Commings is a big and physical cornerback that has the versatility to line up at the safety position. He excels in press coverage and can open up to carry receivers downfield. While he has some tightness in off-man coverage, he shows above-average instincts in terms of finding and playing the ball. They added UFAs Sean Smith and Dunta Robinson to go along with the steady Brandon Flowers, and Commings may give them the flexibility to move Javier Arenas inside, where he fits best.
Robinson is a raw athlete who will transition to wide receiver and be utilized as a return specialist. He has great speed and a rare extra gear when he's able to find a seam and hit the open field. He is still a long ways away in terms of a developing as a route-runner, and doesn't have natural ball skills at this point. He must continue to develop in these areas to ever become an impact receiver, but Robinson should be able to make a instant difference as a returner. The Jaguars' other WR draft pick, Ace Sanders, has a similar skill set, but both players are expected to contribute in the kicking game as return specialists. Right now, the Jaguars do not have a returner they can count on.
Wolff has just average instincts and needs to harness his aggressiveness against the run, because he overruns too many plays, but he has an above-average blend of size and speed. He's fast enough to play a center-fielder role and run with most slot receivers. He's also an effective wrap-up tackler when he takes a sound angle. This has been a big need for the Eagles' defense. This new coaching staff will likely utilize more Cover 2 and Cover 3 zone schemes and less man to man, which will take pressure off the Eagles' safeties in coverage.
Williams likely dropped to the fifth round due to durability concerns after a late-season knee injury. However, on tape he shows a strong anchor and upper body power to eat up space and hold his gap. Williams doesn't have a ton of range and isn't an impact pass rusher. However, he should immediately bolster the depth on the interior defensive line. As good as this defense is, it struggled last season versus the inside run. The Seahawks don't need a lot of pass-rush help; they just need guys who can stack better at the point of attack.
Simon has excellent size and length for the cornerback position. He can turn and open to run with receivers downfield and plays the ball well when in position. However, Simon is high-cut and can become off-balance when forced to move suddenly. In addition, he is a bit inconsistent as a tackler and will pick and choose his battles. The positive sign is that Seattle is an ideal fit for Simon to succeed. The Seahawks added UFA Antoine Winfield to go with their elite starting duo at CB, so Simon should add depth at No. 4.
Hughes is a massive space-eater that is light on his feet and shows above-average lateral agility. He shows a powerful punch and can control and shed blockers when playing with leverage. However, he must learn to play with more consistent pad level and continue to develop as a pass rusher. In addition, he has some character issues that likely caused him to fall into the fifth round. This coaching staff really wants to get more physical versus the run, and it upgraded with two UFAs at DT. Hughes will add to that size and physicality.
Taylor has ideal size and runs with excellent power and balance. He also shows good vision, and does a nice job setting his pads and getting upfield when finding a crease. While he has adequate lateral agility, he lacks juice and doesn't have great acceleration out of his cuts. In addition, he is just average in terms of versatility as a pass-catcher. Taylor has the chance to add depth and develop into a No. 2 back. The Cardinals' top two veteran backs, Rashard Mendenhall and Ryan Williams, have health issues and durability questions, which could push Taylor up.
Aboushi is a bit heavy-footed and will likely have to kick inside to guard after playing left tackle at Virginia. He is smart and shows an above-average inline power base to get movement on defenders. Aboushi has a chance to develop into a starter on the interior due to his short-area quickness and toughness, which are crucial for the position. Both starters from last season are gone, but the Jets did add UFA Willie Colon, and have now added two guards in the draft to bolster a position that really lacked depth.
Edwards isn't as talented as the two LSU defensive ends taken before him, and he's not as expected to make as much of an impact rushing off the edge. However, he is relentless both rushing the passer and chasing the run. He's also versatile enough to line up at end in a three- or four-man front, and he's athletic enough to drop into zone coverage on occasion. The Titans have a lot of money tied up in Kamerion Wimbley and Derrick Morgan, and they are not getting enough big plays out of them. Depth is also a problem. Edwards has a chance to play right away.
Meeks is a better athlete than football player right now. He has a lot of raw talent in terms of feet, top-end speed and overall range. Meeks can continue to improve his instincts and become more consistent as a tackler. However, he should add depth and be able to make an immediate impact on special teams. With this new coaching staff running some 4-2-5 schemes, it requires a lot of flexibility at safety. Meeks is the Bills' second safety drafted to go along with veteran Jairus Byrd.
Stills ran exceptionally well at the combine. He doesn't always show that type of speed on tape but he is a smooth route-runner who transitions well out of his breaks to create separation. Still also shows above-average body control, and while he will have an occasional drop he flashes ability to open up and make catches outside his frame. He must continue to get stronger, but he has the versatility to line up all over the field and add depth to the Saints' receiving corps. We know how much the Saints like to use multi-WR sets. They are looking to upgrade the No. 3 and No. 4 spots, and that's where Stills needs to make his mark.
