Tuesday, January 16, 2018

2018 Lions Incidental LB Contacts

LB James Hearns:

James Hearns will not play in the TaxSlayer Bowl against Mississippi State (12-26-17):  https://twitter.com/JamesHearns21/status/945769321615233024

Here's what the defense looks like when we combine Louisville and Kentucky's players (DE: James Hearns, Louisville:  A couple of weeks ago, this spot might have gone to fellow Louisville defensive end Jonathan Greenard. But Hearns was unstoppable in Louisville’s game against Virginia, totaling three sacks and forcing three fumbles. He added another sack and a forced fumble Saturday against Syracuse. As the Cards’ defense struggled in October, Hearns was reduced to a third-down reserve at times. Now, he again appears to be the team’s best pass rusher, with a team-high seven sacks.) (11-23-17):  https://www.courier-journal.com/story/sports/college/kentucky/2017/11/23/louisville-kentucky-football-all-rivalry-team-defense/885950001/

Stock Report: Auburn's Johnson catching eye of Heisman voters, NFL scouts (James Hearns, DE, Louisville, rSR. (6-2, 249, 4.74, #99):  Against Virginia on Saturday, it was a game of threes for Hearns -- three sacks, three tackles for loss and three forced fumbles. The Cavaliers' offensive tackles had trouble slowing down his motor off the edge and even though several of his pressures could be attributed to the coverage, Hearns deserves credit for having the hustle and speed to get home.  He has the arc speed to get his inside shoulder past the outside shoulder of the edge blocker, but he showed a variety of moves in this contest, including an efficient inside spin move that flushed the quarterback from the pocket. Hearns is more of a straight-line athlete and lacks ideal change-of-direction skills to make tight turns, but his quickness out of his cuts allows him to elude blockers in space.  His strong hands on tackle attempts also stands out, punching the ball out on normal hits. Although he finds himself up-field past the quarterback too often and can be controlled in the run game, Hearns competes with the hunger and play speed that will give him a chance in the NFL.) (11-13-17):  http://www.gwinnettprepsports.com/sportsxchange/stock-report-auburn-s-johnson-catching-eye-of-heisman-voters/article_2d119889-6b5a-5fec-9c32-7aa2f009a3d7.html

Ranking Louisville football's 10 best players in 2017 (7. James Hearns, DE/OLB, Sr.:  An athletic pass rusher, Hearns established himself last season with a team-high eight sacks, including 4.5 through in the first four games. Hearns also has a talent for knocking the ball away from the quarterback, tying for No. 4 nationally and No. 2 all-time at U of L with five forced fumbles in 2016. The 6-3 Hearns is listed at 248 pounds, but he said he actually weighs between 238 and 244 on any given day, having shed weight in order to become even quicker off the edge.) (8-22-17):  https://www.courier-journal.com/story/sports/college/louisville/2017/08/22/ranking-louisville-footballs-10-best-players-2017-steve-jones/589943001/

Scouting the ACC: Louisville (James Hearns is another slightly undersized college defensive end who terrorizes opponents behind the line of scrimmage. Hearns is fast up the field and bends off the edge to disrupt the action. He needs more experience making plays in space but has an upside.  I grade both players as third-round prospects though predraft medicals are critical for Young.)(7-25-17):  http://draftanalyst.com/scouting-acc-louisville

LB Joel Lanning:

2018 East-West Shrine Game: Practice Report (Iowa State's Joel Lanning was a tackling machine after switching from quarterback to linebacker for his senior year. Lanning has been a tough presence in the tackle box all week. For having made the position change so recently, Lanning has intriguing instincts. The 6-foot-2, 230-pounder has versatile size and looks like an intelligent defender. Lanning could blossom with more development at the pro level.) (1-17-18):  http://walterfootball.com/eastwest2018practice6.php

Iowa State’s two-way star Joel Lanning practicing at linebacker for East-West Shrine Game (1-15-17):  http://www.tampabay.com/sports/college/Iowa-State-s-two-way-star-Joel-Lanning-practicing-at-linebacker-for-East-West-Shrine-Game_164537028

Joel Lanning bringing back ironman football for Iowa State (10-9-17):  http://www.espn.com/blog/ncfnation/post/_/id/138738/joel-lanning-bringing-back-ironman-football-for-iowa-state

Matt Campbell pleased with Joel Lanning’s QB-to-LB transition (7-17-17):  http://collegefootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2017/07/17/matt-campbell-pleased-with-joel-lannings-qb-to-lb-transition/

LB Ja'Von Rolland-Jones:

East-West Shrine game, NFLPA bowl 2018 NFL draft prospects to watch (Edge Defender, Ja'Von Rolland-Jones - 2017 season grade: 87.6 - Ja’Von Rolland Jones isn’t the biggest or the fastest edge-rusher, but he’s been one of the most productive in all of college football for the last four years. Rolland-Jones is a rare college pass-rusher who actually had more than 10 sacks per season for four straight years. He has racked up a career total of 53 sacks, 30 QB hits and 112 hurries for Arkansas State. His 2017 campaign was no different, as he had 14 sacks, six QB hits, 32 total pressures and 32 hurries on his 347 pass-rushing snaps. Rolland-Jones also contributed 20 run stops, proving he’s not just a pass-rusher.) (1-17-18):  https://www.profootballfocus.com/news/draft-east-west-shrine-game-nflpa-bowl-2018-nfl-draft-prospects-to-watch

2018 Shrine Game: West Practice (Monday-Tuesday) (Arkansas State’s Ja’Von Rolland-Jones is moving to LB from being a rush end in college. It’s a prudent business decision for the Red Wolves standout, though it might not pay immediate dividends. The athleticism is there, and when he lined up at edge he was generally effective. He still needs a lot of work on avoiding blocks and anticipating the action while not lined up with a hand in the ground.) (1-16-18):  https://football.realgm.com/analysis/3028/2018-Shrine-Game-West-Practice-Monday-Tuesday

East-West Shrine Game 2018: Top 20 players to watch (8. Ja’Von Rolland-Jones, DE, Arkansas State:
Ja’Von Rolland-Jones is the all-time sack leader in college football with 40. He also is in the top 10 all time with 60.5 career tackles for loss. He missed his first season on campus because of an injury, and the following season, he was a freshman All-American performer.  In his past three seasons (including 2017), Rolland-Jones has 48.5 tackles for loss and 32.5 sacks. He wins with lower body flexibility and an explosive first step. He isn’t overly powerful, but he has a knack of getting into the backfield. If he can get stronger and develop a couple go-to counter moves, Rolland-Jones could be a good third-down pass rushing specialist.) (1-15-18):  http://www.sportingnews.com/nfl/news/east-west-shrine-game-2018-top-players-to-watch-nfl-draft/1q73pycmlpt19wgalwk35fg7

Shrine Practice- Monday Report (Who Didn’t Impress - Ja'Von Rolland-Jones:  I was a bit surprised as Rolland-Jones looked lost at times.  He struggled finding the ball and all too often was easily washed from the action by a single blocker.) (1-15-17):  http://draftanalyst.com/shrine-practice-monday-report

Shrine Game Prospects -- The Defense (Ja'Von Rolland-Jones/DE-OLB/Arkansas State: The record-breaking pass rusher is drawing a lot of opinions around the scouting community. While most feel Rolland-Jones is a late-round pick, there are a few teams who’ve stamped him as a potential second-day selection. He mostly came out of a three-point stance at Arkansas State, so it will be interesting to see if he’s used at linebacker or asked to play in space at any point during the practices.) (1-14-17):  http://draftanalyst.com/shrine-game-prospects-defense

2018 NFL draft prospects to watch during college bowls, Week 1 (Arkansas State edge defender Ja’Von Rolland-Jones:  Few, if any, edge rushers have been as consistently productive over the past four seasons as Rolland-Jones. He has tallied at least 11 sacks in each of his four years at Arkansas State, topping out at 17 in 2016. This past season, he had 14 sacks and 49 total pressures, helping him rank third in pass-rush productivity among 4-3 defensive end prospects. In the middle of the season, he had a torrid four-game stretch in which he ripped out nine sacks, three hits and 19 hurries.) (12-15-17):  https://www.profootballfocus.com/news/draft-going-bowling-2018-nfl-draft-prospects-to-watch-week-1

Scouting the Camellia Bowl: Middle Tennessee vs. Arkansas State (Ja'Von Rolland-Jones could be one of the best pass rushers no one talks about.   The four-year starter finished the regular season just a half-sack shy of the career NCAA FBS mark owned by Terrell Suggs. His senior numbers included 13 sacks and 18 tackles for loss. Rolland-Jones is an undersized college defensive end who shows speed and quickness off the edge and will likely stand over tackle at the next level. He’s accepted an invitation to participate in the Shrine Game, and it will be interesting to see if they use him in linebacker drills during the week of practice.) (12-14-17):  http://draftanalyst.com/scouting-camellia-bowl-middle-tennessee-vs-arkansas-state

