Monday, February 23, 2015

BDS - 2015 B1G NFL Draft Part 1

Introduction
This is intended to be a look at the B1G players participating in the NFL combine (and a couple others that I think may get drafted). I include combine results, though that is only a small part of the equation for me. I put much more value into what I've seen on film rather than by how well someone has been taught to run the 40 yard dash. I try to give a basic overview of strengths, weaknesses, fit, and where I'd expect them to be drafted based on "norms". What that means is that I'm not really looking at mock drafts, I don't have my ear to the ground for what Mel Kiper is saying about a guy. It's just based on what I've seen on film. This will be five parts long, with teams coming in alphabetical order.


Brian Spurlock, USA Today Sports


Indiana
Coleman, Tevin - RB - 5'11" -206 - 32" Arm - 8 5/8" Hand
40 - N/A sec
Bench - 22 Reps
Vert - N/A"
Broad Jump - N/A"
3-Cone - N/A sec
20 Yd Shuffle - N/A sec
60 Yd Shuffle - N/A sec

Strength - Strong runner that also has the burst and speed to beat the 2nd level to the edge and turn moderate gains into long ones. His combination of strength and burst make him a threat on any carry, as he will punish tacklers between the tackles but can catch defenders flat-footed if they are only prepared to treat him as a power back. Has the burst to be a threat vs LBs in the pass game.

Weakness - Is not patient at this point in his career, and that may be only harder to overcome as he transitions from a spread scheme to a pro-style one. He isn't patient to the hole, he isn't patient with his cut back either, making him sometimes a bit predictable when picking where to carry the football. While he is violent, he tends to play high, which may lead to injuries. Needs to improve his feel for working in the pass game, and may be forced to start as a two-down back.

Projection - 1-3

Overview - Coleman didn't work out at the combine due to a foot injury, so our combine information is limited. Regardless, Coleman is a downhill RB that hits every hole like it's his last. He has somewhat limited wear on his tread compared to many other backs, which may help him survive a bit longer in the league, but he'll have to learn to protect himself a bit by lowering his pads if he wants to remain healthy in the NFL. He may be a role player early, but be prepared for him to take some time to transition in the league. He has the skills to fit into any scheme, it just may take some time for him to get a feel for the flow and level of patience needed as an every down ball-carrier.

Richardson, Bobby - DE/DT - 6'3" - 283 - 34 5/8" Arm - 11" Hand
40 - 5.16 sec
Bench - N/A Reps
Vert - 32.5"
Broad Jump - 106.0"
3-Cone - N/A sec
20 Yd Shuffle - N/A sec
60 Yd Shuffle - N/A sec

Strength - His length in combination with how he uses his hands are why Richardson is an NFL prospect. He's not a great athlete and he doesn't have great size, but he works hard, he's long, and he can get off blocks when needed to. He has the athletic ability and motor to work his way into a player at the next level, the question will be which team will be willing to work with him.

Weakness - He really doesn't have the measurables for any system. He's too short for a 3-4 DE, and too small for a 4-3 DT. He still isn't polished in his moves and how he attacks the football. What you see is a guy that uses his hands well and then chases, rather than a guy that is making plays. That's why, on film, you see a lot of "almost" plays from him. He has potential, but he needs to be able to improve strength and technique so that he doesn't get forced into gaps and out of plays, but instead forces the action onto offensive players.

Projection - 4 - UDF

Overview - I think his length makes up for issues of height, but he's going to have to find a team that fits him. That means a team has to fall in love with him. In that case, they may overvalue him as a project, but he may also slip completely. He has a lot of upside, but he's going to take some time to get there and the right fit for him to work.

Iowa

Davis, Carl - DT - 6'5" - 320 - 34 5/8" Arm - 11" Hand
40 - 5.07 sec
Bench - N/A Reps
Vert - 33.0"
Broad Jump - 103.0"
3-Cone - 7.91 sec
20 Yd Shuffle - 4.47 sec
60 Yd Shuffle - N/A sec

Strength - A true NT. He has the size and length, combined with the power, to hold down that NT position. His use of hands has consistently improved, and he knows how to get off of blockers and stay off of blockers and be disruptive at the point of attack in his gap. Has potential to be the cornerstone of a 3-4, and has the measurables to boot.

Weakness - Poor effort, poor conditioning, and less impact than he should have given the strengths noted above. Right now he's a two-down player that struggles to get to the QB and often doesn't have the ability to move and make plays outside of his gap. He is disruptive when run right at him, but anything outside his area is a play he will not make. He's rooted to his spot and that's about it.

