GREAT BLUE NORTH DRAFT REPORT
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    2010 DRAFT MID-SEASON REPORT CARD

    Top 10 offensive rookies
    #
    Player Pos Team
    Rd
    1
    Maurkice Pouncey C Pittsburgh
    1
    2
    San Bradford QB St. Louis
    1
    3
    Russell Okung OT Seattle
    1
    4
    Mike Williams WR Tampa Bay
    4
    5
    Dez Bryant WR Dallas
    1
    6
    J'Marcus Webb OT
    Chicago 7
    7
    Aaron Hernandez TE New England
    4
    8
    Jared Veldheer OT Oakland
    3
    9
    Tony Moeaki TE Kansas City
    3
    10
    Rodger Saffold OT St. Louis
    2
    Honorable mention: Cleveland QB Colt McCoy (3); Detroit RB Jahvid Best (1); Kansas City RB/WR/KR Dexter McCluster (2);
    Cincinnati WR Jordan Shipley (3); Tennessee KR Marc Mariani (7); Washington KR Brandon Banks (U)

    Top 10 defensive rookies
    #
    Player Pos Team
    Rd
    1
    Ndamukong Suh DT Nebraska
    1
    2
    T.J. Ward DB Cleveland
    2
    3
    Nate Allen FS Philadelphia
    2
    4
    Alterraun Verner CB Tennessee
    4
    5
    Eric Berry SS Kansas City
    1
    6
    Earl Thomas FS Seattle
    1
    7
    Koa Misi LB Miami
    2
    8
    Cody Grimm DB Tampa Bay
    7
    9
    Rolando McClain LB Oakland
    1
    10
    Devin McCourty CB New England
    1
    Honorable mention: Tampa Bay DT Gerald McCoy (1); Jacksonville DE Tyson Aluala (1); Arizona LB Daryl Washington (2);
    Atlanta LB Sean Weatherspoon (1); Indianapolis LB Pat Angerer (2); Cleveland CB Joe Haden (1)

    Best picks by round
    Rd
    Player Pos Team
    1
    Maurkice Pouncey C Pittsburgh
    2
    T.J. Ward DB Cleveland
    3
    Colt McCoy QB Cleveland
    4
    Mike Williams WR Tampa Bay
    5
    Zoltan Mesko P New England
    6
    David Gettis WR Carolina
    7
    J'Marcus Webb OT
    Chicago
    FA
    LaGarrette Blount RB Tampa Bay

    Team-by-team Draft Grades

    (Ed note: As it can take up to 2-3 years for a draft class to fully develop, these are obviously still very preliminary grades, and very little should be made of them at this point. Also note that reported stats are those through 8 games although some teams have played 9.)

TAMPA BAY: The Buccaneers have been one of the NFL's big surprises of the first half of the season as Tampa Bay has hung with Atlanta and New Orleans at the top of the NFC South standings. And one of the big factors in the resurgence of the franchise has been the play of a number of first-year players; that despite the fact that DT Brian Price, the Bucs' second round pick this year barely played before going on IR with a pelvis injury. WR Mike Williams, Tampa Bay's 4th round pick this year, though. looks like a major draft-day steal. Williams leads the Bucs in receiving with 36 catches for 560 yards and 5 TDs; in fact, Williams has outplayed the more heralded Arrelious Benn, the team's other second round pick this year, although Benn has big catches in each of the past couple of weeks. Meanwhile, DT Gerald McCoy, the third player taken overall this past April, hasn't put up big numbers - he's still looking for his pro sack - but has done a nice job clogging up the middle of the defensive front and has at least goten into the backfield with 4 tackles for loss. The Bucs also have something of a steal in SS Cody Grimm, an unheralded 7th round pick who has 42 tackles as well as 2 picks. And undrafted rookie free agent RB LaGarrette Blount has emerged as the team's feature back rushing for 236 yards over the past three weeks. The Bucs have also gotten a most unexpected contribution from undrafted rookie P Robert Malone who took over punting duties in the 5th week of the season and has a net average of 38 yards per punt and has put almost half hs kicks inside opponents' 20-yard line. Mid-season grade: A