15 non-Power-Five prospects that will be NFL stars (9. Ja'Von Rolland-Jones, LB, Arkansas State:  Look for teams to sign onto Rolland-Jones in the second or third round. He already has 40 career sacks, and is willing to play the run as well.) (11-16-17):  http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000878006/article/15-nonpowerfive-prospects-that-will-be-nfl-stars

Week 6 Risers and Sliders (Ja'Von Rolland-Jones/DE-OLB/Arkansas State: Rolland-Jones is someone I’ve mentioned in passing since the start of the season, and he really stood out during a victory over Georgia Southern. His final stats included five tackles, two tackles for loss, two sacks and a quarterback hurry. Primarily coming out of a three-point stance, Rolland-Jones is quick, athletic and easily moves to every direction of the field. He should have no problem transitioning to outside linebacker at the next level.) (10-9-17):  http://draftanalyst.com/week-6-risers-sliders

LB Tegray Scales:

Mike Mayock's observations from week of Shrine Game practices (Indiana LB Tegray Scales: He showed some good man-to-man skills this week and can run to the football.) (1-18-18):  http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000907807/article/mike-mayocks-observations-from-week-of-shrine-game-practices

Why the East-West Shrine and NFLPA Collegiate all-star games matter for Lions (Tegray Scales, LB, Indiana (No. 48 West): He was an All-American in 2016 and an All-Big Ten selection this past season. A productive player throughout his time at Indiana, he had 325 tackles, 46 tackles for loss, 18 sacks, 16 passes defended and eight interceptions in his college career. Depending what defense the Lions run, he could be an intriguing selection.) (1-18-18):  http://www.espn.com/blog/detroit-lions/post/_/id/33037/why-the-east-west-shrine-and-nflpa-collegiate-all-star-games-matter-for-lions

2018 Shrine Game: West Practice (Monday-Tuesday) (This is a very athletic group, led by Wisconsin’s Leon Jacobs and Indiana’s Tegray Scales. Jacobs is a ripped athlete with quick eyes and a good burst to the point of attack. Scales has boundless energy, though he doesn’t always harness it well. He’s much better in chase mode than downfield attack mode.) (1-16-18):  https://football.realgm.com/analysis/3028/2018-Shrine-Game-West-Practice-Monday-Tuesday

East-West Shrine Game 2018: Top 20 players to watch (11. Tegray Scales, LB, Indiana:
Scales is an All-American linebacker who has been a centerpiece to the Hoosier defense for the last four seasons. He is a good overall athlete who possesses solid speed and lateral agility. He has quickness as a blitzer and can get a good jump to put himself in position to provide pressure on opposing QBs. He is solid as a run defender, displaying good gap discipline, and he keeps his shoulders square when he’s filling at the point of attack.  Scales raps up effectively as a tackler but does have some issues finishing in space. He flashes stack-and-shed ability at the point of attack, but he needs to build consistency in doing so. In coverage, he has the hip fluidity to transition vertically in man coverage. He projects best working as a hybrid linebacker and should be able to stay on the field on all three downs.) (1-15-18):  http://www.sportingnews.com/nfl/news/east-west-shrine-game-2018-top-players-to-watch-nfl-draft/1q73pycmlpt19wgalwk35fg7

2018 Prospect Preview: Tegray Scales is what DC’s covet among run-stopping LBs (8-28-17):  https://www.profootballfocus.com/news/draft-2018-prospect-preview-tegray-scales-is-what-dcs-covet-among-run-stopping-lbs

An incredibly early look at the top 100 prospects in the 2018 NFL Draft: 81-100 (81.  Tegray Scales: Scales earned third-team All-Big 10 honors in 2016 after a remarkable campaign that included 125 tackles, 24 tackles for loss, and seven sacks. Scales plays with amazing urgency and has the twitchiness and speed to back up that aggressive nature. In 2015, he had 64 tackles, five tackles for loss and three sacks. Like many of the linebackers on this list, he fits the "new-age linebacker" mold perfectly.) (6-1-17):  https://www.cbssports.com/nfl/draft/news/an-incredibly-early-look-at-the-top-100-prospects-in-the-2018-nfl-draft-81-100/

LB Kenny Young:

UCLA senior linebacker Kenny Young calls out Bruins' defense after Arizona runs wild (10-15-17):  http://www.latimes.com/sports/ucla/la-sp-ucla-football-20171015-story.html

PFF Draft Watch: Week 4 marquee matchups (Love’s school may have suffered a surprising defeat last week, but he still ranks second in the country among running backs with an overall grade of 88.1. He will try to add to his forced missed tackle-tally, which currently stands at 18 on 43 rush attempts. Doing so against UCLA’s Kenny Young may prove to be difficult, however, as the Bruin has yet to whiff this season.) (9-21-17):  https://www.profootballfocus.com/news/pff-draft-watch-week-4-marquee-matchups

Jaleel Wadood and Kenny Young are not on the field for warm-ups. Both suffered head injuries against Hawaii last week. (9-16-17):  https://twitter.com/UCLA_Nation/status/909075179870887936

Scouting the Pac-12: UCLA (Last August during my Bruins 2016 preview, I mentioned that I felt Jayon Brown, then graded as a street free agent by scouts, was one of the more underrated linebackers in the nation.  Presently I feel the same way about Bruins senior linebacker Kenny Young.  The three-year starter is a terrific football player with next-level instincts. He’s constantly around the action making plays against the run or pass and does a terrific job leading the Bruins defense.  He’s not a fast linebacker on film and speed may be a limiting factor, but I believe Young can line up in a variety of schemes at the next level.) (8-30-17):  http://draftanalyst.com/scouting-pac-12-ucla


2018 Lions Contacts

OT Greg Senat:

2018 NFL Draft Stock - East-West Shrine (Greg Senat, IT, Wagner:  Some sources felt that Senat was the best of the offensive linemen at the East-West Shrine. The 6-foot-7, 300-pounder has strength and surprising movement skills. As one scout described him, "Senat is a fire hydrant that can move." After playing at Wagner, Senat has shown the skill to make the jump in competition this week. and those tests will continue with a NFL team after the 2018 NFL Draft.) (1-18-18):  http://walterfootball.com/draft2018stock_20.php

Shrine Practice Winners -- Offense (Gregory Senat/T/Wagner: Except for the scouting diehards, few knew of Senat before Shrine week began. After his performance during three days of practice, people will be scrambling for his film. Senat was possibly the most athletic offensive lineman on the field and showed next-level ability in pass protection as well as blocking on the move. He’s tall and agile and has a lot of room for growth both physically and on the field. Senat went from undrafted free agent to late-round pick.) (1-18-18):  http://draftanalyst.com/shrine-practice-winners-offense

2018 East-West Shrine Game: Practice Report (Most of the time, the actual All-Star game is barely even an afterthought for scouts, however this East-West Shrine could be the exception, as teams think the East has some good defensive line talent to go against a strong offensive line from the West. The West offensive linemen who have earned praise are Army offensive tackle Brett Toth, Wagner offensive tackle Greg Senat, and Alberta's Mart Korte. That trio could all make rosters next fall with developmental potential.  Of that trio, some sources feel that Senat is the best of the bunch. the 6-foot-7, 300-pounder has strength and surprising movement skills. As one scout described him, "Senat is a fire hydrant who can move." After playing at Wagner, Senat has shown the skill to make the jump in competition this week, and those tests will continue with a NFL team after the draft.) (1-17-18):  http://walterfootball.com/eastwest2018practice6.php

Shrine Practice -- Tuesday PM Report (Several scouts on hand really like what they see from Wagner tackle Greg Senat but have openly said they wish he had attended an FBS/I-A program. The feeling is that Senat has next-level potential, but the coaching and lack of weight training he received at Wagner puts him behind the curve, meaning it will be a two-year process before he’s NFL-ready.) (1-16-18):  http://draftanalyst.com/shrine-practice-tuesday-pm-report

2018 Shrine Game: West Practice (Monday-Tuesday) (One player dripping with intrigue is Greg Senat from Wagner’s basketball team. At 6’6” and 294 pounds, he looks like a G League power forward. He moves like one too, and that’s a good thing in the context of playing offensive tackle. His technique remains pretty rudimentary but there is ample physical potential to work with. As one scout noted, he’s got higher upside than 2017 fourth-round pick Julie’n Davenport.) (1-16-18):  https://football.realgm.com/analysis/3028/2018-Shrine-Game-West-Practice-Monday-Tuesday

Ja'Von Rolland-Jones vs. Greg Senat (1-16-17):  https://twitter.com/JeffRisdon/status/953382864929939456

Joe Ostman vs. Greg Senat (1-16-17):  https://twitter.com/JeffRisdon/status/953373647393165314

Shrine Practice -- Monday Report (Those who impressed - Gregory Senat/T/Wagner: Senat looked as athletic as any lineman who suited up this afternoon. He was fluid, moved well on his feet and displayed a great deal of agility. He tipped the scales at 294 pounds but looks as though he has a great deal of growth potential.) (1-16-18):  http://draftanalyst.com/shrine-practice-monday-report

Detroit Lions met with Wagner offensive tackle Greg Senat (1-15-17):  http://walterfootball.com/eastwest2018interviews2.php

2018 East-West Shrine Game: Monday's West Team Practice Report (SMU defensive end Justin Lawler had a good opening practice. He did well in the one-on-ones, using speed to fly by tackles and get pressure in the pocket. Lawler's speed caused Wagner offensive tackle Greg Senat to lose his balance as Lawler flew by him. The coaches gave Senat some coaching points on maintaining his balance. Lawler (6-4, 265) has a nice frame to him to go along with speed.  Senat also made some nice plays, showing that he could be a developmental tackle as a late-round pick or undrafted free agent.) (1-14-18):  http://walterfootball.com/eastwest2018practice2.php

Shrine Game Prospects -- The Offense (Gregory Senat/T/Wagner: Senat, who plays about 40 minutes south of Fordham, could be the best-kept secret at the tackle position. The athletic blocker is long (6-foot-5.5), lean and unusually nimble. He’s a terrific pass protector who shows next-level skills blocking in motion, but Senat -- who weighs in under 280 pounds -- lacks bulk and next-level strength. If he shows any type of power in his base during run-blocking drills or in pass protection, Senat could leave Shrine practices stamped as a potential late-round prospect.) (1-14-18):  http://draftanalyst.com/shrine-game-prospects-offense

C Brian Allen:

Kiper: MSU’s ‘overachiever’ Allen has NFL Draft shot (1-18-18):  http://www.detroitnews.com/story/sports/college/michigan-state-university/2018/01/18/kiper-msus-overachiever-allen-nfl-draft-shot/109582352/

Shrine Practice Winners -- Offense (Brian Allen/C/Michigan State: Allen was impressive from the get-go; in fact he was the first player I tweeted about from the field on Monday. He’s a thick, strong blocker who showed surprising agility and skill blocking on the second level. The NFL is full of starting centers who were drafted in the late rounds -- don’t be surprised if Allen adds his name to the list.) (1-18-18):  http://draftanalyst.com/shrine-practice-winners-offense

Shrine Game Day 3 Notebook: Scouts buzz on under-the-radar prospects (After three days of practices for the annual East-West Shrine Game, Michigan State C Brian Allen and Northern Iowa WR Daurice Fountain, both on the East squad, have left two of the strongest impressions on NFL scouts among more than 100 prospects for the 2018 draft gathered here at the all-star game.  An AFC scout told Path to the Draft that although Allen (6-foot-2, 305 pounds) might not be the most talented player participating, his upside for an NFL career is as strong as anyone at the event because of his technique and understanding of leverage as an interior blocker. "Monday was a little shaky just getting the playbook down and getting everyone on the same page," said Allen, the younger brother of New Orleans Saints C Jack Allen. "But we've gotten a lot better. It's all stuff I did at Michigan State, it's just matching the terminology they give us to what I know.". Allen, who was selected the second-team All-Big Ten center last season, estimated that 20 NFL clubs have made contact with him over the last three days.) (1-17-18):   http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000907541/article/shrine-game-day-3-notebook-msus-brian-allen-generating-buzz

Lions met with Michigan State OL Brian Allen after practice. Was pretty evident they'd met before too. Allen looked alright at C today (1-17-18): mobile.twitter.com/JeffRisdon/status/953670767509680128?p=p

Shrine Practice -- Wednesday AM Report (Brian Allen/C/Michigan State: Allen has been steady during all three Shrine practices and could’ve been mentioned after any of them. He’s strong, fundamentally sound and has a great head for the position. Allen consistently opened up the middle of the line, and I was impressed with his ability to quickly get to the second level then take out linebackers.) (1-17-18):  http://www.draftanalyst.com/shrine-practice-wednesday-am-report

USF’s Nichols, Senat draw praise from Shrine coach ("The young man from Northern Iowa, the receiver (Daurice Fountain), the center from Michigan State (Brian Allen), I think (Ohio State QB) J.T. (Barrett) has done an excellent job," said Hayes, the Bengals' tight ends coach the past 15 seasons.") (1-17-18):  http://www.tampabay.com/blogs/bulls/2018/01/17/usfs-nichols-senat-draw-praise-from-shrine-coach/

2018 Shrine Game: East Practice (Monday-Tuesday) (Michigan State center Brian Allen is short-armed and not overly quick with either his hands or feet, but he’s crafty and strong. I liked his older brother, Jack, more as a prospect. Brian did quite well in a tandem block drill, and he pulls out in the run game better than any other interior OL on either roster.) (1-16-17):  https://football.realgm.com/analysis/3027/2018-Shrine-Game-East-Practice-(monday-Tuesday)

Michigan State C Brian Allen is one of my favorite OLinemen at the Shrine Game. Super consistent on the inside. Haven't seen him be overpowered yet. (video inside) (1-16-18):  https://twitter.com/TampaBayTre/status/953282897594773504

2018 East-West Shrine Practice Recap Day 2 (With Video) (C Brian Allen:  Allen made the list again today, and I’m starting to think he could make the list all week, if I wanted to put him on here.  Allen is the savvy, smart, strong center who seems to control everything and everyone who comes his way. He’s handled himself well against more erratic players like Deadrin Senat and he’s handle himself well against more savvy rushers like Parker Cothren. Whoever his assignment has been, Allen has succeed.) (1-16-18):  https://www.pewterreport.com/2018-east-west-shrine-practice-recap-day-2-with-video/

Shrine Game Day 1 Notebook: J.T. Barrett takes command (Top performers -  Some of the standouts at Monday's practices included Michigan State C Brian Allen, Miami CB DeVonta' Delaney, FSU S Trey Marshall, Wisconsin LB Leon Jacobs and Colorado S Afolabi Laguda. Delaney showed impressive speed and instincts reacting to underneath routes, and Laguda made an impressive pass breakup defending against former Buffaloes teammate Bryce Bobo.) (1-15-18):  http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000907142/article/shrine-game-day-1-notebook-jt-barrett-takes-command

2018 East-West Shrine Practice Recap Day 1 (With Video) (C Brian Allen:  Brian Allen was one of the offensive linemen that we spotlighted in our preview of the East-West Shrine event as a possible Bucs target in the later rounds.  On Monday, Allen looked as comfortable as he would have back in East Lansing at Michigan State, where he was a consistent starter and team captain. Allen controlled the interior line well all day. He had a handful of reps that were very solid, and moved himself well ahead of the rest of the pack as the best center in attendance, if you ask us.) (1-15-17):  https://www.pewterreport.com/2018-east-west-shrine-practice-recap-day-1-video/

Kiper: UM's Cole, MSU's Allen among top centers in NFL draft (Kiper rates Cole the No. 5 prospect at center, while Allen is No. 9.) (1-10-18):  http://www.detroitnews.com/story/sports/nfl/2018/01/10/kiper-ums-cole-msus-allen-top-centers-nfl-draft/109340772/

2018 NFL Draft prospect watch: Holiday Bowl (Brian Allen - While not an elite prospect in terms of height, weight or athleticism, Allen was one of the most consistent performers in the country at his position. He allowed no sacks, just two hits and eight hurries in pass protection this year, and his grades in both pass protection and run-blocking ranked in the top 12 nationally. His 85.8 overall grade ranks seventh nationally among all FBS centers. – @PFF_Josh) (12-28-17):  https://www.profootballfocus.com/news/2018-nfl-draft-prospect-watch-holiday-bowl

Michigan State football's Brian Allen, David Dowell named second team All-Big Ten (12-6-27):  https://www.lansingstatejournal.com/story/sports/college/msu/football/2017/12/06/michigan-state-football-big-ten/928976001/

Couch: 5 players who defined Michigan State's program-saving senior class (Brian Allen:  Surrounded by an offensive line still finding its way, a group too green for Big Ten success, Allen has been an anchor at center, playing at an All-American level. He has been noticeably dominant and steady at a position that’s rarely noticed. He’s an intimidating presence. My guess is that’s a calming trait for the pups in the trenches with him.  If MSU had four more Allens, it would have a forceful ground game. He’s never said that. He speaks about the line only as a collective. After MSU’s offensive tackles, sophomore Cole Chewins and redshirt freshman Luke Campbell, were overwhelmed by the speed of Ohio State’s rush ends, he didn’t shake his head or admonish them. He didn’t sugarcoat it, either.   “Just learn from it,” Allen told them. “It wasn’t pretty by anyone on Saturday. I just let them know that you’re going to have bad games. That’s stuff’s going to happen. I’ve been there and struggled with teams like that when I was young. Just learn from it and get better and keep trying to level up.  “You can’t practice for guys like that. You don’t see guys like that all that often. Now they know what it’s like.”) (11-16-17):  https://www.lansingstatejournal.com/story/sports/columnists/graham-couch/2017/11/17/michigan-state-football-program-senior-class-couch-column/874243001/

PFF Draft Watch: Week 6 marquee matchups (Allen vs Hurst - Allen has graded extremely well this season, as he has surrendered just one pressure and has a run-blocking grade of 83.0. His No. 3 overall grade among centers (86.9) will be put to the test this week against one of the best all-around defenders in the country. Hurst’s 89.6 overall grade is still the best in the nation among defensive interiors, and he is coming off his most productive game of the season with two sacks, three hits and two hurries against Purdue in Week 4.) (10-6-17):  https://www.profootballfocus.com/news/pff-draft-watch-week-6-marquee-matchups

2018 NFL Draft Stock - Week 3 (Stock Down - Brian Allen, C, Michigan State:  Sources have told me that Allen is getting very late-round or undrafted free agent grades. They like Allen because he is a tough player who plays with a salty demeanor and is a physical blocker. But he's 6-foot-1, and there are very few centers who can stick in the NFL at that height. Allen can't get movement and struggles with odd fronts. He is a good college player, but has limitations that could prevent him from translating in the NFL. Thus, many team evaluators are projecting him to be an undrafted free agent next spring.) (9-19-17):  http://walterfootball.com/draft2018stock_03.php

2018 Prospect Preview: Brian Allen anchors the Michigan State offensive line (8-18-17):  https://www.profootballfocus.com/news/draft-2018-prospect-preview-brian-allen-anchors-the-michigan-state-offensive-line

LB Leon Jacobs:

Mike Mayock's observations from week of Shrine Game practices (Wisconsin LB Leon Jacobs: He had a really solid week. I think he's an off-the-ball linebacker. I think he's a 3-4 inside backer, or a 4-3 weakside linebacker.) (1-18-18):  http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000907807/article/mike-mayocks-observations-from-week-of-shrine-game-practices

LB Leon Jacobs with a nice hit on Northwestern RB Justin Jackson. Wrong side of the pylon, but he can get to the sideline for a 245-pounder. (1-17-18):  https://twitter.com/ChaseGoodbread/status/953742053267181568

Wisconsin LB Leon Jacobs meeting with Lions after Shrine practice (1-16-18):  https://twitter.com/JeffRisdon/status/953384254087614465

Shrine Practice -- Tuesday PM Report (Leon Jacobs of Wisconsin, who primarily played on the line of scrimmage for the Badgers, has been used in a more traditional linebacker role here at Shrine practices and has looked solid. His footwork scraping laterally and dropping into coverage needs work, but Jacobs has held his ground against tight ends and running backs who come across the field.) (1-16-18):  http://draftanalyst.com/shrine-practice-tuesday-pm-report

2018 Shrine Game: West Practice (Monday-Tuesday) (This is a very athletic group, led by Wisconsin’s Leon Jacobs and Indiana’s Tegray Scales. Jacobs is a ripped athlete with quick eyes and a good burst to the point of attack.) (1-16-18):  https://football.realgm.com/analysis/3028/2018-Shrine-Game-West-Practice-Monday-Tuesday

Shrine Game Day 1 Notebook: J.T. Barrett takes command (Top performers - Some of the standouts at Monday's practices included Michigan State C Brian Allen, Miami CB DeVonta' Delaney, FSU S Trey Marshall, Wisconsin LB Leon Jacobs and Colorado S Afolabi Laguda. Delaney showed impressive speed and instincts reacting to underneath routes, and Laguda made an impressive pass breakup defending against former Buffaloes teammate Bryce Bobo.) (1-15-17):  http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000907142/article/shrine-game-day-1-notebook-jt-barrett-takes-command

2018 NFL Draft prospect watch: Orange Bowl (Jacobs nearly doubled his snaps this season, than he had all in previous three years, and did so with great success. He improved all facets for an edge defending linebacker, pass-rush, coverage and run defense this season, to the tune of 36 QB pressures, 33 defensive stops and a 38.8 passer rating on throws into his coverage. The latter perhaps the most impressive, Jacobs saw only 10 targeted passes this year, but brought down two interceptions and another pass breakup. – @PFF_Cam) (12-29-17):  https://www.profootballfocus.com/news/2018-nfl-draft-prospect-watch-orange-bowl

Cleanup time: No. 5 Wisconsin’s defense wrecks another foe (Wisconsin outside linebacker Leon Jacobs was a one-man wrecking crew against Iowa.  An active linebacking corps looked like it could shut down the Hawkeyes on its own. Jacobs’ heady play in scooping up a fumble after a bad snap for a 21-yard return for a score showed that the defense had smarts to match its physical play.  Jacobs had both knees on the ground as the ball squirted out of a scrum in his direction. Instead of pouncing immediately on the loose ball, Jacobs pushed himself off the ground just enough so he wouldn’t be considered down while taking possession, then ran to the end zone.  ”Incredible,” Ferguson said. ”He’s just a `manimal’ out there, throwing dudes off of him and making plays.”) (11-12-17):  https://www.foxsports.com/college-football/story/cleanup-time-no-5-wisconsin-s-defense-wrecks-another-foe-111217

Wisconsin, Michigan's next opponent, remains unbeaten with 38-14 win vs Iowa (Senior LB Leon Jacobs: four tackles, one sack, two fumble recoveries, one touchdown.) (11-11-17):  http://www.mlive.com/wolverines/index.ssf/2017/11/wisconsin_michigans_next_oppon.html

Leon Jacobs finally has a home at OLB for No. 5 Wisconsin (10-15-17):  https://www.foxsports.com/college-football/story/leon-jacobs-finally-has-a-home-at-olb-for-no-5-wisconsin-101517

S Chucky Williams:

Lions met with S Chucky Williams (1-16-17):  https://twitter.com/TampaBayTre/status/953045643064463366

2018 East-West Shrine Game: Tuesday's West Team Practice Report (There are a couple of safeties on the West squad who practiced well on Tuesday. Louisville's Chucky Williams had a good run fill and was impressive with the way he came downhill to defend the run. Williams came close to an interception later in practice but was a half second late to react. The 6-foot-2, 210-pounder has good size to him. He could use some work in pass coverage for the NFL, but he has a special-teams body and skill set that could present value as he develops his ability to cover while serving as a backup.) (1-16-18):  http://walterfootball.com/eastwest2018practice4.php

TaxSlayer Bowl: Mississippi State vs. Louisville (S Chucky Williams, Louisville: The 6-2, 216-pound Williams is the leader in the secondary with 74 tackles, five broken-up passes and two interceptions.) (12-29-17):  https://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/ncaaf/2017/12/29/taxslayer-bowl-mississippi-state-vs-louisville/986518001/

Here's what the defense looks like when we combine Louisville and Kentucky's players (S: Chucky Williams, Louisville:  Williams typically plays as Louisville’s high safety and does a nice job of keeping the ball in front of him. He’s another leader on the defense and another senior. He’s had a nice year with 68 tackles, two interceptions, four pass breakups and three forced fumbles.) (11-23-17):  https://www.courier-journal.com/story/sports/college/kentucky/2017/11/23/louisville-kentucky-football-all-rivalry-team-defense/885950001/

Louisville football at North Carolina: 3 keys and a prediction (3. Keep creating turnovers - U of L's defense came through in key situations last weekend, with an interception return for a touchdown from Stacy Thomas and two other interceptions from Chucky Williams and TreSean Smith. Those plays, plus some solid pressure on the quarterback, made up for some of the mistakes on the offensive side of the ball. The Cards will be in great shape if they do that again.) (9-8-17):  https://www.courier-journal.com/story/sports/college/louisville/2017/09/08/louisville-cardinals-football-north-carolina-tar-heels-3-keys-prediction/634469001/

Ranking Louisville football's 10 best players in 2017 (3. Chucky Williams, S, Sr.:  Williams seems underrated in the ACC, reliably doubling as a ball hawk and a big hitter in the Cardinals' secondary. He had three interceptions and two fumble recoveries in 2016 and was third on the team in tackles (74), behind only inside linebackers Keith Kelsey and Thomas. It'll be no surprise if Williams, ideally sized at 6-2, 216, begins to earn more buzz this season as NFL prospect.) (8-22-17):  https://www.courier-journal.com/story/sports/college/louisville/2017/08/22/ranking-louisville-footballs-10-best-players-2017-steve-jones/589943001/

CB Davontae Harris:

Detroit Lions - Wisconsin linebacker Leon Jacobs and Illinois State cornerback Davontae Harris (1-16-18):  http://walterfootball.com/eastwest2018interviews4.php

ISU defensive stars featured on numerous All-American teams (1-2-17):  http://www.chicagonow.com/prairie-state-pigskin/2018/01/isu-defensive-stars-featured-on-numerous-all-american-teams/

2018 East-West Shrine Game: Tuesday's West Team Practice Report (Illinois State cornerback Davontae Harris (6-0, 205) has good size to him and is a solid in zone coverage. However, Harris struggles with deep speed. That could be seen from his college tape in the back half of the season and in St. Petersburg. Harris shouldn't go to teams that play a lot of off man coverage. He could be a fit and make a team that plays a lot of zone and maybe some press man technique.) (1-16-18):  http://walterfootball.com/eastwest2018practice4.php

2018 Shrine Game: West Practice (Monday-Tuesday) (Arizona CB Dane Cruikshank is an impressive physical specimen who has picked off passes both days. He does not lack vocal self-confidence. The same is true of Illinois State’s Davontae Harris, a natural ballhawk. Harris reminds me some of Brian Poole from Florida and now the Falcons, though Harris isn’t as powerful. He will be drafted and could play as a slot corner early.) (1-16-18):  https://football.realgm.com/analysis/3028/2018-Shrine-Game-West-Practice-Monday-Tuesday

2018 NFL Draft Stock - Pre-Bowls (Davontae Harris, CB, Illinois State:  Harris (6-0, 190) impressed scouting sources this season and will play at the East-West Shrine in January. The 6-foot, 205-pounder has good size and some movement skills. In 2017, Harris totaled 57 tackles with two interceptions, 14 passes broken up, two sacks and 4.5 tackles for a loss. Harris could rise with a strong week in St. Petersburg.) (12-12-17):  http://walterfootball.com/draft2018stock_15.php

15 non-Power-Five prospects that will be NFL stars (15. Davontae Harris, CB, Illinois State:  Harris is a physical player. He consistently challenges receivers when uncovered in the nickel spot. Harris had four pass breakups against South Dakota State last weekend, giving him 34 in three seasons. If he doesn't test well in the draft process, though, it's possible he could lose this spot to another well-regarded FCS prospect, Southern's Danny Johnson.) (11-16-17):  http://www.nfl.com/photoessays/0ap3000000877938

Moving the Chains with . . . ISU cornerback Davontae Harris (10-24-17):  http://www.chicagonow.com/prairie-state-pigskin/2017/10/moving-the-chains-with-isu-cornerback-davontae-harris/

Resilient Redbirds rebound with impressive triumph (Players of the Game - Senior defensive back Davontae Harris led ISU with 11 tackles (eight solo), an interception and a quarterback hurry.) (10-21-17):  http://www.chicagonow.com/prairie-state-pigskin/2017/10/resilient-redbirds-rebound-with-impressive-triumph/

ISU cornerback drawing NFL interest from 'all 32 teams' (9-28-17):  http://www.chicagonow.com/prairie-state-pigskin/2017/09/isu-cornerback-drawing-nfl-interest-from-all-32-teams/

Interview with a small school hero: Davontae Harris, DB, Illinois State (8-25-17):  https://www.nfldraftdiamonds.com/davontae-harris/

CB Dane Cruikshank:

2018 NFL Draft Stock - East-West Shrine (Dane Cruikshank, CB, Arizona:  The West team did not have a standout group of cornerbacks, but one corner who earned some praise from team scouts is Arizona's Dane Cruikshank. The 6-foot-1, 206-pounder has excellent size for the position, and he also moves pretty well with athleticism. Cruikshank is steady in coverage to run routes and prevent separation. He does have issues with deep speed, and that could be seen early in the West's practices. For the NFL, he could be a sleeper corner to match up against big receivers and should be protected from going against smaller speed receivers.) (1-18-18):  http://walterfootball.com/draft2018stock_20.php

Shrine Practice Winners- Defense (Dane Cruikshank/CB/Arizona: The big cornerback passes the eyeball test at first glance and was even more impressive once the whistle blew to start drills. He was incredibly quick, fluid and polished in all fundamentals of his position. Cruikshank showed outstanding ball skills from the first day of practice and played to his size. The whispers about his draft position in April start in the fourth round or potentially a frame higher, depending how he runs at the combine. I’m hoping he’s a late addition to the Senior Bowl.) (1-18-18):  http://draftanalyst.com/shrine-practice-winners-defense

Shrine Game -- Wednesday Notes (We wrote up Arizona cornerback Dane Cruikshank last night, and I’m told his schedule has been full of interviews over the past few days.  Interviews of note include the New York Jets and Detroit Lions, who had their general managers on hand to speak with Cruikshank.) (1-17-18):  http://draftanalyst.com/shrine-game-wednesday-notes

Shrine Practice -- Wednesday PM Report (Dane Cruikshank/CB/Arizona: Cruikshank was mentioned in our notes section yesterday, and he took it to another level this afternoon. He stood out in drills, displaying the quickest backpedal and hip turn of any defensive back and the most explosive plant and drive to the ball. I’m still a little concerned about his ability to make plays with his back to the ball, but Cruikshank is a tall, athletic, good-looking corner who could be selected in the draft much earlier than anyone is presently predicting.) (1-17-18):  http://draftanalyst.com/shrine-practice-wednesday-pm-report

2018 East-West Shrine Game: Wednesday's West Team Practice Report (Arizona's Dane Cruikshank is another defensive back who has had a good week of practice. He had a few good plays in coverage Wednesday. He came close to a diving interception in the team scrimmage and was getting a lot of praise from teammates for coming close to a fantastic play. Cruikshank had a nice pass break-up in the seven-on-seven portion of the practice as well.) (1-17-18):  http://walterfootball.com/eastwest2018practice6.php

Shrine Practice -- Tuesday PM Report (Cornerback Dane Cruikshank of Arizona has had his moments on the field but has also shown a bit of inconsistency. He’s a long corner who measures over six feet tall, and I’m told he’ll run in the 4.3s during workouts. He made several brilliant plays today but also had a few moments where scouts were left scratching their heads. I’m hearing that he’s pegged for the middle rounds, and if he pulls it together Cruikshank could develop into a starter at the next level.) (1-16-18):  http://draftanalyst.com/shrine-practice-tuesday-pm-report

2018 East-West Shrine Game: Tuesday's West Team Practice Report (The West team does not have a standout group of cornerbacks, but one corner who has earned some praise from team scouts is Arizona's Dane Cruikshank. The 6-foot-1, 206-pounder has excellent size for the position, and he also proves pretty well with athleticism. Cruikshank has been steady in coverage to run routes and prevent separation. In the early portion of the team scrimmage, Cruikshank had an interception on a under thrown pass. He has issues with deep speed, and that could be seen early in practice. For the NFL, he could be a sleeper corner to matchup against big receivers and should be protected from going against smaller speed receivers.) (1-16-17):  http://walterfootball.com/eastwest2018practice4.php

2018 Shrine Game: West Practice (Monday-Tuesday) (Arizona CB Dane Cruikshank is an impressive physical specimen who has picked off passes both days. He does not lack vocal self-confidence.) (1-16-18):  https://football.realgm.com/analysis/3028/2018-Shrine-Game-West-Practice-Monday-Tuesday

Shrine Game Day 2 Notebook: Memphis QB emulates Brett Favre (Arizona CB Dane Cruikshank of the West team made a nice pass breakup on a throw to the sideline Tuesday.) (1-16-17):  http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000907394/article/shrine-game-day-2-notebook-memphis-qb-emulates-brett-favre

Arizona Wildcats rewind: Five takeaways from the UA’s 38-35 loss to Purdue in the Foster Farms Bowl (3. Great Dane:  Senior safety Dane Cruikshank was Arizona’s best defensive player in the Foster Farms Bowl. Cruikshank finished with eight tackles, a sack and three pass breakups. He made plays near the line of scrimmage and in coverage. When Yates shifted Cruikshank from cornerback to “Spur” in training camp, some were skeptical: Why deplete a thin position to supplement a deep one? It turned out to be the right move for all parties. It also showed that when it comes to the secondary, Yates really knows his stuff. He might have even helped turn Cruikshank into a legitimate pro prospect. Cruikshank will participate in the upcoming East-West Shrine game, along with guard Jacob Alsadek. Whether they get drafted is a big deal, not only for them but for the UA program. Arizona hasn’t had a ton of players drafted in recent years – none in 2013, ’15 or ’17; and no one picked higher than the fourth round since Nick Foles went in Round 3 in 2012. Why does this matter? It hurts recruiting. It’s hard to sell players on the idea that they’ll develop into pros at Arizona if there’s little recent evidence to support that contention.) (12-30-17):  http://tucson.com/sports/arizonawildcats/football/arizona-wildcats-rewind-five-takeaways-from-the-ua-s-/article_ee053260-edac-11e7-8cea-4343562e595e.html

Scouting the Foster Farms Bowl: Arizona vs. Purdue (Arizona’s lone potential draftee is cornerback Dane Cruikshank, who received some sixth-round grades from scouts in the preseason. At 6-foot-2 and 208 pounds with below-average speed and quickness, Cruikshank may fit better at the safety position in the NFL than cornerback, where he can show off his hard-hitting skills without having to play often in man coverage or with his back to the ball. He managed just two pass defenses on the season.) (12-22-17):  http://draftanalyst.com/scouting-foster-farms-bowl-arizona-vs-purdue

