On The Clock NFL Mock Draft from Fanspeak.com

Dion Bailey: A Closer Look at the USC Safety

April 24, 2014 in Draft Reports

By: Justin Partlow

 

Dion Bailey was seen as a possible NFL LB, but after a move to Safety the past year he’s now seen as a legitimate top 3 round prospect. What makes Bailey special is his ability to play with those traditional LB instincts, but also play in space and coverage like a safety. Bailey has his warts and will need seasoning, but if developed properly a team could have a very good SS on their hands for an extended period of time. Below I’ll take a look at what Bailey does well and what he needs to improve on while he’s a member of the NFL.

 

Technique:

 

When watching Bailey it’s pretty easy to tell he’s still playing with the natural LB instincts that he has, but that will need to change soon when he reaches the NFL. Right now Bailey relies on his hands too much and plays too aggressive which leads to some overpursuit of plays and with his hands it will lead to penalties for pass interference or illegal contact. Bailey does a good job though of using his feet to his advantage. He does a good job of flipping his hips well and is able to mirror both slot receivers as well as TE prospects. This will make Bailey an even more valuable commodity due to his ability to cover multiple positions, which will allow for defensive coordinators to become more creative with him. Bailey needs to improve on his hands and natural technique and move away from the LB mentality, but with only playing one year at S it was expected that he would struggle with the transition. Instead what was seen on film was someone who has struggled at times, but shown the ability to be a starting caliber SS.

 

Run Defense:

 

This is easily what Bailey does best on film and again as previously mentioned it goes back to his natural LB roots that he has. Bailey does a good job of taking on blocks and attempting to disengage from them in attempts to make the play in the running game. What is noticeable on film though is that Bailey does struggle to disengage and tries to use his speed in order to get around guys. This is easy to get by with in college as he’s a physical imposing player compared to others, but in the pros with players just as fast and strong as he is, he’ll struggle at times. The other thing about Bailey I like is how instinctual he plays on film. You never really see Bailey play in run defense with much hesitation. He does a very good job of seeing the play before it happens and filling the hole immediately or as I mentioned above engage the blocker to make the play. This will be clutch for Bailey if he’s moving into the SS role that I think he should be playing in when he reaches the NFL.

 

Pass Defense:

 

While not as well defined as his ability to play run defense, Bailey shows both some highlights and lowlights in regards to his pass defense. I like how Bailey understands zone concepts and is able to read his zone responsibilities and be able to play pass coverage accordingly. I also like how Bailey when in man coverage is able to get his hands on the defender and play with a bit of a mean streak in press coverage. Bailey though needs to improve on his overall natural ability to play coverage. A lot of times on film when you looked at it, USC would place another secondary member behind him and attempt to play bracket coverage. It always seemed that way whenever Bailey was put into man coverage. This shows a bit of a lack of trust still with someone learning the position. Bailey will need to improve his man coverage in order to allow teams to be forced to have to always bracket coverage.

 

Overall:

 

Dion Bailey is someone who has a high-upside as a player, but also poses a risk because of his “Green” ability at the S position. With his natural ability to combine his LB instincts and transition them to S, Bailey will become a hot commodity if he can continue to improve on his ability that he’s shown in just this past year at USC. Look for Bailey to come off the board somewhere in the late 2nd round to mid 3rd round range and provide to be a very good value pick if he continues the improvement he showed all year.

Exciting Announcement: New Big Boards Added to On the Clock

April 23, 2014 in On The Clock

We have very exciting news to announce! Fanspeak has added not one but TWO new big boards to On the Clock! We have added big boards from Dan Shonka of Ourlads and Shane P. Hallam of DraftTV.

Both these guys and their websites & work are very reputable in the Scouting industry and we are thrilled and honored to have them as a big board partner for On the Clock!

Bottom line, you won't agree with all the scouts or big boards, but now you have more big boards to choose from to simulate your mock drafts. Or you could upgrade to On the Clock Premium so you can customize & re-rank your OWN big board!

Either way, there's a little over 2 weeks left until the NFL Draft begins so mock your heart out! Also remember Fanspeak will be updating the big boards each night of the draft, so you can still mock Friday and Saturday and throughout the NFL Draft as picks are being made!

 

ontheclockpremium

Mid Round CB’s to Watch in the Draft

April 22, 2014 in Draft Reports

By: Justin Partlow

 

When the 2014 NFL Draft prospect list began to be finalized, it was easy to see how talented the class was overall. One of the biggest and most underrated parts of the draft is the depth of the CB class. What makes the mid round CB class special is they all have ability to become starters at positions over time. Below I’ll take a look at three CB’s who could become starters after some developing for their respective teams.

 

Pierre Desir CB Lindenwood

 

Pierre Desir was one of the most unknown players heading into the all-star circuit due to his level of play he was coming from. After two impressive all-star circuit games, teams began to go back and watch film on Desir and they were certainly impressed with what was shown on film. Desir is a lockdown corner coming from D-2 football and showed the ability to blanket the top receivers at the different circuits he participated in. After continuing that momentum all throughout the offseason teams have pegged Desir somewhere to go in that possible 3rd round range, but could also rise if there is an early run on CB’s in the draft. Desir shows top end ability, but still there will be a bit of a learning curve as he moves up to playing against NFL talent each week. Desir has the talent to be a starting CB, but will need some seasoning before he reaches that point.

 

Nevin Lawson CB Utah State

 

Another player who benefited from the postseason all-star circuit, Lawson is a CB who uses his aggressiveness to be successful. Lawson isn’t the biggest player on the field, but what he doesn’t have in height he makes up for with his aggressive play and ability to play both in off-man schemes and in press coverage. Lawson is most effective when playing in press coverage, as he’s able to redirect WR’s off their routes, but also leads to a lot of Lawson’s issues as he can become too aggressive and it leads to penalties. Lawson on film though shows very fluid hips and the ability to cover outside receivers despite his height. Lawson is another player who has seen his stock rise from the later rounds to now into the 3rd to 4th round range. Teams will have to decide early on if they want Lawson to play more in the slot or outside, but if they commit to it early Lawson can become a starting CB for a while in the NFL.

 

Walt Aikens CB Liberty

 

Continuing the theme of guys who have worked their names up the rankings with their performances at the all-star circuit, Walt Aikens drew the attention of teams with his ability shown. Aikens comes from the 1-AA(FCS) ranks where he was a very good cover corner that showed the ability to play both in off man and press coverage, but played best in press coverage. Aikens is a physical player and that leads to a lot of his penalties as well, similar to what was mentioned with Lawson earlier. Aikens will need a good amount of seasoning as he needs to work on playing more with technique and not just relying on becoming a “grabbing” CB in the NFL. If Aikens can improve on his technique moving into the NFL he could become a starting CB as he shows the ability to flip his hips and play with all receivers no matter what their speed or height is. Look for Aikens to come off the board in the 4th round and become a very good developmental pick who could very well turn into a starting CB in the NFL.

User Mocks for Week of 4/12-4/19

April 20, 2014 in On The Clock, OTC: User Mock Drafts

For this week, we wanted to highlight some users that featured their On the Clock Mock Drafts on other websites. We appreciate you starting the discussion or debate using On the Clock. This is exactly what we had in mind when we created this NFL Draft tool!

Keep submitting your user mock drafts because we'll be featuring them the next 3 weeks! AND in 2 weeks we'll do a featured where we pick our favorite user mock from EVERY NFL Team and feature them here! So keep submitting to try to represent your team as the GM!

 

Here's the user mocks for this week…

 

JESS for the Cardinals & posted on Revenge of the Birds:

*NOTE:  Used Premium for Trades and turned 6 picks into 9!

38 LB RYAN SHAZIER

OHIO STATE

 

69 DT DOMINIQUE EASLEY

FLORIDA

 

71 RB TRE MASON

AUBURN

 

75 QB A.J. MCCARRON

ALABAMA

 

106 LB CHRISTIAN JONES

FLORIDA STATE

 

120 DT WILL SUTTON

ARIZONA STATE

 

127 TE C.J. FIEDOROWICZ

IOWA

 

142 CB ANTONE EXUM

VIRGINIA TECH

 

185 WR JALEN SAUNDERS

 

OKLAHOMA

 

MARK for the Vikings & Posted on Daily Norseman:

 

*NOTE:  Used Premium for Trades!

