Tuesday, April 19, 2011

2011 NFL Draft Extra: Quarterbacks, Running Backs and Wide Receivers

Right then, here we are. With an extra dose of Quarterbacks, Running Backs and Wide Receivers. Starting with:

- Kevin Riley. I covered him at the end of the original Running Backs post, but I'll go back over it here. Not the greatest QB in the world, but talented. If that makes sense. Nice footwork, a pretty good arm, good touch and accuracy. This might just be me. I have these moments sometimes when I get caught up watching a player and all the pieces of the jigsaw seem to be fitting in place. I may be wrong. And we may never know. Riley is unlikely to get drafted, but maybe he will work his way up through someones practice squad. I'm rooting for him, and I'm probably going to sneak him on to my 2011 rookie watch list.

- Scott Tolzien. Ball placement is sometimes questionable, but overall not a bad QB. Stands in the pocket well and decision making is pretty good.

- Greg McElroy. Moves well in the pocket, accurate, pretty good arm, good decision making.

- Nathan Enderle. To be fair to Enderle, his O-line in college was terrible and his wide receivers often let him down badly. Plenty of times he hit them in the hands and they dropped it anyway. That said, very good footwork, made some great throws - NFL caliber throws into tight windows. Ran a pro style offense and demonstrated the ability to make solid checks at the line. Would have been much more succesful with better receivers.

- Pat Devlin. Some errant throws at times. Ball placement was not great. Was 30 minutes late for his own college pro day. How do you do that?

- Jerrod Johnson. Mixed view. On the one hand he has great numbers and seems on the face of it to be a very good QB. On the other hand, you notice that most of his big completions involve wide open receivers who have clearly outclassed their coverage men. I don't see any of the tough, tight window throws that will be the bread and butter at the next level.

Running Backs
- Mark Ingram. Seems odd, starting with a player I've already covered. But having watched Dion Lewis I was prompted to go back and check Ingram out again. Previously I had called him “Without question the best back in draft. Just… no arguments,”. But now I'm not so sure. Compared to guys like Lewis and Shane Vereen, his speed and agility look pedestrian. His vision looks average. Starting to doubt whether he's even a first rounder.

This seems like an odd thing to say now, but I think part of the problem is that when I first sat down to watch Ingram, I was expecting everything to be great and that may have clouded my thought process a little. The expectation got ahead of the reality. On that note.

- Jacquizz Rodgers. Kendall Hunter. Jordan Todman. Having gone back and watched these three as well, I'm beginning to have doubts about them to, mainly for the same reason as each other. On further review they all seem to lack that patience and vision that becomes so important to backs at the next level.

- Daniel Thomas. He's not the fastest back in the draft, nor the most agile, but he has a knack of slithering through space and getting the yards. Could be a handy late round pick for someone

- Damien Berry. Pretty darn quick and had some nice open field moves, especially when getting downfield as a receiver so might be one to consider.

- Brandon Saine. Quick, low pads, good vision and good burst in the open field.

- Ryan Williams. Vision is sometimes questionable, but power and playing with low pads is undeniable. Has a nice turn of speed for his size once he hits the open field.

- Mikel Leshoure. Quick feet, tough, agile, excellent vision, good burst, drives feet hard on contact and fights for every last yard. An excellent all round back.

- Delone Carter. Quite a stout back. Not the quickest, but strong. Utility in pass protection will be a bonus. Cuts well inside to find a path through traffic.

- Dion Lewis. Quick and agile. Consistency from down to down is superb. Finds the gap and snakes his way through, with some nice moves to boot. Breaks tackles well and for a little guy can run hard between the tackles. A truly excellent back.

- Derrick Locke. Some nice patience at times. Has a good turn of speed. A good receiver out of the backfield.

- Johnny White. Not bad. Speed is a bit of a question mark though.

- Roy Helu. Pretty strong. Pass protection is good. Speed and vision a little dubious though.

- Bilal Powell. Good agility. Vision ok. Has a great turn of speed in the open field. Likes to drop his shoulder and deliver a hit on the defender which is always a good thing.

- Noel Devine. Great speed and agility, but worried by his tendency to just run down the line. Not sure how well he'll make the transition to the next level.

- Mario Fannin. Big, strong, but that's about it. As far as vision goes he's "blind".

- Da'Rel Scott. Slow in pads. That is all.

- Nic Grigsby. Cutting ability is excellent. Open field speed is a problem though, gets caught far too easily.

- Allen Bradford. Strong back. Has a surprising turn of speed and agility for his size. Looking good as a late round/FA prospect.

- Vai Taua. Good speed and cutting in the open field. Benefited perhaps from playing in an option heavy system, but overall skill set should transfer well to the pro's.

- Graig Cooper. Not bad. Pretty quick. Has utility on special teams as well. Vision is pretty good.

- Armando Allen. Average back.

- Barron Batch. Lame. Slow.

- Donald Buckram. Not bad, pretty quick, lateral speed is good.

- C.J. Gable. Average back.

- Gino Gordon. Patience, speed and agility were all good.

Wide Receivers
- Edmund Gates. Pretty good footwork, fast, agile. Makes some good adjustments under the ball, but not the greatest attacker of it. Route running is a little sloppy.

- Austin Pettis. Great ball handling and concentration. Not very "field quick". Run after the catch is highly questionable.

- Dwayne Harris. Not bad hands. Not particularly quick or agile. Limited route running. Average at best.

- Greg Salas. Very fluid movements. Very good hands. Tough as nails, reminds me of Anquan Boldin/Hines Ward.

Jeremy Kerley. Not bad. Quick, hands are ok. Route running I saw was very limited. Supposed to be an elite returner but decision making in the return game was highly questionable. Doesn't look like an NFL receiver.

- Ronald Jackson. Excellent route running and route adjustments. Pretty tough. Good hands.

- Denarius Moore. Some nice catches. Route running technique is very good. Again, not the fastest in the world but a pretty solid receiver.

- Tori Gurley. Reasonable hands. Big body. Makes some good adjustments to the ball. It's hard to explain, but I think he'll do well.

- DeAndre Brown. Some nice catches. A little clumsy looking at times. Terrible run blocker. Not the greatest route runner either. Seems a little afraid of contact.

- Dane Sanzenbacher. Nice routes. Great hands. Will be a late round/undrafted bargain.

- Mark Dell. Not a bad route runner. Has some nice moves.

- Lester Jean. There are technicians like Jerry Rice, then there are just physically gifted individuals like Jean. Outstanding over the shoulder catcher. Can see him as a Randy Moss style, "only runs three routes but runs them really well" type of guy.

- Jock Sanders. Size will probably preclude him from being anything more than a slot receiver, but has good balance and speed.

- B.J. Frazier. Tough kid. Greasy fast. Great route technique. Great under the ball. Could come from nowhere to have a great career.

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