The Woodvegas Player Review:
Last year I posted rankings, grades, and condensed analyses/evaluations for our draft picks and undrafted free agents from a variety of sources including:
Mel Kiper Jr.'s Draft Report (Kiper, as I’m sure everyone knows, is an ESPN draft expert)
Coyle's Draft Insiders' Digest (recommended by Great Blue North and Coyle is a Rivals.com and NBCSports.com NFL analyst)
Pro Football Weekly's Draft Preview
I will do this again this year as time permits. This year I will add:
Mike Detillier’s M&D Draft Report (used by Titans Radio)
GM Jr.’s Guide to the NFL Draft (CBS Sportsline, NBCSports.com, and NFL.com contributor and part of KFFL’s Draft Central Complete pkg.)
The Sporting News War Room
NFL Draft Scout (USA Today and Fox Sports contributor)
Sports Illustrated (for selected players)
Comments and questions are welcome. Below are the various grading/rating scales for reference.
Kiper's rating scale:
10: Outstanding at his position........1st round
9: Start his first year......................1st or 2nd round
8: Potential to start his 1st year.......2nd to 4th round
7: Potential to start eventually.........5th or 6th round
6: Can make a club and contribute….7th round or not drafted
5: Has some talent-size or speed......not drafted
4: Questionable-free agent..............not drafted
Coyle’s Draft Insiders’ Digest rating system:
100-90: 1st round
89-80: 2nd-3rd round
79-70: 4th-5th round
69-60: 6th-7th round
59-50: free agent
Pro Football Weekly grade scale:
9.00: once in a lifetime player
8.00-9.00: perennial all-pro
7.50-7.99: future all-pro
7.00-7.49: should become a Pro Bowl caliber player
6.50-6.99: sure first rounder who has a chance to become a Pro Bowl caliber player
6.00-6.49: should become a quality NFL player
5.50-5.99: has a chance to become a quality NFL player and should be a 1st day pick
5.10-5.49: has a better than average chance to make an NFL roster
5.01-5.09: has a slightly better than 50-50 chance to make a roster or practice squad
5.00: has a 50-50 chance to make a roster or practice squad
4.75-4.99: should be in an NFL training camp
4.50-4.74: has a chance to be in an NFL training camp
4.00-4.49: could be in an NFL training camp but will likely need time in a developmental league
PFW Grade-to-Round Conversion Scale:
6.10 or above=1st round
5.12-5.24=better than even chance to be drafted in 6th or 7th round
The Sporting News grading system:
9.0-8.5: franchise player
8.4-8.0: potential Pro Bowl player
7.9-7.0: early impact player
6.9-6.0: early contributor
5.9-5.5: eventual starter
5.4-4.5: quality backup
4.4-4.0: chance to make roster
3.9-3.6: priority free agent
ESPN/Scouts, Inc. player grades:
90-100: rare prospect-in the top 5 in nation at his position………….1st round prospect
80-89: outstanding-in the top 10 at his position…………………………….2nd round
70-79: solid-in the top third of players at his position…………………..3rd round
60-69: good-in the top half of players at his position……………………middle round draft choice
50-59: adequate-rated in the 2nd third of players at his position….5th round pick
21-49: borderline-rated in the bottom third at his position…………late round or undrafted free agent
20: free agent prospect
10: not a legitimate prospect
M & D Draft Report rating scale:
20.00-19.30: 1st round pick
19.25-18.85: late 1st or early 2nd round pick
18.80-17.80: 2nd or 3rd round pick
17.75-17.30: late 3rd or 4th round pick
17.25-16.95: late 4th or 5th round pick
16.90-15.50: 6th or 7th round pick
15.45-14.10: 7th round pick
14.05 and under: free agent
GM Jr.’s numerical grading scale:
8.0-9.0: rare NFL player, changes games, Hall of Fame caliber…….1st round
7.0-7.9: impact player, regular at Pro Bowl…………………………………….1st round
6.5-6.9: very good NFL starter, makes plays to help team win……..1st round
6.3-6.4: very good NFL starter…………………………………………………………2nd round
6.0-6.3: good NFL starter…………………………………………………………………3rd round
5.9-6.0: solid/good NFL starter………………………………………………………..3rd/4th round
5.8: very good backup with potential to develop into a starter………5th round
5.7: good backup and very good special teams player……………………6th round
5.6: solid backup and good special teams player…………………………….7th round
5.5: solid backup and good special teams player…………………………….7th round or FA
5.0-5.4: solid free agent who will challenge for a spot on roster…….FA
4.0-4.9: limited player who will really struggle to survive in NFL……FA
1.0-3.9: not recommended as a prospect…………………………………………none
Sp=40 yd dash time
Vince Young (QB, 6' 5", 229 lbs, Texas-Jr, Sp=4.57, Wonderlic=16) Titans 1st pick, #3 pick overall (1st round), 1st QB to be drafted:
Career Highlights: Young compiled a 30-2 record for Texas (93.75 winning percentage ranks sixth in NCAA history)…led Texas to an upset win over USC to win the National Championship last season completing 30 of 40 passes for 267 yards and rushing for 200 yards on 19 carries...Became the fifth player in NCAA annals to pass and rush for over 200 points in his career…Only player in Division 1-A annals to gain over 250 yards passing and 250 yards rushing in the same game (2005 vs. Oklahoma State)...Led come-from-behind victories when Texas was tied or trailed at halftime eight times and directed six fourth-quarter comebacks during his career...Has rushed or passed for a touchdown in 33 of his 37 career games…Owns four of the top seven single-game quarterback rushing performances in UT history, including the school single-game record 267 yards, and posted the longest touchdown run by a quarterback in Texas history with an 80-yarder at Oklahoma State (2005)...Led Texas to points on 198 of 374 drives (52.9 percent) he directed (167 touchdowns and 31 field goals)...Has 43 career runs of 20 or more yards (seven of 51+)...His 6,040 yards passing rank fifth in school history...His 44 touchdown passes rank fourth in Texas annals...Finished his career with 9,167 yards in total offense, breaking the previous school career record...His 3,127 yards rushing not only set a school all-time record for quarterbacks, but also ranks fifth overall on Texas' record books behind Ricky Williams (6,279 from 1995-98), Cedric Benson (5,540 from 2001-04), Earl Campbell (4,443 from 1974-77) and Chris Gilbert (3,231 from 1966-68)...His 81 touchdowns responsible for (37 rushing, 44 passing) broke the old school record of 76 by Williams…In 2005, Young was named Cingular/ABC Sports All-America Player of the Year while winning the Davey O'Brien Award and Maxwell Award…He added conference Offensive Player of the Year honors and was a consensus first-team All-American…He ranked third in the nation in points responsible for (18.0 ppg) and passing efficiency (163.9) while his average of 314.3 yards per game in total offense ranked sixth…He finished second in the voting for the Heisman Trophy…Earned a spot on the eleven-member American Football Coaches Association Good Works team due to his work with charitable organizations and his involvement in community service efforts...Parade’s National Player of the Year in high school
Kiper: rating=9.5, #2 ranked QB, ranked #4 out of top 100 players regardless of position…It may take him some time to settle in, as it does with the majority of young QB’s, but Young is going to be a quality NFL quarterback thanks to his enormous athletic ability, powerful arm, superior competitive desire, and solid work ethic…Young’s biggest steps this past season came in his decision making ability… Gone were some of the bad throws and resulting interceptions that plagued his first 2 college seasons…He still has a tendency to force the ball into tight coverage at times, but that’s only because he has such confidence in his arm strength, which is outstanding…His accuracy is not affected by his rather unorthodox mechanics…He has a quick release, strong arm, and is for the most part, accurate…He also has terrific instincts to know when to run and when to throw the ball…Many will draw comparisons between Young and Michael Vick, but I think at this stage of development, Young is the better player…Young prefers to make a play via the pass first, and tuck it and run as a secondary option….When he does run, make no bones about it, he is a force to be reckoned with in the open field…There are still some holes in his game, but nothing that can’t be corrected with a QB coach and some seasoning…What Young has going for him are things you just can’t teach: a rifle for an arm, off the charts athleticism, and a great attitude towards the game…His improvement during the latter stages of his college career was remarkable…He’ll have some critics since he isn’t picture perfect throwing the ball, but I’m not concerned…In fact, I strongly believe that in time he will firmly establish himself as one of the top QB’s in the NFL.
Draft Insiders: rating=90, #2 ranked QB, ranked #8 out of top 120 players…he is a cross between Randall Cunningham and Donovan McNabb with the talent to surpass both of them…he is an imposing athlete with great size and talent that should allow him to become one of the premier NFL passers over time…he is a rare athlete with the ability to move quickly in the pocket and make big plays on the move…he can improvise and his ability to throw on the run made him very effective…he was a very dangerous runner in the open field, combining both rare power and elusiveness…his scrambling ability ranks with any passer in memory…his size allows him to break tackles and run over people, but what is really shocking is his ability to make defenders miss in the open field…he has a 6th sense about when to run with the ball and move in the pocket…his running ability puts incredible pressure on a defense where backers are not fast enough to stay with him and safeties are not big enough to take him down…his windup and footwork needs improvement to make quick accurate throws and he probably needs to sit for one season…the club that selects him needs to avoid an Akili Smith situation when he was rushed into playing for a bad club when he was not ready…Young may have the highest ceiling of any prospect in this draft class but his early production could be a major disappointment…his throwing mechanics were barely adequate and some valuable time with an NFL QB coach can round out his game tremendously while watching over his rookie season…though in that regard he has to be considered a developmental player, he is clearly a prospect with a huge upside to become an NFL star with patience and refinement of his rare athleticism and excellent intangibles…with limited time under center, he needs development in his basic mechanics, setup, and reads from that alignment…he shows very quick feet in his setup with the ability to plant and make all the throws…true blue chip prospect with excellent talent to become the premier NFL passer in the game, but needs critical time and proper setting to develop in that system after a shortened career…future Pro Bowler.
PFW: grade=8.00, #1 ranked QB, ranked #2 out of top 150 players regardless of position…was hit by a van riding a bike when he was 6 years old and tore his intestines, leaving a long vertical scar on his abdomen…has worked with Steve McNair at his passing camp and looks up to him as a father figure, being estranged from his father who remains jailed from a charge of burglary…rare competitor who finds a way to win…a magical runner and scrambler with the speed to go the distance…has a very quick release and flicks the ball effortlessly…has shown the ability to take over games…very durable…extremely driven and committed to the game and has shown he will make sacrifices to be great…has never had to play with his back to the defense, cross over his feet, drop and read a defense…makes his receivers slow down or go to the ground a lot to make catches and accuracy is not precise…has a sidearm, push delivery and a low release point for his size…needs to secure the ball better on the run…comes from a very loose, undisciplined practice environment unlike any NFL programs…has learned to become more of a passer first and a runner second…mechanics cry foul, but with a creative offensive coordinator, he could be next to unstoppable…will require a team to have some patience and allow him to adjust to the NFL game, but he may be the best natural athlete in the draft and has brilliant star potential.
The Sporting News: grade=8.6, #2 ranked QB, ranked #5 out of top 99 players…Has prototypical size…Is big, strong and built like a rock…Shows only an adequate arm but can make most of the necessary NFL throws…Has improved as a passer but remains raw. Shows good accuracy and timing...Must develop better mechanics and release point… Current sidearm delivery might lead to batted-down passes in the NFL…Has the size to see over any offensive line…Sees the field well; just needs to make better decisions in certain situations…Struggles to read coverage…Must become more patient, stand in the pocket and give receivers more time to get open…Sometimes tries to do too much…Has tremendous field vision as an open-field runner…Is a remarkable athlete with outstanding speed and mobility…Is always a threat to run…Shows quick feet in the pocket…Excels at avoiding rushes and breaking contain with great quickness and the strength to break would-be tackles…Can turn broken plays into big gains…Is very elusive; has the speed to outrun defensive backs…Is tough, fearless and cool under pressure…Has a presence about him; has already proved he can carry a team…Needs to improve his decision-making and prove he can run an NFL-style offense…Young has steadily improved his overall game and offers both great versatility and potential, as seen in his dazzling performance in the Rose Bowl…He still has a long way to go as a passer…The Titans will tailor their offense to the strengths of Vince Young, a dynamic multi-threat athlete who can wreak havoc with his feet, but is more accurate as a passer than people credit him for…The Titans picked Young because of his athletic ability and his huge upside, but they won’t expect him to play immediately…Young is raw as a passer, but he has good arm strength, and he was very accurate in college…He needs to improve his mechanics, but the Titans won’t try to change him too much…Young’s strength is his mobility, and his ability to put a strain on defenses.
ESPN/Scouts Inc: grade=97, #2 ranked QB, ranked #7 out of top players regardless of position…Possesses ideal size…Is tall, well-built and strong…A terrific athlete, especially for his size…Has reportedly been timed in the 4.4's in the 40-yard dash…Displays outstanding mobility and is an elite running threat at the quarterback position…Shows very good initial quickness and the ability to consistently avoid the rush…He has elusiveness and an impressive second-gear in the open field…A true dual-threat QB…Has improved his accuracy when throwing on the run…Extremely dangerous when he breaks containment and can force opponent to defend run-pass option…Makes a lot of things happen after the initial play breaks down…Has made enormous strides as a passer…Possesses adequate-to-good arm strength and can make most of the throws necessary in the NFL if his timing is right…His touch and timing continue to improve as a passer…He is a confident leader that teammates trust and follow…Comes with no off the field baggage…His mechanics need a lot of improving…Shows a low release point and, for the most part, shot-puts the ball as a passer…A better runner than passer at this point…Does not show a good comprehension of reading defenses and making progression reads…Is extremely raw as pocket passer and will need a lot of developmental tutelage in that area in the NFL…Most of his experience has been as a shotgun quarterback in a "read-option" system…Still lacks ideal decision-making skills…Shows adequate-to-good, but not great arm strength…Tries to force things when they are not available…Must learn to better protect the football…Takes too many chances when protection is breaking down and throws too many passes up for grabs…Is impatient in the pocket…Frequently takes off too early and does not allow his receivers enough time to separate…There is also concern regarding his mental capacity due to his marginal score on the Wonderlic Test…Prior to the significant improvements that Young made as a passer between his sophomore and junior seasons; it was our opinion that Young would need to make a position change in order to make a living in the NFL…However, he has made significant strides in terms of his arm strength, accuracy and vertical passing abilities over the course of the last year…Young still has much room to improve in terms of his mechanics, release point, accuracy and ability to take snaps under center and read coverage while dropping…But while another year wouldn't have hurt him, Young would not have improved in those areas had he returned to school to spend another season working out of the shotgun in a "read-option" offensive system…The bottom line is that because he is such an elite athlete with rare upside at the quarterback position, Young grades out as a high first-round pick.
