Wednesday, March 22, 2023

2022 NFL Draft order: List of picks, needs, grades for Raiders, Chiefs, Broncos and Chargers

The NFL saw flurries of big-name change this offseason, and the AFC West easily led the way. The Chiefs dealt No. 1 pass-catcher Tyreek Hill to Miami in a stunning move to restock the offense. The Raiders spent big to land Davante Adams and Chandler Jones, two of this year’s top free agents. The Chargers also doled out heaps of cash to inject their defense with star power, namely Khalil Mack and J.C. Jackson. And the Broncos outdid them all, sending a lucrative package to Seattle in exchange for perennial Pro Bowl quarterback Russell Wilson.

Still, the 2022 NFL Draft is a vital building block for all four franchises in the West, with the Chiefs looking to hold off a trio of suddenly aggressive rivals. Follow along here as we track all of the AFC West’s 2022 selections:


Top needs (unranked): TE, DE, LB, CB, OT, RB

The only glaring need is at tight end, where Noah Fant was shipped out as part of the package for Russell Wilson. Randy Gregory is in town as pass-rushing help for Bradley Chubb, but they could still use more bodies in the trenches after Shelby Harris’ departure. Linebacker and running back could also use some depth/competition, with vets like Melvin Gordon still unsigned.

2022 draft picks:

2 (64)


3 (75) TBD
3 (96) TBD
4 (115) TBD
4 (116) TBD
5 (145) TBD
6 (206) TBD
7 (232) TBD
7 (234) TBD

Stay tuned for analysis.


Top needs (unranked): OT, LB, DT, WR, RB

Protecting Justin Herbert is paramount, and they could easily stand to upgrade at right tackle, where Storm Norton started in 2021. With the busy Kyzir White leaving in free agency, the inside LB corps could also use a playmaker to pair with the rest of their upgraded defense. Wideout and running back aren’t dire needs with stars like Austin Ekeler and Mike Williams in tow, but the backups there could warrant a push.

2022 draft picks:

1 (17)

Boston College OG Zion Johnson


3 (79) TBD
4 (123) TBD
5 (160) TBD
6 (195) TBD
6 (214) TBD
7 (236) TBD
7 (254) TBD
7 (255) TBD
7 (260) TBD

If keeping Herbert upright is key, then the Chargers took a step in the right direction by adding Johnson with their first pick. He may not be a sexy addition, but he brings plenty of versatility to the trenches. Capable of suiting up at guard, center or even tackle if needed, the big man should help fortify Herbert’s protection as Los Angeles goes for it all in 2022.


Top needs (unranked): DE, WR, OT, S

Frank Clark isn’t exactly producing like a top pass-rusher these days, and he’s about the only proven name off the edge in their defense. Tyreek Hill’s abrupt departure also leaves them with big question marks out wide, with JuJu Smith-Schuster and Marquez Valdes-Scantling both better suited as No. 2 types. They could also use more long-term options in the secondary.

2022 draft picks:

1 (21)

Washington CB Trent McDuffie


1 (30) Purdue DE George Karlaftis A
2 (50) TBD
2 (62) TBD
3 (94) TBD
3 (103) TBD
4 (121) TBD
4 (135) TBD
7 (233) TBD
7 (243) TBD
7 (251) TBD
7 (259) TBD

Call it a fine decision by the Chiefs to add McDuffie with their top pick, although they arguably could’ve waited until No. 29 to select from the remaining top corners rather than move up to No. 21. The Washington product is considered a solid all-around corner despite a lack of elite physical tools, and he should see early playing time in the wake of Charvarius Ward’s departure.


Top needs (unranked): OT, OG, S, DT, WR

Derek Carr got paid, and so did his new toys, but Las Vegas could stand to bolster the O-line at multiple spots. Ditto the back end of its secondary. Wide receiver is not a big need with Davante Adams in town as the new No. 1, but Hunter Renfrow could use additional running mates.

2022 draft picks:

3 (86)


4 (126) TBD
5 (164) TBD
5 (165) TBD
7 (227) TBD

Stay tuned for analysis.

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