Posts Tagged ‘NFL Draft’

Measureables: Height: 6’7”  | Weight: 305 lbs.  | Position: Left Tackle

Pass Protection: Extremely tall and lean. Has 35 inch arms and 10 inch hands. Possesses good athleticism. Isn’t overly thick in the lower body. Will need to gain some extra girth there at the next level. Does a good job of extending his arms, locking out his elbows, keeping pass rushers off of his frame, and pushing them behind the quarterback. Has a tendency to drop his head upon contact, which leaves him susceptible to the swim move and push pull move. Has a good kick-slide, but it can be approved upon. Can sit down and anchor at the point of attack. Can also reset himself and anchor after initially being overwhelmed. Does a good job at handling both speed and power rushers. Foot work is not technically sound, but it is improving.

Run Blocking: More of a finesse offensive tackle than a power one. Will not overwhelm defenders with strength. Doesn’t show the ability to be able to drive defenders and eliminate them from the play. Is more about working his technique to create advantages for himself. Can swing his hips around and open up holes on the interior of the line and seal off the perimeter for outside runs. Keeps his hands inside and plays with good leverage and balance. Has the athleticism to reach the second level and get a body on defenders.

Awareness: Above average awareness. Knows who to attack when asked to make a block out in space. Needs to improve on keeping his head up, to recognize blitzes, stunts, and twists.

Toughness: Not the mauler type. Doesn’t posses a mean streak. Isn’t the strongest kid, but does a good job of working his technique and hanging in there against brawnier players.

Intangibles: Very solid character. Decided to major in Bio Chemistry instead of majoring in something easy to get by in college. Plans on doing cancer research once his NFL career is over. Plays with passion and heart. 2010 AP All-American Third Team.

Overall Stock: Right now, it’s a toss up as to who is the best offensive tackle in the 2011 NFL Draft. Each one of the top five guys has a claim for that title. Anthony Castonzo is an athletic guy that can come right into the NFL and start from day one. Im not certain it will be on the left side, but he can surely play the right side. He has all the tools to be a solid offensive tackle for 10 plus years. However, he does have some things to work on, such as footwork and head placement. His body also needs to do so more maturing. There is room for growth, and he’ll need at least 10 more pounds to be effective at the next level. Expect Castaozo to come off the board in round one. Only time will tell how high or low he goes. It all depends on his combine and offseason interviews. 

NFL Comparison: Charles Brown

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#7 DE/OLB, Robert Quinn (6’5 270 lbs.) – North Carolina Tarheels

 

Pass Rush Skills: Quick first step. Explosive off the edge. Can flatten out and get around the edge to the quarterback. Long arms make it difficult for tackles to get their hands on him. Uses a rip move pretty effectively. Excellent closing burst. Has a knack for jarring the football loose from the quarterbacks hands. Had outstanding sack production as a sophomore in 2009, but didn’t play in 2010 due to a NCAA suspension. Needs to develop more pass rushing moves, especially counters.

Versus the run: Does a good job of playing the run, especially outside runs. Recognizes them quickly and attacks the ball carrier. Holding the point of attack is average. Does a good job at shedding blockers with his long arms, but needs to recognize inside runs better. Can occasionally get swallowed up and pancaked my large tackles. Needs to get a little bit more violent with his hands. Excellent tackler. Has some pop to his hits. Wraps up well.

Versatility: Very versatile player. Can play rush defensive end and is athletic enough to stand up and play outside linebacker in the 3-4 defense.

Instincts/Motor: Good instincts but still needs to develop in this area. Sniffs out screens and misdirection plays, but needs to be better with recognizing the inside runs and finding the ball. Top notch motor. Goes hard after quarterbacks and ball carriers. Is relentless in this area.

Intangibles: Received the ACC’s Brian Piccolo Award in 2007 as league’s most courageous player. Was suspended in 2010 for improper dealings with an agent. Seems to be a humble kid who got caught up in the wrong things. Coaches and teammates speak highly of him.