M & D Draft Report: rating=19.51, #1 ranked QB, ranked #2 out of top 130 players…Young grew up in the home of his maternal grandmother and was raised by his grandmother, mother, and 3 sisters…there is no question that Young is one of the best pure athletes you will ever see on the football field…has a tremendous combination of size, speed, athletic ability, and elusiveness…natural leader and he has a take charge attitude in the huddle…very humble young man, who takes to coaching extremely well and he has a great attitude on and off the field…while he does have a low release point and a bit of a quirky delivery, he has a whip-like quick release…while there is some refinement work to be done on Young’s overall quarterbacking skills, you will not find an athlete with as much raw talent as Young has…in many ways he looks like a bigger and a more athletic version of Steve McNair when he came out of Alcorn State…he also has excellent leadership skills and a certain charisma around him…he is a winner out on the field and he wants the ball in his hands when the game is on the line…it may take a few seasons to refine his overall quarterbacking skills but this young man has a chance to be a special football player.
GM Jr: grade=5.9, #6 ranked QB…Vince is a rare athlete for an NFL QB and it helped him become one of the most dangerous all around college QB’s in history…Overall, other than Michael Vick and Steve Young I have never seen an athlete of this caliber who played QB…Vince is one of the most frustrating QB’s I have ever graded because he clearly has all the physical tools, character, work ethic, and intangibles to be a franchise QB, but from what I have seen on film I am concerned about his ability to run an NFL offense vs. the complex defenses he will see in the NFL…I think the thing that he does not get enough credit for is his ability to get rid of the ball very quickly with good zip on his passes…when he strides into his throws he can make all the throws with accuracy and zip…his ability to make big plays scrambling with the ball is a huge added bonus, but he must protect the ball better and learn to slide to avoid taking a lot of punishment…overall, if it were not for questions about his ability to deal with adjusting to a more complex NFL offense and to reading and adjusting to the complex NFL defenses he will now have to face, then he would be a franchise QB for sure because of his rare athleticism, character, intangibles, quick release, and accurate throwing ability…however, because of the questions/concerns I mentioned above I would be scared to draft him in the first round…in the end, I believe Young will become a very exciting QB in the NFL, but I believe he is going to deal with many of the issues that have plagued Michael Vick in regards to him becoming a polished passer…if you want him to become the player he is capable of then you must have patience to allow him time (2 or 3 seasons) to develop before he can become a starter.
NFL Draft Scout: #3 ranked QB, ranked #11 out of 1734 players, projected 1st round…A truly gifted athlete with the size of a linebacker and the speed of a sprinter…Has excellent size, functional strength, room for more growth on his developing frame and excellent balance, body control and foot speed...Quick-footed athlete who does a very good job throwing off the sprint and roll-out action...Assertive in the huddle and has good confidence in his ability to improvise...Has better accuracy on his short throws, understanding when to zip the ball...Has a natural feel for avoiding the rush, sliding and eluding with his foot speed...Knows when to take something off his dump-off throws...Can break tackles and move chains with his valid feet and leg drive...Easily eludes defensive linemen and linebackers in the open field...Shows much better accuracy when throwing on the run...Best when rolling away from the pocket, as he can pick apart defenses better when the opponent has to chase after him...Shows very good composure in pressure situations…Needs total refinement of his throwing motion...Has a very low release that allows defensive linemen to deflect the pass at the line of scrimmage...Lacks ideal field awareness and struggles to read complicated coverages...Does a poor job of making progression reads, failing to look off his primary targets...Has a "run first" mentality when his protection breaks down, but does a poor job of protecting the ball on the run, resulting in 29 fumbles in 37 games...Can fire the ball into tight areas, but when he attempts to go long, his passes hang up in the air, allowing the defense to settle under the ball to make the interception...Looks awkward with his footwork driving back from center and looks more comfortable working out of the shotgun...Must do a better job of anticipating the receivers' breaks on his deep tosses (too many times the receiver has to adjust to make the catch)...Anyone that saw his up-and-down performances in the 2005 Ohio State and Texas A&M games can see that he does not have ideal decision-masking skills (will look like Bambi staring at the headlights of a truck at times)… Young is one of the finest athletes in the collegiate game…He has excellent quickness, agility, balance and body control rolling out of the pocket…He has a tall, angular physique with good upper body muscle development, tight abdomen, fluid hips and thick thighs and calves…His change of direction agility and foot speed is outstanding for his position…He is an instinctive runner, but has struggled with the mental aspect of reading defenses in passing situations, resulting in 28 interceptions as a starter…He relies a lot on his foot speed and strength to gain positive yardage when flushed out of the pocket…Despite lofty statistics, you can see that the "light is not on" all the time when it comes to making proper reads and reacting quickly to schemes and coverages (see 2005 Ohio State and Texas A&M games and 2004 Oklahoma and Missouri contests)…Young shows very good quickness and the ability to throw off sprint and rollout action…He looks more comfortable in the shotgun, but has improved his drop-back ability from center…He can get a quick push away from the line of scrimmage in his drops, but looks hesitant when his primary target is covered and is more apt to run with the ball than make proper route progression reads to locate his secondary receivers…Unless Young plays in a spread offense at the next level, it will take quite a bit of time for him to start getting comfortable operating out of the pocket….He is best when allowed to improvise…As a scrambler, he has few peers, rivaling Atlanta's Michael Vick in the elusiveness he shows avoiding the pass rush…He demonstrates very good head fakes and the loose hips to make the initial tackler miss, but has had serious ball security issues (29 fumbles)…He has the straight-line speed to win most of the foot races and has the hip snap to sidestep pass rushers…On sheer athletic ability, Young has many NFL teams salivating for his services…He is still too raw of a product to step into the action at the next level and has to totally refine his throwing mechanics…While many compare him to Michael Vick, you have to wonder if either of them will develop into a solid pocket passer…Much like Vick, thoughts of Akili Smith (Bengals) run through your mind when you see Young play…Still, I see him more as a Donovan McNabb type…If given time to develop under patient coaching, the world could be his oyster…If he is "thrown to the wolves" and forced to produce before he is ready, it could damage his confidence level and prove to be a costly early first round draft decision.
LenDale White (RB, 6’ 0 ½”, 237 lbs, USC-Jr, Sp=4.60, Wonderlic=12) Titans 2nd pick, #45 pick overall (round 2), 5th RB to be drafted:
Career Highlights: White finished his career with 3,159 yards rushing, the 8th best in school history (Reggie Bush had 3169 yds)…His 52 career rushing touchdowns broke the previous school record of 49 held by Charles White and ranks second in Pac-10 history…His 52 scores on the ground ranks 14th in NCAA Division I-A annals…Only fumbled 4 times on 541 carries…Added 5 scores receiving…His 57 total TD’s set a school career record and are one shy of the Pac-10 mark…Those 57 scores also rank 12th in Division I-A history…In 2005 he was All-American second-team selection by The NFL Draft Report, adding third-team honors from the Associated Press...He was second-team All-Pac 10 Conference choice...He was a semi-finalist for the Doak Walker Award, given to the nation's top running back…In 2005 despite not starting any of thirteen games he played in, he still led the nation in scoring with 156 points (second with an average of 12.0 ppg), breaking the Pac-10 single-season record of 150 points by Skip Hicks of UCLA in 1997...His 24 touch-downs rushing led the nation and set school and conference single-season records, topping the old Pac-10 mark of 22 scores by Corey Dillon, Marcus Allen, O.J. Simpson, and Hicks...Ran 197 times for 1,302 yards (6.6 avg), becoming the first Trojan since Marcus Allen to rush for over 1,000 yards in consecutive seasons...He lost only 17 yards rushing the entire 13 game season…Caught 14 passes for 219 yards (15.6 avg) and two scores...His 26 total touchdowns broke the Pac-10 season record of 25 by Hicks in 1997... Gained 913 of his rushing yards after initial contact...94 of his carries resulted in first downs, including converting 18 third-down plays and three more on fourth-down...Ran for over 10 yards 28 times and for over 20 yards twelve times...Did not fumble all year, extending his string to 278 carries without a fumble….In 2004 he was a Sophomore All-American second-team selection by College Football News and All-Pac 10 Conference first-team pick by ESPN...In 2003 he was College Football News Freshman All-American second-team choice...Named Pac 10 Conference Offensive Freshman of the Year by The Sporting News and College Football News...Shared ESPN Pac-10 co-Newcomer of the Year honors... Despite not starting any games or seeing much action as a freshman until the season's fifth game, White led the team with 141 carries for 754 yards (5.3 avg) and thirteen touchdowns...His thirteen scoring runs set a school single-season record for freshmen.
Kiper: rating=9.0, #4 ranked RB, ranked #29 out of top 100 players regardless of position…USC’s complementary power back to the more heralded Reggie Bush, White has the ability to be a workhorse in the NFL and should have a solid career in front of him…he is a big powerful back who was frequently a short yardage guy for Pete Carroll’s squad…he’s tough between the tackles, yet has surprisingly good speed for a man his size…he has the quickness to turn the corner…he’s a great fit in a 1-back situation, a la the old Washington Redskins under Joe Gibbs, who made such good use of the likes of John Riggins and George Rogers…White will be a workhorse in the NFL and should be around for quite awhile.
Draft Insiders: rating=88, #3 ranked RB, ranked #18 out of top 120 players…fast powerful junior tailback had an excellent short career with the Trojans, providing both power and rare speed for a big runner…big fast young tailback with the package to be a starting feature back in the NFL, and possibly as a rookie…he needs some development as a receiver…he is a punishing back with a definite starting grade in any setting once he refines his receiving skills…he has decent tools as a receiver with the skills to surprise in that role within a short time…he displayed soft hands and the ability to make plays after the catch on the perimeter…as a runner, he has the ability to consistently run inside and be a game-to-game starter… he is similar to Marion Butts and T.J. Duckett in size and power but he is superior in speed and athletic talent...ranks with the best college goal line runners in memory, like Marcus Allen, another Trojan great…he can win a feature back role as a rookie if he shows up to NFL standards as a blocker and receiver…top 20 prospect…good 1st day addition with intriguing upside to be a major producer as a pro.
PFW: grade=6.40, #2 ranked RB, ranked #14 out of top 150 players…2 cousins played college football at Notre Dame and Wyoming and another cousin played basketball in the NBA for the Detroit Pistons…had arthroscopic surgery to remove torn cartilage in his left ankle…big, strong powerful runner…swift afoot for his size and knows how to finish runs…has played big in big games…runs with good body lean and can be a force in short yardage situations…most of his yardage is gained after initial contact…secures the ball tightly and did not put it on the ground last season…has a soft body and does not like to train and condition...has never been a featured back and has split carries throughout his career…can be slow to get started…lacks breakaway speed…does not like to do the dirty work in pass protection…not a great worker…questionable character… the best pure bell cow back in the draft…White is a load to stop and is best built to pound the ball between the tackles…in a big man’s league where a premium is placed on size and power, White brings a lot of value with little tread on his tires…a comparable runner to Jamal Lewis… the team that drafts White better be sure that money will not change his desire and competitiveness…legitimate top 10 talent with some character concerns that could push him down draft boards and off of others.
The Sporting News: grade=8.0, #4 ranked RB, ranked #25 of top 99 players…White can be an every-down back in a run-dominated, physical offense…If not for the presence of Reggie Bush at Southern California, White might have been college football's No. 1 running back in '05…White is a big, physical north-south runner…He is not overly elusive but has great footwork and enough wiggle to turn short runs into big gains…He never fumbles, either…He has a great nose for the goal line and pushes the pile or finds a crease and burst through…White's stock dropped after his pre-draft workouts when he showed up overweight and didn't run well…He is currently a late first-rounder but he could continue falling into the second…Tough power runner can carry defenders on his back and run over smaller defenders…Runs with good pad level…Has a nice combination of feel for running the ball and explosion…Isn't very fast, elusive or quick-footed…Is a tough tone setter…Weight could be an issue…Football character is in question…The Titans couldn’t afford to pass on White, whom many had rated as a first-round pick just over a month ago…White is a bruising runner who reminds some in the organization of former Titan Eddie George…He has great size and strength, and is outstanding in short yardage situations…White lacks breakaway speed, but he has shown the ability to break off long runs by running through tackles from smaller defensive backs…He needs to improve in pass blocking, but he has decent hands as a receiver out of the backfield.
ESPN/Scouts, Inc: grade=90, #4 ranked RB, ranked #29 of top players regardless of position…Possesses excellent size…Is tall, well-built and strong…Runs with good leverage and pad-level…Shows very good power at the POA and will run through defenders that don't break down and wrap up…He has a strong lower body and shows the ability to push the pile with his leg drive…Gains a lot of yards after contact and always seems to be falling forward at the end of runs…Shows good initial burst and enough of a second-gear for a bigger back…Lacks elite top-end speed…Shows a good second-gear for his size but he's not overly elusive in space…Won't make many defenders miss…Decent underneath receiver, but not a homerun threat…Lacks ideal speed and elusiveness after the catch…Has room to improve in terms of recognition skills and technique as a blocker, but is willing…Has had some durability issues, including lingering ankle injuries late in the 2004 season and in the middle of the 2005 season…There also are some concerns regarding maturity and mental capacity after academic issues in 2005…White missed spring practice in 2005 because of an ankle injury (left) that required arthroscopic surgery…He also came close to losing his eligibility due to academic problems…It is important to note that White had a huge advantage at the collegiate level due to his exceptional supporting cast…However, White is an outstanding player in his own right and he has the size and power to excel as a north-south "bell cow" in the NFL.