Projection - 2-6

Overview - I lead to the earlier pick for Davis, as I think some team will fall in love with what he can potentially be, but he's going to have to prove it. Davis has the natural ability to be a force at the point of attack, but he also isn't disruptive or productive enough to warrant being picked higher. Who will fall in love with the potential? How many coaches will pass on him because they see a lot of talent but not the desire at a position that requires it? Davis is a real risk, as teams could be kicking themselves for passing on him, or kicking themselves for picking a guy that doesn't consistently make a major impact or appear to give full effort.

Donnal, Andrew - OG/OT - 6'6" - 313 - 33 1/2" Arm - 10" Hand
40 - 5.31 sec
Bench - 17 Reps
*Vert - 32.0"
Broad Jump - 101.0"
3-Cone - 7.84 sec
20 Yd Shuffle - 4.77 sec
60 Yd Shuffle - N/A sec

Strength - Versatile player that can fill in either inside or outside. He has good enough technique to plug in either situation when needed, and in that case makes a compelling depth guy on a roster.

Weakness - All around, he's just a bit limited. He doesn't really have the strength to plug in as a plow, he doesn't really have the length or athleticism to be an every game OT. Can those things be developed? Potentially. But they aren't there yet.

Projection - 4 - UDF

Overview - Last year there was a need for a versatile OL that was more likely to be a depth player than an every game starter. Denver reached really early to pick up Schofield out of Michigan. That was rare, and honestly, probably a mistake. I don't think Donnal moves quite as well as Schofield, but both are quite solid from a technique standpoint. The problem is projecting the need. In the early rounds, few teams are looking for guys that merely improve depth and make great plug-in guys in the event of an injury. Someone may jump on Donnal for that, but it's hard to say when.

Scherff, Brandon - OT/OG - 6'5" - 319 - 33 3/8" Arm - 11" Hand
*40 - 5.05 sec
Bench - 23 Reps
Vert - N/A"
Broad Jump - N/A"
3-Cone - N/A sec
20 Yd Shuffle - N/A sec
60 Yd Shuffle - N/A sec

Strength - The more I watched Scherff the more I came away impressed. He has the strength to move through the first level and create wash on the second level. He gets great power for his hips and legs and can, when asked, flip outside to seal a defender inside. He just does a great job with his feet and hips to always maintain power and finish plays in the run game. But beyond that, I was impressed with what I saw in the pass game, and what it comes down to is his ability to move his feet and little wasted movement.

Weakness - He doesn't maintain blocks always as well as he should, and sometimes get too tight in his blocks. With stronger rushers or defenders, this means they can get into his body a bit and control him at times. When he latches on and finishes blocks, he is very good, but when separation occurs, he can struggle. This means he needs to do better at the second level in the run game, and needs to be better at handling the variety of moves that will likely be thrown at him in pass protection.

Projection - 1-2

Overview - Some will view him as an interior OL prospect, and that could drop his stock a bit. I personally disagree. While I think he starts on the inside, I think he ends up at RT. He can be a dominant run blocker and has potential to hold down the edge at RT. While I don't think he's probably fluid enough to be an every down LT, he has that potential to fill in. Mostly though, I think teams will simply want to run behind him, and that means plugging him in at the other positions is probably for the best. His lower bench press numbers may indicated some of his issues maintaining blocks and kind of hugging defenders, but his leg strength and ability to move his feet and get his hips in front make him a great prospect for any team that wants to be able to move the ball on the ground.

Trinca-Pasat, Louis - DT - 6'1" - 290 - 31 7/8" Arm - 10 1/8" Hand
40 - 4.96 sec
Bench - N/A Reps
Vert - 32.0"
Broad Jump - 105.0"
3-Cone - 7.4 sec
20 Yd Shuffle - 4.3 sec
60 Yd Shuffle - N/A sec

Strength - Hard working player that is both stronger than his size suggests, and more athletic than his frame suggests. He is another true gap filler in the pass game and does a good job rooting his base and staying alive in plays. He is the type of guy coaches love, because he seems to maximize his ability.

Weakness - Where does he fit? He's not tall or long enough to hold up well against strong blockers with more length. He isn't strong enough or big enough to consistently hold up to doubles. And he doesn't really always do a great job getting off blocks, as he sometimes gets swallowed and pre-occupied with what's in front of him.

Projection - 5-UDF

Overview - As fans, these are the guys we fall in love with. We can see their effort, we can see how they maximize their ability. Then we see the projection above and think "what they..." Coaches fall in love with these guys too, but they also have a bunch of scouts telling them to hold off. What happens with Trinca-Pasat is hard to say. Coaches will love him from his effort standpoint, but he just is going to really struggle to fit any scheme well at the next level. He's not athletic enough to be a disruptive 3-tech, not big enough to handle the nose, and not long enough for a 3-4 DE. He's a guy you like on your practice squad or as depth because he pushes those around him to be better. Who values that the most? That's where he'll likely end up.

