Cover Image for NFL Draft Ratings By Team: Do The Chicago Bears Get An A+ For Justin Fields In 2021 NFL Draft Grades?

NFL Draft Ratings By Team: Do The Chicago Bears Get An A+ For Justin Fields In 2021 NFL Draft Grades?

Ashish Priyadarshi
|Sun May 02 2021

NFL Draft Ratings By Team: The 2021 NFL Draft is all wrapped up, and it had a lot of drama. At the end of it, which teams walked away with a good draft?

Several teams hit on most of their picks, and a lot of teams made some surprise moves to take higher-tier players. Of course, there were also those teams who missed out completely.

Read on to see how each team did in this year’s NFL Draft.

Also Read: “I’ve gone through situations where I haven’t been chosen.” Justin Fields isn’t flustered after falling to 11th in the 2021 NFL draft.

NFL Draft Ratings By Team

#1. Arizona Cardinals

Grade: C+

Draft picks: Tulsa LB Zaven Collins, Purdue WR Rondale Moore, Florida CB Marco Wilson, Duke EDGE Victor Dimukeje, UCF CB Tay Gowan, Cincinnati S James Wiggins, Penn State C/G Michel Menet

The Arizona Cardinals do get a high-upside, playmaking linebacker in Zaven Collins, but cornerback was a far more pressing need with the loss of Patrick Peterson this year.

Additionally, Rondale Moore seems to be more of a luxury pick than anything with a strong receiver core already. However, they did hit on Gowan and Wilson in later rounds.

#2. Atlanta Falcons

Grade: B+

Draft picks: Florida TE Kyle Pitts, TCU S Richie Grant, Michigan OT/G Jalen Mayfield, San Diego State CB Darren Hall, Stanford C Drew Dalman, Texas DT Ta’Quon Graham, Notre Dame DE Adetokunbo Ogundeji, Boise State CB Avery Williams, Arizona State WR Frank Darby

The Falcons bolstered their offensive unit even further by taking Pitts at number 4 who looks to be a generational talent. They also continued their commitment to strengthening the defensive unit in further rounds.

Grant can start at safety from day 1, and Hall could be a great replacement for Trufant who struggled last year. Overall, a solid draft for Falcons fans, but the thought of taking a quarterback at #4 will always linger in the back of Falcons fans’ heads.

#3. Baltimore Ravens

Grade: A

Draft picks: Minnesota WR Rashod Bateman, Penn State EDGE Odafe Oweh, Georgia G Ben Cleveland, SMU CB Brandon Stephens, Oklahoma State WR Tylan Wallace, Ohio State CB Shaun Wade, Notre Dame EDGE Daelin Hayes, Michigan FB Ben Mason

Throughout the free-agency period, the Ravens organization was bashed after failing to land a top-tier receiver. Well, they addressed that need right away with Bateman who is one of the best receivers in this class.

After that, they continued to build on both sides of ball. They compensated for the loss of Judon and Nagakoue by bringing in Oweh and Hayes.

#4. Buffalo Bills

Grade: B+

Draft picks: Miami EDGE Gregory Rousseau, Wake Forest EDGE Carlos Basham Jr., Northern Iowa OT Spencer Brown, Miami (Ohio) OT Tommy Doyle, Houston WR Marquez Stevenson, Pittsburgh S Damar Hamlin, Wisconsin CB Rachad Wildgoose, Texas Tech G Jack Anderson

The Bills addressed their biggest area of need with their first two picks in the draft by picking up EDGE rushers Rousseau and Basham.

However, the Bills run game is still lacking, and they didn’t do anything about in the draft. However, they did shore up the offensive line  by adding solid tackles in Brown and Doyle.

