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Old 02-22-2015   #1
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Default Bob McGinn on 2015 NFL Draft

Consistently one of the best in the biz, Bob drops actual scout's takes...

2015 NFL Draft Outlook
Quote:
Based on interviews with executives in personnel for five teams, it is possible to narrow down just a little bit the pool of players that might be considered by the Green Bay Packers regardless of position if they exercise their current 30th selection in the first round of the NFL draft April 30.

Prospects are conservatively divided into three categories: As Good As Gone — barring negative developments, these players have virtually no chance of reaching No. 30; Probably Gone — players who appear to have no better than a 50-50 chance of remaining on the board at No. 30; and The Next Level — players who figure to fall next.

The Packers have their own selection in all seven rounds. They're also likely to be awarded at least one compensatory pick next month for the losses of center Evan Dietrich-Smith (Tampa Bay) and wide receiver James Jones (Oakland).

Here's an early look at 55 players who figure to fit into these layers of the draft (underclassmen are denoted by asterisk).

AS GOOD AS GONE (10)

Amari Cooper*, WR, Alabama: 6-1, 211. In 2014, he broke the Southeastern Conference single-season record for receptions (124) and was second all-time in receiving yards (1,727). "Dynamic player," one scout said. "Quick, fast, agile, good hands. Difference-maker." Third-year junior with 228 receptions for 3,463 yards (15.2) and 31 TDs. "One of the better route runners to come out in a long, long time," another scout said. "Very skilled, explosive and fast." On Saturday, he ran 40 yards in 4.42 seconds.

Kevin White, WR, West Virginia: 6-3, 215. Junior-college player for two years. "He's more of a Larry Fitzgerald-type receiver in that he doesn't have great speed," said one scout. "I never see him beat people deep. But if he is even with them he's going to get the ball. Very good player." Caught 35 passes in 2013 for Mountaineers before breaking out with 109 for 1,447 yards (13.3) and 10 TDs in '14. "He's got another level to his game that I don't think we've seen yet," another scout said. Admits that he loves trash-talking opponents. Made a ton of money with 40 time of 4.35.

Brandon Scherff, T, Iowa: 6-4 1/2, 319. Part-time starter at LG as a redshirt freshman in 2011 before starting at LT from 2012-'14. "I like (Bryan) Bulaga, but I think this guy is better," said one scout. "I didn't think Bulaga could play left tackle, but I think this guy can. Everybody thinks he's the best guard, but I'd keep him at tackle and have him disprove he can't play there. He got hurt early last year and never missed a practice or a game." Like Bulaga, his arm length (33 3/8 inches) will be an issue for some teams. Massive hands (11 inches). "Real tough guy and can really run," another scout said. "Good technician. Little stiff. Kind of straight-line. Not real good change of direction. But when he gets you he mauls you. This guy is a lot stronger than Bulaga. He's tight and can't use his length. I think guard will be his best position." His 40-yard dash time was 5.05.

Andrus Peat*, T, Stanford: 6-7, 313. Third-year junior rotated at LT in 2012 before starting the past two years. "He's the most talented (O-lineman)," one scout said. "His dad was really talented but fat. The dad was probably 6-2." Todd Peat was a squatty guard for the Cardinals and Raiders from 1987-'93. "Ready-made NFL player," another scout said. "Left tackle or right tackle. Little bit like Jake Matthews. He won't be an overly dominating type athlete but just sound. Bigger than Jake. A very good, solid player, no question about it." Arms were 34 3/8, hands were 10 5/8.

Marcus Mariota*, QB, Oregon: 6-3½, 222. Heisman Trophy winner in 2014. "Kid's a good athlete," one scout said. "I kind of like him. But he's not a passer right now. He's a thrower. He's like a better Colin Kaepernick. Not that there's anything wrong with it, but this kid is kind of quiet. He's going to be a project the first year. But, other than Andrew Luck, all those guys are." Finished with a phenomenal NFL passer rating of 121.3, and also rushed for 2,237 yards (6.6) and 29 TDs. "You know he'll put the time in to be a good pro," said another scout. "That's about as big an obstacle as there is at the position: guys that are willing to put in the time." Hands were 9 7/8. Vertical jump of 36 inches. Ran 4.52.

Jameis Winston*, QB, Florida State: 6-3½, 231. Led Seminoles to national championship in 2013 and won the Heisman Trophy. "Has an uncanny ability to know what's around him and get himself out of trouble," one scout said. Finished with NFL passer rating of 107.9, and also rushed for 284 yards (2.0) and seven TDs. Has had numerous run-ins with the legal system. "Someone will take him in the first round, but how could you even let that guy in the building?" another scout said. "The second law of thermodynamics basically is the more ways something can happen, the more likely it is to happen. That's true of players. The more ways they can (expletive) up, the more chances they (expletive) up. This guy's got a lot of stuff that would lean him more likely to be a bust than a good player." Played two seasons of baseball at FSU as a closer-outfielder. "If he doesn't (mature) he won't be playing football," a third scout said. "Knows how to play the position. I don't think he's Andrew Luck. He's not a John Elway arm coming out, but he's a talented kid." Tested poorly with 4.97 40, 28½ vertical jump.

Melvin Gordon*, RB, Wisconsin: 6-1, 215. Finished second in Heisman Trophy voting as fourth-year junior. "Unique runner," one scout said. "He's got a little bit of Jamaal Charles in him. Upright, fast runner. He's quick and has very good feet." Surpassed 100 yards in 22 of his 45 games. Also fumbled six times in his last five games. "He's good, but against those slow (expletive) Big Ten guys," said another scout. "That's what bothers me a little bit." Played at Kenosha Bradford. Ran 4.52.

Leonard Williams*, DT, Southern California: 6-4½, 302. Nicknamed "Big Cat." "Probably the most talented player on the defensive side of the ball," said one scout. "He's an end and a three-technique. He's quick, strong and plays athletic." Has been compared to former Patriot Richard Seymour. Dominating presence for three seasons, finishing with 21 sacks and 36½ tackles for loss. "He's not a gigantic guy," another scout said. "He's not (Ndamukong) Suh. He's athletic. He moves around good. He played inside and was getting doubled and held and everything else."

Randy Gregory*, OLB-DE, Nebraska: 6-5, 235. Played two years of junior college and two seasons at Nebraska, where he piled up 17½ sacks and 29 tackles for loss. "I think he's better than Ziggy Ansah," one scout said. "He'll be pretty good. I think he could stand up, too." Sidelined for two games and playing sparingly in two others last season due to injury. "He's a run-around guy," another scout said. "Athletic. Can chase things down. I can't see him playing the point real well. He's not that big. (Wisconsin's Rob) Havenstein did a hell of a job against him."

Vic Beasley, OLB, Clemson: 6-3, 246. Fifth-year senior. "He's a rusher," one scout said. "He's a better football player right now than (Shaq) Thompson. "He's just running around being an athlete. If you played him as a 4-3 'will' (weak-side LB) you'd take away what he does best. He can really run. He understands leverage. They don't crush him." Two-year starter with 33 sacks and 52½ tackles for loss.

PROBABLY GONE (8)

DeVante Parker, WR, Louisville: 6-2½, 209. Hauled in 156 passes for 2,775 yards (17.8) and 33 TDs in four seasons. "He's a large, smooth, play-making receiver who has average speed," said one scout. "Very good hands. Has run after the catch." Dogged by injuries as a senior. "He's got size, speed and was dominating at the end of the season," said another scout. "He looks a little faster than (Kevin) White." Ran 4.45.

Ereck Flowers*, T, Miami: 6-6, 329. Third-year junior. "Big frame, good technician, good with his hands, good bulk and anchor," one scout said. "Has ability to hold up against power rushes but also can handle speed. Physically and athletically, probably more of a right tackle in the NFL." Started 2½ years at LT. Arms were 34½. Led O-line with 37 bench-press reps.

Arik Armstead*, DE, Oregon: 6-7, 292. Three-year player didn't start until 2014. "He plays like a man," said one scout. "Can be a five-technique. Damn right he has pass rush. Really a good player." Finished with 10 sacks. "A little bit like Datone Jones but much taller and bigger," said another scout. "Same kind of player. He has the athleticism but production has been minimal. When you're a really tall player you have to have either really good strength or play with really good technique and fundamentals. He doesn't have either yet. He plays hard. He's got the ability. It's just not totally there yet. He's going to be a rusher on the inside."

Mario Edwards*, DE, Florida State: 6-3, 279. Registered 7½ sacks in three seasons, including two as a starter. "Still kind of a project," one scout said. "Big athletic guy. Just didn't have much production or feel as a rusher. You hope he'd be a better rusher to take him in the first round but he's got size and is athletic." Father, Mario, played cornerback for the Cowboys after being drafted in the sixth round (2000). Also played some LB and FB. "Huge D-end but could even bounce inside and rush as a three-technique," another scout said. "Very, very strong upper body. Plays the run extremely well but also can rush the passer." Huge hands (10 7/8).

Shane Ray*, DE, Missouri: 6-3, 245. Declared a year early after being named Southeastern Conference defensive player of the year. "Tough, fast," one scout said. "He's better than the guy (Kony Ealy) from there last year. Little straight-line." Posted a school-record 14½ sacks in 2014 to go with 22½ tackles for loss. "I don't like him," said another scout. "People see who he is, they're going to fall off him quick. The body structure. No way in hell he can be an outside backer. Competitive, smart and reliable. Wins with effort, urgency and great first step. He has a degree of stiffness. He's got to win with quickness because of his lack of size and strength." Tiny hands (9).

Danny Shelton, NT, Washington: 6-1, 339. Three-year starter with 208 tackles (24 for loss) and 11½ sacks, including 9 as a senior. "True nose tackle," one scout said. "Big body. Big noses go (early)." Another scout said Shelton moved as well as Green Bay's B.J. Raji. Patterns his game after Baltimore's Haloti Ngata. Dominated at the Senior Bowl.

Eddie Goldman*, DT, Florida State: 6-4, 336. Third-year junior. "He's a powerful, explosive guy," one scout said. "Strong at the point." Two-year starter with 62 tackles (12 for loss) and 6 sacks. "Three-technique," another scout said. "He can do it all. Plays hard."

Dante Fowler*, OLB, Florida: 6-3, 261. Third-year junior, two-year starter. "Played on a very average football team but stood out," one scout said. "You saw offenses (slide) his way. Double-teaming and chipping. Definitely a pass rusher first. He has the athleticism and skill to play outside linebacker." Voted team MVP in 2014 after registering 8½ of his 14½ career sacks. "Probably has to be an outside backer for a 3-4 team," another scout said. "Edge guy. He's got those first two steps."
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Default Re: Bob McGinn on 2015 NFL Draft

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THE NEXT LEVEL (37)

Devin Funchess*, WR-TE, Michigan: 6-4, 232. Enrolled as a WR, played 2012-'13 as a TE and went back to WR last year as a third-year junior. "He's a wide receiver," one scout said. "He's not physical enough as an inside blocker. He'll be like a hybrid player. He drops a lot of balls." Terrific high school basketball player in Michigan; declined invitation as a freshman to double as a basketball player. "Not crazy about him," said another scout. "He won't block. He's got good hands but he drops balls. He can't play tight end. He'll get drafted high, too high for me." Disappointing 40 of 4.70.

Jaelen Strong*, WR, Arizona State: 6-2, 217. Junior-college transfer caught 157 passes for 2,287 yards (14.6) and 17 TDs in two seasons for Sun Devils. "(Plays) like his last name," said one scout. "Average to above-average speed. He'll probably play early. His ceiling isn't high, but he's going to be a good, solid, starting wide receiver with good hands. Physical frame. Really good field awareness. Very good in the red zone. Just not a stretch-the-field vertical receiver. More of a short to intermediate type." Ran surprisingly fast (4.44).

