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Tag:Iowa
Posted on: April 21, 2010 11:36 pm
Edited on: April 22, 2010 5:39 pm
 

The CBs...

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1.     Kyle Wilson Boise St – I first noticed Wilson in 2008, but I really got tuned in to him during the current offseason.  This guy has premiere cover skills and he has shown that against WRs from bigger schools during his regular season career and the ’09 All-Star game season.  While his Jr. year looked better in many ways, His offseason showings have alleviated many of the concerns people had about him.  I have also heard that he has caught the eyes of several NFL scouts recently, causing some teams to rank him above the more hyped, number two corner on my list.  I agree with those scouts, and I’m about to tell you why.

2.     Joe Haden Fla – I like Haden.  He’s a great athlete.  He was a high school QB with his path blocked by a guy named Tebow.  So he moved to CB to fill a Florida need.  Considering his relative inexperience, he’s done well.  But my concern stems from the footage I’ve seen of him allowing too many catches in front of him.  He was initially pegged as a top 10 selection until a slow 40 at the Combine caused his stock to drop.  I think Haden would have been best served to return for his Sr. season.  But I understand that uncertainty about the NFL labor situation probably drove his decision to leave early.  That being said, I think being picked in the 15-20 range, will allow him to develop without the heavy scrutiny associated with a higher pick.  If he goes higher than that, people may be disappointed.

3.     Patrick Robinson FSU – People are all over the map about this guy.  He’s been somewhat inconsistent given his natural ability.  But I think Robinson has the skill set to rise to the challenge.  I won’t be shocked if he is a late first round pick.

4.     Kareem Jackson Ala – A fast riser of late.  He has pretty good size for a CB, but I’m not wowed by the footage I’ve seen.  Jackson though, has experience lining up against some pretty good competition in the SEC.  He could start out as a nickel guy for an experienced team.  I could see Philly or Baltimore jumping on him in round one.

5.     Akwasi Owusu-Ansah Ind (Pa.) – I put him here because he ran a blazing 40 time at his pro day.  He also has skills as a return man.  It seems that occasionally a small school guy like Owusu-Ansah emerges as a steal, so I’m betting on that.  Plus, I am somewhat underwhelmed with what lies beneath him on this list.

6.     Perrish Cox Ok St – He was suspended for his bowl game.  He was banned from his pro day.  He didn’t impress with his Combine 40 time.  But Cox would be ranked much higher if not for some recent transgressions.  Plus, he has been a dynamic return man; a skill that may sway some teams in and of itself.  Some guys can overcome off-the-field issues and I just have a hunch that Cox may be a guy whose play overshadows his questionable attitude.

7.     Chris Cook Va – A big CB with good 40 times.  I think his value has increased because some teams may view him as a safety at the next level.

8.     Alterraun Verner UCLA – Ultra-productive at the outset of 2009, but he fell off as the season progressed.  He had a great pro day though, and that should raise his stock in the eyes of some teams.

9.     Devin McCourty Rut – I’m not sure why so many people are so high on this guy.  He made very few picks and the only thing that stands out to me is the number of tackles he made.  Don’t you want your CBs to make plays on the ball rather than making tackles?  To me, he let the man he was covering have too big of a cushion in too many instances.

10.  Amari Spievey Iowa – What’s that?  I’m letting my Big Ten bias show?  Well maybe so.  But I haven’t seen enough of USF’s Jerome Murphy or WF’s Brandon Ghee to rank them ahead of the Hawkeye.  So sue me.

Guys who could have been #10 on my list: Murphy and Ghee.

Guy who is a sweet kick returner but a so-so at best CB: Javier Arenas Ala.

And this guy went to USC and had a good pro day: Kevin Thomas – Don’t sleep on this guy.

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Posted on: April 21, 2010 11:32 pm
Edited on: April 22, 2010 5:35 pm
 

The ILBs...

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1.     Rolando McClain Ala – Honestly, he’s the only guy I can see thriving at ILB no matter what team takes him.  There were questions about his speed after he didn’t run at the Combine.  Then he showed up in the 4.6 range at his pro day.  He’s plenty fast and plenty productive in my book.  Some team in the top 15 will be very happy with McClain.

