PDA

View Full Version : Pre-Senior Bowl Rankings


ThePudge
01-04-2011, 08:36 PM
This is the first board I've posted this year, but I've been updating it & adjusting it the last few months. Things will obviously change later this month and especially in February-March. This is a raw look at where I see players at this point in the process. My next update will come after the Senior Bowl. To keep these rankings organized, I'm going to break them into three sections:


I. Top 25 Seniors
II. Top 25 Underclassmen
III. Big Board (Top 100)


I break it up so it's easier on your eyes and you can more closely search for certain players. Questions, Comments, or Feedback of any kind is encouraged. Obviously people will disagree, but ask me and I'll explain where I'm coming from. Enjoy!


I. Top 25 Seniors

1. Prince Amukamara – CB – Nebraska
2. Ryan Kerrigan – DE – Purdue
3. Cameron Jordan – DE – California
4. Jake Locker – QB – Washington
5. Von Miller – OLB – Texas A&M
6. Anthony Castonzo – OT – Boston College
7. Cameron Heyward – DE – Ohio State
8. Derek Sherrod – OT – Mississippi State
9. Nate Solder – OT - Colorado
10. Allen Bailey – DE – Miami
11. Adrian Clayborn – DE – Iowa
12. Jimmy Smith – CB – Colorado
13. Bruce Carter – OLB – North Carolina
14. Marcus Cannon – OL - TCU
15. Gabe Carimi – OT - Wisconsin
16. Drake Nevis – DT – LSU
17. Stephen Paea – DT – Oregon State
18. Quan Sturdivant – ILB – North Carolina
19. Christian Ballard – DE - Iowa
20. Lance Kendricks – TE – Wisconsin
21. Stefan Wisniewski – C – Penn State
22. DeMarcus Love – OT – Arkansas
23. Leonard Hankerson – WR – Miami
24. Mike Pouncey – OG – Florida
25. Jerel Jernigan – WR - Troy


II. Top 25 Underclassmen

- This board does not include all underclassmen necessarily and players that have already committed to returning to school will not appear on this list. For a list of players that have officially declared check out DraftCountdown's home page.

1. Andrew Luck – QB – Stanford*
2. A.J. Green – WR - Georgia
3. Da’Quan Bowers – DE - Clemson
4. Patrick Peterson – CB - LSU
5. Cameron Newton – QB - Auburn
6. Nick Fairley – DT – Auburn
7. Julio Jones – WR – Alabama
8. Marcell Dareus – DL – Alabama
9. Robert Quinn – DE – North Carolina
10. Justin Blackmon – WR – Oklahoma State*
11. Mark Ingram – RB – Alabama
12. J.J. Watt – DE – Wisconsin
13. Justin Houston – OLB – Georgia
14. Michael Floyd – WR – Notre Dame
15. Ryan Mallett – QB – Arkansas
16. Ryan Broyles – WR – Oklahoma
17. Tyron Smith – OT – USC*
18. Akeem Ayers – LB – UCLA
19. Blaine Gabbert – QB – Missouri
20. Kyle Rudolph – TE – Notre Dame
21. Brandon Harris – CB – Miami
22. Jonathan Baldwin – WR – Pittsburgh
23. Mikel LeShoure – RB – Illinois
24. Janoris Jenkins – CB – Florida
25. Martez Wilson – LB – Illinois

* - indicates Reshirt Sophomore


III. Big Board (Top 100)

- Once again, I assumed on some Underclassmen and left off some others. If you need to know if I included one, just ask.

1. Andrew Luck – QB – Stanford**
2. A.J. Green – WR – Georgia*
3. Da’Quan Bowers – DE – Clemson*
4. Patrick Peterson – CB – LSU*
5. Cameron Newton – QB – Auburn*
6. Nick Fairley – DT – Auburn*
7. Julio Jones – WR – Alabama*
8. Marcell Dareus – DL – Alabama*
9. Robert Quinn – DE – North Carolina*
10. Prince Amukamara – CB – Nebraska
11. Ryan Kerrigan – DE – Purdue
12. Justin Blackmon – WR – Oklahoma State**
13. Mark Ingram – RB – Alabama*
14. Cameron Jordan – DE – California
15. J.J. Watt – DE – Wisconsin*
16. Jake Locker – QB – Washington
17. Justin Houston – OLB – Georgia*
18. Michael Floyd – WR – Notre Dame*
19. Ryan Mallett – QB – Arkansas*
20. Von Miller – OLB – Texas A&M
21. Ryan Broyles – WR – Oklahoma*
22. Tyron Smith – OT – USC**
23. Akeem Ayers – LB – UCLA*
24. Anthony Castonzo – OT – Boston College
25. Blaine Gabbert – QB – Missouri*

26. Cameron Heyward – DE – Ohio State
27. Kyle Rudolph – TE – Notre Dame*
28. Derek Sherrod – OT – Mississippi State
29. Nate Solder – OT – Colorado
30. Brandon Harris – CB – Miami*
31. Allen Bailey – DE – Miami
32. Adrian Clayborn – DE – Iowa
33. Jonathan Baldwin – WR – Pittsburgh*
34. Mikel LeShoure – RB – Illinois*
35. Janoris Jenkins – CB – Florida*
36. Martez Wilson – LB – Illinois*
37. Jimmy Smith – CB – Colorado
38. Bruce Carter – OLB – North Carolina
39. Marcus Cannon – OL – TCU
40. Gabe Carimi – OT – Wisconsin
41. Aaron Williams – CB – Texas*
42. Drake Nevis – DT – LSU
43. Stephen Paea – DT – Oregon State
44. Shane Vereen – RB – California*
45. Rahim Moore – FS – UCLA*
46. Quan Sturdivant – ILB – North Carolina
47. Corey Liuget – DT – Illinois*
48. Torrey Smith – WR – Maryland*
49. Kenny Tate – FS – Maryland*
50. Jared Crick – DT – Nebraska*

