Category: Uncategorized

CB Javaris Davis, Auburn

5’8” – 183 lbs. – 4.39

Started five of thirteen games as a freshman and has been playing on the boundary and in the slot ever since, also returning some punts. Intercepted two passes in each of his four seasons at Auburn, with 37 tackles and seven breakups as a freshman, 29 tackles and six breakups as a sophomore, 41 tackles and eight breakups as a junior, and 43 tackles and six breakups as a senior. On the fringes of what’s acceptable size-wise at the cornerback position; will probably be viewed exclusively as a slot corner, which is what he was playing most of the time during the games reviewed.

Made a lot of drops into short zones from the slot but also did some work in man coverage. A very good athlete for the position, and who combines a conservative temperament in coverage with a physical temperament when dealing with opposing ballcarriers. Has quick feet in his backpedal or when making spot drops, and does a good job of keeping the play in front of him, the price he pays being giving up completions on underneath throws. Has been starting for four seasons, but anticipatory skills still look like a work in progress. However, does a nice job of closing quickly and delivering hits on receivers running slants, drags, etc. in order to limit yards after the catch. Has plenty of speed to provide tight coverage with opposing receivers running down the seams, or when closing on posts or flag routes from off-coverage. Makes smooth transitions when turning and running. On-ball production was adequate at the college level, but can be shielded from the ball and would like to see him be more aggressive.

As mentioned above, is willing to get physical in the run game or after the catch, but isn’t particular effective in those situations. Lack of ideal length works against him when it comes to taking on blockers and can struggle to disengage in time, despite being active with his hands and giving good effort to work around them and get to the ball. Has a strong closing burst and can generate some pop on contact, although he can be more of a hitter than a tackler and will bounce off of some attempts; actual radius is also a bit lacking, causing him to fall short on too many attempts.

A slot cornerback candidate with special-teams value who looks set to come off the board in the mid-rounds, he combines plus speed and athleticism with a conservative temperament, limiting big plays, but who can struggle to hold up in the run game and who can be a little bit slow to diagnose at times. Will probably begin his career on coverage units and potentially as a return specialist.

CB Amik Robertson, Louisiana Tech*

5’8” – 187 lbs.

Has been starting since his true freshman season, a year in which he posted 63 tackles, broke up six passes, and intercepted five balls. Followed that up with 61 tackles, twelve breakups, and four interceptions as a sophomore, then recorded 60 tackles, sixteen breakups, and five interceptions as a junior before declaring for the draft. Returned three career interceptions for touchdowns and also posted 23 career tackles for loss. Smaller than you’d like in a pro cornerback prospect, and it’s possible that he doesn’t meet some teams’ minimum requirements, even for a nickel defender.

Didn’t see him playing in the slot during the games reviewed, however. Was asked to handle your traditional array of coverage assignments on the boundary; played off-man, press-man, shuffle, and zone. Has adequate footwork to match releases at the line of scrimmage, and looks like he’s fast and fluid enough to turn and run with receivers down the sideline. Willing to get physical at the line of scrimmage. Wasn’t asked to backpedal too much but has adequate balance and footwork when doing so. When targeted downfield, does a good job of getting his head around to locate the football. On-ball production over the past three years is excellent. Ball-hawk who doesn’t have a ton of burst when planting and driving on a spot from off coverage, although he can anticipate and undercut some routes because of his pattern-recognition skills. However, can struggle to climb the ladder and defend against jump-balls.

Lacking in run support; looks soft in that phase of the game. Tends to defer to other teammates in the area and rarely demonstrates a strong motor in backside pursuit. Not a consistent form tackler; will deliver the occasional hit, but misses tackles by getting too cute and trying to rip away the football instead of hitting the ballcarrier. When defending against screens, struggles to hold the point and disengage against wide receivers; anchor and contact balance are basically what you’d expect given his size.

An undersized defensive back with adequate athleticism and the ability to anticipate and undercut patterns to break up or intercept passes, but who will probably need to slide inside at the next level and who is one of the weakest prospects in the draft when it comes to making tackles and taking on blockers. Consequently, looks like a polarizing prospect who may not come off the board until the third day.

WR John Hightower, Boise St.