2.     Sean Lee PSU – I think he will be the first PSU LB drafted thanks to Bowman’s issues away from the field.  Lee has decent size for the position even if a 3-4 team takes him.  He had a knee injury in 2008, which may worry some teams but he appears to be adequately recovered from that.

3.     Jamar Chaney Miss St – He has good size and speed.  He ‘s helped himself with a good offseason.

4.     Pat Angerer Iowa – He’s on the small side but he’s aggressive and tough.  I saw a lot of Iowa, so maybe I have some of their guys ranked too high, but I don’t think so.  He will at least help immediately on special teams.  In fact, I think he could thrive in that role.

5.     Donald Butler Wash – This is another guy whose helped himself with a great offseason.  I wish I had seen more of him in game action, but unfortunately I started this project a little too late to see many Pac 10 games that weren’t on national TV.

6.     Brandon Spikes Fla – I felt that I had to include him on this list because he seemed to make a lot of plays in college.  But when I looked back, he seemed to be at his best as a So.  Maybe his shockingly surprising lack of speed caught up with him and he was living off of his reputation.

Guy from Troy: Boris Lee Troy – I learned during the course of my football watching and research that Troy had LBs named Boris Lee and Bear Woods.  That just sounded cool to me.

Guy who looked good at the East-West Shrine game: Reggie Carter UCLA – may have improved his stock based on that week alone.

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Posted on: April 21, 2010 11:10 pm
Edited on: April 22, 2010 5:19 pm
 

The OTs...

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1.     Russell Okung Ok St – I’m hearing that Washington may take Trent Williams from rival Oklahoma because he better fits their scheme.  I think that would be a mistake.  I also am hearing that Detroit may take Okung #2 instead of Ndamakong Suh.  And I think that would be a mistake too (I think Suh is the best player in the draft).  But Okung is the best OT this year and he will be a 10-year starter wherever he ends up.

2.     Bryan Bulaga Iowa – He has a thyroid condition that makes some folks nervous.  That appears to be under control.  He has a “went to the same school as Robert Gallery” condition that makes other people nervous.  I have a newsflash for people: Just because a guy went to the same school and played the same position as another guy, does not make them the same.  To me, that’s just a lazy way to assess things.  Yes Bulaga was handled by Michigan’s Brandon Graham in 2009.  Well, Graham’s a good player too.  Finally, I’ve heard that Bulaga has short arms.  So did Jake Long and Joe Thomas.  They turned out just fine.  And so will Bulaga.

3.     Trent Williams Ok – If not for the freakish Bruce Campbell, Williams may have been the star of the first few days of this year’s combine.  Yes, Bulaga struggled mightily with Graham.  But didn’t Williams also struggle against lesser opposition in the BYU game?  Just sayin’.

4.     Rodger Saffold IU – He has flashed athleticism and versatility since the end of the season.  I think he was overlooked because he played football at a school known for basketball.  Scouts are raving about Saffold’s pass blocking, and since the NFL seems pass happy at the moment, he gets extra points for that in my book.

5.     Anthony Davis Rut – Would be higher but has some discipline concerns.  I know he has big time talent, but I’m not sure about his heart or his head.

6.     Vladimir Ducasse UMass – Small school player who has dramatically improved his stock since the end of ’09 as far as I can tell.  I’ve read that he is a dark-horse 1st rounder at this point.  I think that’s too high, but he can play tackle or guard, so flexibility is a big thing.  He’d be a feel-good story if he could break into that upper echelon.

7.     Charles Brown USC – He might go ahead of Ducasse, and maybe he deserves to.  I admit that I don’t know much about Brown, but I am sure he should be ahead of the next guy.

8.     Bruce Campbell Mary – This year’s combine superstar.  When I saw him run I immediately thought “this dude is going #8 to the Raiders.”  Maybe that’s too simple, but can you blame me after the DHB pick at #7 last year?  Campbell is, by most accounts, maddeningly inconsistent.  If his athleticism can translate to good play in the pros, then I have him ranked way too low.

Small school guy: Jared Veldheer Hillsdale – He’s a monster size-wise.  His competition has obviously not been strong, but I think that can be remedied by good pro coaching.