 

1ST TRADE – 1.8 TO THE RAMS FOR 1.13 & 2.12
2ND TRADE – 2015 2ND TO THE 49ERS FOR 2.29 & 5.30
3RD TRADE – 3.32 TO THE BILLS FOR 4.9 & 5.9
4TH TRADE – 2015 7TH TO THE BENGALS FOR 7.24
13  WR  MIKE EVANS  TEXAS A&M
34  ILB  C.J. MOSLEY  ALABAMA
44  DE  TRENT MURPHY  STANFORD
61  QB  JIMMY GAROPPOLO  EASTERN ILLINOIS
72  LB  CHRISTIAN JONES  FLORIDA STATE
109  DT  DAQUAN JONES  PENN STATE
132  CB  ANTONE EXUM  VIRGINIA TECH
149  DE  BRENT URBAN  VIRGINIA
170  G  TRAI TURNER  LSU
184  S  BROCK VEREEN  MINNESOTA
239  RB  ISAIAH CROWELL  ALABAMA STATE
247  FB  TREY MILLARD  OKLAHOMA

 

SCOTTY for the Broncos & posted on Mile High Report:

 

31 LB RYAN SHAZIER

OHIO STATE

 

63 C WESTON RICHBURG

COLORADO STATE

 

95 CB PIERRE DESIR

LINDENWOOD

 

131 DE JAMES GAYLE

VIRGINIA TECH

 

171 RB KAPRI BIBBS

COLORADO STATE

 

207 WR JEFF JANIS

SAGINAW VALLEY

 

246 ILB AVERY WILLIAMSON

KENTUCKY

 

 

2014 NFL Draft Guide Full 7-Round Mock Draft

April 20, 2014 in Mock Drafts

Below is Fanspeak's final 7-Round Mock Draft for our 2014 NFL Draft Guide. The 2014 NFL Draft Guide will be available by this Wednesday for FREE!

You can also get a 2014 NFL Draft Guide PREMIUM version by subscribing to On the Clock Premium HERE! The Premium Draft Guide Magazine includes more interviews, scouting reports, features and approximately 100 more pages of valuable content! Pre-order your PREMIUM Guide here and it will be directly emailed to you by Wednesday, as well as being able to enjoy the On the Clock Premium!

 NOTE:  This full mock draft has descriptions for first 3 Rounds and does NOT have trades. A 3 Round Trade Mock Draft with descriptions is available in the Premium NFL Draft Guide!

ROUND 1:

 

1. Houston Texans: DE Jadveon Clowney, South Carolina

-This pick could go one of three ways: A top defensive player, a quarterback, or a trade back. With no trades in this scenario, it’s down to a quarterback versus a top defensive player. If the Texans believe that one of the top quarterbacks will become an elite talent, that is the direction they should go. But if they don’t feel confident in that regard, they have to take the best player on the board. Clowney is that best player on the board, and he has the athleticism to play a rush linebacker in the Texans scheme and make an instant impact in their system.

 

2. St. Louis Rams (From Washington Redskins): OT Jake Matthews, Texas A&M

-This is a prime trading spot, but for the purposes of this pick the Rams will have to choose between an offensive tackle, a wide receiver or possibly one of the top defensive players. I think Matthews is the safest selection probably in this entire draft and Jeff Fisher is quite familiar with the Matthews family. With Jake Long’s status up in the air and Roger Saffold capable of playing inside, this pick makes a lot of sense.

 

3. Jacksonville Jaguars: QB Blake Bortles, Central Florida

-The Jaguars would probably take Jadveon Clowney if he was on the board, but landing the top quarterback in this draft class isn’t a bad fall back option. Bortles is a local kid, and would be a great option as the new face of the franchise. A couple of the top defensive players or Greg Robinson could be in consideration, but Jacksonville needs a quarterback and I don’t see them passing on Bortles.

 

4. Cleveland Browns: QB Johnny Manziel, Texas A&M

-The Browns will need to make the decision between WR Sammy Watkins and a quarterback with this pick. While they could grab Watkins here and hope for a quarterback with their 2nd first round pick, I think the possibilities with Manziel are too great to pass up. The Browns need to shake things up, and Manziel would do just that.

 

5. Oakland Raiders: OT Greg Robinson, Auburn

-The Raiders can go in just about any direction with this pick and they will likely consider Watkins, Mack, Barr and Donald quite a bit. Oakland also figures to be interested in a quarterback, so Teddy Bridgewater could be in play here. In the end Greg Robinson is an elite talent at an extremely important position. The Raiders signed Donald Penn to a cheap deal, and while they have other tackle options, Robinson is just too good to pass up.

 

6. Atlanta Falcons: OLB Khalil Mack, Buffalo

-The Falcons need to boost their defense with this selection and will likely look at the top defensive guys left on the board. Mack could play a role similar to Von Miller in Denver, where he’s a stand-up linebacker on early downs and then puts his hand on the ground in passing situations.

 

7. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: WR Sammy Watkins

-The Buccaneers wide receiver depth chart is pretty bare beyond Vincent Jackson, so the idea of adding the top receiver in the draft would be quite appealing to them. Watkins and Jackson would give Tampa a great 1-2 combo, and should help jump start the offense.

 

8. Minnesota Vikings: DT Aaron Donald, Pittsburgh

-The Vikings want a quarterback, but they probably won’t reach for one at this spot. Instead Minnesota lands Aaron Donald, one of the premier players in this draft class. He’ll get overlooked by some teams due to his lack of size, but his talent and production is undeniable. New Vikings coach Mike Zimmer had Geno Atkins in Cincy, and Donald could play a similar role here. The one issue is that Minnesota just drafted Sharrif Floyd last year and he plays basically the same position as Donald. I think Zimmer is a smart enough defensive mind to figure out how to make it work and won’t let a talent like Donald slip away.

 

9. Buffalo Bills: S Ha Ha Clinton-Dix, Alabama

-The Bills lost one of the top safeties in the league in Jarius Byrd to free agency, so finding a top replacement makes a lot of sense with this pick.

 

10. Detroit Lions: WR Mike Evans, Texas A&M

-The Lions could go a couple different directions with this selection, and there is a good chance they look for a defensive player with this pick. One guy that could give them pause is WR Mike Evans. The chance to add Mike Evans to Calvin Johnson and Golden Tate could be too tempting to pass up. If teams try to double team Johnson, having two very good additional options would give quarterback Matt Stafford the weapons to pick apart opposing defenses.

 

11. Tennessee Titans: OLB Anthony Barr, UCLA

-The Titans are moving to a 3-4 defense and need to find a rush linebacker, if they want to be successful. Anthony Barr has the potential to become that impact pass rusher, and would be a great fit for the Titans at this pick. Barr is a little raw still overall, but he should still generate a good bit of pressure as a rookie.

 

12. New York Giants: TE Eric Ebron, UNC

-The Giants could go a couple different directions, but it could be tough for them to pass up a pass catching TE like Ebron. New York has gotten a good bit of production on the cheap from the Tight End position of late, but right now they are extremely thin at the position. Ebron could be an impact guy for the Giants and give Eli Manning a key weapon to threaten defenses with.

 

13. St. Louis Rams: S Calvin Pryor, Louisville

-This may be a little high for Pryor, but the Rams have a real need here and could look to add the hard hitting Pryor with this selection. He should be an immediate starter in St. Louis and would give them a key piece in the secondary.

 

14. Chicago Bears: CB Justin Gilbert, Oklahoma State

-With the top two safeties off the board this pick will come down to either a defensive tackle or a corner. It could really go either way, but with Donald off the board and Gilbert still available, I believe the Bears would favor adding a potential shutdown corner.

 

15. Pittsburgh Steelers: OT Taylor Lewan, Michigan

-The Steelers could look to use this pick to get younger on defense, but with a potential franchise LT available in Taylor Lewan, that should be the Steelers pick. Pittsburgh has had too many issues at that spot in recent years and if they can lock that position down, they have to do so.

 

16. Dallas Cowboys: DE Dee Ford, Auburn

-The Cowboys need defensive help and in particular they need guys along the defensive line. Ford has the potential to be an impact pass rusher and could help fill the shoes of DeMarcus Ware.

 

17. Baltimore Ravens: OT/OG Zack Martin, Notre Dame

-The Ravens have a gaping hole at right tackle and could find an easy fix in Notre Dame’s Zack Martin, who also has the versatility to play inside if necessary.

 

18. New York Jets: WR Odell Beckham, LSU

-The Jets have to add more playmakers and Odell Beckham fits the bill here. He would be a nice complement to Eric Decker who is more of a possession receiver.

 

19. Miami Dolphins: OG Xavier Su’a-Filo, UCLA

-The Dolphins have started the process of rebuilding their offensive line, but they are far from complete. Xavier Su’a-Filo could get a look at right tackle, but he will probably end up being a day 1 starting guard for them.

 

20. Arizona Cardinals: QB Derek Carr, Fresno State

-The Cardinals don’t have a pressing need here, which allows them to take their quarterback of the future here in Derek Carr. Though Bridgewater is an option, Carr seems like a better fit for the Cardinals.

 

21. Green Bay Packers: DT Louis Nix, Notre Dame

-The Packers defense has struggled these past few years as they haven’t had the true nose tackle eating up blockers that their defense demands. Nix can be that guy and his presence could make everyone else better.

 

22. Philadelphia Eagles: CB Kyle Fuller, Virginia Tech

-The Eagles could go receiver here, but with it being such a deep position they could decide to wait until the 2nd round. Instead they land a good corner, capable of developing into a number 1 guy to match up versus some of the top receivers in the NFC East.