51. Christian Ballard – DL – Iowa
52. Lance Kendricks – TE – Wisconsin
53. Ryan Williams – RB – Virginia Tech**
54. Cordy Glenn – OG – Georgia*
55. Stefan Wisniewski – C – Penn State
56. Aldon Smith – DE – Missouri**
57. Jordan Todman – RB – Connecticut*
58. Zach Brown – OLB – North Carolina*
59. Chase Minnifield – CB – Virginia*
60. DeMarcus Love – OL - Arkansas
61. Muhammed Wilkerson – DT – Temple*
62. Leonard Hankerson – WR – Miami
63. Mike Pouncey – OG - Florida
64. Mark Barron – SS – Alabama*
65. Jerel Jernigan – WR – Troy
66. Orlando Franklin – OT - Miami
67. Deunta Williams – FS – North Carolina
68. Jeremy Beal – DE - Oklahoma
69. Jurrell Casey – DT – USC*
70. Brandon Burton – CB – Utah*
71. DeAndre McDaniel – SS – Clemson
72. Mason Foster – LB – Washington
73. Greg Romeus – DE - Pittsburgh
74. Mark Herzlich – LB – Boston College
75. D.J. Williams – TE – Arkansas

76. Jabaal Sheard – DE - Pittsburgh
77. Luke Stocker – TE – Tennessee
78. DeMarco Murray – RB – Oklahoma
79. Travis Lewis – LB – Oklahoma*
80. Titus Young – WR – Boise State
81. Ben Ijalana – OG - Villanova
82. Davon House – CB – New Mexico State
83. Dontay Moch – OLB – Nevada
84. Ras-I Dowling – CB – Virginia
85. Greg Little – WR – North Carolina
86. Quinton Carter – FS - Oklahoma
87. Christian Ponder – QB – Florida State
88. Sam Acho – DE - Texas
89. Brandon Hogan – CB – West Virginia
90. Jacquizz Rodgers – RB – Oregon State*
91. Curtis Brown – CB - Texas
92. Pierre Allen – DE – Nebraska
93. Johnny Patrick – CB – Louisville
94. Rodney Hudson – C – Florida State
95. Greg Jones – ILB – Michigan State
96. Kelvin Sheppard – LB - LSU
97. K.J. Wright – OLB – Mississippi State
98. Daniel Thomas – RB – Kansas State
99. Nate Irving – ILB – North Carolina State
100. Pat Devlin – QB – Delaware

* - indicates Junior
** - indicates Redshirt Sophomore


Next up ... A closer look at the Top 10 Underclassmen and Pre-Senior Bowl Positional Rankings.

TACKLE
01-04-2011, 09:10 PM
Great work man. Lookiing forward to your in depth breakdown of your top ten.

xxxxxxxx
01-04-2011, 09:22 PM
No pouncey?

Hurricanes25
01-04-2011, 09:24 PM
No pouncey?

He has Pouncey at #63.

ElectricEye
01-04-2011, 09:29 PM
Pudge, you're the man. You could honestly do this for a living.

Great list. Would love to see positional lists at some point if that's not too time consuming.

ThePudge
01-04-2011, 09:39 PM
Pudge, you're the man. You could honestly do this for a living.

Great list. Would love to see positional lists at some point if that's not too time consuming.

I've got the Seniors pretty much laid down. You can expect a list of positionals by Thursday & a more comprehensive look at the Top 10 Underclassmen. Back to school = plenty of time to get work done.

Honestly, if you ask me a specific position I can probably get it whipped up for you now.

49erNation85
01-04-2011, 09:48 PM
nice work Pludge.I can't wait for senior bowl week .

ElectricEye
01-04-2011, 09:48 PM
I've got the Seniors pretty much laid down. You can expect a list of positionals by Thursday & a more comprehensive look at the Top 10 Underclassmen. Back to school = plenty of time to get work done.

Honestly, if you ask me a specific position I can probably get it whipped up for you now.

I would love to see some 3-4 rankings type stuff if you had the time at some point down the line, but honestly, no rush.

ThePudge
01-04-2011, 10:32 PM
I would love to see some 3-4 rankings type stuff if you had the time at some point down the line, but honestly, no rush.

Not a problem at all. In the past I haven't done 3-4 rankings though with half of NFL teams running the 3-4, it's probably a good idea for me to start including them in my rankings. Now, I should note that this Nose Tackle class looks very weak right now and there are not nearly as many true NTs in this class as you'd like. That said, I might be stretching just a bit with a couple that I include at that position and it's not going to look pretty. I'll give it my best shot though.

