Archive for February, 2013

Top 25 Ranking (Post Combine)

The scouting combine has come and gone and with players moving up and down in terms of their draft stock I feel like it’s about time to show my post combine rankings for the 2013 class.

1. Luke Joeckel, OT, Texas A&M

2. Sharieff Flyod, DT, Florida

3. Chance Warmack, OG, Alabama

4. Jarvis Jones, OLB, Georgia

5. Dee Milliner, CB, Alabama

6. Ezikiel Ansah, DE, BYU

7. Dion Jordon, DE, Oregon

8. Eric Fisher, OT, Central Michigan

9. Bjoern Werner, DE, Florida State

10. Star Lotulelei, DT, Utah

11. Barkevious Mingo, DE, LSU

12. Lane Johnson, OT, Oklahoma

13. Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington

14. Cordarrelle Patterson, WR, Tennessee

15. Damontre Moore, DE/OLB, Texas A&M

16. Johnthan Cooper, OG, North Carolina

17. Sheldon Richardson, DT, Missouri

18. Tavon Austin, WR, West Virginia

19. Kenny Vaccaro, S, Texas

20. Matt Barkley, QB, USC

21. Manti Te’o , ILB, Notre Dame

22. Datone Jones, UCLA, DE

23. Zavier Gooden, OLB, Missouri

24. Justin Hunter, WR, Tennessee

25. Xavier Rhodes, CB, Florida State

I am currently working on a mock with explanations as of right now and should have it out some time next week. 

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Desmond Trufant

College: Washington

Position: Cornerback

Height: 5-11

Weight: 184 lbs

Position Rank: 4

Projected Round: Late 1st to mid-2nd round

The talented Washington Cornerback, Desmond Trufant is considered to be one of the top defensive backs in this year’s draft. Trufant who has two brothers already in the NFL, Marcus with Seattle and Isaiah with the Jets, had an outstanding week at the senior bowl and wasn’t too bad during the game neither. He was a first team all-Pac-12 defensive back this year, and is definitely one of the most experienced cornerbacks coming out of this year’s draft with his 47 starts at Washington. He is competitive and corner, who will get physical with wide receivers at the line of scrimmage no matter the size disparity.

 

Plays on the ball

Desmond Trufant in 47 games only had, 6 interceptions which for a Pac 12 DB where the passing game is the life and blood of so many teams in the conference, is really disappointing. He is a very passive corner who tends to play the receiver over making plays for the ball.

 

Vs. the Run

Trufant, from what have seen of him, recognizes run/pass quickly. He is one of the better corners in this year’s draft in with this recognition. He doesn’t shy away from making tackles in run support and will fight way through blocks and does a nice job of fighting under blocks to blow up screen passes or keep contain on outside runs.

Experience and Instincts

If there is one positive about playing in 47 games in college, it’s the experience you gain over time. From his tape as a freshman to his senior year, you could tell the dramatic change in his instincts. He also is very good at timing his jumps and defending the ball from its highest point from the wide out.

Conclusion

Overall I could see Turfant going into the Top 25 if he has an outstanding combine and pro day. Right now Trufant looks like he’s pegged into going at the end of day 1 or a early day 2 pick. Trufant is amongst the top corners in a draft filled with good quality depth and talent on the defensive side of the ball.  

Manti Te’o  Scouting Report.

Measurables

Height: 6 -1

Weight: 248

40 Time: 4.75

Manti Te’o vs Miami 

Manti Te’o vs. Stanford

Strengths:

  • + Plays the Game with Passion
  • + Smart
  • + Can read an offense pre-play
  • + Can follow the flow and attack downhill
  • + Great Leadership
  • +  Solid Tackler
  • + Good Blitzer

Weaknesses:

  • – Takes bad angles to the ball
  • –  Not elite in coverage against backs and TE
  • -Can get engulfed by lineman
  • –   Worry about his speed
  • –  Mental health?