 

23. Kansas City Chiefs: WR Brandin Cooks, Oregon State

-The Chiefs are desperate for a playmaker, and Cooks would give them just that. Hopefully the deep threat of Cooks would help open up things for Dwayne Bowe, who has struggled these past two seasons.

 

24. Cincinnati Bengals: CB Darqueze Dennard, Michigan State

-Dennard is a physical press corner and he could be a nice addition to the Bengals secondary. Cincinnati doesn’t have many needs, so they can nab the falling Dennard here and should hopefully get some considerable impact from this pick.

 

25. San Diego Chargers: DT Ra’Shede Hageman, Minnesota

-The Chargers could consider some various defensive players for this pick, but they could use additional help along their defensive line. Hageman is a good fit for the 3-4 scheme and he’s a guy who is just scratching the surface of his potential.

 

26. Cleveland Browns (from Colts): CB Bradley Roby, Ohio State

-The Browns could go receiver here to give Johnny Manziel another weapon, but with Roby on the board, corner makes more sense with this pick.

 

27. New Orleans Saints: OLB Jeremiah Attachou, Georgia Tech

-This may be a slight reach, but pass rushers typically go higher than expected in the draft. The Saints defense needs to get better production from their rush linebackers and Attachou is a guy who should step in right away and upgrade their pass rush.

 

28. Carolina Panthers: OT Cyrus Kouandjio, Alabama

-Though the Panthers are in need of receiver help, their offensive line is in shambles right now. The Panthers run game is the focal point of their offense, so adding offensive linemen is a must if they want to be able to move the football. Kouandjio has some serious health concerns, but if he checks out medically the Panthers will be happy to land him here with this pick.

 

29. New England Patriots: DT Timmy Jernigan, Florida State

-The Patriots rebuilt their defensive secondary, but they haven’t done much to fix their defensive tackle need this offseason. Even if Vince Wilfork was 5 years younger and not coming off a serious injury, the Patriots would need to add some help to this group. With Wilfork’s status for this season and going forward a bit murky, this has become a serious need.

 

30. San Francisco 49ers: OLB Kyle Van Noy, BYU

-This probably wasn’t the direction the 49ers were planning on going a week or two ago, but with Aldon Smith’s latest off the field incident, San Francisco has to prepare for their future. Not only is Smith likely to be suspended for part of next season, but the team might not look to retain him beyond next year.

 

31. Denver Broncos: LB C.J. Mosley, Alabama

-The Broncos could use some help at linebacker and C.J. Mosley is one of the best in this class. He can play inside at the middle spot, and also shift outside if they want to keep a 7 man front with Von Miller rushing the quarterback.

 

32. Seattle Seahawks: DE Kony Ealy, Missouri

-The Seahawks lost multiple defensive line pieces this offseason and they need to replace those losses if they don’t want to see their defense take a step back. Ealy has the size to be a versatile piece similar to Michael Bennett.

 

Round 2:

 

1 (33). Houston Texans: QB Teddy Bridgewater, Louisville

-This is the dream scenario for the Texans as a month ago it was thought they would need to spend the first overall pick for Bridgewater and now he lands at their feet in the 2nd round. Bridgewater can be a really good quarterback at the next level and his slide could be Houston’s gain.

 

2 (34). Washington Redskins: OT Morgan Moses, UVA

-The Redskins will likely look to trade back to stockpile some picks, but if they stay here Moses makes a fair amount of sense. He should be ready to start at right tackle for them, which should help improve the run blocking for Alfred Morris and give RGIII some more protection in the pocket.

 

3 (35). Cleveland Browns: WR Marquise Lee, USC

-The Browns land their complementary receiver to Josh Gordon with this pick, and they should be pretty happy with Lee falling in their lap.

 

4 (36). Oakland Raiders: QB Jimmy Garoppolo, Eastern Illinois

-The Raiders get their young quarterback here in Garoppolo. He gets to sit for a year behind Matt Schaub, which could allow him to develop into a quality starting option down the road.

 

5 (37). Atlanta Falcons: TE Jace Amaro, Texas Tech

-The Falcons need a lot of help on defense, but it will be tough to pass up a young tight end like Amaro to replace Tony Gonzalez.

 

6 (38). Tampa Bay Buccaneers: DE Scott Crichton, Oregon State

-The Buccaneers upgraded their pass rush in free agency, but they shouldn’t be done yet. Crichton gives them another guy who can get after the quarterback, and one that should offer pretty immediate impact.

 

7 (39). Jacksonville Jaguars: LB Ryan Shazier, Ohio State

-The Jaguars need to upgrade their defense and Shazier could be an interesting fit for Gus Bradley. He could play outside and be asked to blitz quite a bit in their system.

 

8 (40). Minnesota Vikings: QB Zach Mettenberger, LSU

-The Vikings land their quarterback here in Mettenberger and he figures to be a good fit for offensive coordinator Norv Turner.

 

9 (41). Buffalo Bills: OT Joel Bitonio, Nevada

-The Bills need help at right tackle and Bitonio looks capable of handling the position and starting early on. Bitonio also has the versatility to kick inside if necessary.

 

10 (42). Tennessee Titans: RB Tre Mason, Auburn

-The Titans parted ways with Chris Johnson and could look to find his replacement early in the draft. Mason had a great end to his college career and looks to be a work horse back.

 

11 (43). New York Giants: S Jimmie Ward, Northern Illinois

-The Giants could go either offensive line or defense with this pick. Given how thin the safety position is at the top, grabbing Ward here makes sense for New York to help boost a secondary that struggled last year.

 

12 (44). St. Louis Rams: WR Kelvin Benjamin, FSU

-The Rams are still looking for that star receiver and they may take a shot at Benjamin to fill that role. Benjamin is a raw talent, but if he can put it all together he could be a star.

 

13 (45). Detroit Lions: CB Jason Verrett, TCU

-The Lions need corner help and adding Verrett is a no brainer at this selection. He can play in the slot, but also has the talent to play outside as well.

 

14 (46). Pittsburgh Steelers: WR Allen Robinson, Penn State

-The Steelers could use some size and help at wide receiver and local product Allen Robinson fits both of those criteria. Robinson could be a nice complement to Antonio Brown, and would give the Steelers a nice receiver corps.

 

15 (47). Dallas Cowboys: DT Dominique Easley, Florida

-The Cowboys went defensive end in the first so look for them to add a defensive tackle in either the 2nd or the 3rd. With Easley on the board that should be the direction that they go as he’s a perfect fit for their Tampa Two defense.

 

16 (48). Baltimore Ravens: WR Davante Adams, Fresno State

-This isn’t a major need for 2014, but the Ravens could look to add a long term receiving complement to Torrey Smith. Adams has a nice combination of size and speed and if given a year or two to develop he could end up being a really nice starter down the road.

 

17 (49). New York Jets: TE Austin Seferian-Jenkins, Washington

-The Jets need to add more weapons than just one receiver to boost their offense, and it would make a lot of sense for them to come back in the 2nd round with Seferian-Jenkins if he’s available.

 

18 (50). Miami Dolphins: OT JaWuan James, Tennessee

-The Dolphins need to fix their line so look for a major investment into the unit. Using their top two picks on the position group makes a lot of sense.

 

19 (51). Chicago Bears: DT Will Sutton, Arizona State

-The Bears need to add a defensive tackle at this spot and Sutton is a guy who could be a nice fit. Sutton could thrive in the Bears system as a quality pass rushing defensive tackle.

 

20 (52). Arizona Cardinals: OLB DeMarcus Lawrence, Boise State

-For as good as the Cardinals defense has been in recent years, they really haven’t had strong pass rushing outside linebackers. Adding Lawrence could help fix that, and that could turn a strong defense into a great one.

 

21 (53). Green Bay Packers: CB/S LaMarcus Joyner, FSU

-The Packers need secondary help and could look at the hybrid corner/safety LaMarcus Joyner to fill their need. Green Bay will probably see him as more of a safety, but he could get consideration at corner as well.

 

22 (54). Philadelphia Eagles: WR Jordan Matthews, Vanderbilt-The Eagles seem to want to add another big receiver, and would be lucky to land Jordan Matthews here. Matthews is one of the most NFL ready receivers in this draft and could help the Eagles fill the gap left by DeSean Jackson.

 

23 (55). Cincinnati Bengals: RB Carlos Hyde, Ohio State

-The Bengals don’t have many pressing needs, so look for them to take a value pick here. They might have spent a 2nd on RB the year before, but Bernard isn’t an every-down back. He needs a power complement and that is where Hyde comes in. He can be the chain-mover, short yardage back, while Bernard comes in for the big play.

 

24 (56). San Francisco 49ers (from Kansas City Chiefs): DE Stephon Tuitt, Notre Dame

-The 49ers could go any number of directions, but the idea of adding Tuitt to their defensive line rotation is too good to pass up.