#5. Carolina Panthers

Grade: B

Draft picks: South Carolina CB Jaycee Horn, LSU WR Terrace Marshall Jr., BYU OT/G Brady Christensen, Notre Dame TE Tommy Tremble, Oklahoma State RB Chuba Hubbard, Iowa DT Daviyon Nixon, Washington CB Keith Taylor, Alabama G Deonte Brown, South Carolina WR Shi Smith, Alabama LS Thomas Fletcher, Kentucky DT Phil Hoskins

There was tremendous speculation that the Panthers would draft a quarterback with their first pick, but they put all that to bed by taking Horn, showing their commitment to Sam Darnold.

However, Surtain may have been the better choice. They did provide Sam Darnold with plenty of weapons by taking Marshall, Tremble, and Hubbard who will look to contribute immediately.

#6. Chicago Bears

Grade: A+

Draft picks: Ohio State QB Justin Fields, Oklahoma State OT Teven Jenkins, Missouri OT Larry Borom, Virginia Tech RB Khalil Herbert, North Carolina WR Dazz Newsome, Oregon CB Thomas Graham Jr., BYU DT Khyiris Tonga

The Bears made perhaps the biggest, boldest, and most surprising move of the draft when they traded up 9 spots to land Justin Fields. The move will absolutely define Matt Nagy and Ryan Pace’s job security in the future, but it was a risk worth taking as many had slotted Fields to go as far as #2 in this draft.

The move to pick up Jenkins was another stunner by Pace as Jenkins was projected to go in the first round. However, the Bears could have done more to address the cornerback position earlier in the draft.

#7. Cincinnati Bengals

Grade: B+

Draft picks: LSU WR Ja’Marr Chase, Clemson OT Jackson Carman, Texans DE Joseph Ossai, Tulane DE Cameron Sample, LSU DT Tyler Shelvin, East Carolina OT D’Ante Smith, Florida K Evan MacPherson, Georgia C Trey Hill, Michigan RB Chris Evans, Kansas State DE Wyatt Hubert

The Bengals may not have picked anyone who was necessarily bad, but their decision to take Chase instead of an offensive lineman like Sewell may come back to bite them.

Carman was a great pickup in the second round, but the Bengals also did not invest in their running game as they took Evans far later.

#8. Cleveland Browns

Grade: A-

Draft picks: Northwestern CB Greg Newsome II, Notre Dame LB Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah, Auburn WR Anthony Schwartz, Cincinnati OT James Hudson, Ohio State DT Tommy Togiai, West Virginia ILB Tony Fields, Georgia S Richard LeCounte, UCLA RB/WR/KR Demetric Felton

Picking Newsome in the first round was a brilliant move by Andrew Berry who addressed their biggest need right away.

They also bring in a great playmaker on the offensive side with Schwartz, and they proceeded to add depth all across the board in this draft. This Browns roster is suddenly looking very formidable.

#9. Dallas Cowboys

Grade: C+

Draft picks: Penn State LB Micah Parsons, Kentucky ‘CB Kelvin Joseph, UCLA DT Osa Odighizuwa, Iowa EDGE Chauncey Golston, Oregon State CB Nahshon Wright, LSU LB Jabril Cox, Marshall OT Josh Ball, Stanford WR Simi Fehoko, Kentucky DT Quinton Bohana, South Carolina CB Israel Mukuamu, Nebraska G Matt Farniok

After seeing Surtain and Horn get taken right before the Cowboys’ pick, Dallas made the right move by trading down. However, they turned that pick into Parsons. While Parsons can contribute immediately, the defensive back position remains a big question mark for Dallas.

They did pick up corners Joseph and Wright, but these picks may have been reaches. Ball and Fehoko could turn into contributors if they put in a solid offseason.

#10. Denver Broncos

Grade: B-

Draft picks: Alabama CB Patrick Surtain II, North Carolina RB Javonte Williams, Wisconsin-Whitewater G Quinn Meinerz, Ohio State LB Baron Browning, Texas S Caden Stearns, Indiana S Jamar Johnson, Auburn WR Seth Williams, LSU CB Kary Vincent Jr., Ohio State EDGE Jonathon Cooper, Mississippi State DE Marquiss Spencer

The Bronco’s draft grade here isn’t based on who they selected, but rather who they chose to not select. The quarterback situation is still unclear despite the trade for Teddy Bridgewater. If Fields finds success in Chicago, the Broncos will forever look back on this draft.

