10 takeaways from Day 1 of the 2022 NFL Draft

2016 NFL Draft
swimfinfan from Chicago, CC BY-SA 2.0 , via Wikimedia Commons

Following the first day of the event, we have put together some NFL Draft analysis 2022. And as it usually happens, it was mayhem and one of the most exciting days of the year.

If you’re one of those who cashed in on NFL Draft betting props, then kudos to you. But in reality, no one saw some of those big trades coming, with Marquise ‘Hollywood’ Brown landing in Arizona as a true shocker. But hey, if you bet Brian Gutekunst would mess up again, then you must’ve filled your pockets.

NFL Draft analysis 2022

Most people had the same reaction to 2022 NFL Draft: Surprise, especially for all the teams that refused to make a big splash. So, now that we’ve seen the first 32 picks, some big moves, and what’s to come for every single team; let’s take a look at the biggest takeaways and storylines from the first day of the Draft.

The Packers truly hate Aaron Rodgers

The Green Bay Packers used not one but two picks on their defense instead of taking a wide receiver. This team just lost its top two weapons in Davante Adams and Marquez Valdes-Scantling. They had two first-round picks, scouted the best wideout prospects in the nation, yet didn’t take any of them.

Moreover, both A.J. Brown and Hollywood Brown found new homes last night. Did they even bother picking up the phone? Are they doing this out of spite for Rodgers? Hopefully, they’ll have some of the 2022 NFL Draft sleepers on their board or this won’t make any sense.

It’s now or never for Jalen Hurts

Prior to the Draft, some speculated that Jalen Hurts could be on the outs. Now, it’s clear that the Philadelphia Eagles believe he’s the right guy to lead their offense. They gave him another elite weapon in A.J. Brown to line up opposite DeVonta Smith.

The Eagles finished the season strong and Nick Sirianni found balance in their offense. Their running game allowed Hurts to make the most of his skill set, so there will be no more room for excuses now. He needs to prove that he’s the real deal.

How long until Kenny Pickett starts?

The Pittsburgh Steelers did the right thing. They picked the local star in Kenny Pickett, who won’t even have to move and is quite familiar with Heinz Field. Most NFL Draft predictions had them going with the Panthers’ QB but now the only question left to answer is… how long until he starts?


The Steelers’ QB room consists of Mason Rudolph and Mitch Trubisky. Neither of them is a true starting-caliber player and you don’t have to be a football savant to realize that. It’ll take some time before Pickett gets the hold of an NFL offense but he’s got the arm strength and the talent to take over. I say… Week 10?

Wow, Lions. Wow.

The Detroit Lions were one of the biggest winners of the night, and you don’t hear that too often. They held on to local star Aidan Hutchinson, arguably the best player in the class, but they didn’t stop there. Adding Alabama’s Jameson Williams was a huge swing for a team that already had a promising wideout in Amon-Ra St. Brown.

Williams, who’s coming off an ACL injury, was touted as the best wide receiver prospect in the nation. The players seem to believe in Dan Campbell and will compete hard for the full four quarters, so all they need now is a quarterback. They’re really onto something and rank near the top of our NFL Draft analysis 2022.

Are the Jets… good?

Just like with the Lions, we’re not used to the New York Jets doing the right thing. They landed a true lockdown cornerback in Ahmad ‘Sauce’ Gardner, a guy who didn’t allow a single touchdown in man coverage in his full tenure with the Cincinnati Bearcats.

On top of that, they landed Ohio State’s Garrett Wilson, an explosive receiver with big-play potential and great hands. They also added Jermaine Johnson II, who was projected to be a top-10 pick. If Zach Wilson turns out to be good and Robert Saleh works his magic on the defense, they might not suck that much in 2022.

What’s going on with Malik Willis?

Malik Willis was supposed to be the best among all QBs in the 2022 NFL Draft. In fact, some speculated he could go as high as second-overall at some point. So why on Earth is he still on the Green Room? Why no one, not any of the QB-needy teams draft the star out of Liberty?

Willis looks like a can’t-miss kind of talent. He’s got the arm, the strength, the legs, and the physical tools to become a difference-maker at the next level. So, who’s going to make the most of his talent? This looks like a decision many teams will come to regret down the line.

Deebo Samuel isn’t going anywhere

A.J. Brown was one of the biggest winners of the night. Not only did he get his wish to be traded but he also signed a $100 million extension. But Deebo Samuel stayed put with the San Francisco 49ers, who were asking for at least two first-round picks for his services in any trade.

If he wasn’t traded last night, then he’s not going to be traded at all. At least not during the Draft. Now, Samuel will be forced to play with the 49ers or threaten to sit out for the season. He reportedly wants $25+ million a year, and the Niners aren’t sure if they want to pay him that much.

The Giants are onto something

Some people predicted that Saquon Barkley could be on the move last night, as newly-appointed GM Joe Schoen made it clear that no one was safe. But not only did they keep the Penn State superstar but they also revamped both sides of their team in a very, very big fashion.

Adding Evan Neal will give them one of the best young right tackles in the league for years to come. Also, having Kayvon Thibodeaux fall into their laps was a huge break for a team desperately craving an edge rusher. They’re big winners on our NFL Draft analysis 2022.

The Jags will be the Jags

As solid as he is, one can only wonder whether Travon Walker was the right choice at no.1 over Aidan Hutchinson. Walker was one of the defensive anchors on the best, most physical defense in the nation last year but it’s not like his one-on-one pass-rush metrics were off the charts.

Most NFL Draft predictions had Walker falling outside of the top 10 with Hutchinson, a potential generational defender, going first overall. But this is what truly defines bad teams: Making bad decisions. Hopefully, Walker will turn out to be as good as they expect, as God knows their fans have been through enough already.

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