Posted on: November 24, 2010 1:13 pm
Each week in this space I try to provide readers with a breakdown of a small school prospect who I believe has a shot at the NFL. In a perfect world the game breakdown comes from a contest played this past weekend.
Some of these games come from direct television feeds. Some others come from coaches tape overnighted to me so I can review and write up the players by Tuesday. This week's prospect -- Humboldt State center Taylor Boggs -- came to my attention via an email sent by Duane "Duke" Manyweather, a strength and conditioning coach on the Lumberjacks' staff.
Division II players capable of making the jump to the NFL are rare. NFLDraftScout.com currently lists another D-II center, Slippery Rock's Brandon Fusco as a draftable prospect. After reviewing Boggs' tape against Western Oregon (game played 9/25), I believe he too has a chance at the pros.
Boggs (6024, 296 pounds) is an athletic and powerful prospect. Against the Wolves, he demonstrated the quick feet and balance to pull and lock up back seven defenders in space. In short yardage situations, he played with good leverage and showed that he can drive his opponent off the ball. Boggs was alert and active in pass protection, sliding well laterally and providing a nice pop to his target due to good upper body strength.
Offensive line coaches will like Boggs' tenacity and nastiness on the field. Boggs likes to set the tone with pancake blocks and does a good job of striking the defender, sensing when they're off-balance and driving them into the ground. At times, Boggs is too concerned with making the emphatic block, allowing his hands to slip outside the numbers.
Pro scouts visited Humboldt State last year with the specific goal of checking out Boggs. Despite the attention, Boggs, I've been told, was not among the prospects initially graded as "draftable" by National or BLESTO, the two scouting services most NFL teams rely on. Considering this year's weaker than average class of senior centers and guards, however, Boggs may have enough game to warrant an invitation to a senior all-star game where obvious questions about his level of competition and ability to enjoy success outside of the Lumberjacks scheme could be answered.
Scouts certainly can't argue with his production on the field. Boggs was recognized by the Great Northwest Athletic Conference coaches as this year's GNAC Offensive Lineman of the Year. The recognition was hardly a surprise. In fact, Boggs has earned First-Team all-conference honors after each of the past three seasons.
Posted on: October 20, 2010 9:06 am
Some of you may have noticed that my fellow Senior Analyst Chad Reuter took over the blog for the past few days. He did an admirable job with a detailed breakdown of Iowa defensive end Adrian Clayborn as the Prospect of the Week and Slippery Rock center Brandon Fusco as our Diamond in the Rough .
Chad took over because I was on a short deer-hunting trip in Washington state with my father, brother and a few close friends. The annual trip is one of the reasons I have not accepted an NFL scouting position. I love football, but my family and our annual trips together come first.
Getting back yesterday, I spent much of the evening reviewing film and talking to contacts within the league. While I absolutely agree with selection of Clayborn as our senior prospect of the week, here are several other players that caught my (and scouts') attention with strong performances on Saturday.
OLB/DE Chris Carter, Fresno State : Carter registered nine tackles, including four tackles for loss and three sacks and forced two fumbles in the Bulldogs' 33-10 win over New Mexico State.
DT Guy Miller, Colorado State: The 6-3, 302 pounder broke the CSU record with 4.5 sacks against UNLV Saturday. He'd been rated as a likely free agent prior to the contest and had only two sacks to this point, but the dominating effort left a strong impression on two league insiders I spoke to who attended/viewed this game.
WR/RS Jerrel Jernigan, Troy : Jernigan, previously highlighted as Diamond in the Rough , deserved consideration again this week after a 188 all-purpose yard, two touchdown performance in the 31-24 win over Louisiana-Lafayette. Jernigan caught six passes for 77 yards, including the game-winning touchdown in the fourth quarter. He also returned a punt for a 75-yard touchdown. Jernigan has been invited to the Senior Bowl .
WR/RS Dwayne Harris, East Carolina: Against quality ACC competition, Harris exploded for a career-high 260 all-purpose yards Saturday versus North Carolina State. Harris caught nine passes for 91 yards in ECU's thrilling 33-27 victory and contributed another 95 on kick returns and 75 on punt returns.
WR Armon Binns, Cincinnati: Binns caught a career-high eight passes for 175 yards and three scores in the Bearcats exciting come-from-behind win over Louisville Friday night. For his efforts Binns also was recognized as the Big East's Offensive Player of the Week.
S Mark Barron, Alabama: Scouts love Barron's instincts and versatility and both were on display Saturday against Ole Miss. Barron registered seven tackles, including five solos, an interception, tackle for loss and a quarterback pressure.
ILB Chris White, Mississippi State: White was all over the field for the Bulldogs in their impressive 10-7 win over Florida, Saturday. He earned SEC Defensive Player of the Week honors with 11 tackles (including nine solos), as well as 4.5 tackles for loss against the Gators. White is among the conference leaders with 57 tackles, 12 tackles for loss and five sacks so far this season.
OLB Blake Sorensen, Wisconsin: Sorenson's game-clinching interception with only a few minutes remaining sealed the Badgers upset bid over Ohio State Saturday, but was only part of his impressive game. Sorensen also registered a career-high 10 tackles, including a tackle for loss.
Category: NFL Draft
Tags: Adrian Clayborn, Alabama, Armon Binns, Blake Sorensen, Brandon Fusco, Chad Reuter, Chris Carter, Chris White, Cincinnati, Colorado State, Dwayne Harris, East Carolina, Florida, Fresno State, Guy Miller, Iowa, Jerrel Jernigan, Louisville, Mark Barron, Mississippi State, NC State, New Mexico State, Ohio State, Ole Miss, Senior Bowl, Slippery Rock, Troy, UNLV, Wisconsin
Posted on: October 18, 2010 11:37 am
This week's Diamond in the Rough is provided by NFLDraftScout.com Senior Analyst Chad Reuter. Any comments should be sent to email@example.com
Most people may think that a scout watching Saturday's Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference Western Division match-up between Slippery Rock and California (PA) would be focused on Cal's quarterback, Josh Portis. The former Florida and Maryland passer had some up and downs during the contest (10-13, 150 yards, 3 TD, but took 5 sacks) in the team's 28-3 win -- but when Portis was on the sideline, my eyes joined those of many scouts in checking out the Rock's four-year starting center, Brandon Fusco.