Dorial Green-Beckham*, WR, Oklahoma: 6-5, 237. "He's the wild card of all of them," said one scout. "He's a first-round talent, no question. He may even be better than (Amari) Cooper. He's that talented. But is there a team that will take a chance on him there?" Kicked out of Missouri after drug-related issues, transferred to Oklahoma but wasn't eligible in 2014. Started 15 of 25 games at Mizzou, catching 87 passes for 1,278 yards (14.7) and 17 TDs. Ran 4.49.

Nelson Agholar*, WR, Southern California: 6-0, 198. Third-year junior coming off 2014 season in which he caught 104 passes for 1,313 yards (12.6) and 12 TDs. "Very similar to Marquise Lee," one scout said. "Slender build. Good speed, not special speed. Good hands. Probably will make his mark early as a returner. He can line up in all the spots inside and outside." Returned four punts for TDs. Ran 4.42.

Devin Smith, WR, Ohio State: 6-0½, 196. Consummate deep threat. "A vertical receiver," one scout said. "That's where he's at his best. Hands are average. Route running was average. But a really good stretch-the-field vertical type. Probably not as fast as (Miami's) Mike Wallace." Three-year starter with 121 receptions for 2,503 yards (20.7) and 30 TDs; his 33 catches in 2014 averaged an astounding 28.2 (12 TDs). Ran 4.42.

Sammie Coates*, WR, Auburn: 6-1, 212. Fourth-year junior. "Once he runs fast they're all going to drool over him," one scout said of his fellow personnel men. "I'm not on board. He's a large, explosive, stiff, inconsistent guy with big hands. I wouldn't touch him, but I think he goes late second (round)." Finished with 82 receptions for 1,757 yards (21.8) and 13 TDs. Labored on a bad knee in 2014. Ran 4.43.

Maxx Williams*, TE, Minnesota: 6-4, 249. Third-year sophomore with 61 catches for 986 yards (16.2) and 13 TDs. "He's one of those guys that jumps over people and stiff-arms," said one scout. "Real good hands. He blocks downfield and can get on linebackers. He'll (block) better in-line." His father, Brian, also played for the Gophers and generally started at center for the Giants from 1989-'99. "I would not put him in the category of an athlete like Jimmy Graham or someone like that," another scout said. "You're not talking about a dominating type player. Need at the position and lack of players there could move him up to the top of the second (round). If he's bottom of the first round it's an overreach." Ran 4.78.

La'el Collins, T-G, Louisiana State: 6-4 1/2, 305. Started at LG in 2012 and at LT the past two seasons. "I think he has to move to guard," one scout said. "Big and strong. His effort wanes at times." Voted team MVP in 2014. Impressive week at the Senior Bowl. "Very talented, athletic," another scout said. "Good size, good strength and a lot of production. Really effective at guard." Arms were just 33¼.

T.J. Clemmings, T, Pittsburgh: 6-4 1/2, 309. Spent three seasons at DE (six starts in 2012) before starting at RT in 2013-'14. "An athlete first," said one scout. "He has the athleticism to start. Just going to take a little bit of time. Still developing his technique, fundamentals and understanding the position." Long arms (35 1/8). Scored 15 on the Wonderlic intelligence test. Turned down offers to play basketball at Providence and Seton Hall.

Cameron Erving, T, Florida State: 6-5, 313. Fifth-year senior moved from D-line to O-line in spring 2012. "He's athletic," said one scout. "Not a very good technician. Still learning the position." Three-year starter at LT but forced to start the last five games at center in 2014. Arms were 34 1/8. "He's a lot like Collins," another scout said. "He could be a left tackle, center or guard. Very versatile second-round pick."

D.J. Humphries*, T, Florida: 6-5, 307. Third-year junior. "He's a smaller guy who has gotten bigger each year," one scout said. "He'll still need to continue adding weight and growth. He lacks anchor on bull rushes and isn't going to generate a lot of movement with his drive blocks." Missed half of the 2013 season with a knee injury and two games in '14 with an ankle injury. "Talented kid," another scout said. Arms were 33 5/8.

A.J. Cann, G, South Carolina: 6-3, 313. Started 51 games at LG. "He has size, length, mass, toughs and he's competitive," said one scout. "He'll need a little bit of work in pass pro, and the mental part will scare you a little bit." Two-time captain. Arms were just 32 5/8. "Second round probably," another scout said. "Good player. He's got enough strength and he can move, too."

Laken Tomlinson, G, Duke: 6-3 1/2, 323. Really helped himself during Senior Bowl week. "He's a big, square, flexible athlete," one scout said. "He's got good movement. He needs to work on his technique and balance." Four-year starter at guard. Arms were 33 5/8.

Donovan Smith*, T, Penn State: 6-6, 338. Fourth-year junior. "Big guy who is more athletic than his peers," one scout said. "He has to work through some natural laziness." Started for three years at LT. Arms were 34 3/8. "Looked good in the Senior Bowl," one scout said. "Now he's got to get through the interviews. He's kind of a different kid. Not bad. Just different."

Cedric Ogbuehi, T, Texas A&M: 6-5, 306. Started for 3½ years, including both tackles and guard. Followed Luke Joeckel and Jake Matthews at LT in 2014. Suffered a torn ACL in third quarter of a bowl game and had surgery about five weeks ago. "He did everything as well as those two (Joeckel, Matthews)," one scout said. Arms were 35 7/8. He still has hopes of being drafted in the first round and playing this season. "He is really talented but soft and doesn't play very strong," another scout said. "I've been in there three years in a row and have never seen him practice. Guy's always hurt."

Brett Hundley*, QB, UCLA: 6-3, 226. Three-year starter redshirted in 2011. "The physical tools are there," one scout said. "He's going to need time. He's going to have to go to a team that will need to have patience with him and just continue teaching him the game. A team at the top of the second (round) that needs a quarterback might throw him to the fire too early, and he's not ready for that." Operating a zone-read offense similar to the Eagles', his NFL passer rating was 103.7. He also rushed for 1,747 yards (3.6) and 30 TDs. Idolizes Donovan McNabb. "I don't think he can mentally process," another scout said. "His arm and talent are OK. He's got a lot of flaws in his game." Ran 4.63.

T.J. Yeldon*, RB, Alabama: 6-1, 226. Shared carries with Eddie Lacy in 2012 before taking on the featured role the past two years. "He's different than Lacy," one scout said. "Lacy's more power. This guy can run with power, but he also has some moves. I'd take Lacy over him. Only question I have on Yeldon, is he beat to hell and back? All those guys down there (Alabama) get beat up." Carried 576 times for 3,322 yards (5.8) and 37 TDs, and caught 46 passes. "He'll go right around 30, 35," said another scout. "He and Gordon will fight for first back. He probably has the best feet of any back in the draft." Ran just 4.61.

Todd Gurley*, RB, Georgia: 6-1, 222. Suffered a torn ACL Nov. 15 but expressed confidence he would play in 2015. "That guy is good," said one scout. "He's a man among boys. If you're a deep team why wouldn't you take a bona fide Pro Bowl back and just shelve him?" Finished with 510 carries for 3,306 yards (6.5) and 36 TDs, and also caught 65 passes. Won't be 21 until August. "You're talking about a running back that you will never see run (the 40)," said another scout. "You know he's fast. You see it on film. The second combine (medical) recheck will be very important for him. He's a top-10 talent, but he could easily go outside the first round because there's a lot of backs in this draft."

Jay Ajayi*, RB, Boise State: 6-0, 221. Fourth-year junior. "Big back with very good speed," one scout said. "Really came on at the end of the year. He's just a guy that runs hard. Very physical." Carried 678 times for 3,796 yards (5.6) and 55 TDs. Ran 4.57.

Jeremy Langford, RB, Michigan State: 6-0, 208. Redshirted, then carried just nine times in 2011-'12 behind Le'Veon Bell. "He's not Le'Veon Bell," said one scout. "He's a step below. But he can run, catch and do everything well. I'd take him over (Indiana's) Tevin Coleman because he makes NFL runs. He has to pick and show vision and contact balance. When you spread out all over the damn field and they pitch you the ball and you pick a running lane (as Coleman did), that's a little different (easier)." Carried 568 times in 2013-'14, gaining 2,944 yards and 40 TDs. Led all RBs with 40 time of 4.42.

Alvin "Bud" Dupree, DE-OLB, Kentucky: 6-3½, 269. Started 36 of 45 games at both end and linebacker. "Very good athlete," one scout said. "Has played both up and down. As he's gotten better the defense has gotten better. Pass rusher. Great kid. He can be a physical player." Finished with 21½ sacks. "Athletic, but he's got no instincts," another scout said. "I just don't think he's real smart." Scored 13 on the Wonderlic. Extremely soft-spoken.
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Default Re: Bob McGinn on 2015 NFL Draft

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Owamagbe Odighizuwa, DE, UCLA: 6-3, 267. Fifth-year senior who sat out all 2013 after undergoing hip surgery. "Kid's got instincts and agility and strong hands," one scout said. "Question is, how much bigger is he going to get? He wins with power." His father, Peter, is serving three life sentences for a triple homicide shooting at Appalachian School of Law (Va.) in 2002. "Really athletic," another scout said. "Tough. Just doesn't have great instincts." Huge hands (11).

Danielle Hunter*, DE-OLB, Louisiana State: 6-5, 252. Third-year junior. "LSU has these type players every couple years," said one scout. "Barkevious Mingo was one. Really tall and long. Looks like a football player. He will run like a deer. Hasn't had consistency of production yet. He was a 1½-sack guy this year, but that's kind of been the norm. Mingo came out (early) and had 6 sacks and went top 10 (in 2013). Hunter is that type of player." Two-year starter with 4½ sacks.

Malcom Brown*, DT, Texas: 6-2, 319. Started two of three seasons. "Typical Texas guy," said one scout. "Has talent but little bit of an underachiever. He has more ability than he's showing. He can be a three-technique or a shade. Has some upside." Last season, he became the first Longhorn DT since Tony Degrate in 1984 to lead the team in both sacks (6½) and tackles for loss (15).

Jordan Phillips*, DT, Oklahoma: 6-5, 329. Started four games in 2013 before suffering a back injury that required surgery. Came back to start all 13 in '14 before declaring early. "He has a bad back," said one scout. "He has quickness and he can run, but he plays so damn high and he cannot get off a block. It could be back-related. If that's not an issue, he has something that you can't coach, and that's physical talent. I think he's tough enough. He's just not a good player. He does not dominate. He's not effective. That bothers me. Character-wise, everything's positive about him." Finished with 58 tackles (nine for loss) and 3½ sacks.

Carl Davis, DT, Iowa: 6-4½, 320. Fifth-year senior and two-year starter. "He has some ability, but he's lazy," one scout said. "He was off the field (late in the season) on passing downs and didn't seem real upset about it. Nice kid." Played extremely well in the Senior Bowl. "He plays like he is, a nice guy," said another scout. "Never finishes things. He has talent but wasn't very consistent. His character is impeccable. He'll get drafted pretty high, but he scares the hell out of me." Massive hands (11).

Michael Bennett, DT, Ohio State: 6-2, 293. Two-year starter with 18 sacks and 31½ tackles for loss. "His true position is three-technique," one scout said. "Good football player." Both of his parents graduated from West Point. "I thought he disappeared too often in games," another scout said. "Enough athletic ability. Not sure if he's quick enough for a smaller guy to win on a consistent basis. Doesn't always finish plays. He's not as talented as Jurrell Casey. Not even close to Aaron Donald."

