First Place

The Giants are a bad team. Playing on the road on a short week, that bad team somehow was up 21-10 over the Eagles with five minutes left in the game. Yikes.

Because weird things tend to happen when the Eagles and Giants get together, the game was just getting started. Carson Wentz led a pair of TD drives and Brandon Graham sealed the game with a strip sack.

Eagles 22, Giants 21.

That’s a crushing loss if you’re the Giants. A win throws you into playoff contention. A loss sends you in search of a Top 5 pick.

The Eagles are now atop the NFC East for a few days. If Dallas loses on Sunday, the Eagles stay in first place.

While winning is fun, this was a troubling performance. There are a lot of issues to pick through. Since it is game night and late, we’ll skip over that stuff for now and focus on the positives.

Wentz threw for 359 yards and led his team on an impressive comeback. He was sloppy at times, but came alive when the team really needed him. Wentz’s game-winning TD pass was a thing of beauty.

That is an absolute dime. That’s what you want from your star QB with the game on the line.

And what a friggin’ catch. Boston Scott, former practice squad player, came up big in the clutch. Ironically, the Giants had a chance to put the game away, but former first round pick Evan Engram couldn’t make the catch.

The Eagles are a highly flawed football team, but even when they are lying on the sidewalk and left for dead, they can look down in the gutter and see the Giants. I guess we can always be thankful for that.

Travis Fulgham had another big game, going 5-73. He couldn’t get his TD, though. That three-game streak comes to an end. John Hightower made a critical play late in the game, hauling in a 59-yard bomb that jump started a scoring drive. Greg Ward had a TD catch. Even JJAW had a catch for a first down. The young guys came to play.

No Ertz, no Goedert, no problem. Richard Rodgers went 6-85 and had some crucial catches. His 30-yard catch and run on the final drive got the Eagles into scoring position.

I’ve been complaining about the front office brining back Vinny Curry, but he came up big on the Giants final drive. Curry drew a holding penalty on first down and then recovered the fumble after Graham’s strip sack.

The Eagles defense had 3 sacks and 3 takeaways. There were inconsistent, but as Jim Schwartz will tell you, they were good enough to win.

The game featured the play of the year. Just watch.

That is glorious.

Enjoy the win for now. This team has a lot of issues, injuries and otherwise. The Eagles are not a good team right now.

But they are in first place.

Enjoy it.

__

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment | Back to top

Almost

The Eagles almost beat the Ravens. John Hightower almost caught a big pass on the opening drive. Miles Sanders almost caught a TD in the first half. Jake Elliott almost hit a field goal at the end of the half.

Almost.

The Eagles came up short in all of those areas and fell to 1-4-1. You can be frustrated with another tough loss or disappointed in another sloppy performance. That wasn’t my takeaway.

I came away impressed with Carson Wentz and the Eagles. I am not ignoring the fact they got down 17-0 and looked terrible. You do have to look at what happened closely. Jamon Brown made his first start with the team and he was awful. Jack Dricoll was the RT. If you’re the coaches, who do you help? And then you’ve got Jordan Mailata on his own.

The Eagles offense was a mess in the first half. The pass protection was terrible. Wentz took a beating. He made one terrific throw to Hightower for what should have been a huge play, but it was dropped. Wentz and Sanders weren’t on the same page and a TD turned into a frustrating incompletion. The Ravens shut down the Eagles ground game.

The Eagles defense played very up and down. They would shut down Baltimore and get them into third and long, only to give up a play that moved the chains. You could see potential, but the players didn’t execute in critical moments.

The Eagles trailed 17-0 at the half.

They did get some life late in the half when Jalen Hurts got mixed in. The Ravens had to figure out if he was a decoy or part of the play and that momentary hesitation helped the offense have some success. Once they got going, they were able to get in a rhythm.

The Eagles dominated the second half, outscoring Baltimore 28-13. There weren’t any fluky turnovers. The Eagles outgained them 270-195. And this was a very banged up version of the Eagles. More guys got hurt in the game so you had Brett Toth playing RT. You had Elijah Riley playing safety. Someone named Jason Croom played TE and caught a TD.

It would have been easy for the coaches to pull the key guys and just play the backups. The Eagles have a game this Thursday. Why not protect Wentz and key starters? Instead the coaches left Wentz in the game and kept trying to win this week. There were times when I questioned this, but as I saw the Eagles claw their way back into the game, it made some sense.