Notes, quotes and stats from the Arizona Wildcats’ 49-35 loss to USC (Senior safety Dane Cruikshank tied his career high with 10 tackles. He also recorded his second interception.) (11-4-17):  http://tucson.com/sports/arizonawildcats/football/notes-quotes-and-stats-from-the-arizona-wildcats--/article_450d7960-c20f-11e7-bd76-db04fe6e4ddc.html

Former cornerback Dane Cruikshank has become Wildcats’ Spur of the moment (10-20-17):  http://tucson.com/former-cornerback-dane-cruikshank-has-become-wildcats-spur-of-the/article_6b6339cc-b5eb-11e7-be8e-d76a0c63baf7.html

Scouting the Pac-12: Arizona (Cruikshank offers terrific size measuring 6-foot-2 and 208 pounds. Physical, he’s a hard-hitting defensive back who jars opponents and knocks the ball loose. He’s fluid in transition and works to make plays but lacks overall speed and quickness and struggles when his back is to the ball.  I think he could land a roster spot at the next level -- not at cornerback but as a zone safety.) (8-28-17):  http://draftanalyst.com/scouting-pac-12-arizona

TE Ethan Wolf:

USF’s Nichols, Senat draw praise from Shrine coach ("The kid from Tennessee (TE Ethan Wolf) has done some good things.") (1-17-18):  http://www.tampabay.com/blogs/bulls/2018/01/17/usfs-nichols-senat-draw-praise-from-shrine-coach/

QB J.T. Barrett throws a pass to TE Ethan Wolf (1-16-18):  https://twitter.com/TampaBayTre/status/953301679868391424

Another game to play (1-13-18):  https://www.dailystandard.com/archive/2018-01-13/stories/34039/another-game-to-play

UT Vols' Ethan Wolf, Eli Wolf prepare for last game together (11-23-17):  https://www.knoxnews.com/story/sports/college/university-of-tennessee/football/2017/11/23/ut-vols-ethan-wolf-eli-wolf-tennessee-volunteers-vanderbilt-minster-ohio-senior-day-brady-hoke/883259001/

Ethan Wolf’s Quiet, Strong Career (10-25-17):  http://vflinsider.com/ethan-wolf-quiet-strong-career/

UT QBs, Receivers, Coaches Struggling So Far (Senior tight end Ethan Wolf has 10 catches (third on team) for 90 yards (fourth) with one touchdown catch.) (10-6-17):  https://www.memphisdailynews.com/news/2017/oct/6/ut-qbs-receivers-coaches-struggling-so-far/

Vols Film Study: Ethan Wolf Post/Wheel touchdown (9-19-17):  http://www.wbir.com/article/sports/vols-film-study-ethan-wolf-postwheel-touchdown/51-476870334

SEC analyst defends Tennessee tight end Ethan Wolf after scout’s criticism (8-31-17):  http://gridironnow.com/sec-analyst-defends-tennessee-tight-end-ethan-wolf-scout-criticism/


Saturday, January 13, 2018

RB Draft Prospects

RB Prospects (Nick ChubbDerrius Guice, Bryce Love):

RB Nick Chubb:

Scouting Reports:

Walterfootball:  http://walterfootball.com/scoutingreport2018nchubb.php

2018 Prospect Profile: Nick Chubb looks to regain pre-injury form in 2017:   https://www.profootballfocus.com/news/draft-2018-prospect-profile-nick-chubb-looks-to-regain-pre-injury-form-in-2017

Articles:

Roquan Smith, other prospects whose draft stock changed in CFP championship game (Stock Down - Nick Chubb, RB:  Chubb's not the type of runner who typically thrives against Alabama. Nick Saban's two-gap defense -- with ultra-talented linemen -- makes it nearly impossible to move the ball up the middle, where Chubb has made a living for four years at Georgia. His stock won't take a huge hit, but it's possible that many view Sony Michel as the Georgia back with more potential in today's NFL. ) (1-10-18):  https://www.cbssports.com/nfl/draft/news/roquan-smith-other-prospects-whose-draft-stock-changed-in-cfp-championship-game/

Alabama vs. Georgia: Nick Chubb, Sony Michel, Jalen Hurts headline title game stars (Running back Nick Chubb: It's hard to say Chubb is underrated at this point, but he could be slightly undervalued even though he's been a four-year staple of this offense. Chubb has three 1,000-yard rushing seasons and would have had a fourth if he hadn't missed half of the 2015 season due to a knee injury. If college football's running back position hadn't been so deep and talented over the past few years, Chubb would probably be getting more attention.) (1-9-18):  https://www.cbssports.com/college-football/news/alabama-vs-georgia-nick-chubb-sony-michel-jalen-hurts-headline-title-game-stars/

What we learned from scouting National Championship Game (4. I wished Georgia could have kept RB Sony Michel going because he had the hot hand early. He showed off his agility with a long run in the first half against Alabama.  I like Michel a little bit better than Bulldogs RB Nick Chubb as a prospect. Michel can get to the edge a little bit better, and tonight reinforced that against a fast defense. Michel was able to get outside. Chubb's more of a banger inside.) (1-9-18):  http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000904478/article/what-we-learned-from-scouting-national-championship-game

Top-10 2018 draft prospects playing on Monday night (7. Nick Chubb, RB, Georgia. Concerns over a knee injury suffered two years ago have subsided, and Chubb will enter the offseason as one of the class’s most complete backs. He and Sony Michel have split the work this season, and Chubb has established an edge over his teammate in vision and lateral quickness, and as a receiver. The comp I got for Chubb? Mark Ingram.) (1-8-18):  https://www.si.com/nfl/2018/01/08/georgia-alabama-nfl-draft-national-title-championship-game-top-prospects-minkah-fitzpatrick-roquan

Top 17 future NFL stars to watch in national championship game (9. Nick Chubb, RB, Georgia:  Chubb's power came in handy against Oklahoma, as he carried the ball 14 times for 145 yards and two scores. When he hits the open field, it's not easy to catch him. While he's not as speedy and agile as teammate Sony Michel, Chubb will pound the ball and make defenses pay for not maintaining gap discipline. During the last game between Alabama and Georgia (October 2015), Chubb had 146 yards and a score on 20 carries against the Tide. Michel had 54 yards in that contest, and both need to excel again if they want to beat Nick Saban's group.) (1-4-18):   http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000902788/article/top-17-future-nfl-stars-to-watch-in-national-championship-game

Best pro fits for 2018 NFL draft prospects in the College Football Playoff final (Nick Chubb, RB:   It’s been an incredible career for Chubb, who burst onto the scene in 2014, filling in for an injured Todd Gurley and even outperforming the superstar in some aspects. Chubb has dealt with injuries throughout his four years at Georgia, but this was his best season since that breakout freshman campaign, as he averaged a career-high 3.9 yards after contact per rush and forced 56 missed tackles on only 205 rushes. He’s an efficient runner who can maximize what the run-blocking gives him while tacking on a little extra with his speed and power. The Redskins, Seahawks, and Buccaneers could also use that efficiency in their respective run games, and while Chubb is unlikely to be a first-round pick, he’d make a fine Day 2 addition to any of those teams.) (1-3-18):   https://www.profootballfocus.com/news/draft-best-pro-fits-for-2018-nfl-draft-prospects-in-the-college-football-playoff-final

Ask 5: Which RB in national title game will have best NFL career? (Here's the question I posed to five NFL personnel executives this week: Which running back from this game will have the best pro career? Here are their answers.  Executive 1: Georgia RB Nick Chubb -  "A couple years from now, we might say (Najee Harris) from Alabama or (D'Andre Swift) from Georgia, but for the draft-eligible guys -- it's Chubb. He's so steady. He has better play speed than you initially give him credit for and he rarely goes down on first contact. He's built to withstand the rigors of the NFL."  Executive 2: Chubb - "It is so close in talent between all of these backs, it will probably come down to team/scheme fit. I have very similar grades on Harris, Chubb and Michel. The Sony Michel bandwagon is picking up steam around the league, but Chubb would be my choice. I just love his style and the way he's wired."  Executive 3: Chubb - "This is a really tough call. I think Chubb's talent and running style will translate the best to the next level. My gut feeling says that (D'Andre) Swift will end up being the best of the bunch in time. He's so explosive, but he still has a lot to learn.") (1-3-18):   http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000902315/article/ask-5-which-rb-in-national-title-game-will-have-best-nfl-career

