KansasCity comes up big
Dorsey only part of the good fortune for Chiefs
By Rick Gosselin
The Dallas Morning News
Cardinals — B
The Cardinals needed to address their pass defense, which ranked 28th in the NFL last season. CB Rogers-Cromartie was a steal at 16 and defensive ends Campbell, Iwebema and Harrington can help dial up the heat up front.
Falcons — B
The Falcons gave their fans hope — and also slammed the book shut on the Michael Vick era — by drafting Ryan at 3. Atlanta had the best third round of this draft with two DBs for the 23rd-ranked pass defense and WR Douglas.
Ravens — C
The Ravens needed a quarterback and probably overextended for Flacco. New head coach John Harbaugh didn’t forget his special teams roots when he drafted safeties Zbikowski and Nakamura and WR Smith.
Bills — C
The Bills came away with the best cornerback and best kick returner in the draft, and it’s the same player — CB McKelvin. WR Hardy gives the Bills a huge target in the red zone. He’s a great complement for speedy WR Lee Evans.
Panthers — B
The Panthers had the best seventh round, landing a pass rusher in Taylor and two blockers in Bernadeau and Schwartz. Getting OT Otah and RB Stewart in the first round will help the Panthers re-establish the running game.
Bears — A
The Bears subscribe to the big-school drafting philosophy and found quality throughout the draft. WR Bennett in the third, S Steltz in the fourth, CB Bowman in the fifth and WR Monk in the seventh were all value picks.
Bengals — C
The Bengals were the one team that did not shy away from character players (once again). LB Rivers and S Lynch have impeccable character and will be the face of this draft class. DTs Sims and Shirley can be boom or bust.
Browns — C
The Browns did remarkably well for not having a pick in the first four rounds. MLB Bell could have an impact as a rookie in the NFL’s 27th-ranked run defense, and Hubbard and Rucker can help diversify the passing attack.
Cowboys — B
The Cowboys were cruising along with a great draft until reaching for LB Walden in the sixth. RB Choice in the fourth and CB Scandrick in the fifth were superb second-day selections. RB Jones will be a boon to the special teams.
Broncos — C
Denver needed help for its defense, which ranked 19th in the league last season. But coach Mike Shanahan is an offensive genius, so the Broncos used their first three picks to bolster the league’s 11th-ranked offense.
The Lions wanted to make this a defensive draft and selected three potential starters in the first three rounds. But their offense, the NFL’s worst last season, may benefit even more from the arrival of OT Cherilus and RB Smith.
Packers — B
The Packers traded out of the first round and then turned in the best second round of the draft. Brohm gives them insurance for Aaron Rodgers, Lee gives them another big corner, and Nelson is a big-body, big-play receiver.
Texans — C
Desperate for an offensive tackle, the Texans reached deep into the first round to claim Virginia Tech’s Duane Brown with the 26th overall selection. Molden could be the home run of this draft if the Texans show patience for two years.
Colts — C
There were six quality centers in this draft, and the Colts claimed three of them: Pollak, Justice and Richard. Those three will also work as guards. Indy had the best sixth round, adding Justice, RB Hart and TE Santi.
Jags — C
There were four elite pass rushers in this draft, and the Jaguars came away with two of them, DEs Harvey and Groves. Southern Cal alum Jack Del Rio stayed true to his school by drafting LB Williams and RB Washington late.
Chiefs — A+
The good fortune began when Outland Trophy-winning DT Glenn Dorsey slid to them at five. The Chiefs drafted seven players who had third-round grades or better. A quantity draft (12 picks) quickly evolved into a quality draft.
Dolphins — C
Chad Henne and Jake Long helped take Michigan to four consecutive bowls. The Dolphins are hoping they can continue working their bowl magic in South Florida. DE Philip Merling has the size up front that Bill Parcells likes.
Vikings — C
The Vikings sent their first- and third-round picks to Kansas City in the deal for NFL sack leader Jared Allen, which slowed this draft down. But getting S Johnson at No. 43 was a bargain, and Booty provides insurance at quarterback.
Pats — C
The Patriots have a different draft board than most, targeting specific skills and WR Jackson and S Demps should have immediate impacts on special teams.
Steelers — C
Mendenhall was the steal of the draft at No. 23. Teaming with Willie Parker, the Steelers will have two offensive speeds — fast and faster. The play-action game will never be better. QB Dixon has Slash-like potential.
Rams — A
Long will be a great complement up front to last year’s top pick by the Rams, Adam Carriker. They will be two of the highest motor defensive linemen in the league. Avery and Burton inject fast legs into an aging receiving corps.
Chargers — C
Cason replaces free-agenct defector Drayton Florence in San Diego’s cornerback rotation, and FB Hester was arguably the highest character player in this draft. He was an investment in the future success of LaDainian Tomlinson.
49ers — C
The 49ers didn’t have many picks but smartly took the value as it arrived up on the draft board. Balmer, Rachal and Wallace will make the 49ers more formidable up front and Morgan could be a real find in the sixth with his speed.
Seahawks — C
The Seahawks took a kicker and a deep snapper to bolster the NFL’s 14th-ranked special teams unit. Jackson adds size on defense, and Carlson will give QB Matt Hasselbeck a dependable underneath receiver.
Bucs — C
The Bucs made one of the biggest reaches of the draft, taking WR Dexter Jackson in the second round. He projected as a fifth-rounder. But GM Bruce Allen recovered nicely in the second day with Moore, Johnson, Hayes and Boyd.
Titans — B
The Titans needed offensive speed and landed the fastest player in this draft in RB Johnson. Tennessee had the best fourth round of the draft, taking big school producers Hawkins and Kegler and small-school riser Hayes.
Redskins — C
New coach Jim Zorn can build the offense to his liking with the first-day selections of two wide receivers and a tight end. Thomas, Davis and Kelly all had first-round grades, and the Redskins found them all in the second.