They wanted to see Wentz and his teammates wake up and get going. If you have an abysmal showing and then play on a short week, that can be tough mentally/emotionally. Wentz and his young teammates can feel good about the way they played in the second half.

Vince Lombardi used to preach to his teams that they didn’t lose, they just ran out of time. That is kind of the way today felt. The Eagles ran out of time.

There are plenty of mistakes to discuss, but I’m more interested in the fact that Wentz and his teammates never gave up.

Travis Fulgham had another big game, going 6-75-1. He is the first Eagles receiver to catch a TD in three straight games since Terrell Owens back in 2004. That’s something to build on.

Wentz was sloppy early, but that was for a reason.

He made some terrific throws and had some great moments. Wentz had a 40-yard run in the game. He kept competing, despite taking a major beating. I’m sure that had to inspire his teammates.

Hightower bounced back from his awful drop to haul in a 50-yard bomb.

Sanders had a 74-yard run that resulted in a TD. He fumbled at the end of the run and JJAW fell on it for the score. Great run by Sanders and great hustle by JJ to be there to get the ball.

The DL did a lot of good things today. They kept Lamar Jackson under pressure. He overcame it a few times. That’s what special players do.

Alex Singleton led the team in tackles and seemed to play well. That was encouraging.

If the Eagles can bottle up what they did in the second half, they will win on Thursday night. If the Eagles make the kinds of mistakes they did in the first half, the Giants are going to get the win.

In the last two weeks we’ve seen this team show a lot of heart. They faced a pair of elite defenses and put up 57 combined points. They just need to quit making the key mistakes that have cost them all season long.

It also might help to get some good news on the injury front. Let’s hope that guys who left the game today aren’t seriously hurt and that some guys who have been missing can make it back into the lineup.

_

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment | Back to top

Game Preview – BAL at PHI

Vinny Curry is going to earn his spot in the Eagles Hall of Fame. The Eagles activated him for Sunday’s game with the Ravens and since the team is already deep on the defensive line I assume they are going to move Curry to linebacker or receiver or right guard or cornerback. If he can play well in his new position and jump start the Eagles 2020 season, Eagles immortality will be his.

Or the Eagles are a poorly run team and they brought back a 32-year old DE to torture me.

I’ll let you decide.

I do not feel good heading into Sunday. See if you notice a pattern.

Dwayne Haskins – 27 points
Joe Burrow – 23 points
Nick Mullens – 20 points

Jared Goff – 37 points
Ben Rothlisberger – 38 points

Young, unproven QBs have averaged 23.3 points vs the Eagles defense. Talented veteran QBs have averaged 37.5 points. That doesn’t make me feel good about the guys in green shutting down Lamar Jackson, one of the most dynamic playmakers in the league.

Before you accuse me of being too negative, I will talk about a positive development. We will get to see a good LB on Sunday. Shaun Bradley, taking the place of the injured Duke Riley? No, I was actually talking about Ravens LB L.J. Fort. He was with the Eagles last year, but they were so deep and so talented at the LB position that they cut him.

Okay, I think I’ve vented enough.

I do think the Eagles can win this game. Carson Wentz looked like his old self at times last week. If he truly gets going, that makes the Eagles dangerous every week. A good QB can carry a team. Travis Fulgham looked like the real deal and a hot QB paired with a hot receiver makes a team even more dangerous. The Steelers have one of the best defenses in the league and the Eagles put up 29 points on them.

That will be more challenging this week. The Eagles will have a new RG, with Jamon Brown taking over for Matt Pryor, and Jack Driscoll at RT. Baltimore blitzes more than any other team in the league and that will put tremendous pressure on the line. They have to read the blitzes and get them blocked. One missed assignment can lead to a disaster. The Eagles average 2.2 turnovers per game so that doesn’t bode well.

Baltimore gave up more than 130 yards on the ground in two of five games this year. That’s odd. A big day from Miles Sanders and the Eagles ground game would be a huge help to the chances of winning this game.

The Ravens offense is up and down. They are only 24th in the league in yards this year, but they average 5.6 yards per carry as a team and they are 8th in scoring. Jackson is coming off a sloppy performance. He was 19-37-180 as a passer and just 2-3 as a runner. You could argue that might affect his confidence this week, but I’m guessing it will just fire him up.