M & D Draft Report: rating=19.21, #2 ranked RB, ranked #13 out of top 130 players…he was considered one of the top backs in the country when he came out of high school in Colorado…he is a battering ram of a runner, who flashes real good initial quickness off the snap and he simply wears down a defense…he is a weave and gear-up type of runner who has excellent instincts and he knows how to follow his blocks in a first class manner…tremendous short yardage and red zone type runner…in many ways White is reminiscent of Jerome Bettis when he came out of Notre Dame…if you want a runner to score points for you when you get close to the goal line and get those tough inside yards then White is your man…he should be a top 15 selection.
GM Jr: grade=6.3, #2 ranked RB…White is a junior who came out early for the NFL Draft and is finally getting the publicity he did not get at USC because he shared the backfield with Reggie Bush…He is a big, physical running back who has all the physical tools to be a strong inside runner who consistently breaks tackles and gains yards after contact…However, he will need to do a much better job of picking up his feet when he runs in traffic to avoid being tripped up by low/grab tackles ever so often…He has good vision and instincts running with the ball and they combine with his quick feet so that he can make sharp cuts and get through the hole quickly…He has the ability to run aggressively, lower his shoulder and deliver a hard blow to tackler -- he can knock the tackler off his feet surprisingly well…Overall, White may not have the athleticism and the big play ability of Reggie Bush, but he is going to be a good starting running back in the NFL who will be able to handle 25-plus carries a game and will consistently gain yards after contact…While he might have the talent to start in any type of offense, White is best suited to play for a team that relies on a power running game that does a lot of inside running.
Calvin Lowry (S, 5’ 11”, 199 lbs, Penn St.-Sr, Sp=4.50, Wonderlic=14) Titans 3rd pick, #102 pick overall (round 4), 10th S to be drafted:
Career Highlights: Ranks 17th in school history with nine interceptions...His 812 yards on punt returns rank third on the school's career-record list...His 340 yards on punt returns in 2005 rank ninth on Penn State's single-season record chart…All-Big Ten Conference first-team selection by the league's coaches, earning second-team honors from the media in 2005...Determined that he was not leaving the team until it won a Big Ten Conference title, Lowry put together a banner senior campaign to see his dream realized ranking third on the Nittany Lions with 79 tackles (48 solos), including one sack and a forced fumble...He had four interceptions and two pass breakups while continuing to return punts, gaining 340 yards on 32 attempts (10.6 avg)...In 39 games at Penn State, Lowry earned 26 starting assignments...He finished with 163 tackles (94 solos), two sacks for minus-18 yards and 4.5 stops for losses of 26 yards...He recovered four fumbles, returning one for an 8-yard gain and also had one forced fumble...Lowry registered nine interceptions for 110 yards in returns and deflected four passes...He amassed 812 yards on 86 punt returns (9.4 avg) and 300 yards on 16 kickoff returns (18.8 avg).
Kiper: rating=8.3, #7 ranked S, ranked #87 out of top 100 players…a fast, athletic safety with punt return skills, Lowry proved to be a major college sleeper type during the latter stages of his fine career…he sprinted for the track team at the high school level…he graduated from high school in 3 ½ years and enrolled at PSU in January of 2002 and contributed during spring drills…this past season , Lowry was a first team All-Big 10 pick after recording 4 interceptions, 73 total tackles, 1.5 TFL’s, a sack, one forced fumble, and 2 pass breakups…he also led the Nittany Lions in punt returns averaging 11.2 yds. per attempt….Lowry is fast and proved that he can hold his own in pass coverage responsibilities…he also has some special teams skills, which is a nice asset for a young player in the NFL…he doesn’t qualify as an intimidating safety, but he’s a reliable tackler and brings plenty of aggressiveness to the position…speed and fluidity allow him to really do a job in coverage…shows excellent anticipation and diagnostic ability, making it possible for him to come through with 8 interceptions over his final 2 seasons…his draft rating has been on a steady rise, to the point where I would expect him to come off the board before day one has concluded…not only is he a solid, experienced safety, but his punt return skills are an added bonus.
Draft Insiders: rating=65, #15 ranked S, not ranked in the top 120 players…savvy senior free safety was the leader of the Lion’s talented secondary that ranked among the best nationally…he completed his career with a good senior season and a fine performance at the NFL Combine that has him moving up the charts…he is a smart heady defender who reads and reacts quickly and knows his responsibilities within a defense and has the athleticism to carry them out…he is not a top athlete, but tests out more than adequately on speed and quickness, combined with his fine intangibles allows him to be a well developed performer…he is basically a sure tackler who comes up and fills and plays bigger than his size, but he can be overaggressive at times and fail to make the stop…he is sound technically as a tackler and rarely misses a chance to drop a runner…in pass coverage, he grades out well in zone coverage where he has the speed to cover the deep zones and shows the burst to close on the ball on the underneath patterns…at the combine his agility drills were among the better times for the position…he invariably seems to always be around the ball…he has fine hands and ball skills and is able to extend to pluck the ball out of the air...he does a fine job of reading the eyes of the QB and baiting him into an errant throw…his overall coverage skills are only average mainly due to little experience in man situations after playing in the PSU system…whether he can cover the slot receiver or tight end will determine if he can play in the dime package or ever challenge for starting time…he is best suited for zone coverage, though his speed and COD skills should enable him to match up in man situations…tough athlete with marginal size with the AA and intangibles to possibly start in the right setting…decent special teams performer though his return skills may never be better than backup…fast riser and possible late pick.
PFW: grade=5.20, #6 ranked FS, not ranked in top 150 players…father is in the Army…suffered a season ending broken tibia in 2002…became the team’s primary return man in 2003…plays smart, disciplined football…shows good awareness in the middle and will put himself in position to make plays…instinctive…will highpoint the ball and shows good hands…quickly diagnoses run or pass and gets where he needs to be…had a solid Hula Bowl showing…not a strong, blow-up tackler and will get knocked backward…not a great athlete…will struggle to break down and change direction and will play a little out of control at times trying to fill fast…has a thin build and needs momentum on his side to bring force as a tackler…has limited experience in man coverage…return skills are average for the NFL…an ideal number 3 safety with the intelligence and instincts to step in and contribute…special teams ability could add value.
The Sporting News: grade=5.6, #12 ranked S, not ranked in the top 99 players…Explosive defender with great ball skills…Has a knack for making big plays…Dissects plays quickly and reacts well to what is in front of him…Is a tough run defender who can make plays in the open field. Excels in deep coverage; keeps receivers in front of him…Is a capable punt returner…Struggles to get off blocks in run support…Lacks the ideal speed and height of a deep pass defender…Gets by with excellent recognition skills but lacks the second gear needed to run with speedy receivers…Has trouble in man-to-man coverage against taller receivers…Lowry is a pure free safety prospect and is at his best playing back as the last line of defense…He is a tough, fiery competitor whose ability to return kicks will enhance his value…However, he struggles when asked to play man-to-man, which will hinder his ability to play in nickel and dime packages…He could be off the board early in Round 5…Understands the game, and puts himself in position to take away routes and make plays…Is smart…Lacks size…Is a willing hitter, but shows tight hip movements that sometimes hinder his tackling ability…The Titans like the way he diagnoses and his ability to wrap up ball carriers.
ESPN/Scouts, Inc: grade=64, #12 ranked S, ranked #132 of top players…Is an experienced and versatile FS/RS prospect…He has adequate bulk for his size…Also possesses adequate top-end speed…Is quick and fluid for the safety position…Is at his best playing the high-point as a centerfielder in deep zone coverage…He reads and reacts quickly…Shows impressive diagnostic skills and will get good jumps on the ball by reading QB's eyes…He has improve his ball skills and emerged as more of a playmaker late in his college career…He fills hard versus the run and shows good toughness in that regard…Has improved his open field tackling skills…Also has very good experience as a return specialist…Shows good vision and quickness when returning punts…Lacks ideal all-around physical tools…Lacks ideal height and possesses just adequate speed…Does not possess great strength and will struggle to get off of blocks…He is quick and fluid, but lacks recovery speed if he makes a mistake or gets turned around…He is far more effective in zone coverage than he is man-to-man…Has experience as a return specialist but lacks explosive qualities in that facet of the game…Lowry is a tough, instinctive free safety prospect with some versatility because of his experience as a punt return specialist…He had his best season as a senior in 2005, when he emerged as a much bigger playmaker in coverage and in the return game…However, he lacks ideal overall physical tools and likely will level off as a reserve safety that also can serve as insurance as a punt return specialist…In our opinion, Lowry has value early on Day 2 but lacks the upside of a first-day selection.
M & D Draft Report: rating=17.74, #12 ranked S, ranked #113 out of top 130 players…very instinctive football player who always seems to be in the right spot to be in the center of the action…he has quick diagnostic skills and he makes good football decisions out on the field…he is quick in the hips and comes out of transition well in pass coverage…has good hands and he is always looking to make the big interception…does a fine job patrolling the centerfield…solid open field tackler and he will come up quickly to help out in run support…works well in zone type coverages…has good , but not great catch up ability…has seen very little work in man to man coverage situations...needs to upgrade his tackling and be a more secure wrap up guy in the open field…needs to get stronger and improve his overall strength…solid special teams performer also…good, solid football player who is productive, smart and a player that seems to show up everywhere to make a play.
GM Jr: grade=5.4, #26 ranked S…Lowry is an overachieving safety who consistently has shown a knack for making plays despite lacking the athleticism coaches want in a safety…He lacks the really quick feet and playing speed that are ideal, but his instincts and quick reads help him to break quicker on the ball than his athleticism dictates he should be able to…He attacks the line of scrimmage in run support. When he stays under control and keeps his feet under him, he can make good, physical tackles on big ball carriers…The trouble is that he is stiff in the hips and struggles to slow up in pursuit to avoid over-running the tackle, and at times he will stop field, bend at the waist and over-extend on tackles…He does a good job reading and reacting in zone coverage, and closes on the receiver quick enough to make hard hits after the catch, but does not get there in time to make plays on the ball…His lack of athleticism and play speed limits his ability and versatility to cover well in man-to-man coverage; he will get torched by NFL receivers and tight ends…He has been a solid special-teams player who will be a decent NFL special-teams player who can contribute on all four primary units...Overall, Lowry lacks the athleticism I want which is why I would not draft him, but with his toughness, instincts and competitiveness, I believe he will be a good free-agent signing who can challenge for the job as a team's last safety and special-teams player, but will struggle to establish himself enough to have a long NFL career.
NFL Draft Scout: #6 ranked SS, ranked #129 out of all players, projected 3rd-4th round…Crime, Law and Justice major, graduating in December 2005... Lowry has been a steadying influence in the Penn State secondary the past two years, manning the strong safety position, but his quickness and range could see him shift to free safety at the pro level…He has proven to be a capable punt returner and with his natural hands, has also had great success intercepting passes since moving into the starting lineup…Smart, instinctive player who is rarely caught out of position...Has the quickness and burst to close on the ball and shows the loose hips needed to turn and run coming out of transition...Has good field presence and is most effective when playing deep in center field, as he is alert to blocking schemes and does a very good job of keeping plays in front of him...Has the foot speed to handle slot receivers in man coverage...Does a good job of attacking the ball in the air, possessing the natural hands, leaping ability and timing to get to the pass at its high point... Will step up and fill in run support, but does not have the bulk or strength to create a pile or disengage from offensive linemen in action at the line of scrimmage...Has the speed to cover receivers one-on-one, but often tries to make the big play and go for the interception rather than handle route responsibilities...Frame is not ideal for strong safety, but he has the speed to shift to free safety...Has good hands to field the punt, but has had a high amount of fair catches in this category and is too quick to put his hand up rather than attack the coverage...Has thin calves and marginal leg strength, preventing him from holding ground at the point of attack...More quick than fast, but lacks the second gear and explosive acceleration to recover when beaten…Lowry is a quick athlete with a frame more suited for free safety…He is a smart, instinctive player whose ability to locate the ball quickly is one of his better assets…He appears more comfortable lining up deep in the zone, where he has a better chance of keeping the action in front of him, rather than trailing the receiver in man coverage. The Titans like the way he diagnoses things and his tackling ability. His initial impact is likely to be on special teams.
Stephen Tulloch (ILB/OLB, 5’ 11”, 241 lbs, North Carolina St.-Jr, Sp=4.84, Wonderlic=28) our 4th pick, #116 pick overall (4th round), 7th ILB to be drafted:
Career Highlights: Despite starting only 18 games, Tulloch ranks third in school history with 40 stops behind the line of scrimmage...His 21 stops for losses in 2005 tied the school single-season record...His five tackles for losses vs. South Florida in the 2005 Meineke Car Care Bowl is the second-best game total in Wolfpack history…He ranked 14th in the nation in tackles in 2005…earned 1st team All-ACC honors as a junior…All-America third-team choice by The NFL Draft Report…In 35 games at State, Tulloch started 18 times…He recorded 274 tackles (137 solos) with seven sacks for minus-44 yards and 20 quarterback pressures…He caused a fumble, recovered three others, deflected five passes and had a 50-yard interception return for a touchdown while participating in 1,278 plays.
Kiper: rating=6.5, #21 ranked OLB, not ranked in the top 100 players…playing behind a very good defensive front, Tulloch took advantage of all the attention paid to his defensive mates and became a quality defensive player in the N.C. State program…as a true freshman for N.C. State he played in all 12 games and posted 65 tackles…as a true junior he led N.C. State in tackles, with 149, including 20.5 tackles for loss, 6 sacks, 9 QB hurries, 3 pass deflections, and a fumble recovery…only twice during the year did he have fewer than 10 tackles in a game…Tulloch was able to be so productive in the ACC because the N.C. State defensive front was such a force, and freed him up not to have to take on blocks…he’s instinctive and quick to locate the ball, and he’s a sure tackler once he chases the ball carrier down…he is a high intensity guy, and he really stepped up his game after coming back from shoulder surgery in the spring…the problem when you project Tulloch to the pro level is below average straight-line 40 speed…despite the collegiate productivity, there is a chance he could slide into the late rounds and maybe even end up as a priority undrafted free agent.