3-4 Nose Tackles

1. Stephen Paea - Oregon State
2. Jarvis Jenkins - Clemson
3. Jerrell Powe - Mississippi
4. Phil Taylor - Baylor
5. Sione Fua - Stanford


3-4 Defensive End (5-Tech)

1. Marcell Dareus - Alabama*
2. Cameron Jordan - California
3. J.J. Watt - Wisconsin*
4. Cameron Heyward - Ohio State
5. Jared Crick - Nebraska*
6. Christian Ballard - Iowa
7. Allen Bailey - Miami
8. Adrian Clayborn - Iowa
9. Muhammed Wilkerson - Temple*
10. Pernell McPhee - Mississippi State


3-4 Outside Linebacker

1. Robert Quinn - North Carolina*
2. Justin Houston - Georgia*
3. Von Miller - Texas A&M
4. Akeem Ayers - UCLA*
5. Martez Wilson - Illinois*
6. Dontay Moch - Nevada
7. Mark Herzlich - Boston College
8. Jeremy Beal - Oklahoma
9. Vinny Curry - Marshall*
10. Jabaal Sheard - Pittsburgh

- If Courtney Upshaw declares he could wind up on this list.

jrdrylie
01-04-2011, 10:38 PM
3-4 Nose Tackles

1. Stephen Paea - Oregon State
2. Jarvis Jenkins - Clemson
3. Jerrell Powe - Mississippi
4. Phil Taylor - Baylor
5. Sione Fua - Stanford


You think Paea is big enough to play the nose in the 3-4? I think he might actually be able to slide to end in a 3-4.

ElectricEye
01-04-2011, 10:41 PM
Good stuff.

Agree completely about the NT class being pretty barren this year. I think Phil Taylor could be in for a huge rise at some point just because of how bad it is. He fits the label a bit better than some of the other guys who could do it as well. Sione Fua is a guy I like a lot. Really shows up when you watch the games, but you have to question if his game translates to the next level quite so well with his size.

As far as five techs go, I'm interested to hear your opinion on Watt in that role. There's currently debates in just about every thread where he comes up as to if he could be effective as a 3-4 DE. I'm inclined to think so. Wisconsin moves him around quite a bit and I've seen him come from the interior enough to be confident that he can handle the two gap.

ThePudge
01-04-2011, 10:42 PM
You think Paea is big enough to play the nose in the 3-4? I think he might actually be able to slide to end in a 3-4.

He's one of the strongest guys in this class and he's got a stout build listed at 6'1 311. I think his best fit is NT in a 4-3, but I think he could be attractive to some 3-4 teams at the Nose Tackle spot.

jrdrylie
01-04-2011, 10:48 PM
He's one of the strongest guys in this class and he's got a stout build listed at 6'1 311. I think his best fit is NT in a 4-3, but I think he could be attractive to some 3-4 teams at the Nose Tackle spot.

It's a weak NT class for sure. However, the 3-4 End class is fantastic, especially if you include Nick Fairley (though I think he would be wasted in the role compared to how great he could be in the 4-3).

ChiFan24
01-04-2011, 10:53 PM
Terrific work, but I hate to see Martez getting recognized by non-Illini fans. I've already come to terms with losing Liuget and LeShoure, I can't bare to see Martez go as well.

What do you think Martez's best fit is? 3-4 rush backer? I see him as more of 4-3 SAM or 3-4 ILB, though realistically he could play anywhere.

EDIT: Also, why so low for Aldon Smith? He's raw and doesn't have much of a repertoire of pass rushing moves (or really any repertoire at all for that matter), but I think the elite measurables, along with some pretty decent production, is good enough to warrant a first round grade. Any decent defensive line coach would get a lot out of him IMO.

ThePudge
01-04-2011, 10:59 PM
Terrific work, but I hate to see Martez getting recognized by non-Illini fans. I've already come to terms with losing Liuget and LeShoure, I can't bare to see Martez go as well.

What do you think Martez's best fit is? 3-4 rush backer? I see him as more of 4-3 SAM or 3-4 ILB, though realistically he could play anywhere.

I agree with that. Fits best on the strong-side in a 4-3 or inside in the 3-4, but I think he could be an effective 3-4 outside linebacker. Very versatile Linebacker prospect.

ThePudge
01-04-2011, 11:06 PM
As far as five techs go, I'm interested to hear your opinion on Watt in that role. There's currently debates in just about every thread where he comes up as to if he could be effective as a 3-4 DE. I'm inclined to think so. Wisconsin moves him around quite a bit and I've seen him come from the interior enough to be confident that he can handle the two gap.

I am an enormous fan of J.J. Watt. With a good workout in Indianapolis I think his draft stock could wind up in the Top 10-15. I think he may fit best at 5-Tech and could develop into one of the league's elite in time. That said, I think he could be an excellent 4-3 end too. He plays all over the place for the Badgers and just had an exceptional year as a run-stuffer and pass-rusher. Big, skilled, athletic player that shouldn't get out of the First Round.

ChiFan24
01-04-2011, 11:29 PM
I edited my previous post, so you probably missed my other question - why so low for Aldon Smith?

bullg8rdaddy
01-04-2011, 11:42 PM
Awesome work!

bullg8rdaddy
01-05-2011, 12:00 AM
BTW, I would love if my Bucs, using your Top 100 list, were able to land Ayers, Aldon Smith, and Quenton Carter with their first 3 picks.

ThePudge
01-05-2011, 12:14 AM
I edited my previous post, so you probably missed my other question - why so low for Aldon Smith?

I'm simply not as enamored with Aldon Smith as a player as some people. He has the look, he had a very productive year last season, and his upside is absolutely very high. Still, right now he's very raw and closer to Michael Johnson as a prospect than Jason Pierre-Paul to me. Not a great variety of pass-rush moves, not a lot of power, and will be a guy that takes some time to develop. He should stay in school, he has the potential to be a Top 10 pick in 2012. As it stands, I wouldn't draft him in the first 40 picks or so.