NEW ENGLAND: The Patriots are back in the thick of the race for the AFC title with more than just a little help from their 2010 rookie class. CB Devin McCourty, the team's #1 pick this year, for example, has been more than solid since moving into the starting lineup, posting 33 tackles, along with 2 interceptions and 5 other pass breakups. In fact, the rebuilt New England starts as many as 4 rookies with second rounder Brandon Spikes lining up next to Jerod Mayo at ILB, while Jermaine Cunningham, another second rounder from Florida, mans one OLB and former Alabama DE  Brandon Deaderick holds down one of the DE positions. For the record, Spikes is among the rookie leaders league-wide with 47 tackles, while Cunningham has a sack, 3 other tackles for loss and a forced fumble and Deaderick a pair of sacks, although the lack of consistent pass rush could be the Patriots' Achilles heel heading into the second half of the season. Meanwhile, the Patriots could have a real steal in TE Aaron Hernandez, the team's 4th round pick. Hernandez, the 3rd former Gator drafted last April by New England, leads the team in receiving with 34 catches for 436 yards and two scores, while TE Rob Gronkowski, yet another 2nd round pick from the 2010 draft, has 14 catches and 3 scores. At the same time, P Zoltan Mesko, taken in the 5th round, is in the top 10 in the NFL in net punting yardage. And it can only get better down the road for the Patriots who have seven picks in the first four rounds of the 2011 draft, including two in the opening round. Mid-season grade: A

KANSAS CITY: It has taken some time, but the Chiefs appear to have finally turned a corner as the perennial doormats lead the AFC West through the first half of the season thanks in part to some solid contributions from their 2010 rookie class. Safety Eric Berry, the 5th player taken at this year's draft, for example, has come close to matching the hype. Berry's been caught out of position on occasion, but for the most part been's around the ball all over the field; Berry is third on the team with 45 tackles, including a couple of sacks, while picking off a couple of passes and breaking up two others; for good measure, Berry also forced a fumble. Meanwhile, WR/RB/KR Dexter McCluster and CB Javier Arenas, the Chiefs' two second round picks this year, have provided the return game with an infusion of eal speed and quickness. McCluster, in particular, has 600 yards of total offense and has a TD rushing, receiving and on a 94-yard punt return. Arenas hasn't been quite as dynamic, but has also contributed in nickle situations where he has 17 tackles and 4 pass break-ups. Same story for safety Kendrick Lewis who 11 tackles and 3 knockdowns of his own. The Chiefs' best pick thios year, though, may have been TE Tony Moeaki, a 3rd round selection who has emerged as a quality go-to receiver with 30 catches including two for scores. Meanwhile, undrafted Canadian rookie free agent LB Cory Greenwood has played well on special teams. Mid-season grade: A

ST. LOUIS: Taking a QB with the top pick overall is always a gamble, but the Rams look like they have hit thre jackpot with Sam Bradford, who has easily been the rookie with the most impact in the league to date. Bradford has thrown for almost 1,700 yards to date while completing 59% of his pass attempts including 11 for TDs while throwing 8 interceptions. More importanly, Bradford has shown the poise of a veteran in leading the resurgent Rams to a 4-4 record and in the hunt in the NFC West. Bradford has been joined in the Rams' starting line-up by second rounder Rodger Saffold who has had some rough moments at times at LT, but for the most part has solidified that key spot in St. Louis. The Rams also think they may have a real steal in undrafted rookie WR Danario Alexander who had a 38-yard TD reception in the first game he played, but he's out again with a knee problem; and that's a concern because Alexander has had a slew of knee injuries in his career. Meanwhile, 3rd round CB Jerome Murphy has contributed 18 tackles and a pick as a situational corner. At the same time, WR Mardy Gilyard (4th round), TEs Michael Hoomanawanui (5th) and Fendi Onobun (6th) and 7th round DE George Selvie have all played some minutes with Gilyard doing a nice job as the team's primary KO returner, while Selvie has chipped in a sack and a half as a situational pass rusher. Mid-season grade: A

CLEVELAND: Whether or not he ultimately is 'the' answer at QB for the Browns, Colt McCoy has given the team  a real boost after taking over as the starter the past three weeks. Indeed, McCoy, a 3rd round pick this past April, did what he did at Texas and that's put up 'Ws' as the Browns won two of the three. And there were no cupcakes for McCoy to feast on as his three starts came against Pittsburgh, New Orleans and New England with the wins coming in the latter two. McCoy likely will never have the arm strength to consistently get the ball down field, but is a very accurate passer - he's completed 68% of his throws to date - who moves well and can throw on the run. For good measure, the Browns also boast one of the year's best rookie defenders in safety T.J. Ward, a second rounder who has racked up 67 tackles to lead all rookies - by a country mile - although he hasn't made all that many plays with the ball in the air. Meanwhile, CB Joe Haden, the 7th player taken this past April, has done a nice job in nickle situations where he has 23 tackles, a pick and 4 other pass break-ups. Those three are the only Browns' rookies, though, to play much at all to date. Mid-season grade: A

