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Rotoworld's Josh Norris's First Big Board - No QB in Top 25

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  • Nick
    Dane Brugler’s Top-60 Draft Board: Seven quarterbacks crack updated list
    by Nick
    Dane Brugler’s Top-60 Draft Board: Seven quarterbacks crack updated list
    Dane Brugler
    1h ago 15

    Four quarterbacks made my preseason draft board. Over a month into the season, the same four quarterbacks remain, but now they are joined by three more passers – one expected, two not as expected.

    Washington’s Jacob Eason is expected. A 6-5, 230-pound passer with elite arm talent, it hasn’t been surprising to see him performing well. The impressive skill set was obvious when he took the field as a true freshman at Georgia, but after missing the last two seasons, the sample size wasn’t there. Now that he has put five games on film for the Huskies, it is impossible to keep him off this list.

    The two other quarterback additions to the draft board are much more unexpected: LSU’s Joe Burrow and Oklahoma’s Jalen Hurts. In fact, I extended this list from my top-50 to my top-60 to include both of them.

    It’s important to note that Burrow didn’t come out of nowhere. He was highly recruited out of high school and narrowly lost the quarterback battle with Dwayne Haskins at Ohio State. Last year in his first season at LSU, Burrow was solid and received mid-round draft grades from myself and others around the league. But so far in 2019, he looks like a much more confident and seasoned passer, flashing NFL starting traits.

    Facing Houston, South Dakota, UCLA and Texas Tech this season, Hurts has yet to be truly tested by a defense with a pulse, which clouds the evaluation. But that doesn’t mean you ignore what Hurts has put on tape, showing tremendous development as a passer, especially within the pocket. He benefits from an elite supporting cast with terrific protection, dynamic skill players and an offensive system that caters to his strengths. However, the execution and production are the responsibility of the quarterback and Hurts has been stellar. Five weeks into the college football season, I’m glad I don’t have to put a final grade on him yet, but NFL scouts are starting to believe in Hurts’ next level potential.

    It is still early in the process and this list will continue to fluctuate as we gain more information and learn about these prospects. But if the 2020 NFL Draft was tomorrow…

    *Indicates draft-eligible underclassman

    1. *Chase Young, EDGE, Ohio State (6-5, 266, 4.76)

    Once the 2019 NFL Draft ended, Young was the clear No. 1 draft-eligible prospect for the 2020 draft class. Over a month into the 2019 season, he has only improved and widened that gap between him and the next-best nonquarterback in April’s draft.

    2. *Tua Tagovailoa, QB, Alabama (6-0, 232, 4.78)

    No, I don’t think Tagovailoa will be the consensus top quarterback for next year’s class. He won’t be for everyone due to his size and average arm...
    -09-30-2019, 08:04 AM
  • Nick
    2017 NFL Draft Round 4 #125: Rams select Samson Ebukam, LB, Eastern Washington
    by Nick
    SAMSON EBUKAM
    EASTERN WASHINGTON BIG SKY

    6'3"
    HEIGHT
    240LBS.
    WEIGHT

    OVERVIEW
    Nnamaka Samson Ebukam was born in Nigeria, but learned football early on in Portland, Oregon and excelled as a high school defensive end and tight end. Ebukam contributed as a true freshman, playing 15 games as a reserve (28 tackles, four for loss, three sacks). He was a second-team All-Big Sky selection as a hybrid linebacker/defensive end in 2014 (12 TFL, 7.5 sacks) and 2015 (7.5 TFL, four sacks). Samson was a team co-captain in his senior year, garnering third-team FCS All-American honors from the Associated Press with 15 tackles for loss and a team-leading 9.5 sacks.

    ANALYSIS
    STRENGTHS Explosive athlete with a background in basketball, javelin and shot-put in high school. Triggers out of his stance with quick-twitch as a rusher. Attacks the edge with plus burst and has the desire to keep working when he gets punched and controlled early. Wowed teams with a vertical leap of 39 inches and a sub 4.5 forty yard dash at his pro day. Plays with a suddenness when crashing down the line after ball carriers. Drawn to the play like a magnet. Lauded for intelligence and work ethic. Initial quickness creates disruption in run game. Chalked up 15 tackles for loss and two forced fumbles in 2016. Rangy with a willingness to pursue way down the field.

    WEAKNESSES Tends to play too frenetically at times. Will need to eliminate some of the wasted motion with his flailing arms and legs. Gets overly focused on blocker in front of him and will lose sight of ball carrier. Wins with raw athleticism over technique. Better hand usage must become a priority. Gets glued to blocks for too long and can be slow to disengage. One-speed pass rusher who doesn't generate as much speed to power as hoped. Lacks the size to play through redirect blocks. Needs to develop a more nuanced rush plan with workable counter moves for next level.

