Blog Entry

Under the Radar Week One Match-ups

Posted on: September 2, 2011 10:57 pm
Edited on: September 3, 2011 10:50 am

You can check out the top players and match-ups to watch this weekend here on the front page of

But if you want five more intriguing scouting match-ups to watch this weekend? Check these out:

1. Appalachian State WR Brian Quick vs. Virginia Tech CB Jayron Hosley

Hosley led the Football Bowl Subdivision last year with nine interceptions, but the 5-10, 172-pound zone corner faces a 6-foot-5, 220-pound strider in Quick (who averaged 18 yards a reception and scored nine times in 2010) this weekend. Scouts will be quite interested to see if Hosley can handle Quick's size on slants or on jump balls in the red zone; it could portend his value as an outside corner or limit him to the slot at the next level.

2. Memphis DT Dontari Poe vs. Mississippi State C Quinton Saulsberry

Memphis' 6-foot-5, 350-pound junior tackle is a star on the rise, but he'll need to prove he can hold his ground and shed the strong blocks of Saulsberry, who moves inside to center (his likely NFL position) for his senior year to take advantage of his stout build and low center of gravity. If Poe uses his quick feet to get around Saulsberry or push him (and the double teams likely to come) into the backfield, and decides to leave school early after a successful season, he could be among the top five draft-eligible tackles in the 2012 class.

3. Montana CB Trumaine Johnson vs. Tennessee WRs

Johnson is this year's six-foot-plus corner from outside major college football who will challenge for a top 100 draft slot (Derek Cox-2009, Akwasi Owusu-Ansah-2010, Cortez Allen-2011). Not only does he have the size scouts like at the position, but also the ball skills (13 career interceptions, 23 pass break-ups. His physicality as a tackler, footwork, and straight-line speed will be challenged this week, however, going up against Tennessee quarterback Tyler Bray and his tall and fast fellow sophomores, receivers Justin Hunter and Da'Rick Rogers.

4. Tennessee-Chattanooga QB B.J. Coleman vs. Nebraska Defense

A former Volunteer quarterback is also trying to earn scouts' respect this fall. Coleman, who transferred from Tennessee before his redshirt sophomore year due to his perceived lack of opportunity to become the starter, and his Moccasins will likely be overmatched by the Cornhuskers' defense. But even if the 6-foot-5, 220-pound pocket passer's statistics aren't great, he can scouts he possesses the poise to handle Nebraska's pressure and arm strength to make throws against any small opening the Blackshirts give him.

5. Louisiana-Lafayette TE Ladarius Green vs. Oklahoma State Defense 

One of the top tight ends in the country plays in the Sun Belt Conference, typically in the shadows because of a lack of national television coverage. But the 6-foot-6, Green is starting to get his due. He had big games against Georgia (4 catches, 87 yards, touchdown) and Arizona State (7-97-1) last season and finished 2010 with 100-yard performances in four of the last five games. He also made six receptions for 64 yards vs. LSU in 2009. Despite his height and long strides downfield, Green's foot quickness in routes and explosion off the snap are NFL-worthy. OSU must keep an eye (or two or three) on this future top 150 pick if they want to keep the Ragin' Cajuns in their place.

--Contributed by Chad Reuter, Senior Analyst for Follow him on Twitter at @ChadReuter.

Category: NFL Draft
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