2022 NFL Draft report: A look at all 32 first round picks as Jets load up and Georgia dominate

  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
·14-min read
In this article:
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.

The first round of the 2022 NFL Draft threw up plenty of surprise picks, a number of trades and several teams bagging multiple players.

Eight teams started the night with two picks in the first round, the New York Jets ended up making three!

The Philadelphia Eagles made the biggest splash as they traded one of their first-round picks to the Tennessee Titans in exchange for top receiver AJ Brown.

Meanwhile, the Jacksonville Jaguars made Travon Walker the No.1 overall pick of this draft, pushing Aidan Hutchinson into second.

There was only one quarterback taken in the first round but a record number of defensive players from the Georgia Bulldogs. Here's a look at all 32 picks from the first round of the 2022 NFL Draft.

1. Jacksonville Jaguars - Travon Walker (DE, Georgia)

Travon Walker got the nod over Aidan Hutchinson mainly due to his spectacular performance at the NFL Combine, with the Jaguars going for the physical attributes he possesses and possibility of him going on to be outstanding. Walker could arguably play anywhere along the defensive line, and although he's only got 9.5 sacks to his name in his college career, the Jags believe he's one for the future.

2. Detroit Lions - Aidan Hutchinson (DE, Michigan)

Hutchinson's disappointment at not going number one will be tempered by the fact he's staying local and joining the Detroit Lions from Michigan. His work ethic, attitude and non-stop work rate also seems like a perfect fit with head coach Dan Campbell.

Detroit are trying to do a serious rebuild and Hutchinson can slot in right away with no real flaws in his game and a terrific motor. He looks a safer pick than Walker.

3. Houston Texans - Derek Stingley Jr (CB, LSU)

Stingley's an All-American cornerback who on his form from 2019 and 2020 would make a smooth transition to the NFL and be a star in Lovie Smith's Texans defence. The big problem is he had surgery last September and missed plenty of time. Houston are so bad that they couldn't really miss with the third pick, but taking a cornerback ahead of some offensive line help for QB Davis Mills is an interesting line to take.

4. New York Jets - Ahmad Gardner (CB, Cincinnati)

Ahmad 'Sauce' Gardner not only has a brilliant nickname, but he's also a dominant college cornerback that has every chance to be a stand-out in the NFL given his size, speed and long arms. He's six-foot-three and allowed ZERO touchdowns in coverage in his college career (out of 1,103 snaps), he was targeted just three times a game last season and has nine interceptions in three years - all the numbers made this a no-brainer for the Jets.

5. New York Giants - Kayvon Thibodeaux (DE, Oregon)

Thibodeaux has incredible speed and anticipation off the line and his physical gifts will make him a nightmare for opposing quarterbacks as he'll be hard to stop getting into the backfield.

He was mooted as a possible No.1 pick but there have been doubts raised about his attitude and motivation, but the Giants had no worries pulling the trigger as he could be a superstar. Azeez Ojulari had eight sacks as a rookie last season and as long as Thibodeaux can handle life in the Big Apple then the G-Men will have an outstanding one-two punch as edge rushers.

6. Carolina Panthers - Ikem Ekwonu (OT, North Carolina State)

'Ickey' is a bad man of an offensive tackle, who mauls opponents like a bear and has that nasty streak that can really transform a line into a more physical unit overall. The Panthers need a solution at quarterback, but with Ekwonu's sheer size, strength and potential they couldn't pass him up. He's better stuffing the run than pass protection so needs work to iron out his flaws.

7. New York Giants - Evan Neal (OT, Alabama)

Neal is huge, six-foot-seven and 337lbs, and only allowed one sack last season through his combination of sheer bulk and some nifty footwork for a man of his stature.

It's a great result for Big Blue who get a really solid citizen in their O-Line to go along with a potential superstar edge rusher with their two early picks.

8. Atlanta Falcons - Drake London (WR, USC)

The Falcons have problems everywhere, but especially at receiver and they've followed their trend for big-bodied pass-catchers by making London the first wideout off the board.

Paired with freakishly good tight end Kyle Pitts, new Falcons QB Marcus Mariota has the chance to show he deserves to be a starter in this league, but it still seems early in the Atlanta rebuild.