DETROIT: Trust us, one of these days it is going to pay off, but for now the fact that the Lions have put together a second straight strong rookie class remains mostly a smidgen of light at the end of the proverbial football tunnel for Detroit which has been close all season, but still has found new and frustrating ways to lose. After adding QB Matt Stafford, TE Brandon Pettigrew and S Louis Delmas among others at the 2009 draft, Detroit has easily the top defensive rookie in the league, and arguably the best overall player period, in DT Ndamukong Suh, the second player picked overall this past April, has been unblockable at times and leads all NFL DTs with 6.5 sacks while posting 30 tackles; Suh also has a pick and returned a fumble for a TD. And just for good measure, the one-time soccer player is the team's back-up PK, although he missed his only attempt at a PAT. Meanwhile, RB Jahvid Best, the Lions' other first-round pick this year, has just over 700 yards from scrimmage, although he's been a better receiver than rusher to date; indeed, he's only averaged 3.2 yards per carry through the first half of the campaign. DB Amari Spievey, a 3rd rounder this year, has also worked his way into the starting line-up in recent weeks, but has yet to make many plays, while undrafted rookie free agent CB Aaron Berry has an interception in limited snaps. Mid-season grade: A-

OAKLAND: Its been something of a work in progress but the Raiders appear to have finally gotten back on track in the AFC West with just a little help from their 2010 draft class. MLB Rolando McClain, the 8th player taken this past April, for example, has played just about every snap through the first half of the campaign, in the process racking up 40 tackles while chipping in 3 pass break-ups. Even more important perhaps is the fact that McClain has quickly emerged as the QB of the defense and has the confidence of the coaches to make the right calls. Meanwhile, DT Lamarr Houston, the Raiders' second-round selection, has been solid enough working enough working slightly out of position at RDE where he has a couple of sacks. The most pleasant surprise of the Oakland rookie class, though, has been the emergence of 3rd round OT Jared Veldheer as a competent starting LT. On the other hand, WR Jacoby Ford and OT Bruce Campbell, a pair of fourth-round picks, along with CBs Walter McFadden (5th) and Jeremy Ware (7th) have only played sparingly. Mid-season grade: A-

SEATTLE: Its been and up-and-down season for the Seahawks who lost their last two games by a combined score of 71-10, but still find themselves tied for the division lead. The Seahawks also appear to have at least a couple of portential future stars as both their two opening round picks, OT Russell Okung and FS Earl Thomas, the 6th and 14th players selected in this year's opening round respectively, have come as advertised. Okung, for example, has played like a veteran shut-down LT through the first half of the season, although a nasty ankle injury has kept him sidelined in recent weeks. Meanwhile, Thomas has emerged as a ball-hawking safety with 4 picks to date, although he's also been burned on occasion. CB Walter Thurmond and SS Kam Chancellor, who were taken in the 4th and 5th rounds respectively, have also played extensive minutes. That's the good news; the bad news is that they along with Thomas are part of a youthful Seahawks' secondary that ranks 30th overall in the NFL in passing yardage allowed. On the other hand, WR Golden Tate, the team's second rounder, has only 10 catches to date, while 6th round TE Anthony McCoy has none, despite the fact the Seahawks need receivers to step up. The fact that Tate has also been slowed by an ankle injury, though, hasn't helped his development.  Mid-season grade: B+

PITTSBURGH:  The Steelers just keep rolling along and anyone looking for a reason just needs to check out C Maurkice Pouncey whom Pittsburgh selected with the 18th pick at the 2010 draft. Center isn't usually a prime draft  position and the Steelers had other needs, but the former Florida star was just too good a talent to pass on at that point. And the Steelers have been rewarded as Pouncey has played at a Pro Bowl type level since day one. Pouncey, though, is the only Steelers' rookie to play a major role, although WRs Emmanuel Sanders and Antonio Brown, the team's 3rd and 6th round pcks respectively, have been outstanding returning KOs. Sanders has averaged over 26 yards per return, while Brown has been even better averaging over 30 yards per pop which included one he returned for a score. On the other hand, second round OLB Jason Worilds has only 8 tackles to date, although he does have a sack, while 5th round CB Crezdon Butler has yet to be activated. Note though that the Steelers have had a lot of success in the past by bringing along high picks slowly. Just to prove that they are human, though, the Steelers did lose OLB Thaddeus Gibson, the team's 4th round pick this past April, when he was claimed by San Francisco after being released to clear a roster spot. Mid-season grade: B+