JPP90
01-05-2011, 12:20 AM
Good work but I'm not seeing Sheard as a 3-4 OLB at all. He's strictly a 4-3 end who relies more on power and technique than athleticism. I can't see him being successful in the 3-4 honestly. He's Jason Babin, not Demarcus Ware.

Morton
01-05-2011, 12:20 AM
Who is Justin Houston and why do you have him so high?

Master Exploder
01-05-2011, 12:22 AM
This is awesome work man! I think you're too high on Locker, but other than that it's great!

ThePudge
01-05-2011, 12:23 AM
Good work but I'm not seeing Sheard as a 3-4 OLB at all. He's strictly a 4-3 end who relies more on power and technique than athleticism. I can't see him being successful in the 3-4 honestly. He's Jason Babin, not Demarcus Ware.

I agree with you. I think he's much more suited to be a 4-3 end in the NFL. I think we're going to see them mess around with him at Linebacker a little at the Senior Bowl and depending on how he fares there he may or may not be looked at by 3-4 teams. I also think Jeremy Beal and Robert Quinn would be most suited to play end in a 4-3 scheme, but these guys will probably get looks at OLB some places.

JPP90
01-05-2011, 12:24 AM
Who is Justin Houston and why do you have him so high?

An OLB from Georgia expected to declare and rated a late 1st/early 2nd round pick.

JPP90
01-05-2011, 12:29 AM
I agree with you. I think he's much more suited to be a 4-3 end in the NFL. I think we're going to see them mess around with him at Linebacker a little at the Senior Bowl and depending on how he fares there he may or may not be looked at by 3-4 teams. I also think Jeremy Beal and Robert Quinn would be most suited to play end in a 4-3 scheme, but these guys will probably get looks at OLB some places.

Well if they do Id be blown away if he impresses in that role. I think he's gonna open eyes more in one-on-one drills and man-handle the tackles they have there. I'm expecting him to solidify a mid-late 1st selection. I see Atlanta in mocks from time to time and that would be a perfect fit. Great replacement for Abraham in a year or 2. Beal I can see pulling off the 3-4 rush 'backer role. I'm high on Moch and Miller in that role too.

ThePudge
01-05-2011, 12:29 AM
Who is Justin Houston and why do you have him so high?

Justin Houston is a 6'3 258 Junior rush-Linebacker playing at Georgia. A 2nd-Team All-SEC player a season ago. He was the most dynamic outside pass-rusher in the SEC this season and unlike many, he will be going to the NFL with experience as a 3-4 rush-backer. He finished the season with 67 Tackles 18.5 TFL and 10.0 Sacks total to go along with 42 Quarterback Hurries. 1st-Team All-Conference, Second Team All-American this season. I think right now he projects as a Top 20 pick who should be especially attractive to 3-4 teams.

Morton
01-05-2011, 12:31 AM
Interesting. This is honestly the first time I've heard about him, and I've heard about 95% of the other prospects on your list extensively.

Sniper
01-05-2011, 08:04 AM
Justin Houston is a 6'3 258 Junior rush-Linebacker playing at Georgia. A 2nd-Team All-SEC player a season ago. He was the most dynamic outside pass-rusher in the SEC this season and unlike many, he will be going to the NFL with experience as a 3-4 rush-backer. He finished the season with 67 Tackles 18.5 TFL and 10.0 Sacks total to go along with 42 Quarterback Hurries. 1st-Team All-Conference, Second Team All-American this season. I think right now he projects as a Top 20 pick who should be especially attractive to 3-4 teams.

Beast mode. He's awesome.

DiG
01-05-2011, 08:25 AM
III. Big Board (Top 100)

7. Julio Jones – WR – Alabama*
12. Justin Blackmon – WR – Oklahoma State**
-What separates these two so much for you? I like the Blackmon rating at 12 but Jones at 7 seems a bit high to me for a guy that has shown so much inconsistency in his game. The talent is there clearly but he is not without concerns as well.

14. Cameron Jordan – DE – California
-Love it. Jordan to me is one of the more underrated prospects

18. Michael Floyd – WR – Notre Dame*
21. Ryan Broyles – WR – Oklahoma*
33. Jonathan Baldwin – WR – Pittsburgh*
48. Torrey Smith – WR – Maryland*
-Really surprised by these rankings. Floyd to me has as much if not more injury concern than Malcolm Kelly did coming out which is frightening as a Skins fan who has lived through that type of situation. Baldwin and Broyles also feel too highly rated here imo. Baldwins attitude and dropsies concerns me and Ill honestly be surprised if he runs close to a sub 4.5 like people think. I like Broyles. I think he has a lot to offer but 21st overall is quite surprising. He has a ton of production clearly, and good hands, but not as explosive and quick as you would prefer a smaller sized WR in the NFL.

23. Akeem Ayers – LB – UCLA*
-I guess it makes sense but from what Ive seen from Ayers he looks really soft

55. Stefan Wisniewski – C – Penn State
-Would love to hear some more here. Wis looks like a perfect fit in a zone blocking scheme at C or G. Has a lot of versatility, good mechanics, quick, strong. Not a lot to complain about.

81. Ben Ijalana – OG - Villanova
-Small school drops his stock?

85. Greg Little – WR – North Carolina
-heart <3



responses in bold.

ncst8fan83
01-05-2011, 09:45 AM
I understand the Bruce Carter love. I understand Quan Sturdivant, I think he's a little underrated. I understand, but don't agree, with Herzlich being that high. But I would LOVE to hear your explanation on Zach Brown vs. Nate Irving.