9. Seattle Seahawks - Charles Cross (LT, Mississippi State)

It was a rare top 10 pick for the Seahawks after a really bad time of things last season, but they've used it to grab what they hope will be a long-standing stalwart of the offensive line. Cross can be a brute in the run game but also has a nice technique, and that persuaded Seattle to fill that need instead of taking an edge rusher with this top pick.

10. New York Jets - Garrett Wilson (WR, Ohio State)

The top 10 rounds off with a pick that sparks a run on receivers as the Jets hope for a Wilson-to-Wilson combination next season by arming QB Zach Wilson with his namesake from Ohio State.

Wilson is fast and can beat defenders, but is on the smaller side so may need to bulk-up to prevent being beaten up in the big leagues. It's a nice second pick for the Jets though, who were not done there...

11. New Orleans Saints - Chris Olave (WR, Ohio State)

The Saints finished dead last in passing offence last season, so along with getting Jameis Winston and Michael Thomas back from injury, they've taken the second Ohio State receiver off the board and added speedy Olave - who can really stretch the field - after trading up from 16 to the 11th pick.

12. Detroit Lions - Jameson Williams (WR, Alabama)

We said the Lions were aggressive, and they traded up to 12th for their second pick of the round to take a punt on Williams, who is uber-talented but will likely miss the start of the season at least as he recovers from a torn ACL. Just how quickly he can return and in what form is everything here - as at his best he's a highlight reel maker after tying the college football record of eight touchdown catches of over 50 yards last season.

13. Philadelphia Eagles - Jordan Davis (DT, Georgia)

It was some sight seeing Davis' huge 340lbs frame thunder to a crazy quick 40-yard sprint time at the Combine, and the Eagles feel he's just the guy to wreak havoc in the middle of the defensive line next season. He'll just need coaching up on passing downs.

14. Baltimore Ravens - Kyle Hamilton (Safety, Notre Dame)

A kind of head-scratcher from the Ravens who need a pass rusher and cornerback and had some studs left on the board but went for a safety instead.

Baltimore take the 'best available' approach though and this do-it-all safety Hamilton can be a genuine playmaker all across the field in the secondary.

15. Houston Texans - Kenyon Green (G, Texas A&M)

Among other things, Houston's offensive line was awful last season, as they couldn't protect QB Davis Mills or block well enough to generate any kind of run game. Green played in four different spots on the O-Line in college and his versatility will be a big asset.

16. Washington Commanders - Jahan Dotson (WR, Penn State)

Dotson adds more speed and possibly punt returning duties to a Washington side that has consistently failed to put up yards and points in high numbers over the last five or six years.

They have pieces now with Terry McLaurin and Curtis Samuel now joined by Dotson, if Carson Wentz can deliver the goods.

17. Los Angeles Chargers - Zion Johnson (G, Boston College)

It's not rocket science here for the Bolts, who have a stud quarterback in Justin Herbert they need to protect him so bagged a plug-in-and-play right guard in Johnson. He should be a solid blocker right from the start and help keep their star man upright.

18. Tennessee Titans - Treylon Burks - (WR, Arkansas)

The blockbuster trade of the night saw the Philadelphia Eagles hand their 18th pick to the Titans to grab top receiver AJ Brown - who they then signed to a whopping $100m deal. While we were digesting that news, the Titans used that pick to draft a like-for-like replacement in Burks.

Brown's are big shoes to fill in Nashville, quite literally, but Burks has a big, sturdy frame to win jump balls and be a red zone danger, while also generating yards after the catch. He'll need to hit the ground running though.

19. New Orleans Saints - Trevor Penning (OT, Northern Iowa)

Replacing Terron Armstead won't be easy, but Penning has size, speed and strength on his side and is described more than once by evaluators as 'nasty'.

That's a good thing though for a left tackle and the six-foot-seven giant will be thrown straight into the starting line-up.

20. Pittsburgh Steelers - Kenny Pickett (QB, Pittsburgh)

The one and only QB taken in the first round is the University of Pittsburgh man who makes the short trip to the other side of the practice facility the college shares with the Steelers.

Dan Marino was the last first-round QB taken from Pitt, so living up to that and filling Ben Roethlisberger's shoes will be a tough task for Pickett.

