Home NFL 2017 NFL Draft Re-grade: NFC East

2017 NFL Draft Re-grade: NFC East

by Joshua Doering

Perhaps the only thing more impressive about the NFL draft than the amount of time it takes to complete all seven rounds is the amount of grades produced in the aftermath of each selection. The draft’s winners and losers are decided before any pick plays a down of professional football. 

For all the immediate evaluation that is done, it is impossible to fairly assess a draft class without data and the gift of time. Starting with 2010, 110 Sports is going back and grading every NFL draft of the past decade on a team-by-team basis. 

These grades are based first and foremost on production. Other factors were taken into consideration, but the primary goal is figuring out how successful teams were at identifying talent.  

The NFC East is the second stop in the 2017 NFL Draft re-grade

*All stats courtesy of pro-football-reference.com and accurate through the end of the 2019 season. 

Dallas Cowboys

Picks: DE Taco Charlton (28th overall), DB Chidobe Awuzie (60), DB Jourdan Lewis (92), WR Ryan Switzer (133), DB Xavier Woods (191), DB Marquez White (216), DT Joey Ivie (228), WR Noah Brown (239), DT Jordan Carrell (246)

Best pick: Xavier Woods

Woods is second to Lewis in appearances (45) and second to Awuzie in starts (33) among the nine Cowboys draftees. Since 2018, he has started all 29 games he’s played in, picked off four passes, forced three fumbles and recorded 133 tackles. Woods was named the NFC Defensive Player of the Week with an interception, forced fumble and three solo tackles in a 37-18 victory over the Giants in Week 9 last season. 

Worst pick: Taco Charleton

Charleton had a contentious two seasons with Dallas that produced four sacks and 48 tackles in 27 games. He was a healthy scratch for the first two games of the 2019 season and then released on Sept. 18. The Dolphins claimed Charleton off waivers and he led the team with five sacks despite being inactive for four games. Miami waived him on April 30, 2020, and he was signed by the Chiefs on May 4. 

Grade: B+

Charleton has been relatively productive despite being let go by both Dallas and Miami. Awuzie, Lewis, Switzer and Woods have all played in more than 40 games, which means the Cowboys got four reliable contributors (plus Charleton) with three picks in the top 130. Woods was an absolute steal in the sixth round. The biggest flaw with this group is that only Awuzie and Woods have made more than 13 starts. 

New York Giants 

Picks: TE Evan Engram (23), DT Dalvin Tomlinson (55), QB Davis Webb (87), RB Wayne Gallman (140), DE Avery Moss (167), OT Adam Bisnowaty (200)

Best pick: Dalvin Tomlinson

Tomlinson is one of two players in the 2017 draft class and one of 44 total to start every game the past three seasons. He has recorded between 49 and 59 tackles every year. In 2019, Tomlinson set new personal bests in sacks (3.5), tackles for loss (7) and quarterback hits (9) while creating the first turnover of his career. He has more starts than the rest of the Giants’ draft class combined. 

Worst pick: Davis Webb

Hopes were high for Webb, who former teammate Landon Collins said “is going to be really good in the league when it’s his time” and Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, another former teammate, called “a young Eli [Manning].” Alas, Webb was waived by New York after one season. He joined the Jets’ practice squad in 2018 and eventually got promoted to the active roster when Sam Darnold was injured. Webb spent last season on the Bills’ practice squad and has yet to see the field in an NFL game. 

Grade: B

Engram is averaging 51.9 receiving yards in the 34 games he’s been healthy enough to play in and caught six touchdown passes in his rookie season. Gallman has generated over 1,000 yards of total offense though his playing time has decreased significantly with the arrival of Saquon Barkley. Engram hasn’t done enough to make this a B+ yet, but that could change in the near future. 

Philadelphia Eagles

Picks: DE Derek Barnett (14), DB Sidney Jones (43), DB Rasul Douglas (99), WR Mack Hollins (118), RB Donnel Pumphrey (132), WR Shelton Gibson (166), DB Nathan Gerry (184), DT Elijah Qualls (214)

Best pick: Rasul Douglas

Douglas was inactive for the first game of his NFL career and has played in all but one since. He made five starts and picked off two passes in his rookie season as the Eagles won the Super Bowl. In 2018, he recorded another three interceptions and registered 58 tackles while playing in all 16 contests. He appeared in every game again last season, ending the year with 10 passes defended and 35 tackles. No one in the group has played more games than Douglas’ 46. 

Worst pick: Donnell Pumphrey

Pumphrey began his rookie year as Philadelphia’s fourth-string tailback and tore his hamstring in practice before he appeared in a game. He spent the rest of the season on injured reserve. The Eagles waived Pumphrey during final roster cuts in 2018 and he joined the Lions’ practice squad four days later. He returned to the Eagles as a member of their practice squad in October 2018. Pumphrey most recently played for the DC Defenders of the XFL has been out of the NFL since getting released by Philadelphia on Aug. 30, 2019. 

Grade: B-

Barnett will always be remembered for his contribution to the strip-sack of Tom Brady in the Super Bowl and has 14 sacks in 35 games. Hollins missed 2018 with a groin injury and was waived on Dec. 3, 2019. Gerry started 12 times and played in every game for the Eagles last season, producing two interceptions, 2.5 sacks and 78 tackles. This is a rather deep group but neither fourth-rounder worked out and the first two picks have not been able to hold down starting roles. Jones was released on Sept. 5 during final roster cuts.

Washington Football Team

Picks: DE Jonathan Allen (17), LB Ryan Anderson (49), DB Fabian Moreau (81), RB Samaje Perine (114), DB Montae Nicholson (123), TE Jeremy Sprinkle (154), C Chase Roullier (199), WR Robert Davis (209), LB Josh Harvey-Clemons (230)

Best pick: Chase Roullier 

Roullier has the most starts (37) and is tied for the second-most appearances (43) in the group. He started seven times as a rookie before taking complete control of the center position in 2018. The former Wyoming Cowboy played every offensive snap for Washington that season. Roullier made 14 appearances in 2019, starting in all of them.  

Worst pick: Ryan Anderson

Anderson was primarily used on special teams in his first two years before assuming a larger role on defense last season. After two sacks and 33 tackles in 27 appearances through 2018, he played in all 16 games in 2019 and set career highs in just about every statistical category. Anderson finished the season with 44 tackles, four sacks, two fumble recoveries and four starts. 

Grade: A-

The lone player in this class with fewer than 12 appearances is Davis. Seven of the 10 players have at least 35. Four of them have more than 25 starts. Allen was restricted to five games in 2017 but has 14 sacks and 129 tackles over the past two years. Sprinkle caught 26 passes in an expanded offensive role in 2019. While no one pick stands out, Washington has gotten a good deal of production from the group collectively. 

Click here to see the entire draft grades series. 

Photo by All-Pro Reels / Wikimedia Commons

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