ThePudge
01-05-2011, 10:51 AM
I understand the Bruce Carter love. I understand Quan Sturdivant, I think he's a little underrated. I understand, but don't agree, with Herzlich being that high. But I would LOVE to hear your explanation on Zach Brown vs. Nate Irving.

What that comes down to is a fleet-footed LB in Brown that compares favorably to 2010 2nd Rounder Daryl Washington. He's going to have enormous potential as a coverage Linebacker and comes with high upside with 4.4 speed at 225-230 pounds. His best fit appears to be WLB in a 4-3 and if brought along slowly he could develop into a heck of a player. Tampa 2 teams will offer the best fit. Most of this projection is very tied to high Combine expectations that I have for him. He's not all too instinctual or powerful so he'll definitely be a boom-or-bust guy. Likely to be drafted in the 2nd-3rd Round.

Irving was without a doubt the far superior college player but I worry that like many thumping ILB, he may not have the feet and athleticism to be the player he was in college. Size is also a concern for Irving as he's likely smaller than the 6'1 231 he's listed. Another thing that will hamper his draft stock are the injuries he's incurred (missed 09' and a third of 08'.) I do like him at MLB in a 4-3 system if he can stay healthy. I'm really hoping he gets a Senior Bowl invite, as I think that gives him a chance to rise up the boards. Right now though, I don't see him as quite the prospect he appears to be from his college film.

Herzlich is a guy that's coming back to full strength slowly, but it looks as if there won't be any serious obstacles to prevent him from returning to his former level of play. He's a very versatile guy, capable of playing a number of positions in a number of schemes. I think he'll be a guy that will test well in Indianapolis. On draft day a team will likely pull the trigger sooner rather than later as big, smart, versatile guys than can run are put a premium. The biggest concern for Herzlich are injuries, and they might be enough to push him out of the first two rounds.

Giantsfan1080
01-05-2011, 10:54 AM
Pudge what can you tell me about Travis Lewis? I haven't been able to watch him play this year but I've heard his name pop up in a few places. Any info is appreciated.

Grizzlegom
01-05-2011, 11:15 AM
responses in bold.

I share many of the same thoughts as Dirty.

Love the Cam Jordan ranking. He deserves to be up there.

Don't like Ayers that high. Interested to hear what you think his best fit in NFL is and why.

Also curious as to why you are so low on Wisniewski and Ijalana.

ncst8fan83
01-05-2011, 11:53 AM
What that comes down to is a fleet-footed LB in Brown that compares favorably to 2010 2nd Rounder Daryl Washington. He's going to have enormous potential as a coverage Linebacker and comes with high upside with 4.4 speed at 225-230 pounds. His best fit appears to be WLB in a 4-3 and if brought along slowly he could develop into a heck of a player. Tampa 2 teams will offer the best fit. Most of this projection is very tied to high Combine expectations that I have for him. He's not all too instinctual or powerful so he'll definitely be a boom-or-bust guy. Likely to be drafted in the 2nd-3rd Round.

Irving was without a doubt the far superior college player but I worry that like many thumping ILB, he may not have the feet and athleticism to be the player he was in college. Size is also a concern for Irving as he's likely smaller than the 6'1 231 he's listed. Another thing that will hamper his draft stock are the injuries he's incurred (missed 09' and a third of 08'.) I do like him at MLB in a 4-3 system if he can stay healthy. I'm really hoping he gets a Senior Bowl invite, as I think that gives him a chance to rise up the boards. Right now though, I don't see him as quite the prospect he appears to be from his college film.

Herzlich is a guy that's coming back to full strength slowly, but it looks as if there won't be any serious obstacles to prevent him from returning to his former level of play. He's a very versatile guy, capable of playing a number of positions in a number of schemes. I think he'll be a guy that will test well in Indianapolis. On draft day a team will likely pull the trigger sooner rather than later as big, smart, versatile guys than can run are put a premium. The biggest concern for Herzlich are injuries, and they might be enough to push him out of the first two rounds.

I hope Herzlich can regain his pre-cancer form, but I'm not sure I see him as anything more than maybe a Manny Lawson type OLB in the 34. That guy has great instincts in coverage (unlike Lawson).

As for the Brown/Irving deal, while I disagree with your assessment, I do understand where you're coming from on there as it seems to come down to a ceiling level for you. In my opinion, Irving would be better served as a WLB in the 43 and an WILB in the 34. He plays with great instincts, but when his gut feeling is wrong then he is usually severely out of position and gets driven out of the play by linemen.

In my opinion, Brown and Carter are extreme boom/bust guys. They will either play out of their minds or prove that their limited college production should have been a warning sign. Sturdivant/Williams are safer picks that will give you solid production but might not ever go to the Pro Bowl or garner an All-Pro spot. Give me Sturdivant, Herzlich, and Irving every day over the likes of Bruce Carter and Zach Brown. Their risk is too great for me personally.

Thank you for your explanation though. I do appreciate it.

ThePudge
01-05-2011, 12:19 PM
responses in bold.

Justin Blackmon vs. Julio Jones

I think people are still sleeping on Julio Jones as an NFL prospect. If I'm a team that needs a receiver in the Top 10, I don't hesitate to look at Jones if A.J. Green is gone.

