North Squad

Quarterbacks:

Russell Wilson (Wisconsin) was seen once again getting mental reps when not behind center and Wisconsin’s head coach Bret Billema had some very nice things to say about his work ethic. Noting that he is a quick study and a fast learner. Wilson is sort of the wildcard in this group but something about him has always intrigued me so I am interested to see him compete the rest of the week leading into the game Saturday. I didn’t get to see him throw too much today but on the one play I did see he showed read the  coverage and understood where to go with the football. Wilson kept his eyes on the high safety and saw the will linebacker move to the middle of the field before finding his open man to the left. These shows me he has some mental alertness and awareness with the football. Wilson strikes me as a player who does all the little things right.

– Kirk Cousins (Michigan State) was sort of an up and down day for Cousins as he made a great touch throw on a post corner at one point during practice. However, later during team he fell away from his throw and was late with the ball resulting in an interception by George Iloka of Boise State. I love Cousins intangibles and appreciate him as a quarterback but I need to see more of him. The competition between Russel in Kirk is heating up and I have to think it will only get better tomorrow, both these young guys have some things you like in a quarterback.

-Kellen Moore (Boise State) struggled again today with a fumbled snap (small hands) and showed very little in the arm strength department. He is going to have an extremely difficult time driving the ball into tight windows at the next level, which will limit his ability to be effective at the next level. His ball comes out with very little velocity and tends to float, making it easy for defensive backs to close on the football.

Running Backs

Doug Martin (Boise State) was the most impressive back today and gained some ground on his counterpart Chris Polk. Martin showed nice burst and explosion and did a good job pressing the line while running with a forward lean. His ability to change directions in an instant is extremely encouraging and one of the things that make him one of my favorite prospects in Mobile this week.

Chris Polk (Washington) struggled in one on one pass protection drills as he was essentially bulled-over by a smaller sized linebacker in Lavonte David. This was extremely discouraging considering many considered he would hold up well in pass protection. I am also starting to question Polk’s burst and acceleration through the hole as he doesn’t seem to possess much explosion to his game. I also noticed that Polk seemed to be going through the motions some as he didn’t finish his runs like he should. Today wasn’t the best day for one of the top backs in the draft, I’m excited to see how he responds tomorrow.

I didn’t get to see much of Pead or Herron running the football but both struggled in pass protection as well as they both were beaten and knocked off balanced with their poor technique.

Wide Receivers

T.J. Graham (NC State) didn’t have as impressive of a day as yesterday but was solid overall. He struggled a little bit with press coverage and had a double catch at one point, but overall he was solid and showed up for the 2nd day in a row which is encouraging. His routes still looked crisp and he also showed a lot of confidence in his hands. Graham’s stock should be on the rise after this week and I am interested to see how the coach’s use his talents in the game saturday.

Marvin Jones (California) once again had a good day as he showed natural burst and acceleration. He absolutely blew by coverage at one point and simply out ran the coverage. This deep speed is good to see and I will be watching him closer the rest of the week.

Brian Quick (Appalachian State) once again struggled for the 2nd day in a row. He had a couple dropped passes again today and was seen body catching more often than he had during film or yesterday at practice. There is no denying he has physical raw talent and potential with his size and length but he needs some refinement and work. His lack of explosiveness off the line is making him easy to turn and run with as he has created little separation all week. He looks stiff in and out of his breaks and is struggling to make much of an impact at this point in the week.

Gerrel Robinson (Arizona State) is a player who has caught my eye and intrigued me a little here and there. He has shown flashes of greatness by consistently catching the ball away from his frame. His long strides eat up cushions quickly and he is very quick to get on his man. His route running needs work but he is a smooth strider who covers a lot of ground and has been impressing me some this week. He’s a player on my radar that I will be watching closer in the coming days.

Tight Ends

Michael Egnew (Missouri) showed some potential as an in-line blocker yesterday but the same could not be said today. He struggled sustaining blocks and seems to lack strength at the point of attack. His routes were not as clean today and he showed less athleticism and ability to threaten the seam/stretch the field as well. I like Egnew but he needs to come out with a better showing on Wednesday and Thursday.

