NFL draft 2022: Assessing each team’s picking performance after seven rounds
The NFL wrapped up the third and final day of its first Las Vegas draft Saturday, completing Rounds 4-7 of its annual dice roll.
In all, nine players from Los Angeles universities were selected.
The six UCLA Bruins: tight end Greg Dulcich (third round, Denver), offensive lineman Sean Rhyan (third round, Green Bay), defensive tackle Otito Ogbonnia (fifth round, Chargers), receiver Kyle Philips (fifth round, Tennessee), safety Quentin Lake (sixth round, Rams) and running back Brittain Brown (seventh round, Las Vegas).
The three USC Trojans: receiver Drake London (eighth pick, Atlanta), edge rusher Drake Jackson (second round, San Francisco) and running back Keaontay Ingram (sixth round, Arizona).
How the teams fared:
Five defensive players to start the night? A record six receivers in the first 20 picks? Here are 32 takeaways from the first round of the 2022 NFL draft.
Arizona: History has shown that the Cardinals have had more luck acquiring talent through trades and that acquisition of Baltimore receiver Marquis “Hollywood” Brown looks pretty good.
Atlanta: The Falcons have some big targets, adding USC receiver Drake London a year after drafting tight end Kyle Pitts. Will be interesting to see if they reached by taking Montana State linebacker Troy Andersen in the second, especially with Georgia’s Nakobe Dean still on the board.
Baltimore: Michigan edge David Ojabo was a smart pickup in the second round, even though he’s coming off a torn Achilles. He eventually could be that bookend pass rusher the Ravens haven’t had since Terrell Suggs.
Buffalo: They addressed a big area of need by taking Florida corner Kaiir Elam in the first. Tre’Davious White is coming off a knee injury and team lost Levi Wallace in free agency.
Carolina: Quarterback is still a concern, but the Panthers didn’t panic. They addressed their need for an offensive tackle, took a deep breath and patiently waited for a passer before taking Mississippi’s Matt Corral in the third.
Chicago: The Bears used a fifth-round pick on an intriguing defensive end, Dominique Robinson of Miami (Ohio). He proved at the Senior Bowl that he’s capable of making a splash at the next level.
Cincinnati: The Bengals stuck to the plan and took Michigan safety Daxton Hill at the end of the first. They have their starting safeties in Vonn Bell and Jessie Bates, but neither is signed beyond this season. Plus, you can never have too many good defensive backs.
Cleveland: Odd not seeing the Browns making a pick near the top of the draft. Because of the Deshaun Watson trade, they didn’t have a first-rounder — and won’t for the next two years — and then they bailed out of their second-round spot for more picks.
Dallas: South Alabama’s Jalen Tolbert can play every wide-receiver spot and softens the blow of losing Cedrick Wilson. Tulsa tackle Tyler Smith could be good, but he’s raw and prone to penalties, including 12 holding calls last season.
Denver: The Broncos can’t rest all of their pass-rushing hopes on Bradley Chubb and the banged-up Randy Gregory, so drafting Oklahoma outside linebacker Nik Bonitto in the second round was smart.
Detroit: The Lions ramped up their pass rush with Michigan’s Aidan Hutchinson and Kentucky’s Joshua Paschal, and made a big trade up in the first for Alabama receiver Jameson Williams, giving Jared Goff another dangerous target.
Green Bay: Once again, the Packers passed on taking a receiver in the first round. They gave Aaron Rodgers a gift in the second, though, with North Dakota State’s Christian Watson.
Which SoCal high school stars were taken in NFL draft? Jefferson High and Nevada standout Romeo Doubs taken by Green Bay Packers.
Houston: Even though they needed a safety, and Kyle Hamilton would have been there at 13, the Texans traded back a couple of spots. That allowed Baltimore to take the star from Notre Dame, and Houston filled a need on the offensive line with Texas A&M guard Kenyon Green.
Indianapolis: Sharp maneuvering trading back 11 spots in the second round and still getting the player they wanted, Cincinnati receiver Alec Pierce, and acquiring the pick to get Central Michigan tackle Bernhard Raimann in the fourth.
Jacksonville: Utah’s Devin Lloyd widely was considered the best inside linebacker in this class, and the type of tackler who’s invaluable in a division that includes running backs such as Derrick Henry and Jonathan Taylor.
