B

New York Giants
Most Intriguing Selection:
B.J. Hill, DT, North Carolina State (Round 3, 69th overall)
Breakdown: Did the Giants reach for Saquon Barkley with the second overall pick? Maybe, but their running game was horrid. Second-round guard Will Hernandez is an immediate starter and Hill has the athleticism up front to be a Pro Bowler. The Giants also might have chosen their quarterback of the future in Kyle Lauletta in the fourth round.
Grade: B

Philadelphia Eagles
Most Intriguing Selection: 
Dallas Goedert, TE, South Dakota State (Round 2, 49th overall)
Breakdown: For a time, Goedert was considered the best tight end in the draft and has the game to succeed in this system. Cornerback Avonte Maddox in the fourth round is a hard-as-nails prospect who should add even more swagger to one of the league’s best secondaries. Fellow fourth-rounder Josh Sweat is a defensive end with freakish talent who should contribute right away.
Grade: B+

San Francisco 49ers
Most Intriguing Selection: 
Dante Pettis, WR, Washington (Round 2, 44th overall)
Breakdown: Tackle Mike McGlinchey should be the heir to Joe Staley’s throne and was a solid first-round choice. Pettis could blossom into a better version of Tyreek Hill and should immediately make a difference in San Francisco’s return game. The 49ers’ next six picks addressed defensive needs, with three in the secondary.
Grade: B-

Seattle Seahawks
Most Intriguing Selection: 
Rashaad Penny, RB, San Diego State (Round 1, 27th overall)
Breakdown: Some feel there were better running back options than Penny at that spot, but he gained 2,248 yards and rushed for 23 touchdowns in 2017. Fifth-round, one-handed linebacker Shaquem Griffin is a feel-good story who just might become a starter as could fellow fifth-round safety Tre Flowers.
Grade: C+

Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Most Intriguing Selection: 
Ronald Jones II, RB, USC (Round 2, 38th overall)
Breakdown: Tampa went defense with three of its first four picks beginning with 350-pounder Vita Vea as the 12th overall choice. Jones, though, might end up being the key to the Bucs’ draft after rushing for 1,550 yards last season. He has only Jacquizz Rodgers to worry about.
Grade: B

Washington Redskins
Most Intriguing Selection: 
Derrius Guice, RB, LSU (Round 2, 59th overall)
Breakdown: Guice rounds out the list of LSU draftees who have the talent to succeed but the question marks to not. Guice’s character issues are naturally a concern, but he rushed for 2,638 yards and 26 touchdowns the last two seasons and enters as the best running back on the Redskins’ roster. First-round defensive end Da’Ron Payne from Alabama provides obvious help up front.
Grade: C

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