These are players that I expect to be taken Day 3. I truly feel that this where teams that truly understand how to use the draft can “lap the field” by getting great value here. Here’s my top 10 by position group.
- Bobby McCain, Memphis- McCain is a real bargain; if he were 6’0” and played in the SEC he’d likely have gone in the middle of the 2nd But he’s 5’9.5″ 195 and has not been seen as widely as his talent should demand, think Brent Grimes or Fred Smoot.
- Tray Walker Texas So.- At 6’2 1/8” 191 He has a great frame, he’s a good tackler and is a good if not great athlete.
- Doran Grant, Ohio State- He’s a very good athlete and the arrow is pointed up for him as a player, he can play the run well also.
- Ifo Ekpre-Olomu, Oregon- He’s nimble with solid ball-skills but there were concerns about how he’d hold up at the next level even before tearing his ACL, a knee injury suffered before the Rose Bowl, is now being called worse than what was originally reported. Most likely, he will start his rookie season on the PUP list. But Ekpre-Olomu is a natural CB with above-average football IQ.
- Kevin White, TCU- Another feisty mini-CB who can cover slots and has some swagger.
- Travis Lee, Stillman- He’s undersized at 5’10” 172 but super-fluid and has good recovery burst.
- Jacoby Glenn, UCF- Jacoby Glenn, CB, Central Florida: A very raw red-shirt Sophomore, he has good hips and ball-skills.
- J’Ron Erby, Wayne State (NE)- He has length, he’s very athletic and reads routes very well.
- Justin Coleman, Tennessee- Coleman is likely a future slot CB in the NFL
- CB SaQwan Edwards, New Mexico- He likely won’t be drafted due to off-the-field concerns, but he’s a big and tough Cover-2 type CB.
- Grady Jarrett, DT, Clemson- If he were just a bit bigger he’s have been long gone, but at 6’0 ¾ “ 304 he had 33 bench reps at his pro day, 5.06 40, 31 vertical, 9’5” broad jump, 7.37 3-cone, still his tape is even better than his impressive testing numbers, he’s a beast who will produce as a 3-Technique.
- Michael Bennett, DE, Ohio State- A tweener who can play a few spots along the line, he’s a player who runs “hot and cold” but if he puts it all together he can be an interior perpetrator.
- Trey Flowers, DE, Arkansas: He’s a stalwart in the Razorbacks’ defense who plays with power, is long-armed, strong and has superior pass-rush technique at 6’2 1/8″ 266 with 34 1/2” arms his 4.93 combine 40 and 4.83 at his pro day 40 are balanced by his 36 1/2” vertical and 10’1″ broad jumps.
- Travis Raciti, San Jose St.: He’s just a tough, “old-school” 5 Technique. He’s an 8-10 year pro.
- Kristjan Sokoli, DT, Buffalo Sokoli ran 4.86, 38″ VL, 9′ 11″ broad, 7.25 3 cone, and 31 bench reps. A total freak but very raw.
- Marcus Hardison, DE/DT, Arizona State: He seems he’s versatile enough to line-up at the 1, 3, 5, or 4[I] on a defensive line. Commonly, he was aligned outside of the RT in ASU’s 4-3 defense,
- Leon Orr, UF, DT A huge football character ‘red flag’ 6’4 7/8” 323 but I’d steer clear of him, but he stood out at NFLPA Bowl practices.
- Lynden Trail, Norfolk State: A big and versatile Florida transfer has played standing up, a little bit of TE, he’s super-long at 6’6 5/8“269 with 34 7/8” arms, but his 4.96 in the 40 hurt him but he was faster at his pro day. Some speculate that Trail can put on 23-35 pounds and perhaps play “5 Technique.” There was also talk of him playing TE, and he even ran some routes during the Senior Bowl.
- Travis Raciti, San Jose State: He’s just a tough, “old-school” 5 Technique. He’s an 8-10 year pro.