He's a supreme physical specimen that has had an NFL body since the age of 17. When he weighs in at the NFL Combine, Julio is going to generate a lot of buzz amongst coaches/scouts/fans. At 6'4 220, it's amazing he's able to move the way he does; in fact, I'd say he's the most dynamic receiver in this class with the ball in his hands. He runs with excellent speed, moves in and out of his cuts well, and has remarkably quick feet for his size. His body control is tremendous and while his hands have been the subject of some scrutiny, his catching radius is huge.

He's unstoppable on slant and comeback routes, where he's able to create separation with his burst & able to shield defenders with his frame. He's very strong and is the best run-blocking receiver in this draft. Still a bit raw as a route-runner, though not poor in that category by any stretch. He's a bit injury prone and like Dwayne Bowe coming out of college, he'll need to improve his concentration. Cincinnati is likely his ceiling on draft day at 4th Overall, but he'll draw a lot of interest from Cleveland (6th Overall.) When all is said and done, I don't think there's a chance he gets past St. Louis at 14.

Now, I love Justin Blackmon and agree that there was no better receiver in college football this past year. If you're basing rankings on statistics alone, this guy dwarves A.J. Green as well as Jones. No player in the country finds the ball quite like Blackmon in the air. He plays bigger than his size (6'1 210 est.) and is capable of using his body to shield defenders. He's not a burner but he has adequate speed for the next level. He moves well with the ball after the catch, but his strongest asset is getting the ball into his hands. He's a very good route-runner that is a bit more polished than most receivers from spread systems.

His hands are very good, but he's not without his lapses in concentration. Character may or may not be a concern for some teams, as he was arrested for a DUI during the college season and was suspended for a game. His production this year was alarming, but aside from Kendall Hunter he was more or less the only option in for that team on offense. For a comparison, I think Blackmon is a cross between Hakeem Nicks & Greg Jennings. On draft day, I expect Blackmon will be selected in the Top 15-20 picks. St. Louis (14), Jacksonville (16), and Seattle (21) look to be possible landing spots if Blackmon declares.

I think Blackmon will be a good #1 receiver in the NFL but Julio Jones offers star potential at the position. I think Julio could quickly develop into a complete, top-notch receiver.


WRs (Floyd, Broyles, Baldwin, Smith)

I'll start by saying I'm a huge fan of both Michael Floyd and Ryan Broyles. Now, while I'm sold on both as NFL talents I don't think either will be drafted before the 32nd pick in the 2011 Draft. These are guys that are just going to be higher on my board than where they'll actually be drafted. Floyd's injuries are the main concern, but set them aside and you've got a receiver comparable to A.J. Green/Julio Jones in talent. Broyles compares favorably to Santonio Holmes and Mark Clayton, two former 1st-Round selections.

I think Floyd's injury concerns are just a little overblown. He played 12 games this season, and despite very average QB play for Notre Dame, put up 79 rec 1025 yds and 12 Td's. At 6'1 1/2 215 (est.) Floyd has good size and a thing I think many people overlook his speed. He may not time well, but he can turn on the jets as he showed on multiple occasions against Miami. His body control, physicality, and hands are attributes that have made him a dominant college player. I think Broyles is a heck of a player. He has this class' best set of hands, is likely the best route-runner in the class, and is nimble & smart with the ball in his hands. The best receiver in Oklahoma history has #1 potential and should be a very productive player for whatever team drafts him (in the Late 1st-Mid 2nd.)

I need to watch Torrey Smith more, as he's a guy I'd say has First Round potential and may very well end up the 3rd or 4th receiver taken on draft day. I share doubts about Jonathan Baldwin, though it's tough to drop him too far on my board with his blend of size and speed and the quality of the guys playing the QB position in the NFL these days. I don't think his attitude concerns are anything too irrational or serious, though that will be something we learn more on in February-March. If he goes to a place where he can develop over time as a #2/3 receiver, I think he has a chance to be a better pro than college player.


Wisniewski, Ijalana and Ayers

I'm not as high on Stefan Wisniewski as some. He's a technician at the Center position with adequate athleticism and adequate strength. I don't think he wow's you in any aspect and I don't think he's quite in the Mangold, Pouncey, Mack class as a 1st Round Center prospect. Playing out of position at Guard may have dented his stock a little bit, but I think it will be clear to NFL teams where he belongs. The Senior Bowl will be an excellent test for him, going up against Stephen Paea in practice and Drake Nevis on game day. If he holds his own I think his stock will rise and if, on the off chance, he dominates I think he could squeeze into the 1st Round to a team such as New England. As a side note: I agree he fits well at Center or Left Guard in a ZBS, but those teams typically only seem to take Tackles in the higher rounds.

Ayers is a guy that showed less than what many expected out of him this season. If he'd played to his ability we'd be talking about a Top 10 prospect. As it stands, Akeem Ayers is very versatile, very athletic, he's big and he's going to appeal to a great number of teams in a number of systems. I don't think his on-field performance merits a Top 20 selection, but he should fit somewhere in the First Round.

I can't wait to get a look at what Ben Ijalana does in Mobile against some powerful DTs and strong, pass-rushing DEs (Clayborn, Heyward, Kerrigan.) His size and girth is certainly impressive and he seems to have adequate feet, but to move into the first two rounds I think he needs to shine in his opportunity against top competition.

ThePudge
01-05-2011, 12:32 PM
As for the Brown/Irving deal, while I disagree with your assessment, I do understand where you're coming from on there as it seems to come down to a ceiling level for you. In my opinion, Irving would be better served as a WLB in the 43 and an WILB in the 34. He plays with great instincts, but when his gut feeling is wrong then he is usually severely out of position and gets driven out of the play by linemen.