Shaq Thompson*, OLB, Washington: 6-0, 228. Winner of the Paul Hornung Award as the nation's most versatile player. "Really good athlete," one scout said. "Not great instincts. He's the best athlete on that team. He could be the best running back. He's a rusher. He can play on and off the ball." Third-year junior scored six TDs in 2014, including three on fumble returns and two as a running back.

Eli Harold*, OLB-DE, Virginia: 6-3, 247. Third-year junior, two-year starter. "Good athlete, not elite," one scout said. "Just a solid, productive football player. He'll get six, seven, eight sacks a year. Probably never reach double digits, but you'll like him because he plays the run well and rushes the passer well." Finished with 17½ sacks.

Benardrick McKinney*, ILB, Mississippi State: 6-4, 246. Fourth-year junior, three-year starter. "He's like a Dont'a Hightower," one scout said. "Big, physical guy. I think he can (play every down)." Led Bulldogs in tackles past two seasons. "We don't know if he can run yet," another scout said. "I don't know if he's a dinosaur or he's a new-breed backer." Tiny hands (9).

Denzel Perryman, ILB, Miami: 5-11, 236. Started 37 games over four seasons. "Explosive tackler," one scout said. "Physical. Tough. He's second or third round. It will be interesting to see how he runs." Generally played middle linebacker but started all 13 games outside in 2013. "We've got people who love him," another scout said. "I think he's gotten too big. I talked to those guys (coaches) there and he doesn't want to lose the weight. Doesn't look like he can run as well as he should. Got some stiffness to him."

Paul Dawson, ILB-OLB, Texas Christian: 6-0, 235. Two-year starter. Ideally suited for weak side in a 4-3 but also might be able to play inside in a 3-4. "Very instinctive football player," one scout said. "Little bit of a freelancer. Kind of does his own thing, which coaches don't love. But he's got a lot of ability." Regarded as a character risk by some teams. "He's late for meetings, all that kind of stuff," another scout said. "He's just never done the right things."

Trae Waynes*, CB, Michigan State: 6-0, 186. Melvin Gordon's teammate at Kenosha Bradford. "He's probably the best (corner) of the bunch," one scout said. "He can press and play off. He can run. He's got length. Very even-keeled. Good teammate. He's not going to talk trash. He does a lot of good things, but he doesn't have rare athletic traits. He could walk in and be a starter." Fourth-year junior played 36 games in three seasons and intercepted six passes. "Those guys there have really been well-coached," another scout said. "Kind of a weird built kid. He's long, but he's kind of thin. He can be a press guy but not very good playing off. At the right place he'll have a chance to be a player."

Kevin Johnson, CB, Wake Forest: 6-0, 188. Redshirted in 2010 before starting 41 games in four seasons. "He could be gone by 30 based on need," one scout said. "Somebody's got to go and if it's going to be anybody it's probably going to be him because he's the most steady. I'd really have a hard time taking any corner in the first round. Very good technique, awareness, instinct, ball skills. All that good stuff. But he's not a burner and he's thin. Just a good, solid, all-around corner." Intercepted seven passes.

Alex Carter*, CB, Stanford: 6-0, 196. Started for 2½ years and had two interceptions. "Tall, good-sized corner," said one scout. "Solid speed, not special. Still developing his game. Fundamentally raw. I don't know if he can step right in and start early in his career. He's got man-to-man skill." Tom, his father, was a Notre Dame cornerback drafted in the first round by Washington in 1993.

Jalen Collins*, CB, Louisiana State: 6-1, 203. Started in 2014 after serving as a nickel back for two seasons. "He won't run well enough to be a first-rounder," one scout said. "Real good size. Little raw. His ceiling is as a No. 2 type corner."

Landon Collins*, S, Alabama: 6-0, 228. Played alongside Green Bay's Ha Ha Clinton-Dix in 2013 before leading the Crimson Tide in tackles (103) as a junior. "Where did the Packers get Clinton-Dix (21)?" one scout asked. "He's the same guy. Same grade. He's OK. I'm not going to say sure-fire great. I think he's smart and physical. He's the best safety." Added another scout: "I thought he was better than the guy in Green Bay. Little better movement."
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Default Re: Bob McGinn on 2015 NFL Draft

Andrus Peat*, T, Stanford: 6-7, 313. Third-year junior rotated at LT in 2012 before starting the past two years. "He's the most talented (O-lineman)," one scout said. "His dad was really talented but fat. The dad was probably 6-2." Todd Peat was a squatty guard for the Cardinals and Raiders from 1987-'93. "Ready-made NFL player," another scout said. "Left tackle or right tackle. Little bit like Jake Matthews. He won't be an overly dominating type athlete but just sound. Bigger than Jake. A very good, solid player, no question about it." Arms were 34 3/8, hands were 10 5/8.


Scout must be a friend of his daddy's. Will be an Average RT in the NFL IMO.
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Default Re: Bob McGinn on 2015 NFL Draft

Quote:
The Journal Sentinel's Bob McGinn assesses the top wide receivers and tight ends in the draft next week. Included is each player's height, weight, 40-yard dash and projected round.

WIDE RECEIVERS

1. AMARI COOPER, Alabama (6-1, 210, 4.35, 1): Third-year junior. "Reggie Wayne has always been under the radar as being a great receiver," one scout said. "That's Cooper. Makes plays. Get open. Difficult to bring down. Not because he's strong, but because he has a knack and can make a subtle move." Three-year starter with 228 catches for 3,463 yards (15.2-yard average) and 31 touchdowns. "I think he's better than Torry Holt, Roddy White," another scout said. "Very smooth and very polished." Not as flamboyant as Sammy Watkins from a year ago but more consistent. "He plays tough," a third scout said. "He's just not I guess the modern prototype now because of the size." Played at Miami Northwestern High with Teddy Bridgewater. Scored 21 on the 50-question Wonderlic intelligence test. Finished third in the Heisman Trophy voting after breaking the Southeastern Conference record for single-season receptions with 124 in 2014.

2. KEVIN WHITE, West Virginia (6-2½, 214, 4.30, 1): "There's not one thing wrong with Kevin White," said one scout. After two junior-college seasons, he had a tame 35-reception campaign in 2013 before exploding in '14 with 109 for 1,447 (13.3) and 10 TDs. "Last year they couldn't cover Mike Evans," another scout said. "This guy falls into that category. Fun player to watch. I'd love to know how many penalties he drew." Loves talking trash, physical and strong (tied for the WR lead in the bench press with 23 reps). Compared by various scouts to Andre Johnson, Larry Fitzgerald and Julio Jones. Stunned scouts with a blazing 40 at the combine. "He wasn't really on the map at the beginning of the year," a third scout said. "He's skyrocketed. He's not in the league of a Calvin Johnson or a Larry Fitzgerald. Not as nifty as Amari Cooper. But he's going to be a good starter." From Plainfield, N.J.

3. DeVANTE PARKER, Louisville (6-2½, 211, 4.42, 1): Recruited by Kentucky to play basketball out of Louisville Ballard High. "He probably could have played there," said one scout. "Smooth, athletic, adjusts on the deep ball well. But he got nicked up." Suffered a broken foot in late August and missed seven games. "He's been hurt a lot and hasn't had as much production as these other guys," another scout said. "He's big and really good after the catch. He's a very quiet type of kid so I think people have some concern for his mental, which is a big thing for wideouts." Wonderlic of 15. Finished with 156 catches for 2,775 (17.8) and 33 TDs. "A little soft," said a third scout. Added a fourth: "Thing that worries me, first play of the Florida State game he catches an up and he turned to look to see where the DBs are and gets caught. Well, the fast guys don't look. They just catch the ball and run."

4. NELSON AGHOLOR, Southern California (6-0, 196, 4.40, 1-2): Third-year junior. "He's kind of like Jeremy Maclin," one scout said. "He can play both (outside and slot). His best things are versatility and route running. You wish he was bigger, but besides that he's pretty solid." Nigerian; moved to the U.S at 5. "Very similar to Marquise Lee," a second scout said. "Slender build. Good speed, not special speed." Started for two years, finished with 178 catches for 2,572 (14.4) and 20 TDs. "(Randall) Cobb might be a little bit stronger, but it's the same quickness," a third scout said. "He makes people miss. Just skinny." Said a fourth scout: "He's OK. Gets pushed around."

5. BRESHAD PERRIMAN, Central Florida (6-2, 212, 4.27, 1-2): His father, Brett, caught 525 passes in a 10-year career spent mostly with Detroit. He was 5-9, 180. "Totally different from his dad," one scout said. "His dad was really quick. This guy is bigger. You don't see the speed he ran. This guy doesn't run routes. He has a rough time against press because he's not quick and he's tight. I see a straight-line speed guy." Third-year junior with 115 catches for 2,243 (19.5) and 16 TDs. "He plays fast, he plays big and I like him," a third scout said. "It's a little surprising given the dad that he's not a better route runner." Two-year starter from Lithonia, Ga. "Hands were very iffy this year," said a fourth scout. "He has a big up side but obviously a lower floor because he has inconsistencies catching. He really just hasn't put it all together yet."

6. JAELEN STRONG, Arizona State (6-2½, 218, 4.43, 1-2): Fourth-year junior spent two years in junior college before arriving in Tempe. "Reminds me of Larry Fitzgerald except he's faster," said one scout. "People can't cover him on the back shoulders and fades because he has amazing talent to leap like Fitzgerald had. He's excellent ball tracking, hands, jumping, in traffic. Became a star playing with a very average quarterback. I thought he'd run 4.55. It shocked me." Scored the highest on the Wonderlic (22) of the top 12 WRs. "A big, physical, jump-ball type receiver," another scout said. "He can outsize defensive backs and is good with the ball in his hand. Limited as a route runner." Played late in the season with a wrist injury that has led one team to reject him medically. Finished with 157 catches for 2,287 (14.6) and 17 TDs. "If you watch him play, he looks more like a possession guy," a third scout said. "I don't see the great fanfare in his play. He's adequate. I don't think he's sensational." From Philadelphia.

7. DORIAL GREEN-BECKHAM, Oklahoma (6-5, 236, 4.46, 1-2): Third-year junior kicked out of Missouri after two seasons before spending a practice-only year under Sooners coach Bob Stoops. "He's not the freak athlete like Calvin Johnson," one scout said. "He's longer than Demaryius Thomas. Huge threat in the red zone. Oklahoma had to hold him out of some drills because he was just dominating practices. He was (abusing) their starters, It wasn't even close." Caught 28 passes as a pure freshman in 2012, then ran No. 2 behind NFL free agent L'Damian Washington in '13. Finished with 87 receptions for 1,278 (14.7) and 17 TDs. "He's so big and so fast," another scout said. "There's just a lot of unknowns with him. He's a train wreck." Small hands (9). Poorest vertical jump (33½) of top 25 WRs. Multiple character issues vex teams. "He's as talented as anybody in the group but I wouldn't draft him," a third scout said. "The best predictor of future behavior is past behavior. He could become Josh Gordon. He's going to be a hit immediately for whoever drafts him and then he's going to be a problem." Wonderlic of 20.

8. DEVIN FUNCHESS, Michigan (6-4, 232, 4.54, 1-2):Compared by scouts to Marques Colston and Jared Cook. Third-year junior spent first two seasons at TE before shifting to WR last year. "He certainly can do the tight end stuff but he doesn't want to block," one scout said. "Antonio Gates is like his (relative) and they had a big discussion about where you get paid more. He doesn't play as big as he should all the time and he's not great about catching balls in the middle." Finished with 126 receptions for 1,715 (13.6) and 15 TDs working with erratic QB Devin Gardner. "(Gardner) was awful," said another scout. "After you got rung up over the middle every damn game everybody would be a little timid. I don't think there's anything wrong with Funchess." Played three games near midseason with a broken thumb. "Michigan hasn't had any success with receivers," a third scout said. "He's got inconsistent hands but he can make catches. I wouldn't take him first (round) but I'd take him early two." Out of Farmington Hills, Mich.