6’1” – 189 lbs. – 4.43

Originally attended Hinds Community College, where he played two seasons before coming to Boise St. Started four of ten games played in his first year with the Broncos, finishing with a line of 31-504-6 (16.3), then became a full-time starter last year and went 51-943-8 (18.5) while returning kicks. Overall size is adequate for the outside, although he has a thin build, even after gaining bulk for the Combine; was listed at just 172 on his team’s official website. Tended to line up as a flanker off the line of scrimmage, taking snaps on both sides of the formation and often coming in motion pre-snap; however, would also take some snaps on the line as more of a split end.

Doesn’t look particularly explosive when running shorter patterns; more of a smooth accelerator who ran a fairly simple route tree consisting of your typical out routes, slants, screens, curls, and drags, with deeper shots thrown in. Some of his usage was built around getting him the ball with room to work with in the open field, and would also carry it on jet sweeps from motion. Can occasionally struggle to create separation with his release when working against physical coverage at the line. Does have some nuance to his routes, working in head fakes and making an effort to sink his hips into the stem, but looks more flexible than he is explosive and didn’t generate a ton of separation out of his breaks. Changes speeds and works in head fakes and jab steps when running go routes down the sidelines to freeze defenders and does a pretty good job of tracking over his shoulder; long speed is good enough to threaten downfield.

Doesn’t appear to have the most reliable set of hands, double-catching some passes and dropping two during the games reviewed; seems to struggle to adjust to balls away from his frame or come down with catches in traffic. With the ball in his hands, does a good job of weaving through traffic and has the long speed to break big gains if he’s able to find a lane. Also gives solid effort as a blocker, working hard to engage and sustain through the whistle despite below-average functional strength.

A thin receiver who essentially served as a deep threat and big-play specialist in college, but who is going to need to continue to polish his releases and route running and add functional strength in order to succeed at the next level. Will likely begin his career as a return specialist and fourth receiver but could eventually work his way further up the depth chart.

QB Anthony Gordon, Washington St.

6’2” – 205 lbs.

Attended City College of San Francisco in 2015, then transferred to Washington St., redshirting in 2016. Spent the first two seasons behind Luke Falk and Gardner Minshew, then took over the starting role this past season. Put together a monster line of 5,579 yards and 48 touchdowns on 71.6% passing, being intercepted sixteen times while operating Mike Leach’s famous Air Raid offense, which has produced some of the most prolific passing attacks in college football history. The Air Raid is a pass-heavy, shotgun-based offense which typically features four receivers, with the quarterback getting the ball out quickly behind an offensive line with wide splits. The offense features a lot of high-low concepts, with reads on one side of the field. Overall size is on the small side for a pro quarterback, with height which is just adequate and a thin build.

Gets the ball out quickly. Otherwise, mostly a mess from a mechanical standpoint. Stands flat-footed in the pocket, with a narrow base; doesn’t consistently or even usually step into throws or transfer weight to generate velocity from his lower body, even when working from a clean pocket. When throwing on the move, tends not to reset his feet. Velocity largely comes from his arm and by generating torque with his upper body. Struggles to replicate his arm angle and lacks follow-through on his throws. Lack of sound fundamentals can cause him to spray the ball all over the field; high completion percentage is more attributable to his offense’s high amount of screens and rhythm-based throws within ten yards. Clearly does have some arm talent though, as he throws a tight spiral with adequate velocity despite the aforementioned shortcomings; can take advantage of holes in zones at the intermediate level, and shows good touch to drop the ball in the bucket downfield. Also needs some work on his decision-making, as he can be a bit of a gunslinger who attempts throws into tight coverage, misses linebackers, or hangs receivers out to dry.

A pretty good athlete who’s able to escape from pressure and extend the play or take advantage of open lanes in order to pick up first downs. However, would like to see him utilize the pocket better; tends to flee prematurely and given his small frame, would be well-served by minimizing his rushing attempts to better protect his body.

The latest in a long line of ultra-productive college quarterbacks from Mike Leach’s offense, he may benefit from Gardner Minshew’s success last season but despite his quick release, touch, and at least adequate arm talent, has a long way to go as a quarterback and looks like more of a mid-to-late-round flier and long-term project.