In my opinion, Brown and Carter are extreme boom/bust guys. They will either play out of their minds or prove that their limited college production should have been a warning sign. Sturdivant/Williams are safer picks that will give you solid production but might not ever go to the Pro Bowl or garner an All-Pro spot. Give me Sturdivant, Herzlich, and Irving every day over the likes of Bruce Carter and Zach Brown. Their risk is too great for me personally.

I agree with Carter/Brown being boom-or-bust guys. Despite extraordinary measurables it's not a guarantee that either will become anything more than ordinary players at the next level. I'm actually highest on Quan Sturdivant as a player. He seems similar to former Georgia Bulldog & Bengals MLB Odell Thurman on the field and has excellent instincts. Bruce Carter is an imposing figure that will give a Linebackers coach a lot of raw ability to work with. He hasn't been the player in college that many thought he could be, or would be this season, but I think he'll still get looks in the 2nd Round in April.

I'll have to wait until the Senior Bowl/Combine to firm up an opinion on Nate Irving's NFL future. His spot on my current board illustrates fear I have about his floor. Undersized, aggressive, and injury-prone isn't the best combination at the next level. You may be right on him getting looks as a 4-3 WLB and 3-4 WILB, hopefully we get a chance to see him be moved around a little in Mobile if he goes. Mason Foster is another Linebacker who could easily enter the conversation in the 2nd Round range.

ThePudge
01-05-2011, 12:40 PM
Pudge what can you tell me about Travis Lewis? I haven't been able to watch him play this year but I've heard his name pop up in a few places. Any info is appreciated.

His name is certainly out there. I think people give him a bit too much credit as a prospect. His film is very uneven, he'll look like an All-American one day and like an UDFA the next. He makes big plays in coverage, but when moving upfield he'll often take bad angles or wind up out of position. His tackling is average, he hasn't been overly effective as a blitzer, and by no means is he a thumper. Lewis doesn't look like an NFL Linebacker, his frame is fairly slight and he lacks bulk; however, he certainly has enough athleticism and foot speed. He'll need to bulk up, but he should be drafted in the Third Round or earlier if he chooses to declare.

I think many jump the gun and talk about him as a First Round pick, but there are enough holes in his game to keep him from standing out in a fairly mediocre LB class.

gpngc
01-05-2011, 01:01 PM
I think Floyd is a bit overrated on this forum.

Big receivers who put up #s in college primarily because they're a big deep threat tend to struggle in the NFL. At 6'3"+ it's usually only the athletic freaks who become starting receivers. I'm not sure he's got the quickness to translate into a guy who can get consistent separation at the NFL level. He needs work on his route-running and getting in and out of his cuts quicker and smoother.

ESPN and CBS do not have him ranked anywhere near the first round. In fact, ESPN has him ranked behind Jernigan, Little, and Posey, besides the obvious ones.

Playing receiver in today's NFL is much more about quickness than size/straight-line speed.

But whenever you question a pure football player, there's always a chance they go out and prove you wrong, simply by continuing to display a knack for making plays catching the football.

But on the flipside to that - it's why I liked Dwayne Jarrett...

brat316
01-05-2011, 01:05 PM
I don't think Wilkerson is quite a 5 tech. He doesn't use his strength as much for a guy so big. He isn't really fat, he is a tall and lean DT. I think he would work better in a 4-3 as UT. The thing he does best is use his speed to penetrate and get to the ball.

ThePudge
01-05-2011, 01:18 PM
I think Floyd is a bit overrated on this forum.

Big receivers who put up #s in college primarily because they're a big deep threat tend to struggle in the NFL. At 6'3"+ it's usually only the athletic freaks who become starting receivers. I'm not sure he's got the quickness to translate into a guy who can get consistent separation at the NFL level. He needs work on his route-running and getting in and out of his cuts quicker and smoother.

ESPN and CBS do not have him ranked anywhere near the first round. In fact, ESPN has him ranked behind Jernigan, Little, and Posey, besides the obvious ones.

Playing receiver in today's NFL is much more about quickness than size/straight-line speed.

But whenever you question a pure football player, there's always a chance they go out and prove you wrong, simply by continuing to display a knack for making plays catching the football.

But on the flipside to that - it's why I liked Dwayne Jarrett...

Talent wise Floyd isn't all too far behind A.J. Green and Julio Jones. Michael Floyd has done a great job creating separation at the college level. He does a good job beating the jam, has decent feet, and possesses underrated speed/burst. His size, body control, concentration, and hands allow him to be effective even when he's well covered. I think a lot of draft services are turned off due to a history of injuries as well as a perceived lack of timed speed. I think he's plenty fast enough to be effective in the NFL.

Ultimately I don't think he goes in the 1st Round on draft day. Injuries/timed speed will likely push him into the 45-60 range if he chooses to declare. The guy played 12 games this past season and did what he needed to do despite turnover/inconsistency at the QB position. Consider me one of his believers.

Note: The fact that anyone, let alone a respected draft source, has DeVier Posey ranked above Floyd is an absolute disgrace. Posey has been pretty bad for the Buckeyes this year and his hands/route-running/toughness are very worrisome.

Bald_81
01-05-2011, 01:24 PM
What makes Vereen a better prospect than Ryan Williams? I can see LeShoure, but I'm puzzled by Vereen. What do you like about his game better than Williams (ignoring the fact that he has been injured this year)?