Williams lacks size and strength to consistently hold up on an island. However, he is fluid and has solid man-coverage skills. His feet and closing burst jump off the tape. Williams is also willing to step up in run support, although he can struggle to wrap up bigger backs. He should be a nice fit as a sub-package nickelback at the next level. Last year's starters, Quentin Jammer and Antoine Cason, are gone, but the Chargers did add Derek Cox in free agency. So this is a depth need who may be able to play a little quicker than expected.
Durability issues and questionable work ethic are concerns. This small-school player appears more than capable of making the jump to the NFL based on his tape, though, and he even recorded three sacks against Alabama. He's at his best getting after the quarterback. He's quick, he bends well and he closes well. As pass-rushers, Robert Ayers has been an underachiever and Derek Wolfe is OK but not dynamic. If Smith can make a smooth transition, he has a chance to be in the Broncos' DE rotation.
Means is raw, but has a lot of upside with a great frame. He is long, flexible, and has natural and heavy hands. He jumped out on the Georgia tape and had a few pressures throughout the game. Means was out of position at Buffalo, lining up as a two-gapper in their 3-4 scheme. He has a chance to excel as a traditional DE for Tampa Bay if developed with proper coaching. Starters Da'Quan Bowers and Adrian Clayborn are solid, but earlier DE draft pick William Gholston is a developmental guy. So Means fits in this defense.
Klein is an instictive, throwback-type linebacker. While he doesn't have a ton of explosive power, he does a nice job absorbing blocks and wading through traffic. Klein changes directions well but has just an average closing burst and will have limitations in man coverage. It's an interesting pick because Luke Kuechly is an elite player and his backup, Chase Blackburn, is also solid. And now, Carolina has added two space-eating DTs in the draft to protect the LBs, so we could see Klein slide to the outside, where the Panthers have had a lot of injury problems.
McGee has adequate size and top-end speed. He also flashes above-average instincts and makes a quick reaction. He will gamble on occasion and has some tightness when transitioning to recover when caught out of position. McGee is willing to step up in run support, but needs to get stronger and more effective in this area. He can add depth to a secondary. The Rams prefer to play a lot of aggressive man-to-man schemes, but they may not have the personnel to do it effectively. Look for McGee to have a chance to occasionally blitz off the slot if he can get on the field in sub packages.
Hawthorne doesn't show great fluidity and he allows too much separation on crisp breaks, but he has the speed and length to develop into an effective press corner. He's also a tough and willing run defender who does a nice job of wrapping up and limiting production after contact. Keenan Lewis is gone and Cortez Allen will step in opposite Ike Taylor, but he may not be the long-term answer. This secondary likes to play a lot of different coverages, so versatility for Hawthorne will be important.
Randle is a versatile change-of-pace back. He shows quick lateral agility to make defenders miss in the hole, and has above-average vision and patience as a runner. In addition, he is an above-average route runner who can create separation, and is a natural pass-catcher who transitions quickly after the catch. The only knocks are his lack of top-end speed and average power as a runner. He will be asked to be a complement to starter DeMarco Murray, but he really doesn't have a special skill set. He could be effective in the outlet passing game.
Taylor is a Georgia Tech transfer with some durability concerns. He doesn't have great fluidity for a safety, or size for an outside linebacker, but he has the tools to make an impact as a sub-package and special teams player. He also made the most of the offseason process, running well at his pro day and impressing the coaches at the East-West Shrine Game. The Giants like to play a lot with their big nickel (five DBs, including three safeties) to make them more physical. That gives Taylor a chance to get into the mix early.
Maponga is undersized and he can get engulfed when teams run at him. He's far more effective rushing the passer. He is dynamic, showing the burst and bend to turn the corner, in addition to the quick hands and lateral mobility to work back inside. This is obviously a need because he's the second DE the Falcons have drafted. UFA Osi Umenyiora is really the only proven edge rusher they have right now. It's obvious these coaches want the edge rush to be better.
Thompson has a laundry list of of major injuries, including a season-ending back injury early in his career and a torn ACL this past fall. When healthy, Thompson reminded us of Warrick Dunn. Thompson appears to be gliding on the field, and has rare acceleration to hit the home run when finding the open field. He doesn't have exceptional lateral agility and power, but he is versatile and a big-play threat every time he touches the ball. Although RB doesn't look like a need here, his skill set is different enough from Alfred Morris' that it gives the Redskins' offense a lot more versatility.
Locke has a strong leg and gets the ball out quickly with a compact, two-step release. He gets above-average distance and hang time. Also, he has the touch to pin opponents inside their own 10-yard line. Chris Kluwe is coming off a career low in terms of production and had periods of inconsistency in 2012. He has also been a very outspoken guy whom a lot of people think talks too much for a punter. This organization may want to give someone else a chance.
Hawkinson has an above-average frame and adequate feet. However, he must learn to play with better pad level in general. In pass protection, he can struggle with speed-to-power moves and can be rocked back on his heels. Hawkinson doesn't have an ideal inline power base, but he can be an effective positional blocker when playing with leverage. Health and free-agent defections have been a concern at this position, and Hawkinson gives the Bengals some flexibility and depth. This unit uses more zone-blocking schemes than you might think, and that suits his skill set.