9. PHILLIP DORSETT, Miami (5-9½, 184, 4.28, 1-2):Three-year starter. "He can play outside because he'll be the fastest guy in the NFL," one scout said. "There's nobody that fast. Better version of John Brown, who was a hell of a rookie for the Cardinals." He's just a bullet." Tremendous deep speed. "He may be a gadget guy but, boy, he gets on the DB's toes quickly," another scout said. "I mean, he is explosive." Finished with 108 catches for 1,860 (17.2) and 15 TDs. "Can play inside or outside," a third scout said. "He might not be a team's No. 1 ever but he's going to scare people because he can go." From Fort Lauderdale, Fla.

10. DEVIN SMITH, Ohio State (6-0½, 199, 4.39, 2): Three-year starter. "A really good stretch-the-field vertical type," one scout said. "Probably not as fast as Mike Wallace. Hands are average, route-running average." Averaged an astounding 28.2 on 33 catches (12 TDs) for national champions in 2014 but didn't play a whole lot. "You can throw him in there and he'll run by people," another scout said. "But he's not going to be an every-down No. 1 or No. 2 type receiver. He'll be a great gunner but a back-end (of the roster) receiver." Finished with 121 catches for 2,503 (20.7) and 30 TDs. "He needs some work, but if nothing else he'll come in and take the top off the coverage and be great on (special) teams," a third scout said. "He'll open up the field for you." Hails from Massillon, Ohio.

11. TYLER LOCKETT, Kansas State (5-10, 181, 4.35, 2): Compared by one scout to Dexter McCluster. "Love him," one scout said. "Extremely quick. Great bloodlines. He's not small by any means. Blazing speed, quick, good route runner. Strong hands. Abysmal quarterback play. The fact he got the production he did when opponents knew he was their primary threat was impressive to me." Both his father, Kevin, and uncle, Aaron, were top WRs at K-State. Started for 3½ years, finishing with 249 catches for 3,710 (14.9) and 29 TDs. "If he was 6-feet he might be the best receiver," another scout said. "It was a nothing team but this guy just made play after play after play." From Tulsa, Okla.

12. SAMMIE COATES, Auburn (6-1½, 212, 4.40, 2-3): Fourth-year junior with degree in public administration. "He is a great kid," one scout said. "He has worked so hard. He is such a positive personality that I think he might overcome the inconsistent catching. It'll kill him to drop a ball. He'll work at it." Strong (23 reps on the bench), athletic (41-inch vertical jump) and very fast. Wonderlic of 14. "He's stiff, like the guy the Raiders drafted from Maryland (Darrius Heyward-Bey)," said another scout. "Couldn't get out of breaks. Coates falls in that category." Burned Alabama for 206 yards in five receptions. Finished with 82 catches for 1,757 (21.4) and 13 TDs. His problematic knees concern some teams. "A JC kid (D'Haquille Williams) came in this year and was their top receiver over him," a third scout said. "But he runs by people in the best conference." From Leroy, Ala.

13. RASHAD GREENE, Florida State (5-11½, 180, 4.49, 2-3): Led leading receivers with 24 on the Wonderlic. "Smart, smooth, exceptional route runner, very good hands," one scout said. "He's like Robert Brooks." Rewrote the Seminoles' record book, finishing with 270 catches for 3,830 (14.2) and 29 TDs. "One of our scouts said he'll get picked behind a bunch of receivers but he might wind up having a better career or numbers than a lot who are picked ahead of him because he's so steady," said another scout. From Albany, Ga. "There's nothing special about the kid," said a third scout. "He's a pretty good football player but he's 180 and you don't see any real speed or quickness."

14. JUSTIN HARDY, East Carolina (5-10, 192, 4.56, 3):Former walk-on brings a try-harder approach. "I'll tell you what," one scout said. "If you want a possession guy that can play in the slot, he's got the best hands of anybody in the draft. He's like that kid from LSU last year (Jarvis Landry). Not as big, though." Set the FBS record with 370 receptions, good for 4,451 (11.7) and 35 TDs. "Plays a lot bigger than he is," another scout said. "Strong, physical, has really big hands (10). Knows how to use every element of ability that he has. He had a giant bull's-eye on his back every time he played and he still made plays." From Vanceboro, N.C.

OTHERS: Stefon Diggs, Maryland; Chris Conley, Georgia; Ty Montgomery, Stanford; Antwan Goodley, Baylor; Jamison Crowder, Duke; Tre McBride, William & Mary; Dres Anderson, Utah; Vince Mayle, Washington State; Darren Waller, Georgia Tech; DeAndre Smelter, Georgia Tech; Mario Alford, West Virginia.
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Default Re: Bob McGinn on 2015 NFL Draft

Talented Dorial Green-Beckham comes with red flags
Quote:
Green Bay — Alabama's Amari Cooper is regarded not only as the finest wide receiver in the draft but perhaps its second best player.

Yet, there are general managers and personnel directors in the National Football League who claim Oklahoma's Dorial Green-Beckham has the talent to become the finest in another stacked class of wide receivers if he can overcome his complex behavioral issues.

A Journal Sentinel poll this month of 19 personnel executives found 10 that picked defensive tackle Lawrence Williams as the No. 1 player in the draft.

Cooper, however, finished second with four votes, ahead of quarterback Marcus Mariota (2½), linebacker Dante Fowler (one), running back Melvin Gordon (one) and running back Todd Gurley (one-half).

"Cooper is as complete a player in this draft as you've got," said one personnel man.

Cooper also led the Journal Sentinel poll in which 19 scouts were asked to name their top five wide receivers (a first-place vote was worth five points, second-place was worth four and so on).

Capturing 12 first-place votes, Cooper totaled 88 points to edge Kevin White, who had the other seven firsts and 82 points.

Following, in order, were DeVante Parker (47 points). Nelson Agholor (16), Breshad Perriman (15), Jaelen Strong (12), Green-Beckham (nine), Devin Funchess (six), Phillip Dorsett (four), Devin Smith (three), Tyler Lockett (two) and Sammie Coates (one).

What, you might ask, is all this about Green-Beckham given that he finished a lowly seventh in the voting?

"He has the outstanding athletic package," an AFC personnel man said. "He may even be better than Cooper. Extremely talented."

That's a minority viewpoint among scouts, to be sure, but the AFC man isn't alone.

"Hard to cover downfield," said an another AFC scout. "Almost impossible to cover with a little corner. Super talented. He's a No. 1 for a team if he can control his demons."

Green-Beckham didn't even play in 2014 after being thrown out of Missouri 12 months ago for what several teams said were multiple failed drug tests and a domestic violence issue.

A few days before being dismissed, Green-Beckham was the subject of an investigation by police in Columbia, Mo., after an 18-year-old Missouri student and her roommate said he pushed the first woman, a friend of his girlfriend, down at least four stairs after forcing open the door to their apartment at 2:30 a.m.

Later, the two women informed police they chose not to press charges, and the case was closed without an arrest because of reluctant witnesses fearing retaliation.

Shortly before Missouri severed its relationship, Green-Beckham said in a statement, "Don't blame my girlfriend or her friends for anything. I have been young and dumb. During my suspension I'm entering counseling."

Green-Beckham transferred to Oklahoma, where he practiced but was denied a waiver to play immediately.

"At Oklahoma they vouch for the kid," one scout said. "They loved the kid. His pro day was at Oklahoma (March 11), which kind of tells you what they thought of him. His receivers coach (Jay Norvell) was fired, and that was a big reason he decided to come out.

"At Missouri, everybody that I talked to loves the kid. From a football standpoint, they'd bring him back 100%. But from a university standpoint he had too many issues. The drugs, the weed. Then there was the altercation with a girlfriend. From the university standpoint, they had no choice but to dismiss him."

Teams have had months to labor over Green-Beckham's background and determine if he can survive in the NFL.

His mother Charmelle Green battled alcohol and drugs. Green-Beckham, who never knew his biological father, overcame a harrowing upbringing largely due to the love of his adoptive parents, Tracy and John Beckham.

Two NFL executives who have done extensive research into Green-Beckham agreed that his way of coping was through substance abuse.

"I think he's got some deep internal scars and he tries to mask that pain with drugs and alcohol," one of the scouts said.

Earlier this month, Green-Beckham and his girlfriend went to dinner with officials from a team they were visiting.

"You leave liking him," one executive said after eating with Green-Beckham. "From a personality standpoint, pretty good. There's some light behind the eyes. They're about to have a baby....Seems to be maybe maturing."

Green-Beckham, 6 feet 5 inches and 236 pounds, has rare size and excellent speed (4.46-second 40).

He has been and could be compared to Calvin Johnson (6-5, 239, 4.35), Mike Evans (6-4½, 231, 4.52), Kelvin Benjamin (6-5, 241, 4.65), Brandon Marshall (6-4½, 227, 4.52), Vincent Jackson (6-4½, 238, 4.49) and Plaxico Burress (6-5½, 225, 4.56).

According to one scout, however, Green-Beckham's tape from 2013 was "about as raw as you can get. I really tried on him. Not quick, doesn't run good routes, inconsistent hands."

Skepticism abounds. A Journal Sentinel poll asking the 19 scouts which of the top wideouts had the best chance to bust showed Green-Beckham with 7½ votes followed by Funchess (3½), Perriman (three), Coates (two) and White, Parker and Strong, all one.

"If somebody wants him in the second round, go ahead," said one scout. "I used to draft these kind of guys."

Three times in the last decade (2005, '09, '12) teams had little to pick at tight end. Once again, tight end is largely bereft of talent.

"It's a weak class," one executive said. "None of them are blockers. I don't have one guy that I really feel solid about."

Minnesota's Maxx Williams was the clear-cut leader of a Journal Sentinel poll asking 19 scouts to list their top four tight ends.

Williams, with 15 first-place votes and 70 points, was followed by Clive Walford (49, one first), Tyler Kroft (21), Funchess (18, three firsts), Jeff Heuerman (12), Randall Telfer (five), Blake Bell (four), Busta Anderson (three), A.J. Derby (two), Jesse James (two), Nick O'Leary (two), James O'Shaughnessy (one) and Wes Saxton (one).

Summarized one executive: "Great wide-receiver year. Bad tight ends."

***

UNSUNG HERO

Jamison Crowder, WR, Duke: Plays and practices 100 mph every time he takes the field. Tied the Atlantic Coast Conference record for receptions (283). Quicker than fast. Measures 5-8½, weighs 180, runs 4.44 and isn't special returning kicks. Top character.

SCOUTS' NIGHTMARE

Darren Waller, WR, Georgia Tech: Extremely tall (6-6), extremely fast (4.45) and extremely smart (Wonderlic of 34). Yet, he started just 22 games over four seasons, wasn't productive, didn't block well and often didn't seem motivated. The talent's undeniably there, but scouts aren't sure if he likes football.

PACKERS' PICK TO REMEMBER

Barry Smith, WR, Florida State: First-round draft choice (No. 21 overall) in 1973 and all-time bust. Slow possession receiver caught just 41 passes for 604 yards (14.7) and four TDs in three seasons for poor teams. Made nine starts in '74. Closed forgettable career with four receptions for winless Tampa Bay in '76.

