5’10” – 200 lbs. – 4.55e
Started eleven of thirteen games as a freshman, then all thirteen as a sophomore. Started twelve of thirteen games played as a junior, playing primarily in the slot. Experience shows up on tape. Looks a bit shorter than a typical boundary cornerback, with a thick build. Typically plays shuffle or zone coverages; not often asked to press or backpedal. Top-end speed is adequate; was able to turn and run against burners such as Brandin Cooks and Markus Wheaton. Agile enough to flip his hips, so more press-man coverage could be a possibility. Overall play recognition is sound; understands his responsibilities. Confident, competitive player. Employs a very conservative brand of coverage; gives his opponents generous cushions and permits excessive separation on breaks. When in position, however, exhibits aggressive ball skills, albeit with mediocre hands to secure the interception. Looks comfortable when asked to play off of blocks when defending against screens or outside rushing attempts; not necessarily the stoutest player, but is nonetheless able to effectively position himself and locate the ball. Not afraid to mix it up against ballcarriers, but often forgets his tackling technique and simply dives low. Aggressiveness versus the run carries over into his pass defense, but fortunately does not extend to holding or committing defensive pass interference. Blitzes often, but pressure comes from open lanes to the passer rather than possessing the explosive movement skills necessary to blow by blockers; that said, is effective at batting down passes while rushing from the slot. Also contributed as Texas’ punt returner. An experienced, responsible, and physical cornerback with adequate physical tools, Diggs should be able to contribute to most teams in some capacity, whether as a boundary cornerback in a cover-two scheme or a slot cornerback in a man scheme. Prior exposure to a variety of roles should help him acclimate quickly to the pro game. While his coverage skills aren’t outstanding by any stretch, he should be able to endear himself to defensive coaches which favor conservative shells; playing in the slot in 2013 highlighted some of his strengths and masked some of his flaws. A relatively safe pick given his experience, mental tools, and on-field temperament, but who may lack considerable upside due to his physical limitations and extensive experience playing for a major program.
Games watched: Oklahoma St. (’12), Oregon St. (’12), Texas Tech (’13)
6’3” – 297 lbs. – 5.15e
Redshirted in 2010; started every game in each of the following seasons and will enter his senior year having started forty games. Combination of height and weight is adequate for the center position, although his frame looks nearly maxed-out; arms look a bit short. Stronger than he looks, with the ability to anchor against nose tackles and generate push in the running game; dominated massive Washington nose tackle Danny Shelton as a junior. Rarely requires additional help from offensive guards. Does a good job of keeping his feet churning after initial contact. Aggressive, even if he doesn’t end many plays with pancakes. Works hard to sustain until the whistle; has a strong grip which allows him to lock onto opponents. Gets good arm extension. Assignment-sound in pass protection, blocking the appropriate player and switching when necessary. Durable, pro-ready, and intelligent. Makes all of the protection calls. Reliable, experienced shotgun-snapper. Not a freak athlete, but is athletic enough to get out in front of screens, with a great work rate. Looks more comfortable when he’s asked to make second-level blocks on linebackers without pulling; straight-line speed is above-average. Ultimately, should be able to fit into either a man or zone blocking scheme. Height gives him natural leverage, but occasionally squanders it by getting too upright. Hands find their way outside too frequently. A bit more comfortable versus the bull rush than against quicker, gap-shooting defensive tackles; susceptible to penetration to either side. Lacks a forceful punch to jolt defenders. Hasn’t played any other positions, limiting his appeal as a potential swing reserve. Should certainly be considered a candidate to be the first center selected in this year’s draft, given his highly-productive, highly-experienced collegiate career; was given some difficult assignments with the Ducks and performed admirably. Not the biggest or most mobile center, but is close to a finished product and has shown that he is capable of holding up against powerful nose tackles without help, something which allows for rare flexibility in blocking schemes; additionally, his high football IQ allows him to execute his assignments even without outstanding athleticism. Projects as a starting pivot in the pros.
