NFL

2024 NFL Draft Recap: Who heard their name called on Night 1?

Apr 25, 2024, 5:00 PM | Updated: Apr 26, 2024, 12:25 pm

Fans gather prior to the first round of the 2024 NFL Draft at Campus Martius Park and Hart Plaza on...

DETROIT, MICHIGAN - APRIL 25: Fans gather prior to the first round of the 2024 NFL Draft at Campus Martius Park and Hart Plaza on April 25, 2024 in Detroit, Michigan. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)

(Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)

After months of evaluating draft prospects, studying college tape and taking measurements, the 2024 NFL Draft is finally here!

This year’s draft class will likely be headlined by the quarterbacks, with Caleb Williams presumably going first to the Chicago Bears tonight. But with other gunslingers on the board, and a few blue-chip wide receivers, anything could happen in Detroit.

But one thing is for sure, it’s a night that no one will want to miss.

Below you’ll find a recap of the events that transpired Thursday night, including who got selected to which team, and how the initial fit looks.

1.  QB Caleb Williams – Chicago Bears via Carolina Panthers 

College: USC

Grade: A

Surprise, surprise. All but confirmed for weeks and months, the Beaks take Caleb Williams with the #1 overall pick.

The 2022 Hesiman Trophy winner may be the best quarterback prospect in quite some times, seen as a true franchise-changing talent. And thanks to last year’s trade with the Carolina Panthers, the Bears get to add him to their roster, alongside their own ninth overall pick.

The future is now with Caleb Williams in the Windy City.

2.  QB Jayden Daniels – Washington Commanders 

College: LSU

Grade: A

The reigning Hesiman Trophy winner had one of the best collegiate seasons in recent memory. He finished with 3,812 passing yards and 40 touchdowns. Daniels’ has been on fire since he joined the SEC however, combining for 6,725 yards and 57 scores in two years.

His improvement in accuracy across the five years in college (particularly the last two with LSU) are what make him such an intriguing prospect. In top of that, he’s an great athlete, able to extend plays with his legs.

The 24-year-old dual-threat QB heads to The Capitol.

3.  QB Drake Maye – New England Patriots  

College: North Carolina

Grade: A

Maye, 21, is a young, athletic QB who has all the traits to be a franchise player. His physical stature (6’5″, 220 pounds) coupled with his athleticism makes him most team’s ideal epitome for the position.

Yes, he’s a little green with inconsistency (sub-65% completion last season), but he wasn’t in the best situation at North Carolina. Being in a structured environment with established pieces should help Maye find his footing.

Jerrod Mayo gets his young gunslinger to jump-start the rebuild in the new era of Patriots football.

4.  WR Marvin Harrison Jr. – Arizona Cardinals 

College: Ohio State 

Grade: A

Harrison has been ready-made for the NFL for two years now, dominating college football along the way. He has all the tools to be a Pro Bowl WR from Day 1. Length, size, speed, hands, demeanor; It’s all there for the son of a hall of famer. And that’s something QB Kyler Murray will be most excited about moving forward.

Slam dunk for GM Monti Ossenfort.

5.  OT Joe Alt – Los Angeles Chargers  

College:  Notre Dame 

Grade: B+

The Notre Dame alum is a plug-and-play left tackle at the NFL level and should be considered that on Day 1 of training camp. He has all the makings of being an All-Pro down the line, and the perfect pairing next to Rashawn Slater. 2024 should be about protecting Justin Herbert and surrounding him with talent.

6. WR Malik Nabers – New York Giants

College: LSU

Grade: A

I’ll say it again: New York needs a star wide receiver more than a QB at the moment, and that’s where they go with the sixth pick.

Nabers is a burner, possessing elite speed (4.35 40-yard-dash) that New York hasn’t had in quite some time. He’s more than just speed though, equipped with elite hands and an ability to go get the football with physicality. In some cases, he’s the No.1 WR in the 2024 NFL draft class.

7. OT J.C. Latham – Tennessee Titans 

College: Alabama 

Grade: B+

It may be a reach, but GM Ran Carthon gets some protection for Will Levis.

Alabama’s JC Latham does that, both in the pass and run game. At the very least, he’s the Titans next right tackle for years to come. Hopefully, he can play across the board in a pinch as well.

You can never have enough quality offensive tackles.

8. QB Michael Penix Jr. – Atlanta Falcons

College: Washington 

Grade: C

What are the Falcons doing?!?

Penix has the skillset and resume to be a starting QB in the NFL. Yes, his mechanics are a little funky. And yes, he has a lengthy injury. However, his pros should outweigh the cons. Those include finishing second in Heisman Trophy voting and making the National Championship last season.

But they just signed Kirk Cousins to a long-term deal. I don’t get this.

9. WR Rome Odunze – Chicago Bears

College: Washington 

Grade: A+

I said this a week ago, and it still rings true:

Adding Rome Odunze to a WR room of D.J. Moore and Keenan Allen seems unfair for the rest of the NFC North and for the rest of the league for that matter. He compliments his counterparts well in this scenario, being the physical big-body wideout that can go make a contested catch. And just like Nabers, Odunze is seen by many as the best WR in the class.

The Bears’ defense was a highlight a year prior and will be further enhanced later in the draft. Having two picks in the top 10 should be about adding the best prospect possible. Because of that, Chicago is elated to take the Washington Huskie here.

