Posted on: September 6, 2009 12:53 pm
The unfortunate shoulder injury to Sam Bradford will put some doubt into the minds of those that have previously characterized him as the likely #1 pick in the 2010 NFL Draft. Protected by one of the greatest offensive lines I've ever seen (considering NFL talent, starting experience, and scheme) Bradford rarely was knocked down in 2008 and earned the Heisman Trophy and a berth in the National Championship game. With four-fifths of his 2008 offensive line now gone, however, one could see that Bradford will have a tougher time staying upright in 2009. Should he return healthy and go on to enjoy a great 2009 campaign, his stock could improve, as he'll answer the questions about his toughness and ability to showcase that stunning downfield accuracy with defenders in his face (my two greatest concerns about his NFL prospects).
Meanwhile, Ole Miss quarterback Jevan Snead, ranked by NFLDraftScout.com as the second best quarterback of the 2011 class, has a chance to catch or perhaps even pass Bradford while the Heisman winner is out. Snead, like Bradford, will be missing valuable components along his offensive line this season, most notably offensive tackle Michael Oher.
Snead hasn't yet proven to be quite as accurate as Bradford -- and I firmly believe accuracy is the most important characteristic in grading quarterback prospects. He has proven, however, to have above average accuracy for his time in this offense and certainly possesses the rest of the skills necessary towards emerging as a potential early first round prospect.
There are elements to Snead's game that remind me of last April's first overall pick, Matthew Stafford. Like Stafford, Snead can fall in love with his own arm strength and will force passes into coverage. These can result in costly interceptions, of course. They also, however, give him opportunities to make some dazzling throws. Pro Bowl-like throws.
Watch him today against Memphis (ESPN, 3:30 EST) to see if Snead can take advantage of Bradford's injury to lessen the gap between the two prospects most scouts feel could challenge this year's senior class to be the first quarterback selected in the 2010 NFL Draft.
Posted on: September 5, 2009 8:44 pm
Edited on: September 5, 2009 9:09 pm
Reigning Heisman winner Sam Bradford was knocked out of the opener against BYU and will not return.
The hit, a legal one, came from BYU linebacker Coleby Clawson with seconds to go in the first half. It was eerily similar to the one absorbed by Tom Brady from Washington defensive tackle Albert Haynesworth left Bradford on the ground in pain. Bradford stepped into the throw, was grabbed, lifted and driven into the ground. Bradford was then helped to the sideline, where he was immediately placed on the training table, checked out, and moments later walked, obviously favoring his right (throwing) arm, into the locker room as his teammates celebrated Oklahoma kicking the go-ahead field goal. The #3 Sooners lead the #20 Cougars 10-7 at the half.
According to reports, Bradford suffered a sprain to the AC joint in his right shoulder, which, of course, is his throwing arm. X-rays were negative. Typically, a sprain of this nature requires a few weeks of recovery time. These injuries are graded on a 1-6 scale. Sprains graded as a level one or two are usually treated with ice, rest and pain medication and typically requires 2-6 weeks before the normal, pain-free range of motion returns. More severe injuries often require surgery and 6-12 months of recovery time. Again, however, the initial report is that Bradford's x-rays were negative.
Bradford has returned to the field. His right shoulder is heavily taped and being iced.
Posted on: September 5, 2009 3:58 pm
Edited on: September 5, 2009 5:32 pm
After only one series on the field against Missouri, Illinois junior wide receiver Arrelious Benn was escorted to the team locker room with an ankle injury.
Very little information has been given, except that the injury is to Benn's ankle and that he is not expected to return.
Without Benn, Illinois has made a succession of mistakes offensively and are trailing Missouri 23-3 early in the third quarter despite moving the ball pretty consistently.
Benn, who was recognized as the Big Ten's Freshman of the Year in 2007, entered the year as a preseason All-American and on the Biletnikof Watch List. He entered his junior season as one of the game's most electrifying all-around playmakers. In two seasons, he has compiled 2,782 all-purpose yards, an average of 111.3 over his career.