PHILADELPHIA: With a total of 13 selections, the Eagles had the most picks of any team at the 2010 draft. And with an even dozen rookies on the roster at the start of the campaign, the Eagles had more first-year players than every team except St. Louis. Philadelphia has also played more young players than any other team in the league. FS Nate Allen, the Eagles' second round pick this year, though, is the team's only rookie to have made a major impact to date. Allen, the 37th player taken this past April has 34 tackles to date including a sack, while he's picked off three passes and knocked down three others. DE Brandon Graham, whom the Eagles traded up to the 13th pick in the opening round to snare, also looked the part early in the season, but has been slowed to a virtual stop by an ankle injury and non-football related infection that helped limit the former Michigan star to just 7 tackles and a couple of sacks through the first half of the season. Meanwhile, CB Jorick Calvin, a 6th round pick by Arizona whom the Eagles claimed on waivers has done a nice job returning kicks especially with DeSean Jackson ailing. At the same time, CB Trevard Lindley (4th), WR Riley Cooper (5th), FS Kurt Coleman and LB Jamar Chaney (7th) have played limited situational minutes, with Lindley chipping in a pick, while Coleman has 14 tackles. Mid-season grade: B+

TENNESSEE:
The Titans' rookie class took a hit when DE Derrick Morgan, whom the team chose with the 16th pick in this year's first round, tore an ACL and was lost for the rest of the year; that was after Morgan got off to a good start posting 1.5 sacks in his first two games. Even without Morgan, though, the Titans have received some solid contributions from their current rookie crop. CB Alterraun Verner, a 4th round pick, for example, has emerged as one of the NFL's better first-year DBs posting 37 tackles, along with 2 picks and 6 other pass break-ups; for good measure, the opportunistic Verner has also recovered a couple of fumbles. At the same time, second-round WR Damian Williams has emerged as a decent slot receiver catching 11 passes in the past 4 weeks. Meanwhile, WR Marc Mariani, an unheralded 7th rounder from Montana, is in the league's top 10 in both KO (26.6) and punt (10.9) return averages.  Mid-season grade: B+

SAN FRANCISCO: The 49ers were one of the NFL's most disappointing teams through the first half of the season, although it would probably be a stretch to put too much of the blame on RT Anthony Davis and LG Mike Iupati, the team's two opening round picks who have both started all season. Both have had issues in pass protection and with penalties, but both have also been more than solid run blocking. And while starting a couple of rookies on the offensive line will always be a gamble, especially for a team that thought of itself as a contender entering the season, it is also the kind of move that can pay off down the road. Meanwhile, SS Taylor Mays and ILB Navorro Bowman, the 49ers' 2nd and 3rd round picks respectively, also start and have been phyisical enough defending the run, but have been exposed in coverage. At the same time, 6th rounders RB Anthony Dixon and TE Nate Byham have seen only limited action. Mid-season grade: B

CINCINNATI: The big news for the Bengals in the off-season was the acquisition of WR Terrell Owens to line-up opposite Chad Ochocinco, but the Cincinnai offense has also gotten a boost with the emergence of TE Jermaine Gresham and WR Jordan Shipley, the team's 1st and 3rd round picks respectively at the 2010 draft, as decent complimentary receivers. Shipley, in particular, has emerged as a solid 3rd down slot receiver who can get upfield and has caught 28 passes for almost 400 yards and a score. Same story for Gresham who has 31 receptions including two for TDs, although he probably needs to be a little more aggressive when the ball is in the air. The rest of the Bengals' draft, which focused almost exclusively on the defense, though, has been something of a washout. Indeed, second round DT Carlos Dunlap, 3rd round CB Brandon Ghee, and DT Geno Atkins and OLB Rodderick Muckleroy, a pair of 4th rounders, have contributed a total of just 16 tackles between them, although Muckleroy has forced a couple of fumbles, while Atkins had a half sack.  Mid-season grade: B-