 

25 (57). San Diego Chargers: OG Gabe Jackson, Mississippi State

-The Chargers could use more help along their offensive line and grabbing Gabe Jackson should give them a guy who can start right away.

 

26 (58). New Orleans Saints: CB Phillip Gaines, Rice

-Phillip Gaines is climbing up draft boards and he could make a lot of sense to the Saints with this pick. He’s a talent corner who was overlooked at a smaller school.

 

27 (59). Indianapolis Colts: CB Marcus Roberson, Florida

-The Colts could possibly consider an offensive or defensive lineman with this pick, but I think this selection is about adding a piece to their secondary for a possible Patriots or Broncos match-up in the post season.

 

28 (60). Carolina Panthers: WR Donte Moncrief, Mississippi   

-The Panthers land their receiver with this pick and give Newton an interesting prospect with a nice combination of size and speed.
29 (61). San Francisco 49ers: LB Christian Jones, FSU

-The 49ers are bound to be intrigued by the versatile Jones, who can line up in a variety of spots. He could help replace Bowman if he’s not back from injury and he has the pass rush ability to help replace Aldon Smith during his inevitable suspension.

 

30 (62). New England Patriots: TE Troy Niklas, Notre Dame

-The Patriots need to upgrade their tight end position and grabbing an inline tight end option like Niklas makes a lot of sense. If Gronkowski is healthy he could be split out wide more in two tight end sets, or the Patriots could use both on the line giving them a favorable formation to run from.

 

31 (63). Denver Broncos:  DE Kareem Martin, UNC

-The Broncos did sign DeMarcus Ware, but they can’t be content that their defensive line is set at this point. Adding another talented piece in Martin would help ensure the Broncos have the depth and talent to make another Super Bowl run.

 

32 (64). Seattle Seahawks: G David Yankey, Stanford

-The Seahawks need help at guard and could look to David Yankey to fill their need there.

 

Round 3:

 

1 (65). Houston Texans: OT Cameron Fleming, Stanford

-The Texans could use help at right tackle and Fleming is a guy who could start right away.

 

2 (66). Washington Redskins: S Deone Buchanon, Washington

-Both of the Redskins starting safeties are signed to 1 year deals, so help is very much needed at this position. Buchanon could push for a starting job this year and has the potential to develop into a very good starter.

 

3 (67). Oakland Raiders: DE Trent Murphy, Stanford

-The Raiders added some nice free agent help to their defensive line this offseason, but all those players are on short term deals. Murphy would give the Raiders a quality defensive end for the future.

 

4 (68). Atlanta Falcons: OLB Carl Bradford, Arizona State

 

-The Falcons continue to bolster their defense here and land another nice player in OLB Carl Bradford.

 

5 (69). Tampa Bay Buccaneers: WR Martavis Bryant, Clemson

-The Buccaneers could double up on Clemson receivers in this draft. Watkins is obviously the star, but Bryant has a lot of upside as well. He’s a big more raw, but he could be a nice developmental 3rd receiver for the Bucs.

 

6 (70). Jacksonville Jaguars: OLB Trevor Reilly, Utah  

-The Jaguars would likely use Reilly in their Leo position where they like to generate a lot of their pass rush.

 

7 (71). Cleveland Browns: RB Ka’Deem Carey, Arizona

-Ben Tate was a nice free agent pick-up, but the Browns need to have a 2nd piece here. Carey is a nice option and has some potential of becoming a feature back himself.

 

8 (72). Minnesota Vikings: CB Stanley Jean-Baptiste, Nebraska

-The Vikings could use some additional corner help and they could look to the high upside Jean Baptiste as an option.

 

9 (73). Buffalo Bills: CB Bashaud Breeland, Clemson

-The Bills need further help in the secondary and could look at Breeland given his size and potential.

 

10 (74). New York Giants: DE Marcus Smith, Louisville

-The Giants pass rush situation isn’t as strong as it once was and they could look to add a guy in the early part of the draft.

 

11 (75). St. Louis Rams: DT Ego Ferguson, LSU

-The Rams have great defensive ends, but they could use some additional help at defensive tackle. Ferguson would probably be just a rotational guy to start, but he could team up with former LSU Tiger Michael Brockers down the road.

 

12 (76). Detroit Lions: C Weston Richburg, Colorado State

-The Lions need to find a center for the future and Richburg is considered one of the top centers in this draft.

 

13 (77). San Francisco 49ers (from Tennessee Titans): C Marcus Martin, USC

-The 49ers need to find some help at center if Daniel Kilgore isn’t up to the task for the starting role.

 

14 (78). Dallas Cowboys: S Terrance Brooks, FSU

-The Cowboys continue to upgrade their defense through this draft.

 

15 (79). Baltimore Ravens: RB Terrance West, Towson

-The Ravens need to start thinking about their future at running back. West is a local product who has a lot of potential.

 

16 (80). New York Jets: G Dakota Dozier, Furman

-The Jets need some help at guard and Dozier is a high upside option who may be able to push for a starting job.

 

17 (81). Miami Dolphins: RB Jeremy Hill, LSU

-The Dolphins need help at running back and they can’t rely on their current guys to be the answer this year. Hill has the potential to develop into a feature back down the road.

 

18 (82). Chicago Bears: DT DaQuan Jones, Penn State

-While Sutton was more of the 3 tech, pass rushing DT, Jones can be the run stuffer who occupies blockers.

 

19 (83). Cleveland Browns (from Pittsburgh Steelers): OT Billy Turner, North Dakota State

-The Browns could see Turner as a guy who could challenge for the right tackle spot now, and possible replace Joe Thomas in the future if necessary.

 

20 (84). Arizona Cardinals: ILB Chris Borland, Wisconsin

-The Cardinals could use help at inside linebacker, and Chris Borland is a guy who could push for a starting role as a rookie.

 

21 (85). Green Bay Packers: WR Paul Richardson, Colorado

-Receiver isn’t a pressing need for the Packers, but they are a team that typically looks to the future in this regard, and Cobb is entering his final year under his rookie contract.

 

22 (86). Philadelphia Eagles: OLB Jackson Jeffcoat, Texas

-The Eagles could use more pass rushing help and should look to add an option in this range.

 

23 (87). Kansas City Chiefs: CB Jaylen Watkins, Florida

-The Chiefs need help in the defensive backfield and considering they need to play Peyton Manning twice and Philip Rivers twice, this is not a position they can go cheap on.

 

24 (88). Cincinnati Bengals: WR Jared Abbrederis, Wisconsin  

-The Bengals have likely found their number two receiver in Marvin Jones, but they could use a reliable third option.

 

25 (89). San Diego Chargers: RB Andre Williams, Boston College

-Ryan Mathews had a good year last year, but teams need two running backs, and Woodhead is only a utility player. Williams could be a good back-up running back to Mathews.

 

26 (90). Indianapolis Colts: CB/S Keith McGill, Utah

-McGill could fit in either as a corner or a safety and with the Colts looking to add talent to their secondary.

 

27 (91). New Orleans Saints:  FS Dion Bailey, USC

-The Saints added Jarius Byrd, but they could use some safety depth. Bailey obviously won’t start, but he could get some work in certain sets and help on special teams.

 

28 (92). Carolina Panthers: OT Jack Mewhort, Ohio State

-The Panthers need to keep adding to their offensive line. Mewhort could be an option for RT or even inside at guard.

 

29 (93). New England Patriots: QB Tom Savage, Pittsburgh

-One of the biggest draft risers is Pitt QB Tom Savage. He’s got great size and could be a fit in New England since he could have a couple of years to develop.

 

30 (94). San Francisco 49ers: RB Bishop Sankey, Washington

-Frank Gore is getting up there in age so some help is needed here. Sankey could be the back-up for a year or two and then take over the starting role.

 

31 (95). Denver Broncos: CB Pierre Desir, Lindenwood

-The Broncos keep adding help on defense here and add a really intriguing piece in the small school Desir. He’s got great size and potential, and could develop nicely in this secondary.

 

32 (96). Minnesota Vikings (from Seattle Seahawks): WR Cody Latimer, Indiana  

-The Vikings could use some further receiver help and Latimer is a guy who is starting to climb draft boards.

 

33 (97). Pittsburgh Steelers (compensatory selection): DT Justin Ellis, LA Tech

-The Steelers could use a true nose tackle and Ellis is one of the best in the class.

 

34 (98). Green Bay Packers (compensatory selection): QB A.J. McCarron, Alabama

-The Packers re-signed Matt Flynn, but they can’t feel confident about the long term future behind Aaron Rodgers. McCarron could be a nice back-up option for the next couple of years.

 

35 (99). Baltimore Ravens (compensatory selection): LB/S Telvin Smith, FSU

-Smith is a tweener who could help at either linebacker or safety. In the end he will probably play a hybrid role and help on special teams.

 

36 (100). San Francisco 49ers (compensatory selection): WR Jarvis Landry, LSU

-The 49ers need some help at receiver and Landry is a nice pick-up here. He could go higher, but he didn’t have the best workout and it’s such a deep receiver class.

