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Ell’s NFL Draft Grades 2023: AFC East

Bills: B-

TE Dalton Kincaid, 1st Round, G O’Cyrus Torrence, 2nd Round, ILB Dorian Williams, Tulane, 3rd Round, WR Justin Shorter, Florida, 5th Round, G Nick Broeker, Ole Miss, CB Alex Austin, Oregon State, 7th Round

The Bills moved up to select the top pass catching TE in Kincaid giving Josh Allen another reliable target in the passing game. Torrence was great value late in the 2nd round as many had a mid to late 1st round grade on him; he should help the run game, as well as, the passing game. Williams is an athletic read and react LB who can provide solid depth inside with possible starting potential. Shorter has the size and skills to be a solid WR, but wasn’t able to put up the production in college so he will provide depth. Broeker and Austin will provide depth at their positions as well.

Jets: C

Edge Will McDonald IV, 1st Round, C Joe Tippmann, Wisconsin, 2nd Round, T Carter Warren, Pitt, 4th Round, Israel Abanikanda, 5th Round, OLB Zaire Barnes, Western Michigan, CB Jarrick Bernard-Converse, LSU, 6th Round, TE Zack Kuntz, Old Dominion, 7th Round

The Jets wanted a Tackle to protect their newly acquired QB, but with an early run at the position and a trade by the Steelers they were left picking an edge rusher. McDonald had a late 1st round/early 2nd round grade but the Jets picked him mid 1st round. He does have solid traits to be a quality edge rusher, but he will likely start off playing in certain situations. Tippman was considered the top Center prospect and has the size to possibly fill in at other positions, but the hope is that he will take the starting Center job. Warren is a four year starter at LT with good size who can provide depth at both Tackle spots with starting potential. Abanikanda is a physical runner who will provide depth, but could work his way into some carries. Barnes, Bernard-Converse, and Kuntz will all provide depth at their positions as well as Special Teams.

Patriots: C+

CB Christian Gonzalez, Oregon, 1st Round, DE Keion White, Georgia Tech, 2nd Round, ILB Marte Mapu, Sacramento State, 3rd Round, C Jake Andrews, Troy, K Chad Ryland, UMD, G Sidy Sow, Eastern Michigan, 4th Round G Antonio Mafi, UCLA, 5th Round, WR Kayshon Boutte, LSU, P Bryce Baringer, Michigan State, WR Demario Douglas, Liberty, CB Ameer Speed, Michigan State, 6th Round, CB Isaiah Bolden, Jackson State, 7th Round

The Patriots were able to trade down and still get a top 10 talent in Gonzalez to sure up a CB spot giving them a potential #1 CB for the long term with his size, skills, and athleticism. Keion White, like many players the Pats selected, is a versatile player with experience at TE and DE, but he could be a potential starter on the D-line; he was considered a late 1st round pick so good value in the 2nd round. Mapu is a Safety/LB hybrid and can be used in multiple ways, but he will start out as depth and on Special Teams. Andrews has experience at both Center and Guard and will provide depth at both spots. Ryland is a big leg kicker who will compete for the starting job, as well as, Punter Bryce Baringer at his position. Sow is a huge lineman with experience at both Guard and Tackle, while Mafi is another massive player who is a former DT, but both will provide depth on the O-line inside. Boutte is a talented WR considered a 1st round talent prior to the college year, but he will have to work his way up the depth chart, along with Douglas, Speed, and Bolden at their positions.

Dolphins: C

CB Cam Smith, South Carolina, 2nd Round, RB Devon Achane, Texas A&M, 3rd Round, WR Elijah Higgins, Stanford, 6th Round, T Ryan Hayes, Michigan, 7th Round

The Dolphins had to forfeit their 1st round pick, but getting Cam Smith in the 2nd round who was considered a mid to late 1st round pick talent was good value. Smith is a lanky CB who can provide solid depth behind Howard and Ramsey; he may be the third CB on the field early in his career before working his way up. Achane is a three level running back with great speed who may be able to work his way on to the field as a 3rd down back early in his career; his size may prevent him from starting. Higgins is a big WR with good athleticism playing from the slot giving them depth at the position. Hayes is an undersized Tackle who may have to move inside to Guard.

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