Kansas City: The Chiefs traded up in the first round, but it wasn’t for a receiver to replace Tyreek Hill. They got a good corner in Washington’s Trent McDuffie and, at 30, a relentless pass rusher in Purdue’s George Karlaftis.
Las Vegas: Smart move that the Raiders opted not to pick up the fifth-year option of Josh Jacobs and instead drafted his heir apparent in Georgia running back Zamir White, a bargain in the fourth round.
Chargers: As with last year when they took an outstanding tackle in the first round, the Chargers landed a polished and NFL-ready guard in Boston College’s Zion Johnson. If there was a surprise, it’s that they didn’t use one of their better picks on a cornerback or pass rusher.
Rams: The Rams like those proven players and they got one by trading for cornerback Troy Hill, who was too expensive for them after a big year in 2020. Now that he’s back, he fills a vacancy left by Darious Williams and can help bring along draftees Decobie Durant and Derion Kendrick.
Miami: The Dolphins didn’t have a pick in the first two rounds because of the Tyreek Hill trade. That’s the price of landing the most explosive player in the league. They did need a center, so it might haunt them that they went linebacker, receiver in the third and fourth rounds.
Minnesota: Five of their first six picks were defenders, including talented Georgia safety Lewis Cine with the final pick of the first round. Louisiana State guard Ed Ingram will help shore the interior of the offensive line.
New England: Taking Chattanooga guard Cole Strange in the first? The Rams thought he might be around for them in the third. Conjecture is the Patriots had to scramble when Devin Lloyd was snapped up just before they were picking.
The Rams did not have many high NFL draft picks, but they felt comfortable enough as champions to sit back and add depth to their talented roster.
New Orleans: Good news for Jameis Winston. The Saints made an aggressive move up in the first to get Ohio State receiver Chris Olave, then used their second first-round pick on a left tackle, Northern Iowa’s Trevor Penning.
N.Y. Giants: The Giants crushed it in the first by getting both defensive end Kayvon Thibodeaux and Evan Neal, widely seen as the best tackle. If there was a head scratcher it was their apparent reach for Kentucky receiver Wan’Dale Robinson in the second.
N.Y. Jets: Smooth move trading back into the first for Florida edge rusher Jermaine Johnson II. Using a third-round pick on Ohio State tight end Jeremy Ruckert might turn out to be genius, but this team already spent a lot of cash on tight ends C.J. Uzomah and Tyler Conklin.
Philadelphia: The Eagles were big winners in trading for receiver A.J. Brown, a game changer when he’s healthy. They also got Georgia linebacker Nakobe Dean in the third round, a bargain if his shoulder holds up.
Pittsburgh: The Steelers got a potential star in the second in Georgia receiver George Pickens, one of those big targets they’ve used so effectively in the past. He dropped because he’s coming off a knee injury.
The 2022 NFL draft didn’t go as expected. The Chargers had to wait until later rounds to fill some of their glaring needs after a great start to draft.
San Francisco: The 49ers got a really fast receiver in Southern Methodist’s Danny Gray, who can stretch the field and create space for Deebo Samuel and tight end George Kittle. But they also used another pick on LSU’s Tyrion Davis-Price in the third round, when there were more pressing needs.
Seattle: The Seahawks stocked up on offensive tackles by taking Mississippi State’s Charles Cross in the first round and Washington State’s Abraham Lucas in the third. Seattle used a valuable pick on Michigan State running back Kenneth Walker III, but the neck health of Rashaad Penny is an issue.
Tampa Bay: Using the first pick of the second round on Houston defensive lineman Logan Hall looks pretty solid. They’re getting old on the defensive line and chose not to re-sign Ndamukong Suh. Hall was born six days after Tom Brady was drafted.
Tennessee: Liberty quarterback Malik Willis widely was projected to wind up in Pittsburgh as the No. 20 pick. Instead, he tumbled all the way to the third round where the Titans got him at a value.
Washington: The Commanders got a guy with great hands in Penn State receiver Jahan Dotson, which is not only good for quarterback Carson Wentz but also helps take the heat off fellow receiver Terry McLaurin.
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