DE Alex Highsmith, Charlotte

6’3” – 248 lbs. – 4.70

Walk-on who rotated into the defense as a freshman and finished with 17-2.0-1.0. Saw his role expand as a sophomore and ended up with 33-5.0-2.0, then stepped into the starting lineup the following year and went 60-18.5-3.0. Finished his collegiate career with a monster senior line of 75-21.5-15.0. Has adequate size for a pro edge rusher in terms of his height and length, but may be asked to gain some additional bulk, as he’s right on the fringes of what’s generally considered acceptable there. Usually lined up as the team’s right end, typically with his hand in the ground but occasionally out of a two-point stance.

The first things that stand out are his quickness and overall level of activity, traits which helped him to produce eye-popping statistics as a pass rusher this past year. Anticipates the snap count well and exhibits an excellent first step. Gets off the line pretty fast and can threaten the edge with his speed. Pretty creative player who varies his rush approach, showing opposing blockers different things. Tends to rely on a speed rush, working in his rip move to help get around the edge, but can also dip his shoulder and work back with an inside move. Has good balance and adequate bend around the edge, although he can often be worked too deep. Doesn’t have much of a power element to his game, rarely going to his bull rush or trying to convert speed to power; would probably need to add more bulk/strength in order to make that a viable element of his game. Can struggle to counter when his first move doesn’t work.

Shows a very good motor and the speed to pursue plays on rushing downs. Plays with patience when working as the read man or when pursuing from the backside. May not be able to walk back many linemen with his power, but does a good job of getting extension, staying light on his feet, and locating the football. Can sell out to get inside penetration and blow up plays in the backfield, but at times can be sealed inside when he tries to crash down. Looks more comfortable pursuing from the back end than he does when asked to hold the point of attack. Length leaves a little bit to be desired and can cause him to get stuck on blocks or miss tackles.

A small-school prospect with big production, an excellent motor, and a varied rush approach that takes advantage of his quickness and explosiveness, he will probably need to add some additional bulk and strength but has the potential to help a team’s pass rush and proved that he could hold his own against the offensive tackles at major programs when given the opportunity. Looks like he might be a mid-round pick; anything later than that would come as a surprise.

DT Raequan Williams, Michigan St.

6’4” – 308 lbs. – 5.04

Redshirted, then started three of eleven games the following season, going 28-5.0-2.0. Finished his career with 42 straight starts at nose tackle, resulting in lines of 31-6.0-2.5 as a sophomore, 50-10.5-2.0 as a junior, and 48-7.5-5.0 as a senior. Well-built for a pro defensive lineman, with an excellent combination of height and bulk; overall length is at least adequate. Capable of playing either the zero-technique or the one-technique nose tackle positions.

Solid run defender with a gritty, lunchpail approach. Has impressive quickness off the snap for a player of his size, flashing the ability to use swim moves to create disruption. However, tends to go with a more traditional two-gap approach. Fires out low, gets good extension with his arms, and keeps his legs churning after contact to reset the line of scrimmage; able to walk back opposing centers and create congestion, something which caused opposing offenses to double-team him at times. Able to dig in and hold the point of attack, with decent balance. Has a lot of power in his hands to shed blocks, as well as a solid tackling radius to bring down ballcarriers. Impressive ability to anticipate the play direction. Does a good job of scraping down the line and flowing toward the play direction, although his overall athleticism in space is just average.

Tended to stay on the field on passing downs and enjoyed some success in that capacity last year. Goes with a pretty straightforward power approach most of the time, using his bull rush to try and prevent the quarterback from being able to step up in the pocket. However, does flash the ability to penetrate, and possesses pretty good closing burst for a player of his size, although he may struggle to seal the deal against quarterbacks who flee the pocket.

One of the sleeper candidates in this year’s draft class. Typically projected as more of a mid-to-late-round pick, and while it’s true that he’s not one of the most fearsome interior rushers available, he comes with pro-ready size and power straight away, doing a good job of flowing toward the ball as a two-gap defender. Consequently, looks like a good bet to work his way into a defensive line rotation for a team that prefers a tough, disciplined approach over one based on penetration. Could conceivably play the nose in either front, or the five-technique end spot on an odd line.