ARIZONA: The Cardinals thought they had hit the proverbial draft jackpot when big NT Dan Williams, one of the hot prospects at the 2010 draft, was still on the board when they made their first round pick, the 26th overall. The Cardinals wasted little time grabbing the former Tennessee star, but are still waiting for the big return. Williams has done a decent enough job holding the point of attack as part of the Cardinals' DT rotation registering 14 tackles, but has struggled to get into the backfield and has yet to record any impact plays. Like Williams, LB Daryl Washington, the Cardinals' second rounder, isn't a nominal starter, but he's been an even more useful; indeed, the athletic Washington is among the league leaders in rookie tackles with 46 including a sack, but he has yet to show much in coverage. The Cardinals also briefly held out hope that undrafted rookie free agent QB Max Hall might be the answer at the position in the wake of the retirement of Kurt Warner and gave him several starts, but that experiment became something of a bust as Hall completed barely half his pass attempts while throwing 5 picks against just one TD throw. There was also a good news, bad news angle to the fact that WR Andre Roberts is 4th on the Cardinals in receiving yards.That's the good part; the bad is that Roberts still has less than 100 total receiving yards on 6 total receptions. The Cardinals search for some solid complimentary receivers also extended to undrafted rookie wideouts Stephen Williams and Max Komar, who had 7 and 6 receptions, respectively. Mid-season grade: B-

MIAMI: The Dolphins' rookie class took a major hit when DE Jared Odrick, the team's #1 pick this year, broke his leg in the season opener and went on IR. Miami's second rounder, OLB Koa Misi, though, has been able to pick up some of the slack showing a nice burst off the edge enroute to 3.5 sacks through the first half of the season; Misi also has 21 total tackles. Miami has also been happy with the play of 3rd round OG John Jerry who has started pretty much from day, although he did miss several games with a non-football illness. On the other hand, the Dolphins' have gotten very little to date from their mid-round picks. LB A.J. Edds, the team's 4th round selection, went on IR during training camp, while 5th round DBs Nolan Carroll and Reshad Jones have a combined 3 tackles on the season. Undrafted rookie free agent WR Roberto Wallace, though, has a couple of receptions and also has made an impact on special teams. Mid-season grade: C+

DALLAS: There have been times in recent weeks when it appeared that WR Dez Bryant, the 24th player taken in this year's opening round, was the only Cowboy out there who still cared. Through the first half of the season, Bryant has caught 38 passes including 4 for scores, while he's also averaged 14.3 yards per try returning punts, two of which he has brought back for TDs. Bryant, though, has been the only Cowboys' rookie to make much of an impact to date, although a lot have gotten at least a few snaps. LB Sean Lee, the Cowboys' #2 pick this year, for example, has bided his time on the bench behind the team's veteran ILBs, while 4th round CB Akwasi Owusu-Ansah has been adequate running back KOs, but has only 1 tackle from scrimmage and will spend the rest of the year on IR. At the same time, DE Sean Lissemore, a 7th round pick this year, has a half sack, while DT Josh Brent, who was taken in the supplemental draft with a 2011 7th rounder, has contributed some useful minutes at NT where he has 11 tackles. The Cowboys have also used a number of undrafted  rookies including S Danny McCray who has a pick. Unfortunately, undrafted rookie FB Chris Gronkowski may have been involved in the most consequential play for the Cowboys this fall when his mis-read on a block resulted in QB Tony Romo's season-ending injury. Mid-season grade: C+

DENVER: The Broncos made one of the big splashes at the 2010 draft when they moved up into the latter part of the opening round in order to take former Florida QB Tim Tebow with the 25th pick overall. The results, though, have been somewhat mixed. Of course, no one expected Tebow, arguably one of the best college players of all time, but a somewhat suspect pro prospect because of his unusual passing mechanics, to take the NFL by storm. In fact, Tebow has yet to throw a pass in the NFL, but the fact that he has averaged less than 3 yards per carry when running on occasion out of a wildcat formation has to be somewhat disconcernting in Denver. At the same time, WR Demaryius Thomas, the Broncos' other first-round pick this past April, has been solid enough as a situational receiver catching 16 passes included 2 for scores; Thomas has also been solid returning KOs. The Broncos are also starting Zane Beadles and J.D. Walton, the team's second and third round picks respectively at RT and C, however, again with mixed results as they are part of an offensive front that is very much a work in progress. Meanwhile, CB Perrish Cox, a 5th round pick, has done a nice job as the team's nickel back, posting 26 tackles and a pick, while 7th round CB Syd'Quan Thompson also has a pick, although he doesn't play anywhere near as much. Mid-season grade: C+