QUOTE TO NOTE

Veteran NFL scout: "As much as teams throw the ball now, they can dismiss a drop. I've got to get over that. Back in the day, you drop a ball, it was the end of the world."
http://www.jsonline.com/sports/packe...301013621.html

************************************

Quote:
TIGHT ENDS

1. MAXX WILLIAMS, Minnesota (6-4, 249, 4.84, 1-2): Third-year sophomore saw opportunity amid a woeful collection of tight ends and forfeited his final two seasons. "The confidence and the cockiness comes out because his dad's been through the process as a first-round draft choice," one scout said. "I'm sure they looked at it and said, 'Look, Maxx, this is the year to come out. You're the best one. Take a chance.'" Two-year stats were 61 catches for 986 (16.2) and 13 TDs. "He's easily the No. 1 guy," a second scout said. "He doesn't look sleek but I guarantee he can catch it, and he'll give you enough as a blocker, which sometimes you don't get from those sleek guys." Father, Brian, was the Giants' starting center for a decade. "He's one of those guys that jumps over people and stiff-arms," another scout said. "Real good hands. This guy will block, too." Wonderlic of 29. Hails from Waconia, Minn. "He's not a first-rounder," a third scout said. "He doesn't block. He's got really nice hands. He's got average speed. He's 4.8."

2. CLIVE WALFORD, Miami (6-4, 250, 4.75, 2-3): Played just one year of high-school football in Belle Glade, Fla. "He can block," one scout said. "He can get open. He can beat a DB one-on-one." Labeled as "probably the most complete tight end in the draft" by another scout. Improved each year, finishing with 87 catches for 1,299 (14.9) and 12 TDs. "He's a bigger guy who can actually run and catch and block," a third scout said. "The big game for him to watch is Florida State. Big hands (10¼), long arms (34), degree of toughness."

3. TYLER KROFT, Rutgers (6-5½, 247, 4.74, 3-4):Fourth-year junior. "He's a frat boy when you meet him," said one scout. "He's a very well-spoken, polished, a tad naïve. Very smart (Wonderlic of 32). He catches the ball. Really soft hands. And he's a get-in-the-way blocker." Two-year starter with 70 receptions for 901 (12.9) and five TDs. "Just a guy," said another scout. "He ain't got nothing," said another scout. "There are no tight ends. There's just bodies." From Downington, Pa. "He's light...in the (expletive) but he'll fight you on the line of scrimmage," a third scout said. "He's not a field stretcher. Been a little immature."

4. JEFF HEUERMAN, Ohio State (6-5, 253, 4.81, 3-4): Two scouts said Heuerman was only marginally better than ex-Packer Jake Stoneburner, his TE predecessor in Columbus. Played most of 2014 on a bad foot. "You didn't get to see all he was," one scout said. "He's got some strength in his upper body and he ended up being pretty productive as a blocker. Not a great athlete running routes. But you watch him work out and he can catch and adjust on the ball." Finished with 52 catches for 792 (15.2) and seven TDs. "Maybe by a little bit he's better than Stoneburner," one scout said. "He blocks a little bit. He's got some receiving ability. He does it all OK." Played high-level junior hockey growing up in Naples, Fla.

5. RANDALL TELFER, Southern California (6-3½, 250, 4.75, 4-5): Started for 3½ years as an old-fashioned style TE. "He's the best blocker of any of them," one scout said. "I like him because it's hard to find tough, blocking guys." Still nursing a Lisfranc foot injury and scouts won't see him run a 40 before the draft. Finished with 65 catches for 648 (10.0) and 12 TDs. "Good player," another scout said. "He catches the ball. Adequate athlete." Out of Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.

6. BLAKE BELL, Oklahoma (6-6, 252, 4.79, 5): Started eight of the 31 games that he played at QB from 2011-'13, rushing for 24 TDs as the "Belldozer" and compiling an NFL passer rating of 86.5. Reluctantly accepted move to TE in '14 and started eight of 12 games, catching 16 passes for 214 (13.4) and four TDs. "By the time the season was over you could see he was a guy with up side blocking," said one scout. "His deficiencies (early) weren't from want-to. It was positioning and leverage and hand placement." Father, Mark, played six NFL seasons as a DE. His uncle, Mike, was a standout DE from 1979-'91. "He's got an up side," another scout said. "Really a big guy, and I think he'll grow into the position." From Wichita, Kan.

OTHERS: Busta Anderson, South Carolina; Nick O'Leary, Florida State; Jesse James, Penn State; A.J. Derby, Arkansas; Nick Boyle, Delaware; James O'Shaughnessy, Illinois State; Ben Koyack, Notre Dame; Wes Saxton, South Alabama; Gerald Christian, Louisville; Geoff Swaim, Texas.
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Default Re: Bob McGinn on 2015 NFL Draft

The latest news about Shane Ray seems to point to a increasing chance he's pupped at start the season so long with Gregoy he's gonnabe the second top tier edge-rusher being removed off Texans Board.
And I don't expect one top reivers to make it to #16 so I' expecting the Texans to wait to late round in deep WRs class.
All of this leads me toconclude that the Texans will nottake an edge-rusher or WR in the first round and it becomes more likely they go CB or DT or even OT in the first where they likely ill find the best value at #16.
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Default Re: Bob McGinn on 2015 NFL Draft

The Journal Sentinel's Bob McGinn assesses the top quarterbacks in next week's draft. Included is each player's height, weight, 40-yard dash time and projected round.
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1. MARCUS MARIOTA, Oregon (6-3 ½, 222, 4.45, 1): Captured 2014 Heisman Trophy with the second-largest margin of victory ever. "He has a strong arm," one scout said. "He throws on the move as well as anybody I've seen. Mechanics are good. He threw three interceptions this year. Only negative is he carries the ball loose and he has fumbled. He's got the athletic ability to be an all-time great." Posted a 36-5 record and 121.3 passer rating (128.4 in '14) on the NFL scale. "He's like a better Colin Kaepernick," another scout said. "This guy is smarter and farther along." Fourth-year junior was lightly recruited out of Honolulu. Tied Brett Hundley for best vertical jump (36 inches) among QBs and had the best 20-yard shuttle (6.87). His 40 time wasn't as good as Michael Vick's 4.33 in 2001 or Robert Griffin III's 4.36 in 2012, but it was easily the fastest at the position this year. "I would much rather have this guy than Winston," a third scout said. "At least you're going to get the best he has all the time." Also rushed for 2,237 yards (6.6-yard average) and 29 touchdowns. "Ben (Roethlisberger) took everything in shotgun at Miami (Ohio), too," a fourth scout said. "He doesn't have Ben's arm. I do like a lot of things he brings to the table. But that running thing in the NFL? The guy (Griffin III) who plays for the Redskins found out that doesn't work." Scored 33 on the 50-question Wonderlic intelligence test.

2. JAMEIS WINSTON, Florida State (6-4, 231, 4.96, 1):Third-year sophomore won the Heisman Trophy in 2013 for the national champion Seminoles. "He's an unbelievable competitor," said one scout. "The football stuff, he embraces that. He's not a great athlete, but he has great instincts, awareness and a knack in the pocket. He's not going to dominate you just off pure physical ability. He will beat you with his mind, his patience. He sees things at a rate that a lot of good quarterbacks in the league take four, five years to see." Engineered numerous fourth-quarter come-from-behind victories in posting a 26-1 record and passer rating of 107.9. Better in 2013 (125.8) than in '14 (93.2), when his interception count swelled from 10 to 18. "I've seen too many interceptions," another scout said. "He's your drop-back guy, but he's got that long release. It kind of reminds me of the guy who used to play for Marshall (Byron Leftwich)." Played right field for FSU in 2013 and served as the closer in '14, using a mid-90s fastball to post a 1.94 earned run average in 60 career innings. "Jameis has gotten too big," said a third scout. "In high school (Bessemer, Ala.) he was a quick-twitch athlete. Now he's kind of sluggish." Posted dismal workout numbers at the combine. "I had no idea he'd run that poorly," a fourth scout said. "Quarterbacks without leg explosiveness have a terrible history. I don't like his off-field and I don't like the way he conducts himself on the field sometimes." Wonderlic of 27.

3. BRYCE PETTY, Baylor (6-3, 229, 4.83, 2): Battling to surpass Robert Griffin as coach Art Briles' best NFL QB. "He plays in a kid's offense, like a Thanksgiving Day game offense," one scout said. "He's going to have to be retooled. He's got size, feet, quickness of release, a strong arm. How long will it take to reshape him?" Never called a play for the Bears in Briles' high-octane, simplistic, shotgun attack. "I remember Art saying he's a better passer than Griffin and a similar athlete but not as fast," a second scout said. "If you're an athlete, don't you think you can get under center? Problem is, everybody wants instant success today." Two-year starter from Midlothian, Texas. Played with a bad back most of 2014. Passer rating was 114.3. "He's Christian Ponder-like with a better arm," a third scout said. "Somebody's trying to create something there. I'm not going to rule out that he won't start some games. But then people will realize he has some deficiencies." Wonderlic of 31. Said a fourth scout: "He's accurate deep — at times. In a quarterback-friendly system he's not very accurate (62.7%)."

4. BRETT HUNDLEY, UCLA (6-3, 227, 4.63, 2): Fourth-year junior with 40 starts. "He has the physical tools," one scout said. "Got a strong arm. Yes, he'll be a starter at some point. It's not a refined talent. Probably not unlike a Blake Bortles. He can be developed." Biggest knock is accuracy. "He's a running back playing quarterback, OK?" another scout said. Surpassed 100 passer rating all three seasons for resurgent Bruins, finishing at 103.7. Added 1,747 rushing yards and 30 TDs. According to one scout, his pro-day workout was the best of the leading QBs. "I wonder about how coachable this guy is," another scout said. "There's a lot of ability there." Wonderlic of 26. From Chandler, Ariz.

5. GARRETT GRAYSON, Colorado State (6-2 ½, 214, 4.75, 3-4): Started 35 games during an injury-riddled four-year career. "Good processor of the game," one scout said. "Got a pretty quick mind. Average physical characteristics. At best he becomes a guy like Jon Kitna or (Ryan) Fitzpatrick. That's not a negative. I see him better than Matt Flynn." Broke his collarbone three times. Passer rating of 97.1. "Pocket guy," another scout said. "Little better athlete than you think. He can at least escape the rush and get the ball off under duress." Wonderlic of 20. From Vancouver, Wash. "He's average, at best," said a third scout. "Career backup probably."

6. SEAN MANNION, Oregon State (6-5 ½, 226, 5.10, 4-5): Started 43 of 47 games, rewriting the Beavers' record book in a prostyle offense. His 13,600 passing yards rank eighth in Division I annals. "He spins a really good deep ball," one scout said. "He's very accurate and incredibly smart (Wonderlic of 40). People will knock him because of his 40 time, but he's got good enough feet to move around and slide in the pocket. I just like his presence." Coach's son from Pleasanton, Calif. Beavers were just 5-7 in 2014. Passer rating is 89.5. "Long, slow delivery," another scout said. "He reminds me of Derek Anderson, who came out of Oregon State 10 years ago. He's everybody's backup. This kid is so smart, he's playing to every bit of his ability."

7. CODY FAJARDO, Nevada (6-1 ½, 223, 4.58, 6-7): Four-year starter with passer rating of 91.3. Rushed for a whopping 3,482 yards (5.5) and 44 TDs in a pistol offense. "He took over for Kaepernick," one scout said. "He's a better pure passer than Kaepernick but not as big or strong. Really a nice athlete. But he's short and hot and cold." Wonderlic of 31. "Not really an established or consistent passer," another scout said. "Somebody that you could develop because of the athletic traits." From Brea, Calif.

8. CONNOR HALLIDAY, Washington State (6-3, 196, 4.9, 7-FA):Started for 2½ seasons and had an 88.2 passer rating. "He's got a talented arm," one scout said. "Plays in a wide-open system. He's smart enough (Wonderlic of 22). He'll need a little bit of work on his footwork, but he's got enough to take a shot on." Suffered a broken ankle Nov. 1 and still can't work for scouts. "He finds the open guy well at times but then he throws into coverage too often," another scout said. "Nobody there was sorry to see him go. I can't find anybody there that liked this guy." Out of Spokane, Wash.