Offensive Tackles

Mike Adams (Ohio State) had a much more quiet day today than he did on monday. I liked the patience he showed setting into pass pro as he looked very strong and balanced. His play was quiet today and didn’t stand out on any good or bad levels, tomorrow I will watch closer.

Mike Brewster (Ohio State) is a player that has me frustrated. His battles in 1 on 1’s with Michigan’s Mike Martin are extremely chippy and fun to watch, especially considering the rich rivalry between their schools. However, his play has been too inconsistent to this point for my liking. One play he will get bull-rushed and knocked back into the quarterback and the next he will show good technique and movement skills to beat his man for positioning. Brewster has never really wowed me athletically and I am not that high on him as of right now.

Kevin Zeitler (Wisconsin) made some snaps from the center position today but looked a little uncomfortable and out of his element. He looked confused and out-of-place and his most natural place is inside at guard. I absolutely love his lunch pail type attitude as he is an absolute mauler and road grader up front. His technique is solid although he does struggle to reposition and sync together his feet and hips to recover on counter moves at times. Zeitler is very solid overall however and has helped himself this week, I have a solid 2nd round grade on him as of right now.

 Defensive Lineman

Vinny Curry (Marshall) has shown flashes but has yet to put it all together at this point. He is showing solid effort trying to bend the edge and run the arc but he is struggling with balance. He seems to be playing a bit stiff and bending at the waist, which is severely limiting his ability to turn the corner without being knocked off-balance around the corner. His pad level is nice but his ankle and hip flexibility seems to be lacking a bit. I wish I had the opportunity to see Curry run the figure eight drill to test this and see for myself firsthand, but I will just have to go with what I am seeing from him in 1 on 1 drills for now. Curry intrigues me and I am excited to watch more of him in the coming days of practice.

Mike Martin (Michigan) has been battling with Ohio State C Mike Brewster during 1 on 1’s for the last couple days and boy has it been fun to watch! Martin is built like a brick shit house and I got to meet him this summer during my internship with the Detroit Lions. I came away impressed with his attitude as he seemed to be a very well-spoken young man. He is squatty but thick, especially in the upper body where he has plenty of bulk. He is a relentless pass rusher that is very strong and powerful at the point of attack who wears you down with his persistent attitude as a rusher. Martin has improved his draft stock so far and scouts love his effort and motor on every play….he will find a way to make an impact in the NFL somehow , someway I can guarantee you that.

Kendall Reyes (Connecticut) has flashed all week and is one of the players I am going to go do more work on, based on the effort and film he has put out so far. He looks very quick and explosive off the line and is displaying nice handwork. His violent hands and impressive array of counter moves has gotten him noticed…he has been a riser and welcome surprise for many, including myself this week.

Alameda Ta’amu (Washington) responded well to a poor showing on monday. He showed nice quickness and explosion off the ball and gets a good push to collapse the pocket. We already know he lacks much to be desired in the pass rush department but his effort and tenacity on every play make him a good fit for a nose tackle role in the NFL.

Derek Wolfe (Cincinnati) didn’t stand out too much today but overall I liked what I saw from him. Wolfe plays with great pad level and gets a good push to collapse the pocket consistently. He struggles to get much arm extension to create space between he and his man, but did a wonderful job disengaging and finding the football. His versatility to play 3 technique in a 4-3 or 5 technique in a 3-4 is something that makes him very marketable to many teams and I expect his value to rise following his performance this week.

Linebackers

Lavonte David (Nebraska) has always been one of my favorite players in this draft and is being under-valued in my opinion. He absolutely bull-dozed Chris Polk during one on ones and is a much more stronger/powerful player than he is given credit for. It was also noted by the broadcast crew that he excelled on special teams. David is lacking in size some but I currently have him rated higher than more highly touted weakside linebacker prospect Zach Brown because of his ability to defend against the run.