Overall Stock: He will have to answer questions about his character and show scouts and coaches that he stayed in shape during his suspension. If all goes well, he will be one of the first defensive ends drafted in the 2010 draft. He has amazing athleticism and is scheme diverse. I look for a 3-4 team to draft him, stand him up and let him get after the quarterback. If his numbers from 2009 (11 sacks, 19 tackles for loss, and 6 forced fumbles) are any indication of what’s to come, some team is going to be really happy come April. 

NFL Comparison: DeMarcus Ware

Call me crazy but I didn’t think there was anyway that Andrew Luck, Travis Lewis, and Ryan Broyles would go back to school. I mean, all three have received great grades in regards to the draft. Andrew Luck would have been the sure fire number one pick. I guess it goes to show you that education is more important to some people. Still, you have to wonder what’s going through these players minds. In all likeliness, there will be a rookie salary cap in the 2012 NFL Draft. Millions of dollars will be lost. Also, there’s always the possibility of not playing to expectations or getting injured. Look at Matt Leinart. He won the Heisman and National Championship in 2004. He didn’t strike the iron while it was hot, went back to school the following year, and lost millions of dollars in the following draft. He went from being considered the first overall pick, to being picked 10th overall. All is not bad though. Getting your education is great. It shows kids that there is more to life than football and money. When there is no more football, what do you have left? Your education. Kudos to Andrew Luck, Travis Lewis, and Ryan Broyles on their decision. Hopefully all works out well.

Alright, so I have a special treat for you guys. Yesterday, I had the opportunity to do a Q&A with National Football Post writer, Wes Bunting. I asked him a few questions about the 2011 NFL Draft and about some of the players in it. Check it out and I hope you enjoy!

Q: The perception out there is that the 2011 NFL Draft is extremely weak. Is that indeed the case? Where is this draft class strong, and where is it weak?
A: No, I mean ill say the senior class is weak overall, but I think because of that we’re going to see a ton of juniors come out. I think that will really streghtnen it up. It’ll make the seniors more of the depth part of the draft. I’d say it’s deep at the wide receiver position, at the cornerback position and defensive line position. And I’d say it’s relatively weak in the fact that there’s no real blue chip guys. Tyron Smith from USC could be the one, but at offensive tackle there’s not a real blue chip guy. Linebacker, it looks pretty weak. Running back, outside of Mark Ingram and Mikel Leshour it doesn’t look like there’s too many guys that can come in and carry the load.

Q: With half of the teams in the NFL running the 3-4, who are the best prospects that fit that scheme? Particularly outside linebacker and nose tackle.
A: Oh that’s a good question. I think Robert Quinn, hes up there. Even though he hasn’t played all year I think he’s one of the best guys. Von Miller from Texas A&M and Justin Houston. I think they are the three guys that have the ability to consistently fire off the edge, flatten out around the corner and make plays on the quarterback. Those are the top three guys right now. Some nose tackles, I think Phil Taylor from Baylor, he’s a former Penn State guy. He has the potential to play inside. He just needs to learn to play with a little bit better pad level. He’s a big guy. Jerrell Powe, he has the ability to eat up blocks inside. Kendrick Ellis from Hampton could be that guy. Those are probably the three guys I would choose. Oh, and Sione Fua from Stanford, he’s another one.

Q: Who are some guys that no one is talking about? Players that once they reach the NFL, will make an impact and name for themselves.
A: Some guys I like, Steven Friday the pass rusher from Virginia Tech. Im a big fan of his game. Curtis Marsh, the cornerback from Utah State. He’s a guy I like a lot. Pat Delvin from Deleware, he’s the quarterback there, he’s a guy I like a lot. Those are the three guys that I am higher on than most id say.