This isn’t a good matchup for the Eagles. The Ravens are very creative on offense. You have to be assignment sound and very disciplined to handle this attack. The Eagles back seven struggled with this against the Rams and Niners. The Steelers mixed in a few things and they worked well.

While I’m not happy about the return of Curry, I am interested to see what Parks can do. The Eagles had big plans for him. It will be interesting to see if Parks, Rodney McLeod and K’Von Wallace can make some plays. That is a talented trio of safeties.

Parks could be key to this game. He can play in the box and get the job done. If you want to go with a Big Nickel vs the Ravens run game, Parks becomes critical. That player must be able to get to the ball and make tackles.

If the Eagles are going to pull off the upset, they will need someone on the defense to have a breakout game. Anyone have Nate Gerry as that guy? I’m going to hold off on making that bet. The entire defense will have to play smarter than last week. Missed tackles and dumb penalties really hurt them in that game.

As I mentioned earlier, I don’t feel good about this game. That said, 2020 is one weird year and nothing will really shock me.

I am excited to see the young guys in action. Fulgham has shown tremendous potential. Baltimore has arguably the best secondary in the league. If he can play well against these guys, that is a good sign for the future. We’ll get to see Driscoll and Nate Herbig tested by an aggressive defense. We’ll see Bradley and Wallace playing against a challenging offense.

No one game is going to give us answers about the young players. But it can give us clues. Let’s hope we get some good ones on Sunday.

As for the score, I’m going Baltimore, 31-19.

_

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment | Back to top

Senior Bowl Day 3

There was rain in Mobile on Thursday so the practices were moved from Ladd-Peebles Stadium over to the University of South Alabama’s indoor practice facility. USA isn’t a huge school, but that is a really nice facility.

THE NORTH

Jeremy Chinn measured in at 6-3, 219. You would think that makes him a box safety, but that’s not the case. He has played in the slot, in the box and back deep. Chinn is good on TEs with his size and athleticism.

He got matched up with bigger WRs today in some of the drills. Chinn was able to be physical with them and stay close. I was hoping to see him against smaller, speedier guys, but that just didn’t happen.

***

Adam Trautman is one of the top TEs in this class. He has good size at 6-5, 251. He is a good athlete and terrific receiver. He made one really impressive grab today when he went up for the ball. You love big guys who can still go up and get the ball.

Trautman has excellent hands. He catches the ball very smoothly. I do not have a good feel for his blocking ability. But the team that picks him will want Trautman for his ability to catch passes.

Here is a clip from earlier in the week.

***

WR Denzel Mims has had a great week and continued that on Thursday. He is 6-3 and has 33-inch arms so that gives him a big catch radius. Mims does a great job of finding the ball and then extending for it. He also adjusts to the ball well.

Mims has definitely helped himself this week.

***

WR James Proche has been terrific this week. He gets open and seems to catch everything thrown his way. I think he’s best suited for the slot. Here is a clip of him making a catch today. The Auburn CB actually made contact with me on this play. It isn’t my video, but I was just a few feet away. You really appreciate how big and fast these young men are when they come at you full speed.

***

KJ Hill is another receiver who is great at getting open and then seems to catch anything that is near  him. He made one impressive catch in traffic today and then made one that words just don’t do justice.

Wow.

***

QB Shea Patterson hasn’t wowed anyone this week. He did make one beautiful throw on the move today. You can see his physical gifts. He does need a lot of work, though. He’ll be an interesting project for some team.

***

LB Malik Harrison had an impressive pick on a pass thrown over the middle. If you watch Ohio State, you’ll know that’s not an accident. Harrison broke up 4 passes each of the past two seasons.

***

I went up to C Nick Harris after practice to get a closer look at his frame. He weighed in at 293 on Tuesday and I was curious to see if he had room to add more bulk. Harris looks pretty maxed out. He might add a few pounds, but he’s not getting much bigger.

______________________________________________________________

THE SOUTH

I haven’t said much about Justin Herbert so far but he is the best QB in Mobile. He has the strongest arm and just throws lasers. When he grips it ‘n rips it, that is a thing of beauty.

Herbert could be as high as a Top 10 pick. He has all the physical tools you would want in a franchise QB. My concern with him involves decision-making.

Thursday was a good day for Herbert. He made some terrific throws. He showed the ability to throw darts, but also put good touch on some passes. He also made a beautiful throw on the move to the right side.