ATLANTA: For the second straight year, Atlanta's #1 pick has had injury issues to deal with. Last year, for example, DT Peria Jerry was lost for the season with a knee injury suffered the second week of the schedule and really still isn't back to 100%. At least LB Sean Weatherspoon, whom the Falcons grabbed with the 19th pick overall this past April will be back in the lineup sooner rather than later after he missed four games with a sprained knee and ankle problem. Prior to the injury, though, Weatherspoon looked like the real deal at WLB as he averaged 8 tackles per game including a sack and pass break-up. Meanwhile, DT Corey Peters, the Falcons' 3rd rounder, has been a solid contributor to the team's DT rotation, while 5th round CB Dominique Franks has a pick but has played little otherwise. In fact, no other Falcons' rookie has played much at all other than Weatherpsoon and Peters. Mid-season grade: C+

HOUSTON: The Texans have taken a step back this season, or at least a step sideways, after a quick start. In the process, they haven't gotten much help from their 2010 rookie class. CB Kareem Jackson, whom Houston took - soemwhat surprisingly - with the 20th pick overall, has started all year and has posted decent numbers, including 32 tackles, two picks and 5 other pass break-ups, but he's also been burned on more than one occasion. Meanwhile, DT Earl Mitchell, Houston's 3rd round pick, has contributed some useful minutes to the DT rotation, although he's been slowed by an ankle injury in recent weeks; Mitchell, who has 14 tackles, but no big plays, though, is the only Houston rookie other than Jackson to play on any kind of regular basis, although 5th round CB Sherrick McManis does have a pick. Of course, it hasn't helped the Texans' cause that RB Ben Tate, the team's second round pick this year, will spend the entire year on IR after being injured in training camp. Mid-season grade: C+

JACKSONVILLE: More than a few eyebrows were raised when the Jaguars, a struggling franchise that really needed to make a splash, selected California DE Tyson Aluala with the 9th pick at the 2010 draft. Many observers had considered Aluala to be a prospect on the rise prior to the draft, but no one had him rated anywhere near that high. Aluala, though, has been solid enough with the Jaguars so far this fall posting 23 tackles including 2.5 sacks. Meanwhile, 3rd round DE Larry Hart also has a sack, but that's been his only stat for the year. On the other hand, unheralded 6th round RB Deji Karim has emerged as the #2 back behind Maurice Drew-Jones, although he has averaged less than 4 yards per carry; Karim, though, has done better as a KO returner averaging 25 yards per pop. Mid-season grade: C+

GREEN BAY: OT Bryan Bulaga, the Packers' fist-round pick at the 2010 draft has proven, if nothing else to be versatile as he has been the team's first option off the bench at every position along the offensive line except center. And with the front line banged up, Bulaga has seen plenty of action of action and has done little to disappoint to date. DT Mike Neal, the Packers' second rounder also showed some early promise coming off the bench, but will miss the rest of the season with a shoulder injury, while FS Morgan Burnett, a 3rd rounder, is done for the year with a torn ACL. In fact, none of the Packers' 2010 rookie class is a nominal starter, although Green Bay has received some useful situational contributions from TE Andrew Quarless, who has 7 receptions, including one for a score, while both DE C.J. Wilson, a 7th rounder and undrafted rookie free agent LB Frank Zombo have played a lot of snaps with Wilson posting 16 tackles and Zombo chipping in  a couple of sacks. Mid-season grade: C+

CHICAGO: The Bears probably weren't expecting much from their 2010 draft after trading away their top two picks, but still have to be disappointed in just how little productivity they have received. Indeed, safety Major Wright, DE Corey Wootton and CB Josh Moore, the Bears' 3rd through 5th round picks respectively, have all of one tackle between them and that was an assist by Wootton. Wright, though, missed extensive playing time with a hamstring problem, while Wootton had knee and neck issues coming out of the draft. The saving grace for the Bears' draft has been the emergence of OT J'Marcus Webb, a 7th round pick, as a more than solid RT who looks like he could anchor the unit for the next decade. Mid-season grade: C

