Tag:NFLDraftScout.com
Posted on: March 11, 2011 7:10 pm
Edited on: March 11, 2011 7:12 pm
 

Jacquizz Rodgers cuts 40 time to 4.47 at Pro Day

Representatives from an estimated 25 NFL teams saw Oregon State junior running back Jacquizz Rodgers slice his time in the 40-yard dash from an electronically timed 4.74 at the Combine to 4.47, according to the university's offical website .

The vastly improved time in the 40-yard dash should help ease concerns about Rodgers' speed. While scouts knew the dimunitive (5-6, 196 pound) Rodgers was not a traditional speed back, teams would be hesistant to draft a short back lacking enough burst to run away from most defensive linemen. Like with Alabama's Mark Ingram, savvy scouts knew not to be too worried about Rodgers' timed speed, however.

Despite his Combine times, Rodgers' balance, vision and surprising power helped him generate All Pac-10 after each of his three seasons for the Beavers. His lateral agility and quick acceleration make him more elusive than his marginal speed might indicate.

Rodgers didn't just boost his stock with his speed. He also measured in taller today at Oregon State's Pro Day. In fact, according to the team's report, Rodgers was initially measured in at 5-07 Friday. A re-measure put him at 5066 or 5-6 and 3/4." Rodgers had been "officially" measured at 5057 (an eighth of an inch under 5-06") in Indianapolis.

Rodgers is NFLDraftScout.com's No. 11 rated running back and viewed as a potential mid-round pick.

Rodgers wasn't the only Beaver to boost his Combine performance Friday.

Center Alex Linnenkohl, rated No. 8 at the position by NFLDraftScout.com improved his bench repetitions of 225 pounds from 24 at the Combine to 31 today, according to Aaron Fentress of the Oregonian .

Oregon State's other highly touted prospect -- defensive tackle Stephen Paea -- remains unable to fully workout for scouts after it was discovered at the Senior Bowl that he'd torn the meniscus in his right knee. This injury kept him from performing in all but Monday's initial practice in Mobile and unable to do most of the workout at the Combine. Of course, the one drill that the two-time Morris Trophy winner was able to compete in was the bench press -- where he shattered the Combine record with a jaw-dropping 49 repetitions of 225 pounds. Sources close to Paea claim that the 49 reps was no surprise. He'd been shooting for 50.

Paea, according to the website's report, is expected to workout for scouts in Corvalis later this month.




Posted on: March 11, 2011 2:02 pm
 

Notre Dame TE Rudolph healed, working out April 7

Kyle Rudolph, the consensus top tight end prospect of the 2011 draft, has healed from the torn hamstring that sidelined him for much of the 2010 season and will be working out for scouts at Notre Dame's April 7 Pro Day, according to a report.

Eric Hansen of the WSBT South Bend Tribune quotes Rudolph as saying, "I finally feel back to my old self, maybe better. I feel that I have the explosiveness back that I used to have. I don't feel the pain anymore. I've gotten my stride back."

Rudolph, NFLDraftScout.com's No. 37th rated player overall , has the physical skills to translate well to the NFL. At 6-6, 259 pounds, the Irish junior has the bulk scouts are looking for in a traditional tight end and Hansen cites sources close to Rudolph who expect him to run in the "neighborhood" of the 4.6s at the workout. The Pro Day workout will be critical to Rudolph's final NFL grade. He wasn't able to work out at the Combine.

While possessing the physical tools to be successful, Rudolph was not particularly productive for the Irish. In three seasons, Rudolph posted the numbers that some of the other top tight ends of the 2011 draft class may have put up in one year (90 catches for 1,032 yards and 8 touchdowns). His sophomore season was his most productive one. Despite missing two games with a shoulder injury, Rudolph caught a career high 33 passes for 364 yards and three touchdowns in 2010.

Scouts love his upside but are worried about his durability. Rudolph has missed nine games over the past two seasons due to the shoulder and hamstring injuries. He was forced to undergo surgery to re-attach his right hamstring, after the muscle and surrounding tendons were ripped from the bone in the fourth game of the year (Stanford).