He looks ready though, he has plenty of experience, threw 42 touchdowns last season and has that swagger and confidence that suggests he could start right away - although with Mitchell Trubiskey already signed he may have to wait for his chance.

21. Kansas City Chiefs - Trent McDuffie (CB, Washington)

KC were tipped to move up to grab a receiver, instead they moved up from 29 and signed a cornerback while also ignoring defensive end Jermaine Johnson who could have helped bolster a defence that ranked 29th in sacks last season.

McDuffie needs to be a day one starter to make this pick worthwhile.

22. Green Bay Packers - Quay Walker (LB, Georgia)

The Chiefs passed on a receiver surely Green Bay won't after losing Davante Adams? Wrong! As Aaron Rodgers mentioned on the Pat McAfee Show, all the wideouts the Packers rated had gone and they felt none left were worth a first round pick.

Instead, the brought in defensive help at linebacker with Walker, who they feel can help tighten them up and make them a meaner outfit.

23. Buffalo Bills - Kaiir Elam (CB, Florida)

Buffalo traded with Baltimore to get this pick of Elam - a cover corner capable of getting physical at the line but also dropping back in coverage and using his considerable speed. There have been very few doubts raised over his ability.

24. Dallas Cowboys - Tyler Smith (OT, Tulsa)

The Cowboys badly need offensive line help and they've drafted well in that position in recent years, so will hope Smith can be another success although he needs to tidy up his game especially in regards to giving away penalties - as he did 16 times last season.

25. Baltimore Ravens - Tyler Linderbaum (C, Iowa)

Linderbaum is the first centre taken in the first round ever by the Ravens, who traded away speedy receiver Marquise Brown to Arizona in order to get him.

It seems a strange move given their needs elsewhere but the Iowa man, despite being on the smaller side, is a canny operator and highly rated in his position.

26. New York Jets - Jermaine Johnson II (DE, Florida State)

The Jets couldn't believe it when top 10 prospect Johnson slipped down the order, so traded back into the first round to add him to their fine tally of three quality players taken on day one.

Johnson has speed and power as an edge rusher who had 12 sacks last season.

Word is that his personality rubbed some teams up the wrong way, but his stylish and confident manner will go down well in New York, and in terms of football he's a hard worker, hard trainer, and tough competitor so exactly what Robert Saleh needs. This is a steal for the Jets.

27. Jacksonville Jaguars - Devin Lloyd (LB, Utah)

The Jags traded up to grab 2021 AP Defensive Player of the Year Lloyd, who is a bit of a ball hawk with a high football IQ that can help him sniff out the danger. He can also be a big problem as a pass rusher from deeper too.

28. Green Bay Packers - Devonte Wyatt (DT, Georgia)

A second first-round pick for the Packers so a receiver for Rodgers? Nope! Instead, a second defender from the Georgia Bulldogs to make a piece of draft history as two players from the same college defence go to the same team in the first round. A solid pair of prospects for the Packers defence.

29. New England Patriots - Cole Strange (G, Chattanooga)

Quite literally a strange selection from Bill Belichick with Strange projected to be more of a third-round choice. The Chattanooga man is a good prospect though and the Pats trading back to get more picks and selecting an unheralded guard this early is classic Belichick.

30. Kansas City Chiefs - George Karlaftis (DE, Purdue)

Credit to the Chiefs for resisting the temptation to trade up for a receiver and instead try and solve their pass rush problem with Karlaftis and heavy-hitter off the edge who will bully his blockers rather than beat them for speed.

31. Cincinnati Bengals - Daxton Hill (S, Michigan)

It was a toss-up with cornerback for the biggest need for the Bengals, but Hill has had a solid college career and can give Cincy flexibility in defence and a possible long-term replacement if Jessie Bates or Vonn Bell leave after next season.

32. Minnesota Vikings - Lewis Cine (S, Georgia)

And finally...the last member of this record-breaking Georgia defence to come off the board in the first round sees Cine move to Minnesota as the Vikings have lost Xavier Woods and Harrison Smith is now 33.

It was an obvious pick given their options.

The article 2022 NFL Draft report: A look at all 32 first round picks as Jets load up and Georgia dominate appeared first on Planetsport.com.

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting