The 2017 NFL Draft has been lauded by executives, scouts and coaches for a peculiarity of talent accessible during several marquee spots. While a category lacks a plug-and-play quarterback with evident star power, teams could find disproportion makers during pass rusher, using back, parsimonious end, reserve and cornerback. Although we trust Clemson’s Deshaun Watson, North Carolina’s Mitchell Trubisky, Notre Dame’s DeShone Kizer, Texas Tech’s Patrick Mahomes and Cal’s Davis Webb eventually could rise into high-level starters, they aren’t seasoned adequate to take a joining by charge on Day 1.
At using back, a 2017 category could hint a rebirth during a position, with LSU’s Leonard Fournette, Stanford’s Christian McCaffrey, Florida State’s Dalvin Cook and presumably Oklahoma’s Joe Mixon paving a approach as energetic talents with considerable skills as RB1s. Fournette is a reversion during a position with an old-school diversion built on strength, energy and violence. While he is not utterly a versatile talent like Dallas Cowboys Pro Bowler Ezekiel Elliott, Fournette is some-more than able of putting a authorization on his behind as a imperishable workhorse runner.
The parsimonious finish position facilities a series of bomb pass catchers with receiver-like athleticism and NBA energy brazen size. Alabama’s O.J. Howard headlines a category as a big-bodied pass catcher with soothing hands and blazing speed. He is a singular parsimonious finish in that he has a ability to widen a margin while also possessing a balance, physique control and lively to browbeat a diversion as a chain-mover between a hashes. Miami’s David Njoku and Mississippi’s Evan Engram are new-school parsimonious ends able of strenuous defenders in a container or on a outward with their ultra-athletic games.
On a defensive side of a ball, Texas AM’s Myles Garrett is a marquee prospect. He has a size, strength and athleticism to be an all-time good during a position. While there are questions about his engine and prolongation opposite chosen competition, Garrett is positively a blue-chip awaiting during a position. Stanford’s Solomon Thomas and Tennessee’s Derek Barnett both have well-developed palm skills that could capacitate them to browbeat as dilemma players in a NFL. Missouri’s Charles Harris is an underrated pass rusher with a diversion that’s done for third-down situations.
Alabama’s Reuben Foster and Florida’s Jarrad Davis are a climax resources of a normal linebacker class, though Temple’s Haason Reddick also could be a star-quality playmaker on a second level. The former walk-on reserve incited dilemma rusher is a Tasmanian Devil with a uninterrupted engine and knack for playmaking.
In a secondary, teams have a resources of options accessible during reserve and cornerback. LSU’s Jamal Adams and Ohio State’s Malik Hooker are a tip dual safeties, though they go about their business in opposite ways. Adams is a “smasher” who excels nearby a line of struggle though also displays a athleticism to play in space as a deep-middle defender. Hooker is some-more of a healthy core fielder. His well-developed operation and round skills could concede him to lead a joining in picks as a immature player. Washington’s Budda Baker is listed as a safety, though his considerable skills as a container defender could make him a dangerous nickel dilemma in many systems.
Ohio State’s Marshon Lattimore has been dubbed a “shutdown corner” of a category due to his speed, athleticism and transformation skills. He is as liquid as they come as a corner, though questions about his damage story (hamstring issues) lead to concerns about his ability to consistently flower as a CB1. If he is healthy and available, he could be a star. But he contingency uncover folks that he can be a constant choice on a island.
How does a newest mount of rising rookies smoke-stack adult from a standpoint of pristine pro potential? I’ve grouped them into a following categories below: All-Pros, Pro Bowlers and red-star prospects:
These are a chosen prospects in this category — they should arrange among a tip 5 players during their particular positions in dual to 3 years.
1) Myles Garrett, DE, Texas AM
2) Jamal Adams, S, LSU
3) O.J. Howard, TE, Alabama
4) Leonard Fournette, RB, LSU
5) Reuben Foster, ILB, Alabama
6) Joe Mixon, RB, Oklahoma (Serious impression issues positively sojourn a concern, though this is where his pristine talent would place him)
7) Malik Hooker, S, Ohio State
8) Adoree’ Jackson, PR/KR, USC
These prospects are regarded as disproportion makers formed usually on their talent. They should make evident contributions as rookies and arrange among a tip 10 during their position within dual to 3 years.