9. SHANE CARDEN, East Carolina (6-2, 218, 4.92, 7-FA): Three-year starter with a passer rating of 99.5. Same size as Brett Favre and bears facial resemblance. "He reminds me of Favre," one scout said. "He's got some swagger. Really good leadership ability. His physical skill is OK. Some quarterback coach is going to love him because of what's in his heart and between his ears (Wonderlic of 25)." From Houston. "I like his mind," said another scout. "Physically, I don't think he's going to have the arm."

10. ANTHONY BOONE, Duke (6-0, 218, 4.95, 7-FA): Made one start behind Sean Renfree in 2012 before becoming a two-year starter. "He's won a lot of games," one scout said. "He's short. Just an average passer. He's a camp quarterback that doesn't really have enough up side." Posted a passer rating of 79.9. Wonderlic of 20. From Weddington, N.C.

OTHERS: Brandon Bridge, South Alabama; Bryan Bennett, Southeastern Louisiana; Taylor Heinicke, Old Dominion; Jerry Lovelocke, Prairie View A&M; Blake Sims, Alabama.
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Default Re: Bob McGinn on 2015 NFL Draft

Jameis Winston seen as having same faults as '07 bust JaMarcus Russell
Quote:
Green Bay — The striking similarities between Jameis Winston and JaMarcus Russell must be frightening to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as they weigh making the Florida State quarterback the first pick of the NFL draft.

"With Jameis Winston I see JaMarcus Russell," a longtime executive in personnel said. "They do dumb things. Isn't it interesting?"

Or horrifying, if you're coach Lovie Smith or general manager Jason Licht in Tampa. They know Russell well as the poster child for all-time busts after the Raiders drafted him No. 1 in 2007.

Jimbo Fisher, the Seminoles' head coach during Winston's three-year career, was quarterbacks coach and offensive coordinator throughout Russell's four-year career at Louisiana State.

In 22 years of major-college coaching, Fisher's best pro quarterback probably has been former Packers career backup Matt Flynn.

Besides Russell, Fisher prepared Rohan Davey for New England (fourth round) in 2002, Christian Ponder for Minnesota (first round) in 2011 and E.J. Manuel for Buffalo (second round) in 2013. They're failures, too.

Aside from coaching parallels, Winston (6 foot 4, 231 pounds) and Russell (6-5½, 258) share the same type of big, soft bodies and, according to some scouts, the penchant for turning the ball over.

"Lack of focus by JaMarcus is what I see in Winston," the personnel man said. "They're physically talented, but during the course of a game they kind of lose their focus and just put the ball up for grabs.

"I see the body. I see the lack of focus. I see the same coach and system. Only Winston's not as good an athlete and his arm isn't as strong as JaMarcus'."

Russell was done with football after three seasons, a 7-18 record and a passer rating of 65.2.

"We're looking at another guy (Winston) that's a product of the system and has tremendous athletes around him," another personnel man said. "Oh, my goodness.

"Is this guy really going to be the first pick of the draft? You'd be drafting a quarterback that can't run, has off-field problems, has no power in his legs and makes bad decisions on the field.

"Somebody's going to make a horrible mistake."

Since the start of the common draft in 1967, there has been 18 years in which two or more quarterbacks were selected among the first seven picks. In 14 of those years, or 78% of the time, at least one was a bust, and twice two flopped.

All 37 of those quarterbacks entered the league with such high hopes. Sixteen (43.2%) went down as failures.

Winston, of course, isn't the only big-name quarterback. There's always the chance Marcus Mariota of Oregon might go to Tampa Bay. Either way, both should go off among the top seven choices.

The results of a Journal Sentinel survey of 19 NFL executives in personnel this month revealed Winston as much more bust-prone than Mariota.

Scouts were asked to predict what's ahead for the two players. Here were the five categories used to forecast what their careers might hold, and the subsequent responses for each.

All-time great: Mariota one vote, Winston none.

At least one Pro Bowl: Mariota eight, Winston six.

Average starter: Mariota eight, Winston five.

Disappointment: Mariota one, Winston four.

Bust: Mariota one, Winston four.

Of the aforementioned 37 quarterbacks, three already are in the Pro Football Hall of Fame and another, Peyton Manning, is headed there.

Nine won at least one Super Bowl. Three others at least led teams to the Super Bowl.

Mariota receives high marks for athleticism, big-play capability, poise and work ethic. Some scouts regard him as something of a project out of the Ducks' spread attack, but at least a few see potential for greatness.

"If somebody works with him for what he does, he'll be an all-time great," one personnel man said. "He can play in a pro-style (offense), but I don't know why you would want him to do that. What he does is proven to be great in this league."

Many other scouts pan the entire group, being even harder on the paucity of even late-round suspects than Winston and Mariota.

The 19 personnel men agreed to list their top five quarterbacks in order (a first-place was worth five points, a second four and so on).

Mariota nipped Winston in points, 85-84, but Winston had the edge in first-place votes, 10-9.

Following, in order, were Bryce Petty (45 points), Brett Hundley (39), Garrett Grayson (19 ½) and Sean Mannion (12 ½).

The fact 19 voters confined their selections to just six players was different, to say the least. It appeared none of the others even are worthy of being drafted.

"After the first two, you're just rolling the dice and hoping you get a backup or something," one scout said. "None of them are any good."

Complicating the study of Winston was his consistent pattern of misbehavior at Florida State that would be considered intolerable for an NFL team set to pay him millions as the new face of the franchise.

In 2012, Winston was accused of raping a student. Declaring himself innocent, he didn't face criminal charges.

He also was cited for shoplifting $32 worth of crab legs from a supermarket in Tallahassee, Fla., was involved in BB gun incidents and was suspended one game for standing on a table in a university dining hall and screaming a lewd phrase.

At pro day March 31 in Tallahassee, Winston introduced the 17 teammates that would be auditioning with him before dozens of scouts.

"People were saying, 'Oh, he's a leader,'" said one personnel director. "But it was more of a, 'Hey-look-at-me-kind-of-thing,' as opposed to something good for his teammates.

"I just don't like his whole makeup, his whole salesman act. He's all about himself."

Another scout brought it back to Russell, saying, "He's got that same smile that JaMarcus had. They light the room up. That's what Jameis seems to be doing."

Unlike most top quarterbacks in recent years, Winston helped himself a month earlier by participating in throwing drills. The same day, he hurt himself with a slow 40-yard dash (4.96 seconds) and both a vertical jump (28 ½ inches) and broad jump (8-7) that ranked second worst among quarterbacks.

On the field, however, Winston lost just one of 27 starts, becoming the youngest winner of the Heisman Trophy in 2013 and producing a string of dramatic comeback victories with what some scouts view as remarkable competitiveness.

"He doesn't have all-time great talent, but he's just clutch," a personnel man said. "He's pro ready. It's clear-cut to me Winston's the best quarterback in this draft, talent-wise."

Now Lovie Smith and Co. must make a decision that, if it's wrong, probably will get them all fired.

•••

UNSUNG HERO

Taylor Heinicke, Old Dominion: Four-year starter, three-year captain and record-setting producer. Helped lead Monarchs into Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) and Conference USA last season. Game manager with a dink-and-dunk arm. Impressive athlete.

SCOUTS' NIGHTMARE

Brandon Bridge, South Alabama: Started at Alcorn State in 2010, lost his job and ended up spending 2013-'14 at South Alabama. Throws lasers but has almost no touch. Wild, athletic prospect needs a ton of refinement. Does any team have that much time?

PACKERS' PICK TO REMEMBER

Joe Francis, Oregon State: Drafted in the fifth round in 1958. Nickname was "Pineapple Joe" because of his Hawaiian ancestry. Served as No. 3 behind Babe Parilli and Bart Starr as a rookie, and stuck as No. 3 behind Starr and Lamar McHan under new coach Vince Lombardi in 1959. Two-year career statistics included 20 completions in 49 attempts for 266 yards, two touchdowns and three interceptions.

QUOTE TO NOTE

NFL personnel executive: "You've got to take quarterbacks. Seattle's the best example of keep trying. They traded for guys, they brought in guys. Then they finally hit one (Russell Wilson) in the third round and now they're all kingmakers."
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Default Re: Bob McGinn on 2015 NFL Draft

Quote:
NFL personnel executive: "You've got to take quarterbacks. Seattle's the best example of keep trying. They traded for guys, they brought in guys. Then they finally hit one (Russell Wilson) in the third round and now they're all kingmakers."
Great quote, and I agree totally. You have to keep trying to get a QB until you do.

I disagree with this.

Quote:
"After the first two, you're just rolling the dice and hoping you get a backup or something," one scout said. "None of them are any good."
One of these guys will become a good NFL QB. I can't tell you who. But there will be one that finds the right coach that can build on his talent.
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Default Re: Bob McGinn on 2015 NFL Draft

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Originally Posted by Lucky View Post

One of these guys will become a good NFL QB. I can't tell you who. But there will be one that finds the right coach that can build on his talent.
The key is having an owner and a fanbase willing to put up with a few aw chit's! in order to eventually get that attaboy. Hopefully it's no more than a couple, three years to get that guy

And don't be shy to gamble
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Default Re: Bob McGinn on 2015 NFL Draft

Rating the NFL draft prospects: Offensive linemen
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TACKLES

1. ANDRUS PEAT, Stanford (6-7, 315, 5.21, 1): Third-year junior. "He's what I call a beautiful athlete," one scout said. "So smooth. Really impressive physically. I compared him to Tyron Smith. Great pass protector. Just not that powerful at this age." Started 27 games at LT the past two seasons after rotating as a freshman in 2012. "He's got damn good feet but... the last bowl game against Maryland he looked like (expletive)," another scout said. "He's the No. 1 guy but he's never been pushed. He doesn't have any core strength. He doesn't take hard coaching." His father, Todd, was a squatty guard in the NFL for six years. Excellent prep basketball player in Chandler, Ariz. "I saw him get thrown around like a rag doll," a third scout said. "I respect what people think about the guy, but every defensive player I saw against Stanford kicked the (expletive) out of the guy. If you're asking me who was the most overrated guy I saw, it was that guy." Scored 27 on the 50-question Wonderlic intelligence test.

2. ERECK FLOWERS, Miami (6-6½, 326, 5.34, 1): Third-year junior who prepped in Miami. "Big, rugged, physical right tackle," said one scout. "Starts right away." Made four starts at RT in 2012 and 24 at LT in 2013-'14. "Violent, physical player," another scout said. "Fundamentally, he's got to clean some things up. He ducks his head. He tries to win with all upper body. He's got to learn to play with more patience." Led O-linemen in bench-press reps with 37. "Strictly a right tackle or guard," a third scout said. "He can't play left tackle because he isn't quick. He is powerful and he does have an anchor. He's stiff, so he has problems with adjust and recovery. He carries his hands low. He needs a lot of work with his hands. Big disappointment of the (top) group."

3. D.J. HUMPHRIES, Florida (6-5, 307, 5.08, 1): Third-year junior from Union, N.C. "Probably the best athlete of the O-line group," one scout said. "He's got every tool you look for in a left tackle. He just has to grow into his body. He came in at 255 and he's 300 now. Great kid. Leader of that O-line the last two years. He does play physical. It's just some of the bigger, more stout guys are harder for him to move." Started 19 games at LT before declaring. "Smart, good family, great kid," said another scout. "Needs more bulk but he has the frame to be a 320 guy without any problems." Other teams saw his Wonderlic of 12, lowest among leading tackles, and double-backed on his ability to learn. "He's late off the ball all the time," said a third scout. "You worry about him a little bit mentally."