WASHINGTON: The Redskins threw OT Trent Williams, the 4th player taken oveall at the 2010 draft, into the fire from day one, however, with somewhat mixed results. Williams, who has been slowed by knee and toe injuries, has been strong enough at the point of attack, but has struggled handling outside speed rushers and is giving up close a sack a game and has been flagged three times for holding. Williams, though, is the only rookie to be listed as a starter for the Redskins this season, although undrafted rookie free agent KR Brandon Banks has given the return game a real boost; indeed, Banks ranks 3rd in the league in punt returns and 7th in KO returns. At the same time, RB Keiland Williams, another undrafted rookie free agent has contributed as a 3rd down back. Mid-season grade: C

INDIANAPOLIS: The mantra in Indianapolis this year has been 'next man up' as the injury-riddled Colts try stay competitive in the tough AFC South. And that could mean added pressure on the team's rookie class which will be asked to carry a much bigger load over the second half of the season. That was the case early on for second round LB Pat Angerer, who was only expected to be a back-up and special teamer this fall, but with injuries to starters Phillip Wheeler and Gary Brackett, Angerer found himself the team's starting MLB. Angerer still struggles when forced to take on big blockers at the point of attack, but when free to run to the ball, does just that as he has recorded 30 tackles to date, most in the past three weeks; that inlcuded a sack and a forced fumble as well as a pass breakup. In fact, Angerer is the only Colts' rookie to have played much to date, but one who could see a lot of action the final two months of the season is undrafted rookie WR Blair White, who has just 9 catches to date this season, but will be asked to help replace injured regulars Austin Collie, Pierre Garcon and Anthony Gonzales. Same for RB Javarris James, another undrafted rookie free agent, who could get additional carries over the next few weeks. Don't expect to see that much of DE Jerry Hughes, the Colts' surprise #1 pick this past April who had just one tackle through the first half of the season, though, unless either of incumbent starters Dwight Freeney or Robert Mathis are injured. Mid-season grade: C

NEW ORLEANS: The defending Super Bowl champs weren't expecting much from their current draft class, but injuries have forced a couple of rookies into the lineup. CB Patrick Robinson, the final player taken in this year's opening round, ended up starting 5 games through the first half of the season and held up okay, although the Saints would like to see a few more plays when the ball is in the air. Robinson has 19 tackles to date, but has no picks and just three pass break-ups. Meanwhile, undrafted rookie free agent RB Chris Ivory from unheralded Tiffin, has been the Saints' feature back much of the year. Ivory has averaged 5 yards per carry and is at least among the rookie leaders this fall, but has been somewhat inconsistent to date. TE Jimmy Graham, a 3rd round pick has also played some, whereas rookie offensive linemen OT Charles Brown and C Matt Tennant, second and fifth round picks respectively, have not played. Mid-season grade: C

NEW YORK JETS: With just 4 picks at the 2010 draft, the Jets weren't expecting a whole lot from their rookie class; and that's about what they've gotten through the first half of the season. CB Kyle Wilson, the Jets top pick this year, did see extensive playing time early in the year with All-Pro CB Darrelle Revis out of the line-up, but with Revis back has gone back to the bench. Meanwhile, FB John Conner has done a nice job sharing the blocking chores with veteran Tony Richardson, but has only one touch to date. There is a similar story for RB Joe McKnight, the Jets' 4th round pick, who has only been activated for one game so far this season. Mid-season grade: C
    SAN DIEGO: RB Ryan Mathews, whom the Chargers traded up to grab with the 12th pick overall at the 2010 draft, is among the rookie rushing leaders this fall with 340 yards and is averaging a respectable 4.4 yards per carry, but still has a long way to go to really replace LaDainian Tomlinson. Indeed, Mathews isn't even leading the Chargers in rushing. Meanwhile, neither of FS Darrell Stuckey nor NT Cam Thomas, 4th and 5th round picks respectively this past spring, have played much at all to date, while 3rd round ILB Donald Butler went on IR prior to the season. The Chargers, though, may have a keeper in undrafted rookie freeagent WR Seyi Ajirotutu who spent most of the early part of the season on the practice squad, but had nine catches for 185 yards in three games after being promoted to the 53-man roster including a 2-TD day in the Chargers' 9th game. Mid-season grade: C-