Posted on: September 3, 2009 6:50 pm
Consensus top senior tight end Jermaine Gresham won't be suiting up for the Sooners this weekend in their opener against BYU this weekend and head coach Bob Stoops seemed to leave open the possibility that he'll be out for much longer.
According to an AP report, Stoops said today that Gresham and team officials were considering treatment options “that could have a bearing on his return” but didn’t elaborate.
The injury, which insiders have described as a "tweaking of the knee" occurred during Tuesday's practice and kept the All-American out of team drills Wednesday, though he reportedly walked without a limp and was on hand for the drills (but out of uniform).
Until more is known, Gresham, NFLDraftScout.com's 4th overall ranked senior for 2010 draft, remains steadily within the elite prospects in the country. His stock is certainly up in the air with the injury concern, however, as Gresham relies on his eye-popping athleticism at 6-6, 258 pounds to generate separation from defenders.
OU is expecting big things from Gresham this year; perhaps considerably more so than the 66 catches for 950 yards and 14 touchdowns he posted last season. With veteran receivers Juaquin Iglesias and Manuel Johnson now trying to make their marks in the NFL, Gresham was expected to be Sam Bradford's primary target.
Posted on: September 3, 2009 2:10 pm
Edited on: September 3, 2009 6:40 pm
For those NFL Draft and college football fans looking to gain an immediate edge on their peers, two of NFLDraftScout.com's premier PDF files are ready for immediate download.
The 2010 Watch List is a 91 page book we've squeezed into a PDF. It has full profiles on the top 99 senior prospects heading into the season and much, much more.
Draft Slant is a weekly series we began last year and have brought back due to heavy customer interest. Essentially, we're acknowledging that fans would like to scout right alongside of us. In Draft Slant, we're providing a head's up on the top televised games of the upcoming week and a breakdown of ten legitimate NFL prospects we watched the week before. For this initial issue we focused on ten players who poppped off the tape from last year. Among the players featured this week are Florida ILB Brandon Spikes (Player of the Week) and Northern Iowa defensive end James Ruffin (Diamond in the Rough), as well as Clemson WR Jacoby Ford, East Carolina DE CJ Wilson, West Virginia OT Selvish Capers, and Oklahoma State CB Perrish Cox, among others.
Here is more information about each product -- as well as how to get them.
2010 Watch List:
How many players from your favorite team could end up playing on Sundays next year? Who should you know about with remote in hand? For just $14.99, you can arm yourself with all the information you need.
Your downloadable PDF will include:
* Profiles on the Top 99 prospects for '10
* Rankings for the top five prospects at each position
* Position-by-position outlook
* Preseason value board
* Hundreds of prospects by school
* And much more, including insight from NFLDraftScout.com analysts Rob Rang and Chad Reuter.
The 2010 Watchlist can be purchased by following this link:
The 2010 Draft Slant can be purchased for the entire year, which is comprised of at least 16 issues, or on a per issue basis.
NFL Draft Scout now offers a weekly newsletter that looks at the college football season through draft-colored glasses. Senior Analysts Rob Rang and Chad Reuter review prospects' play from past weeks, preview whom to watch in the coming weeks and reach out to their sources around the league to answer burning questions. Here's what you can expect in each issue of "Draft Slant":
(Entire series) http://www.myfootballnews.com/site/
(Single Issue) http://www.myfootballnews.com/site/
Posted on: September 3, 2009 1:58 pm
The FBS season officially begins today with the a full slate of games, including as many as five televised contests, depending on your location and cable provider.