LB Willie Gay Jr., Mississippi St.*

6’2” – 243 lbs. – 4.46

Recorded 23-2.0-1.0 as a backup linebacker and special-teams player in his freshman season, then followed that up with his best year, a sophomore campaign in which he posted a line of 48-5.5-5.0. Ended up getting suspended this past season and was limited to five games (28-3.5-0.0), then decided to declare for the draft. Pretty well-built linebacker who played both inside and outside for the Bulldogs, should be big enough for either role at the pro level.

Calling card is his elite athleticism, which carried over from his workouts into his game tape. Looks smooth and explosive when playing downhill; also reads keys quickly and plays with a pretty aggressive, frentic on-field temperament. Does a pretty good job of keeping his shoulders square. Still refining his instincts and will get caught out of position more than than you’d like, committing to a course of action early and taking false steps against misdirection. That leads to some uncoordinated movements as he tries to recover his position. Flashes the ability to slip blockers, but doesn’t work through trash as quick as some of the other linebackers in the class, and needs to take some circuitous routes to the ball. Takes very inefficient angles in pursuit. Despite what looks like an adequate motor and high-end athleticism, didn’t actually record many tackles, but generates some pop on contact.

Capable of working both in coverage and as a blitzer on passing downs. At his best when he’s able to keep things in front of him and close on a spot; very well-suited to carrying running backs into the flats or spying/blitzing the passer, with the acceleration and speed to finish his rushes with sacks. Can rush off the edge or from the inside, although he doesn’t have much hand use to slip by blockers if he’s successfully engaged. Still developing his feel for and technique in coverage but has the raw athleticism to work against tight ends, and was frequently dropping into short zones as well, albeit with somewhat stilted footwork when dropping or backpedaling. Recorded three interceptions over the past two seasons.

A prospect who has all of the athleticism teams look for in a pro linebacker, but who struggles to play against the run at this point because of his raw instincts and struggles when working through congestion; already makes big plays, but his snap-to-snap consistency is lacking. If his character checks out, looks like he could come off the board around the mid-rounds as a boom-or-bust type project with a high ceiling as an every-down linebacker. Would be best in a scheme which protected him with big defensive linemen and simplified his assignments.

LB Markus Bailey, Purdue

6’1” – 235 lbs.

Appeared in three games before sustaining a season-ending knee injury in 2015, then took over a full-time starting job the following year, finishing with a line of 97-6.0-0.0 and four interceptions. Followed that up with 89-11.0-7.0 as a sophomore and 115-9.0-6.5 as a junior, but sustained another season-ending knee injury in practice two games into his senior campaign, a year in which he was a co-captain. Has adequate size for a pro linebacker, although it’s on the lower end of what teams look for.

Racked up a ton of tackles over his three seasons as a starter and always seems to be around the football when defending the run. Reads keys quickly and doesn’t take many wasted steps when flowing toward the ball. Active with his hands and does a good job of using technique to slip blockers and work through traffic. Doesn’t offer the widest tackling radius but is a physical linebacker who breaks down well and uses appropriate wrap tackling technique to bring down ballcarriers. Shows a good motor to chase toward the sidelines and was capable of making some tackles near the boundaries. However, athleticism is not quite what you’d hope for on the weakside; was able to make a lot of plays because of his overall instincts/awareness and efficient angles in pursuit, but may have to slide inside at the next level to mask his lack of ideal speed and explosiveness.

Would often shade over receivers on passing downs, usually working in zone coverage. Looks light on his feet when making drops into coverage, although his actual form looks a little bit awkward at times. Appropriately conservative when the play is in front of him but struggles to turn and run with opponents when pattern-matching. Does a pretty good job of sniffing out screens and fighting through traffic to get himself into position to make a tackle. May struggle to work in man coverage against opposing backs, receivers, and tight ends at the pro level. Enjoyed some production rushing the passer as a junior but isn’t someone who will probably be asked to play on the edge much at the pro level.

A great college played who has the type of production, leadership qualities, and smarts to get drafted, but whose role may be more limited at the pro level to mask his average athleticism. If his medical evaluations went well at the Combine, looks like a mid-round pick who could endear himself to a pro coaching staff.

LB Cam Brown, Penn St.