Cam Johnson (Virginia) is another player who has flashed plenty all week. His quickness and athleticism has been extremely impressive as he was able to beat Mike Adams soundly with an up and under move. He also sealed the edge well and attacked with the proper shoulder by keeping his outside shoulder and arm free on the edge. He has been one of the more impressive players so far this week for me and I am excited to watch more film on him based on his performance.

Bobby Wagner (Utah State) had an impressive day overall. He was very good in coverage and displayed above average pass rushing ability in 1 on 1’s. Wagner is a bit on the shorter side but he is quietly putting together a strong showing.

Defensive Backs

Alfonzo Dennard (Nebraska) was exposed for his lack of foot speed and inability to turn and run with receivers yesterday. I thought he responded well today after being allowed to play up at the line in press coverage where he is most comfortable. One of my favorite things about Dennard is his ability to recognize routes and reads his wide receivers movements and body language. This allows Dennard to stay in his man’s hip pocket very well and I thought he played very disciplined overall. He also excelled on special teams today which was good to hear given the criticism he has received to this point.

Jamell Flemming (Oklahoma) was one of the more impressive corners today in my opinion. He displayed loose hips and quick feet to turn and run with his man. His ball skills and ability to locate the football was also a very good thing to see. I am excited to see him play the rest of the week to get a better understanding of his overall skill level.

Donnie Fletcher (Boston College) had a very rough first day but bounced back nicely today. He looked much more comfortable pressing at the line as he was able to get a hand on his receiver and re-route/control him from the get go. I liked the way he responded, as he seemed much more patient and didn’t seem to be guessing and sitting on routes as much today.

Georg Iloka (Boise State) is creating all sorts of buzz this week, as many are very intrigued with his combination of size and athleticism. At 6-3 225 lbs, Iloka looks more like a linebacker than defensive back but his length and physical ability is hard not to notice. He has great range and length and made a fine interception on QB Kirk Cousins today. He does a nice job staying in his man’s hip pocket and was rewarded by his effort on the football field today. Iloka is generating some buzz this week and scouts are excited to see what he has to offer.

Biggest Winners:

1. RB Doug Martin Boise State

2. DL Kendall Reyes Connecticut

3. LB Lavonte David (Nebraska)

Biggest Losers:

1. RB Chris Polk Washington

2. TE Michael Egnew Missouri

3. C Mike Brewster Ohio State

South Squad

Quarterbacks

Brandon Weeden (Oklahoma State) has to be one of the biggest risers from today. He looked very balanced when asked to drop back and did a great job with ball placement, putting the ball over the correct shoulder on a deep touch throw to Joe Adams. His maturity is noticeable as well as he looks poised and confident as well as cool, calm, and collected. His accuracy and ball speed on the run was also a very promising thing to see as he also displayed solid footwork to get his body around into his throw. Weeden is easily the best quarterback on the South roster and is putting on a fantastic performance at this point. The game will be a better indicator but for now I have to say I am eating crow for having doubted his skill…just mentally biased because of his age, but if a team can look past that they could be getting a very fine quarterback capable of starting early.

Nick Foles (Arizona) has not been as impressive unfortunately. He looked like a wide-eyed rookie at moments today as he was less than commanding in the huddle or under center. He also looked slow going through his motions to execute the play and overall just looked out of his element and uncomfortable. Foles isn’t showing me the type of intangibles needed to become a starting franchise quarterback at this point.

I didn’t get much information on Ryan Lindley today but will try again tomorrow.

 Running Backs

Chris Rainey (Florida) was really the only player I got to take many detailed notes on today. He was used as a receiver today and although his routes were extremely raw, he flashed potential and unbelievable quickness and speed. A true track star Rainey absolutely blew by his former team-mate Janoris Jenkins at one point and seemed to be almost gliding down the field. Rainey may be one of the most versatile players in this game and I am excited to see how Mike Shanahan and the Redskins use his speed and skill in the game Saturday.

Wide Receivers

Joe Adams (Arkansas) had another impressive day. His suddenness and quickness allowed him to beat the press and he has proved to be a very hard player to keep covered for very long. He gained inside positioning with his footwork and will have extra value because of his return ability..Adams has helped himself so far this week.

