Tag:Alex Carrington
Posted on: April 23, 2010 10:08 pm

Roberts, Veldheer, Carrington will surprise

As we get into the middle rounds is where NFL scouts and draft analysts earn their money.

While few fans will know much about Andre Roberts, wideout from The Citadel, Hillsdale offensive tackle Jared Veldheer and even Sun Belt standout Alex Carrington from Arkansas State, I believe these three will prove to be three of the better picks of the third round.

Roberts is my favorite of the three. Even with the trade of Anquan Boldin, the Cardinals are well stocked at wide receiver already with Larry Fitzgerald, Steve Breaston and Early Doucet. Roberts is a classic slot receiver and returner who could step in immediately should one of them go down to injury. Typically small school receivers are raw route-runners, but I was very impressed with Roberts at the Senior Bowl in this area. He has hands of glue.

Perhaps the most NFL-ready of the bunch, however, is Arkansas State's Alex Carrington, who at 6-5, 280 pounds has the length and strength the Bills need at defensive end for their conversion to the 3-4 defense. Carrington, like Roberts, helped dispel any thoughts that he couldn't make the jump to better competition with a strong showing at the Senior Bowl.

Veldheer, a 46 game starter and All-American, fills an area of real concern for the Raiders. He has the length the Raiders like outside and really made a name for himself at the Texas vs. Nation game. I've spoken to scouts who rate him similarly to former Sebastian Vollmer, a surprise second round pick last year for the Patriots who ended up starting eight games as a rookie, including five games at left tackle.

Posted on: January 30, 2010 8:36 pm

Senior Bowl a microcosm of draft -- DL dominates

All year long we've talked about the dominance of this year's defensive line crop and in the 2010 Senior Bowl that dominance came through. While offensive lines are often at a significant disadvantage in all-star games due to the lack of cohesion they've been able to establish, the fact that so different defensive linemen were able to make big plays in this game speaks to the relative talent on that side of the ball.

Consider that:
  • Michigan DE Brandon Graham won MVP honors with 5 tackles, 2 sacks, a TFL and a forced fumble.
  • Murray State DE Austen Lane scored a touchdown on a fumble recovery
  • Purdue DT Mike Neal, Troy DE Cameron Sheffield, Georgia DT Geno Atkins, Tennessee DT Dan Williams, Alabama DT Terrence Cody, and California DE Tyson Alualu all either posted a sack, a tackle for loss or both.
  • The DL likely to be drafted highest from the game, Penn State's Jared Odrick, and the DL that had likely improved his stock the most this week, Arkansas State DE Alex Carrington, did not record a sack or TFL, though each played well. 
We all know the talking heads are going to focus on the "skill positions" during draft coverage over the next few months.

The savvy draft fans out there know that the real talent in this draft, however, lies along the defensive line.
Posted on: January 27, 2010 1:48 pm

Graham, Odrick star; Carrington, Lane moving up

In the offensive line writeup I posted earlier, I tried to focus on the smaller school prospects. Iupati and DuCasse have not only proven to be the most intriguing athletically, they're players most aren't familiar with.

No discussion of the North defensive line could begin without first mentioning the dominant play today from Penn State's Jared Odrick and Michigan's Brandon Graham. Odrick simply abused whoever was placed in front of him today, blowing past Zane Beadles and Shawn Lauvao. Graham's speed and strong hands had former Notre Dame tackle Sam Young (6-8, 305) spinning in pass drills and struggling to handle the 6-1, 263 pound Graham.

Big Ten fans wouldn't have been surprised -- and neither were scouts -- who view the conference's best defensive linemen as sure top 50 selections.

Two defensive ends moving up the charts this week are less known throughout the country -- Arkansas State's Alex Carrington and Murray State's Austen Lane.

Each pass the eyeball test at 6-5, 284 pounds and 6-6, 267 pounds, respectively.

Carrington is the stronger, stouter player against the run. He has enough burst upfield to challenge the offensive tackle and has strong hands to stack and separate. He lacks the burst to close to ever be more than a complimentart pass rusher, but is one of the more impressive all-around defensive ends of this class. Scouts love that he can play end in the 3-4 as well as the 4-3. He even lined up at defensive tackle and nose guard, at times, today.

Lane doesn't yet have Carrington's strength, but is a more fluid pass rusher. He has a surprising burst off the snap for a man his size and shows an intriguing array of pass rush technique for a small school player. He was particularly impressive against fellow small-schooler Vladimir DuCasse. On one of his more impressive plays, Lane burst off the snap to pressure DuCasse's outside shoulder, then re-directed back inside, ripping through DuCasse's hands to gain get the tackle's hands off of him. DuCasse, to his credit, remained balance and squarely in front of Lane, but a quick spin back outside showed an extra gear that the UMass lineman wasn't expecting.

Lane has to improve his strength and recognition (he repeatedly bit on the play-action and crashed downfield, losing contain), but a year in an NFL weight-room could see this kid develop into a legitimate NFL starter.

Don't be surprised if Carrington and Lane join Odrick and Graham as top 50 selections...
Posted on: October 13, 2009 9:09 pm

Tuesday night football boasts legit NFL DE

A rare Tuesday night game on ESPN2 tonight features one of the more intriguing defensive end prospects throughout the country, with Arkansas State's 6-5, 284 pound Alex Carrington , who earned Sun Belt Defensive Player of the Year honors last season, getting an opportunity to showcase himself to NFL scouts.

While Carrington hasn't posted much this season in terms of numbers (11 tackles, 3.5 tackles for loss, 1 sack), last year he was an absolute terror -- posting 19 tackles for loss and finishing only one shy of the conference record with 11.5 sacks.

Carrington isn't just a product of poor competition. He gave Iowa tackles Bryan Bulaga and Kyle Calloway plenty of trouble two weeks ago, serving as a primary reason why the Hawkeyes narrowly escaped with a narrow 24-21 victory. His one sack of the season came against Nebraska.

With scouts treasuring the few early days of the week in which they get to spend with family, there may not be a lot of NFL representatives at tonight's game against UL-Monroe. Based on the number of calls I've received today about Carrington, however, I can assure you many of them are recording this game on their own while enjoying some family time...

A strong game tonight and Carrington will be a consideration for next week's Draft Slant.
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