There are no excuses for Caleb Williams, even in Year 1.

None whatsoever.

10. [TRADE] QB J.J. McCarthy – Minnesota Vikings via New York Jets

College: Michigan 

Grade: A-

Our first trade of the 2024 draft sees Minnesota move up one spot, giving the Jets No. 11th, 129th and 157th overall for 10th and 203rd to ensure they get their QB of the future.

McCarthy’s numbers aren’t eye-popping by any means (less than 3,000 yards passing every year), but his accuracy and overall feel of the game propels him into a top-five selection. Additionally, the draft process went smoothly for him, showing out on his Pro Day last month.

Being under the tutelage of Jim Harbaugh, and winning a national championship, makes him a pro-ready gunslinger who can compete for the starting job on Day 1.

11. [TRADE] OL Olumuyiwa Fashanu – New York Jets via Minnesota Vikings

College: Penn State

Grade: A-

They picked up additional draft compensation, and added protection for Aaron Rodgers. That’s a win in my book.

Penn State’s Fashanu was projected to be the first OT taken a few months back, but an average combine made him take a bit of a dip this cycle. The Jets are fine with that, snagging a premium OL at a position of need to keep Rodgers intact.

Brock Bowers was an option, but it’s about the QB here and keeping him on the field.

Joe Douglas knows what he’s doing at the moment.

12. QB Bo Nix – Denver Broncos 

College: Oregon

Grade: B-

I would have preferred a quality edge rusher here for the Broncos, but after the run on QBs, they had to get their guy.

It’ll be an interesting QB battle in Colorado this summer/fall.

13. TE Brock Bowers – Las Vegas Raiders 

College: Georgia 

Grade: A

Love, love, love the pick for Las Vegas. They have other positional needs, but getting a blue-chip talent without having to trade up makes this a win.

14. OL Taliese Fuaga – New Orleans Saints

College: Oregon State

Grade: A-

The Saints have the weapons and roster to win the NFC South, they just have to keep Derek Carr upright.

That’s why Taliese Fuaga is the pick here, a plug-and-play tackle from the jump. And that’s what matters right now for New Orleans.

15. EDGE Laiatu Latu – Indianapolis Colts

College: UCLA

Grade: A

The Sacramento native possesses elite speed (4.64 40-time), size and production to make him a very viable pick for Indy. He can play inside and out but is elite at getting after the quarterback.

What a pass rush GM Chris Ballard has now.

16. DL Byron Murphy II – Seattle Seahawks

College: Texas

Grade: A-

17. [TRADE] EDGE Dallas Turner – Minnesota Vikings via Jacksonville Jaguars

College: Alabama

Grade: A

The Vikings are making moves, trading the 23rd and 167th picks the year, plus a third and fourth-rounder in 2025, for 17th overall from Jacksonville.

And they get a BIG-TIME pass rusher in Dallas Turner. Great work after adding McCarthy already.

18. OT Amarius Mims – Cincinnati Bengals

College: Georgia 

Grade: A-

19. EDGE Jared Verse – Los Angeles Rams

College: Florida State 

Grade: A-

First Byron Murphy, now Jared Verse. The NFC West just got a whole lot more scary on the defensive line.

20. OL Troy Fautanu – Pittsburgh Steelers

College: Washington 

Grade: A

21. EDGE Chop Robinson – Miami Dolphins

College: Penn State 

Grade: A-

22. CB Quinyon Mitchell – Philadelphia Eagles

College: Toledo

Grade: A

23. WR Brian Thomas Jr. – Jacksonville Jaguars via Minnesota Vikings

College: LSU

Grade: A-

24. [TRADE] CB Terrion Arnold – Detroit Lions via Dallas Cowboys

College: Alabama

Grade: A

A positional need and the Lions get the best CB prospect in the process. Great work by Detroit to identify a falling player and go and snag him.

25. OT Jordan Morgan – Green Bay Packers

College: Arizona 

Grade: B

26. OL Graham Barton – Tampa Bay Buccaneers

College: Duke 

Grade: B+

27. DL Darius Robinson – Arizona Cardinals via Houston Texans 

College: Missouri 

Grade: A-

28. [TRADE] WR Xavier Worthy – Kansas City Chiefs via Buffalo Bills

College: Texas 

Grade: A

Yeah, this was always happening, just a few picks earlier in this scenario.

A new toy for Patrick Mahomes and Andy Reid in KC.

29. [TRADE] OT Tyler Guyton – Dallas Cowboys via Detroit Lions

College: Oklahoma 

Grade: A-

30.  CB Nate Wiggins – Baltimore Ravens 

College: Clemson 

Grade: B+

31.  WR Ricky Pearsall — San Francisco 49ers

College: Florida

Grade: B

Love the player, not a fan of where they took him. But he’ll be an instant impact guy for one of the best offenses in the NFL.

31.  WR Xavier Legette — Carolina Panthers via Buffalo Bills (via Kansas City Chiefs)

College: South Carolina

Grade: B+

Stay locked in for more updates from the 2024 NFL Draft as they happen.

Key offseason dates for the San Francisco 49ers

  • April 25-27 – 2024 NFL Draft in Detroit
  • May 20-21, May 23, May 28-29, May 31–OTAs
  • June 4-6 Mandatory Minicamp

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