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  • Mike Mayock's Updated Top 32 Big Board

    Defensive line leads the way on list of top 32 prospects
    By Mike Mayock NFL Network
    Published: March 11, 2011 at 11:06 a.m.

    Let's get one thing clear. This is not a mock draft. This is a list of the best 32 players in the 2011 NFL Draft.

    You're going to see that 20 of my 32 players are defensive players, 14 defensive linemen. That's not going to happen in the first round. But these are the guys I'll bang the table for, and here's why:

    1. Marcell Dareus*, DT, Alabama
    This is my favorite player in the country this year. He has tremendous foot speed for a player his size. He can play the nose, the three-technique and showed he can play the five-technique. From my perspective, I don't think he can possibly get past Denver at No. 2.

    2. Von Miller, OLB, Texas A&M
    He's a special guy off the edge and reminds me an awful lot of DeMarcus Ware that way. However, he's not as big, so therefore won't generate quite as much power.

    3. Patrick Peterson, CB, LSU
    A lot of people think he might be the best player in this draft, and he might be. He has the return skills of a man 40 pounds smaller than he is. He has the ability to move, to press, to play off. He's a little tight in the hips, but I don't care. He's a great football player.

    4. A.J. Green*, WR, Georgia
    Oh my goodness. If you have any questions about this kid, after being suspended the first four games last season, he came out in week five against two future NFL cornerbacks against Colorado and had seven catches for more than 100 yards. That includes one of the best back-of-shoulder catches I've ever seen in my life.

    5. Blaine Gabbert*, QB, Missouri
    He's my No. 1 quarterback. He comes out of a spread offense, and his footwork needs to improve, but he has all the rest. He's athletic, has a big arm, loves the game of football, has anticipation to throw into small windows, and the accuracy to back it up. He could be the first guy off the board.

    6. Robert Quinn*, DE, North Carolina
    He's a one-year wonder because of his NCAA suspension. I think from an edge-rush perspective, he might be the best guy in the draft.

    7. Julio Jones, WR, Alabama
    He's a warrior. He ran 4.39 at the combine, but on tape I think he plays more like a 4.5 guy. That's what I think he plays at, and that's fine. His throwing radius, ability to run and ability to catch are phenomenal.

    8. Nick Fairley, DT, Auburn
    To me he's a lightning rod. I was at his pro day workout, and from a foot-speed perspective, it doesn't get much better than what he can do. He ran through the bag drills, and it was ridiculous. However, he's a boom-or-bust guy. Right now, I have him here, but he's got more talent than that. Depending on what type of kid he is, I could have him dropping out of the first round entirely.

    9. Prince Amukamara, CB, Nebraska
    This kid is a gifted cornerback who can play press and can play off. Watch the game tape against Oklahoma State and Justin Blackmon, maybe the best one or two receivers in college last season, because there are some misnomers. The kid played a lot better than people give him credit for.

    10. Da'Quan Bowers*, DE, Clemson
    I boxed him in here for a reason. He has more ability than No. 10, but he's a one-year wonder. He had 15.5 sacks last season, and the two years before that he only had four combined. I want to know why.

    11. Anthony Castonzo, OL, Boston College
    I really believe he or (Tyron) Smith are the first tackle off the board. He's a tough guy in the run game, he has great feet as a former tight end. I love his upside, and he had a great week of Senior Bowl practice, although he didn't play quite as well in the game.

    12. J.J. Watt*, DE, Wisconsin
    I believe this kid is the real deal. He's another prototype of a five-technique, a defensive end in a 3-4 scheme. If you don't like him, put the TCU game tape on. The numbers weren't big, but the kid dominated.

    13. Tyron Smith*, OT, USC
    He played on the right side and came out as a junior, and has the most potential of any tackle in the draft.

    14. Aldon Smith*, DE, Missouri
    This young man has so much potential, it's scary. Put the 2009 game tape on against Russell Okung and Danny Watkins and you'll get a better view of what he can do. He played through a lot of pain last season.

    15. Cameron Jordan, DE, California
    He brings scheme-versatility. I think he's an ideal defensive end in a 3-4, but can kick inside and overwhelm guards too. He can even play out on the edge.

    16. Mark Ingram*, RB, Alabama
    This is one of the angriest runners I've ever seen. He's a three-down back. This is a kid who can play 16 games and want to play more. He can pass protect, catch the football, and has tremendous balance and vision.

    17. Ryan Kerrigan, DE, Purdue
    Had 33 sacks, 14 forced fumbles. With this kid, you know what you're getting. You know what your floor is, and he might not have the same upside as some of these other kids. But I think he can play defensive end or stand up and be an outside linebacker.