Summary – Te’o is one of the more polarizing players in the country. What he lacks in raw athletic ability he makes up for in amazing instincts and leadership.  When you watch game film of Te’o you realize he is always around the ball, Te’o had 7 Interceptions this past season and when you see those interceptions a lot of them are Te’o being in the right place at the right time and make an amazing play on the ball. Manti can be exploited in coverage; he got lost in the NC game vs. Alabama and allowed a TD to Michael Williams. He also got totally destroyed by Alabama’s line (as did the rest of the of Notre Dame) which could be a worry because that is the caliber of OL he will be playing the NFL.

Overall – Te’o is a solid LB, he won’t be a stud in the league but he has the ability to play SAM and MIKE in the 43 and play ILB in the 34. I don’t see him being as effective as a 43 WILL.  Te’o obviously has some other issues to workout, the whole cat fishing and fake girlfriend cover up is a red flag. How he explains that in interviews will be interesting to say the least.  I think Te’o is a good LB but is not the elite LB he was built up to be in the collegiate ranks. That being said he should still be  at least a 2nd round pick

Draft Value –   Late 1st to Mid 2nd.

NFL Comparison – Perry Riley LB Washington Redskins

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Kennan Allen

College: California

Position: Wide Receiver

Height: 6-3

Weight: 210 lbs

Position Rank: 1

Projected Round: Top 15

Kennan Allen is my favorite offensive player this year and may be tied for my favorite player of this year’s draft next to BYU defensive end Ezekiel Ansah. I have followed closely Kennan Allen’s career ever since he was a freshman and he quickly become one of my favorite players in the country. He is an absolutely great route runner and if you combined his quickness, strength, and size he is an extremely lethal receiver at getting yards after the catch. He has the vertical ability, hands, and concentration to catch the ball at its lowest to its highest points. I’m assuming that you must be thinking that if this guy could do it all then why isn’t he getting as much hype as a AJ Green or Julio Jones coming out (by no means am I comparing him to those 2 coming out). Well there are many answers for this, one was that he missed the final 3 games of the season due to knee injury. Another one was that he had to deal with a pretty dire quarterback situation at Cal, where his brother, Zac Maynard, was less than stellar for most of the season for a pretty bad and banged up Cal team.

If Allen’s knee is fine from the injury he suffered in the latter part of the year is fine and if he has a great combine like I am predicting him to be, I could see this Allen securing his spot as the top wideout coming out of this year’s draft and possibly a top 10 selection.

Speed and quickness

From the numerous games I have seen of Kennan Allen, there was always something that separated him from other 6-3 wideouts, and that was his speed and quickness. He has a decent release of the line of scrimmage and knows how to use his feet to get open. And once he catches the ball he is always a threat to gain 10-20 yards more. He was often used in screens in a lot while at Cal for this reason.

Hands

Allen has dependable but not perfect Aj Green type hands. He may drop a few here and there due to a lack of concentration, a problem that many thought Julio Jones had coming out. Look out how its turned out for him.

Deep ball ability

Because of Maynard not having the arm that most college quarterbacks have, Kennan Allen rarely ran deep patterns and when he was involved in one, the ball was usually under thrown. He certainly has the speed and vertical ability to have this part of the game be one of his strengths but this will virtually remain an unknown part of Allen’s game until he’s in the NFL because of the lack of film of him actually running a deep pattern.

Conclusion

Brandon Marshall is probably the best comparison for Kennan Allen as both are big bodied receivers with the ability to make defenders miss with their feet and get yards after the catch with speed and quickness. I might be overrating Allen in the eyes of some, but if feel like if Kennan Allen falls to the right team, I could see him being one of the best receivers

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Nigel Malone

College: Kansas State

Position: Cornerback

Height: 5-10

Weight: 185 lbs

Projected Round (As of now): late 4th to 5th round

Nigel Malone was one of the players that I had highlighted on before the start of last year’s college football season during our Top 5 Under the Radar College Players video a while back. He lead the conference in interceptions with 7 two years ago while getting another 5 this year. He is California native spent two seasons at the junior college level and, although he isn’t a big fan of the Midwest (which he has made public several times), he decided to transfer to Kansas State over New Mexico. He was one of 4 Kent State players to go to earn invitations to postseason all-star games this year as linebacker Arthur Brown and wide receiver Chris Harper will play in the Senior Bowl and he and quarterback/tight end/h-back Collin Klein went to the 88th annual east west shrine game where he really rose his stock during that week.