With that being said, the Broncos did definitely take the best players available to fill their needs. Surtain is arguably the best corner in this draft, and Williams will fill a hole in the running back position after Lindsay left.

#11. Detroit Lions

Grade: B+

Draft picks: Oregon OT Penei Sewell, Washington DT Levi Onwuzurike, NC State DT Alim McNeill, Syracuse CB Ifeatu Melifonwu, USC WR Amon-Ra St. Brown, Purdue LB Derrick Barnes, Oregon State RB Jermar Jefferson

The Lions got the best offensive lineman in the draft with Sewell, bolstering an area of need for them. Additionally, the decision to draft Brown later on will be looked at as underrated move if he develops to his full potential.

However, by taking Sewell, the Lions did compromise on taking a receiver earlier, and filling Golladay’s void becomes that much harder.

#12. Green Bay Packers

Grade: B-

Draft picks: Georgia CB Eric Stokes, Ohio State C Josh Myers, WR Amari Rodgers, Ole Miss G Royce Newman, Florida DT Tedarrell Slaton, Appalachian State CB Shemar Jean-Charles, Wisconsin OT Cole Van Lanen, Boston College ILB Isaiah McDuffie, Mississippi State RB Kylin Hill

The Aaron Rodgers drama overshadowed the Packers draft, but that doesn’t mean they didn’t have a good one. They could have definitely addressed an offensive skill position in the first round, but Stokes fills a big need as well.

Rodgers still has time to develop before he becomes a polished receiver in this scheme, but he’s set to be a solid contributor. Myers is likely to fill the vacancy left by Linsley, and he’s a good value pick too.

#13. Houston Texans

Grade: C

Draft picks: Stanford QB Davis Mills, Michigan WR Nico Collins, Miami TE Brevin Jordan, TCU IL Garret Wallow, Arizona DT Roy Lopez

The Texans didn’t have a lot to work with after losing picks in the Larmey Tunsil trade, and so they were really limited for what they could have done.

Davis Mills is clearly a contingency plan for Watson and Tyrod Taylor, but his lack of experience and production doesn’t make this an exciting pick. Collins and Jordan are set to make immediate impacts in the passing game, but the Texans did very little to address cornerback or EDGE positions.

#14. Indianapolis Colts

Grade: C+

Draft picks: Michigan DE/DT Kwity Paye, Vanderbilt EDGE Dayo Odeyingbo, SMU TE Kylen Granson, Florida S Shawn Davis, Texas QB Sam Ehlinger, Charleston WR Michael Strachan, Penn State OT Will Fries

Taking Kwity Paye was a solid way to improve the pass rush, and he’s sure to make an impact instantly. However, the Colts needed an offensive lineman, and they only addressed that need in the seventh round.

Davis is sure to be a playmaker in the secondary, and Granson could find his way into being a solid rotational piece. Strachan also has high upside with good athletic ability.

#15. Jacksonville Jaguars

Grade: A-

Draft picks: Clemson QB Trevor Lawrence, Clemson RB Travis Etienne, Stanford OT Walker Little, Syracuse S Andre Cisco, USC DT Jay Tufele, UAB DE Jordan Smith, Ohio State TE Luke Farrell, Georgia Tech WR Jalen Camp

It’s easy to give the Jaguars a good grade here after making the obvious selection of Trevor Lawrence who’s sure to provide a long-term answer at quarterback. However, the rest of their picks were a little questionable.

Etienne is a great player, but the Jaguars already had James Robinson, and they could have filled other needs like receiver or tight end instead to help Lawrence out. Nevertheless, the Jags have turned their franchise out.