Draft Insiders: rating=65, #20 ranked OLB, not ranked in the top 120 players…very productive, undersized linebacker who declared for the NFL Draft as a junior after an excellent 2005 season…he has been a big part of the N.C. State defense over 3 seasons with the last 2 as a starter on the weak side…he may be viewed by some scouts as a SS-OLB tweener, though is the type of athletic undersized backer that many teams are going to these days on the weak side…he is a very quick defender with a strong muscular physique and fine nose for the football…he is extremely strong in the upper body and can bench press twice his body weight…his fine strength translates well to the playing field where he is rarely on the ground and gets through traffic to make plays…he needs to play covered up in a stack formation where he is protected from blockers and can use his speed, instincts and quickness to run sideline to sideline…in pass coverage, he has the ability to turn his hips and stay with backs and tight ends in the open field, though he needs further development in that role…he understands zone coverage and gets good drops with a burst to the ball to make plays, but his initial read is only adequate and he needs further reps in coverage…he needs further work on this area of play and currently is not up to competing for the nickel backer role…he showed no ill effects of the shoulder surgery that forced him to miss spring 2005 football…he will hit a carrier on the run, but is not a face up tackler…he is more a drag down tackler especially after the shoulder surgery…in run support, he attempts to slip blocks at the line of scrimmage to avoid being engulfed by big lineman…he has short arms and can struggle to separate from them once engaged at the POT…while he is a workout warrior with a commitment to conditioning and detail, he has only marginal explosion on the field…at this point, he looks like a solid backup and top special teams player where his speed and hitting power could earn him the critical time to develop in the base defense…he doesn’t have great size and can easily be covered up and washed out vs. the inside run…he is a good tackler and shows the necessary body control to break down in space and make the play…tough conditioned defender with marginal size and AA…fine intangibles to get the most out of his talent and possibly start at the Will LB in time, but not ready for nickel backer role early in his career…solid special teams performer…good late addition with tools to improve, but not a top 150 prospect.
PFW: grade=5.20, #9 ranked ILB, not ranked in the top 150 players…active, high effort, instinctive plugger…gets downhill fast...very feisty and competitive and is always around the ball…athletic and shows above average burst…fights through blocks and will strike and separate…has very good production and makes a lot of plays in the backfield…plays hard and sets the tone for the defense…is shorter than scouts would like and lacks great bulk…shows some tightness in his hips and does not open his hips naturally…can get stuck on big blockers and will get out of position trying to beat blocks by the back door…run and hit linebacker who needs to be protected so he can be free to the ball...will not be stacked on some draft boards because of his diminutive size but could be effective in a one gap scheme…plays with the same type of energy as Dexter Coakley.
The Sporting News: grade=4.8, #21 ranked OLB, not ranked in the top 99… Shows nice instincts…Is aggressive, and always gets around the ball. Is quick and agile; takes good angles to the ball…Is strong; strikes and wraps up ball carriers with sudden burst…Plays at full speed but under control; breaks down plays and rarely over pursues the ball…Shows good recognition skills in coverage, and drops quickly into zones…Has a good feel for blitzing…Plays with intensity on special teams…Lacks size and elite speed…Lacks the lower-body strength to hold his ground at the point of attack…Gets engulfed by offensive linemen, and doesn't use hands well to shed blockers…Still is a young player who lacks experience in coverage, and doesn't show natural ball skills…Tulloch is a playmaker with great upside, but his draft stock is limited by lacking size and elite speed… He is only 21 and needs time to develop physically…He should be able to contribute on special teams as his mind and body develops…He warrants nothing more than a late-Round 7 pick…Short, stocky early-entry junior made a ton of plays in college...A hard-nosed player with speed, Tulloch should compete for the Titans' starting middle linebacker job.
ESPN/Scouts Inc: grade=48, #18 ranked OLB…not ranked in the top 150 players…Is an instinctive, quick and aggressive WLB…At his best when protected…Shows very good initial quickness, balance and body control…Takes solid angles and shows some closing burst to the ball carrier…Has good upper-body power for his size and shows good initial pop at the POA as a tackler…He wraps up in space and does a good job of playing under control…He shows good initial burst and instincts as a pass rusher…Shows adequate range in zone coverage…Does a good job of reading QB's eyes and plays with good discipline in zone…Shows some versatility as a possible WLB and/or ILB in the NFL…Also has the right mental makeup and tackling skills to excel on special teams in the NFL…A young prospect; will be just 21 years old when drafted…Also has been durable…Is short and lacks ideal bulk…Will get engulfed by bigger blockers at the POA…Needs to be in space to be effective…Lacks elite speed and will struggle to overcome his lack of size in the NFL as easily as he did in college…Must improve his lower body strength and hand usage in order to more effectively get off of blocks…Lack of ideal size and top-end speed will limit him in terms of some man-to-man match ups in coverage at the next level…Does not show great ball skills in coverage…Lacks ideal playing experience and may suffer through a bigger learning curve than most other prospects from his class…Tulloch lacks ideal size and possesses just decent top-end speed, but he is a quick, instinctive and tough WLB that emerged as a dynamic playmaker as a junior in 2005 and seems to have his best football still ahead of him…Tulloch has an outside chance of eventually emerging as a starting WLB or ILB in the NFL and he should at least become a versatile backup…Furthermore, he can immediately contribute on special teams…In our opinion, Tulloch is worth selecting in the middle rounds of the 2006 draft.
M & D Draft Report: rating=17.55, #11 ranked OLB, not ranked in the top 130 players…turned 21 years old on January 1st…versatile LB who could project to either weak side or MLB…very active LB who has very good football instincts and playmaking skills…aggressive player coming up the field and he knows how to find the proper angle to get in on the tackle…does a very good job fighting through the heavy traffic and he has quick separation skills from would-be blockers… strong player for his size and he packs quite a powerful shot…he has good play recognition and reaction skills…has a good feel for blitzing off the edge and getting excellent outside penetration…he also drops back smoothly into his pass coverage assignments…very intense and productive player…he lacks ideal size and foot speed…he has above average quickness…he lacks great size and bulk strength and he needs to learn how to play off of blockers in a quicker fashion…while he is a good cover man, he is a little tight in the hips when turning and running with backs downfield…he lacks great size and elite foot speed, but he is instinctive, tough, has a knack for slipping around blocks and he is a defensive playmaker.
GM Jr: grade=5.5, #15 ranked MLB… Tulloch is a junior who came out early for the Draft, and while he would not have grown any taller or become a better athlete with another season, he definitely would have helped himself by staying for his senior season…He is a tough and competitive linebacker who consistently has shown willingness to take on blockers aggressively at the point of attack, but he struggles to shed quick enough to make the play…His instincts help him to read-and-react quickly to the play which allows him to chase down running plays in pursuit when he has a clear path to the ball, but his stiffness hinders his ability to move thru traffic easily…He does not use his hands well vs. blockers (low or not) and does not make plays when he has to take on and defeat a blocker…Obviously, his lack of size is a big hurdle for him to overcome, and his stiffness and lack of athleticism hinder his ability to do so…Overall, he no doubt made a mistake coming out early for the draft and I think he is going to struggle to make an impact in the NFL…His best chance for success is as a backup inside linebacker and special teams player, but he will struggle to stick with a team for the long term.
NFL Draft Scout: #12 ranked ILB, ranked #208 out of all players, projected round 5-6…Tulloch emerged as one of the premier linebackers in college football as a junior, ranking 14th in the nation in tackles in 2005…Has good initial quickness, body control, balance and closing area burst...More quick than fast, but is instinctive with quick reactions and always seems to be around the ball...Tough and aggressive tackler who hits with good pop...Despite lacking bulk to create a pile, he plays strong for his size...Keeps his feet and regains his balance sifting through trash and can recover quickly when he outruns the play...Uses his shoulders more than his hands, but is effective at slipping blocks or running around and under and still making the play...Shows very good ball reaction skills and anticipation when blitzing…Physical blitzer with good acceleration and will unload when he targets the quarterback…More quick than fast and does not have the timed speed to cover receivers outside the short zone...Lacks the size and bulk to play on the outside, as he struggles to shed when attacked by the larger blockers...Might be better suited for inside linebacker in a 3-4 alignment, as he plays his best when protected...Better playing in space, as he does not have the lower body power to drive through blocks (needs a clear lane)...Better in zone coverage, as he does not have the timed speed to handle man coverage...Needs to be in the right scheme (Cover-2)…Tulloch is a very aggressive linebacker who excels when working in space…He has the ability to see plays develop and react to them quickly…He has the strength to fill rush lanes, but will struggle vs. double teams and bigger blockers due to a lack of lower body strength to anchor and hold ground at the point of attack…While he is effective in the zone, his speed is not effective enough to work in man coverage on the weak side…Small but fast, the Titans will move him inside and expect he could establish himself as the starter in what's a part time role.
Terna Nande (OLB, 6’ 0”, 232 lbs, Miami (Ohio)-Sr, Sp=4.51, Wonderlic=31) Titans 5th pick, #137 pick overall (5th round), 13th OLB to be drafted:
Career Highlights: All-Mid American first-team selection in 2004 and second team selection in 2003…Produced 38 tackles behind the line of scrimmage during his career...His 20 stops for losses in 2003 rank eleventh on the school's single-season record list...Had at least ten tackles in eight games during his career…520-pound bench press...620-pound squat…Benched 225 pounds 41 times at the combine…nicknamed the “Nigerian Nightmare,” “Freak,” and “Mr. Incredible” for his physical prowess.
Kiper: rating=7.9, #11 ranked OLB, not ranked in the top 100 players…coming into the 2005 season, Nande looked like the real deal; an injury, though, caused him to miss significant action and also push him down the draft board some…he played as a true freshman for the Red Hawks in 2002 and in 12 games, started 9 times…he had several impressive individual efforts in 2003 as a sophomore…earned first team All-MAC honors in 2004 after making 86 tackles, with 9 TFL, and 3 sacks, breaking up 4 passed and recovering a fumble…this past season, Nande suffered a lacerated liver midway through the season and missed 5 games…Nande is fast, athletic, and very intense…the injury causes concern, but if you go back to his sophomore and junior films, he looks like a 2nd or 3rd round pick...his computer numbers are in the superior category, with his straight line speed, upper body strength, and athleticism sure to excite LB coaches in the NFL.
Draft Insiders: rating=75, #13 ranked OLB, not ranked in the top 120 players…similar to Wesly Mallard…freakish athlete completed an injury shortened senior season that included overcoming a lacerated liver…he is a super strong fast OLB who has been one of the more unheralded defenders in the nation since early in his MAC career…he displays keen instincts and the toughness to fight through blockers and make plays, though he mainly attempts to avoid blockers to get to the ball carrier…despite incredible strength numbers, he shows only marginal strength to stack and shed, gets tied up to blockers and can get washed out of the play at times…he lacks the bulk to stack and hold a spot vs. a tackle, tight end, or double teams…when he does fight off blocks, he shows excellent speed and the ability to change direction quickly…as a pass rusher, he has a good first step, with fast acceleration, but he must improve hand techniques and learn to dip his shoulder better to gain the advantage off the edge…his good up field pressure allowed him to win often on pure quickness and acceleration at his level…he needs to use his hands better to counter inside, in addition to better use of his strength to develop a hump move, though his ability to collapse the pocket is highly questionable…as a sophomore he was the leader of their defense…he has very good mobility and can cover in man or zone situations with fine drops and reads in coverage…he is best suited to play the weak side spot where his marginal size, but supreme athleticism is best suited, protected from blockers by the D-lineman…he has been very productive vs. top competition in all aspects of play at that position…he is best when he is in a chase mode, pursuing from the backside, moving laterally down the line…he needs to maintain discipline to not over pursue plays, because at times he broke down poorly in space and allowed the cutback to open up…his fine speed allows him to cover mistakes, but he needs work on his change of direction skills and hip flexibility…he is capable of winning the nickel LB role as a rookie…he has the look of an outstanding special teams maven and should do well on all coverage units…he is capable of winning a gunner role where his speed and hitting power could guarantee a career…within a base defense, he will need to be in an attack one gap type of scheme that allows him to use his quickness and speed to the fullest…he is a faster version of former Clemson LB Keith Adams and current Patriot Wesly Mallard…experienced run and chase LB best suited for the weak side spot in a stack formation… at his best, he is a consistent undersized LB with his best skills being his pursuit and coverage as a stack backer that can be kept free to chase laterally…immediate top special teams performer…fine workout warrior with AA, instincts, toughness, and speed to be a possible starter with development…weak side LB and top 150 player.
PFW: grade=5.17, #21 ranked OLB, not ranked in the top 150 players…family is from Nigeria and mother still lives there…ran track as a prep…workout warrior…can bench press a house and jump through the roof…has very good chase speed and makes a lot of tackles in pursuit…plays with gusto and has good range…can generally run with tight ends and backs and shows a feel for coverage…excellent work habits…very competitive…is undersized and struggles to convert his weight room strength to the field…cannot press off blocks to disengage when he gets entangled…too straight-linish and stiff and struggles to break down in the open field…overruns too many plays…has been dinged up a lot the last 2 years…could catch on as a special teams player and backup weakside linebacker…tough, undersized achiever with speed…needs to play a scheme where he is protected.
The Sporting News: grade=4.9, #19 ranked OLB, not ranked in the top 99…Is an outstanding athlete with raw strength and explosiveness…Never stops hustling…Makes big hits by exploding into runners…Is quick; shows good agility and run/pass-recognition skills…Drops quickly into zone coverage, and shows good range…Matches up well with tight ends, and is strong enough to jam them…Covers running backs adequately…Is effective and disruptive when blitzing…Is a workout warrior…Is a major durability concern because of size and a serious liver condition that caused him to miss six games as a senior…Doesn't appear to have the frame to add bulk…Lacks ideal lower-body strength; relies too much on strong upper body…Doesn't take on and shed blockers consistently…Often goes for big hits and misses…Tends to over pursue and get beat on cutbacks…Must read keys better in coverage…Nande sometimes dominated MAC competition, but he must add bulk and be more physical to be an NFL linebacker…He lacks any elite physical traits, so he must become more disciplined to earn a roster spot…He has enough athleticism and tenacity to play special teams as he develops his defensive skills…He projects as an early-Round 6 pick….Makes up for lack of ideal size with athleticism and speed…Delivers big hits with strength and explosiveness…Could play more under control and take better angles…Shows a little hips tightness in coverage…He could be moved to safety.