Q: So here’s a good one for you. Who are your personal favorite players in this years draft, and why?
A: Personal favorites, hmmm. You hit me with a good one there. Maybe Danny Watkins from Baylor. He’s a guy that I really like. He has a great story. 26 year old comedian, former rugby and hockey player. Three years of football experience. He also was a fire fighter in Kelowna. He’s really blossomed into a really nice player. Drake Nevis from LSU. I like him a lot. Just because he plays the game with such bad intentions. He’s an angry player. And I gotta give love to the fullbacks. I love Marecic from Stanford. Im a big fan of Anthony Sherman from Connecticut. I like those two full backs.

Q: I’m a Chiefs fan, so I have to sneak in a question for Chiefs Nation. The other day I tweeted you and asked who are the best players for the Chiefs in the draft. You responded with JJ Watt, Akeem Ayers, and Marcell Dareus. Why those three? What would they bring to the Chiefs?
A: Well Watt and Dareus they’re the guys u can put at the 5 technique. They can hold the point of attack and they make everyone around them better. Akeem Ayers is a guy who gives you some versatility. He can play inside but I think he gives you the ability to rush off the edge as a pass rusher and create negative plays, so that if you’re a 3-4 defense, it’s really great to create negative plays and get into nickel situations and rush the passer. Plus Watt and Dareus have the ability to kick inside to the 3 technique in nickel situations and rush the passer.

Alright folks, there you have it. Some great answers by Mr. Bunting on the 2011 NFL Draft. Everyone, make sure to swing by Wes Bunting’s column, The Scouting Department. There is a lot of great content there. Also be sure to follow him on twitter at @WesBunting.

Oh yes you do. One of the growing trends in todays NFL is, character receiving a greater emphasis and being placed above a players talents. Back in the 1990’s and early 2000’s, players could get away with murder and not have to bare any consequences. Now, players are flagged for excessive celebrations and suspended for any missteps off the field. Since Commissioner Roger Goodell took place in office, he has done a good job of holding players (not named Bret Farve), and teams accountable. He has also made a push to change certain league rules, such as touchdown celebrations. I don’t agree with everything he has done so far, but I do applaud him for trying to clean up a game that had become riddled with filth.

NCAA players looking to join the elite in the NFL need to get with the program and clean up their act. No longer will teams tolerate misbehavior. No matter how talented you are, some teams will pass on you in the draft, and you will in turn lose a few million dollars because of it. Recent history gives us proof of this. In 2010, Dez Bryant entered the draft with the stigma of being a diva and having a few off the field problems. His talent was top 5, but where was he selected, 24th to the Dallas Cowboys. Another example of teams looking towards quality character guys is the Kansas City Chiefs and the Atlanta Falcons. In the 2010 draft, out of the 7 players the Chiefs drafted, 6 of them were team captains. The Falcons took a similar stance in the 2010 draft and drafted 4 team captains.

There are a few highly touted prospects who will be available in the 2011 draft, that have some baggage. The entire North Carolina team was suspended due to violating team and NCAA rules. Florida shut down corner, Janoris Jenkins was arrested in 2009 and charged with resisting arrest without violence. Speedy receiver, Titus Young has been suspended numerous times for his off the field issues and flagged for excessive celebrations. Biletnikoff winner, Justin Blackmon was arrested in 2010 for DUI. Iowa defensive end, Adrian Clayborn pled quilty to disorderly conduct in 2010 and was originally charged with assault after punching a cab driver. Pitt WR, Jonathan Baldwin recently threw his quarterback and coaches under the bus, in a rant about how he wont be back for his senior season. He was also arrested and charged with misdemeanor indecent assault, summary harassment and summary disorderly conduct. The list goes on and on.

All I can say to these players is, good luck with your background checks and pre draft interviews. To the college players not eligible for the 2010 draft, learn from others mistakes and keep on a straightened arrow. Millions of dollars are at stake. To the teams of the NFL, thank you for finally setting an example for the public, and showing them that character does matter.