AFC Draft winners and losers


By Bill Smith

NOTE: The NFC winners and losers will be discussed tomorrow.

We all know that it is impossible to really know how a draft of any particular team will work out until 3 to 5 years after the fact. So, ignoring that truth, let’s look at the preliminary score card because everyone else will be doing it.


Jets: New York Jets general manager Mike Tannenbaum should be investigated for theft after he picked the pocket of the Browns to get QB Mark Sanchez (USC). They gave only a first and a second round pick along with 3 journeyman players. If those guys start for the Browns, it is only because they were Jets. Shonn Greene (RB Iowa) was a value in the third round. Grade A+

Chargers: SD got some solid values with the best player in the draft Aaron Curry (ILB Wake Forest) with the 3rd pick, my favorite center Max Unger (OC Oregon) in the second and one of my sleepers, Nick Reed (ILB Oregon) in the 7th. Grade A-

Pats: The Pats got quantity picking 11 players but also got good value with their second picks of Ron Brace (DT Boston College) and Darius Butler (CB Connecticut) to go with their later picks of Brandon Tate (WR North Carolina) in the 3rd round. I really liked Myron Pryor (DT Kentucky) in the 6th round who should develop into a starter. Grade A-

Jags: The Jags got their replacement tackles with their first two picks. Jarett Dillard (WR Rice) is a nice pick (and one of my sleepers) but the 2nd round was a touch early. Rashad Jennings (RB Liberty) was a steal in the 7th round and is this years Brandon Jacobs. Grade B

Bengals: WHAT? That’s right. I’m concerned about Andre Smith (OT Alabama). Odds are good he may eat his way out of the league. But Rey Maualuga (ILB USC), Chase Coffman (TE Missouri) and Jonathan Luigs (OC Arkansas) were excellent values and good players. Michael Johnson (DT Georgia Tech) has top 5 physical ability but needs to have a fire build under his more than ample rear end. The 6th round pick Morgan Trent (CB Michigan) was one of my sleepers and was a steal. Grade B


Texans: Their biggest need was a DT but they went LB with their first 2 picks. They seemed to reach for players a round before they should have been picked. Grade D

Raiders: Al Davis gets an A for the the last half of the draft but the F for the first half outweighs it. He waisted a 2nd round pick on a 6th round CB and got the 3rd best WR with the 7th overall pick. He did take 2 of my sleepers later with Matt Shaughnessy (DE Wisconsin) in the 3rd and Sulak, Stryker (DE Missouri) in the 6th. Grade D

Broncos: They didn’t have a bad draft but lost a franchise QB and did not replace him. Grade D-

Browns: The lack of experience of GM George Kokinis showed in the trades that he made. He failed to get anything close to value in any of the trades down. The Jets were willing to give a 1 in 2010 in addition to the 09 picks but Kokinis took stiffs instead. He also failed to get value in trading down twice. The first deal from 17 to 19 should have brought a 4th round pick but he got a 6th. The trade down from 19 to 21 should have brought a 5th at least but again he got only a 6th. Then they drafted Alex Mack (OC California) with the 21st pick. Mack or another C like him would have been available in the 2nd round. Grade F-

That’s what I think. Tell me what you think.

Bill Smith is a former coach of several semi-pro teams, has officiated both football and basketball, done color on radio for college football and basketball and has scouted talent. He is a senior writer for and edits He has also published several novels on and edits .

My email is [email protected]

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2 thoughts on “AFC Draft winners and losers”

  1. Great material Bill. I am a little worried about the Bengals picks. They have had character issues with players in the past but still continue to draft those players on the fringe of being trouble.

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  2. I really like what the Jags did. I know they didn’t get a ton of skill guys but they built up their offensive line, which is what they are made of. If they can’t run the ball, they can’t do anything.

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