ESPN/Scouts Inc: grade=46, #17 ranked OLB, not ranked in the top 150 players…Is a gifted athlete with adequate-to-good speed, great natural strength and explosive upper body power…He plays with a high motor…Pursues hard and shows closing burst to the ball carrier…He is an explosive hitter…Will deliver the big blow and will force more than his share of fumbles…He has adequate fluidity in his hips and shows good COD skills…Has good range in zone coverage and shows the quickness and speed to match up with most RB's one-on-one in the short-to-intermediate zone…He has very good instincts on the blitz...Makes a lot of plays behind the LOS and shows good closing burst to the QB as a pass rusher…Health is a concern after missing five games with a lacerated liver in 2005…He is undersized…Lacks ideal height and bulk…Does not have big frame to continue to get bigger…He is a big hitter but he also can be an inconsistent tackler…He takes some poor angles and will mis-judge the pursuit…He is an explosive playmaker at the mid-major level but his speed is nowhere near what some originally estimated…As a result, he won't be able to simply out-run everyone in the NFL like he has in college…He will need to learn to take on blockers more effectively…He will need to improve his array of pass rush moves…And he also will need to show more consistency with his recognition skills in coverage, as he won't have the speed to make up for his mistakes…Nande fell off the map a bit after missing five games with a lacerated liver that he suffered against Kent State in 2005…However, he looked to be back in peak physical condition at the combine, where he notched 41 reps on the standard 225-pound bench press, a time of 4.53 in the 40-yard dash and a broad jump of 10'4"…Nande will need to improve his bulk and ability to take on blockers if he is to contribute as a linebacker in the NFL…Concerns regarding his long-term health could cause Nande to slip on draft weekend but we still think he warrants consideration in the final three rounds.
M & D Draft Report: rating=16.98, #16 ranked OLB, not ranked in the top 130 players…Terna’s family is from Nigeria and his mother still lives there…undersized weakside LB, who has rare straight-ahead foot speed and strength…this young man is really put together and he just crushes runners in their tracks…very productive player who gives great effort on and off the field…he has excellent range and he roams the field extremely well from side to side…he gets up the field in a flash and he has some destructive tendencies in the opponents’ backfield…more of a chase guy than someone who takes blockers head-on and he has trouble shedding off blockers at the point of attack...he is a bit undisciplined and his zeal to make a play will pull him out of position…he is very fast, but he is a little tight in the hips and he needs work on his pass coverage techniques…while he is super fast, he has trouble making quick adjustment skills on the move…has the speed and mentality to develop into a tremendous special teams performer…he has a “just-go-get-them” personality out on the field, but he must calm down his tendencies to freelance and play a more disciplined style of football.
GM Jr: grade=5.7, #15 ranked OLB…Nande is a player who was unimpressive in the first game graded, but with each successive game graded, he was more and more productive -- he's always around the ball making plays…He is no doubt shorter than ideal at just 6-0, but he is very well-built at over 230 pounds and has surprisingly good playing strength -- He can stack the point of attack vs. lead blocks, and he flashes the ability to shed quickly and make the tackle on runs at him (He blew people away at the Combine when he did over 40 reps of 225 pounds)…He has very quick feet and good all-around athletic ability, which allows him to chase down plays in pursuit and to be productive playing off the line of scrimmage in coverage…The trouble is that he gets bounced around in traffic and gets cut to the ground by low blocks too easily…Overall, Nande is an under-sized linebacker with the competitiveness, playing strength, athleticism and playing speed to consistently make plays…He is probably going to be drafted around where I rate him, and will end up developing into a solid starting weakside linebacker who also contributes a lot on special teams.
NFL Draft Scout: #12 ranked OLB, ranked #160 out of all players, projected round 4-5…Nande possesses excellent power, quickness and leaping ability. Has a smooth frame with lean muscle tone, but generates tremendous power from a body that does not look the part (520-pound bench press)...Has natural athletic skills, showing exceptional explosive speed to close...Better straight-line runner than when operating laterally...Does a decent job of locating the ball vs. the run...Best when playing on the move and as a downhill performer, as he has the burst to get to the outside, doing a good job of fitting in space...Does not always flip his hips in man coverage, but has the acceleration to recover...Better working in the zone, where he seems to anticipate the pass when the play is in front of him rather than with his back to the ball...Has that explosive burst needed to generate backside pursuit...Despite his lack of size, his raw power allows him to defeat blocks in one-on-one situations...Has the speed to take on tight ends and backs, mirroring them tightly in the short area…Has great weight room strength, but it does not always translate to the field, as he is not active with his hands to defeat blocks and his size still causes him to get walled off by the bigger blockers (needs to protect himself better from reach and cut blocks)...Undersized and his frame has little room for further growth...Possible safety projection, but has some hip stiffness that causes problems getting good depth dropping back in coverage...Does not look natural looking the ball in and struggles to secure the ball (more pass breakups than interceptions)...Has outstanding speed to surge into the backfield, but gets reckless in his pursuit and does not have the plant-and-drive agility to recover...Must do a better job of taking proper angles in his lateral pursuit...Hard hitter, but gets too high in his stance and fails to bring his arms to wrap and secure, which sees ball carriers slide off some of his hits...Has some medical concerns (lacerated liver), but did return to action for his final two games after missing five due to the injury in 2005...In 2004 he underwent arthroscopic right knee surgery in mid-July…Nande is a very interesting physical specimen…On first eye contact, he looks to have lean muscle development and smooth skin, but more like a safety than a linebacker…Once you step into the weight room and see him produce, you can only wonder what kind of power he could generate if he was muscled up…For all of his athletic ability, he sometimes negates his explosive hitting prowess because he does not always play in control…He has adequate read-and-react skills vs. the run, but is slow to anticipate the quarterback in passing situations…By the time he locates the ball in flight, he gets reckless in his play trying to recover…He will probably never develop much more physically, making him an undersized linebacker who could bring value in the nickel package…He works better in the zone where the plays are in front of him, but might not be able to shift to safety at the pro level because of adequate backpedal agility, tight hips and poor anticipation for the ball in flight…Late in the draft, he will be worth a pick to see if he can develop, but he needs to develop better technique and awareness before I can see him as a player rather than an athlete.
Jesse Mahelona (DT, 6’ 1”, 310 lbs, Tennessee-Sr, Sp=5.03, Wonderlic=17) Titans 6th pick, #169 pick overall (5th round), 12th DT to be drafted:
Career Highlights: Ranks 10th in school history with 19.5 stops behind the line of scrimmage vs. the run...His 18.5 total tackles behind the line of scrimmage in 2004 ranks sixth on the school's single-season list behind Leonard Little (25 in 1995), Reggie White (24 in 1983), Todd Kelly (21 in 1992), John Henderson (20 in 2000) and Shaun Ellis (19.5 in 1999)…In 2005 he was All-Southeastern Conference honorable mention by the Associated Press...Semifinalist for the Lombardi Award...Started all year at right defensive tackle...Recorded 35 tackles (18 solos) with two sacks for minus-17 yards and eight stops for losses of 31 yards...Credited with nine quarterback pressures and caused a fumble…Led the SEC in tackles for loss in 2004…In 2004 he was All-America selection by The Sporting News...Consensus All-Southeastern Conference second-team pick...Rated by Rivals.com and TheInsiders.com as best junior college defensive tackle prospect in country.
Kiper: rating=7.5, #16 ranked DT, not ranked in the top 100 players…after a great junior season where he took the SEC by storm, Mahelona’s stock has dropped as he has gained weight for the transition to the NFL…he was a 1st team All-Hawaii pick as a senior in high school…before coming to Tennessee, he spent 2 seasons at Orange Coast College in California…he managed just 2 games in 2004 before breaking his ankle and missing the rest of the season…he is quick and powerful…with his thick base, he gets a leverage advantage, and is explosive off the ball…at the Senior Bowl, his weight was up, and he seemed to have lost some of that explosiveness; he just didn’t have the same quickness that he displayed as a junior…he’ll need to get his weight back down to get that quickness back, but that makes you wonder if he’ll then be overpowered and neutralized at the pro level…he could be a rotational type defensive tackle at the pro level, but he’ll have to prove that he isn’t just a great college player.
Draft Insiders: rating=80, #11 ranked DT, ranked #105 out of top 120 players…similar to Booger McFarland…explosive, short senior tackle has been a playmaker on the Vols front for the past 2 seasons after a fine JC career…he has the explosive 1st step and quick hands that gives him a fast advantage over blockers early on the down...he shows fine instincts to locate the ball quickly and the closing burst of speed to make the big play…his lack of prototypical size will probably put him behind the top prospects, but his big play ability and production can rival any prospect in the class…on the snap, he gains a consistent advantage, relying on his very quick first step and strong hands to gain penetration into the backfield…despite his short stature, he has fairly long arms, which he uses well to keep blockers off his body…he is an explosive one gap type of tackle with an excellent first step…he has fine overall functional strength, especially in his hands and is a fiery intense defender who looks to make the play on every down…he needs work on his technique to separate quicker, in addition to further strength work since he can be blocked and controlled when he is blocked head up…he has the speed to get to the sidelines, but needs to develop better tackling ability in space…his game is quickness and speed which allows him to be a disruptive inside player…he has been called “Baby Sapp” as he compared to Warren Sapp, but is actually more comparable to current Eagles’ DT Mike Patterson…he has developed very good reads, reaction and vision to recognize run and react to pass or run…he did not workout at the combine due to an ankle injury…as a pass rusher, he combines both quickness and power and is best suited for the 3-technique position, where he is isolated in single match ups that he mainly wins early on the down…he will get a good push off the ball and can collapse the pocket though he needs work on that maneuver…he can struggle to separate to make plays late…quick athletic tackle is coming off an impressive short career…he has the well rounded athletic ability that will allow him to be an every down defender in the NFL…he displayed the burst to get up the field and defeat quality linemen with his initial quickness and moves…quick defender with AA, big game experience and production to become a fine NFL starting DT in the right scheme…he warrants a Top 150 rating and 2nd day selection.
PFW: grade=5.30, #13 ranked DT, not ranked in the top 150 players…Hawaii native…also participated in soccer, basketball, and paddling in high school…admitted to receiving gifts from a local furniture store after store management heard that he and his roommates had lost their furniture in a fire…was forced to return the items and did not face NCAA sanctions…gets a good jump off the ball and has good burst up field…has looked unblockable in some games…shows good lateral quickness and a nice short area burst…can work an edge and get penetration…makes a lot of plays behind the line of scrimmage…flashes a mean streak…great competitor…very loyal…doesn’t have ideal size….has short legs…plays small for a 300 pounder…not very instinctive…might strictly be a one gap player…can get stuck on blocks and is knocked off balance too much…is on the ground a lot…tires too easily and runs out of gas…gets abused by double teams and can’t hold his ground…best situation would be to play as a one or three technique in an attacking, up field scheme…not a fit for every team and can’t be a nose tackle or hold 2 gaps, but some scouts like him more than 49ers 2003 second round pick Anthony Adams.
The Sporting News: grade=6.3, #10 ranked DT, ranked #83 in top 99 players...Possesses average quickness and power…Shows a good burst off the line, and consistently penetrates the backfield…Is a hard-hitting tackler…Is powerful at the point of attack…Is a perfect fit as a three-technique tackle in a 4-3 scheme…Continues to get bigger and improve technique…Didn’t live up to expectations as a senior…Must become consistent in recognizing plays…Occasionally gets out of position…Must improve hand placement and leverage when shedding blockers…Must add bulk…Plays with a narrow base, making it hard to hold his ground against the run…Is a minor durability concern because of a broken ankle in ‘03…Mahelona's production slid a bit in ‘05, but he still made the most out of his two years at Tennessee…Though he is projected to be a 4-3 tackle, he has the size and athleticism to play end in a 3-4…He didn't have a great Senior Bowl week or great pre-draft workouts…He projects as a mid- or late-Round 3 pick…A disruptive defender, he would fit well in an upfield scheme…Shows some initial explosion and pass-rush ability…Is agile and has good range…Gets push…Goes all out…Has a feel for finding the ball…Is on the ground often…Gets knocked around some…Is on the short side…Plays a little like the Buccaneers' Anthony McFarland…Smaller than the giant defensive tackles the Titans usually like, Mahelona is a high-energy guy who could be used in the rotation early.
ESPN/Scouts Inc: grade=61, #14 ranked DT, ranked #145 out of top 150 players…A classic one-gap DT prospect…A fine athlete at the position…Fires out of his stance quickly and wins a lot of one-on-one battles with his first two steps…He shows the burst to get through the LOS…He does a good job of using "rip", "swim" and "club" moves to rush the passer and stay off of blocks…He's at his best on the move…Has great quickness and good speed for his position…Is a powerful player with explosive hips and upper body strength…He shows good closing burst as an interior pass rusher…Also can be a big hitter as a tackler….Lacks ideal height and bulk…Plays with a narrow base…Is not cut out to play a two-gap scheme…Needs to be on the move in order to be productive at the DT position…He must continue to improve his overall technique and awareness…His recognition skills are inconsistent and he occasionally will take himself out of plays by getting too far upfield…He needs to play with more consistent leverage and do a better job with his hands when trying to disengage…He gets frustrated too easily by double team attention and needs to become more adept at splitting it…Can be a powerful hitter but must improve consistency as a tackler in space…He also has some minor durability issues after 2003 ankle injury…He also did not workout at the combine due to left ankle/MCL… Mahelona burst onto the scene as a first-year junior college arrival in 2004 but failed to meet high expectations as a senior in 2005, when he received far more double-team attention from opponents…He lacks great bulk and plays with a narrow base…He also is still a bit raw in terms of his overall technique and he will need to improve upon his ability to fight through the double-team in order to be effective in the NFL…However, the Hawaiian native shows a terrific combination of quickness, power and playmaking skills…Mahelona is best suited to play in a one-gap scheme in the NFL…For the right teams, Mahelona is worth selecting late on the first day or early on the second day of the 2006 draft.
M & D Draft Report: rating=18.06, #8 ranked DT, ranked #72 out of top 130 players…he is a very disruptive one gap performer, who has a super quick initial surge off the snap…does a good job finding an angle to run through and get hard inside penetration…he has real strong hands and he knows how to work himself around an offensive lineman…he runs the field from side to side well and he is outstanding in pursuit…good leverage type player, who plays low and he is an impact performer working the inside lanes…has really upgraded his pass rush skills and moves…very aggressive player out on the field and he has first rate read and react skills…he lacks great size and he has trouble taking on and shedding off much bigger blockers at the point of attack…is at times over aggressive and he will pull himself out of his assigned areas and create lanes for runners to go through…needs to play with a stronger base at the point of attack…he needs to continue to work on his pass rush techniques and counter moves…he is a strong angle/slanting type inside performer, who gets good penetration from the inside, but he needs to play in a one gap defense and let flow around to make plays.