- Caushad Lyons, Tusculum: A big and athletic small-schooler at 6-4½ 284 with a 4.87 40, 10’00” broad jump, he needs to get stronger but he has all the components you want in a “5-Technique.
Special Note: 10. Leon Orr, UF, DT A huge football character ‘red flag’ 6’4 7/8” 323 but I’d steer clear of him, but he stood out at NFLPA Bowl practices.
- Davis Tull, UTC- He’s is a freak athlete, he’s the “White Vic Beasley 4.53 40 at his pro day an posted a 42 vertical and an 11 foot broad jump despite a hamstring that was slightly pulled, he plays very hard and he can play the run and the pass.
- Shaq Riddick, /OLB WVU by the way of Gardner-Webb DE WVU This hybrid player from WVU by the way of Gardner-Webb is like Gregory but is more powerful and might be a HUGE steal mid-day 3.
- Obum Gwachum, DE/OLB, Oregon State- He’s former WR and was a great High Jumper with 7’1” he can rush the passer. He’s not very powerful or polished, but he’s intriguing.
- Zach Wagenmann, DE/OLB Montana- He’s an ultra-high character player and knows how to “close the deal”
- Ryan Russell, DE/OLB Purdue- A rather unrefined but talented pass-rusher who is a “Poor Man’s” Bud Dupree.
- Brock Hekking, DE/OLB Nevada- The flamboyant hair and motor are impressive but he is not special in any other areas.
- Ryan Delaire, DE/OLB Towson- He’s a long and quick player he’s been very productive he lacks a little speed.
- DE/OLB Matt Longacre Northwest Missouri State 6’3 ½” 260. He’s a really consistent player and a good athlete.
- Jermauria Rasco DE/OLB LSU- He’s a bit of “fool’s gold” he has some potential but he lacks work-ethic and strength.
- Nick Seither, DE/OLB Georgetown- A “Super-Sleeper” he has a thick frame at 6’2¾” 273 and there is some Lamarr Woodley to him.
- Taiwan Jones, Michigan State- I think he can be a starter, he’s big, strong and long with a chance to be special if he speeds up the mental side of his game.
- Marcus Rush, Michigan State- Rush is a very good athlete and could play any LB position in any scheme, sleeper.
- Ben Heaney, Kansas- How Heaney is not more respected I’ll never know, he’ll make a team and contribute.
- Terrence Plummer, UCF- A very instinctive and intelligent LB.
- Zach Vigil, Utah, State- Underrated athlete who will be good on special teams and might be future starter.
- Jeff Luc, Cincinnati- A super strong thumper who can hold up in coverage, some like him at FB.
- Martrell Spaight, Arkansas- Nickel LB or run and chase WLB type.
- Mike Hull, Penn State- A classic Penn State LB, smart and rugged, a bit limited.
- Hayes Pullard, USC- See Mike Hull, but a bit more versatile, his best fit may be SILB in a 3-4.
- Jake Ryan, Michigan- Another prospect who’s better than most seem to realize, he can play in a 3-4 or 4-3.
- C BJ Finney Kansas State- Smart, a good athlete and he can start.
- C Greg Mancz, Toledo- A tall C with some bendiness, he has had some injury concerns
- C Nick Easton, Harvard- He is 6’2 ¾” 303 and is quite a good athlete, I think he sticks somewhere.
- OG Jamil Douglas, Arizona State- He can play RT in a pinch, he can anchor and is a bit like Jordan Mills.
- OG Jarvis Harrison, Texas A&M- Another massive dump-truck of a man with decent feet.
- Quinton Spain, West Virginia- A “phone-booth” player with a mean streak.
- OT/OG Jeremiah Poutasi, Utah- RT who projects inside to guard, he’s big and powerful.
- Rob Crisp, NC State- He’s a guy who will hang around as a swing tackle for many years.
- OT Laurence Gibson, VPI- Gibson has the dimensions and VA Tech pedigree to remind one of Duane Brown but he lacks both the change-of-direction skills and core strength that make Brown elite, still he’s an intriguing swing tackle prospect.