***

My ranking of the QBs in Mobile:

1 – Justin Herbert
2 – Jordan Love
3 – Jalen Hurts
4 – Shea Patterson
5 – Steven Montez
6 – Anthony Gordon

***

Jalen Hurts throws a nice ball. He doesn’t have the same type of arm as Herbert, but he can put some RPMs on the ball. I’ve been most impressed by his touch throws. Hurts throws a very catchable pass. He’s also accurate when lofting the ball to a specific target.

***

RB Antonio Gibson also played some WR at Memphis. He is 6-1, 223 and his legs are definitely RB legs. He is thick and muscular.

Gibson has been pretty good as a pass catcher in Mobile, but he has had a couple of disappointing drops. He does run well and has a chance to be an excellent role player for an NFL team.

***

Florida DE Jonathan Greenard showed off his speed today. Greenard lined up on both the right and left side. He got by OTs on both sides by flying off the edge. It looked like he also got some reps at LB.

***

Safety Kyle Dugger continued his great week. Today he lined up in the middle and then came up quickly on a run play. Dugger punched the ball out of the RB’s hands.

Dugger has shown the ability to cover, tackle and make plays. Big time performance from him this week.

***

DT Robert Windsor had a “wow” moment when he got an OG off balance and slung him to the ground. The OG handled the situation the right way. He got Windsor off balance on the next play and put him on the ground. I think it was Damien Lewis from LSU, but my angle was somewhat blocked so I couldn’t be sure.

***

Jauan Jennings is one of my favorite receivers in Mobile. He’s been okay this week, but hasn’t really stood out. Jennings had a good day on Thursday, catching a lot of passes and looking good in doing so.

He had a couple of odd moments. Jennings caught a pass in the end zone and then tossed the ball to a guy standing to my right. There was an NFL scout on my left. He asked the guy if he was friends with Jennings. The guy said “no” and had no idea why Jennings did that. The scout had a puzzled look on his face.

Earlier in the day, Jennings caught a pass for a TD, spun the ball on the ground and then slapped hands with another person beside me. Totally random.

Jennings has a big personality and was trying to have some fun. Some teams won’t have a problem with that. Others will point out this was a form of a job interview and those were strange things to do.

_

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment | Back to top

Senior Bowl Day 2

The North was the first team on the field today so let’s start with them.

THE NORTH

WR Denzel Mims from Baylor was the offensive standout on Wednesday. Mims, 6-3, 206, was very productive in college with 168 career catches and 28 TD receptions. He made plays all over the field today.

Mims started off by catching short passes. He showed good strength and was able to play through contact. That is important for a receiver with his size. It wasn’t all small ball. Mims was able to get deep multiple times and haul in long passes.

***

UCLA runner Joshua Kelley has been impressive this week. He has ideal size at 5-11, 214. That makes him big enough to have some power and break tackles, but also small enough to still move well and be elusive.

Kelley had multiple runs in the team drills when he got loose for good gains. He showed excellent vision and burst. You just watch him run and he is impressive.

As you are seeing with both SF and KC, RBs with some juice can make a huge difference in the run game. Damien Williams, Raheem Mostert, Matt Breida and Tevin Coleman all have above average speed. Give them a hole and they can deliver big plays.

Pure speed can be overrated at RB, but the ability to burst through a hole and create some separation makes a world of difference.

***

There were officials on the field today and they threw a lot of flags on DBs.

Terrell Burgess from Utah and Davaris Davis from Auburn were also offenders. Burgess was too handsy for much of the day. Davis drew a flag or two.

It is good for officials to get out there and let the players know they can’t grab and push receivers around. You want to see how the guys perform in a true football setting. That means playing by the rules.

***

Ohio State DT Davon Hamilton was dominant in some of the team drills. He blew up multiple run plays by just driving blockers backward. Hamilton is 6-4, 327 and can just overwhelm blockers at times. He might remind you of a Linval Joseph type of player.

***

Washington C Nick Harris got pushed around by Hamilton at times. Harris is only 293 pounds so bigger guys are a real challenge for him. Harris also had a bad snap.

Before you get too down on him, watch this.

Harris has some special traits. He won’t fit every team, but some will really like him.

***

DL Jason Strowbridge had another strong day. He batted down 2 passes and showed the ability to get off blocks and be disruptive.

After practice, Strowbridge talked about how the coaches are moving  him around, using him at 1-technique, 3-technique and 5-technique. Rather than being frustrated, he sees this as a chance to show he can make plays anywhere on the line. Strowbridge has helped himself this week.