4. CEDRIC OGBUEHI, Texas A&M (6-5½, 304, 4.95. 1-2): Part of coach Mike Sherman's star-studded signing class of 2010 that included LT Luke Joeckel and LT Jake Matthews. "He's got great feet," one scout said. "He's better than Luke Joeckel coming out. He's soft, but he'll probably go late first (round)." Started at RG in 2012, RT in '13 and LT in '14 before suffering a torn ACL in the Liberty Bowl. "He's going to take a year, but he's athletic as hell," a second scout said. "He didn't look good at left tackle this year but looked great at right tackle the year before and great at guard the year before that. He's not Joeckel or Matthews. He doesn't have the inner fiber those two have." Longest arms (35 7/8 inches) at the position and a Wonderlic of 23. "His ACL was pretty common but he's had back issues his whole career there," a third scout said. "Just during games you'd see him stretching, and in practice he was always doing some maintenance on the back. There's got to be some legitimate concerns about the back." From Allen, Texas.

5. DONOVAN SMITH, Penn State (6-5½, 333, 5.10, 1-2): "I thought he was fat and messy and played lazy," one scout said. "He has had issues like that. He's got talent. It's more where you think he is as far as want-to." Redshirted in 2011 but, after obtaining his degree, opted against returning for his senior season. "He's a giant human being that can kind of do whatever he wants," another scout said. "He's got good feet and bend for a big guy. Definitely can be a left tackle. He also can play with power. He was completely dominant at the Senior Bowl. But he's selfish, is up and down in games and has weight and conditioning issues." Three-year starter at LT. "He's not a feisty, Wisconsin-type guy," said a third scout. "The new staff there does not rave about him. Maybe he doesn't have that killer instinct, but he'll play." From Owings Mills, Md. "I hope he goes in the second round because we wouldn't take him until the mid-rounds," a fourth scout said. "He's got a little bit of a work ethic issue. He's a little bit stiff on the edge. Might be able to move inside and be a little better player."

6. T.J. CLEMMINGS, Pittsburgh (6-4½, 310, 5.14, 1-2): Spent first three seasons as a reserve DE before moving to offense in December 2012 and starting at RT the past two years. "He's really powerful," one scout said. "I've got no negatives at all. He's got excellent strength, power, aggressiveness, tenacity. Good pass-block technician." Long arms (35 1/8). So athletic that he had offers to play basketball at Seton Hall and Providence. Hurt himself with a poor week at the Senior Bowl. Failed one team's physical because of a bad knee. Some scouts wonder about his ability to adjust quickly and master assignments. "Has the fire in him that you like," said another scout. "Needs some technique work. Great kid. His learning is good enough. He'll pick it up and work at it. But it'd be a mistake to think he could play left tackle." From Teaneck, N.J., where he played only two years of football.

7. JAKE FISHER, Oregon (6-6, 307, 5.02, 2): Started at RT for two years before a teammate's injury precipitated his shift to LT in 2014. Several scouts say he lacks strength against bull rushes. "He does need to get thicker but some of that is technique and Oregon is not a big weightlifting program," one said. "He's really a hard guy to (evaluate). You watch the workout and he's really a good athlete, but he doesn't play to it. Kid plays hard. Obviously, he's got athletic ability." Out of Traverse City, Mich. "I compared him to Matt Stinchcomb," another scout said. "He had no base, either, but same type of athlete. He's a pusher, a position blocker. He's got no strength or power in his lower body."

8. COREY ROBINSON, South Carolina (6-6 ½, 321, 5.30, 2-3): Compared by one scout to Chargers LT King Dunlap. "He's a monster," said one scout. "Some people like big. Buffalo goes big. He's not a great foot athlete but I don't know if you have to be when you're a monster." Compared by another scout to Bills RT Seantrel Henderson. "He didn't play hard, and his technique's crappy," a fourth scout said. "You wonder about his intelligence but then he aced the Wonderlic (40). He's just all over the place." Moved from DT to LT, where he started three seasons. "I was there," said a fifth scout. "They're all glad he's leaving... said he's hard to coach, he's lazy. But that (expletive) has talent. Somebody will take him late three (third round)." From Havelock, N.C.

9. TY SAMBRAILO, Colorado State (6-6, 311, 5.36, 3-4): His 42 starts included 34 at LT, five at LG, two at RT and one at RG. "(David) Bakhtiari was soft like Sambrailo, but the one thing Bakhtiari had that I underestimated was a little bit of nastiness and competitiveness," one scout said. "I don't think Sambrailo has that. That's the constant learning process you go through in scouting. As long as you have that inner competitiveness, if you have athleticism to go with it, then you can be a finesse guy." Outstanding competitive skier growing up in Watsonville, Calif. Failed to impress at the Senior Bowl. "I was disappointed in him there," another scout said. "It'll take a year to get any real production from him. He lacks some functional anchor strength."

10. TYRUS THOMPSON, Oklahoma (6-5, 324, 5.37, 4): Finesse starter at LT for 2½ years. "He plays soft," one scout said. "He has all the talent in the world but he scares the hell out of you. He's a big good athlete. Just doesn't finish blocks." His arms measured long at the combine (34 7/8) but his workout was a dud. "He is not as athletic as I thought based on film," another scout said. "Third round at best. Good size. Good kid." Hails from Pasadena, Texas.

OTHERS: Rob Havenstein, Wisconsin; Chaz Green, Florida; Laurence Gibson, Virginia Tech; Andrew Donnal, Iowa; Trent Brown, Florida; Terry Poole, San Diego State; Jamon Brown, Louisville; Takoby Cofield, Duke; Sean Hickey, Syracuse; Austin Shepherd, Alabama.
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Default Re: Bob McGinn on 2015 NFL Draft

Quote:
GUARDS

1. BRANDON SCHERFF, Iowa (6-4½, 319, 5.04, 1): Compared by one scout to perennial Pro Bowl guard Steve Hutchinson. "He's better than anyone that's come out of there (Iowa), and they've had a bunch of good guys," one scout said. "I know everyone wants to make a guard out of him, but I'd have him disprove he can't play tackle. He didn't even play healthy this year. Had his knee scoped (torn cartilage) and the guy missed one practice. You watch the year before. I like (Bryan) Bulaga but I think this guy is better. I didn't think Bulaga could play left tackle but I think this guy can." Started 36 of 43 games (all but three at LT); his 2012 season was cut short by a serious ankle injury. "Alert, aggressive, finishes, athletic," another scout said. "Anchor is just OK. He'll be really good in a zone scheme because he has a really good feel for angles. When you line up with him you know what you're going to get." Multisport prep star from Denison, Iowa. "If you want a tackle he's not your guy," a third scout said. "Then you're going to go with Peat. Scherff's going to have edge limitations like Riley Reiff. He's not an ideal foot athlete at tackle and he doesn't always finish like you want." Wonderlic of 22.

2. LA'EL COLLINS, Louisiana State (6-4½, 312, 5.14, 1): Started at LG as a sophomore before moving to LT in 2013-'14. "He's a lot like Scherff," said one scout. "Not unlike Bulaga. Little short-armed (33¼). Kind of like a Sam Baker kind of tackle with the Falcons but he could be a really good guard." Described by another scout as a "mean" player. "He could be a Pro Bowl guard, but I also think he can play tackle," a third scout said. "He's a really good run blocker. He's athletic. He's nasty." Tied with Humphries for the lowest score (12) on the Wonderlic among the top-25 offensive linemen. "I think he's smart enough to play tackle," a fourth scout said. "He's a motivated guy and I think he'll learn it." From Baton Rouge, La. "He's got good girth, he's strong, he can bend his knees and he's got play instincts," a fifth scout said. "He doesn't have ideal length to be a full-time left tackle. He only took a few reps at right tackle during Senior Bowl week and you could tell he's never played the right side. It was awkward. But when you see him in a workout and roll it all together, he's going to be a longtime starter at left guard or left tackle."

3. LAKEN TOMLINSON, Duke (6-3½, 319, 5.26, 1-2): Four-year starter at RG. "If there's a first-round guard in this draft and he's not a conversion it's Tomlinson," one scout said. "He's a plug-and-play, start-first-day right or left guard. He plays better than (Chance) Warmack. He's big, athletic, he can pull, he can block at the point, he's smart. He might be a great center, too, if you tried him there." Born in Jamaica, moved to the U.S. at 10. "He wants to be a doctor," said another scout. "Some people want to be sure he's committed to football, which I think he is. The kid loves football. Has played a ton of football. High character. Has ambitions outside football." Graduated from Chicago Lane Tech. "He looks better on the hoof than any subject in the draft other than Scherff," a third scout said. "Great kid, smart (Wonderlic of 23). But how many Duke linemen have there been? You can't name them. Plus, he gets over his toes. He's top-heavy."

4. TRE' JACKSON, Florida State (6-3½, 322, 5.50, 2): Made 42 starts at RG. "He's better than Tomlinson," said one scout. "He gets better movement. He is a quiet leader with strength and power, but he lacks the length (32 5/8 arms). He will struggle mentally sorting out the process." Named MVP of the South team at the Senior Bowl. "He was coached well by Rick Trickett, who is one of the best (O-line) coaches around," said a second scout. "He was a very steady player. Not special. He's a really good short setter in pass pro and he uses his hands well," From Jesup, Calif. "If he was at another school he'd be a later-round guy," a third scout said. "He wouldn't be getting near the attention he does. He's slow, and slow-footed. Then he's not real long and he can't handle the wide rush. The Rose Bowl game, he got destroyed."

5. A.J. CANN, South Carolina (6-2½, 311, 5.48, 2-3): Made 51 starts at LG. "He has mass, toughs and he's competitive," one scout said. "He's square and gets movement at the point. He'll need a little work in pass pro. He's a little bit shorter and a little bit slow-footed. He's like Larry Warford or Chance Warmack, one of those guys. But the mental part will scare you a little bit." Led guards in bench-press reps (30) and vertical jump (32½). Worked at center for scouts this spring and snapped adequately. "There's nothing special about him," a second scout said. "Not a great athlete, not an overly physical or powerful guy. Everything about him is solid." From Bamberg, S.C.

6. JEREMIAH POUTASI, Utah (6-5, 338, 5.33, 2-3): Third-year junior made the somewhat surprising decision to leave the Utes a year early. Started at RT in 2012 and at LT the past two seasons. "We have him as a guard," said one scout. "He's a starting guard. He doesn't move well enough to protect the edges (at tackle). If you like big sluggers in there, Baltimore type, he's going to play." Won't turn 21 until August. "He's more athletic than Flowers, but his workout was bad," another scout said. "He has to be a right tackle or guard. He held up OK at left tackle against the good pass rushers of the Pac-10." From Las Vegas.

7. DARYL WILLIAMS, Oklahoma (6-5, 326, 5.38, 3): Three-year starter at RT. "Big guys play," said one scout. "He's got some toughness to him. He's not a good athlete. Strictly a right tackle. He could go third round because big bodies go. His value is fourth, fifth round." Although his 35-inch arms are befitting a tackle, his feet and athleticism aren't. "You like his intangibles," another scout said. "He's tough, he's a good kid, he'll do everything you want. Just not a very good athlete." Out of Lake Dallas, Texas.

8. JARVIS HARRISON, Texas A&M (6-4, 328, 5.21, 3-4): Labeled a "knucklehead" by three scouts. "He played really well in 2013, but this year he just kind of did his own thing and it showed," one scout said. "The trainer will tell the offensive linemen when they come into the locker room to cut the tape off their shoes and put it in a specific pile. Everybody follows that to the letter, but he'll do something completely opposite. Not very highly regarded at the school. He's smart enough to know to stay out of the police blotter type of thing. Just a pain in the (expletive)." Started 37 games over four seasons at LG and LT. "They benched him for like the first four games of (2014)," another scout said. "I could never get a straight answer there. Athletically, he certainly has the ability to go third round. He's lazy." "He short-sets these guys and gets his hands on them, they're dead," a third scout said. "On film, the guy was extremely impressive." From Navasota, Texas.