Games watched: Oregon St. (’13), Stanford (’13), Washington (’13)
6’2” – 220 lbs. – 4.45e
Started four of thirteen games played in 2011, handling primary kick-return responsibilities as well. Started four of eleven games in 2012 while dealing with an injury, then appeared in all fourteen games as a junior. Has lined up all over the formation, including in the slot; plays both on and off the line of scrimmage. Size presents a physical mismatch for cornerbacks; should be able to release at the line. A bit straight-linish but boasts impressive top-end speed; capable of hitting the home run. Has done some work on reverses. Exhibits good vision with the ball in his hands. Tough player, both as a ballcarrier and as a blocker; capable of running through arm tackles. Currently more of an effort blocker than a dominant one, but has the motor and physical attributes to become a quality player in that facet. Long arms give him an impressive catch radius; however, this advantage is somewhat negated by inconsistent hands. Not the sharpest route runner at this point; needs to improve his footwork, his balance, and his explosiveness out of breaks. Also has trouble making contested catches, which could become an issue if he doesn’t gain more consistent separation by improving his route-running and diversifying his route tree. Currently, his repertoire involves a high percentage of routes in which he’s asked to come back to the quarterback (hooks, curls, comebacks), using his body to shield defenders. Also does a lot of work on screens, one aspect of his game which should translate to the next level; however, needs to come back to the ball more consistently rather than taking a passive approach. Has the speed to threaten defenses downfield; a logical option for clearing routes. Underwent shoulder surgery prior to his senior season, which will require further medical investigation. Has a desirable combination of size, length, speed, and strength which give him starting upside, but will have to be eased into the pro game given his lack of seasoning. Fortunately, his value as a ballcarrier provides an avenue by which to make contributions early in his career, whether through kick returns, reverses, or screens. Could hear his name called on the second day depending on not only the success of his senior season, but also how comfortable a team is with their ability to develop wide receivers.
Games watched: California (’13), Oregon (’13), Utah (’13)
6’5” – 276 lbs. – 4.80e
Appeared as a reserve over seven games in 2011, then in thirteen in each of the following two seasons, starting seven games as a junior. Plays five-technique on both sides of the Bulldogs’ 3-4 defense, but could go either way as a pro, gaining weight to play left end in four-man fronts or adding some to play in three-man fronts; has previously played at weights ranging from 263 to 284 pounds. Takes the occasional snap out of a two-point stance or inside at tackle. As a run defender, doesn’t always have the gap discipline he should; occasionally goes all-in to rush the passer, leaving his gap unattended. Anchor is a bit inconsistent, but flashes the ability to hold his ground against double-teams thanks to his thick build and long arms. Not likely to drive defenders into the backfield but can generally prevent himself from being blown off the ball. Has advanced instincts/play recognition given his limited starting experience. Can be turned out of the hole; a bit of a waist-bender at times. Lacks the range to pursue tosses and stretch plays to the boundary, although his motor is generally strong in all phases of the game. Needs to do a better job of protecting his legs from cut blocks; can be targeted on screen passes and might initially struggle to defend against zone concepts on rushing attempts. More of a bull-rusher than someone who can win the edge, but can also generate pressure by knifing through inside gaps; also capable of splitting the double-team. Rip move is effective if deliberate; otherwise, lacks a diverse, creative repertoire of rush moves. Mixes in a spin at times but looks lethargic. Has some athleticism but may lack the speed and closing burst to chase down quarterbacks who escape from the pocket; more likely to generate pressure than to finish with a sack. Has trouble if he doesn’t win off the snap. Gets his hands up to contest passing lanes. A bit of a mystery at this point, as physically he lacks the bulk associated with five-technique ends but has been thrust into that role with the Bulldogs and has the skillset associated with the position as opposed to resembling a 4-3 left end playing out of position. Might make sense as a left end in a four-man front which favors the two-gap jumbo ends that have become popular around the league recently. Could really boost his stock with a productive senior season, his first as a full-time starter.
