Here’s a quick breakdown regarding some of the latest news pertaining to some of this years draft prospects. Be sure to check out our most recent 2012 NFL Mock Draft which includes three rounds. We’d love to hear what you think.
Tony Pauline of DraftInsider.com reported yesterday that Arizona State ILB Vontaze Burfict showed up to pre-Combine training “soft and out of shape” last month. Burfict is reportedly dealing with a hamstring injury.
There have been concerns about his ability to control his emotions on the field which led to a staggering amount of personal foul calls with ASU. Pauline notes that Burfict currently is not able to complete 15 reps of 225-pounds on the bench press which is a whole nother issue in itself. Burfict was once seen as first-round talent but his draft stock is trending downward and could begin to fall rather quickly if he puts together a poor performance at the Scouting Combine next week.
Mike Mayock added his take on the middle linebacker.
“I’m not a fan at all,” said Mayock. “I just watched a bunch of his tape the other day. I came away unimpressed.“
“His instincts aren’t good,” states Mayock. “He gets enveloped by bigger bodies and he runs around blocks. I don’t see first round at all.”
Mayock addressed the rumors about South Carolina WR Alshon Jeffery’s weight this afternoon during his conference with the media.
“Alshon Jeffery does not separate,” said Mayock. “What those guys run is important. He needs to run somewhere in those mid-4.5s.”
This has forced Mayock to move Jeffery out of the first-round until he proves that he answer some the question marks.
“Big and fast is good,” said Mayock. “Big and slow is bad. Bottom line is, he has got to run well.”
Mayock showed his support for Texas A&M QB Ryan Tannehill this afternoon and mentioned that he’s a first-round talent.
“He’s got everything you want,” Mayock said. “He’s got size, he’s got arm strength, really good athlete. All you have to do is look at his tape as a wide receiver two years ago. He’s a big, fast kid with a really good arm.”
If there’s any concern relating to Tannehill it has to be his limited experience at the quarterback position. He only played 19 games while at Texas A&M after being converted from a wide receiver. Mayock mentions that he needs to improve his anticipation but is confident that he can develop into a good quarterback.
Pauline reports that Wisconsin WR Nick Toon is still dealing with “significant foot pain as he trains for the upcoming NFL draft. Toon will almost certainly skip any running drills at this year’s Combine because of the nagging foot injuries that he’s been dealing with.
Toon has great size and athleticism but durability concerns tend to have a huge impact on players draft stock which doesn’t bode well for him. At this point in time, you can expect to see him fall back into the third or possibly even the fourth-round.
NFL.com’s Mike Mayock mentioned that he has Baylor WR Kendall Wright listed as his #2 wide receiver in this years and expects to see him run in the “mid-4.3s” at the Combine next week.
Wright has been shooting up draft boards in the last month and some reports have even mentioned that he could go as high as #7 overall to the Jacksonville Jaguars.
During the same clip on the NFL.com, Mayock mentions that North Carolina OLB Zach Brown hold the school 60 meter record for the entire student body. That’s incredible when you consider that he’s 237 pounds! Mayock thinks that he has a chance to clock a 4.35 forty at the combine. It’s hard to imagine that he would he make it out of the first-round if he’s able to post that kind of time.
Mayock also released his Pre-Combine position rankings yesterday and he lists LSU WR Rueben Randle as the #4 wide receiver prospect in this years draft.
What’s interesting here is that Rueben comes in above South Carolina’s Alshon Jeffery and Rutgers Mohammed Sanu. Many felt that Randle would stay another year at LSU before entering the draft considering that the quarterback play will most likely improve which could really boost his draft stock but he chose to come out anyway. Randle is seen as a fringe first-round talent but receivers also have the opportunity to showcase their ability and wow scouts at the Combine like Julio Jones did a season ago.
Mayock has Georgia TE Orson Charles as the #1 tight end prospect in this years draft.
Many draft experts have had Clemson’s Dwayne Allen and Stanford’s Coby Fleener ahead of Charles but the Georgia prospect could post an amazing 40 time of 4.4 at the combine. Blocking has been one of the knocks on him but the recent impact of guys like Rob Gronkowski have showcased the mismatches that can come from having a great receiving tight end and that’s exactly what Charles could end becoming.