9. JOHN MILLER, Louisville (6-2½, 307, 5.23, 4): Four-year starter at guard. "You like the way he plays," one scout said. "He's tough, but he's 6-2 and 300. OK athlete. He's got some quickness but he's not a great player. He struggles in protection some. Gets beaten on the edges." Improved from 7 to 14 on the Wonderlic but teams still wonder about his ability to react and adjust. "Learning is a little bit of a process," a second scout said. "Pass pro is good enough. Oh, yeah, he's a good player." From Miami.

10. JAMIL DOUGLAS, Arizona State (6-4, 306, 5.21, 4-5): Viewed as a four-position backup. "Like him as a backup dual flexibility guy," one scout. "Guard-tackle who may be a center." Started at LG in 2012-'13 and at LT in '14. "I think he'll have to go to some type of zone team," another scout said. "Project. He has really nice feet and movement but he does get pushed around." From Cypress, Calif.

OTHERS: Jon Feliciano, Miami; Josue Matias, Florida State; Mark Glowinski, West Virginia; Arie Kouandjio, Alabama; Robert Myers, Tennessee State; Matt Rotheram, Pittsburgh; Bobby Hart, Florida State; Quinton Spain, West Virginia.

CENTERS

1. CAMERON ERVING, Florida State (6-5½, 311, 5.12, 1-2): The Seminoles talked about moving him to center before the season but didn't pull the trigger until five games remained. "That line didn't block well until they moved him," one scout said. "It cleaned up so much inside. He's not a 320-pound mauling center but he gets after you. He's such a good athlete and is extremely smart. Great kid. At center, his upside is huge." Would become the NFL's tallest center. "I think he's too tall for center," a second scout said. "He's got stiff ankles and plays too small. He smothers college players, but if anyone works his edges he's not great laterally. I don't see it." Made 20 tackles and a sack as a backup DT in 2011 before moving to LT and starting 37 games. "It (height) hasn't been a problem," a third scout said. "His arms (34 1/8) are so long, he just locks those guys out. He just gets on the nose (tackle). Guard may be his best position. He could start at three positions." From Moultrie, Calif.

2. HRONISS GRASU, Oregon (6-3, 300, 5.03, 2-3): Four-year starter from Los Angeles. "He's smart (Wonderlic of 28) and tough," said one scout. "He's athletic. He played in that spread attack so he can fit in a zone scheme. He's not as heavy as you want him to be to deal with nose tackles all day but he has the athletic ability to compete in a zone offense." Borderline arm length (32 1/8). "Like him," another scout said. "He's not as strong or as big... but if I'm just going center I'm going to go Grasu." Excellent blocker at the LB level.

3. ALI MARPET, Hobart (N.Y.) (6-4, 304, 5.00, 3): Easily the best NCAA Division III prospect in the draft. "He found out what Division I football was like at the Senior Bowl," one scout said. "Thing I liked about him, he was competitive. But I don't know if he's good enough to play." Three-year starter at LT but often practiced at center in 2013-'14. Played LG and LT at Senior Bowl and might have been the best O-lineman there. "For a guy who had no technique and didn't know what he was doing, he went and more than held his own," said another scout. "I could see him in the third round, but it's all a guess." Scored 33 on the Wonderlic. Compared by one scout to C-G Joe Berger of the Vikings. "My immediate comparison was JC Tretter, and I think he's better than JC," a third scout said. "He blew up the combine. This kid has passed every test. He has a tremendous amount of upside." From Hastings-on-Hudson, N.Y.

4. MITCH MORSE, Missouri (6-5½, 306, 5.16, 3): Of his 40 starts, 18 were at RT, 14 at LT and eight, in 2012, came at center. "Center is a perfect position," one scout said. "He kind of grows on me. He's not a naturally big guy so he's going to get torqued a little bit. He's got a degree of toughness about him that shows in his play." Paced centers on the bench press (36 reps) and the vertical jump (31), and scored 29 on the Wonderlic. Short arms (32¼) almost force him inside. "He's my sleeper," another scout said. "This guy is one tough sucker. You talk about toughness and tenacity. You grade him and he just blocks his guy. Their left tackle last year (Justin Britt) went to Seattle and started, and there's no comparison between the two. His feet are good enough." From Austin, Texas.

5. B.J. FINNEY, Kansas State (6-3½, 315, 5.31, 5-6): Walk-on started school-record 52 games, including 51 at center. "He has some athletic limitations, but I like his wrestling background," one scout said. "Just a tough, gritty player. Centers nowadays really don't have to be special athletically." First O-lineman at K-State to be a team captain three times. From Andale, Kan.

OTHERS: Andy Gallik, Boston College; Reese Dismukes, Auburn; Shaq Mason, Georgia Tech; Chris Jasperse, Marshall; Max Garcia, Florida; Greg Mancz, Toledo; Chad Hamilton, Coastal Carolina.
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Default Re: Bob McGinn on 2015 NFL Draft

BOB MCGINN’S DRAFT SERIES: OFFENSIVE LINEMEN
Iowa's Brandon Scherff leads big crop
Quote:
Offensive line is regarded as one of the richest positions in this NFL draft. Seven blockers appear headed for the first round, and possibly four more will go by the 50th pick.

Strangely, there might not be an offensive lineman worthy of a top-10 pick even though 18 of them were taken that high in the last nine drafts.

Brandon Scherff, clearly the best player available, has fewer negatives than just about any player in the entire draft. He's about as safe as can be.

The problem for many teams with early picks is they view Scherff as a better NFL guard than tackle, where he started on the left side at Iowa. His modest arm length (33 3/8 inches) and height (6 feet 4½) are more typical of inside than outside players at the pro level.

Few teams want to draft an inside player in the top 10. The only pure guards taken that high in the last 20 years — Chris Naeole (No. 10, 1997), Chance Warmack (No. 10, '13) and Jonathan Cooper (No. 7, '13) — probably were mistakes.

"Scherff isn't dominant," said an executive in personnel for an NFC team. "He's not your typical top guy and he doesn't have the length you want at tackle. How high do you pick a guy you're projecting to guard?"

Another personnel man insisted that Scherff had enough game to be considered comparable to the first offensive lineman taken in other drafts.

"I was at Iowa pro day," the scout said, "and he's as athletic as anybody last year and as good as anybody last year. After Scherff, none of them belong with the top group from last year."

A Journal Sentinel poll of 19 personnel people this month underscored Scherff's pre-eminent position. After the scouts listed their top five offensive linemen regardless of position, five points were assigned for a first-place vote, four for second and so on.

Scherff piled up 86 points and 13 first-place votes, easily outdistancing Andrus Peat (53, three). Others with first-round credentials include La'el Collins (30, one), Cedric Ogbuehi (28, one), Cameron Erving (25), Ereck Flowers (25) and D.J. Humphries (25, one).

Also receiving votes were Donovan Smith (six), T.J. Clemmings (four), Laken Tomlinson (two) and Jake Fisher (one).

One might think the fact Scherff played for the Hawkeyes would be considered an immense plus by NFL teams.

During Kirk Ferentz' stint as offensive line coach from 1981-'89, NFL teams plucked 11 of his blockers, including three in the first round (Green Bay's Ron Hallstrom, 1982) and three in the third (Green Bay's Dave Croston, '87).

After spending six seasons as an offensive line coach in the NFL, Ferentz returned to Iowa City as head coach in 1999. In the drafts of 2000-'14, Iowa has had 13 offensive linemen selected.

Ferentz has had able offensive line coaches such as Joe Philbin (1999-'02), but year after year he spends a large amount of time working individually with offensive linemen.

"Kirk just does a great job," one veteran scout said. "They're always good technicians. They know how to kick-step, how to set, how to get their hands on people."

Because of the excellent training and tradition, however, several scouts said offensive linemen from Iowa scared them.

"Iowa has a track record most of the time of getting two- and three-star players and developing them over the course of their careers," said Phil Savage, executive director of the Senior Bowl and an NFL general manager and personnel director for 15 years.

"They're well-coached, they train hard, they are consistent in their work ethic and approach. Because of that development, are they close to being maxed out?"

Since 2003, Iowa has had six offensive linemen taken in the top 100. The list includes guard Eric Steinbach (No. 33, 2003), center Bruce Nelson (No. 50, '03), tackle-guard Robert Gallery (No. 2, '04), tackle-guard Marshal Yanda (No. 87, '07), tackle Bryan Bulaga (No. 23, '10) and tackle Riley Reiff (No. 23, '12).

In light of those players, Savage was asked how he'd feel about selecting Scherff.

"It would give me pause if I was taking him in the top 10," replied Savage. "If I was taking him where some of those other guys went, in the second half of the first round or the top of the second, you'd feel great about it, probably.

"I don't think Scherff is an elite player. I think he's a good, solid prospect."

Another veteran scout considered Iowa's recent draft entries and said, "There's been a lot of failures out of there. Kirk's a good O-line coach so those guys end up getting coached as well as they're ever going to be.

"Then you get them to your camp and you think they're going to get better, but that's just the way they are."

In truth, those six high picks from Iowa have gotten a bum rap. It's due largely to Gallery, who after flopping at tackle became a competitive guard in an eight-year career.

Nelson was a bust, but the others all started for years. Steinbach became a top-five guard in Cincinnati but never made the Pro Bowl, something Yanda has done the last three seasons for Baltimore.

Reiff has started at left tackle two of his three seasons in Detroit and is at least adequate. Bulaga has been a good player in Green Bay when he hasn't been sidelined by injury.

Scherff, from Denison, Iowa, joins Nelson, Gallery and Yanda as products of Iowa high schools. Reiff is from South Dakota, Bulaga from suburban Chicago.

Three scouts said Scherff would be a better player than Bulaga. Although an inch shorter than Bulaga, Scherff ran a faster 40 (5.04 to 5.23), performed better vertical (32½ inches to 27½) and broad jumps (8-11 to 8-2), and had far larger hands (11 inches to 9¼).

Probably the most apt comparison would be Zack Martin, the Dallas Cowboys' right guard who made the Pro Bowl as a rookie after being drafted No. 16 last year.

Martin (6-4, 309) was a four-year starter at left tackle for Notre Dame. He took his 32 7/8-inch arms inside and had a tremendous year.

"Scherff's similar to Zack Martin except he's stronger," one NFC executive said. "He's a hell of an athlete. This guy is a 325-pound moose."

UNSUNG HERO

Jon Feliciano, G, Miami: Last year, a Hurricanes lineman with athletic limitations, Brandon Linder, went to Jacksonville in the third round and started 15 games at RG. Feliciano (6-4, 325), another tough guy, is almost a carbon copy of Linder. He has guard-center versatility and a go-for-the-throat mentality that should make him a mid-round pick.

SCOUTS' NIGHTMARE

Greg Mancz, C-G, Toledo: Four-year starter at RT, RG and center with legitimate athletic ability, good toughness and high intelligence. However, he underwent another shoulder surgery after the season and won't be able to work out before the draft. If Mancz can stay on the field, he could be a swingman for a long time.

PACKERS' PICK TO REMEMBER

Rich Moran, G, San Diego State: Third-round draft choice in 1985. Became a starter midway through his rookie season and basically held the job when he wasn't battling knee problems. Played 108 games in nine seasons, starting 82. Worked in business, as an NFL player agent and, in recent years, as a high school coach. In January, he took the offensive line coaching job at Division II Upper Iowa University.

QUOTE TO NOTE

NFL personnel director: "That (low score on the Wonderlic) isn't a big deal for tackles. It's more of a big deal for guards."
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