Guy who did something unspeakable before college: Tony Washington Abeline-Christian – If you don’t know what I’m referring to, Google him.

Guys with cool names: Ed Wang VT and Selvish Capers WVU – The names may be cool, but the postseason has been rough for these two prospects.

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Posted on: April 21, 2010 11:05 pm
Edited on: April 22, 2010 5:14 pm
 

The TEs...

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1.     Aaron Hernandez Fla – I kind of see this guy as a Dallas Clark-type.  Clark is a better blocker, of course, but Hernandez can stretch the field.  Trust me, he made Tebow look like a better QB than he was.  Most people I’ve seen think Hernandez is no better than the 3rd TE available.  But he didn’t have a torn ACL or a season-ending back injury as far as I know.  Plus, he actually played football in real games in 2009.  In my mind, that counts.  Big time.

2.     Jermaine Gresham Okl – He would be number one on this list if not for the torn ACL that wiped out his 2009.  I’ve had a torn ACL, and (while I’m no pro athlete) that is about the worst injury outside of a torn Achilles’ tendon that a football player can have.  At the very least, I believe that this injury will limit Gresham’s longevity.  At most, it will stunt a once promising prospect’s growth.

3.     Jimmy Graham Mia (Fl) – Call me a sucker but I think there is something to this “former basketballer becomes TE” thing.  Plus, the U has a history of producing talented TEs. Jimmy doesn’t have the numbers, but he has the athleticism.  I put him here at #3 on a hunch.  Let’s see if I’m onto something.

4.     Anthony McCoy USC – I’m curious to see if the positive test for Mary Jane hurts his stock.  I don’t think it will, based on recent draft history.  Talent trumps the dabbling in the sticky-icky-icky.  But he’ll already be in the substance abuse program. So only certain bold teams will include him on the board come draft weekend.

5.     Dennis Pitta BYU – He isn’t fast but he can catch and he can block.  I wasn’t initially high on Pitta, but I am skeptical of a TE class that many “experts” think is topped by two guys who missed all of 2009.  I think that moves the very solid Pitta up on the list of available TEs.

6.     Rob Gronkowski Ari – This guy might be #1 on some lists.  But he hurt his freaking BACK!!  While lifting weights!  Everything revolves around the back and he has had back surgery!  And football players need to be able to lift weights.  I see Gronkowski as one of the biggest risks in the draft.  That’s why he’s #6.  He’s got loads of talent, but some guys can’t withstand the punishment of pro football.

7.     Dorin Dickerson Pitt – He’s an athletic freak who played all over the place in college.  I see him as a poor man’s Hernandez.  He has a lot to prove as far as blocking is concerned but he can be an immediate weapon in the passing game.  If the right team drafts him, he could have an impact in 2010.  If not, he could end up on the practice squad. 

8.     Ed Dickson Ore – I should probably have him at least above Dickerson.  But Dickerson’s workouts were so damned good.  Honestly, Dickson likely fits in with more teams’ schemes.  But I’ll stick with my gut.

9.     Clay Harbor Mizz St – This is a small-school guy with a good workout season under his belt.  Teams will like his versatility as a TE/H-back, but he will have to adjust to a much higher level of competition.

10. Andrew Quarless PSU – A lot of talent, and attitude to match.  He has off-the-field question marks surrounding him after suspensions at Penn State.  Plus, he has “GODS GIFT” tattooed on the backs of his arms.  Yes, in block letters, with no apostrophe.  That fact almost made me drop him out of the top 10.  But he’s also got pretty good hands and speed. 

Workout warrior: Jameson Konz Kent – Played a little FB, a little LB, a little TE…he’ll find a role.  Plus, doesn’t at least one guy from Kent make it every year?

Guy whose name I like: Tony Moeaki Iowa – Injuries were a problem in college.

Guy who could move to FB: Garrett Graham Wisc – FB/TE tweener.

Another guy I’ve seen on the rise lately: Mickey Shuler PSU – The other Penn State TE.  He has enjoyed a good offseason.

And another guy for no good reason: Colin Peek Ala – All I can say is that during the BCS Championship Game, Brent Musberger called him a “dandy” TE.  Good enough for me.

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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com