Posted on: March 9, 2011 8:40 am
 

A day later & scouts still buzzing about Mallett

With all of the attention swirling around Cam Newton's Pro Day at Auburn yesterday, not enough national attention is going towards the more impressive throwing session put forth by Arkansas' Ryan Mallett, at least in the estimation of some NFL scouts.

NFLDraftScout.com anticipated the strong workout and had a man on the scene, detailing the session from the inside .

For my own information, however, I contacted various league sources also at the workout.

One high-level source working for a team expected to draft a quarterback this year, described Mallett as "demonstrating extremely high level velocity and accuracy" throughout the workout.

Another source - a regional scout familiar with Newton and Mallett - characterized it in another way.

"From what I saw of [Newton's] performance online, the cameras were at the wrong workout. [Mallett] proved he's the most talented passer yesterday, just like he did in Indy. I know you saw him at the Combine , but he was even better here."

Neither source provided the number of passes attempted or completed from Mallett's Pro Day, leaving us with only Mallett's disappointing time in the 40-yard dash and vertical jump as the only quantifiable numbers from the workout. With no way to compare apples to apples on their velocity and accuacy, many are comparing Mallett's athletic drills to Newton's and other quarterbacks.

Clearly, Mallett is slower and less athletic overall than scouts would prefer. The 5.37 second time he ran in the 40-yard dash is sloooow even for quarterback standards and the 26" vertical jump didn't show much explosive athleticism, but in comparison, a certain former Michigan quarterback -- some guy named Brady -- was clocked at 5.23 at the 2000 Combine and only jumped 24.5" inches -- and that was at only 211 pounds. Mallett measured in at 247 pounds.

I'm not about to project Mallett as the second coming of Tom Brady -- they are vastly different quarterbacks -- but it is important to note that the numbers some will use to describe the Razorback passer's Pro Day performance aren't the story.

Mallett is the draft's most talented passer. If a team can come to grips with his off-field question marks, he certainly has the talent to warrant a first round selection .

Posted on: March 6, 2011 12:26 pm
 

Sources: Fairley, not Cam, "one to worry about"

Much of the attention following the Combine has been centered on the team interviews with quarterbacks Cam Newton, Ryan Mallett and others, but according to three sources from different clubs, it is another high profile player who set off the most alarms at the Combine.

Auburn defensive tackle Nick Fairley was described as a "JUCO kid to the core" by one longtime personnel man, speaking on the condition of anonymity.

By "JUCO" the source is, of course, referring to the fact that Fairley played junior college football (Copiah-Lincoln Community College) prior to starring at Auburn. Asked to elaborate why being a "JUCO kid" is a bad thing, the source explained.

"Just because a player went to a junior college doesn't mean, he's a bad guy or won't be successful at this level, obviously. There are lots of junior college players who have gone on to great NFL careers."

The stereotype is that JUCO players aren't as smart, hard-working, and well coached. They are also viewed by many clubs as players most likely to have had off-field troubles in the past and potentially more in the future. The source refused to go into specifics, but said, "Everyone is coming down hard on the quarterback, but [Fairley] is the one to worry about."

Despite measuring in at a shade under 6-4 (6037) and lighter than expected (291 pounds), Fairley "looked soft," according to the source. This first impression of Fairley's conditioning was only reinforced by his "limited" understanding of defensive schemes during team interviews. The source also referred to the fact that Fairley doesn't use his hands well and has been able to be successful largely due to his natural talent.

"Oh, I'm not saying he's not talented. Hell, he might be the most talented player in the whole damn thing. But, he's no slam dunk at this level. Not the slam dunk people who watched him tear up the SEC or in the big game [BCS National Championship] might think."

The other sources weren't as forthcoming with details, but didn't sound surprised when I told them I heard that Fairley was slipping down boards and that, as such, I had pushed him from No. 2 in the mock draft I'd written prior to the Combine to No. 8 in my current one.
Posted on: March 4, 2011 12:54 pm
Edited on: March 4, 2011 1:13 pm
 

Confirmed -- LB Matthews to work out at Pro Day

Oregon inside linebacker Casey Matthews "will do all drills except for the bench," at Oregon's Pro Day March 10 his agent, David Dunn, confirmed this morning.