GM Jr: grade=6.1, #7 ranked DT…Mahelona is a player that drew attention in 2004 while grading Tennessee because he was all over the field and was consistently making plays…In 2004, he led all SEC players in tackles for loss, which is pretty amazing for a defensive tackle…He is a quick-footed defensive tackle with the unique ability to explode off the ball and get backfield penetration consistently, but he needs to do a better job of bending his knees and staying under control to finish off the play and make the tackle or sack…He is a consistently disruptive force who is always in the backfield blowing up plays before they get started…He has the natural strength to be a real force at the point of attack as he can stack the point of attack on runs at him, can shed quickly and makes tackles on runs at him when he plays with leverage and uses hands aggressively…He is shorter than ideal so big OL can engulf him, tie him up and eliminate him from the play…His biggest problem is that he gets upright and plays high too often, which allows him to be blocked too easily when he does and causes him to miss/over-run tackles and sacks too often…Overall, Mahelona is the type of defensive tackle that is going to be a very good starter who consistently disrupts plays in the backfield and chases down ball carriers in backside pursuit…But he will need to play with leverage and better hand use in order to produce up to his ability level in the NFL.
NFL Draft Scout: #14 ranked DT, ranked #144 out of all players, projected round 4…Mahelona was a physical presence in the trenches for the Volunteers the last two years…The Hawaii native is a disruptive force with the tenacity and technique to tie up multiple blockers in order to free up the team's edge rushers to attack the backfield…Has a squat frame with a big bubble and very thick legs...Combative one-gap player with very quick acceleration coming off the snap...Plays until the whistle and knows how to use his frame to anchor and take up space...Uses his size well, leaning into blockers to gain advantage in one-on-one confrontations...Best when operating at the line of scrimmage, as he lacks the speed to play outside the box...Physical drag-down tackler who can take vicious arm swipes and reach to haul down the ball carrier from behind...Has enough burst off the snap to gain leverage and the short area speed to close on the pocket...Best when shooting the gaps, but has enough acceleration to be effective lining up on the edge...Has as decent array of pass rush moves (club, swim, rip) and takes good angles to flush out the quarterback...Has the hip explosion and upper body strength to generate pop upon contact...Very active with his hands, utilizing his upper body power to reach, jerk and pull blockers down...Has the straight-line charge power to push guards back on their heels, and gets good hand placement in attempts to separate…Despite his upper body strength and thick legs, he lacks a good anchor to prevent from getting overpowered by bigger blockers...Lacks a feel for blocking schemes and can be fooled by misdirection...Falls to the ground too much in attempts to maintain position at the point of attack and struggles to shed vs. double teams...Needs to keep his shoulders square when attacking rush lanes, as he gets pushed around when he tries to combat counter moves...Best when stationed at the line of scrimmage, as he runs out of gas when he has to pursue outside the box…Mahelona has a squat frame with a soft midsection…He struggles at times to stay low in his pads and can easily be washed out of the play when he gets too upright coming off the ball…He is a disruptive force with his straight-line burst, but does not have the timed speed or stamina to chase down plays outside the box…He needs to use his burst to get a jump on guards and tackles, as he lacks the lower body strength to power through double teams…Mahelona is a classic one-gap performer who is best when pushing the pocket or occupying space in the middle of the field…He lacks the lateral range to pursue down the line, but has good speed when moving forward…He hits ball carriers with a thud and has the hand strength to make arm tackles…He is a decent pass rusher with an array of moves, but falls down a lot in pursuit and does not have the change of direction agility to redirect…Despite his upper body strength, he is more of a leaner and does not stay square, struggling to shed…He plays with a good motor, but despite his aggression in one-on-one situations, he tends to shy away from double teams and does not have the speed to elude blocks…Mahelona's poor feel for blocking schemes sees him get frustrated easily when his first move fails. He is better suited for a one-gap system, but needs to play with better leverage and must improve his balance…Not the massive, Albert Haynesworth, brand of interior defensive lineman but a guy who can be an effective part of the rotation.
Jonathan Orr (WR, 6’ 2”, 197 lbs, Wisconsin-Sr, Sp=4.31, Wonderlic=19) Titans 7th pick, #172 pick overall (6th round ), 21st WR to be drafted:
Career Highlights: Started 26 of 50 games for the Badgers...Only the 10th player in school history to catch 100 passes in a career...His 1,690 yards receiving rank eighth on the school's career list…His 17 touchdown catches rank fourth in school history...In 2005 he was All-Big Ten Conference honorable mention by The NFL Draft Report and Started all year at flanker, ranking third on the team with 33 receptions for 554 yards (16.8 avg) and six touchdowns…Freshman All-America second-team and freshman all-Big Ten Conference first-team pick by The Sporting News.
Kiper: rating=7.5, #19 ranked WR, not ranked in the top 100 players…a starter each of his 4 years in Madison, Orr finally started to put it all together in 2005 and became a more reliable option in the Badgers’ passing attack…After a redshirt season in 2001, he started 13 of 14 games in which he appeared, and led the team with 842 yards receiving and 8 TDs on 47 receptions…Orr’s production plummeted as a 3rd year sophomore, as he only started one game, and caught just 7 passes on the year…he was still a marginal performer in 2004, finishing with just 13 receptions for 177 yards…he reestablished himself as a go to receiver this past season and recorded 688 yards and 8 TDs on 40 receptions…like his teammate Brandon Williams, Orr played in all 51 games of his college career, and while his numbers were up and down, his 2005 production is probably the best indicator of his overall ability…he struggled with drops early on at Wisconsin and he had a bad habit of rounding off his patterns…this past season his routes were crisper and he did a better job of catching the ball and eliminating the costly drops that plagued his first 3 seasons…he finally started to put it all together and give a better indication of just where his true potential lies…even so , there figures to be some mixed opinion with Orr when projecting him to the next level…he really wasn’t a dependable wide out until this past season, appearing to be no better than a later round possibility heading into 2005…how much of a push he made up the draft board remains to be seen.
Draft Insiders: rating=70, #22 ranked WR, not ranked in the top 120 players…agile senior receiver completed an erratic career in the Big Ten displaying big play ability at times and periods of little production during other times…he is a fine athlete who has been timed at under 4.4 by pro scouts…he has a big athletic frame and fine movement skills that indicated an All-American career…he began his stay at Wisconsin with a huge freshman season…he displays sure hands and good body control that allowed him to become an early playmaker in the talented Big Ten…playing in the Badgers’ run oriented offense, he has been slow to progress in the finer points of the position, in addition to some minor injuries that limited his playing time…he has separation speed to get deep and hit the home run and his numbers suffered significantly over his late career without working with a quality passer…his route running needs work especially at the breakpoint to run better patterns and get more consistency in his separation in the shorter and intermediate zones…he has seen some double coverage vs. top competition that also limited his production…he has AA on the outside, good body control and leaping skills with the separation speed to get open consistently…he is a dangerous deep threat but still raw in that aspect of the passing game after playing in a run oriented attack…he is a good athlete whose route running and overall understanding of pass coverage needs strong coaching and development...he is not sudden coming off the line of scrimmage and needs footwork and technique development, especially his hand use in that regard…he must get stronger not only to beat the jam, but also so that he does not get pushed off his routes and show he can make the key reception over the middle…he is a natural pass catcher with some ability to run afterwards, though he lacks much elusiveness initially that limits his fine speed…he is an underdeveloped playmaker with the talent to rank much higher but his lack of refinement in key areas indicates a longer learning curve…he needs to progress quickly if he expects to win a roster spot and become a factor in 3 WR sets…he is similar to the Browns’ Antonio Bryant in size, athleticism and development…good 2nd day pick with big time talent but one of the classes biggest boom or busts prospects.
PFW: grade=5.33, #23 ranked WR, ranked #141 out of top 150 players…very naturally gifted athlete with excellent timed speed…is able to adjust to the ball and has solid hands…has fluid movement skills and the ability to get behind defenders…does not play to timed speed…lacks fire in his belly and does not play with a sense of urgency…not a great competitor...played in a simple passing game and was not heavily used…can be slow to get off the line of scrimmage and can do a better job using his hands to avoid the jam…average blocker…best year came as a freshman…had a lot of success early and has not been able to sustain it… looks like a first rounder on paper, but he never evolved into the kind of playmakers Lee Evans and Brandon Williams have been…historically, Wisconsin’s offense has handcuffed receivers and limited their opportunities, but in Orr’s case something is missing.
The Sporting News: grade=5.4, #22 ranked WR, not ranked in the top 99 players…Has good size and strength…Possesses elite speed to be a terrific downfield threat…Has the height, wingspan and leaping ability to be effective on fade routes…Makes sensational catches…Catches passes away from his body…Creates big plays after the catch…Is extremely inconsistent…Is selfish and loses his temper often…Must add bulk; is relatively weak…Must polish route-running skills…Must improve recognition skills, instincts and smoothness…Gives away his routes too soon and gets out of cuts too late…Struggles to separate from defenders…Loses focus too easily…Is timid when running routes over the middle…Doesn't sustain blocks long…Orr has limitless potential but lacks the consistency or the drive to become great…Even as a senior, he showed game-breaking qualities at times but then was a non-factor at other times…Orr has terrific NFL measurable skills but his routes, attitude and performance must become much more consistent…If Orr had his head on straight, he would be a Day 1 pick, for sure…Instead, he is a developmental prospect worthy of only a mid-fifth round selection…Is a tall, long strider with inconsistent hands…Is a big target…Has some straight-line running ability, but not much quickness…Is raw and a developmental prospect.
ESPN/Scouts Inc: grade=62, #16 ranked WR, ranked #140 out of top 150 players…Is tall and has a good wingspan…Shows elite downfield speed…Has the potential to become a defense-stretching vertical receiver in the NFL…He can create mismatches with his height and speed combo…He has the height, arm length and leaping ability to become a weapon on sideline routes and on fade routes in the red zone…He flashes the ability to make the acrobatic catch…Does a good job of adjusting to the deep ball and catching over his shoulder…He has the speed to take it the distance if he gets an angle or a crease after the catch…He is willing and works hard as a stalk-blocker…An erratic performer…Gets frustrated by his role in a run-oriented offensive scheme…Is lean and needs to add bulk…Not overly strong or physical…Is an inconsistent route runner…Seems to lack recognition skills, instincts and savvy…He gears down too much when going into his breaks and he telegraphs his intermediate routes too often…He simply disappears from games…Lacks the playmaking skills of a clutch and/or consistent performer…He does not show the know-how to separate as a short-to-intermediate route runner…He becomes tentative when working over the middle of the field…His hands and concentration are inconsistent…Also, he is a willing blocker but shows poor technique and strength to sustain at times…Orr redshirted in 2001 before taking over as a 13-game starter in 2002…As a senior in 2005, Orr finished with 688 yards and eight TDs on 40 receptions…Orr was a lot more productive as a senior than he was the previous two seasons, but he still has to be considered an underachiever and erratic performer when looking at the full body of work…Orr has good overall size and explosive top-end speed…He flashes game-breaking qualities at times (see Indiana, Northwestern and Penn State in 2005) but will completely disappear from games at other times (see Michigan, Illinois and Iowa in 2005)…Orr must become much more consistent as a route runner and more physical and aggressive as a football player in order to make it as an NFL contributor…There is no question that Orr has better NFL "measurables" than his teammate Brandon Williams, but Orr is nowhere near as polished or reliable…That's why Williams should come off the board a round or two higher than when Orr is selected, likely as a developmental prospect early on Day 2.
M & D Draft Report: rating=17.45, #16 ranked WR, not ranked in the top 130 players…was regarded as one of the top ten football prospects in the state of Michigan when he came out of high school…he was also a top track sprinter in high school who was clocked in the 100 meter dash at 10.6 seconds…he has outstanding foot speed and quickness…he shoots off the line of scrimmage in a blur and he can really stretch open the field…he has good size and he knows how to use his bulk very well…smooth route runner who comes out of his cuts and breaks well...he has excellent leaping and timing skills with the ball in flight…very effective player in the red zone…inconsistent performer, who at times does not play up to his timed speed…he has a laid back personality and he must learn to push himself harder…needs work on becoming a more refined route runner and set-up artist...seems to get down on himself and lose focus when he is not that involved in the game plan...below average blocker…he has the physical ability to develop into a fine NFL receiver, but his lack of real drive and “want-to” raises some red flags…he is too good of a player to not produce more out on the field.
GM Jr: grade=5.8, #23 ranked WR…Orr is a receiver who really disappointed me because he does not play up to his height, weight and speed combination…He is a tall receiver with the quick feet to accelerate to full speed quickly, and once he gets to full speed, he has the speed to get down the field…He has the hands, body control, coordination and concentration to catch any pass he can get his hands on and has consistently shown the ability to twist and contort his body to make the very tough grab…Despite natural athleticism, he is very upright running his routes and struggles to get in and out of cuts quickly…He mainly ran quick stop routes and short drag routes, so he is going to need work to run all routes sharply…He is thin for his height, does not play aggressively and lacks the bulk/strength to consistently to break tackles and consistently gain yards after contact…Overall, Orr is a tall and athletic receiver with the very good hands to consistently make many tough catches…He is going to be drafted higher than he is rated here because of his measureables and 40 time, but will struggle to develop into an elite receiver in the NFL…He is much more likely to develop into an inconsistent starting receiver who consistently catches the ball very well, but never becomes the big-play receiver his 40 time says he should be.