Juron Criner (Arizona) was the star from practice today after making an excellent one handed stab on a comeback route near the sidelines. The catch showcased Criner’s superb athleticism, concentration, and hand-eye coordination skills. He also looked fast and fluid showcasing a solid double move to create separation. Criner is creating some buzz this week and is looking to move up the draft rankings.

Jeff Fuller (Texas A&M) has been less than stellar and the analyst brought up a point/concern about Fuller that I have also noted in the past. For being so big, Fuller is just way too soft and needs to be much more physical to get the most out of his impressive frame/size. He showed little burst and his ability to accelerate was modest at best. His routes seemed to be leggy and slow developing for me and I am concerned with his ability to separate at the next level.

Tight Ends

Ladarius Green (Louisianna-Lafayette) didn’t look as sudden or explosive as I would have liked, however he used his length very well and showed effortless hands to snag passes away from his long frame. I need to see much more from Green in the coming days and will be paying closer attention.

Another player who is starting to generate some buzz and caught my eye today was LSU TE Deangelo Peterson who has NFL size and athletic ability. Keep an eye on Peterson, as he could be one of those rare players who has a better pro than college career.

Offensive Lineman

James Brown (Troy) is a player Mike Mayock has mentioned as a potential sleeper and player he is intrigued by and I saw a little bit why today. He gets good inside hand placement and shows nice ability to re-set and close door back inside on counter moves. His patience is also nice and the only thing I noticed was that he played a little upright at times but this flaw is correctable. Brown is a player to watch in the coming days as he is faced up with some very talented defensive lineman on the South squad.

Cordy Glenn (Georgia) gets good pop and is quick off the snap. He also keeps his elbows in for the most part and did a nice job re-anchoring and recovering with solid footwork. He got beat with a spin move when he failed to keep his feet moving but overall I like his ability to reset his feet if beaten initially. Glenn has a better chance of staying outside at tackle than Keleche Osemele in my opinion.

Ben Jones (Georgia) is never going to look to great in 1 on 1’s and he struggled a bit today. He exposes his chest and lets players into his body far too easily, but Jones just seems to get the job done consistently. This is why I currently have Jones ranked higher than Ohio State’s Mike Brewster.

Matt McCants (UAB) is a player I see some potential in. He got matched up with some great players today in Upshaw and Ingram but did well for the most part. I loved his discipline to not flinch or jump when Upshaw twice tried to time the snap and twitched to try to draw a false start from McCants. However, Matt stood in there strong and didn’t get flustered or uncomposed. This shows me some mental alertness and concentration, all while standing across from the most feared pass rusher in the entire Senior Bowl. He bent at the waist a little and got a little straight legged, leaving him unbalanced and susceptible which Upshaw took good advantage of by knocking him to the ground. McCants is raw but there is definitely potential here, keep an eye on him.

Zebrie Sanders (Florida State) was a bit inconsistent today as he showed both some good and some bad things. I love his ability to anchor and neutralize the bull-rush as he also re-set his hands and feet well. However, he dropped his head and bent at the waist when lined up with Ingram, which is more a testament to Ingram’s athletic ability than anything in my opinion. Sander’s was one of my potential break-out players heading into the week but that has yet to culminate as he has struggled against Coples and Ingram to this point.

Defensive Lineman

Quinton Coples (North Carolina) has very stong and powerful hands that allow him to disengage with relative ease. I don’t believe he has a very good get-off, as his quickness is lacking but I never thought of him as a dominant pass rusher coming in. His burst and athleticism is good relative to his size and he is a player that can help vs. the pass and run…he has been solid so far, but is probably not worth a Top 10 pick at this point.

Jaye Howard (Florida) flashed a bit today during 1 on 1’s. His spin move had Cordy Glenn rendered off balanced and he looked pretty disruptive inside during team, shooting gaps and showing his quickness/explosion off the ball. Howard caught some people’s attention today and will be getting a much closer look in the coming days of practice.