    DRAFT PROJECTION Round 5

    NFL COMPARISON Bryan Braman

    BOTTOM LINE Ebukam is a driven prospect with above average intelligence who is still in the process of matching his skill to his athletic ability. He lacks desired size and power to play with his hand in the ground and will have to move to an outside linebacker spot. Ebukam has a chance to get drafted on the third day and his speed, explosiveness, and motor could make him a special teams standout while a team works to develop him as a pass rusher.
    -04-29-2017, 11:05 AM
  • Nick
    Norris: E-W Shrine Review
    by Nick
    Norris: E-W Shrine Review
    Friday, January 17, 2014
    Josh Norris
    All Star Circuit

    Rather than breakdown the East and West rosters position by position, I decided to take this review a different way. Honestly, after the first day it was fairly obvious who the prospects were that had a chance to impress this week. Those players put on consistent performances each day, standing out in individual and team drills. With that said, these rankings are not based solely on this event (as you will see with some prospects that had “down” weeks), but rather how I rank the prospects moving forward. All postseason practices and games are used as an extra exposure, as complementary pieces, not the backbone of an evaluation.

    You will notice a trend in certain positions being listed. That was not on purpose, but I truly feel those spots generated the most talent this week and are some of the deeper positions in this year’s draft. As a side note, I will have my Senior Bowl preview posted soon along with updates throughout next week.

    1. QB Jimmy Garoppolo, Eastern Illinois - There might have been certain points in the week where Jeff Mathews looked like a better prospect, but when comparing inseason action, the two are not close. Garoppolo has quick feet, quick eyes, and a quick release. As long as a quarterback can find open throwing lanes and/or throw from multiple platforms, I do not care about their height, but some evaluators were happy to see Garoppolo measure in over 6’2 and with a hand size of 9.13 inches.

    Teams will likely question his ability to work from center and hit patterns with timing and anticipation. Garoppolo certainly works through multiple reads, but there is a bit of an improvisational style to it. The progressions seem to be at his pace.

    Many offenses rely on quick decision makers with a quick release, and Garoppolo can absolutely check these boxes. Things change a bit when pressured, as the quarterback has a tendency to drift laterally rather than step up or work from a phone booth. Garoppolo will end up in the crowded tier of passers after the top four, but do not be surprised if he tops that group. He displays mobility, touch, velocity, placement and a willingness to hit receivers at every level of the field. A second day selection is within reach for Garoppolo.

    2. CB Pierre Desir, Linwood - Long, athletic corners that can match up with receivers at the catch point will be coveted during the draft process. He might be a “small school” prospect, but Desir fits the bill. Standing at 6’1/197 with almost a 33-inch reach, Desir could wind up as one of the longest corners in this class.

    I always complain about college programs not implementing more press man coverage, especially since illegal contact does not exist at this level of football. Since it is not allowed in the actual all star game, Desir was limited to off coverage situations, something...
    -01-18-2014, 07:02 AM
  • Nick
    2019 Senior Bowl: Offensive prospects who'll have great value later in 2019 NFL Draft
    by Nick
    2019 Senior Bowl: Offensive prospects who'll have great value later in 2019 NFL Draft
    These offensive prospects likely won't go early in the draft but will have great value when they're picked
    By Chris Trapasso
    @ChrisTrapasso
    Jan 17, 2019 • 3 min read

    The 2019 NFL Draft will feature a defensive-heavy class of prospects, and many of the top offensive players are underclassmen.

    That means this year's Senior Bowl isn't oozing with first-round picks on the offensive side of the ball. So what? How about zeroing in on some prospects who'll ultimately come with outstanding value later in the draft? Those are always fun to identify.

    Keelan Doss, WR, UC Davis
    After emerging as a budding star in 2016 with 10 receiving scores, Doss put back-to-back 110-plus catch seasons on his collegiate resume, and he topped 1,300 yards in each of the last two years.

    At 6-foot-3 and around 210 pounds, he has an athletic frame that allows him to explode off the line, quickly gain then sustain speed downfield, contort his body to make receptions on inaccurate passes, and morph into a tall running back after the ball is in his hands.

    It'll be interesting to monitor how much difficulty Doss' combination of length and athleticism gives the Senior Bowl cornerbacks next week.

    Ryquell Armstead, RB, Temple
    Armstead plays with a lot of controlled power. What I mean by that is he doesn't simply look for contact and lower his head every time he carries the football. When defenders get to him, they bounce off because he runs so hard. Armstead is a north-south back with light feet capable of delivering a quick spin move or efficient jump cut at the second level to make linebackers miss.

    He's quicker than fast but sneaks through crevasses in the line between the tackles. Armstead won't hit many 50-yard home runs, but he's a blue-collar runner with deceptive athleticism who can be a quality No. 2 ball-carrier in the NFL because of his vision, wherewithal, and twitchiness.

    Andre Dillard, OT, Washington State
    Dillard needs to get stronger. There's no doubt about that. But he probably got more pass-protection reps than any other left tackle in the country over the past three seasons playing at Washington State, and his amazing athletic gifts allow him to stay under control and extraordinarily balanced essentially every time he's asked to block on a pass play.

    He'll likely be tested the most against bull rushes, but if Dillard shows improved anchoring skills in Mobile, the Washington State star will prove his worth as a high-quality value pick in the 2019 class.

    Myles Gaskin, RB, Washington
    All Gaskin did in his four-year career with the Huskies was piece together four-straight 1,200-plus yard seasons with 57 rushing scores at a hefty 5.6 yards per pop.

    He may not hit the 200-pound threshold,...
    -01-22-2019, 03:22 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
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