NFL Draft Scout: #11 ranked WR, ranked #90 out of all players, projected round 4…Family Consumer Education major...Father is a college professor and his mother is an executive investment banker…Orr is another in a line of standout athletes with exceptional speed to perform at wide receiver for the Badgers…He has the explosive burst and ball adjustment skills of Lee Evans and the size, athletic ability and toughness catching the ball in traffic of Chris Chambers…He is the consummate team player, but his production the last three years has yet to match the promise he showed as a freshman…In 2002, Orr exploded on the collegiate scene for the Badgers, finishing second on the squad with 47 receptions for 842 yards (17.9 avg) and eight touchdowns, earning second-team freshman All-America honors from The Sporting News…The Badgers then shifted to a predominantly ground-based attack over the next three years…The 2005 season saw Orr become more involved in the passing game…He had his best season since his freshman year, catching 33 passes for 554 yards (16.8 avg) and six touchdowns…But it was also filled with inconsistency…Five of his touchdowns and 215 of his receiving yards came during a two-game span vs. Indiana and Northwestern…Has outstanding quickness and burst to get into his pass routes...Eats up the cushion quickly and is quick to plant and cut to push defensive backs out of their backpedal...Weaves to leverage and set up the defender and has very quick transition skills in and out of his breaks...Settles into the zone easily and is aware of the boundaries and chains...Becomes available quickly on the blitz and does a nice job of tracking the ball in flight...Has the vertical speed to consistently get open and does a great job of turning defensive backs on routes, showing that extra gear needed to run away from his opponent...Has sure hands, doing a good job of securing the ball before turning upfield...Effective at slipping and sliding into vacant spots underneath, using his frame to shield the ball from defenders...Has the acceleration to run down overthrown passes...Is capable of tracking the ball and catching it with his natural hands, doing a nice job of catching the ball away from the body...Quick to turn in and out of his patterns, getting his head around immediately to react to the ball in flight…Has lacked production and consistency, catching only 46 of 99 passes targeted to him the last two years...Will fight for the ball, but has had concentration lapses the last two seasons (see 2005 Purdue and Iowa games)...Some scouts question his RAC (run after catch) ability, as Orr does not demonstrate the leg drive and power to break tackles on the initial hit...Gives adequate effort as a cut blocker, but lacks the strength to be more than a position/pester type when asked to block at the line of scrimmage...Needs to develop better hand usage to stave off defenders in press coverage, as he was often rerouted when trying to get a release (needs a clear lane to get into gear)…Orr is a special athlete with outstanding timed speed…He is a naturally strong player who is field fast and carries his equipment well…He is very sudden out of his cuts and can catch cornerbacks off balance, as he sets up defenders well and has the speed to run by his opponent, showing a great kick to the ball in the open field…Orr is a natural hands catcher who has the body control and flexibility to make proper body adjustments in attempts to catch off-target passes…He is very aggressive upfield after the catch, showing head fakes and moves to set up the defender…On the field, few receivers can match Orr's reaction to the ball and body adjustment skills…He has that blazing first step to get into his routes immediately, but he needs to use his hands and long arms better to defeat jams and avoid contact at the line of scrimmage…Because of his marginal RAC (run after catch) ability, he is used mostly on curls, crossing patterns and underneath routes…He also needs to work on other areas of his game…He is more of a position blocker who makes good effort, but does not have the raw power to be effective in that area when asked to block in-line…The coaches claim he has good field alertness, but he showed signs of mental lapses (see 2005 Purdue and Iowa games) on the field, as he dropped several easily catchable balls because he failed to secure it before turning upfield…He also had problems with his release in several games, as more physical defensive backs had a field day jamming him at the line…He is smart enough to create opportunities for himself, but unless a pro team can find a way for him to be more consistent, Orr will continue to be one of the enigmas at this position.
Holy moses WoodVegas, thanks foir doing all of that. Really interesting to see all of the "experts" opinions pieced together. Thing that suprised me the most was Tullochs and Nandes wonderlic scores, they were far better then I expected, especially Nandes.
Cortland Finnegan (FS/KR/CB, 5’ 10”, 188lbs, Samford-Sr, Sp=4.34) Titans 8th pick, #215 pick overall (7th round) 11th FS to be drafted:
Career Highlights: His 338 career tackles are the second-most ever by a Samford defensive back...Holds the NCAA Division 1-AA career-record with a kickoff return average of 28.3 yards, topping the previous mark of 26.4 yards by Lamont Brightful of Eastern Washington (1998-2001)...Led the team in tackles in each of his final three seasons...Set a Samford game-record with 263 kickoff return yards vs. Murray State in 2002…In 2005 he was an All-American first-team selection by The NFL Draft Report and the American Football Coaches Association, adding third-team honors from the Associated Press and Sports Network...All-Ohio Valley Conference first-team choice...Started every game at free safety, leading the team in tackles for the third consecutive year...Posted 98 tackles (48 solos) with two stops behind the line of scrimmage...Caused and recovered a fumble...Had a 28-yard interception return for a touchdown and deflected seven passes...Ranked 20th nationally with 15 kickoff returns for 376 yards (25.1 avg) and finished ninth in the nation with 14 punt returns for 212 yards (15.1 avg) and a touchdown…In 2004 he was an All-OVC first-team choice and started every game at free safety, leading the team with 86 tackles (37 solos)…In 2003 he was an All-American third-team pick by the Sports Network, All-OVC first-team choice as a defensive back and third-team selection as a returner, adding OVC Defensive Player of the Year honors...Started every game in 2003, leading the team with a career-high 108 tackles…In 2002 he was Named All-American as a kick returner and selected I-AA All-Independent Special Teams Player of the Year.
Kiper: rating=5.0, #79 ranked CB…no write up.
Draft Insiders: rating=62, #36 ranked CB…no write up.
PFW: grade=4.30, #88 ranked CB…no write up.
The Sporting News: 3.5, #42 ranked CB…Has lightning speed; can run with almost every receiver in the league…Is versatile, especially as a special teams player…Has above-average athleticism…Is elusive…Is drastically undersized; won’t compete for jump balls and is often overwhelmed in one-on-one matchups…Level of competition is a concern after playing on the small school level…Finnegan can and should be used mostly on special teams…With his speed and athletic ability he can help most as a kick returner…This fast cornerback also can be a fall-back option in the return game.
ESPN/Scouts Inc: grade=30, #8 ranked return specialist…no write up.
M & D Draft Report: no ranking or write up.
NFL Draft Scout: #25 ranked CB, ranked #200 out of all players, projected round 5-6…Finnegan is a perfect example that big things come in little packages…Despite his compact frame, opposing offensive coordinators were well aware of Cortland's big-play ability and were wise to gear their game plan away from his territory the last four years…While he showed excellent range from the free safety position, his quickness and man coverage skills could see him shift to the demanding left cornerback position in the pros, as he is the quick twitch type that teams look for at that spot…Well-defined athlete with muscular arms and thighs...Aggressive tackler who plays until the whistle...Competes for the ball in a crowd and has excellent recovery quickness...Outstanding kickoff returner with a sudden burst after fielding the ball...Reads and reacts to the plays instinctively, showing the quickness to maintain position on the receivers in deep routes...Smooth turning out of his backpedal and has a sharp initial burst to get a good jump on the ball...Has steady acceleration and straight-line speed on his return attempts...Times the pass well, displaying the ability to compete for the ball at its high point...Natural pass interceptor who reaches and picks off the ball with consistent ease...Has the ability to generate pop on contact when he keeps his pad level down and shows the foot agility to mirror the tight ends and slot receivers throughout the route…Frame lacks any more room for additional growth...Adequate performer in run support, as he can get downhill and take good angles, but tends to get bounced around too much when asked to step up and fill the rush lanes...Needs to extend his arms better in order to secure and wrap...While he has a smooth turning motion, he tends to get too high in his backpedal, showing stiffness in his hips...Lacks the valid instincts to play cornerback, as he looks unsure of route progression in man coverage and frequently bites on play action...Will sometimes side-pedal, preventing him from getting an explosive break on the ball near the point of attack...Good position tackler, but lacks the overall strength to explode behind his hits...Turns his back on the ball too often when covering deep…Put up a 4.33 or 4.34 at his pro day, making him an attractive pick well after the Titans missed several streaks of CBs.
Sports Illustrated: #55 ranked CB...Four-year starter awarded multiple All-Conference and All-America honors since his sophomore campaign…Led the team in tackles for the third straight season as a senior posting 98/1/7…Also averaged 15.1 yards on 14 punt returns and 25.1 yards on 15 kick returns…Athletic prospect with marginal size. Instinctive and quickly locates the ball…Explodes up the field in run defense, works hard in coverage and has a quick break to the play…Tenacious punt returner who follows blocks throughout the play…Undersized, not strong at the point and has tackles broken…Struggles in man coverage when his back is to the ball…A high-revving defender, Finnegan would be an asset on special teams in the NFL…Projection: Undrafted Free Agent.
Spencer Toone (OLB, 6’ 2”, 238 lbs, Utah-Sr, Sp=4.69) Titans 9th pick, #245 pick overall (7th round), 18th OLB to be drafted:
Career Highlights: He produced 10 career double-digit tackle games and in just three seasons, he finished his career ranked 10th all-time at Utah in total tackles with 293…Toone played one year at Ricks Junior College prior to serving on a LDS church mission to Australia (2000-02)…He led Ricks in tackles and kickoff returns for touchdowns in 1999, with a long runback of 97 yards, as the team won the 1999 Real Dairy Bowl…In his first season at Utah, Toone was elected to Utah's football leadership committee and attended the NCAA Leadership Conference in Orlando in May 2003…He was a CoSIDA Academic All-District VIII second-team selection while starting nine games at the Rover (right) linebacker position…In 2004 Toone earned All-Mountain West Conference honorable mention…He led the team with 115 tackles (40 solos), including one sack and four stops behind the line of scrimmage at the Rover position…He also recovered three fumbles and caused another…In 2005 he was team captain, was an academic All-America, and All-MWC first-team choice…He tied for the conference lead with 113 tackles (52 solos) and had 2.5 sacks with five stops for losses, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery…In 36 games at Utah, Toone started 33 times…He finished his career ranked 10th all-time with 293 tackles (109 solos)…He had 3.5 sacks for minus-17 yards, 12 stops for losses of 28 yards, four pass deflections and a blocked kick…He also recovered five fumbles and caused two others.
Kiper: rating=5.0, #48 ranked OLB…no write up.
Draft Insiders: rating=60, #35 ranked OLB…no write up.
PFW: grade=4.80, #29 ranked OLB…no write up.
The Sporting News: grade=2.0, #47 ranked OLB…Works hard, hits hard and is a solid tackler…Plays well in the open field…Is most effective in pursuit…Is inconsistent…Is often fooled on double moves and play fakes…Lacks great field awareness…Struggles to shed blocks…Toone is a solid player who never stops working hard, but he lacks the size and strength to handle multiple tasks on the field…A speedy, mature linebacker with a solid work ethic, Toone could be immediate contributor on special teams.
ESPN/Scouts, Inc: grade=30, #35 ranked OLB…no write up.
M & D Draft Report: rating=16.31, #29 ranked OLB…no write up.
GM Jr: grade=5.0, not ranked…Toone is a smart and instinctive linebacker who sniffs out the play quickly, gets started to the ball fast and has the straight-line playing speed to chase down plays in pursuit…He is one of those guys whose consistent effort enables him to make more plays than you expect…He has the bulk/strength to hold ground vs. blockers when he takes them on aggressively at the point of attack…He does a good job getting outside to make the tackle on the running back right after the catch on screen passes…Toone is a straight-line athlete who is limited in all-around athleticism -- he lacks agility and struggles to play well out in space…He can't adjust on the move to handle quick cutbacks by running backs and is not smooth or fluid dropping off the ball into zone coverage…He struggles to cover tight ends and running backs in man-to-man coverage due to a lack of athleticism…While he is a very competitive player, he is not a warrior-type aggressive player who plays with the all-out attacking style…Toone is a short linebacker with good straight-line playing speed which combines with his instincts to let him consistently make plays when he has a clear path chasing after the ball in pursuit…He does not, however, move well through traffic and can be bounced around by blockers which causes him to not make nearly as many plays when he has to deal with blockers consistently…He is a limited athlete who lacks the agility and flexibility to drop into pass coverage smoothly and struggles to adjust and tackle consistently well out in space…He is going to have to make it in the NFL as a special teams player because -- due to his limited athleticism and struggles vs. blockers -- he is unlikely to make an impact on defense.
NFL Draft Scout: #33 ranked OLB, ranked #428 out of all players, projected FA…The three-year starter was a disruptive force for the Utes, piling up a considerable amount of tackles during his career…Has good muscle definition that is even-proportioned and good weight room strength...Alert on the field and quick to read and react to the play...Has adequate balance in his straight-line charge and takes good angles working his way through trash to make the play...Shows good effort and desire to close on the ball...Decent hitter who will not explode behind his tackles, but does a nice job of wrapping and dragging down when he has position...Active using his hands to jam and reroute the tight ends...Good at trailing receivers in the short area...Gets adequate depth in his pass drops, despite stiff hips...If he has an unimpeded lane to the ball, he will make plays in the backfield…Too stiff in his hips to turn and run on the ball or redirect when he gets reckless and outruns the play...Quick to locate the ball, but needs to show more urgency...Does not use his hands effectively to shed blocks and struggles to disengage when offensive linemen get hold of his pads...His weight room strength sometimes does not translate to the field, especially when he has to control a blocker...Gets out of control too often at the tackle point and will miss a few clean shots...Too stiff in his hips to react to the ball in flight...Does not always anticipate passes or understand route progression working in the zone...When he gets out of control, he fails to play off blocks…Graduated in May 2005 with a degree in Speech Communication Science and is presently working on his MBA.
Sports Illustrated: #32 ranked OLB...Three-year starter awarded All-Conference honors the past two seasons…Led the team in tackles as a senior posting 113/5/2.5 after a junior campaign of 115/4/1…Run-and-chase linebacker best playing downhill…Displays solid sideline-to-sideline range, works through the traffic and makes plays in all directions of the field…Effective in pursuit, fast to the flanks and gets depth on drops…Not efficient, takes a lot of missteps and constantly over-pursues the action…Bites on ball fakes and displays marginal skill in pass coverage…Easily smothered at the point by blocks…Possessing solid size/speed numbers for weak side linebacker, Toone must significantly improve his skill in pass defense to have any shot of making a roster at the next level…Projected: Undrafted Free Agent.