ThePudge
01-05-2011, 01:48 PM
What makes Vereen a better prospect than Ryan Williams? I can see LeShoure, but I'm puzzled by Vereen. What do you like about his game better than Williams (ignoring the fact that he has been injured this year)?

It's a little tough to ignore a guy being injured, because it will likely be a factor in his draft position. I was a big Williams fan entering the season but he didn't produce the way I thought he would even with splitting carries with Evans/Wilson. If I was choosing a guy to play 3 downs and take 20 carries a game, I'd go with Williams. The NFL isn't exactly the way it used to and a premium is being placed on speed & fitting into a rotation. Williams has great vision, impressive power for his size, and more speed/quickness than some give him credit for. If he proves he can stay healthy and doesn't weigh-in too small/slow he may very well wind up higher on my board.

I think Vereen projects as a change-of-pace back, similar to Jamaal Charles as a prospect. He lacks toughness, but has vision, speed, and quickness. He's a great receiver out of the backfield and may also be a threat to run routes out of the slot. He didn't make as many big plays as you'd expect from him, but behind a big OL I think Vereen projects as a better pro than college player. I think he'll be more useful at the NFL level than I thought Ryan Matthews would be a year ago as a prospect. I don't know that he's a 300 carry feature back, but he could be the missing piece in an offense and a great NFL player.

gpngc
01-05-2011, 03:36 PM
Talent wise Floyd isn't all too far behind A.J. Green and Julio Jones. Michael Floyd has done a great job creating separation at the college level. He does a good job beating the jam, has decent feet, and possesses underrated speed/burst. His size, body control, concentration, and hands allow him to be effective even when he's well covered. I think a lot of draft services are turned off due to a history of injuries as well as a perceived lack of timed speed. I think he's plenty fast enough to be effective in the NFL.

Ultimately I don't think he goes in the 1st Round on draft day. Injuries/timed speed will likely push him into the 45-60 range if he chooses to declare. The guy played 12 games this past season and did what he needed to do despite turnover/inconsistency at the QB position. Consider me one of his believers.

Note: The fact that anyone, let alone a respected draft source, has DeVier Posey ranked above Floyd is an absolute disgrace. Posey has been pretty bad for the Buckeyes this year and his hands/route-running/toughness are very worrisome.

I mean I don't hate the guy as a prospect but I definitely don't think he's got the NFL potential of Jones or Green. Not even close really. So I disagree that he's not too far off from them. He doesn't have the quicks, fluidity, or route-running prowess of either.

I think he's quite similar to other big (size-wise) college stars who fizzled out of the NFL because they couldn't get separation in the NFL. Two guys who come to mind are James Hardy and Dwayne Jarrett - both of whom were fairly highly-regarded pre-draft with a similar strengths in college but simply not enough quickness to hang in the pros. Floyd looks almost identical to Jarrett actually...

I'm not completely against him, but I don't think anyone would or should select him before the late 2nd round.

There has to be a reason that all these places (plus apparently the NFL advisory committee) don't feel he's worth of anything more than a 3rd-round selection.

Scott Wright:

No link but I heard from a reliable source Notre Dame WR Michael Floyd got a 3rd Round grade.

I'd guess guys like Smith and Broyles are taken ahead of him with more emphasis on quick receivers in today's NFL.

Longclaw
01-06-2011, 10:24 AM
Not a problem at all. In the past I haven't done 3-4 rankings though with half of NFL teams running the 3-4, it's probably a good idea for me to start including them in my rankings. Now, I should note that this Nose Tackle class looks very weak right now and there are not nearly as many true NTs in this class as you'd like. That said, I might be stretching just a bit with a couple that I include at that position and it's not going to look pretty. I'll give it my best shot though.

3-4 Nose Tackles

1. Stephen Paea - Oregon State
2. Jarvis Jenkins - Clemson
3. Jerrell Powe - Mississippi
4. Phil Taylor - Baylor
5. Sione Fua - Stanford


3-4 Defensive End (5-Tech)

1. Marcell Dareus - Alabama*
2. Cameron Jordan - California
3. J.J. Watt - Wisconsin*
4. Cameron Heyward - Ohio State
5. Jared Crick - Nebraska*
6. Christian Ballard - Iowa
7. Allen Bailey - Miami
8. Adrian Clayborn - Iowa
9. Muhammed Wilkerson - Temple*
10. Pernell McPhee - Mississippi State


3-4 Outside Linebacker

1. Robert Quinn - North Carolina*
2. Justin Houston - Georgia*
3. Von Miller - Texas A&M
4. Akeem Ayers - UCLA*
5. Martez Wilson - Illinois*
6. Dontay Moch - Nevada
7. Mark Herzlich - Boston College
8. Jeremy Beal - Oklahoma
9. Vinny Curry - Marshall*
10. Jabaal Sheard - Pittsburgh

- If Courtney Upshaw declares he could wind up on this list.



No Ryan Kerrigan as a 3-4 OLB?

ThePudge
01-06-2011, 11:34 AM
No Ryan Kerrigan as a 3-4 OLB?

Not quite yet, I'm playing it safe. If he stands up and plays a little LB in Mobile, I'll come around. Depending on how he does at the Senior Bowl/Cowbine I may or may not include him in my final 3-4 rankings. Of course we'll know by April whether 3-4 teams are looking at him.

Duffman57
01-07-2011, 06:31 PM
Hey Pudge, i was looking for some guys on the Chargers, and i was looking for a 3-4 OLB who could be had in around the 3rd round. Who do you think fits that bill, and who are the better pass rush specialists that you like and where will they go?