***

CB Troy Pride from Notre Dame was up and down. He had tight coverage early on, but then gave up a long TD. Pride was actually in pretty good position. He just didn’t play the ball well. After the rep, a coach pulled him aside to talk about what he needed to do to win the rep. Being close isn’t enough. You need to find the ball. He did have a nice pass break-up after that talk.

***

Hakeem Adeniji played LT at Kansas, but he is only 6-4, 302 so NFL teams may think of him more as an OG. Adeniji stood out to me today in the 1-on-1 drills. He was able to stonewall multiple rushers. Adeniji can really lock on and stick with his defender. He definitely impressed me.

***

I had concerns about Cal ILB Evan Weaver coming into this week. He was incredibly productive this year. He is a tackling machine. Weaver was good today on run plays that came at him.

Coverage is the issue. Weaver is stiff and just doesn’t move well when he’s trying to cover a RB or a TE. I was hoping he would prove me wrong, but Weaver has to get better there to make it in the NFL.

***

Wyoming ILB Logan Wilson has impressed me. He shows the ability to get off blocks and find the ball. He also looked good in coverage. Wilson played safety early on in college and still has good cover skills. Wilson picked off 10 career passes, very impressive for a LB.

***

LB Zack Baun had a terrific year for Wisconsin. He racked up 12.5 sacks and was a regular force off the edge. Baun measured in at 6-3, 240 so he’s playing more ILB this week. The results haven’t been pretty.

Baun has really struggled with taking on blockers. OLBs play in space. They usually get to attack. ILBs have to read the flow of a play before knowing what to do. Baun is a talented player, but the switch has caused him real problems.

***

WR Chase Claypool is huge at 6-4, 229. The Notre Dame star also plays big. He’s able to get the best of CBs who try to press him. Some big WRs try to be finesse. Claypool is smart and uses his size to his advantage. Claypool has caught the ball well in the first couple of practices.

***

WR Quartney Davis had multiple drops on Wednesday.

***

Antonio Gandy-Golden was up and down. He got deep and hauled in a long pass. Later, he got behind a CB and dropped the pass. That was a good throw from Shea Patterson and should have been a fairly routine catch.

One note on the TD…the player AGG beat was CB Essang Bassey. He has really struggled both days with getting beat deep. His lack of speed has been a glaring problem.

***

Safety Alohi Gillman had some good moments in coverage. He was able to be physical with receivers on short routes. He had good downfield coverage as well. Teams will be impressed with his man cover skills.

He was playing deep safety in a team drill and tried to come over and break up a pass on the sideline, but got banged up on the play. He walked off the field so hopefully he’s okay.

_____________________________________________________________

THE SOUTH

For most of the day, the OL got the best of the DL. It surprised me how little DL were winning in drills.

Then DT Robert Windsor got going. The Penn State star became a disruptive force, beating blockers with quickness and strength. He was at his best in the team drills. Windsor even lined up at DE for some snaps.

Windsor, like the other DL, got off to a slow start. During one drill he was taking on a double-team. They destroyed him, just driving him off the ball.

As the day went along, Windsor got better and became disruptive.

***

Stephen Sullivan played both WR and TE at LSU. He measured in at 6-5, 245 so he’s obviously playing TE in Mobile and will be there in the NFL.

Sullivan only caught 46 passes in college so he’s not exactly a household name. Sullivan really stood out today. He showed good speed in getting downfield and he caught the ball really well. Sullivan tracked the ball well and showed soft hands.

This is a great example of a player coming to an all-star game and making the most of his opportunity. He wasn’t a starter at LSU, but that’s because they had so much talent. Sullivan has NFL ability. He just needed a chance to show it.

***

Kyle Dugger, the small school star, came up with a terrific INT in a coverage drill. He has shown that he can play with the big school players. Beyond that, Dugger is showing that he might just be able to play safety in the NFL. At 6-1, 217, some think he’s best suited for LB. His cover skills have impressed me.

***

Florida receiver Van Jefferson had another strong day. He runs good routes and is able to get open. He catches the ball naturally and easily. Jefferson is a polished receiver. He can win with skill as well as athleticism.

***

WR Devin Duvernay had another good day. He was able to catch a long TD pass. He runs well and has good hands.

***

OL John Simpson had a tough day on Tuesday. Thankfully he bounced back on Wednesday and looked good. Simpson looked much better in the 1-on-1 drills, winning many of his reps. He was able to move well laterally and hold his ground vs power moves.

