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NFL Draft Grades: AFC North

Joe Robbins / Getty Images Sport / Getty

With the 2020 NFL Draft officially complete, theScore's NFL editors hand out their initial grades for how teams fared over the course of the three-day event.


Baltimore Ravens

Round Pick Player
1 28 LB Patrick Queen
2 55 RB J.K. Dobbins
3 71 DT Justin Madubuike
3 92 WR Devin Duvernay
3 98 LB Malik Harrison
3 106 G Tyre Phillips
4 143 G Ben Bredeson
5 170 DT Broderick Washington
6 201 WR James Proche
7 219 S Geno Stone

Grade: A-

If Queen had been taken in the late teens, no one would have batted an eye -he was one of the most talented coverage linebackers in the draft. At No. 28, he's a steal for Baltimore and fills its biggest need. Madubuike got some first-round buzz early in the process, while Harrison gives the Ravens even more help in the middle of their defense. Pairing the super-explosive Dobbins with Lamar Jackson in the backfield just seems unfair.

Cincinnati Bengals

Round Pick Player
1 1 QB Joe Burrow
2 33 WR Tee Higgins
3 65 LB Logan Wilson
4 107 LB Akeem Davis-Gaither
5 147 DE Khalid Kareem
6 180 G Hakeem Adeniji
7 215 LB Markus Bailey

Grade: A-

It was a no-brainer to take Burrow with the first overall pick, but that doesn't mean the Bengals shouldn't get any credit for kickstarting an exciting new era in the franchise's history. Aside from elite arm strength, the former LSU quarterback has everything you want in a franchise player. Elsewhere, Cincinnati took advantage of a stacked receiver class, drafting Tee Higgins, who some viewed as a first-rounder, to open the second round. After Higgins, the Bengals smartly used nearly all their remaining picks to get their defense some much-needed depth.

Cleveland Browns

Round Pick Player
1 10 OT Jedrick Wills
2 44 S Grant Delpit
3 88 DT Jordan Elliott
3 97 LB Jacob Phillips
4 115 TE Harrison Bryant
5 160 C Nick Harris
6 187 WR Donovan Peoples-Jones

Grade: B+

You can argue that every one of the Browns' picks could have been taken higher than where ultimately selected by Cleveland. Baker Mayfield desperately needs better protection, and Wills should be a Day 1 starter, though his transition to left tackle makes him somewhat of a risk. Delpit, who was widely tipped to go late in the first round, fills one of the club's most pressing needs. Bryant, the 2019 John Mackey Award winner, might not have the highest ceiling, but his refined skill set means he could make an immediate impact.

Pittsburgh Steelers

Round Pick Player
2 49 WR Chase Claypool
3 102 LB Alex Highsmith
4 124 RB Anthony McFarland Jr.
4 135 G Kevin Dotson
6 198 S Antoine Brooks Jr.
7 232 DT Carlos Davis

Grade: C

The Steelers gave up their first-rounder for Minkah Fitzpatrick, a move that immediately looked like a masterstroke after the safety had five interceptions in 2019. But the deal left Pittsburgh without a pick until No. 49, and it arguably reached for Claypool, who's an impressive athlete but might not be able to contribute much in Year 1. Dotson could start right away, but McFarland Jr. and Highsmith are also unlikely to immediately help a team that should be doing all it can to win a title in Ben Roethlisberger's final years.

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