Round 4:

1 (101). Houston Texans: CB E.J. Gaines, Missouri

 

2 (102). Washington Redskins: C Travis Swanson, Arkansas

 

3 (103). Atlanta Falcons: OT Antonio Richardson, Tennessee

 

4 (104). New York Jets (from Tampa Bay Buccaneers): CB Rashaad Reynolds, Oregon State

 

5 (105). Jacksonville Jaguars: RB Lache Seastruck, Baylor

 

6 (106). Cleveland Browns: OG Cyril Richardson, Baylor

 

7 (107). Oakland Raiders: DT Kelcy Quarles, South Carolina

 

8 (108). Minnesota Vikings: LB Jordan Tripp, Montana

 

9 (109). Buffalo Bills: TE C.J. Fiedorowicz, Iowa

 

10 (110). St. Louis Rams: CB Victor Hampton, South Carolina

 

11 (111). Detroit Lions: DE Will Clarke, WVU

 

12 (112). Tennessee Titans: S Ed Reynolds, Stanford

 

13 (113). New York Giants: DE James Gayle, Virginia Tech

 

14 (114). Jacksonville Jaguars (from Baltimore Ravens): OT James Hurst, UNC

 

15 (115). New York Jets: OLB Chris Smith, Arkansas

 

16 (116). Miami Dolphins: DT Caraun Reid, Princeton

 

17 (117). Chicago Bears: WR Robert Herron, Wyoming  

 

18 (118). Pittsburgh Steelers: LB Shane Skov, Stanford

 

19 (119). Dallas Cowboys: WR Bruce Ellington, South Carolina

 

20 (120). Arizona Cardinals: DE George Uko, USC

 

21 (121). Green Bay Packers: ILB Jordan Zumwalt, UCLA

 

22 (122). Philadelphia Eagles: WR Josh Huff, Oregon  

 

23 (123). Cincinnati Bengals: LB Christian Kirksey, Iowa

 

24 (124). Kansas City Chiefs: WR Devin Street, Pittsburgh

 

25 (125). San Diego Chargers: WR Mike Davis, Texas

 

26 (126). New Orleans Saints: RB Devonta Freeman, FSU

 

27 (127). Cleveland Browns (from Indianapolis Colts): DT Anthony Johnson, LSU

 

28 (128). Carolina Panthers: CB Louchiez Purifoy, Florida

 

29 (129). San Francisco 49ers: RB Charles Sims, WVU

 

30 (130). New England Patriots: G Trai Turner, LSU

 

31 (131). Denver Broncos: S Craig Loston, LSU

 

32 (132). Seattle Seahawks: CB Walt Aikens, Liberty

 

33 (133). Detroit Lions (compensatory selection): CB Ross Cockrell, Duke

 

34 (134). Baltimore Ravens (compensatory selection): DE Josh Mauro, Stanford

 

35 (135). Houston Texans (compensatory selection): TE Arthur Lynch, Georgia

 

36 (136). Detroit Lions (compensatory selection): LB Adrian Hubbard, Alabama

 

37 (137). New York Jets (compensatory selection): WR T.J. Jones, Notre Dame

 

38 (138). Baltimore Ravens (compensatory selection): C Bryan Stork, FSU

 

39 (139). Atlanta Falcons (compensatory selection): RB Dri Archer, Kent State

 

40 (140). New England Patriots (compensatory selection): DT Daniel McCullers, Tennessee

Round 5:

 

1 (141). Houston Texans: RB James White, Wisconsin

 

2 (142). Washington Redskins: DE Brent Urban, UVA

 

3 (143). Tampa Bay Buccaneers: QB Aaron Murray, Georgia  

 

4 (144). Jacksonville Jaguars: OLB Devon Kennard, USC

 

5 (145). Cleveland Browns: ILB Max Bullough, Michigan State

 

6 (146). Seattle Seahawks (from Oakland Raiders): TE Xavier Grimble, USC

 

7 (147). Atlanta Falcons: S Kenny Ladler, Vanderbilt

 

8 (148). Minnesota Vikings: RB Storm Johnson, UCF

 

9 (149). Buffalo Bills: S Ahmad Dixon, Baylor

 

10 (150). Jacksonville Jaguars (from Detroit Lions): WR Michael Campanaro, Wake Forrest  

 

11 (151). Tennessee Titans: DE Taylor Hart, Oregon

 

12 (152). New York Giants: LB Khairi Fortt, California  

 

13 (153). St. Louis Rams: G Anthony Steen, Alabama

 

14 (154). New York Jets: ILB Yawin Smallwood, UConn

 

15 (155). Miami Dolphins: ILB Lamin Barrow, LSU

 

16 (156). Chicago Bears: S Brock Vereen, Minnesota

 

17 (157). Pittsburgh Steelers: CB Shaquille Richardson, Arizona

 

18 (158). Dallas Cowboys: DE Cassius Marsh, UCLA

 

19 (159). Jacksonville Jaguars (from Baltimore Ravens): OLB Howard Jones, Shepard

 

20 (160). Arizona Cardinals: S Dezmen Southward, Wisconsin

 

21 (161). Green Bay Packers: TE Jake Murphy, Utah

 

22 (162). Philadelphia Eagles: DE DeAndre Coleman, California

 

23 (163). Kansas City Chiefs: DE Ed Stinson, Alabama

 

24 (164). Cincinnati Bengals: WR Brandon Coleman, Rutgers

 

25 (165). San Diego Chargers: CB Chris Davis, Auburn

 

26 (166). Indianapolis Colts: G Jon Halapio, Florida

 

27 (167). New Orleans Saints: WR Ryan Grant, Tulane

 

28 (168). Carolina Panthers: CB Antone Exum, Virginia Tech

 

29 (169). New Orleans Saints (from New England Patriots through Philadelphia Eagles): DT Shamar Stephen, UConn

 

30 (170). San Francisco 49ers: CB Deion Belue, Alabama

 

31 (171). Denver Broncos: C Gabe Ikard, Oklahoma

 

32 (172). Seattle Seahawks: WR Kevin Norwood, Alabama

 

33 (173). Pittsburgh Steelers (compensatory selection): TE Crockett Gilmore, Colorado State

 

34 (174). New York Giants (compensatory selection): G Chris Watt, Notre Dame

 

35 (175). Baltimore Ravens (compensatory selection): TE Joe Don Duncan, Dixie State

 

36 (176). Green Bay Packers (compensatory selection): OLB Kevin Pierre-Louis, Boston College

Round 6:

1 (177). Houston Texans: OLB Ronald Powell, Florida

 

2 (178). Washington Redskins: WR Jeff Janis, Saginaw Valley State  

 

3 (179). Jacksonville Jaguars: CB Ricardo Allen, Purdue

 

4 (180). Cleveland Browns: FB Jay Prosch, Auburn

 

5 (181). Houston Texans (from Oakland Raiders): CB Aaron Colvin, Oklahoma

 

6 (182). Atlanta Falcons: CB Nevin Lawson, Utah State

 

7 (183). Chicago Bears (from Tampa Bay Buccaneers): RB Isaiah Crowell, Alabama State

 

8 (184). Minnesota Vikings: DE Ethan Westbrooks, West Texas A&M

 

9 (185). Buffalo Bills: QB Brett Smith, Wyoming

 

10 (186). Tennessee Titans: RB Tyler Gaffney, Stanford

 

11 (187). New York Giants: G/T Brandon Thomas, Clemson

 

12 (188). St. Louis Rams: DE Morgan Breslin, USC

 

13 (189). Detroit Lions: S Tre Boston, UNC

 

14 (190). Miami Dolphins: OT Justin Britt, Missouri

 

15 (191). Chicago Bears: QB Logan Thomas, Virginia Tech

 

16 (192). Pittsburgh Steelers: S Vinnie Sunseri, Alabama

 

17 (193). Kansas City Chiefs (from Dallas Cowboys): OT Charles Leno, Boise State

 

18 (194). Baltimore Ravens: RB De’Anthony Thomas, Oregon

 

19 (195). New York Jets: P Kirby Van Der Kamp, Iowa State

 

20 (196). Arizona Cardinals: RB Rajion Neal, Tennessee

 

21 (197). Green Bay Packers: CB Terrance Mitchell, Oregon

 

22 (198). New England Patriots (from Philadelphia Eagles): OLB Prince Shembo, Notre Dame

 

23 (199). Cincinnati Bengals: OT Seantrel Henderson, Miami

 

24 (200). Kansas City Chiefs: S Marqueston Huff, Wyoming

 

25 (201). San Diego Chargers: CB Dontae Johnson, North Carolina State

 

26 (202). New Orleans Saints: QB David Fales, San Jose State

 

27 (203). Indianapolis Colts: ILB Preston Brown, Louisville

 

28 (204). Carolina Panthers: WR Jalen Saunders, Oklahoma

 

