View Full Version : SI:Small-school sleepers in NFL draft

04-14-2008, 11:59 AM

The draft is less than two weeks away and football conversations center around the top prospects from the nation's biggest college football programs. Yet history has shown not all productive players in the draft come from major IA schools. Lane College's Jacoby Jones, with the Houston Texans, and Illinois State's Laurent Robinson, with the Atlatna Falcons, are just two small-school players who made impacts last year. So who are the top small-school sleepers in this year's draft? Here are a dozen names to remember.

Brad Roach, QB, Catawba: Roach is a 6-foot-6, 250-pound gunslinger who tossed 32 touchdown passes last season. He possesses the physical dimensions for a franchise to develop. Roach is a late-round selection that has privately worked out for the New York Giants and Houston Texans.

Tim Hightower, RB, Richmond: Scouts were surprised Hightower was not invited to the combine in February, especially after scoring 20 touchdowns last season. The 220-pound back later impressed by running 4.51 seconds in the 40 at his pro day. Hightower, a solid middle-round pick, has visited nearly a dozen franchises leading up to the draft including the Detroit Lions and Oakland Raiders, a pair of teams with great interest in his services.

Arman Shields, WR, Richmond: Shields is another Spider being hotly pursued by NFL clubs. His story is all the more interesting as Shields was sidelined after three games last season with knee injury. He came back to run a 4.45 at the combine. Shields, an outstanding receiver and return specialist, is being pursued by more than a half-dozen franchises and has made visits to see the Tampa Bay Bucs and New York Jets.

Brandon Keith, OL, Northern Iowa: Keith, who started his college career at Oklahoma, has watched his draft stock soar the past nine months. He capped off a solid combine performance with an even better pro day, running under five seconds in the 40 after weighing 340 pounds. Keith has visited a number of teams around the league including a pair of NFC East franchises, the New York Giants and Philadelphia Eagles.

04-14-2008, 01:51 PM
Roach is worth a look, and Keith is a good prospect. I am less interested in Hightower, and not at all interested in Sheilds

04-14-2008, 04:03 PM
Well, shoot. I just read the whole article, there is more than those four guys. I would rank them like this (for the Texans):
Brian Johnston
Thaddeus Coleman
Shawn McMackin
Andy Studebaker
Joe Mays
Carey Williams
Brad Roach
Brandon Keith
Tim Hightower
Brandon Carr
Vince Redd
Arman Sheilds

Errant Hothy
04-14-2008, 04:07 PM
Roach is worth a look, and Keith is a good prospect. I am less interested in Hightower, and not at all interested in Sheilds

Hightower will be in for a visit:

Texans | Hightower to visit in April
Wed, 26 Mar 2008 20:23:43 -0700

J.J. Pesavento, of Next Level Scouting, reports Richmond RB Tim Hightower will visit the Houston Texans April 3-4.

04-14-2008, 04:19 PM
Hightower will be in for a visit:

Eh. Big guy, decent speed. I am just not sold on him. However, if he succeeds I will be the first to admit that I was wrong. And if he becomes a Texan, I will definately cheer for him.

04-15-2008, 11:19 AM
Talk about small schools. What's up with this? Our practice squad QB this season, maybe? :thinking:


Texans | Team works out B. Roach
Tue, 15 Apr 2008 08:38:46 -0700

Tony Pauline, reporting for SI.com, reports the Houston Texans held a private workout with Catawba QB Brad Roach.



04-15-2008, 11:35 AM
the Texans already worked out this guy-

Brian Johnston, DE, Garden Webb: Johnston could well have been the biggest combine snub of 2008. He is a complete defender who totaled 145 tackles and 38 tackles for loss the past two years. Johnston measured 6-5 and 280 pounds at his pro day last month and ran the 40 under 4.7 seconds. Two dozen teams, including the Jacksonville Jaguars and Seattle Seahawks, have expressed strong interest in Johnston.

I'll give you another name, local kid Derrick Gray, Texas Southern. strongside DE well built with potential to add more weight almost 6050 270 (after eating all that BBQ at a friends last weekend). noticed him first watching Texas vs. the Nation bowl game, decent explosiveness, long arms, handles tackles well who are much bigger, can stretch sideline to sideline with good speed 4.89. was very productive on field, second-team All-SWAC 76 tackles, 24.5 for loss, 9.5 sacks and three forced fumbles.