Matthews, NFLDraftScout.com's No. 7 rated inside linebacker , injured the shoulder while performing the bench press drill at the scouting combine Feb. 27. The injury kept him from performing linebacker drills the next day.

Matthews said, according to NFL.com's Steve Wyche , that the injury occurred during the 14th repetition of 225 pounds. Matthews characterized the injury as a "freak accident" but also noted that he had suffered an injury to his left shoulder as a freshman.

Matthews, whose athletic pedigree has been well documented, emerged from his famous family's shadow this season to earn First Team All-Pac-10 honors lastseason with 79 tackles, nine tackles for loss, three interceptions and three fumble recoveries. Like his older brother, Clay, Casey Matthews' instincts and propensity to make the big play at critical moments stand out -- especially in this year's relatively weak class of linebackers.

His forced fumble of Cam Newton in the closing moments of the BCS National Championship game put Oregon in position to score the winning points.

Posted on: March 3, 2011 6:17 pm
 

23 teams watch Taylor, Watkins at Baylor Pro Day

The official start of the Pro Day season was today with 23 teams traveling to Waco, Texas to watch a handful of former Baylor Bears work out only two days after the annual Scouting Combine shut down.

Baylor's top two prospects -- defensive tackle Phil Taylor and offensive guard Danny Watkins -- stood on their Combine performances, but worked out "extremely well" in positional drills, according to Gil Brandt's sources . Taylor's strength, length and surprising overall athleticism could make him a first round pick. I am currently projecting him to be the Jets' choice with the 30th pick , overall, of the first round. I'm also quite high on Watkins, listing him among my top players on the Big Board.

The news wasn't quite as good for Baylor safety Byron Landor, a 6-0, 212 pound safety who posted 127 tackles this past season -- the most of any non-linebacker in all of the FBS. The JUCO transfer was a surprising non-invite to the Combine despite his production, All-Big-12 hype and this year's relatively poor class of safeties.

Landor was unable to take full advantage of the heavily attended workout, coming in a slower than scouts would like at 4.68 seconds in the 40-yard dash.
Posted on: March 3, 2011 12:59 pm
 

Video, radio analysis -- NDS brings it all

NFLDraftScout.com is working to bring you the very best in NFL Draft coverage, expanding into podcasts and videos through our partnership with CBSSports.com.

My fellow Senior Analyst Chad Reuter spoke with Lauren Shehadi Tuesday in wrapping up some of the Combine's biggest Risers and Fallers. You can find his video by clicking here.

I'll be recording a video today, discussing the top quarterback prospects.

The ever-busy Mr. Reuter was also working the airwaves for our weekly podcast. Cecil Lammey, who has done a great job with footballguys.com , was brought in to host the discussion. I'll be contributing to these podcasts most weeks, but was unavailable yesterday.

And, of course, for those who simply want to read our content rather than listen or watch us, you can always check out the information at NFLDraftScout.com or by purchasing a copy of Lindy's NFL Draft Preview online or from store shelves across the country.
Posted on: March 3, 2011 12:59 pm
 

Video, radio analysis -- NDS brings it all

NFLDraftScout.com is working to bring you the very best in NFL Draft coverage, expanding into podcasts and videos through our partnership with CBSSports.com.

My fellow Senior Analyst Chad Reuter spoke with Lauren Shehadi Tuesday in wrapping up some of the Combine's biggest Risers and Fallers. You can find his video by clicking here.

I'll be recording a video today, discussing the top quarterback prospects.

The ever-busy Mr. Reuter was also working the airwaves for our weekly podcast. Cecil Lammey, who has done a great job with footballguys.com , was brought in to host the discussion. I'll be contributing to these podcasts most weeks, but was unavailable yesterday.

And, of course, for those who simply want to read our content rather than listen or watch us, you can always check out the information at NFLDraftScout.com or by purchasing a copy of Lindy's NFL Draft Preview online or from store shelves across the country.
 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com