29 (205). Jacksonville Jaguars (from San Francisco 49ers): DE Aaron Lynch, USF

 

30 (206). New England Patriots: TE Jacob Pedersen, Wisconsin

 

31 (207). Denver Broncos: DT Jay Bromley, Syracuse

 

32 (208). Seattle Seahawks: FB J.C. Copeland, LSU

 

33 (209). New York Jets (compensatory selection): OT Michael Schofield, Michigan

 

34 (210). New York Jets (compensatory selection): CB/S Jemea Thomas, Georgia Tech

 

35 (211). Houston Texans (compensatory selection): OG/C Russell Bodine, UNC

 

36 (212). Cincinnati Bengals (compensatory selection): DT Khyri Thornton, Southern Mississippi  

 

37 (213). New York Jets (compensatory selection): TE Colt Lyerla, Oregon

 

38 (214). St. Louis Rams (compensatory selection): OLB Denicos Allen, Michigan State

 

39 (215). Pittsburgh Steelers (compensatory selection): OLB Larry Webster, Bloomsburg

Round 7:

 

1 (216). Houston Texans: K Chris Boswell, Rice

 

2 (217). Washington Redskins: RB Marion Grice, Arizona State

 

3 (218). Cleveland Browns: P Tom Hornsey, Memphis  

 

4 (219). Oakland Raiders: WR John Brown, Pittsburg State

 

5 (220). Atlanta Falcons: RB Jerick McKinnon, Georgia Southern

 

6 (221). Tampa Bay Buccaneers: G Brandon Linder, Miami

 

7 (222). Jacksonville Jaguars: C Tyler Larsen, Utah State

 

8 (223). Minnesota Vikings: WR Cody Hoffman, BYU

 

9 (224). Buffalo Bills: OT Charles Siddoway, Mississippi State

 

10 (225). Carolina Panthers (from New York Giants): DE Michael Sam, Missouri

 

11 (226). St. Louis Rams: DT Zack Kerr, Delaware   

 

12 (227). Detroit Lions: WR Trey Burton, Florida

 

13 (228). Tennessee Titans: OT Matt Pachan, Boston College

 

14 (229). Dallas Cowboys (from Chicago Bears)

 

15 (230). Pittsburgh Steelers: G Wesley Johnson, Vanderbilt

 

16 (231). Dallas Cowboys: G Kadeem Edwards, Tennessee State

 

17 (232). Indianapolis Colts (from Baltimore Ravens): WR Tevin Reese, Baylor

 

18 (233). New York Jets: OT Kevin Graf, USC

 

19 (234). Miami Dolphins: WR Matt Hazel, Coastal Carolina

 

20 (235). Oakland Raiders (from Arizona Cardinals): RB Antonio Andrews, Western Kentucky

 

21 (236). Green Bay Packers: CB Bennett Jackson, Notre Dame

 

22 (237). Philadelphia Eagles: QB Connor Shaw, South Carolina

 

23 (238). Dallas Cowboys (from Kansas City Chiefs): CB Andre Hal, Vanderbilt

 

24 (239). Cincinnati Bengals: K Anthony Fera, Texas

 

25 (240). San Diego Chargers: TE Richard Rodgers, California  

 

26 (241). St. Louis Rams (from Indianapolis Colts): ILB DeDe Lattimore, South Florida

 

27 (242). San Francisco 49ers (from New Orleans Saints): WR L’Damien Washington, Missouri

 

28 (243). San Francisco 49ers (from Carolina Panthers): FB Ryan Hewitt, Stanford

 

29 (244). New England Patriots: OT Austin Wentworth, Fresno State

 

30 (245). San Francisco 49ers: DT Ryan Carrethers, Arkansas State

 

31 (246). Denver Broncos: G Ryan Groy, Wisconsin

 

32 (247). Seattle Seahawks: OLB Tyler Starr, South Dakota  

 

33 (248). Dallas Cowboys (compensatory selection): DE Kerry Wynn, Richmond

 

34 (249). St. Louis Rams (compensatory selection): OT Laurent Duvernay-Tardif, McGill

 

35 (250). St. Louis Rams (compensatory selection): QB Keith Wenning, Ball State

 

36 (251). Dallas Cowboys (compensatory selection): WR Austin Franklin, New Mexico State

 

37 (252). Cincinnati Bengals (compensatory selection): WR Bennie Fowler, Michigan State

 

38 (253). Atlanta Falcons (compensatory selection): OT Cornelius Lucas, Kansas State

 

39 (254). Dallas Cowboys (compensatory selection): QB Tajh Boyd, Clemson

 

40 (255). Atlanta Falcons (compensatory selection): DE Kasim Edebali, Boston College

 

41 (256). Houston Texans (compensatory selection): DE Jeoffrey Pagan, Alabama

 

 

Late Round Offensive Linemen to Watch

April 19, 2014 in Draft Reports

By: Justin Partlow

 

While the main focus of the 2014 draft class has been the top end of the OL class, the truth is that there is so much value in this OL class that will help many teams. The key thing to remember is teams will be helped not only with starting caliber talent, but also by adding quality depth that can go a long way in the development of a team. The key this year will be watching which teams look to take advantage of the OL class, and how each team goes about taking advantage of it. Below lets take a look at some later round players(day 3) who can make an impact in various ways in 2014.

 

James Hurst OT UNC

 

James Hurst was seen as one of the better OT prospects in the 2014 draft, until a broken leg has left him unable to really gain traction on his draft stock. While Hurst isn’t the greatest player or most athletic, what he does well is pass protect and allow for his QB to have a clean pocket for the most part. When you watch Hurst on film you notice how well he is at playing with proper technique, but at the same time he struggles when he plays against speed rushers. Because of that, I expect Hurst to move to RT in the NFL where he wont have to play against speed rushers, but more so against the power guys, where he can match up well against them. With the broken leg, Hurst has seen his stock drop only due to the rehab and wondering what happens, but if he’s healthy look for Hurst to become an early starter in 2014

 

Chris Watt OG Notre Dame

 

While not as highly heralded as his teammate Zack Martin, Chris Watt is the epitome of a “steady as he goes” type of OL. He may not be the strongest player on the field, or the fastest player, or even the most flashy player, but he just gets the job done and gets holes open for running backs and keeps his QB clean. What I really like about Watt is his ability to play with a mean streak and want to finish blocks. It’s always refreshing to see a player who wants to make it known with his presence instead of just making the block and stopping his effort there. Watt is someone who also provides possible scheme versatility as he can play OG in the NFL, but there is some chatter as to if he could play C and be more effective there. Watt has seen his stock settle in the 4th-5th round area, but at the same time he possesses the ability to start, depending on what team is able to develop him properly. Watt needs to work on his overall technique to succeed as he relies at times on his overall strength to make blocks. If Watt can refine his technique he could be a starter, but I also see someone who could provide great value as an interior reserve OL who can rotate between C and G.

 

Brandon Thomas OG Clemson

 

This name will come as a shock if you were reading this article about a week ago, but with Brandon Thomas out now with an ACL injury the question becomes if how long will Thomas stay on the board and will a team gamble on him to recover from the injury. Thomas before the injury was seen as a possible top 50 pick and someone who could start immediately at OG and be a top end player. Every time I watched Thomas on film I was impressed with his ability to pass protect as well as run block from the OT position and combining that with his project as an OG I saw someone who could be successful. The key to Thomas will be how his recovery processes is going, and what team will just take that gamble on him with the hopes of him being healthy and being a major contributor in 2015. Look for a team in the 5th to 6th round area take that gamble on Thomas and IR him for the year to recover and see if he can contribute in 2015.

On the Clock Big Board Update & Exciting Announcements!

April 18, 2014 in On The Clock

In just three weeks we'll be right in the thick of the 2014 NFL Draft! How exciting is that?!

So we just posted another Fanspeak Big Board update to On the Clock this morning. So mock your heart out! Remember you can upgrade to On the Clock Premium for JUST $4.95 to be able to do trades, re-rank big board, and more!

What is more? Well next week Fanspeak.com will release our 2014 NFL Draft Guide Online Magazine! Its better than ever this year with full magazine quality, we promise! Premium subscribers get a PREMIUM 2014 NFL Draft Guide with approximately 100 more pages of valuable content, so just another reason to upgrade for the price of a beverage!

Also, next week Fanspeak we'll add some more big boards to On the Clock to make it even more fun & interesting! Exciting stuff so stay tuned for Draft Guide launch & new big boards for On the Clock next week!

 

 

Phillip Gaines: A Closer Look at the Rice CB

April 16, 2014 in Draft Reports

By: Justin Partlow

 

Heading into 2013, there was a little buzz about Gaines as possible prospect, but after a very good 2013 season and subsequent film review, Phillip Gaines is now seen as one of the top CB’s available in this class. With his natural ability to cover well both in man as well as zone coverage, Gaines has shown the ability to transfer his skills into either scheme into the NFL. Teams will need to account for his medical history, along with the jump up in competition, but Phillip Gaines looks to be the real deal.