#16. Kansas City Chiefs

Grade: B+

Draft picks: Missouri LB Nick Bolton, Oklahoma G/C Creed Humphrey, Florida State EDGE Joshua Kaindoh, Duke TE Noah Gray, Clemson WR Cornell Powell, Tennessee G Trey Smith

The Chiefs continued in their pursuit of overhauling the offensive line. Humphrey could be a day one contributor while Smith could fill the role at guard if Kyle Long struggles.

Bolton was a good pickup for the Chiefs for the front seven while Powell could serve well as a WR3 behind Hill and Hardman. The Chiefs didn’t have to do much here, but they capitalized when they had chances.

#17. Las Vegas Raiders

Grade: D

Draft picks: Alabama OT Alex Leatherwood, TCU S Trevon Moehrig, Buffalo LB Malcolm Koonce, Virginia Tech S Divine Deablo, Missouri S Tyree Gillespie, Illinois CB Nate Hobbs, Pittsburgh C Jimmy Morrissey

The Raiders simply did not have a great draft. Starting with the first round, they reached hard for Leatherwood. He may or may not pan out the way the Raiders hope he will, and at #17 that was too big a risk to take.

Further, Moehrig was a good pickup, but why take two more safeties in rounds 3 and 4 after him. The Raiders really needed to address the defensive line, but they failed to do that the entire draft.

#18. Los Angeles Chargers

Grade: A-

Draft picks: Northwestern OT Rashawn Slater, Florida State CB Asante Samuel Jr., Tennessee WR Josh Palmer, Georgia TE Tre’ McKitty, Duke EDGE Chris Rumph II, Nebraska OT Brenden Jaimes, Iowa ILB Nick Niemann, Missouri RB Larry Rountree III, Georgia S Mark Webb

Slater and Samuel were homerun picks, and they will impact the Chargers immediately. Getting protection for Herbert was a good decision.

The Chargers followed that up by nabbing a pair of playmakrs in Palmer and McKitty who will provide depth and help offset the loss of Hunter Henry this offseason.

#19. Los Angeles Rams

Grade: B-

Draft picks: Louisville WR Tutu Atwell, South Carolina LB Ernest Jones, Texas A&M DT Bobby Brown III, Central Arkansas CB Robert Rochell, UCF WR Jacob Harris, Northwestern DE Earnest Brown IV, Maryland RB Jake Funk, Notre Dame WR Ben Skowronek, Concorida-St. Paul OLB Chris Garrett

The Rams did not have a first round pick this year, and that’s why their first overall selection became extremely vital. Well, they could have done better. Adding depth at receiver is fine, but the Rams had more pressing needs at offensive line.

Additionally, following the losses of cornerback Troy Hill and safety John Johnson, the Rams could have used their earlier picks on a few defensive backs. Nevertheless, Atwell is a speedster and playmaker, and Brown helps beef up the defensive line even more.

#20. Miami Dolphins

Grade: A

Draft picks: Alabama WR Jaylen Waddle, Miami EDGE Jaelan Phillips, Oregon S Jevon Holland, Notre Dame OT Liam Eichenberg, Boston College TE Hunter Long, UMass OT Larnel Coelman, Cincinnati RB Gerrid Doaks

The decision to reunite Tua with Waddle was a strong one as Miami gets some solid depth and playmaking at the receiving core.

Further, Phillips will provide a boost to the defensive line while Holland adds to an already strong secondary that ranked first last year.

#21. Minnesota Vikings

Grade: B+

Draft picks: Virginia Tech OT Christian Darrisaw, Texas A&M QB Kellen Mond, North Carolina LB Chazz Surratt, Ohio State G Wyatt Davis, Pittsburgh DE Patrick Jones II, Iowa State RB Kene Nwangwu, California S Camryn Bynum, Florida State EDGE Janarius Robinson, Iowa WR Ihmir Smith-Marsette, Central Missouri TE Zach Davidson, Pittsburgh DT Jalen Twyman

The Vikings made the smart decision to move back in the draft while still taking the player they wanted in Darrisaw. Taking Mond also offers a backup plan, and a potential future plan, to Kirk Cousins, and in general the Vikings didn’t miss much in this draft.