    18. Muhammad Wilkerson*, DT, Temple
    He can play the 5-technique, and he can get kicked inside. He reminds me of Trevor Pryce.

    19. Gabe Carimi, OL, Wisconsin
    I think the kid is a plug-and-play right tackle. Throw him in there and he's a starter on day one. And he's a starter for the next 10 years. He's got a little attitude and there's something tough about him. He's a good football player.

    20. Jake Locker, QB, Washington
    He's got top-10 ability but he's got a hole in his game -- poor pocket awareness and accuracy within the pocket. He's as accurate on the edges as any quarterback I've seen on tape. I've talked to a lot of NFL quarterback coaches that believe over time, a one-year period, that his pocket awareness can be corrected. He's a little bit of a project.

    21. Cam Newton*, QB, Auburn
    I know, Cam Newton at 21 -- why? I believe in this kid. I believe in him as an athlete, I believe in his arm strength, but I don't believe he's in the top 10. He's got top-10 ability, but he's a developmental prospect. As a general manager, I would be comfortable taking him somewhere in the 20s.

    22. Adrian Clayborn, DE, Iowa
    Interesting guy. After his junior year, most would have called him a top-10 to top-15 pick. All that stuff about Erb's Palsy and will it affect his draft stock, I say watch the tape. He's a football player. Gabe Carimi got the better of him this year, but I though he dominated Carimi a year ago. If he goes in the low 20s, what a great football player you're going to get.

    23. Corey Liuget*, DT, Illinois
    He's a prototypical 3-technique -- a defensive tackle in a 4-man front. At 298 pounds, he ran a sub-5 40. As we get closer to the draft, I expect his stock to continue to increase. A lot of upside for him.

    24. Akeem Ayers*, OLB, UCLA
    On tape, he's a natural edge pass rusher. He didn't perform well at the combine; ran in the 4.9 range in the 40. There's also questions about whether he can handle a complicated defense, both with his hand down or standing up. But he is a great athlete and a natural 3-4 outside linebacker.

    25. Nate Solder, OL, Colorado
    Solder has a wonderful skill set, but he needs to get stronger and have more consistent technique. He reminds me of D'Brickashaw Ferguson in that he's a little bit underpowered, has great feet, and an awful lot of upside. That's value right there.

    26. Aaron Williams*, DB, Texas
    He didn't run well at the combine and I didn't think he looked particularly great, but I've been struggling all along with whether he's my No. 3 corner or my top safety. Every time I look at this kid, I think you could drop him on the slot, or he could also play free safety. One thing I do know, he makes plays.

    27. Cam Heyward, DT, Ohio State
    In the Sugar Bowl against Arkansas, but if you watch that game, you might be convinced he's a top 15 pick. He's had injuries, he's a little inconsistent, and there's a question about where you play him, but he's got a great motor. To me, he's a 5-technique, the defensive end in a 3-4. Some team at the end of the first round is going to get a bargain.

    28. Mike Pouncey, OL, Florida
    If the name sounds familiar it should. His twin brother was an all-pro as a rookie with the Steelers last year. He's remarkably similar to Maurkice. He didn't test very well but he can play all three interior positions on the offensive line, and he should do it in Year 1.

    29. Phil Taylor, DL, Baylor
    He's one of the biggest risers in this draft class. There aren't many 334-pound defensive tackles in the league that have the movement skills of this kid. he's had some off-the-field issues, but I don't think a guy his size and with his movement skills gets out of the first round.

    30. Jimmy Smith*, DB, Colorado
    He had an inconsistent junior season at Colorado, but he's a tremedous athlete. He's long and physical, but he's too inconsistent, which is the reason he isn't higher up on the board.

    31. Stephen Paea, DT, Oregon State
    He lifted 225 pounds a record 49 times at the combine, and the best part about those reps is it translates to functional strength on the field. He's a 3-technique player who can really get it done.

    32. Kyle Rudolph*, TE, Notre Dame
    Someone's going to get value when they pick this guy. This guy is Rob Gronkowski. He's an inline blocker if you need him to be, but he can also get down the field and he's a tremendous athlete.

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    Buy a link hereProspects are divided into three categories: As Good As Gone - barring negative developments, these players have no chance of lasting until the 16th pick; Probably Gone - players who have no better than a 50-50 chance of remaining on the board by the 16th pick; and The Next Level - players who figure to be taken next.

    Here is an early look at the players who appear to fit into those categories (* - Denotes underclassmen who declared early for the draft):

    Calvin Johnson*, WR, Georgia Tech: 6 feet 5 inches, 239 pounds. Cross between Randy Moss and Keyshawn Johnson. "If you just did it as a player he could be the first pick," one scout said. "He's kind of got Keyshawn Johnson body control but he's got top speed. I don't think there's been one like this in a long time." Declared a year early after catching 76 passes for 1,202 yards (15.8 average) and 15 TDs in 2006. "You can scout him," another scout said. "He's sort of a strider who gains speed. He can run routes, he can catch, he can take balls away. He needs to work on his blocking, but he can destroy people when he wants to."