Games watched: Florida (’13), Missouri (’13), Tennessee (’13)
6’4” – 252 lbs. – 4.75e
Worked in a reserve/special-teams capacity for most of 2011, starting two games at tight end. Added seventeen pounds of bulk and converted to defensive end in 2012, starting six of eleven games played; in 2013, started all thirteen games at the position. Plays on both sides of the line; has taken the occasional snap out of a two-point stance, but has an extremely small sample size in that capacity. Tall with long arms and a lanky build; has the frame to add more weight, which will be necessary if teams opt to employ him as a defensive end in an even front. Lower body appears more developed than upper body at this point; can get ragdolled around a bit, but is not easily blown off the line of scrimmage. Able to use his hands to disengage from blocks and make the tackle; radius is also impressive given his length. Pursues well to the sidelines. Run fits are questionable at this point, but flashes desirable tools. As a rusher, appears stiff when asked to bend back toward the quarterback, allowing passers to easily evade him by climbing the pocket; also gets steered wide of the mark by offensive linemen. More of a speed rusher than anything at this point; lacks both creativity and a go-to move for winning off the snap. Also problematic are his reaction times; typically not among the first defensive linemen to get off the line, which allows opponents to negate his speed by getting depth on their kickslide in advance. Has a strong motor as both a pass rusher and a run defender; plays through the whistle and exhibits active hands and feet. Far from a finished product at this point; has a long way to go in terms of strength, of technique, and of instincts. That said, has made substantial gains in terms of bulk and has acclimated well to the defensive side of the ball, which, combined with his projectable frame and athleticism, should make him a desirable project for pro coaches, whether as a defensive end in an even front or an outside linebacker in an odd front. Build might be better suited to the latter, although teams may be somewhat hesitant about asking him to learn his third position in five years. Won’t be selected as highly as former teammate and fellow offensive convert Marcus Smith but should benefit from the association. Somewhat resembles Patriots 2013 seventh-round pick Michael Buchanan.
Games watched: Central Florida (’13), Florida International (’13). Kentucky (’13)
6’1” – 230 lbs. – 4.65e
Team captain. Started on the weakside for his first two seasons, then slid inside in 2013. Reasonably thick for his height but nonetheless appears undersized for a middle linebacker and may draw interest as a potential candidate to convert back to weakside linebacker. Typically lined up in the middle of Southern California’s defense, but played on the outside on occasion. Runs well for his position; has the speed to play sideline-to-sideline and make zone drops in coverage, sometimes from the outside linebacker spot. Looks comfortable planting and driving on routes when in coverage. Has been asked to assume coverage responsibilities on slot receivers; also looks like he would be a strong candidate to cover running backs out of the flats. Not a forceful hitter, but remembers his tackling technique and doesn’t miss many opportunities. Takes on blocks a bit better than anticipated for a player of his size, at least as a downhill player; exhibits active hand use to prevent blockers from getting into his pads. When given a clear path to the quarterback, closes fairly quickly; could be effective on delay blitzes. Contributed on special-teams units, which could offer him an avenue for rookie contributions. Doesn’t diagnose plays as quickly as you’d like; is typically not the first player to arrive at the ball, and can be fooled by misdirection. Lack of top recognition skills neutralizes his athleticism, but he does offer considerable untapped potential for the same reason. Was asked to blitz fairly regularly, but is forced to take indirect routes to the quarterback due to his lack of bulk. Capable of running with tight ends, but may be physically overmatched by some of the true inline “Y” options at the pro level. May not hold up if asked to eat blocks in a 3-4 defense; best suited to a scheme in which he’s protected by bigger defensive linemen. Has enough athleticism to make up for his lack of size and should interest teams as someone who can work in both base and sub defenses, but often finds himself out of position as a result of his below-average diagnostic abilities, which are particularly concerning given his extensive starting experience, including two years under legendary Cover-2 coach Monte Kiffin.