 

Technique:

When you pop on the film of Gaines, one thing stands out immediately on film, he just is able to cover and do so fluidly. What I really enjoy watching in Gaines on film is his ability to redirect and change his hips without much effort and be able to cover anyone in front of him. It almost seems as if the challenge of facing the top receiver brings out the best of Gaines, and he plays even at a higher level than is expected. Gaines does a very good job of using his hands in coverage in an effort to redirect his opponent off his routes. Phillip has a very good backpedal and is able to click and close very well because of how well his technique is already refined. With his ability to play with high-level technique, Gaines looks the part of someone who can play immediately in the NFL at a high level.

 

Run Defense:

With most CB’s, the idea of playing in run defense leads to not much effort being shown. With Gaines, the exact opposite mentality is shown on film and it leads to much more of an intriguing skillset due to his ability to want to be an all around player on the field. When you watch film of Gaines, you notice his ability to stick his nose into the play and make tackles. Gaines has very good tackling form and does a good job of wrapping up his opponent and not letting him go. Gaines will need to work on calming himself down and being a bit less aggressive as he still has a tendency to over-pursue in run defense and get out of position on cut back lanes. While not a major fix, it’ll just be more of a discipline fix that can be taught over time with Gaines.

 

Pass Coverage:

As highlighted earlier, the pass defense ability of Phillip Gaines will be what sets him apart from other prospects in the 2014 NFL Draft class. Phillip Gaines not only shows great ability to redirect and flip his hips, but his natural awareness and ball skills are that of an elite player. Multiple times on film, Gaines was able to read the eyes of the QB and jump and make a play on the ball. Gaines has an uncanny ability to be able to guess and figure out where exactly the quarterback is going to be throwing the ball before it happens in real time. Having that natural ability will lead to the pick six plays that are coveted in the NFL. With this natural ability to do that, Gaines will be seen as one of the better “playmakers” at CB because of the ability to make those game changing plays. Gaines does need to watch his physicality in pass coverage, as he has been seen still trying to be physical 10+ yards downfield.

 

Overall:

Phillip Gaines wasn’t a highly rated guy heading into the 2013 season, but with his very good year and the film of him showing a high-end player, he’s now seen as one of the better CB prospects. With his impressive ball skills and ability to cover the top receivers, Gaines will be seen as someone who can play immediately in the NFL and can continue to develop over time. Look for Gaines to come off the board early in the 3rd round, but could very well move into the 2nd if there is a run on CB’s earlier.

2014 NFL Draft Top Pass Rusher Breakdown

April 15, 2014 in Draft Reports, Uncategorized

Jadeveon Clowney

Guys like Jadeveon Clowney don't come around too often. I hadn't previously watched him before studying him for this piece, but I had certainly heard the hype. When you hear people calling him the best pass rushing prospect of all time, you get a certain image in your head of what to expect. But in reality, he's a much more well-rounded player than I could have ever expected. He was almost more dominant against the run than he was rushing the passer.

run d 1a

Clowney lines up over the tight end, but he's going to cut back inside to the B gap between the left tackle and left guard.

run d 1b

He cuts across the face of the tackle so quickly that he's past him before the ball has even been handed off.

run d 1c

Clowney meets the running back head on moments after he's received the hand off.

Clowney spent the majority of his time in the backfield in every game I watched. Nobody was able to block him against the run, some even tried leaving him unblocked and running read option at him.

RO 1a

Clowney is in a similar position, lined up outside the left tackle.

RO 1b

But Clowney is so quick off the snap that he closes the gap between himself and the mesh point before the quarterback has a chance to properly read him.

RO 1c

Clowney attacks the running back, which would normally indicate a keep read for the quarterback, but Clowney is there so quickly that he doesn't have a chance to pull the ball away from the running back without risking a fumble.

RO 1d

The ball looses control of the ball as he's brought to the ground by Clowney, but the officials judged it to be a deliberate forward pass that fell incomplete.

Clowney's film is full of plays just like these that don't show up on the stat-sheet. While he didn't register many sacks this year, he still had a huge impact on the game. Offensive coordinators were forced to game plan around him. They tried to run the ball away from Clowney and then left a tight end or running back (sometimes both) in to chip and help the left tackle block him. Even then, Clowney would provide legitimate pressure that would force the quarterback to scramble away from him or check the ball down before he would have liked to.

He's a truly unique prospect that is rarely available. For me, he is the best player in this draft by far. Only the need for a quarterback should stop the Texans drafting Clowney number one overall. While he might not fit Romeo Crennel's 3-4 scheme perfectly, they'd find a way to make it work. He's much to talented a prospect to pass on because he might not be an ideal fit for your current scheme.

Khalil Mack

Mack is one of the more versatile players in this draft class. He's probably best suited to the 3-4 outside linebacker position, but could play a hybrid outside linebacker/defensive end in the 4-3 in a Von Miller-type role.

Mack offers a variety of pass rushing moves with an arsenal consisting of speed rushes, bull rushes and inside counter moves.

bull 1a

Here, Mack lines up outside the left tackle.

bull 1b

Mack explodes up and into the left tackle, getting underneath him and driving him back. Notice the hand placement from Mack, who gets inside leverage.

bull 1c

Mack drives the tackle back towards the quarterback, who feels the pressure and starts to scramble. Mack stays alert and begins disengaging his block. He spots the quarterback motioning to throw and gets his hand out in the passing lane. The quarterback ends up being forced to throw the ball away thanks to Mack's pressure. It seems like a simple thing, but it shows good awareness from a position that is often all about getting after the quarterback and racking up sack numbers.

Match ups are key in today's NFL. The best pass rushers can line up from either side and get after the quarterback. Mack showed that he can be just as effective rushing from the right side of the line.

right rush 1a

Once again, we can see how Mack gets his hands inside those of the right tackle, giving him all the leverage.

right rush 1b

Mack gets the most out of that leverage, driving the tackle back and keeping him at arms length.

right rush 1c

The quarterback is forced to step up into the pocket after his right tackle was driven back into him. Mack is able to get off the block quickly and pounce inside to register the sack.

Awareness is easily Mack's most attractive quality. He's very aware of what the offense is trying to do and what position he needs to be in to make a play, which isn't always all about rushing the passer.

int 1a

Here, the left tackle attempts to cut-block Mack, clearing the throwing lane for the quarterback to throw a bubble screen. A lot of pass rushers would be caught off-guard by this play as their sole focus is on sacking the quarterback. But Mack sees the cut-block coming, gets his hands on the back of the tackle and his eyes on the quarterback..

int 1b

Mack is able to see the pass the entire way into his hands, making for an easy interception.

int 1c

Mack then outruns both the quarterback and the wide receiver as he takes the interception all the way back for a touchdown.

It's easy to see why Mack has been touted as a top five pick for quite some time now. He's an athletic, versatile weapon that every defensive coordinator would love to have. I'm not sure he'll develop into a 15+ sack per season guy, but I think he could easily average 10-12 and be a much more well-rounded player.

Anthony Barr

Barr stands out as a physical specimen from the moment you see him. At 6'5”, 255 points, Barr is the ideal size for a 3-4 outside linebacker. He displays exceptional burst and closing speed, as well as being a fluid athlete. However, having only recently converted to the outside linebacker position, he is extremely raw when it comes to technique and the intricacies of playing the position.

The reason he's rated so high is because of his athleticism and ability to rush the passer. One thing he can definitely do is run the arc and beat a tackle around the outside with pure speed.

arc 1a

Here, Barr lines up over the left tackle in a two-point stance.

arc 1b

You can see Barr's long reach here as he engages the tackle, keeping him at a distance where he can't land his hands on Barr's body.

arc 1c

Barr gets to the corner too quickly, forcing the tackle to reach and grab for anything he can. He ends up grabbing Barr's facemask, but gets away without the penalty call.

arc 1d

Barr has no problems breaking free of the tackle as he turns the corner in pursuit of the quarterback.

arc 1e

Barr then does an excellent job of getting his hand on the football and stripping it loose.

But outside of running the arc, Barr is very raw as a pass rusher and as a defender. He lacks a variety of effective pass rush moves, which means a tackle can commit to the speed rush without having to worry about him coming back inside.

spin 1a

On this play, Barr attempts a spin move.

spin 1b

He takes the tackle outside, as he would on a speed rush, creating a gap inside between the tackle and guard.

spin 1c

Barr begins to spin back inside.

spin 1d

But coming out of the spin, he doesn't work back inside. Instead, he finds himself in front of the tackle in a similar position to the one he was in before he attempted the spin move.

spin 1e

Barr doesn't have a back up plan and ends up being easily blocked. There's no point in performing the spin move without using it to get back inside. Otherwise it just slows down the rush and makes it easier to block. But the fact he used it shows he is willing to try other moves.

