Every year there are draft steals. 2022 was no different. While the Falcons didn’t necessarily find their Grady Jarrett 2.0 steal, they fared far better than I imagined.
I thought it would be interesting to look at the draft in hindsight. What if the Falcons truly picked BPA throughout? Would that surpass their own judgment or not?
Some of the Draft Steals per Bleacher Report:
· iOL Lecitus Smith (AZ 215/BR#81)
· QB Desmond Ridder (ATL 74 / BR#17)
· EDGE David Ojabo (BAL 45 / BR#40-Top15)
· WR Khalil Shakir (BUF 148 / BR#43)
· OG Cade Mays (CAR 199 / BR#121)
· LB Damone Clark (DAL 176 / BR#96-Top50)
· OT Rasheed Walker (GB 249 / BR#79)
· OT/OG Bernhard Raimann (IND 77 / BR#28)
· EDGE George Karlaftis (KC 30 / BR#8)
· iOL Jamaree Salyer (LAC 195 / BR#69)
· CB Andrew Booth (MN 42 / BR#24)
· ILB Nakobe Dean (PHI 83 / BR#21)
· CB Coby Bryant (SEA 109 / BR#63)
NOTE: Each player’s actual draft spot versus Bleacher Report’s Board ranking.
Here was the draft re-do using BPA unless the player's position was already drafted:
1P8 SS Kyle Hamilton (BR#2)
2P43 EDGE David Ojabo (BR#Top-15 before injury)
2P58 NT Travis Jones (BR#40)
3P74 QB Desmond Ridder (BR#17)
3P82 ILB Nakobe Dean (BR#21)
4P113 WR Khalil Shakir (BR#43)
5P151 RB Tyler Allgeier (BR#38)
6P190 OG Jamaree Salyer (BR#69)
6P213 OT Rasheed Walker (BR#79)
This draft does provide some gems and better skills for the O-line, but I can’t objectively say that it is better overall than the Falcons’ choices. Two of them are actually the same, Ridder and Allgeier.