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Draft Class 14 Grades

Written and Edited by: Robert Jäger, Reporter for DIE FAUSCHLAG NACHRICTEN

Draft League Europe’s fourteenth ever draft has successfully concluded, so we can now go back to look at each team’s selections to see who performed the best at one of DLE’s marquee events. But before we start, please note: These grades are based on the players selected by each team in a vacuum. These grades do not take into account each team’s roster before and after the draft, nor will it consider each trade that led to these selections. These grades only consider the individual players selected, how strong they are as players straight out of the draft, and how much potential they have to develop in the following seasons.

Aarnau Manticores

Players Selected:

Isaiah Johnson, Catcher with +MA / +AG

Austin Bryant, Lineman with Wrestle / Sidestep

With only two picks, the Manitcores went with a fast, developmental catcher and a respectable blocking specialist. Neither of these players look amazing straight out of the draft, but time will tell if this small draft haul will develop into anything special.

Grade: C-

Aldente Scimitars

Players Selected:

Jace Sternberger, Lineman with Block / Dodge / Sidestep / Fend

J.J. Arcega-Whiteside, Catcher with +AV / +ST / Block / Tackle

Charles Omenihu, Lineman with Wrestle / Grab

Sternberger is an amazing Blocker who can take a push and reposition as necessary, and Arcega-Whiteside is one of the most skilled Blitzer/Catcher hybrids in the draft class. And while Omenihu is just an ok Blocker, the two earlier selections make this a small but strong draft class for Aldente.

Grade: B-

Altdorf Thunderbolts

Players Selected:

Greg Little, Lineman with Block / Guard / Stand Firm

Tytus Howard, Ogre with Block / Guard / Stand Firm

Kris Boyd, Catcher with +AG / Wrestle / Strip Ball / Leap

Andres Andrew, Catcher with Wrestle / +ST

The Thunderbolts held their ground in Draft 14, simply using all of thier four natural picks and landing four solid players. Howard is a great Ogre, Little is a solid Blocker, Boyd is an amazingly skills, albeit weak, safety, and Andrew is a great project Safety.

Grade: B+

Averheim River Bandits

Players Selected:

Christian Wilkins, Lineman with +AV / Block / Mighty Blow

Ben Powers, Lineman with Block / Dodge / Fend

Mack Wilson, Lineman with Block / Dodge

Clifton Lovemore, Lineman with Block / Dodge

Passed on Pick #107

Despite electing not to take their fifth pick, the River Bandits had an interesting and intriguing draft class. Wilkins is a tough blocker who can deliver retaliation, followed by three tough Lineman who can be a pain to bring down.

Grade: A-

Bel Aliad Griffins

Players Selected:

Josh Oliver, Blitzer with Dodge / Guard

Gary Guemmill, Lineman with Guard

Marquise Blair, Lineman with +MA / Wrestle / Dauntless

Morton Weighorst, Lineman with Block

No one is ever going to complain with bringing in a dificult to bring down Blitzer who supports his teammates well, a Lineman who also is a great support piece, and a Lineman skilled in hunting down larger players. Even with a somewhat boring pick in Weighorst, each pick is respectable and make sense, although no one here sticks out as amazing.

Grade: B-

Brionnian Buccaneers

Players Selected:

Porter Gustin, Lineman with +ST / Dirty Player / Pile Driver 

Oshane Ximines, Lineman with Guard

Snorri Haldorson, Blitzer with +MA / +AG

Will Harris, Blitzer with +MA / +AG

Beau Benzschawel, Lineman with Block 

Gustin is a massive player with a dirty style of play. Ximines is there to support the team. Haldorson and Harris are two swift Blitzers poised to take down anyone that is left unprotected. And Benzschawel is … a player who is better than a random walk-on. This is an amazing Class with tons of potential if they can all stay healthy.

Grade: A-

Broekwater Bruisers

Players Selected:

Arcayn’s Imaginary Friends

The Bruisers took a daring route by not making any selections in Draft 14. Bold move Cotton, let’s see if it pays off. Sadly for coach Arcayn, a draft class with no players is, by default, the worst draft class this offseason.