Davis can help on the offensive line in multiple positions, and Jones can develop into a quality starting caliber player. Adding Smith-Marsette and Davidson also gives the Vikings some depth at pass catching positions.

#22. New England Patriots

Grade: A-

Draft picks: Alabama QB Mac Jones, Alabama DT Christian Barmore, Oklahoma EDGE Ronnie Perkins, Oklahoma RB Rhamondre Stevenson, Michigan LB Cameron McGrone, Missouri S Josuah Bledsoe, Colorado OT William Sherman, UCF WR Tre Nixon

The Patriots didn’t even have to make a move to select their quarterback of the future, and they ended up with the player who fits their scheme the best. Josh McDaniels and Belichick will be excited to groom Mac Jones as he competes with Cam for a starting job.

After focusing on receiving options in the offseason, the Pats went heavy on defensive players with Barmore, Perkins, and McGrone set to make big impacts. However, it was the Mac Jones pick that really stands out.

#23. New Orleans Saints

Grade: B-

Draft picks: Houston EDGE Payton Turner, Ohio State LB Pete Werner, Stanford CB Paulson Adebo, Notre Dame QB Ian Book, Kentucky OT Landon Young, South Alabama WR Kawaan Baker

Taking Turner in the first round was somewhat of a surprising option, but given the fact that he has high upside and great ability, this pick may very well be worth it.

Adebo and Werner also help out on the defensive side of the ball, but in order to get Adebo the Saints had to trade up, losing their compensatory pick.

#24. New York Giants

Grade: B+

Draft picks: Florida WR Kadarius Toney, Georgia EDGE Azeez Ojulari, UCF CB Aaron Robinson, Northern Iowa OLB Elerson Smith, Arizona RB Gary Brightwell, Oklahoma State CB Rodarius Wiliams

The Giants again saw an opportunity to acquire more assets by moving down, and yet they still managed to capitalize. Toney gives Daniel Jones yet another upgrade at receiving, giving him all the tools he needs to be successful this year.

Ojulari was projected to be a first round talent, and the Giants managed to snag him at 50. They also acquired yet another first rounder for next year, and all in all the Giants had a solid outing.

#25. New York Jets

Grade: A-

Draft picks: BYU QB Zach Wilson, USC G Alijah Vera-Tucker, Ole Miss WR Elijah Moore, North Carolina RB Michael Carter, Auburn S Jamien Sherwood, Duke S Michael Carter II, Pittsburgh CB Michael Pinnock, Florida State S Hamsah Nasirildeen, Kentucky CB Brandon Echols, Arkansas DT Jonathan Marshall

The Jets focus coming into the draft was on offense, and that’s exactly what they did. Zach Wilson is an exciting young prospect to lead the charge into the future for Jets, and he’s got some good weapons surrounding him too.

Moore and Carter will be great playmakers, and Vera-Tucker provides some great depth and he was solid pickup after the Jets traded up to number 14.

#26. Philadelphia Eagles

Grade: B+

Draft picks: Alabama WR DeVonta Smith, Alabama G/C Landon Dickerson, Louisiana Tech DT Milton Williams, Texas Tech CB Zech McPhearson, Memphis RB Kenneth Gainwell, DT Marlon Tuipulotu, Coastal Carolina DE Tarron Jackson, LSU S JaCoby Stevens, Tulane OLB Patrick Johnson

The Eagles made a smart decision to trade up for the services of DeVonta Smith, giving Jalen Hurts the explosive playmaker he needs to develop.

They addressed several key positions along the draft, including the selection of McPhearson. Dickerson could serve as a solid guard, and be a future prospect to replace Jason Kelce.