    Joe Thomas, T, Wisconsin: 6-6 1/2, 311....
    -03-14-2007, 02:22 PM
  • Nick
    Bob McGinn's Annual Draft Quotes from Execs & Scouts: 2015 Edition
    by Nick
    2015 NFL Draft Outlook
    Feb. 21, 2015

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

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

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

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

    AS GOOD AS GONE (10)

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

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

    Brandon Scherff, T, Iowa: 6-4 1/2, 319. Part-time starter at LG as a redshirt freshman in 2011 before starting at LT from 2012-'14. "I like (Bryan) Bulaga, but I think this guy is better," said one scout. "I didn't think Bulaga could play left tackle, but I think this guy can. Everybody thinks he's the best guard, but I'd keep him at tackle and have him disprove he can't play there. He got hurt early last year and never missed a practice or a game." Like Bulaga, his arm length (33 3/8 inches) will be an issue for some teams. Massive hands (11 inches). "Real tough guy and can really run," another scout said. "Good technician. Little stiff. Kind...
    -02-22-2015, 08:01 PM
  • Nick
    Rating the NFL draft prospects: Offensive linemen
    by Nick
    Rating the NFL draft prospects: Offensive linemen
    By Bob McGinn of the Journal Sentinel
    April 19, 2013

    The Journal Sentinel's Bob McGinn assesses the top offensive linemen in the draft next week.

    Included is each player's height, weight, 40-yard dash time and projected round.


    1. LUKE JOECKEL, Texas A&M (6-6, 307, 5.30, 1) - Third-year junior started all 39 games at LT. "Look," one scout said. "There are times he gets rag-dolled. But you also have a pretty sure bet. What you see is what you get. He will start at left tackle and be real good." The son of a trial lawyer in Fort Worth, Texas, he scored 28 on the Wonderlic intelligence test. "Joeckel comes from a well-to-do family so he doesn't have that hunger that a lot of people have," another scout said. "He's not a flat-out, Walter Jones type, but he's every bit as good as Joe Thomas is. He's not a Hall of Famer, but he's really good." Arm length (34 inches) and hand size (10 1/8 inches) are good, not great. "He's just like Matt Kalil's double," a third scout said. "He's a great athlete with great technique. The only negative I have is he's not a powerful person. He gets pushed at times. I worry about him on the power."

    2. ERIC FISHER, Central Michigan (6-7 , 304, 5.07, 1) - Only offers out of Stoney Creek (Mich.) High School were Eastern Michigan and CMU. "Just a late bloomer," said Phil Savage, executive director of the Senior Bowl and a former personnel man for the Browns and Ravens. "He wasn't perfect at the Senior Bowl, but he was impressive. He looks like a pro. He's played in a two-point and a three-point (stance); it hasn't been all spread. You see him block down and use his hands. I think he's a little more ready to play today than Joeckel as far as the strength factor." Made 28 of his 34 starts at LT. Put on 60 pounds since arriving in Mount Pleasant, Mich. "First thing that jumped out at me was his ability to bend," Tennessee scout Johnny Meads said. "He's tough and physical enough. He has everything you want." Son of a postal worker in Rochester, Mich. Wonderlic of 23.

    3. LANE JOHNSON, Oklahoma (6-6, 310, 4.74, 1) - Quarterback and free safety as a prep in Groveton, Texas, then quarterbacked for a year at a junior college. At Oklahoma, he played TE and DE in 2010 before starting at RT in '11 and LT in '12. "Built like a basketball player," one scout said. "He's got narrow hips, and those are the guys I usually don't like. But he has power. I don't know where he gets it from. I'm just amazed at what the guy is." Led O-linemen in the vertical jump (34) and broad jump (9-10), put up 28 reps on the bench press and had the second fastest 40. "He's one of the best testing tackles in recent history," said another scout. "He said his goal...
    -04-21-2013, 05:39 AM
  • RamWraith
    Prisco's Top 32 Players
    by RamWraith
    March 30, 2007
    By Pete Prisco
    CBS Senior Writer

    Four weeks away from the NFL Draft means it's time to update the CBS SportsLine Top 32.

    One item that might shock you is how far down I have LSU quarterback JaMarcus Russell. I do think he will go in the top five, quite possibly No. 1, but I don't see that type of ability.

    He has a cannon for an arm, can make all the throws and has great size. Heck, he looks like a tackle playing quarterback.