Grade: F-

Carcassonne Eagles

Players Selected:

Ed Oliver, Lineman with +ST / Block / Mighty Blow 

Bobby Okereke, Blitzer with Guard / Mighty Blow 

Felton Davis, Catcher with +ST

Trey Pipkins, Lineman with Mighty Blow

The Eagles continue their hoarding of massive players by picking up Ed Oliver, then taking Okereke who is a supporter to help make all the big guys harder to take down, and even Pipkins has a strong hit for being one of the smaller Eagles. Davis stands out as a development case that will need some time to see how he turns out, but this is a strong draft class for a strong team.

Grade: A-

Carroburg Crimson Cascade

Players Selected:

Yodny Cajuste, Lineman with +ST / Brawler

Chauncey Gardner-Johnson, Blitzer with +MA / Frenzy / Sidestep

Foster Moreau, Lineman with Dodge / Sidestep

Bisi Johnson, Catcher with +AG / Leap

The CCC take a big but clunky player in Cajuste, a swift and wild Blitzer in Gardner-Johnson, an elusive Moreau, and an athletic Bisi Johnson. Cajuste is the odd man out in this draft class of mobile players, but each has their strengths and can potentially support this team in wrecking havoc in the SHC North.

Grade: B+

Erengrad Vikings

Players Selected:

David Edwards, Lineman with Block / Stand Firm

At least the Vikings selected somebody , taking a player early in the third round. Edwards is a skilled player to land with pick #72, but he doesn’t stand out to be a player to develop swiftly, instead only coming in as a good blocker.

Grade: F+

Flashfurt Universe

Players Selected:

Jeffery Simmons, Lineman with +ST / Block / Defensive

Miles Sanders, Blitzer with +MA / +AG / Mighty Blow

Rashad Fenton, Catcher with Dirty Player / Sneaky Git

P.J. Johnson, Lineman with Block / Fend

Jordan Brailford, Lineman with Leader / Block

A massive blocker, a fast Blitzer with a powerful hit, a swift fouling machine, an okay Blocker, and a natural leader who can help hold a team together. The Universe put together a beautiful draft class is a wide range of talent, ready to support their team form the ground up.

Grade: A-

Fools Point Rangers

Players Selected:

Chic Charnley, Ogre with Block / Diving Tackle / Sidestep / Guard

Gunnhild Steinsdottir, Thrower with Leader / Accurate / Hail Mary Pass

Justice Hill, Blitzer with +MA / Mighty Blow / Brawler

Byron Murphy, Catcher with Block / Sidestep / Diving Tackle

An aggressive Ogre in Charnley was a great start for the Rangers. Steinsdottir is a great passer, for the teams that actually want a dedicated passer. Hill is a solid Blitzer, and Murphy is an interesting Safety option. None of these players should be underestimated, but the Rangers shouldn’t overestimate them either. The Rangers will need to deploy a well thought out game plan to make the best use of these players.

Grade: B+

Grenzburg Greenskins

Players Selected:

Kaleb McGary, Lineman with +AV / Wrestle / Defensive

Dwayne Haskins, Thrower with +AV / Block / Running Pass

Paul Adams, Lineman with +AV / Tackle / Brawler

Hunter Renfrow, Catcher with +AG / Sprint / Sure Hands

The Greenskins seem to love tough players. McGary and Adams are tough blockers, and Adams has some talent is fighting back. Haskins is one of the toughest throwers in the draft and is surprisingly swift when passing. The only outlier is Renfrow, who is a fast runner that can extend for a score with proper blocking to lead the way. The only concern is the lack of blocking ability in McGary and Adams, who may struggle to stay standing.

Grade: C+

Irrana Avalanche

Players Selected:

Jezail dan Luthar, Blitzer with Mighty Blow / Tackle / Guard 

Trevon Wesco, Lineman with Wrestle / Mighty Blow 

Jalen Jelks, Lineman with Mighty Blow / Frenzy / Dauntless

Vosean Joesph, Lineman with Block

Jezail dan Luthar is a model Blitzer that any DLE team would love to have. Wesco is an interesting pick that is able to hit hard but also pull opponents to the turf. Jelks is an aggressive player able to take down bigger players but lacking fundamentals, and Joesph is the exact opposite having solid fundamentals but to uniquie talent to speak of. In all, this is a decent and aggressive draft class.

