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NFL draft 2022 Round 1 winners, head-scratching picks, reaches


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Winners from Round 1

New York Jets

The picks: Ahmad "Sauce" Gardner, CB, Cincinnati (No. 4); Garrett Wilson, WR, Ohio State (No. 10) and Jermaine Johnson II, DE, Florida State (No. 26)

I'm a big fan of these three picks. The Jets got my top-ranked corner and top-ranked wide receiver in the top 10, and then they got a potential steal late in the night in Johnson. Gardner is going to shut down one side of the field. He's long and fast, and he didn't allow a single touchdown as the primary defender in his collegiate career.

Wilson is only 6-foot, so he's not a huge red-zone target like Drake London, but he plays bigger because of his long arms, leaping ability and excellent body control to come down with acrobatic catches. He's going to help Zach Wilson complete easy passes because of his ability to run after the catch. And by the way, Wilson is the first receiver the Jets have taken in Round 1 since Santana Moss in 2001.

Johnson slid -- he is my 11th-ranked prospect -- and the Jets pounced, trading pick Nos. 35, 69 and 163 for Nos. 26 and 101. I thought it was possible they could have taken him at No. 10 if the board fell differently, so this is a home-run class so far for general manager Joe Douglas. And he still gets an early pick on Day 2 (No. 38) to get another starter.

Head-scratching moves from Round 1

New England Patriots

The pick: Cole Strange, G/C, Chattanooga (No. 29)

This was a huge reach on my board. I thought Strange might sneak into Round 2, but he's not a first-round talent. I know New England has a hole at guard, but will Strange even start immediately? Strange made 44 starts in college and plays with good technique, but this is high for a prospect who is No. 69 on my Big Board.

The good thing for Bill Belichick & Co. is that they added extra capital by moving down eight spots with the Chiefs, adding pick Nos. 94 and 121.

https://www.espn.com/nfl/draft2022/insider/story/_/id/33821092/nfl-draft-2022-round-1-winners-head-scratching-picks-reaches-mel-kiper-first-round-updates

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