    I just don't see the pinpoint passing, the great timing of the throws or his feel for the pocket. He's careless with the ball, at times, and he struggled against the better college defenses.

    Can he develop into a quality NFL quarterback? You bet. Would I take him with the first overall pick? No way.

    As of now, I have him rated at the 20th-best player. That's much lower than anybody else doing these lists, but during the 2006 season you would have been hard pressed to find a scout or personnel director who had him rated as high as they do now.

    That's what scares me about his rise -- one great bowl game changed many minds. That's stupidity.

    I watched that Sugar Bowl game against Notre Dame, and Russell looked good against a bad Fighting Irish defense ... not hard to do.

    Vaulting him up draft boards based on one game is dangerous. Vaulting him up based on his workout -- which was good -- is also dangerous.

    Does everybody who's now raving about his arm conveniently forget the scouts also raved when Kyle Boller threw a football through the goalposts while on his knees at his Pro Day workout?

    Oakland Raiders coach Lane Kiffin made a good point this week. He said Russell's big arm is great and all, but also asked how many times quarterbacks throw the ball 70 yards in a game? Answering his own question, he said twice.

    The big arm can be sexy, and Russell's is that. But there is much more to playing the quarterback position. Go ahead, tell me I'm crazy.

    But at least I'm sticking to my conviction, rather than getting all caught up in his rocket throws during a workout or one bowl-game performance.

    1. Calvin Johnson, WR, Georgia Tech: The more you hear about him from scouts, the more you get the idea he's as close to perfect a prospect as you can get. He will be special.

    2. Adrian Peterson, RB, Oklahoma: He had an amazing Pro Day workout, which we expected. He will be a lot like Eric Dickerson.

    3. Brady Quinn, QB, Notre Dame: After observing him at the combine, I'm convinced I'm right that he's the best quarterback in this draft. He's next in the Tom Brady-Peyton Manning class.

    4. Joe Thomas, T, Wisconsin: He is a prototype left tackle, and their value is big in the draft. He excels in pass protection, which teams crave.

    5. Jamaal...
    -03-31-2007, 07:54 PM
  • Nick
    Kiper: Kevin White debuts on Big Board
    by Nick
    Kevin White debuts on Big Board
    West Virginia wide receiver makes his debut, while a top QB drops off
    Originally Published: October 22, 2014
    By Mel Kiper Jr.

    The biggest mover in this week's Big Board is Kevin White, the wide receiver out of West Virginia in the midst of a spectacular season. I just see a player who has made himself better. He has become a little bit stronger, wins more battles for the ball, and even looks more sudden in his movements than he did when he debuted for the Mountaineers last season after two years at the junior college level. There are some other changes, but White's addition is perhaps the most notable this week.

    I'll keep scouting reports consistent week to week throughout the season and only make changes regarding recent performances, unless my evaluation shifts. That said, let's dive back into "the process" and another season.

    An asterisk denotes a junior for the 2014 season; two asterisks denote a redshirt sophomore.

    1. *Marcus Mariota, QB, Oregon Ducks
    Completing more than 70 percent of his throws, hasn't thrown an interception -- and that's with a mess along the offensive line. But this will help Mariota; he'll be more ready for NFL life. He combines above-average accuracy and anticipation with an ability to get through his progressions and elite athleticism. How well he can take apart a defense with tools other than his legs matters in terms of how he is viewed as a prospect, but his ability to throw on the run or to simply take off and pick up chunk yardage as a runner is a major plus.

    2. *Leonard Williams, DL, USC Trojans
    Provides impact wherever he lines up. Quick for his size, he can move all over and won't get pushed around when he's inside. At his size (6-foot-5, 290 pounds), he's a special athlete who could line up as a defensive end and drive a tackle back, or line up on the outside shoulder of a guard and create problems with power and quickness. He's the kind of disruptive, versatile lineman who can succeed in any system. A potential No. 1.

    3. *Amari Cooper, WR, Alabama Crimson Tide
    Should hit 1,000 yards receiving this week. Crazy good season. He's neither a pure burner nor an impossible matchup threat given his size (6-1, 210 pounds), but there's nothing he doesn't do well. He separates with ease and also has a good sense of how to find space against a zone. Where he really stands out is his ability to make contested catches. His work rate is legendary down there and will be a big selling point.

    4. *Randy Gregory, DE, Nebraska Cornhuskers
    Missed a lot of time early, but is now healthy, if not 100 percent. A super-athletic pass-rusher with a lean frame and exceptional quickness, he could be a 3-4 outside linebacker or add some weight and be useful in a 4-3 scheme. How well he can hold up at the point of attack, particularly against the run, will be an area scouts...
    -10-23-2014, 04:21 AM