- Kevin Whimpey, Utah State- He is a big dude and super-strong, 39 reps at 225 a prototypical RT type rather like Eric Winston, but more raw.
- Brett Hundley, UCLA: He is a darker and is like a more athletic Ryan Fitzpatrick, but he has starter potential and in this draft class that’s saying something.
- Bryce Petty, Baylor: He’s an underrated athlete who makes gorgeous “bucket throws” but he has a big mental hurdle to clear.
- Connor Halliday, WSU: The lanky passer has the best arm of any Leach QB and he’s super brave.
- Chris Bonner- Big bodied and big armed, a “working-class man’s Osweiler.”
- Garrett Safron: A Jeff Garcia-type who may one day start, but like Garcia may have to head North.
- Cody Fajardo, Nevada: Yet another quick-footed WCO offense type QB in the Andy Dalton mold, good at most things, great at nothing.
- Rakeem Cato, Marshall: He lost the weigh-in at 6’0 1/8”178 he might end up in the CFL but he’s a player.
- Anthony Boone: Tajh Boyd 2.0. He’s thick-bodied and very strong, but has never been consistent in ball-placement.
- Kevin Rodgers, Henderson State- He’s a good fit in a West Coast offense and has some upside.
- Taylor Heinicke, ODU: Undersized, quick-footed with a so-so arm but smart and scrappy.
- Mike Davis, S. Carolina- A Doug Martin-type compact back with power and quickness.
- Jeremy Langford, Michigan State- A RB with a real chance to make an impact in a RB rotation.
- Buck Allen, USC- He is a player who can become a main runner in the right system.
- Jay Ajayi, Boise State- If his knee was more solid he’d be gone day 2. He is a bit like Marion Barber.
- Terrell Watson, Azusa Pacific- A power back with sweet feet, he’ll be good.
- David Cobb, Minnesota- He did not test well and like many other great backs his vision, balance and power make up for poor straight-line speed.
- Cameron Artis-Payne, Auburn- This is another guy with starter traits, he’ll likely have to grow into the role. He is similar to Zac Stacy.
- Josh Robinson, Mississippi- The “Human Bowling Ball” at 5’7 7/8” 217 he’s nearly impossible to square up and he has rare contact balance.
- Malcolm Brown, Texas- A top HS recruit, a combination of injuries and depth at the spot kept him from ever becoming a star, he’s a slower Laurence Maroney to me.
- Trey Williams, Texas A&M- Darren Sproles is always invoked and he shares the size and quickness but is less powerful and instinctive.
- RB Akeem Hunt, Purdue- At 5’9 ¾ 189 he timed between 4.38-4.41 at his pro day, he is quick and explosive with real punt return ability.
- Justin Hardy, WR, Eastern Carolina- He is such a true technician, I see a Keenan McCardell type of long-term Z WR.
- Jamison Crowder is going to outperform several of the WRs taken ahead of him. He will be a solid slot player quickly.
- Stefon Diggs, WR, Maryland- He’s similar to Steadman Bailey, but even faster.
4. Rashad Greene, WR, Florida State-
- Adrian Coxson, Towson- This is another tremendously underrated player with speed, power and solid technique.
- DeAndre Carter, WR, Sacramento State- He is another very quick slot type, he’s fearless and he is good after the catch.
- Dres Anderson, WR, Utah- He’s the son of “Flipper” he’s like Hardy in that he’s polished but not super-athletic.
- Dez Lewis, WR C. Arkansas- A big and athletic player who is able to create separation and his good ball-tracking skills.
- Antwan Goodley , WR, Baylor- He is a freakishly athletic, built like a 3rd down RB and has squatted 660 pounds, but he at times has struggled to pluck the ball.
- Mario Alford, WR, WVU- He’s one of the top 5 fastest players in the draft, he has return pop as well.
- Deontay Greenberry, WR, Houston- I was shocked when he wasn’t invited to the Combine, he has size, he high-points the ball and fights well for contested balls.