In the week ten edition of the Splendid Seven, I look at a returning OT prospect, my favorite Ivy League QB, and more.
1 – EJ Perry, QB, Brown
My love for Brown QB EJ Perry is getting borderline stalker-like at this stage. Against Yale, Perry again tried to carry his teammates on his shoulders but came up short. He completed 21/37 passing for 261 yards and three touchdowns. Perry threw two interceptions, one of which came on a tipped pass at the line. He ran the ball six times for 74 yards, including a 60-yard dash. Perry also caught a pass, running after the catch for a 64-yard score. I love the ball placement on his passes. Perry reads the defense quickly and can make big boy throws. Like most quarterbacks, Perry plays better when his team is near the lead or has it. He starts forcing the issue when trying to get Brown back into it down multiple scores.
2 – Sam Williams, EDGE, Mississippi
Sam Williams may be the quietest ten sack producer I have ever seen. He has become a popular name here at Draft Countdown in the last couple of weeks. While I doubt that we see either Liberty offensive tackle gracing an NFL offensive line anytime soon, that shouldn’t stop us from reveling in Williams’s performance against the Flames. Williams notched eight tackles, a forced fumble, and sacked Malik Willis twice. He has a chance to be a high-to-mid second-round draft pick at this rate.
3 – Jaquarii Roberson, WR, Wake Forest
Roberson is a tremendous route runner for the Deacs. He has deep speed and soft hands. Roberson caught seven passes for 111 yards and two scores in the narrow loss to North Carolina. He likely goes early on day three.
4 – Ty Chandler, RB, North Carolina
I have talked about Ty Chandler before. He continues to cement his status as a draftable back. Against Wake, the former Tennessee runner carried the ball 22 times for 213 yards with four TDs. Chandler sealed the game with a long TD run in the fourth quarter. His ability in all three phases will make him valuable to a team on day three.
5 – Keir Thomas, DL, Florida State
Jermaine Johnson gets all of the love for the Seminoles defense, but South Carolina transfer Keir Thomas has also made a significant impact. He probably would have been considered a tweener back in the day but now he is just scheme versatile. Strong enough to set the edge and quick enough to rush from inside. Against NC State, Thomas had three tackles and sacked Wolfpack QB Devin Leary twice.
6 – Jaxson Kirkland, OT, Washington
This was the first game back from injury for Kirkland and he drew a date with the top-rated prospect in this class, Oregon edge rusher Kayvon Thibodeaux. Kirkland handled Thibodeaux in one-on-one situations. The most fear-inducing Duck was held sackless on the night.
7 – Sincere McCormick, RB, UTSA
McCormick set the tone for the Roadrunners on the first play of the game with a 75-yard score on the first play of the game. He is a patient runner with good vision and balance. McCormick carried the ball 21 times against UTEP with 169 yards. He also caught two balls for twenty yards. McCormick, if he comes out, may get lost in the shuffle in this RB class.
NOTES AND OBSERVATIONS
I spoke briefly about Liberty QB Malik Willis earlier. Against the Rebels, Willis was sacked nine times and threw three picks. He is a poor decision maker in the pocket. Yes, Willis is dynamic with his legs. But if he doesn’t make the right decisions in the pocket, he is useless as a prospect. No matter how tantalizing his arm talent may be. I mocked him in the first round again this week but I don’t believe he is anywhere near a first-round talent. Malik Willis reminds me of what I thought when I watched Daniel Jones as a prospect. Both offer tantalizing traits while just making consistently careless decisions. I had Jones ranked in the 70-80 range as a prospect and I anticipate Willis will be in that range as well.
Wake Forest QB Sam Hartman made a couple of curious decisions against the Tar Heels and his accuracy was all over the place in the second half. Hartman completed 25/51 for 398 yards and five TDs with two picks. He also showed off his plus athleticism with 12 carries for 78 yards and two TDs. Hartman is not a perfect prospect by any means but he is a name to track for sure, probably in 2023.
When did North Carolina QB Sam Howell become Lamar Jackson? It seemed Howell was taking off running as much as was in the pocket throwing against Wake Forest. He ran for 104 yards and two scores and threw for another 216 and a TD.
Oregon RB Travis Dye has made the most of his opportunity in wake of the injury to CJ Verdell. Dye ran the ball 28 times for 211 yards and a score against Washington.
It is hard not to be impressed by Washington cornerback duo Kyler Gordon and Trent McDuffie. Each made their share of plays against the Oregon offense.
UTSA offensive tackle Spencer Burford is fun to watch. The 6’5” 300-pound senior manhandled the UTEP defenders on Saturday night. Burford probably projects inside but may get a shot to stay at tackle.
And finally, we conclude with what seems to be our weekly punter watch. San Diego State punter Matt Araiza bombed another this week. While officially “only” 80-yards the ball traveled in the air over 90. Hawaii tried to stage two returners at various levels to beat Araiza and he just unloaded it over both of their heads. I, not unlike the announcers on the FS1 broadcast, could only laugh.
Here was @matt_araiza‘s 15th punt this year of at least 60 yards, which is an NCAA FBS record. Watch on @FS1.#BeatUH | #Win22 pic.twitter.com/daaxzH5S9h
— San Diego State Football (@AztecFB) November 7, 2021