6’5” – 233 lbs. – 4.72

Started two of twelve games as a true freshman and finished with 33-1.5-0.5, then appeared in twelve games the following year and went 30-1.0-0.0. Stepped into the starting lineup as a junior and finished with a 63-6.5-2.0 line, then posted 72-5.5-2.0 as a senior, a year in which he was named a team captain. Very tall and long-limbed for a pro linebacker, with arms which measured 34” at the Combine; on the light side for a player that big, but should meet any team’s minimum requirements overall, particularly considering he typically lines up as a weakside linebacker.

When defending the run, gets good extension with his arms to prevent opposing blockers from locking onto his frame; does a good job of shedding as he pursues. Does a nice job of getting low to avoid having his height work against him. Has pretty sound instincts and adequate athleticism to get to the spot; not the most explosive mover, but doesn’t take many false steps. Generally willing to take on blockers in the hole but can occasionally try to slip under blockers, leading to inefficiencies in angles. Can occasionally lapse into being more of a hitter than a tackler, although he can help set the tone defensively with his physicality. Has long arms but isn’t as reliable a tackler as you’d like even when wrapping up opponents. When opponents do manage to engage him, anchor strength appears to be lacking a little bit as well.

Stayed on the field on passing downs and would often shade over opposing receivers in the slot; can deliver a solid chip to disrupt routes but probably isn’t athletic enough to actually match up against them in man coverage. Generally made limited drops into zone coverage; has some trouble getting low into his backpedal, but plays with a pretty conservative temperament, keeping himself in position to make tackles quickly after the catch. Wasn’t able to get a good look at him in man coverage on opposing tight ends, probably because he tended to line up on the weak side, but that would be an assignment which appears well-suited to his physical and athletic profile. Also not used too frequently as a blitzer and may not really have the explosiveness to his movements to generate consistent pressure in that role.

A tall, long-limbed linebacker who has pretty sound instincts and can help set the tone defensively with big hits, but who needs to clean up his technique, whose athleticism is closer to adequate, and who isn’t the most reliable tackler, he will likely come off the board on the third day, jockeying for a spot in the mid-rounds but potentially being available later.

DE Nick Coe, Auburn*

6’5” – 280 lbs. – 4.89

Was a state wrestling champion in high school. Redshirted, then contributed 29-4.5-2.0 the following year, starting one of fourteen games. Started at the Buck linebacker position the following year and finished with 26-13.5-7.0, missing two games, then lost his starting job last season and finished with 15-3.0-0.0 as a junior before declaring for the draft. Tended to line up on the right end as a sophomore, typically playing out of a two-point stance, but was playing different techniques out of a three-point stance during the junior games reviewed. Very well-built for a pro edge defender, with an excellent combination of size, bulk, and length; should meet any team’s size requirements.

Gritty defender who plays with toughness and physicality to set the edge; doesn’t shy away from contact and has a pretty strong anchor to hold the point of attack. However, would like to see more patience and technique in that capacity. Has a tendency to throw his body into opponents instead of using his length to lock them out and read the play. Tends to get too far inside, lose track of the ball, and let opposing ballcarriers get out from between the tackles; overall awareness and gap discipline are lacking. Gives solid effort in pursuit from the backside, although his speed is nothing special.

More impressive as a pass-rusher, and was productive in that capacity as a redshirt sophomore. Tends to go with a power-based approach, showing some ability to walk back opposing offensive linemen with his bull rush. Overall level of activity in his hands is good. Can convert speed to power and use heavy hands to shed opposing blockers and pursue the quarterback. Has some ability to generate pressure with inside moves. Also appears to have some untapped potential on passing downs, as he tends to play high, negating his natural power. Flashes a nice rip on the edge, although his bend is average at best. However, explosiveness and closing burst are just average. Seems to lack counters to free himself up when his initial move doesn’t work.

Put himself on the map with a strong 2018 campaign, but almost everything went wrong this past season and looks like a mid-round pick at best at this point, particularly after testing extremely poorly at the Combine, both in terms of his timed speed and his leaping. However, the size, strength, and physicality are there, and could end up succeeding if he’s able to improve his leverage, use his length to lock out blockers, and do a better job of locating the football.