Underclassmen Update

Lots of guys making it official.

* RG3 is in.  We all expected this.  Things will never get better for him.  His C, top WR, and RB are all Seniors.  Next year might have been a step back for the team.  Legit chance for RG3 to be the second overall pick.  Won’t be the Rams taking him.  They’d have to trade the choice.

* LSU corner Morris Claiborne is in.  My top CB and a better player than Patrick Peterson.  Should be a Top 5 pick.  If the Rams stay at #2, could go there.  Gifted athlete with elite coverage ability and ball skills. How good is he?  ‘Bama threw at Honey Badger all night in the title game.  They didn’t want any part of Claiborne.

* Montee Ball is staying at Wisconsin.  This move threw me off.  Ball is a workhorse RB.  Those guys have a limited shelf life.  He should have come out.  He got a 3rd round grade back from the advisory committee and didn’t feel that was good enough.  I’m not sure Ball will improve much in 2012, but maybe he can.

Speaking of Wisconsin players, QB Russell Wilson has made it official that he’s pursuing an NFL career.  Very important move by him.  Wilson is also part of the Colorado Rockies organization.  He’s struggled in baseball, but does have major league talent.  NFL teams were not going to use a pick on him unless he made it absolutely clear that he was committed to the NFL.  Back in 1994 Charlie Ward told the NFL that he would see where he was picked in that draft and the NBA draft and would decide his future that way.  NFL teams don’t waste early picks on guys that “might play” so Charlie went to the NBA.  I firmly believe that had he committed to the NFL, he’d have been picked in the 3rd or 4th round and would have had a shot to make it as a QB.

* Toledo star Eric Page reversed course and is coming out early.  Love Page as a player, but I don’t think this is a wise move.  There is a crowded group of WRs already.  There are guys like T.Y. Hilton and Joe Adams that as speedy WRs/RSs who are already in the draft.  Page is a highly productive player, both as a receiver and RS.  He’s got NFL talent.  Just don’t think coming out early was the best decision for a guy like him coming from Toledo.

* WR Russell Sheppard is leaving LSU early.  Not a shocker.  Very talented player, but had some issues while he was there.  Never lived up to his talent and will have character concerns for NFL teams to sort through.

* We have a pair of TEs that declared.  Dwayne Allen from Clemson is my #1 TE.  Gifted receiver and natural athlete.  Complete package with big time potential.  Probably should be a 1st round pick.  Georgia’s Orson Charles also is in.  I have him as my #2 TE.  He’s move of a WR/TE hybrid.  Lacks ideal size.  He also is a gifted receiver and athlete.  Charles won’t fit all 32 offenses, though.  Must go to a team that will use him creatively.

* Wisconsin C Peter Konz will head to the NFL.  Outstanding player.  Big guy at 6’5, 315 and there are some teams that covet big, strong Centers.  Konz missed games every year due to injury so durability is a concern.  I look forward to studying tape of him.

* Rutgers WR Mohamed Sanu is coming out.  Real interesting player.  Good size at 6’2, 215.  Versatile.  Also saw time as a QB in some sets.  Was 8-18-207 with 4 TDs as a passer in his career.  Ran for 9 career TDs.  This year he caught 115 passes (with 7 TD grabs).  Had 210 catches in his career.  Probably a 2nd round player.

* South Carolina CB Stephon Gilmore is heading to the NFL.  Very talented cover corner.  Another versatile guy.  He’s played on offense and been a KOR/PR.  Gilmore had 4 INTs this year and 8 for his career.  1st round potential.

* LaMichael James made his decision official.  He had to come out after getting knocked around some this year.  Won’t be a super high pick, but James has the speed and quickness to be an excellent role player in the NFL.  Also a good RS.

* * * * *

I recently got asked about several players:

Brock Osweiler–QB
A.J. Jenkins–WR
Kendall Reyes–DT
Winston Guy–S

Osweiler is intriguing because he’s still relatively new to football.  Talented, productive QB for Arizona State.  He’s 6’8, which is somewhat bad.  QBs that tall generally don’t fare well in the NFL.  I have concerns about him beyond that.  In the ASU bowl game there was an odd moment when the punt team started to come on and Osweiler told them to stay off.  You like take-charge QBs, but if the coaches send the punt team on, they punt.  Osweiler is a very emotional guy and that got the best of him at times.  I see him as a project and not someone to go early.

Jenkins is a very good receiver prospect.  Won’t go super early because he’s not as dynamic as some other guys, but definitely has NFL talent.

Reyes is a guy who I was excited to watch because he posted good numbers.  The tape simply wasn’t impressive.  Didn’t do much for me at all.  Very disappointing.

Guy is a box Safety type.  Played as a S/LB at times.  You always wonder with those guys how well they run and if they can cover.  I like Guy as a possible late round pick, but don’t see him as anything special.

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One Response to Underclassmen Update

  1. Patrick says:

    Hey Tommy, I wanted to get your opinion on Chaz Powell, we went to high school together and have hung out a few times, his QB in HS was my best friends lil bro. Anyway, I know you’re a PSU fan too and I was wondering if you thought he had any chance to be drafted in the later rounds. I imagine if he was it would be mostly for his RS ability, but what do you think? Thanks!

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