CAROLINA: This could get ugly as the 1-7 Panthers will have to go the second half of the season with rookies - either Jimmy Clausen or Tony Pike - at QB after starter Matt Moore was lost for the season with a torn labrum. And unfortunately neither Clausen nor Pike has shown much reason or optimism so far this season. Clausen, whom the Panthers took in the second round completed just 47% of his first half pass attempts while throwing 4 picks against just one TD. Indeed, Pike may ultimately be the better option, although he also completed barely 50% of his throws in limited playing time. Whoever ultimately ends up with the job, though, will look to a couple of rookie WRs in Brandon LaFell and David Gettis to complement star wideout Steve Smith. Gettis, a 6th round steal, is currently second on the team with 20 receptions, including two for scores, while LaFell is third with 17. The Panthers have also received some useful minutes from CB Jordan Pugh and DE Greg Hardy, two more 6th rounders who have a pick and a sack respectively. The Panthers grade, though, also takes a hit after the team traded away its first round pick in 2010 in order to move up in the second round of the 2009 draft to take DE Everette Brown who has all of 2.5 sacks - none this year - in a season and a half. Ouch! Mid-season grade: D+

BUFFALO: In a perfect world the silver lining to the Bills miserable 0-8 start would be the fact that at least some young players were getting some experience. Unfortunately, it's far from a perfect world up in Buffalo. The Bills, in fact, have played a number of rookies to date, but none has been particualrly productive. RB C.J. Spiller, whom the Bills took with the 9th pick overall in the hopes that the former Clemson speedster could provide the offense with some big-play explosion, for example, is just 4th on the team in rushing with a measly 130 yards, while he's averaged an even more anemic 4.5 yards per reception. Meanwhile, DT Torrell Troup, the Bills second rounder has contributed some useful minutes up front, but has made few impact plays, while 3rd round DE Alex Carrington has all of one tackle to date. Indeed, the Bills most productive rookie to date has been undrafted rookie free agent WR David Nelson who has 15 receptions, while OT Cord Howard, another undrafted free agent, has started 3 games at RT ahead of OT Ed Wang, a 5th round pick. Mid-season grade: D+

NEW YORK GIANTS: DE Jason Pierre-Paul, the 15th player selected at the 2010 draft, has quietly emerged as one of the Giants' better special teamers, but is stil looking for his first career sack, despite the fact he's gotten a lot of snaps as a situational pass rusher. At the same time, DT Linval Joseph, the Giants' #2 pick, remains buried on the team's depth chart, but showed a few flashes in training camp. In fact, the Giants' most 'productive' - and we use the term liberally - rookie has been P Matt Dodge, whose overall average has been respectable enough, but its still been an adventure just about everytime Dodge handles the ball as he's already muffed two snaps and had one kick blocked, while shanking more than his share of others. Dodge, though, has gotten more comfortable in the job as the season has progressed. Mid-season grade: D-
BALTIMORE: Fortunately, the Ravens, who would have home-field advantage throughout the playoffs were the post-season to start today, haven't needed much help from their 2010 rookie class because that's just about what they have received, although injuries have played a role. In fact, both of the team's second round picks - the Ravens traded out of this year's opening round - have had their rookie seasons derailed by injuries. OLB Sergio Kindle, for example, suffered a serious head injury when he fell down a flight of stairs prior to the start of training camp and won't play until next season at the earliest. Meanwhile, DT Terrence Cody had a knee injury coming out of camp and has been stuck as a 3rd stringer since. Indeed, Cody has yet to record a solo tackle so far this fall. At least Cody has gotten in for a few snaps as 5th round DT Arthur Jones has yet to be even activated. Meanwhile, the Ravens had been hoping that young TEs Ed Dickson and Dennis Pitta, the team's 3rd and 4th round picks respectively, would inject some athleticism to the sometimes sluggish offense, but the duo has combined for just 5 receptions to date, while 5th round WR David Reed has none, but has been effective covering kicks. Mid-season grade: D-

MINNESOTA: It seems not much has gone right for the Vikings so far this season and unfortunately that extends to the their 2010 rookie class. CB Chris Cook, the first of two Vikings' second round picks this past April, did impress in training, but his progress since has been slowed by two knee injuries which forced him to miss four games. Cook has seen duty as a nickle back in the remaining games and has 13 tackles, but has only one pass break-up to date; Cook, though, could see more playing time the rest of the way, though, as the rest of the secondary is pretty banged up too. Meanwhile, RB Toby Gerhart, the Vikings' other second  rounder, has been the primary back-up to Adrian Peterson, but has averaged only 3.3 yards per carry when called upon, which hasn't been that often, while DE Everson Griffin, the team's 4th round pick, has but two tackles in three games. Mid-season grade: D-

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