What a difference three years can make
Twists of fate are what make the draft worth watching, but they are also why it's tough to tell how well a team did on draft day until three years later.
Team Grades from '05 Draft
|NFL Team||2005 Average||2008 Scouts Inc.||Arizona||A-||D|
|New Orleans||B-||C||N.Y. Giants||C+||B|
|San Diego||B+||A||San Francisco||B+||C+|
Five teams (Arizona, Carolina, Chicago, Detroit and Minnesota) were given at least a two-letter grade difference, while eight others (Denver, Houston, Kansas City, New Orleans, Philadelphia,
San Francisco, Seattle and St. Louis) had a one-letter grade difference.
Who knew the 10th overall pick, wide receiver Mike Williams, was going to be a bust in Detroit, or that fifth-round pick defensive end Trent Cole was going to be a Pro Bowler? These twists of fate are what make the draft worth watching, but they also are why it's tough to tell how good a team did on draft day until three years later.
15 quick hits about the 2005 NFL draft class• Derek Anderson (grade out of college: 73), who was drafted by the Ravens in the sixth round, is the highest-rated quarterback in this class today. The Ravens waived him, and a day later the Browns claimed him. He was in the 2007 Pro Bowl, and the Ravens are still struggling to find a quarterback.
• 12 Pro Bowlers came out of the 2005 draft: LB Shawne Merriman (Chargers, current grade: 93), DE DeMarcus Ware (Cowboys, current grade: 93), WR Braylon Edwards (Browns, current grade: 88), OT Jammal Brown (Saints, current grade: 87), G Logan Mankins (Patriots, current grade: 87), LB Lofa Tatupu (Seahawks, current grade: 87), RB Frank Gore (49ers, current grade: 84), DE Trent Cole (Eagles, current grade: 79), RB Marion Barber (Cowboys, grade: 77), QB Derek Anderson (Browns, grade: 74), KR Justin Miller (Jets, current grade: 65), KR Jerome Mathis (Texans, current grade: 56).
• After the 49ers decided to take QB Alex Smith (grade out of college: 98) over QB Aaron Rodgers (grade out of college: 99) first overall, Rodgers dropped to 24th overall and was picked by the Packers.
• Falcons LB Michael Boley (fifth round, current grade: 85) is the highest-rated player drafted on Day 2.
• DT Jay Ratliff (Cowboys, current grade: 65) is the highest-rated player drafted in the seventh round.
• Maurice Clarett (released by Denver) was the ninth running back drafted in 2005. He has more arrests than rushing yards in the NFL.
• DT Anttaj Hawthorne (Oakland, grade out of college: 89), from Wisconsin is the highest-rated player out of college who is no longer in the NFL.
• The Lions drafted a wide receiver in the first round for the third year in a row. Their pick, Mike Williams (current grade: 52), now plays in Tennessee.
• Fifty-three of the 255 players drafted are no longer in the league.
• Tampa Bay, Seattle, Indianapolis and Green Bay drafted the most players (four) who are no longer in the NFL.
• Only five teams' entire draft class remains in the NFL (Tennessee, N.Y. Giants, Miami, Houston and Baltimore).
• No team has all its drafted players from 2005.
Scouts Inc. watches games, breaks down film and studies football from all angles for ESPN.com.
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Don't be too quick to judge a team's draft
Scouts Inc. tests the theory that it takes three years to fully evaluate a team's draft class by looking back at the '05 draft. The lesson learned is grades handed out on draft day do not always match the grades handed out three years later.
Re-grading the 2005 draft
If the 49ers knew LB Shawne Merriman was going terrorize the NFL, would they have taken him first overall instead of QB Alex Smith? We think so.
Check out the rest of Scouts Inc.'s 2005 re-draft.