Games watched: Arizona (’13), Arizona St. (’13), Stanford (’13)
6’5” – 320 lbs. – 5.10e
Redshirted in 2010, then started four games at left guard in 2011. Started seven games at left tackle in 2012 before injuring his right leg and missing the remainder of the season, then started all thirteen games in 2013. Adequate height for a pro tackle, with a thick, muscular build; would also make for a prototypical guard size-wise. Plays with a nasty, physical demeanor. Competes through the whistle; gets a little bit chippy after the play at times. Projects as a quality run blocker at the next level; aggressiveness, athleticism, power, and technique are all positives. Extraordinary range in the run game; can execute hook blocks with ease. Capable of chipping a defensive lineman and reaching a second-level defender; dominates linebackers and defensive backs. Not just an obstruction downfield, but someone who can engage opponents with his hands. Generates pop on contact; keeps his feet churning once engaged, which allows him to drive defenders off the ball. Pancakes plenty of defenders. Good work ethic in the weight room. Leverage is a bit better as a pass protector than as a run blocker; can bend his knees, bends his knees when protecting, but has a tendency to get a bit upright in the run game. Looks comfortable mirroring; lateral agility is adequate, with a quick punch. A bit more powerful when it comes to drive-blocking than in terms of anchoring versus power. Has some experience executing cut blocks. Versatile; has played left tackle and left guard, could potentially project to the right side, and looks like a good fit for any type of blocking scheme. Height and length measurements will be important to confirm, as 6’5” is on the short side for a pro offensive tackle; like former Hawkeyes blindside protector Riley Reiff before him, may receive some interest as a conversation candidate, especially if his arms measure shorter than average for the position. Surgically-repaired right leg will require further medical investigation at the Combine. Not quite the refined pass-protector teams seek in a pro left tackle, but is capable of getting the job done; regardless of whether or not he remains on the left side upon reaching the pros, should be able to stick somewhere on the line thanks to his outstanding run blocking. A likely first-round pick whose best fit may come at guard, but is worth trying at tackle.
Games watched: Michigan St. (’13), Ohio St. (’13), Wisconsin (’13)
6’6” – 315 lbs. – 5.30e
Started eight games at left tackle as a sophomore, then transitioned to right guard in 2013, where he started ten games. Tall with long arms; built more like a tackle than a guard. Carries his weight well. Gets good arm extension on his blocks. Capable of generating push when he wins the leverage battle. Quick puncher who resets his hands quickly. Much better hand-use against rushers than as a run blocker. Creates pop on initial contact and keeps his feet churning, although he has a tendency to lower his head. Mobile enough to pull to either side on rushing downs; could potentially fit into a zone-blocking scheme. Effective double-team blocker. Can anchor against power in pass protection. Experience on both sides of the line and at both guard and tackle should appeal to teams seeking a swing reserve. May be too tall to play guard, as he doesn’t bend his knees particularly well and seems to have some trouble with leverage; a bit of a waist-bender. Temperamentally more of an offensive tackle. Doesn’t play with consistent balance or coordination; ends up on the ground too frequently. Mediocre lateral agility casts doubt on his ability to play on the outside at the next level. Has some problems with his awareness in pass protection, even on routine assignments. Hands find their way outside too often, generally when he’s attempting to compensate for being late to a spot. Struggles to sustain blocks. Durability could be a concern; injured his knee in high school, sustained a concussion in 2012, and broke his ankle in 2013. The type of prospect whose size, length, and experience at multiple positions at a major program should draw interest from pro teams on the third day of the draft, but who is something of a positional ‘tweener; is built like an offensive tackle, but moves like more of a guard and consequently may never develop into a starter at either spot. Some of his flaws may be masked more effectively on the inside, but plays more like a tackle, with a corresponding frame. Played his first season as an offensive guard in 2013; could dramatically improve his stock with further technical refinements, greater consistency, and a healthy year as a senior.