Melvin Ingram (South Carolina) played like a man possessed today. His athleticism was on full display and his versatility to play with his hand in the dirt or standing up has defensive coordinators chomping at the bit. Ingram flashed very good explosion and quickness as he was able to beat his man with both and inside swim and deceptive swim move. Ingram is definitely catching people’s attention today and is one of the high risers of the week so far…he is creating plenty of buzz.

Courtney Upshaw (Alabama) was the big winner of the day, flashing very agile and fluid movements. Upshaw can change directions suddenly and uses very little wasted movements to do so. His quick twitch athleticism and burst allows him to mix up his speed and power moves with the best of them, as he completely knocked OT Matt McCants to the ground with a fantastic push-pull technique. His arm extension and handwork is very good and allows him to disengage suddenly, making him an absolute nightmare to defend one on one. Upshaw is the best player in Mobile in my opinion and is slowly staking claim to a Top 10 pick…he could have a Von Miller type impact if put into the right situation.

Linebackers

I really didn’t get too great look at the linebackers from the South squad today. However, both Zach Brown and Keenan Robinson impressed me in coverage. Robinson used his length very well and Brown looks very natural/comfortable in man to man, making him a good weakside linebacker candidate. I still think Brown is a liability in run defense however and question his overall instincts, but I am excited to see him compete in the game and see how he fares in this area.

 Defensive Backs

Antonio Allen (South Carolina) was/is a player I am extremely excited to see and watch in the coming days of practice. I didn’t get to see much today but did see him get physical and use his long arms and length well in coverage. Allen is a player I am higher on than most.

Dwight Bentley (Louisianna-Lafayette) definitely caught my eye today. He is light at 173 lbs. but I like his ability to read and recognize routes. He made a great break on the ball and did a great job at closing to a point rather than his man, almost coming up with the interception. He doesn’t seem to be backing down or shying away from the big stage and has come here to compete this week, which is something I really like and appreciate from a small school player.

Brandon Boykin (Georgia) was another cornerback on the South squad who impressed me today. Boykin displayed a certain physicality and scrapiness to his play today and is really competing and fighting to finish drills on a consistent basis. The effort and passion is definitley evident and his athletic ability is starting to turn some heads. He does a great job mirroring or shadowing his man and does a great job sticking in their hip pocket down the field. Boykin is a player who can contribute on special teams instantly and line up over the slot in a nickel back type role. He is starting to win me over and has impressed me so far this week.

Casey Hayward (Vanderbilt) was another impressive corner. On film, Heyward always seems to be around the football. I really appreciate his mirroring skills as well, as he reads his receivers movements and has a great feel for when his man is about to break into his route. Hayward did get a little over-aggressive however as he got a little grabby downfield after 5 yards, which will not fly in the NFL. I will be watching this closely over the next couple days.

Janoris Jenkins (North Alabama) was burned by former team-mate Chris Rainey early but responded well on his very next rep by squatting on the route and taking away inside positioning. This showed me that Jenkins is a competitor who is also very savvy in figuring out how to best defend his man by not allowing to get beat twice by the same move. Jenkins has had a good week and I am excited to hear more on how he has interviewed with teams.

Markelle Martin (Oklahoma State) is a very fluid athlete with nice footwork. His quickness and acceleration allowed him to undercut a route and nearly make an interception during team. One of the questions on Martin coming in was his ability in coverage so this was a very positive thing to see from him. If Martin can continue to look good in coverage he could secure his spot in the 2nd round.

Ryan Steed (Furman) has been unimpressive and overmatched in my opinion. He’s not physical enough and is struggling to break down and change directions. I am not too big of a fan of his from what I have seen. However, when the lights go on Saturday you never know what can happen…he will need to do a lot however to change my stance on him.

Biggest Winners:

1. LB Courtney Upshaw Alabama

2. QB Brandon Weeden Oklahoma State

3. WR Juron Criner Arizona

Biggest Losers:

1. QB Nick Foles Arizona

2. WR Jeff Fuller Texas A&M

3. CB Ryan Steed Furman

Sorry this posting was so late…had to work and didn’t get around to starting this until later, hope you enjoyed nonetheless!

-Brandon

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

w

Connecting to %s