Top 10 NFL Draft prospects in College Football Playoff (Nick Chubb and Sony Michel - The Georgia backfield duo has been both healthy and highly productive this season, things with which both Chubb and Michel have struggled over their college careers. Chubb offers great physicality, patience and power as an interior runner who works best after contact and finishes inside runs with slow-building speed.  Michel, on the other hand, boasts lightening-fast acceleration and quickness, planting and exploding upfield to finish big plays with narrow running lanes. While smaller and more reliant on speed, Michel offers enough power and physicality to work as a more complete running back in the NFL level, more than he does now at Georgia.) (1-1-18):  http://www.sportingnews.com/nfl/list/nfl-draft-prospects-college-football-playoff-clemson-oklahoma-georgia-alabama/1vy9nwy052uw61fchjhw9156mm/slide/1

2018 NFL Draft: 24 prospects to watch in the College Football Playoff semifinals (RB Nick Chubb: Chubb probably would've gone in the second or third round of the 2017 draft, and he solidified his stock with another strong campaign with the Bulldogs. He averaged 6.2 yards per carry with 13 rushing scores. Chubb isn't a home-run hitter but his experience shows in his vision and cutting off blocks to efficiently move downfield.) (1-1-18):   https://www.cbssports.com/nfl/draft/news/2018-nfl-draft-24-prospects-to-watch-in-the-college-football-playoff-semifinals/

2018 NFL Draft prospect watch: CFP Semifinal Rose Bowl (Quarterback Jake Fromm has had a strong freshman season for the Bulldogs, but the running back duo of Nick Chubb and Sony Michel is the lifeblood of the Georgia offense. Chubb has forced 52 missed tackles on the ground this season, helping him rank fifth in elusiveness among draft-eligible backs. Michel is not far behind in the category at eighth, as he has forced 32 missed tackles on just 132 rushes. Michel has also been excellent in pass protection throughout his career, giving up just one sack and no quarterback hits on 150 total pass-blocking snaps.) (12-31-17):   https://www.profootballfocus.com/news/2018-nfl-draft-prospect-watch-cfp-semifinal-rose-bowl

Top 25 future NFL stars to watch in New Year's Day bowl games (20. Nick Chubb, RB, Georgia: Game: Rose Bowl vs. Oklahoma, It seems like many running backs are being compared to Frank Gore nowadays, as analysts try to give Gore his rightful due for a stellar career. Chubb really does remind me of Gore, though, in the way he churns through traffic using his thick legs and torso. He's also capable of lowering his pads into contact, reducing his strike zone and pushing through the pile to create yardage. The Sooners might not think he's the fastest back, but his lateral foot quickness can open a lane that he can accelerate through quickly to break off runs of 15-20 yards before they know it.) (12-29-17):  http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000899828/article/top-25-future-nfl-stars-to-watch-in-new-years-day-bowl-games

The Rundown on Rushers (Nick Chubb, Georgia: Chubb isn't a burner, but his contact power and balance is outstanding. Defenders bounce off of him repeatedly in the games I studied. He reminds me of Jonathan Stewart, although Chubb doesn't have quite the same top speed that Stewart possesses.) (12-15-17):  http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000893205/article/browns-could-be-juggernaut-5-bowls-that-will-shape-nfl-draft

Tuesday Draft Notes -- 13.0 (I was surprised to hear several area scouts grade Georgia running back Sony Michel ahead of his teammate Nick Chubb. They believe Michel’s game projects better to the next level compared to Chubb’s and that both will end up in the draft’s second round. At this point it’s not an opinion I share, as I think highly of Chubb and believe he will be a first-round selection.) (12-6-17):  http://draftanalyst.com/tuesday-draft-notes-130

Georgia LB Smith looks impressive in SEC title game (Though Chubb was overshadowed slightly by Swift's big run and Smith's terrific performance, he lived up to the pregame hype, passing former Kevin Faulk (LSU) and Darren McFadden to rank second only to the legendary Herschel Walker on the SEC's career rushing list, gaining 77 yards on 13 carries to give him 4,591 yards with the possibility of two more games remaining.) (12-2-17):  http://nfldraftscout.com/members/news/cfb_column.php?story_id=183921

Top 17 future NFL stars playing on CFB Championship Weekend (16. Nick Chubb, RB, Georgia - Game: SEC championship vs. Auburn, Saturday, 4 p.m. ET, CBS; 2017 stats: 178 carries for 1,098 yards (6.2 average), 13 TDs.:  Chubb will pound and gash opposing defenses with power and a burst once he's in the open field. He reminds me of Frank Gore with his build and ability to wear down defenses.)(11-30-17):   http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000885496/article/top-17-future-nfl-stars-playing-on-cfb-championship-weekend

Week 12 Risers and Sliders (Risers - Nick Chubb/RB/Georgia: The Kentucky contest was a nice rebound game for Chubb, who was held to 27 rushing yards against Auburn one week ago. The Wildcats boast one of the better rushing defenses in the SEC and rank just below Auburn in yards allowed per game (121.9). Chubb shredded the Wildcats for 151 yards on 15 carries with two TDs. The Georgia ball carrier is often lost in the shuffle, as much of the talk focuses on Saquon Barkley of Penn State while his own teammate Sony Michel steals a bit of thunder. Make no doubt about it: if Chubb checks out medically, he’s worthy of being selected in the late portion of Round 1 and projects as a feature runner for the next level.) (11-20-17):  http://draftanalyst.com/week-12-risers-sliders

Chubb boosting stock; Scout not sold on Mayfield as NFL starter (The scoop: Over the past couple of weeks, three NFL evaluators have told me that they see a much better version of Georgia RB Nick Chubb than they saw last season, when he was making his return from a severe knee injury. All three believe he will be drafted higher in 2018 than if he had entered the 2017 draft.  The skinny: I might completely throw away Chubb's 2016 season when I write up his 2018 NFL Draft profile because that timid, sluggish player we saw a year ago is gone.  Throughout 2016, Chubb appeared to be hampered both physically and mentally by the gruesome leg injury that ended his 2015 season. He ran for a very respectable 1,130 yards and 8 TDs in 2016, but Chubb opted to come back to school for the 2017 season to try to improve his draft stock, and he has done just that.  He's much more explosive as an interior and outside rusher. He also looks much lighter on his feet while eluding tackle attempts. Chubb already has as many TD runs as he had in 2016, and he's averaging nearly 2 yards per carry more than he did last season. It's worth noting that Georgia has been able to limit Chubb to 16 or fewer carries in every game so far this season.(10-12-17):  http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000860319/article/chubb-boosting-stock-scout-not-sold-on-mayfield-as-nfl-starter

Grading the Dawgs win over Vandy (Running Backs: A+:  This game was essentially all about the Dawgs’ ground game. On the first drive alone, Nick Chubb gained 69 rushing yards, including a 33-yard score. The senior from Cedartown didn’t stop there, as he finished with 138 yards on 16 carries and two touchdowns.) (10-8-17):   http://www.11alive.com/article/sports/grading-the-dawgs-win-over-vandy/481744713

After knee injury, Georgia RB Nick Chubb has NFL back in sight (9-16-17):  http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000839736/article/after-knee-injury-georgia-rb-nick-chubb-has-nfl-back-in-sight

Nick Chubb's breakout game will wait as Bulldogs top ND (9-9-17):  http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000841265/article/nick-chubbs-breakout-game-will-wait-as-bulldogs-top-nd

Drew Lock on rise; 2 RBs who could follow Kareem Hunt's path (Early Projection, Comp for Nick Chubb - Chubb had a productive effort against Appalachian State in Week 1, racking up 96 rushing yards and two scores. After studying that game on tape, I came away impressed with Chubb's power and balance. He's at his best working between the tackles and grinding out tough yards. He doesn't quite have the burst or top speed he possessed as a younger player, but he did flash some elusiveness in space. He reminds me a little bit of the Bears' Jordan Howard. It might not always be flashy, but he gets the job done.  There's plenty of time for him to showcase his ability this fall, including a big game Saturday against Notre Dame, but I think he's likely to be a middle-round pick in the spring, assuming his knee checks out medically. -- Daniel Jeremiah) (9-8-17):  http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000840145/article/drew-lock-on-rise-2-rbs-who-could-follow-kareem-hunts-path?campaign=tw-cf-sf112582349-sf112582349&sf112582349=1

Five senior prospects who will be NFL starters in Week 1 2018 (Nick Chubb, RB, Georgia:  The Bulldogs have two very talented backs in Chubb and Sony Michel, and both might end up starting in the NFL. If Chubb can stay healthy, he'll be considered a feature back right out of the chute because of his combination of vision, power and quickness.) (9-7-17):  http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000839659/article/five-senior-prospects-who-will-be-nfl-starters-in-week-1-2018

2018 NFL Draft Watch: FBS Running Back Overview (Keep an eye on Georgia’s Nick Chubb who wasn’t completely himself last season as he came off injury, forcing a missed tackle every 5.7 carries compared to one every 3.6 carries in 2014 and 2015. A return to form will have him back in the first-round mix as an every-down option.) (8-10-17):   https://www.profootballfocus.com/news/draft-2018-nfl-draft-watch-fbs-running-back-overview