South Carolina travels to North Carolina State in an intriguing regional and SEC/ACC conference battle. Each team offers plenty of talent for NFL scouts and fans to pay attention to; not the least of which are a pair of pass rushers in South Carolina's Eric Norwood and NC State Wolfpack defensive end Willie Young. Norwood is a well known commodity after earning back to back All-SEC accolades after the past two years. Young is not quite as well known across the country, but I think the 6-4, 250 pound pass rusher could turn in a big senior campaign. With the Gamecocks losing Jamon Meredith to the Green Bay Packers last April, Young could flash some of his intriguing burst off the snap to harass talented sophomore quarterback Stephen Garcia and put a damper on Steve Spurrier's passing attack. The game will begin at 7 pm (EST) on ESPN.
Following the opener is a very intriguing west coast battle between Oregon and Boise State. The Ducks are looking for payback after losing 37-32 in Eugene to the Broncos last season. Oregon features one of the more intriguing running backs in the country in senior LaGarrette Blount, a 6-1, 240 pound back who led the Pac-10 and broke the school record with 17 rushing touchdowns last season despite starting zero games behind Jeremiah Johnson. With Johnson off to the NFL, however, Blount, a JUCO transfer, will have this season to shine. Tight end Ed Dickson is another intriguing Duck to keep an eye on. The Broncos have their share of NFL prospects, as well. The most exciting being cornerback and return specialist Kyle Wilson, who considered leaving school last year after posting 5 INTs and 3 returned punts for touchdowns. This game, also on ESPN, is slated to start at 10:15 EST.
Other potentially televised games are:
North Texas at Ball State (ESPNU) at 7:30
Eastern Kentucky at Indiana (Big Ten Network) at 8:00
Utah State at Utah (The Mountain) at 9:00
Posted on: September 2, 2009 1:02 pm
Despite starting 35 consecutive games for the Volunteers, center Josh McNeil's recurring knee injuries are expected to keep him off the team this year, and according to head coach Lane Kiffin, may prematurely end his career.
Kiffin made the announcement to media Tuesday after it was discovered that McNeil would once again have to undergo surgery on his knees. The preseason second-team All-SEC pick and preseason Outland Trophy prospect had his knee scoped last week and doctors found his knee to be in such poor shape that according to Kiffin "...Now they're looking at a longer surgery to go back and do some more stuff - a surgery that would take a long time to even have because the things they'd have to get to have the surgery done."
"There's a good chance Josh won't be playing for us, and probably won't play football ever again, unfortunately," Kiffin said.
Specifics of the MRI were not released. However, the finality of Kiffin's comments certainly make it appear that McNeil has a long way to go before there is any chance of his playing in the NFL.
The fall from NFL graces for McNeil has been both quick and steep. McNeil had petitioned the NFL Advisory Committee after last year for an early prognosis of his grade (reportedly earning a 5th-7th round grade) and signed with Tennessee as the top-ranked center prospect in the country amid great fanfare.
Posted on: September 1, 2009 10:56 pm
With only a few days before Oklahoma State opens their season against Georgia in one of the biggest games of the weekend, the Cowboys' best defensive player was arrested.
Cornerback and return-extraordinaire Perrish Cox was stopped last week for speeding and then found to be driving with a suspended licence, which caused his arrest and carries a $240.00 fine.
Head coach Mike Gundy chose to ignore requests for comment other than to say, "We will handle all things internally." Cox is expected to remain as a starter for the Cowboys against Georgia and sensational sophomore A.J. Green Saturday.
Cox, 6-0 and 195 pounds, has the size, speed and overall athleticism to emerge as the nation's top senior cornerback prospect. While much of the Big XII has struggled with pass defense, Cox has steadily developed into a shut-down corner, posting 21 pass breakups over the past three seasons, including 6 interceptions. Of course, he's known more for his return skills to this point than his pass defense. With over 2,600 return yards and 5 combined touchdowns (4 on kickoffs, 1 on a punt), he, along with Alabama's Javier Arenas, ranks as the country's most formidable special teams weapon.
He'll need to make better decisions off the field, however, if he is to take advantage of his obvious athleticism.