Games watched: Arizona (’13), Stanford (’13), Utah (’13)
6’4” – 318 lbs. – 5.15e
Started one game at left tackle in 2011, along with the following eight games at right tackle. Worked as a reserve guard in 2012, then started all fourteen games at right tackle in 2013. Knee-bender who gets adequate depth on his kickslide, with the athleticism and lateral agility to defend against opposing speed rushers; movement skills are used to compensate for his lack of ideal length. Great speed; has impressive range as a blocker, with the ability to get out in front of screens or pull in the run game. Can make blocks at the second level. Upside is still considerable given his movement skills, intelligence, and relative lack of experience. Has started one game at left tackle and spent time at guard, neither of which is completely out of the realm of possibility as an ultimate destination given further development. Overall size and bulk are only adequate for an offensive tackle; Combine measurements will be important in confirming his listed height. Would really benefit from a pro strength program. More of a finesse blocker than a mauler; lacks a nasty disposition and can be overwhelmed by power. Wall-off blocker who doesn’t generate push in the run game; doesn’t offer much to teams with power running schemes. Ends up on the ground more often than a nearly 320-pound offensive tackle should; below-average anchor given his frame. Technique in pass protection could use work; athleticism is used to mask a choppy kickslide. More reactive than anticipatory versus stunts and blitzes. Also tends to abandon his fundamentals against wide speed rushes. Inconsistent on a play-to-play basis. Doesn’t sustain blocks well. A bit of a positional ‘tweener; not quite long enough to easily protect the edge, not strong enough to create movement at guard. Has a long way to go, but could end up outperforming his draft position, as he has been restricted to the right side by his more highly-touted teammate, Cameron Erving. Will likely have to begin his career as a swing reserve, but has the potential to break into a starting lineup given time to improve his strength and technique. A low-floor, high-ceiling option for zone-blocking teams on the draft’s third day.
Games watched: Clemson (’13), Florida (’13), North Carolina St. (’13)
6’3” – 208 lbs. – 4.55e
Possesses prototypical size and bulk for an outside receiver, but also has some experience lining up in the slot. Has become more productive in each season with the Cardinals. Capable of controlling his body down the sidelines. Can do some damage on intermediate routes, specifically comebacks; also did some work over the middle on short curls and comebacks. Presents a threat after the catch in terms of being able to make the first man miss; not supremely agile, but has some shake and an above-average stiff-arm. Lacks explosiveness but has the deep speed to turn short throws into big gains. Can get off the line against press coverage, with the type of frame which should allow that skill to translate to the pro level. Exhibits good awareness as a route-runner by settling down into zones rather than running himself into coverage. Runs smooth routes but doesn’t generate much explosion out of his breaks, which could pose problems against tighter pro coverage. Tracks the ball well over his shoulder on downfield throws and is capable of making catches away from his frame. Not a particularly physical blocker, but does give a decent effort. Was something of a deep threat in college, but may not be fast enough to threaten pro defenses as consistently with his speed. Struggled to gain consistent separation against man coverage and looks much more comfortable when lining up against the soft zone shells he saw often in college. Leaves a lot of plays on the field because of his inconsistent hands; drops some routine throws and doesn’t always bring in passes on his first try, double-catching at times. Also tends to let a lot of throws get into his pads on curls. Needs to be more aggressive in attacking the ball; waits for it to come to him rather than coming back. May never become a dependable receiver, but is a fairly big target who runs clean routes and has been able to get open down the field in college; because much of his production came on deeper throws, his timed speed at the Combine will go a long way toward determining whether or not pro teams will view him as being able to do the same thing in the NFL.
Games watched: Cincinnati (’12), Connecticut (’12), Cincinnati (’13), Miami (’13)