Grade: B+

Kemperbad Knights

Players Selected:

Josh Allen, Blitzer with +AV / Mighty Blow / Guard

Matt Redfeld, Thrower with Wrestle / Guard

Michael Dogbe, Lineman with Kick / Block

Passed on Pick #124

Allen is a tough fighting Blitzer able to lead in an attack, Redfield is a multi-talented player able to assist, take down, and run the ball. Dobge rounds off this trio with a kicking talent and is able to hold his own when blocking. But then following that all up with a passed late pick? It’s an understandable choice, but the draft class is thinner because of it.

Grade: C+

Kislev Cardinals

Players Selected:

Marquise “Hollywood” Brown, Catcher with +AG / Block / Leap

A.J. Brown, Catcher with +MA / +AG / +ST

Anthony Nelson, Block / Pro

Darryl Johnson, Block / Jump Up

Hollywood is a swift, talented receiver able to be a solid scoring threat. A.J. Brown also complements him with a fast, strong prototype build. Finally you have Nelson and Johnson who can help bring flair to this team, despite being less promising. This results in a respectable draft class.

Grade: B

Los Cabos Marauders

Players Selected:

Devin White, Blitzer with +MA / +AG / Tackle / Mighty Blow

Dexter Lawrence, Ogre with +ST / +AV / Block

Jonah Williams, Lineman with Block / Guard / Fend

Jake Bailey, Thrower with Dirty Player / Sneaky Git 

Khari Willis, Blitzer with Mighty Blow / Pile Driver / Dirty Player

Now this is how you draft a team! Devin White will be a menace assaulting whomever he set his eyes on and Lawrence is a monster of an Ogre. Add on Williams as a skilled Blocking and Supporting player, Bailey as a talented fouler, and Willis who excels at targeted removal and you have an amazing draft class all other teams would be jealous of.

Grade: A+

Lyonesse Patriots

Players Selected:

Renell Wren, Lineman with +ST / +AV / Arm Bar

Taylor Rapp, Blitzer with +AG / Mighty Blow

Clayton Thorson, Thrower with Block / Dodge / Cannoneer

Donovan Wilson, Lineman with Block / Tackle / Strip Ball

Nick Scott, Lineman with Wrestle / Strip Ball 

Chris Slayton, Lineman with Kick / Block 

Dakota Allen, Lineman with Leader / Block 

The Patriots seems to be prioritizing quantity over quality. Wren is a big, tough guy with little talent outside of his size, Rapp is a slippery Blitzer able to hit like a brick, Thorson is a promising runner who has a talent for passing deep, and Wilson is promising Blitzer who can force a ball out of the hands of less skill players. But between Scott, Slayton, and Allen, you have players who could potentially develop into stars, but they will require a lot of effort to succeed.

Grade: B+

Marienburg Foxes

Players Selected:

L.J. Collier, Lineman with Block / Mighty Blow / Frenzy

Dre’Mont Jones, Lineman with Wrestle / Mighty Blow

Christian Miller, Lineman with Wrestle / Jump Up

Joejuan Williams, Catcher with Block / Sidestep / Diving Tackle / On The Ball

Jaylon Ferguson, Blitzer with Frenzy / Mighty Blow

This is another exciting draft class to see. Collier and Ferguson are aggressive players able to assault anywhere they are required. Jones and Miller are good at blocking up opponents. But Williams is the potential star here, able to get on the ball quickly and slip his way up field, or work his way onto a ball carrier and draw attention away from advancing the ball.

Grade: A

Middenheim Classics

Players Selected:

Jawaan Taylor, Lineman with Block / Guard / Defensive 

Johnathan Abram, Blitzer with +MA / Mighty Blow / Frenzy / Tackle

Rosco P. Coltrane, Lineman with Wrestle

Jonathan Ledbetter, Lineman with Wrestle

Abram is clearly meant to be the Superb Owl Champions’ upcoming star Blitzer, with Taylor as a strong supporter. After that, you just have Coltrane and Ledbetter who have a unique playstyle in DLE. Could this be the start of a new shift in game plans across the league, or an risky experiment by the Classics?

