We all know that draft grades, sooner than three years in, are largely meaningless. We also all know that we all like to read them - you're here reading this sentence, after all.
ESPN and their lead analyst Mel Kiper know this too, and Kiper has revised his 2014 draft grades to account for the classes' contributions one year in. Originally, Kiper had the Broncos graded as a C+. Now, he's knocked them down... to a C.
His explanation is pretty spot-on. Via ESPN In$ider -
Post-draft grade: C+
Summary: The Broncos went into the 2014 draft as the team that, on paper, probably had the fewest true immediate needs. The reality is that no front office is drafting with the hope that rookies will have to play key roles. Denver had been active in free agency, adding secondary help (Aqib Talib, T.J. Ward) as well as a proven pass-rusher (DeMarcus Ware). This was a win-now roster heading into 2014 -- a well-constructed group on both sides of the ball.
To the extent that they needed a rookie to step up, I think you have to call the addition of Bradley Roby a success. He played over 850 snaps, and proved some of my suspicions that he'd struggle unfounded, as he played pretty well considering how raw I felt he was. Roby is clearly a keeper and a certain starter for years to come. After that, however, there wasn't much of note. Cody Latimer was buried on the depth chart in a deep group of pass-catching options at WR and tight end, and will still need to show that he's a good player, not just a great athlete. Lamin Barrow could start in the future, but we just don't know yet beyond special teams duty. Michael Schofield was supposed to provide help at right tackle, but simply isn't ready yet. No, there weren't many holes to fill, and they won a lot, but beyond Roby there isn't much to show for this class at all, and we don't have any certainty that contributions will come and that useful depth was added.
New grade: C
It's hard to argue with Kiper here. The only solid contributor was Bradley Roby, with most other draftees inactive on game day (and 3rd round pick Michael Schofield a big disappointment considering the Broncos' woes on the offensive line, at least in his rookie year).
Luckily we have a few more years to see how these players pan out.
After the draft, 60% of Mile High Report readers gave the Broncos' draft class a B. How would you grade them now?