Many scouts reported that he was great in man to man coverage batting down passes all week and shutting receivers down. And during the game he jumped right in front of a pass for pick 6 making the score 21-3 earning him, the game’s most outstanding player on defense. He is a bit undersized but that doesn’t stop him from getting in the faces of bigger and stronger receivers. He’s a very scrappy and tough player that many players would love to add to their team. But because of his size I feel he’s best suited as a slot corner at the next level.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HmFi9bZ23yY

Malone vs TCU

Man on Man coverage  

Malone, like pretty much the whole K-state team, had a tough time during the Fiesta Bowl as he was beat more times than not during the game when he was in zone and at times man. After re-watching the shrine game I would say that Malone was truly one of the best defensive backs there and showed why he is a great man to man defensive back, which teams like the Steelers, Ravens, Packers, and the Jets can use because of their zone blitz schemes.

 

Ball Awareness

Malone possess above average instincts on the ball. He always seems to be around it at all times even during running plays as there for sweeps on his side. He is more a of a ball hawk then playing it safe type of player which for some schemes and coaches could be troublesome.

Slot coverage

From what little I have seen of Malone in the slot, I have to say he’s looks fine in there. He usually played outside the numbers where he was at time exposed by bigger and faster receivers.

Overall conclusion

Malone was also coached by one of college football’s best coaches Bill Snyder who has a knack of getting his players pro ready. I could see Malone stock rise even more if he has a good pro day and combine to the early mid rounds.

ImageEzekiel “Ziggy” Ansah

College: BYU

Position: Defensive End

Height: 6-5

Weight: 274 lbs

Position Rank: 2

Projected Round: Top 10

Tape of him against Bosie State

Tape of him against Georgia State

I have found my man crush for this year’s draft class, and like my other man crushes from the past 3 classes, it’s a defensive end. Ezkiel Ansah converted to the Mormon faith and became decided to go to BYU. He wanted to be basketball player and tried out for the team but was cut from both the 2008 and 2009 teams. He then set his sights on to track successfully made the team where he ran a 10.91 in the 100 and then a 21.89. He eventually decided on playing football despite some of the cautions he had for the game. After sitting his first year and playing on special teams his second year, he finally cracked the starting line up his senior year and made his impact felt. He had 62 total tackles, 13 going for a loss, including 4.5 sacks. And then at the Senior bowl, after having a so so week, he absolutely dominated in the game constantly giving tackles hell. After the strong performance he had, his stock, in the minds of many, mine included, sky rocketed.

Athleticism

For those who are in track, running a 21.89 in the 200 is pretty darn good, espically at 240-270 lbs. Ansah is coming in as one of the most athletic defensive ends to come out since Jason Pierre Paul. I can see him easily having Vernon Gholston type day at the NFL combine.

Raw ability

Watching tape of him at BYU, you can tell that this guy still has a lot to learn about the game but definitely has the raw potential/ability to be among the top of the league as one of its best defensive ends. If he is open to coaching from his NFL coaches, Ansah has what it takes to be special.

Size

At 6-5 265+, Ansah has the stout size to play as defensive end in the 4-3 but also has the athleticism to stand up and play in the 3-4 even though I would recommend a team due that due to his inexperience in pass coverage.

Conclusion

I love Ansah and his athleticism he brings to the game. His power and speed is something that if he can harness and refine at the NFL level can be very lethal to QBs and lineman everywhere. Plus as a Nigerian-American I love to see Africans make it in the