Draft Grades - AFC North: Browns, Bengals shock for different reasons

Sam Greene/Cincinnati Enquirer via USA TODAY NETWORK

With the 2017 NFL Draft officially complete, theScore's NFL editors hand out their initial grades for how teams fared during all seven rounds.


Baltimore Ravens

1 CB Marlon Humphrey
2 LB Tyus Bowser
3 DE Chris Wormley
3 LB Tim Williams
4 G Nico Siragusa
5 OL Jermaine Eluemunor
6 S Chuck Clark

As usual, Ravens general manager Ozzie Newsome sat back and scooped up excellent value in almost every round of the draft. Humphrey's a significant upgrade at cornerback who can contribute immediately in a secondary that could be one of the league's best. Baltimore also added a ton of talent to its front seven, grabbing Bowser, Wormley, and Williams well after they were projected to be taken.

Grade: B+

Cincinnati Bengals

1 WR John Ross
2 RB Joe Mixon
3 DE Jordan Willis
4 DE Carl Lawson
4 WR Josh Malone
4 DT Ryan Glasgow
5 K Jake Elliott
5 OL J.J. Dielman
6 LB Jordan Evans
6 CB Brandon Wilson
7 TE Mason Schreck

The Bengals' draft class will be judged in large part based on the selection of Mixon, a player whose immense talent is overshadowed by serious off-field concerns. The video of Mixon knocking out a woman in college is an image fans won't easily forget that will follow the running back throughout his career. Prior to drafting Mixon, Cincinnati surprised many by making Ross the ninth pick overall. If he stays healthy, Ross has a chance to be the best receiver in this class and will provide the offense with a much-needed depth threat. The team restocked at defensive end with Willis and Lawson, who both fell lower in the draft than many expected.

Grade: B-

Cleveland Browns

1 DE Myles Garrett
1 S Jabrill Peppers
1 TE David Njoku
2 QB DeShone Kizer
3 DT Larry Ogunjobi
4 CB Howard Wilson
5 OT Roderick Johnson
6 DT Caleb Brantley
7 K Zane Gonzalez
7 RB Matthew Dayes

Welcome to 2017, when 28-point comebacks can happen in the Super Bowl and the Browns can emerge as the clear-cut winners of the draft. It seems strange to make such a declaration, but Cleveland did everything right, taking an elite talent in Garrett first overall, grabbing a defensive playmaker in Peppers later in the first, and then trading back into the opening round to get an athletic freak, tight end Njoku. From there, the Browns found a potential starting quarterback on Day 2 by selecting Kizer, who, despite his flaws, could emerge as the best passer in this class. The Browns made a controversial pick by taking Brantley in the sixth, but have already threatened to cut him.

Grade: A+

Pittsburgh Steelers

1 LB T.J. Watt
2 WR JuJu Smith-Schuster
3 CB Cameron Sutton
3 RB James Conner
4 QB Joshua Dobbs
5 CB Brian Allen
6 LS Colin Holba
7 DE Keion Adams

The Steelers loaded up on high character guys like J.J. Watt's brother T.J. and cancer survivor Conner. Smith-Schuster gives them another receiving weapon and a potential insurance policy for Martavis Bryant, while Sutton addresses an area of need at corner. The most intriguing pick could end up being Dobbs, who may one day take over under center when Ben Roethlisberger actually retires.

Grade: B

Draft Grades - AFC North: Browns, Bengals shock for different reasons
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