***

Darnay Holmes had another strong day on short and medium routes. The UCLA corner is quick and aggressive. He plays the ball well. His big issue is deep speed.

***

CB Reggie Robinson from Tulsa had a good day. He covered receivers tightly and was impressive in the 1-on-1 drills.

***

Dane Jackson from Pitt had his struggles with the officials. He was flagged for holding and pass interference on multiple plays. Jackson started off well, but was up and down as the day went along.

***

DT Marlon Davidson was really good on Tuesday, but was in a walking boot today. Hopefully that is nothing too serious.

_

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment | Back to top

Senior Bowl Day 1

THE SOUTH

There were some DL standouts on the field today

One guy who caught my eye was DE Terrell Lewis. He measured in at 6-5, 258 and then had a strong day on the field. Lewis showed explosive quickness off the ball. He was able to win other ways as well. He beat one OT with a good spin move. Lewis also used his hands well and showed good strength.

Lewis has had injury issues at Alabama. He only played 14 games and only had 7 career sacks. Lewis sure looks the part and he’s got the kind of size and skill to appeal to all 32 teams. He is scheme-proof. You just have to figure out if he can stay healthy and be more productive in the NFL. His potential is huge.

***

South Carolina DT Javon Kinlaw might be the first Senior Bowl player to be drafted this year. He measured in at 6-5 and 315 pounds. He’s got big hands and long arms. I stood next to him on the practice field and he is really put together.

Kinlaw had a good day. He said one of his goals in coming to the Senior Bowl was to show he could be more of a pass rusher. He had 10 sacks over the past two years, which is fine for a college DT. Kinlaw thinks he can do better than that.

He was able to beat blockers with both power and athleticism.

Blockers are going to have their hands full with him this week.

***

UCLA corner Darnay Holmes had a good day. Holmes (5-10, 192) was physical and aggressive with receivers. He battled on every rep. Holmes broke up multiple passes, using both good technique and physicality.

The issue with Holmes is that he lacks deep speed. He was at his best playing in the slot or on short routes.

***

WR Van Jefferson from Florida had a good day. The 6-2, 197 receiver ran good routes and showed the ability to get open. He had good hands and looked smooth in catching the ball.

***

DT Marlon Davidson measured in at 6-3, 297. Auburn listed him at 278 pounds during the year. Davidson played a variety of roles in college, including some standup DE. He focused on his strength and looked dominant at times. He can play DT in the 4-3 or he could be a 3-4 DE. Davidson is off to a good start.

***

Pitt’s Dane Jackson is a CB I’m high on. He had a good first day of practice. Jackson is a physical man-to-man press corner. He was able to get his hands on receivers and to stick with them. Jackson broke up at least a couple of passes. He was a good hitter and tackler on his game tape.

***

Kentucky OG Logan Stenberg was stout in the 1-on-1 drills. After practice, he talked about getting better this week and learning from his mistakes. You love to hear a prospect realizing that he’s got things to work on and then actually doing something about it.

***

Clemson OL John Simpson had a bad day. Bad. He got pushed back in 1-on-1 drills like a rag doll. He then false started twice in a row in 11-on-11 drills. The entire stadium groaned on the second one. Hopefully he’ll bounce back with a good showing on Wednesday.

***

Small school standout Kyle Dugger broke up a couple of passes. The Lenior-Rhyne star played safety in college, but at 6-1, 217 he might be moving to LB. I will keep my eyes on him this week. He looked like he belonged with SEC and Big Ten competition on the first day. Really fun prospect to watch on game tape.

***

Another small school player is OT Ben Bartch from St. John’s. He was 6-6, 308 and looked really put together. Bartch struggled in the practice. He got pushed around multiple times. Not all small school players can handle the transition to facing bigger and stronger competition.

***

I thought WR Devin Duvernay showed good hands. He plucked the ball and looked natural as a receiver. Duvernay has an interesting build at 5-11, 202. He would be an interesting fit in the slot.

***

Georgia Southern CB Kindle Vildor was very up and down. He looked terrible in the 1-on-1 drills. He played much better in the team drills and even had a couple of INTs.

____________________________________________________

THE NORTH

The best small school receiver in Mobile is Liberty’s Antonio Gandy-Golden. He measured in at 6-4, 222 and had a good day of practice.

AGG had good hands and made some impressive catches. He didn’t look over-matched when facing the big school DBs.

