Originally written on 60 Max Power O  |  Last updated 11/15/14

2012 NFL DRAFT GRADES – AFC WEST

While we can assign more accurate grades once these draft classes have been given three seasons to perform for their collective teams, we can still assess the selections that were made. First, in terms of how effectively each team addressed their most glaring deficiencies. Along with how successful they were at accumulating depth, and by how effectively the new additions are expected to perform, based upon the offensive or defensive system that they will now participate in. With that, here are the grades for the AFC West.

San Diego Chargers

Pilfering Melvin Ingram with the 18th pick, provides sufficient reason to award A.J. Smith and his staff a very high mark, after he was projected as a top 12 selection on many draft boards. Not only will the Chargers’ defense improve because of his exceptional ability, but Kendall Reyes and Brandon Taylor will also contribute to that unit immediately, through both their athleticism and leadership skills. The massive Johnnie Troutman is an intriguing pick, who will cement this even further as a successful draft if he can maintain his focus. David Molk also has the potential to supplement the O-line. I would have preferred a more aggressive approach to addressing the RB position, as opposed to waiting until round seven, although Edwin Baker might compete for a backup role. Still, that alone prohibits San Diego from collecting an A.

Draft Grade A-

Kansas City Chiefs

Dontari Poe might eventually become an excellent performer, and justify Scott Pioli’s decision to select him with the 11th pick. However, we already do know that his production at Memphis was questionable, and that the competition he encountered was hardly formidable. All of which makes Pioli’s choice to snare him so quickly difficult to defend at this point. Even when you factor in his widely discussed exhibition at the combine. Romeo Crennel could help Poe maximize his abilities, and DT was definitely a position of need. But drafting Michael Brockers would have served that purpose too. Jeff Allen is a commendable second round selection, and could eventually be joined on the Chiefs’ offensive line by Donald Stephenson, although he has attained question marks regarding his level of commitment. If either Devon Wylie or Julian Hemmingway can contribute at WR, the team’s grade will elevate.

Draft Grade C+

Oakland Raiders

It is difficult to assign a grade here, since the additions of Carson Palmer, Aaron Curry, Terrelle Pryor, Joe Barksdale and Taiwan Jones during 2011 left the Raiders with a grand total of five picks, before Reggie McKenzie traded down to secure a sixth on day three of the process. Still, I was initially surprised that McKenzie did not address any of the team’s glaring needs on defense (OLB, ILB, DE, DT, and CB), when the team’s first opportunity occurred. But Tony Bergstrom has an excellent chance to start immediately at guard, and should thrive in the team’s newly instituted zone blocking schemes. Plus, he will further cement Oakland’s young, talented O-line as the team’s principal strength. Miles Burris was one of the most intriguing players heading into the draft, and should be a contributor on defense, based upon his non-stop motor alone. Juron Criner should also stick as a possession receiver.

Draft Grade C

Denver Broncos

After being impressed with John Elway’s aggressive approach toward improving the roster throughout the offseason, the decision to trade out of round one was surprising, even with the understanding that he was unable to secure the player(s) that he originally desired. I can’t ignore the fact that Denver began the process with the 25th overall selection, and ended up with Derek Wolfe at #36. While he is aggressive, there are concerns regarding his ability to hold up in a 4-3 front, and other options were available. Burning the 57th pick on Brock Osweiler simply does not make sense, given the recent commitment to Peyton Manning, and the more immediate needs that could have been addressed at this slot. I’ve seen some Bronco fans passionately defend this move, by stating that a quality backup is necessary if Manning suffers an injury. But if that does come to pass, Osweiler will not be a suitable replacement this season, and Denver will still have an enormous problem. Third rounder Ronnie Hillman could emerge within the mix at RB. But although the team will be better this season, it will not occur because of its draft selections.

Draft Grade C-

Be sure to check out other great articles at Fantasy Knuckleheads.

var switchTo5x=true; stLight.options({publisher:''});

MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Report: Robert Griffin III benched by Redskins for McCoy

Dice-K Matsuzaka headed back to Japan

Lovie Smith: 2-9 Bucs are still in playoff contention

UCLA QB Brett Hundley likely to enter NFL draft

Bills will return to Ralph Wilson Stadium for Sunday's game

Miller to Oregon transfer rumor originates on Reddit

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Valencia FC ditches bat logo amidst DC Comics challenge

Paul Pierce: Celtics' Big Three was like 'Holy Trinity'

Cubs reportedly offer Jon Lester more than $135 million

Colin Kaepernick: Jim Harbaugh will be back in 2015

Jeremy Maclin not happy with Riley Cooper’s contract remark

Broncos reportedly waive kicker McManus, sign Connor Barth

Derrick Rose leaves game with hamstring tightness

WATCH: Ty Lawson drops Kirk Hinrich to the floor

Alabama DL trolls Auburn with Instagram photo

Rockies pitcher takes shot at former Astros pitcher

WATCH: Paul Pierce signs autograph during game

Jeremy Hill asks great question about alma mater LSU

NBA rookie rankings after 1st month of 2014-15 season

Statistic about Derrick Rose, Jimmy Butler very revealing

Aaron Rodgers blasts those who accused him of trolling Vikings

The century's 10 most one-sided college football rivalries

WATCH: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly of NBA's first month

Sherman mocks NFL media policies in press conference

NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.

Rose leaves with injury again

WATCH: Pierce signs for fan during game

Report: McCoy to start over RG3

Braxton Miller headed to Oregon?

10 most one-sided college football rivalries

Pierce: C's Big Three like 'Holy Trinity'

Maclin unhappy with Cooper comments

Post-Week 13 CFB Playoff projection

What has Masai Ujiri built in Toronto?

How L.A. should replace Hanley

Lester, Red Sox still talking contract

Why each NFL team should be thankful

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.