Grade: B+

Mordheim Legion

Players Selected:

Edric Artair, Thrower with Accurate / Cannoneer / Block / Dump-Off

Tommy Turner, Blitzer with +MA / Mighty Blow / Tackle / Juggernaut

Ryan Davis, Catcher with Dirty Player 

Darius Slayton, Catcher with +MA / +AG / Fumblerooski

Artair is an interesting selection so early on in the draft that makes you question if the Legion could have waited to pick him later on at #43. Instead, they use the pick to rectify the decision by selecting one of the most promising players on the board in Turner. While Turner is the most promising player in this draft class, Artair has the potential to produce amazing plays. Davis is a clear attempt at building a fouler, but Slayton is a strange pick. His has the speed, but with the weird talent of purposely fumbling the ball when making plays.

Grade: B-

Nuln Gunners

Players Selected:

Dalton Risner, Lineman with Block / Guard / Sidestep

Blake Cashman, Blitzer with +AG

John Cominsky, Lineman with Dodge / Sidestep / Fend

Sutton Smith, Lineman with Wrestle / Sidestep / Dauntless

Passed on Pick #105

Risner and Cominsky are clearly players intended to block, but Risner lacks the agility and Cominsky lacks the grit and support. Add on Cashman who is a purely developmental Blitzer, Smith with a strange set of skills, and an unused early fourth round pick and you have a strange draft class that seems more destined to go on  the Line of Slaughter rather than develop.

Grade: C

Praag Grizzlies

Players Selected:

Teresa Benelli, Lineman with Brawler / +ST / +ST

Jahlani Tavai, Blitzer with +AV / Mighty Blow 

Cece Jefferson, Lineman with Mighty Blow / Brawler / Pro

Aleksy Krôll, Catcher with Guard / Block / Sidestep

Since the draft began, war rooms across the league wondered where Benelli’s monstrous frame would be picked. The Grizzles answered that question by picking her at #6. But after, we see the Grizzlies follow her selecting with a tough and hard hitting Tavai, another hard hitter lacking the basics in Jefferson, and a surprisingly amazing support player in Krôll (who some hoe managed to slip into the fourth round). The Grizzles took a calculated risk early on and backed it up with great value picks later in the draft.

Grade: B+

Reikland Wreckers

Players Selected:

Kyler Murray, Thrower with +AG / +MA / Block / Dodge

Ross Pierschbacher, Lineman with Block / Defensive

Dontavius Russell, Lineman with Block / Thick Skull / +AV / Pile Driver

Damien Harris, Blitzer with Dodge / Guard 

Jalen Hurd, Catcher with +ST / +AV

A generation runner draft talent in Murray. The thick skinned Russell, and the Blocking specialists Pierschbacher and Harris. Finally, the prototype Hurd able to develop into a future talent. Some of these talents may be lacking some key skills, but five promising players means this class has the potential to build up the Wreckers for the future.

Grade: A

San Luis 49ers

Players Selected:

Darnell Savage, Lineman with +MA / +AG / Block / Tackle

Bobby Evans, Lineman with Guard

Cole Holcomb, Lineman with Block / Tackle / Strip Ball 

Klein ‘Haze’ Damias, Catcher with Block / Dauntless / Tackle

Sheldrick Redwine, Lineman with +MA / +AG

Savage is a Lineman who has the talent to rival some Blitzers, Redwine has the potential to become just as talented, if not more, then Savage. The take into account Evans as a prototype support man, Holcomb’s talents at sacking ball carriers, and Damias as a potential talented safety and you have anther draft class with immediate talent and lots of future potential.

Grade: A

Skar Bay Sharks

Players Selected:

Acwel Rinc, Blitzer with +ST / Tackle / Thick Skull

Zach Allen, Lineman with Block / Mighty Blow / Pro

Rich Gannon, Thrower with Block / +AV / Accurate / On The Ball

Jaquan Johnson, Lineman with Dirty Player / Block

Jordan Jones, Lineman with +MA / Frenzy / Juggernaut

Trace McSorely, Thrower with +MA / Block / FumbleRooski

The Skarks draft started strong with Rinc and Allen as talented assaulters and Gannon as a great Passer. But after, there is Johnson with the basis but also chooses to play dirty, Jones who is fast, aggressive, but lacks discipline, and McSorely who is a fast runner with that weird knack of purposely fumbling the ball. This Draft class has some immediate impact, but the future development is questionable and depends completely on the coaching.