Dial has a strong frame and is thick throughout. He can anchor at the point of attack and shows heavy hands. He lacks ideal athleticism, though, and doesn't provide much as a pass-rusher aside from a bull-rush. Dial should bring depth as a run stopper along the front line. The 49ers have done such a good job in personnel that they have plenty of edge pass-rushers, so they really need Dial to contribute more versus the run as a 3-4 or 4-3 DE.
Wilson has some upside as a pass-catcher, and flashed to us at the NFLPA all-star game in January. He shows ability to open up and run, and flashes good body control catching the ball. Wilson must improve his strength as an inline blocker and learn to play with better pad level. This is an interesting selection because the Seahawks have two pretty good TEs, but the coaches have expressed that they want to use more multi-TE sets, so this gives them a little more flexibility.
Hyde reads receivers and breaks on the ball well. He also has the ball skills and aggressiveness to develop into a playmaker. The biggest reason he didn't come off the board earlier is a lack of fluidity and top-end speed to develop quality man-to-man cover skills. The Packers are decent on the edges at CB, but without Charles Woodson, it might be interesting to see Hyde get a shot as a slot corner who can also give them some blitz production from that position.
Stacy runs with a lot of determination and stays behind his pads. He has ideal balance and can run through contact. While he has just average lateral quickness and speed, he shows the instincts to set up and utilize his blocks, and provides versatility in the passing game. We also love his finishing ability as a runner. The other backs on the Rams' roster are complementary guys; they needed a workhorse, between-the-tackles guy who can give them Steven Jackson-type production and take some pressure off QB Sam Bradford. Stacy should be that guy.
King's strength is as a vertical route-runner. He can open up and run, and has the stride length and speed to stretch the field. King has some tightness as a underneath route-runner and doesn't always get adequate separation. He will have an occasional drop, but has the body control and size to win one-on-one downfield battles. The Broncos have one vertical threat in Demaryius Thomas with a lot of other options in the short-to-intermediate routes. And with Kings's ability to take the top off the defense in sub packages, it should really open things up for Peyton Manning if King can handle the sight adjustments that this passing game requires.
Jenkins saw his senior year cut short due to a broken foot in the season opener. However, he provides upside as a pass-rusher off the edge. Jenkins shows good first-step quickness and flashes a wide variety of pass-rush moves. He can learn to play with better leverage when setting the edge, however. The return of starters Ryan Kerrigan and Brian Orakpo, and the addition of free agent Darryl Tapp, should give this position production and depth, allowing Jenkins some time to develop as another edge rusher.
Mills has problems with speed off the edge in pass pro, and he's not great in space when he releases up to the second level as a run blocker. However, he has the length, frame and power base to develop into an effective right tackle at the NFL level. He also has the work ethic and desire to realize that upside. We know how poorly this unit has played in recent years, but the signing of LT Jermon Bushrod allowed Chicago to move J'Marcus Webb to RT, but he may not be the answer. Mills should get every chance to compete with Webb at RT.
Gillislee burst on the scene with a strong senior year. He is quick and can accelerate out of his cuts. Gillislee also does a nice job of utlizing his blocks. He also has some versatility as a pass-catcher. He doesn't always run behind his pads and lacks power, but he can develop into a nice change-of-pace back. The Dolphins miss Reggie Bush's versatility, and although Lamar Miller and Daniel Thomas have flashed at times, the Dolphins do not have a lot of production between the tackles. Gillislee does not look like that power, ball-control back, either.
Martin has the versatility to handle all three phases of the kicking game. He shows an adequate leg and gets good distance and hang time on his punts. Martin also has enough leg to drive the ball on his kickoffs. The good news for Martin is that punter Blake Clingan and kicker David Akers are not entrenched at their positions. So it looks like an open competition.
Sturgis has had a consistent career and shined at the East-West Shrine Game. He has an adequate leg and very good accuracy as a kicker. He also gets good distance on his kickoffs. He will compete with Dan Carpenter for the job, and it should be an open competition in training camp.
Boyd projects as a two-down player because he doesn't offer much as a pass-rusher, and he appears to wear down at times. He can help bolster a team's run defense, though. He's built like a fire hydrant, and he's tough to move off the ball with one blocker. He also has the upper-body strength to press and control blockers. Ryan Pickett and B.J. Raji are entering the final years of their contracts, and Jerel Worthy and Mike Neal continue to fight injuries, so Boyd could certainly add some depth and insurance versus the run in this defensive front.
Wagner has an ideal frame, but is a bit heavy-footed and doesn't have ideal lateral agility. He does show strong hands to latch on and anchor when he gets into position, though. He will struggle with explosive speed rushers, but Wagner has a strong inline power base to move defenders off the ball, though he lacks balance and can fall off blocks at times. Although the Ravens would like to play Michael Oher at RT, it looks like they will be forced to move him to LT and insert Jah Reid at RT. That probably means Wagner will back up at RT unless he has enough athletic ability to be a swing guy.