Senior NFL Columnist

Grades: 2014 NFL Draft Round 1

  • senior writer Pete Prisco analyzes each pick from Round 1 of the 2014 NFL Draft, grading each team on its draft-night selections.

Grades: Round 1Round 2Round 3Round 4Round 5Round 6Round 7

1ATexans select: Jadeveon Clowney, DE, South Carolina

I love this pick. He is the draft's best player. I would have traded down, but he will be a star.

2B+Rams select: Greg Robinson, OT, Auburn

An easy pick. They had to take Robinson. He will play guard and then move to left tackle.

3A+Jaguars select: Blake Bortles, QB, UCF

Love this pick. I knew they loved Bortles and they had to get a quarterback. He's the right guy.

4C-Bills select: Sammy Watkins, WR, Clemson

They need an explosive playmaker, and I like Watkins. But moving up can be risky. Does he put them over the top? They gave up too much.

5B+Raiders select: Khalil Mack, OLB, Buffalo

This is a no-brainer for the Raiders. He is an elite pass rusher and they need one in the worst way.

6A-Falcons select: Jake Matthews, OT, Texas A&M

They have their left tackle and got what some think is the safest player in the draft. Good pick.

7B+Buccaneers select: Mike Evans, WR, Texas A&M

This is who they wanted. They were scared he wouldn't be there. They had to get a playmaker opposite Vincent Jackson.

8CBrowns select: Justin Gilbert, CB, Oklahoma State

I liked two other corners better, but they need corner help. Why not a QB?

9BVikings select: Anthony Barr, OLB, UCLA

I like this pick for a team that needed to get faster at linebacker. He will amp up the blitz package.

10C-Lions select: Eric Ebron, TE, North Carolina

This kid has a ton of talent, but is he really a need? They had other more pressing needs.

11CTitans select: Taylor Lewan, OT, Michigan

I don't get this pick after signing Michael Oher. Is this the end for Michael Roos? They had other needs.

12B+Giants select: Odell Beckham Jr., WR, LSU

I might be in the minority on this pick, but I like it. He will be better than Mike Evans. They need a receiver to go with Victor Cruz.

13ARams select: Aaron Donald, DT, Pittsburgh

What a great pick from the Rams. They get one of the best defensive players in the draft at this spot.

14ABears select: Kyle Fuller, CB, Virginia Tech

I love this pick. Fuller is the top corner in my mind and they need corners in a division with two good passers.

15B+Steelers select: Ryan Shazier, OLB, Ohio State

This is a speed pick for a team that needs it on defense. I like the player, but can he hold up inside?

16B+Cowboys select: Zack Martin, OG, Notre Dame

This is a good pick for a team that needed line help. They didn't get caught up in the hype. The line will be damn good.

17BRavens select: C.J. Mosley, ILB, Alabama

They need help next to Daryl Smith, and he isn't a kid anymore. It's a good, solid pick.

18B-Jets select: Calvin Pryor, FS, Louisville

They had to get safety help, so this makes sense. He is a thumper in the run game, which will help.

19BDolphins select: Jawuan James, OT, Tennessee

They had to get a tackle, and he's played at a high level in a good league. Good pick.

20B+Saints select: Brandin Cooks, WR, Oregon State

They had to get faster on offense, and he does that for them. I like the move to get him.

21APackers select: Hasean Clinton-Dix, FS, Alabama

This is a great pick. They needed range in the secondary and they now have it. Love it.

22ABrowns select: Johnny Manziel, QB, Texas A&M

This is a smart move by the Browns. They had to get a quarterback. Great move.

23C-Chiefs select: Dee Ford, DE, Auburn

Don't they have Justin Houston and Tamba Hali? They had other needs. Strange pick.

24B+Bengals select: Darqueze Dennard, CB, Michigan State

The Bengals had to get a corner with age creeping in, so it makes sense. I might have gone Bradley Roby, but it's close.

25B+Chargers select: Jason Verrett, CB, TCU

If he was an inch or two taller, he would have gone higher. He fills a big need. Good pick.

26BEagles select: Marcus Smith, DE, Louisville

The Eagles need a young pass rusher, and he can provide that. He's athletic and fits their scheme. I get it.

27BCardinals select: Deone Bucannon, SS, Washington State

They had to get a safety to upgrade the back end. He's a good football player who will hit you. I like Jimmie Ward more, but that's nitpicking.

28CPanthers select: Kelvin Benjamin, WR, Florida State

They had to get a receiver, but I don't like this pick. He is second-round talent in my book. Why not Marqise Lee?

29APatriots select: Dominique Easley, DT, Florida

This is a terrific pick. He would have been a top-10 pick if not for injuries to both knees. He will be a star -- if healthy.

30B49ers select: Jimmie Ward, SS, Northern Illinois

He is a heck of a football player, but with Antoine Bethea and Eric Reid was that really a need?

31B+Broncos select: Bradley Roby, CB, Ohio State

Great pick. I thought he was one of the top two cornerbacks in the draft. And he fills an immediate need.

32B-Vikings select: Teddy Bridgewater, QB, Louisville

I like the Vikings going up to get Bridgewater. It makes sense when you don't have a quarterback.

Pete Prisco has covered the NFL for three decades, including working as a beat reporter in Jacksonville for the Jaguars. He hosted his own radio show for seven years, and is the self-anointed star of CBS Sports' show, Eye on Football. When he's not watching game tape, you can find Pete on Twitter or dreaming of an Arizona State national title in football.

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