Barr is very much a developmental project at this point, but his physical attributes are rare. He is unreliable against the run and untested dropping into coverage. He has the athletic ability to do both at a high level, but having only played defense for two years, he has a lot of catching up to do. Teams would be wise to follow the career path of Aldon Smith, who was taken seventh overall by the 49ers. They used him as a pass rush specialist while he developed, which allowed him to see time on the field and use his best qualities while hiding his short comings.

2014 Quarterback Breakdown

April 14, 2014 in Draft Reports

Teddy Bridgewater

I have Teddy Bridgewater as my top quarterback in this class. He might not have the 'wow' factor that a Johnny Manziel brings to the table, but he does a lot of the overlooked things very well. Playing in a pro-style system has benefited him greatly. I saw him on numerous occasions walk up to the line, change the protection or the play, something which plenty of NFL quarterbacks struggle with.

great play 1a

This play was a fantastic all-round play from Bridgewater that could easily get overlooked. He walks up to the line and changes the protection based on his read on the defense.

great play 1b

His offensive line adjust and pick up the blitz, but his right tackle is struggling to contain the block on the edge. Bridgewater calmly and almost causally takes a few steps to his right to avoid the rusher.

great play 1c

The entire time, Bridgewater keeps his eyes downfield on his targets, making progressions. He could have easily just taken off running for the first down marker here, but instead spots a receiver running open downfield.

great play 1d

He effortlessly throws an accurate pass 20 yards downfield while on the run, hitting his target in stride for a first down and a big gain.

Throwing on the run is something Bridgewater was asked to do plenty of in college. One of the tougher throws for a quarterback to make is while running to their left.

boot left 1a

Here, Bridgewater is running a play-action bootleg to his left.

boot left 1b

He gets his head around quickly coming out of the fake and starts to make his reads.

boot left 1c

This can be an incredibly ackward throw, but Bridgewater makes it look easy. He squares his shoulders to the target, gets his feet positioned correctly and calmly makes the throw.

boot left 1d

The accuracy is perfect from Bridgewater, hitting his receiver right between the numbers for an easy catch and another first down.

Plays like that are extremely common in the NFL, particularly in west coast offenses, which suit Bridgewater's strengths best. Being able to make those kind of plays help keep the offense moving and stop the defense to overcommitting to the run. Teams that have a strong running attack already in place will like what Bridgewater brings to the table.

One of the few knocks I do have on Bridgewater is his deep ball. I don't think he has a huge issue with arm strength, as he displays plenty of velocity when he needs it. I think he can misjudge just how much he needs to put on the ball and where he needs to be placing it when throwing deep.

deep ball 1a

On this play, Bridgewater looks to throw a deep ball to his left.

deep ball 1b

His receiver has a good yard or two on the corner, with the safety struggling to make up ground as well. A good throw here and the receiver potentially has a touchdown.

deep ball 1c

But Bridgewater doesn't put enough on the pass, forcing the receiver to stop and come back to the ball.

deep ball 1d

That allows the corner to make up ground and break up the pass.

The deep ball is something Bridgewater is going to need to work on. He's more suited to working a west coast system based on short and intermediate passes that move the chains. But he'll need to prove he can hit the homer run ball when he needs to, otherwise defenses will play their safeties closer to the line of scrimmage and make the underneath throwing windows a lot tighter for Bridgewater.

Overall though, I still see Bridgewater as the best quarterback in this class. He's much further along in his development than any of the other top quarterbacks, which is partially down to the system he played in at Louisville. The team that drafts him can be happy knowing that he's ready to slot in and start from day one.

Johnny Manziel

Manziel is easily the most debated name in this years NFL draft. He's the prototypical boom or bust prospect. He a complete wildcard in team evaluations. Some teams will think he has too many problems to overcome, while others will think they can maximize his upside.

I see two main problems with Manziel's game; his footwork and his running instincts. Lets start with the footwork, which at times is almost non-existent.

bad throw 1a

Here Manziel is given a clean pocket. He has a receiver crossing over the middle of the field.

bad throw 1b

Without any real threat of being hit, Manziel fails to set his feet and throws off his backfoot, almost jumping to throw the ball.

bad throw 1c

That makes it hard for Manziel to get much velocity on the throw. It dies on him and the receiver has to reach down and practically pick it up off the floor to make the catch.

That was a wide open throw that you'd expect every quarterback to make easily, but because Manziel fails to set his feet correctly, he nearly misses it. But some coaches may believe they can fix that footwork. Manziel has shown that he can get the job done despite having poor mechanics.

Good throw 1a

On this play, Manziel will end up throwing the deep go route to his left.

Good throw 1b

But he starts by looking to his right and reading the defense. He then looks down the middle to check the safeties.

Good throw 1c

Before progresses to his left and pulls the trigger. You can see in this throw, he's still leaning back, not properly transferring his weight over his front foot.

Good throw 1d

But he still manages to place the ball perfectly on the back shoulder of his receiver, where only the receiver can make the play.

Manziel has taught himself to get by without the correct footwork. But without it, his passes can look very floaty and not have much velocity on them, or can die on him and fall short of the receiver like we saw above. If a quarterback guru (say, Texans Head Coach Bill O'Brien) thinks he can fix the footwork, then Manziel becomes a lot more attractive to that team.

The other main problem I have with Manziel is also partially what makes him such a unique prospect; his running instincts. Watch any Manziel highlights package and you'll see play after play of Manziel running all over the place, avoiding defenders and making big plays with his legs. Making plays with his legs aren't a problem. The fact he's able to elude defenders and buy more time is actually a huge positive. But what he can't allow to happen is what happened on this next play.

instincts 1a

Manziel is given a clean pocket to work with on this play. He's under no real pressure and has time to work through his progressions.

instincts 1c

Manziel doesn't see any receivers open, so takes off running. The defense actually have a man set to spy Manziel and come up to tackle him should he start running. Manziel makes a cut similar to that of a running back to completely elude the defender and runs into the open field.

instincts 1d

Manziel manages to avoid more defenders before he eventually steps out of bounds for a nice gain. A solid result on the play. However, if we look back at the point he started to take off.

instincts 1b

He had a receiver running wide open right past the deep safety. Manziel had no pressure on him in the pocket. If he had stayed in the pocket a fraction longer, he might have seen the receiver running open and had a potential touchdown. But instead, he took off running and missed the open receiver.

This is what Manziel can't allow to happen. The scrambling ability is a huge positive to his game, but only if he's not missing open receivers as a result of it. Coaches will be conflicted with this. They won't want to completely take away the running ability that makes him unique, but they can't have him missing open receivers down field.

This is what makes Manziel so difficult to evaluate; and what makes him a boom or bust prospect. He has the highest ceiling of any quarterback in the draft, but also the highest bust potential. He'll need a good coaching set up that will work on his fundamentals and work a system to fit his talents.

Blake Bortles

To me, Bortles was one of the more disappointing players I have watched this offseason. Bortles has seen plenty of hype, touted as the potential number one pick, but I didn't see anything that made me believe that hype. To his credit, he is very aware of what's going on around him in the pocket and displays good pocket mobility to avoid rushers and help his offensive lineman recover on blocks.

good in pocket 1a

On this play, South Carolina move Jadeveon Clowney inside over the right guard. They run a stunt with a blitzer coming in behind Clowney. At the same time, the left tackle is having to deal with a speed rush off the edge. All of this is happening before Bortles even reaches the top of his drop.

good in pocket 1b

But Bortles doesn't panic and start running around. He remains poised and works his way out of the pocket to elude the oncoming rushers.

good in pocket 1c

Bortles keeps his eyes downfield, finding a target. He does a nice job squaring his shoulders to his target and making the throw.

good in pocket 1d

Which is completed for a first down. This is Bortles best trait. He's very good at keeping poised and moving in the pocket to keep plays alive while still keeping his eyes down the field instead of on the rushers. He has a very good feel for the pocket, which isn't something that a lot of college quarterbacks have.

However, that trait alone doesn't make a prospect worth a top 10 pick. Outside of that, I was very underwhelmed. The scheme he played in wasn't one that showed off a quarterback ability; it involved a lot of read-option and triple-option plays, as well as bubble screens. It was rare to see Bortles throw the ball down the field. When he did, he had issues with accuracy and bad decisions.

bad int 1a

On this play, Bortles has a receiver running a skinny post route against a corner playing off.

bad int 1b

As Bortles begins his throwing motion, the corner has already started to jump the route. Bortles is looking straight at receiver, but elects to throw the ball anyway.

bad int 1c

The defender is easily able to jump in front of the receiver and intercept the pass. Bortles either didn't see the defender breaking on the ball, or felt that he could fit the ball in to a window that was shut. Either way, the outcome was a bad interception.

Bortles is a raw prospect in my opinion. He has some qualities that are difficult to teach; poise, pocket awareness and mobility to name a few. But he has a lot to work on and develop to be a consistent NFL starting quarterback. While he's been touted as a top 10 pick, I would feel much better about him in the mid 20s range to a team trading back up into the end of the first round for a quarterback.