***

Wake Forest CB Essang Bassey really struggled with deep routes. He is a tough, aggressive corner on underneath routes, but multiple receivers were able to get behind him.

***

Notre Dame CB Troy Pride covered well, short and long. He did show good speed and handled deep routes well. Good start.

***

OT Matt Peart from UConn had a good day. He came in at 6-7, 310 and then stood out at times in the 1-on-1 drills. Peart played both RT and LT. I thought he looked more comfortable on the right side. He was smooth and able to move his feet well. He was effective on the left side, but not as good.

***

DL Jason Strowbridge had an outstanding day. He measured in at 6-4, 267. The coaches used him at DT and DE. There was one sequence where he just killed OG Ben Bredeson. Just overwhelmed him. Strowbridge showed the ability to win with quickness and power. Really good start for him.

***

SMU receiver James Proche had a good day. He is a gifted pass catcher with athleticism and playmaking ability. He measured in at 5-11, 196. Some will see him as a slot receiver. He might be able to play on the outside for some.

***

I had high hopes for Syracuse DE Alton Robinson. He is the quickest/fastest pass rusher on the North team, but that didn’t show up on Tuesday. He wasn’t bad by any stretch, but failed to stand out like I hoped he would.

***

Notre Dame WR Chase Claypool (6-4, 229) was up and down. He mostly caught the ball well, but did have one bad drop.

***

TCU RB Darius Anderson made a good cut in a team drill and then showed serious burst to get up the field for a good gain.

***

Washington OC Nick Harris impressed me on tape. He only measured in at 6-1, 293. Harris is athletic and can fit in the right scheme, but that size is an issue. Beyond that, he didn’t look to be in the best shape. Still, his game tape is impressive.

_

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment | Back to top

Shocker – Mayock to the Raiders

We all wondered if this would ever happen. It did.

Why would such a smart man go to such a dysfunctional organization?

Mayock and coach Jon Gruden have been friends since 1995. That’s when Gruden was the offensive coordinator for the Eagles. Mayock lives in Philly and the two obviously met and hit it off.

Apparently they’ve talked football for the past 23 years and built a strong relationship over that time. The Raiders clearly need help on the personnel side. Reggie McKenzie did a strong job for them, but he wasn’t Gruden’s guy. That wasn’t going to work.

Mayock is Gruden’s guy. Mayock mentioned several times the importance of fit. He’s talked to a few teams over the years, but the fit was never right. That changed when the Raiders came to him this year.

It will be really interesting to see if this works. Mayock is very smart, hard working and a good talent evaluator. But he’s never had to deal with the practical realities of running a team.

  • The salary cap
  • Good players with off-field issues
  • Injuries
  • Organizational politics
  • Accountability to bosses, fans and the media

I would love to see Mayock thrive in this role, but Gruden loves to throw people under the bus. This will be the first time that his GM is someone he felt this strongly about so maybe Mayock can bring out the best in Gruden.

*****

This is a huge loss for the NFL Network. Mayock was great as a draft analyst. He brought knowledge and personality to the job.

Daniel Jeremiah should take on his role. Jeremiah is outstanding in his own right so it will be good to see him getting a shot to be The Man.

_

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment | Back to top

Explosive Pass Rusher Coming Out

Teams in need of a pass rusher will be happy with this news.

Polite is like a missile coming off the edge. Reminds me of a shorter DeMarcus Ware with his burst and ability to bend.

Polite is exactly what you want in today’s NFL. Put him out there and let him go get the QB. Should be a high pick.

_

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment | Back to top

Another QB to the Mix

We recently found out Oregon QB Justin Herbert will be staying in school. Teams in need of a QB got some good news today.

I watched quite a lot of Jones over the course of his career. He has NFL ability and will blow you away at times.

He also is a flawed player. His deep accuracy is an issue. He holds the ball too long at times. He also can be a questionable decision-maker.

Jones is big, strong and athletic. His speed in the open field caught more than a few defenses off-guard. He will make some wow throws that knock your socks off. There are times when he puts great touch on his passes.

The NFL reportedly gave him a 1st round grade. It will be interesting to see how early he goes.

_

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment | Back to top

2019 Draft Order

The NFL’s regular season is in the books. That means we know the draft order for the non-playoff teams…1-20.

We’ll find out the final 12 spots as the playoffs get going.

_

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment | Back to top