Grade: B+

Talabheim Sluggers

Players Selected:

Ben Banogu, Blitzer with +AV / Mighty Blow / Frenzy 

Ulysees Gilbert, Lineman with Block / Tackle / Leader

Gerri Green, Lineman with +MA / Block / Frenzy

Iman Lewis-Marshall, Catcher with Block / Sidestep / Diving Tackle

It was Round 2, Pick 47 overall when the Sluggers finally began their draft. They started with a bang, committing to Banogu’s talents as a respected Blitzer. Gilbert followed as a natural Leader with the ability to attack, then Green as a more aggressive attacker, and ended with Lewis-Marshall as an aggressive safety build.

Grade: A-

Ubersreik Unicorns

Players Selected:

Thomas Leboucher, Blitzer with +ST / Tackle / Mighty Blow / Frenzy

Juan Thornhill, Blitzer with +MA / Mighty Blow / Frenzy 

Sean Bunting, Catcher with +MA / Sprint / Sure Feet 

The Unicorns had very little draft capital when they declared a restructure. And despite this, they ended up with two amazing Blitzers is the number one selection huge Leboucher and the faster Thornhill and a blazing fast receiver and one turn touchdown specialist Bunting.

Grade: B+

Verezzo Razorbacks

Players Selected:

Albert Huggins, Lineman with +ST / Shadowing / Arm Bar 

Israel Trever, Lineman with +AG / Wrestle

Parris Campbell, Catcher with +MA / +AG / Safe Pair of Hands

Max Scharping, Ogre with Block / Guard / Break Tackle

Being the last team to pick a big Lineman or Blitzer has its drawbacks. In the Razorbacks’ case, it’s Huggins, whose massive frame comes with shaky talent and a large price tag. Beyond the questionable round 1 pick, Trever is a strange prototype that we will have to see how he turns out, Campbell who is fast and swift, and a great late pick Ogre in Scharping. But the awkward picks in Huggins and Trever makes this draft class just weird.

Grade: C

Volksgrad White Wolves

Players Selected:

Chase Winovich, Blitzer with +AG / +AV / Tackle

Demarcus Christmas, Lineman with Dirty Player / Sneaky Git

Two pick. The White Wolves only had two picks and made them count. Winovich is a talented Blitzer to help supplement the Wolves, and Christmas is highly skilled as gifting kicks to players on the ground. While Winovich needs time to prove his worth, this is a respectable draft class with only two picks.

Grade: C-

Waldenhof Thunder

Players Selected:

Mike Edwards, Blitzer with Dodge / Guard / Sidestep

Ho Smith Jr., Catcher with Dirty Player / Sneaky Git / Shadowing

Andrew Wingard, Blitzer with Wrestle / Tackle

Joe Jackson, Lineman with Wrestle / Dauntless

An amazing Support Blocker? Check. A fast fouler with upside? Check. A talented player who excels at taking opponents down? Check. A stoic lineman willing to take down large bodies? Check. The Thunder probably has the most well rounded draft class this offseason with tons of potential.

Grade: B+

Wolfenburg Wolfskins

Players Selected:

Quinnen Williams, Lineman with Block / Guard / Mighty Blow

David Montgomery, Blitzer with Guard / Mighty Blow

Lamont Gaillard, Lineman with Dirty Player / Sure Feet / Block

Azeez Al-Shaair, Lineman with Diving Tackle

It is clear the Wolfskins’ plan is to mix proven talent with unique talents. Williams and Montgomery present as Blitzer/Support Blocker hybrids who can work in tandem to take out thier foes. But moving into the third and fourth rounds, we saw the Wolfskins take semi-talented foot specialist Gailard and the raw Al-Shaair. The first two selections make this class respectable, and allow the wiggle room to experiemnt with taking Gailard and Al’Shaair.

Grade: B