#27. Pittsburgh Steelers

Grade: B

Draft picks: Alabama RB Najee Harris, Penn State TE Pat Freiermuth, Illinois G/C Kendrick Green, Texas A&M OT Dan Moore Jr., Texas A&M ILB Buddy Johnson, Wisconsin DT Isiahh Loudermilk, Miami EDGE Quincy Roche, Oklahoma CB Tre Norwood, Georgia Tech P Pressley Harvin III

The Steelers picked up some home-run hitters in this draft with their selections of Freiermuth and Harris, but at the end of the day, they waited too long to pick up an offensive lineman, only doing so in the third round.

Harris will definitely help improve a rushing attack that ranked near the bottom of the league last year, but he’ll need help from Green and Moore to ensure he reaches his full potential.

#28. San Francisco 49ers

Grade: A-

Draft picks: North Dakota State QB Trey Lance, Notre Dame G Aaron Banks, Ohio State RB Trey Sermon, Michigan CB/S Ambry Thomas, Western Michigan G Jaylon Moore, Oregon CB Deommodre Lenoir, USC S Talanoa Hufanga, Louisiana RB Elijah Mitchell

The 49ers were the biggest variable in this year’s draft. After making the bold move to trade up to number 3, everyone assumed it was for one of three quarterbacks: Trey Lance, Mac Jones, or even Justin Fields.

At the end of it, the 49ers got their guy in Lance. His mobility and athleticism fits well into San Francisco’s offensive scheme and gives him high upside. Picking up Banks and Moore to shore up the offensive line were also smart decisions.

#29. Seattle Seahawks

Grade: C

Draft picks: Western Michigan WR D’Wayne Eskridge, Oklahoma CB Tre Brown, Florida OT Stone Forsythe

The Seahawks only had three picks this year, and so this grade is more of a neutral one more than anything as its hard to judge how they did.

Eskridge is a good athlete, but his skills mirror Lockett’s and they could have chosen to draft an offensive lineman to protect Russell Wilson better here.

#30. Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Grade: A-

Draft picks: Washington EDGE Joe Tryon, Florida QB Kyle Trask, Notre Dame OT/G Robert Hainsey, North Texas WR Jaelon Darden, Auburn LB K.J. Britt, BYU CB Chris Wilcox, Houston OLB Grant Stuard

The draft wasn’t nearly as important for Tampa Bay as it was for other teams because of how well the free-agency period went for them, re-signing all of their starters and snap leaders. Thus, they could take the best player available when it came to them.

Tryon gives good depth to the defensive lineman which is starting to get older, and Trask is in the perfect situation as he gets to learn under Brady.

#31. Tennessee Titans

Grade: B+

Draft picks: Virginia Tech CB Caleb Farley, North Dakota State OT Dillon Radunz, Georgia LB Monty Rice, Washington CB Elijah Molden, Louisville WR Dez Fitzpatrick, Pittsburgh EDGE Rashad Weaver, LSU WR Racey McMath, Oregon S Brady Breeze

The Titans made good on most of their picks in the draft. Taking Farley gives them a player who has tremendous talent and upside, and they picked up a solid piece in Rice who could be a day one starter.

Additionally, Fitzpatrick gives the Titans some options after Corey Davis left. Radunz also provides great depth at the offensive line position.

#32. Washington Football Team

Grade: B

Draft picks: Kentucky LB Jamin Davis, Texas OT Samuel Cosmi, Minnesota CB Benjamin St-Juste, North Carolina WR Dyami Brown, Boise State TE John Bates, Cincinnati S Darrick Forest, Michigan LS Camaron Cheeseman, Baylor OLB William Bradley-King, Penn State DE Shaka Toney, BYU WR Dax Milne

Washington continued to improve its young and physical defense by picking up Davis in the first round, and taking St-Just to add to the secondary later on.

Adding Brown to the mix gives Washington another option to throw to alongside Curtis Samuel and Terry McLaurin. WFT didn’t make any “wow” moves, but their draft was solid.

Also Read: “Ground game is back baby!!! Super Bowl!!”: Golden State Warriors guard Draymond Green was hyped after Pittsburgh Steelers drafted RB Najee Harris.

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