Maryland

Cudjoe-Virgil, Yannik - OLB - 6'2" - 248 - 32 5/8" Arm - 9 3/4" Hand
40 - N/A sec
Bench - 25 Reps
Vert - N/A"
Broad Jump - N/A"
3-Cone - N/A sec
20 Yd Shuffle - N/A sec
60 Yd Shuffle - N/A sec

Strength - Plays well against zone based offenses and can set the edge a bit by keeping extension away from blockers and not letting the play outside of him. Experience as a 3-4 OLB may help him.

Weakness - Nothing stands out. He recorded a season-high four tackles twice and only had 21 tackles on the year. That's to go along with only two sacks. He's a role player at the college level, one that can funnel guys to pursuit, but he doesn't really make plays, he isn't disruptive against lead blockers, and he doesn't establish himself as a physical presence on the edge, he just does his job. That's not bad at the college level, but it won't go very far in terms of NFL stock.

Projection: 7-UDF

Overview: I don't really see him getting drafted. He may be seen as a guy that can work on special teams and fill in as a backup as a 3-4 OLB, but he doesn't really have a lot of scheme flexibility and he doesn't standout in the scheme that he fits.

Diggs, Stefon - WR - 6'0" - 195 - 31 1/4" Arm - 10" Hand
40 - 4.46 sec
Bench - N/A Reps
Vert - 35.0"
Broad Jump - 115.0"
3-Cone - 7.03" sec
20 Yd Shuffle - 4.32 sec
60 Yd Shuffle - N/A sec

Strength - An explosive runner that only seems to get more explosive with the ball in his hands. He has the natural athleticism, from a flexibility, hink-sinking, and explosion standpoint to be a serious threat out of the slot. And unlike most slots, he is size deficient. He flashes very good hands, and he fully understands what makes him a threat: space.

Weakness - He still lacks functional strength and doesn't have the straight line speed to separate from faster DBs. What this means is that he can be muscled by bigger DBs and faster DBs can run with him on the outside in man coverage. This limits him a bit. While he could potentially be a move guy that you work outside for match-ups to get into space (including on screens), he doesn't have the desired attributes to really work one-on-one vs better CBs. On top of that, he concentration often faulters when working over the middle. For a guy that needs to be able to threaten the whole field underneath to fully utilize his short-area burst and ability to get open in space, being afraid crossing the middle can be a serious knock.

Projection - 2-6

Overview - I could easily see a team falling in love with watching him run with the ball in his hands. But his combine didn't go as well as he probably hoped, and he does have injury concerns. In many ways, he's good to really good at everything, but great at nothing. He's still learning, he's still raw, but he still needs to be consistent on every down to be that serious threat out of the slot. If he takes plays off or doesn't want to run routes over the middle, he can't be nearly as effective as teams want him to be. So it will come down to team needs and how much the weigh ceiling with some of the major limiting concerns. I think injury concerns at least push him to round three, but he has talent to go earlier, and red-flags to push him later.

Long, Deon - WR - 6'0" - 192 - 31" Arm - 9 1/2" Hand
40 - 4.51 sec
Bench - 12 Reps
Vert - 34.0"
Broad Jump - 120.0"
3-Cone - 6.98" sec
20 Yd Shuffle - 4.27 sec
60 Yd Shuffle - N/A sec

Strength - Flashes a lot more ability than consistently demonstrated. Has ability to make very difficult catches, adjusting in the air, and making up for poorer throws. From a foot-speed standpoint, he has the ability to get off the LOS and stem into a lot of different areas and then make a move immediately after the catch.

Weakness - Has a bit of a miss-match of strengths that don't combine into a easy fit, and doesn't have the talent to make it worth altering offenses to make use of his skills. He doesn't really have the pure speed to take the top off of defenses consistently, and doesn't really have the strength to play on the LOS. At that point, he because a minus-athlete at the slot position or an undersized WR at the outside spot. He also wasn't always consistent. Inconsistent hands, concentration, effort, ability to get separation, all are things that were flashed and then went away. QB play for Maryland was an issue, but the film sometimes doesn't speak highly for Long helping out.

Projection - 5-UDF

Overview - It's just really hard to see a fit. On top of that, he's a bit of a risk. He played for several different teams and had some injury issues. But at the end of the day, when he was on the field, he also produced relatively consistently and was never completely taken out of games. Teams will see that and appreciate that, and may think they can fix some of his issues with more coaching and more time in the weight room. Former NFL WR Keenan McCardell was his WR coach at Maryland, I get a feeling that his impression of Long and his ability at the next level will go a long ways to where he ultimately gets drafted.

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