1) Solomon Thomas, DL, Stanford
2) Derek Barnett, DE, Tennessee
3) Dalvin Cook, RB, Florida State
4) Mike Williams, WR, Clemson
5) Deshaun Watson, QB, Clemson
6) Christian McCaffrey, RB, Stanford
7) John Ross, WR, Washington
8) Budda Baker, S, Washington
9) David Njoku, TE, Miami
10) Jonathan Allen, DL, Alabama
11) Marshon Lattimore, CB, Ohio State
12) Jarrad Davis, LB, Florida
13) Charles Harris, DE, Missouri
14) Mitchell Trubisky, QB, UNC
15) Haason Reddick, LB, Temple
16) Corey Davis, WR, Western Michigan
17) Evan Engram, TE, Ole Miss
On a “Move a Sticks” podcast, Daniel Jeremiah and we frequently plead how scouts will mount on a list for guys they trust will outperform their breeze status. In scouting parlance, these players are called “red-star” guys, since they are unfailing to make it in a joining regardless of their circumstances. we surveyed a 2017 category for players with a right skills and intangibles to perform improved than their breeze grades suggest. Here are my 5 red-star prospects to watch:
1) DeShone Kizer, QB, Notre Dame: The Notre Dame standout lifted a few eyebrows with his new comments suggesting he hexed a brew of Tom Brady’s football comprehension and Cam Newton’s athleticism, though we trust a 6-foot-4, 233-pound passer has a tip roof of any quarterback in a 2017 class. Kizer not usually possesses a prototypical size, arm talent and comprehension typically displayed by a “elites” during a position, though he flashes a kind of athleticism to conflict defenses with his arm or legs. While skeptics harp on his inconsistencies as a passer and leader, there are few quarterbacks able of creation “wow” throws with glorious timing, expectation and correctness like Kizer. If he lands with a right group underneath a right conduct coach/offensive coordinator, Kizer could freshness into a Pro Bowl-caliber actor early in his career.
2) Dede Westbrook, WR, Oklahoma: The Biletnikoff Award leader is frequency mentioned as a tip awaiting during a position — partially due to some off-field impression concerns that embody domestic assault accusations — nonetheless he exhibits all of a on-field qualities teams demeanour for in big-play receivers. Westbrook is an bomb speedster (clocked during a reported 4.34-second 40 time during his pro day) with discriminating route-running skills and gummy hands. He averaged 18.0 yards per locate during his dual seasons during Oklahoma and totaled 21 touchdowns, including 17 in 2016. With a diversion and support (5-foot-11, 178 pounds) that’s eerily identical to DeSean Jackson, observers should compensate tighten courtesy to Westbrook as a immature player.
3) Jabrill Peppers, S, Michigan: The Wolverines’ Swiss Army blade has been downgraded by some teams for his miss of round prolongation (only one career interception) — as good as his certain exam for a intermix representation during a NFL Scouting Combine — though on a margin of play, we see a versatile playmaker with a multiple of grit, athleticism and skills that typically translates into plain prolongation during a subsequent level. Peppers has knowledge personification 8 opposite positions as a collegian (S, LB, CB, nickel, QB, RB, WR and returner) and brings copiousness of extract as a three-way player. While skeptics consternation if he has a skills to be a high-level defender, we see an active reserve able of personification in a box, container or low center as a hybrid player. Not to mention, he is a Pro Bowl-caliber punt returner able of holding a round to a residence from anywhere on a field.
4) Chidobe Awuzie, CB, Colorado: There’s always a place in a joining for smart, tough and earthy cover corners with versatile skills. That’s because we would design Awuzie to emerge as a standout actor early in his career as an outside/slot dilemma able of personification male or zone. The Colorado product displays considerable transformation skills and technique, while flashing clever instincts and recognition in coverage. With Awuzie also displaying a eagerness to bump using backs and receivers in space, he is one of a many finish dilemma prospects in this category and should flower as a starter early in his career.
5) Josh Malone, WR, Tennessee: The Vols’ WR1 has flown underneath a radar for many of a breeze process, though a 6-foot-3, 200-pound pass catcher is utterly interesting formed on his multiple of size, speed and round skills. Malone is a straight playmaker who excels when asked to use his 4.40 speed to blow past sleeping defenders on go-routes and posts from a outside. In addition, he is a cunning middle track curtain with a knack for removing open on speed cuts (digs and outs). Given Malone’s ability to run each track in a book with speed and precision, a Tennessee standout competence be a warn No. 1 receiver for an NFL patrol in a few years.
Follow Bucky Brooks on Twitter @BuckyBrooks.