No division in football had a better overall showing in the 2015 NFL draft than the AFC North.
All four teams did great throughout all seven rounds at finding great value picks at positions of need. To this point, the 'experts' have been dishing out a loot of praise for all four teams, some even giving all four clubs an 'A' for their drafts.
NFL.com's Bucky Brooks graded the AFC North draft classes, and he was not as praiseworthy as most have been on the four teams. While many are giving the Browns an 'A' for their haul, Brooks gave them a respectable 'B+.'
That's also the same grade he gave the Bengals, noting how this was a draft that will cement their future rather than add instant-impact players:
After putting together one of the most talented rosters in the NFL over the past few seasons, the Bengals used the 2015 draft to further cement a foundation that should allow them to remain perennial contenders for the next five years. Offensive tackles Cedric Ogbuehi and Jake Fisher are developmental prospects poised to take over as starting bookends in the next year or two. Paul Dawson is arguably the most instinctive linebacker in the draft, but character concerns and questionable athletic traits led to his drop down the charts. If he takes care of business off the field, he could become a difference maker in the middle alongside Vontaze Burfict (who, by the way, was a very similar prospect when he went undrafted out of Arizona State). Keep an eye on receiver Mario Alford. Offensive coordinator Hue Jackson could use him as the vertical stretch playmaker who deters opponents from playing press-man on the outside.
As for the Baltimore Ravens, Brooks gave them a 'B,' but praised their class overall. Perhaps, it's because guys like Carl Davis, Buck Allen and Za'Darius Smith were great values at positions that are already set for the foreseeable future.
As for the Steelers, Brooks surprisingly gave them a 'C+,' one of the rare poor grades Pittsburgh has received from anyone. That's because, in Brooks' mind, they added several players with a lot of potential, but who could also disappointing at the NFL level:
Defensively, the Steelers plucked Alvin "Bud" Dupree to give the team a much-needed pass rusher with speed and quickness. He isn't a polished player, but has tremendous potential as a DPR (designated pass rusher). The Steelers also landed a pair of cover corners in Senquez Golson and Doran Grant. Golson, as mentioned above, is a bit of a question mark based on his diminutive physical dimensions -- in addition to potentially struggling against bigger-bodied receivers, he could have some trouble against the run. Receiver Sammie Coates is a "boom or bust" prospect with enticing physical tools who needs to develop better consistency as a pass catcher.