Quinton Ganther (RB, 5’ 9 ½”, 219 lbs, Utah-Sr, Sp=4.50, Wonderlic=15) Titans 10th pick, #246 pick overall (7th round), 15th RB to be drafted:
Career Highlights: Only played in 23 games at Utah, but ranks twelfth in school history with 1,774 yards rushing...Became the eighth player in school history to rush for over 1,000 yards in a season...His 1,120 yards on the ground in 2005 rank fifth in Utah history... After graduating from high school, Ganther attended Citrus (Glendora, Calif.) College where he earned All-American and All-Western State Conference honors as he set school records for season and career rushing and all-purpose yards…He set Citrus College career records with 2,729 yards rushing and 3,036 all-purpose yards...His 1,490 yards on the ground and 1,679 all-purpose yards in 2003 set Citrus College season marks...Averaged 107.21 yards per game rushing during his 42-game collegiate career…In 2005 he was All-Mountain West Conference second-team selection and started 10 of 11 games (came off the bench vs. North Carolina) at tailback, leading the team and ranking third in the conference with 205 carries for 1,120 yards (5.5 avg) and seven touchdowns…In 2004 he was All-Mountain West Conference honorable mention during his first season at Utah and finished second on the team with 654 yards and two touchdowns on 109 carries (6.0 avg)...In 2005 he suffered a left knee sprain (MCL) on 10/26 in a non-contact practice…He had to have fluid drained from his knee on 11/02 and was forced to sit out the Wyoming game (11/05)…The injury would hamper him (soreness) the rest of the regular season…His 430-pound bench press was the best on the 2005 squad and his 545-pound squat ranked third…Nickname is “Q”.
Kiper: rating=7.5, #14 ranked RB, not ranked in the top 100 players…a strong kid who tests a bit faster than he plays on the field, Ganther should have a chance to make a team as a backup…he spent 2 seasons at Citrus College at the JUCO level and put up record-setting performances…his best game as a senior came in the Emerald Bowl vs. Georgia Tech, where his 120 yards rushing included a 41 yard TD run…when you watch him with the pads on, he looks like a between the tackles type of running back…however, he did show home run ability and he tests out faster than he plays…he can also break tackles and has decent balance as a ball carrier…while probably not starter material at the pro level, he has a chance to work his way onto a roster and see action as a backup in the NFL.
Draft Insiders: rating=65, #21 ranked RB, not ranked in the top 120 players…stocky senior tailback has been a fine performer for the Utes over his short 2 year stay in the MWC after an All-American JC career…he was one of the most productive runners in the nation during that short period, averaging close to 6 yards per carry…he is a powerfully built runner who runs in a downhill fashion, displaying power to run through or over tacklers in the process…he has a strong lower body to break tackles and basic running skills of vision, balance and decision making, allowing him to maximize each rushing attempt…he has excellent strength that translates well to the playing field and converts into many extra yards…he has fine initial quickness to the line of scrimmage with lateral cutting skills to change direction and cutback skills to hit an opening along the line…he gets to the second level easily with the ability to pick and slide and get outside…he has both the quickness and strength to get to the second level and turn up field with adequate speed to make a big play, though, he lacks the explosive speed to be a consistent game breaker…whether he has the power and toughness to pound inside with any type of consistency at the NFL level remains to be seen, especially as a game to game performer…he has the body type that succeeds as a pro runner…he is very adept at picking his holes with the acceleration through the line to break into the secondary…as a receiver, he has sure hands and the ability to run routes, especially screen passes, though still raw in many aspects of that role…he can make a play on the perimeter after the catch and follows his blockers well in the open field…he has little exposure to picking up the blitz and needs to begin with all the fundamentals in that aspect of the game…probable late round pick only with tools to possibly start, but only after further development as a receiver and blocker...good late addition with the talent to surprise.
PFW: grade=5.15, #17 ranked RB, not ranked in the top 150 players…strong and thickly built to run between the tackles…bench presses twice his weight and has great weight room strength…will churn his legs and fight for extra yards and shows a burst to bounce outside…adequate vision and balance to find creases and stay on his feet…is on the short side and runs tall for his size…not a heavy duty back…not a very powerful runner and leaves too many yards on the field…not overly elusive and does not have long speed…gets caught from behind…has small hands and has had some problems with ball security…needs to mature and can blow hot and cold with the wind…marginal blocker…a good college back who is not very fast, explosive or creative and is not going to make a lot of big plays.
The Sporting News: grade=4.8, #19 ranked RB, not ranked in the top 99 players…Has good size, speed and strength…Shows wiggle to make would-be tacklers miss in open field…Also can drop shoulders and run over defenders…Shows a good burst…Is a productive inside runner -- doesn't hesitate, and has the strength to push piles in short-yardage situations…As a receiver, shows reliable hands and the adeptness to run after the catch…Played in a spread offense; usually had wide gaps to run through…Is only adequate in pass protection; must develop better blitz awareness to react and set up more quickly…As a receiver, doesn't recognize coverage well or find soft spots in zones…Ganther has great measurable skills, explosiveness and speed…With impressive numbers during his pre-draft workouts, he has shown enough potential to be drafted in Round 7…The Titans regard him as potential third-down, change-of-pace back.
ESPN/Scouts Inc: grade=31, #24 ranked RB, not ranked in the top 150 players…He is a compact, well-built back with a very good center of gravity…He has a good running style…He is a patient back that sees his blocks developing and will rarely get caught running up the heels of his linemen…Keeps his legs pumping in traffic…Shows good body control and balance…Is able to quickly change directions in order to exploit backside lane…He has good quickness and initial burst…Shows reliable hands as an underneath receiver…He is not an overpowering back…He fails to break enough tackles and he does not run as strong as his bulk would indicate…He lacks ideal height…He possesses adequate but not good speed...is quicker than fast…Does not show a second-gear in the open field…Is inconsistent as a blocker and will need to improve his technique in order to match up in that facet of the NFL game…He projects as nothing more than a reserve running back and special teams' contributor at the next level…Ganther runs hard, he is a reliable receiver out of the backfield and he has the tools to develop into an effective special teams' player…However, he doesn't have the power or top-end speed to develop into an every-down back…He projects as seventh round pick or a rookie free agent.
M & D Draft Report: rating=16.42, #23 ranked RB, not ranked in the top 130 players…he is a tough inside runner, who is extremely strong in the lower body…he displays very good body balance and lean…he shows a real quick initial burst up the field and he clearly sees the cutback lanes…he has excellent leg drive and good field vision…he picks his legs up high and he rarely gets tripped up by low would be tacklers…good receiver coming out of the backfield…very competitive young man who gives great effort on each and every play…he lacks great size and he is not considered a big play run threat…he is not a real creative open field runner and he basically takes the play on a straight line up the field…average at best blocker…this young man is making a push late to get the attention of NFL Scout and he had a very productive senior season.
GM Jr: grade=5.5, #20 ranked RB… Ganther was primarily a backup running back until his senior season at Utah…He is a strong, physical runner who runs hard between the tackles, fights for extra yards and often gains yards after contact…He can keep his feet vs. hard hits and arm/grab tackles, but he does not show the ability to break tackles consistently…His best assets are his size, strength and smarts, which give him the versatility to run strong between the tackles, block well in pass protection and on the move and can catch passes well…The trouble is that he lacks the explosive burst through the hole, the elite playing speed to take runs the distance and the elusiveness to make tacklers miss…Overall, I would not draft Ganther because in my opinion he is a "tweener,” however, I would definitely sign him as a free agent because I believe that if he can bulk up to 235 pounds, he can challenge for a roster spot as a backup running back, primary short-yardage back and backup fullback/H-back.
NFL Draft Scout: #15 ranked RB, ranked #161 out of all players, projected round 4-5…Ganther is a quick, elusive runner with excellent strength…Has very good weight room strength, thick legs, good upper body muscle tone and the balance and foot quickness to adjust in his running stride...Shows good pick-and-slide agility to redirect when the inside rush lanes are clogged...Makes quick decisions once he locates the seams...Has enough of a short burst to escape trash...Adequate short area receiver who is effective on screens and flares...Runs with a normal stride and has the leg drive that makes it difficult for defenders to tackle him in isolated coverage…Undersized athlete with small hands...Needs to improve his pad level, as he runs too tall, causing the defense to push him back through the rush lanes...Needs to do a better job with ball security…He leaves the ball too exposed when trying to turn the corner...Has very good weight room strength, but a lack of size prevents him from consistently moving the pile...Does not have the second gear to elude in the second level...Lack of true acceleration limits him to short routes as a pass catcher...Good cut blocker, but does not have the bulk to stand his ground when taking on blitzers and pass rushers...Small hands and short arms pose problems competing for the jump ball…Ganther is a compactly built athlete with a thick lower frame and good upper body muscle tone, but his frame has reached maximum growth potential…He is a physical inside runner with good balance and initial quickness…He attacks the holes with good leg drive and while he is best utilizing his straight-line speed, he also has the change of direction agility to bounce around the corner…He demonstrates the balance and body control to quickly readjust and locate the cutback lanes…Ganther keeps his legs churning and is very hard to bring down in isolated coverage due to the strength he generates with his legs, but he needs to play at a lower pad level…When he gets too high in his stance, he struggles to move the pile, negating his impressive weight room strength…In 2005, Ganther had some ball security issues, putting the ball on the ground a career-high five times…He did not have problems running to the line, but left the ball exposed at times when trying to turn the corner…He also struggled some with the handoff exchange…Ganther got more opportunity to use his short area route running skills in 2005…He is really not a threat out of the backfield, but was effective on swing routes, screens and flares…He will extend to pluck the ball at its high point, but has smaller than ideal hands…He will make the easy grabs, but due to a lack of size, might not be able to win many battles for the jump ball…If Ganther can lower his pad level, he will be an effective between-the-tackles runner at the next level…He has made good strides as a short area receiver and shows good toughness and aggression as a cut blocker…He lacks size to face up blocking in pass protection and is more of a slasher than a runner that can simply explode into the second level…He will never be confused for a pile mover, especially when he gets too tall in his stance running with the ball…He does not have the pure speed to bounce the ball outside on a regular basis, but does have enough redeeming qualities to be an effective reserve within the right system at the pro level…Sociology major...Has a daughter, Somia
Next up will be a blurb on the UDFA's. If anyone sees any errors please let me know...I have found that C & P can do some strange things.
Colin Allred (OLB, 6’ 1”, 235 lbs, Baylor-Sr, Sp=4.85) UDFA:
NFL Draft Scout: #36 ranked OLB, ranked #469 out of all players, projected free agent…History major who has own computer repair business…In 2005 as a fifth-year senior he was an All-Big 12 candidate …He's posted 15 multiple-tackle performances in 26 career games at Baylor and closed his junior campaign with eight straight such performances…In 2004 he was a second-team Academic All-Big 12 honoree and played in all 11 games as a junior linebacker for the Bears.
The Sporting News: grade=3.7, #37 ranked OLB…Plays well against the run…Can make plays close to the line…Plays low to the ground, and shows solid tackling skills…Is undersized…Must add bulk and improve his lower-body strength…Has below-average speed with little quickness…Has trouble changing directions…Is overmatched if an offensive linemen gets his hands on him...Allred works well against the run and can get in position to make the tackle…He is a liability in pass coverage, and he lacks the quickness and speed to beat offensive linemen to the spot as a pass rusher…He likely will go undrafted.
ESPN/Scouts Inc: grade=30, #31 ranked OLB.
Kiper: rating=6.0, #14 ranked ILB.
PFW: grade=4.70, #42 ranked OLB.
M & D Draft Report: rating=16.28, #30 ranked OLB.
Moses Osemwegie (OLB, 5’ 11 ½”, 228 lbs, Vanderbilt-Sr, Sp=4.76) UDFA:
NFL Draft Scout: #32 ranked OLB, ranked #422 out of all players…One of the Southeastern Conference's leading defensive performers and the league's top active career tackler, Osemwegie has a knack for finding the football - and carries a punch with contact…A versatile player who has the ability to play any of the three linebacking positions, Osemwegie consistently brings his best play to the field… Osemwegie finished his senior season with 118 tackles, giving him 391 tackles for his career…He showed a lot of leadership, resilience and explosiveness, but he's just 5-11 1/2 and 220 pounds and can be knocked off line by the right scheme…He won't be selected on the first day, but he can help someone in the right scheme and situation…In 2005 he received postseason MVP Linebacker Award for second straight year...Voted to All-SEC team by both coaches and Associated Press writers...Topped squad with 66 solo tackles, 94 total tackles and six tackles for loss...Ranked among SEC leaders in primary and total tackle categories…Son of Mable Osemwegie and the late Dr. Moses Osemwegie, Sr...Mother, once a uniformed police officer, is currently an attorney with the Nashville Police Department.
The Sporting News: grade=3.5, #39 ranked OLB…Has adequate size, strength and speed…Shows great tackling skills, and is aggressive…Shows good change-of-direction skills…Is undersized, and must add bulk…Lacks quickness off the snap…Has limited range in zone coverage…Must improve technique…Osemwegie never stops hustling and works hard against the run, but his lack of size and experience could hold him back.
ESPN/Scouts Inc: grade-30, #28 ranked OLB.
Kiper: rating=6.0, #22 ranked OLB.
Draft Insiders: rating=60, #32 ranked OLB.
PFW: grade=4.80, #30 ranked OLB…team captain…good production…finds the ball and is very active…good motor…hustles, chases and pursues…will hit with force and knock the pile backward...defensive leader and tempo-setter…lacks ideal size and bulk…struggles taking on blocks and is not very fluid changing directions…does not have a good feel for receivers in zones…solid production should give him a chance to compete for a job.
M & D Draft Report: rating=16.24, #32 ranked OLB.
Sports Illustrated: #35 ranked OLB…Three-year starter awarded All-Conference honors since his junior campaign…Senior totals were 118/9.5/3 after 94/6 as a junior…Posted 126 tackles during his sophomore campaign….Explosive linebacker constantly around the action…Diagnoses the play, immediately locates the ball and takes good angles...Explosive up the field in run defense, gets depth on pass drops and is fast to the sidelines…Scrapes well in the box displaying sideline-to-sideline range…Undersized, slow to shed and can be engulfed at the point…A productive one-gap linebacker, Osemwegie has flown under the radar screen since his sophomore campaign. May not have the size to stand up on an every-down basis at the next level but should at least be a competent backup linebacker who stands out on special teams.
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