Top 5 FBS players, per position, entering the 2017 season: Offense (Nick Chubb, Georgia - The Good: Maximizes what the run blocking gives him, picks up yards through contact, and finished third in the nation with an elusive rating of 113.3 as a true freshman in 2014.  Room to Improve: Production has decreased as he forced a missed tackle once every 3.6 carries in 2014 and 2015, but only one every 5.7 carries in 2016. Can he put together an injury-free, dominant 2017?) (8-7-17):   https://www.profootballfocus.com/news/draft-top-5-fbs-players-per-position-entering-the-2017-season-offense

What we learned: Antonio Callaway likened to Julio Jones (2. Chubb eyeing top-10 status. Georgia coach Kirby Smart said improved draft status was among RB Nick Chubb's motivations for returning to UGA for his senior year, and naturally, Chubb is aiming high.  "(Leonard) Fournette and (Christian) McCaffrey went top 10. That's just amazing to me, knowing that if I do have a great season, or any other running back has a great season, we can get up there in the top 10," Chubb told SEC Network.  Chubb's name hasn't buzzed in the offseason as one of the nation's top backs, as it has with Penn State's Saquon Barkley and LSU's Derrius Guice, but Chubb sees the spotlight on them as a place he's already visited.  "I've been in that position where I was considered one of the top backs, and it's hard to stay consistent," he said.) (7-11-17):  http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000819136/article/what-we-learned-antonio-callaway-likened-to-julio-jones

RB Derrius Guice:

Scouting Reports:

Walterfootball:  http://walterfootball.com/scoutingreport2018dguice.php

Articles:

2018 NFL Draft Prospect Rankings: Da'Ron Payne dominant in College Football Playoff (11. Derrius Guice, RB, LSU:  According to Pro Football Focus, Guice forced seven missed tackles against Notre Dame in the Citrus Bowl. Clockwork for him. On the season, Guice had four games with at least five forced missed tackles. One can reasonably argue that Guice is more impressive than Barkley between the tackles, and he's probably more powerful through tackles. He just lacks elite long speed.) (1-9-18):  https://www.cbssports.com/nfl/draft/news/2018-nfl-draft-prospect-rankings-daron-payne-dominant-in-college-football-playoff/

Derrius Guice shifts focus to NFL Draft decision with bowl game complete (Guice had 21 carries for 98 yards and three receptions for 24 yards and two touchdowns against the Fighting Irish.)  (1-1-18):   http://www.nola.com/lsu/index.ssf/2018/01/derrius_guice_shifts_focus_to.html

Citrus Bowl: 10-win season on the line for Notre Dame, LSU (Derrius Guice, RB, LSU: Guice averaged nearly eight yards per carry during his first two seasons in college. He has been banged up throughout the year and played behind a youthful offensive line, so that production dropped off a bit, but he’s still one of the most talented backs in the country. Guice enters the Citrus Bowl with 1,153 yards and 11 touchdowns on 216 carries — a 5.3-yard average. He’s closing in on 3,000 rushing yards for his career despite backing up Leonard Fournette in 2015 and 2016. This could be his final game in an LSU uniform, too.) (12-30-27):   https://sports.yahoo.com/citrus-bowl-lsu-notre-dame-can-reach-10-wins-204011047.html

2018 NFL Draft prospect watch: Citrus Bowl (Like Notre Dame, LSU has its own stud running back with the luxury of being able to run behind a top-end offensive line. Derrius Guice didn’t play quite at the same level this year as he did in 2016, but he still forced 35 missed tackles on 2016 carries. For his career, 1,636 of his 2,983 rushing yards have come after initial contact.) (12-30-17):  https://www.profootballfocus.com/news/2018-nfl-draft-prospect-watch-citrus-bowl

Top 25 future NFL stars to watch in New Year's Day bowl games (17. Derrius Guice, RB, LSU: Game: Citrus Bowl vs. Notre Dame, Guice struggled with an injury early this season, but over the past five games of the year, he looked like the back that ran for nearly 1,400 yards in 2016. He ran all over Ole Miss for 276 yards in October, then put up three touchdowns two weeks later against Arkansas. The Irish defense must swarm him near the line of scrimmage to keep him bottled up. Guice's strong, compact build and quick feet make him difficult to stop one-on-one, especially when he builds a head of steam.) (12-29-17):  http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000899828/article/top-25-future-nfl-stars-to-watch-in-new-years-day-bowl-games

NFL Draft: Prospects to watch in each college football bowl game (Derrius Guice, RB, LSU (JR):  Guice has elite body control as he maintains his balance and speed through contact and cutting. He has an impeccable ability of creating his own space and planting his foot in the ground and exploding upfield.) (12-26-17):   http://www.sportingnews.com/nfl/news/nfl-draft-prospects-college-football-bowl-games-grades-analysis/efidru6bmary13kqi5ju6f37m

2018 NFL Draft Prospect Rankings: Saquon Barkley, Derrius Guice, Bryce Love headline tremendous RB class (12. Derrius Guice, RB, LSU:  Guice isn't Barkley, but it's close. He runs with insane suddenness and end-of-run power. His vision is outstanding too. I'm pumped for LSU's bowl game against Notre Dame on Jan. 1. Will be a good test for Guice and the Tigers offensive line.) (12-26-17):  https://www.cbssports.com/nfl/draft/news/2018-nfl-draft-prospect-rankings-saquon-barkley-derrius-guice-bryce-love-headline-tremendous-rb-class/

LSU running back Derrius Guice will return to practice next week, Ed Orgeron says (12-20-17):  http://www.nola.com/lsu/index.ssf/2017/12/derrius_guice_nursing_injury.html

The Rundown on Rushers (Derrius Guice, LSU: Guice is a fun player to study on tape. He reminds me of a young Frank Gore. He has a nice mix of quickness, elusiveness and strength.) (12-15-17):  http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000893205/article/browns-could-be-juggernaut-5-bowls-that-will-shape-nfl-draft

Guice comments on knee injury and draft (12-5-17):  http://www.wwltv.com/sports/ncaa/lsu/lsus-derrius-guices-nfl-draft-decision-will-happen-after-citrus-bowl/496989386

You can't draft him yet, but LSU's Derrius Guice may be the best RB prospect in the country (11-25-17):  http://draftwire.usatoday.com/2016/11/25/you-cant-draft-him-yet-but-lsus-derrius-guice-may-be-the-best-rb-prospect-in-the-country/

Sources Tell Us: Buzz building again for LSU RB Derrius Guice (The scoop: LSU's Derrius Guice had become the forgotten man at running back in the first half of the season when so much attention was focused on the outstanding play of Penn State's Saquon Barkley. However, Barkley cooled off just as Guice started to heat up over the past few weeks. Scouts haven't cooled on Guice's NFL potential at all despite his quiet first half of the season, and one scout believes Guice is about to "get 'em talking again" with his next two games (at Tennessee, vs. Texas A&M).  The skinny: I struggled this summer when deciding which running back to rank No. 1 at the position between Barkley and Guice. Both players have great size and are exceptionally talented, so I went back and forth until ultimately settling on Guice. There's no doubt the pendulum swung in the other direction with Barkley's impressive start, but Guice is doing a good job of reminding us about what he can do.  It appears that Penn State head coach James Franklin is limiting the wear and tear on Barkley down the stretch (averaging 16 touches in the past two games), but Barkley's production has been very poor by the star RB's standards in the past 3 weeks (averaging 2.9 yards per carry).  Guice, on the other hand, appears to be healthy again after dealing with a nagging left leg injury earlier in the season. He hung 276 rushing yards on Ole Miss, 147 on Arkansas and is expected to load up the stat sheet against both Tennessee and Texas A&M.  The Barkley vs. Guice debate could be more interesting than some might expect if both decide to enter the draft after the season.(11-16-17):  http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000877729/article/sources-tell-us-buzz-building-anew-for-lsu-rb-derrius-guice

2018 NFL Draft prospects to watch in Week 10 (The Tigers offense is paced by the play of RB Derrius Guice, who had his best game of the season in LSU’s last game against Ole Miss. Guice ripped off 276 yards, 130 of those coming after contact and forced three missed tackles on his 22 carries. He has now forced multiple missed tackles in six of his seven games this season.) (11-8-17):  https://www.profootballfocus.com/news/2018-nfl-draft-prospects-to-watch-in-week-10

2018 NFL Draft Stock - Week 8 (Stock Up - Derrius Guice, RB, LSU:  Guice has been hobbled by a knee injury this season, but like Leonard Fournette a year ago, Guice used the game against Ole Miss to break out with massive performance. Guice has been growing healthier lately and was able to practice fully before playing the Rebels. The better health was evident as Guice dominated Ole Miss running for 276 yards 22 carries with a touchdown. Aside from a few long runs, everytime Guice touched the ball, it seemed like he was almost getting 10 yards out of the carry. He saw lanes open on counter runs and cut downhill to rip the Rebels' defense. He looked faster, more decisive, and ran with more confidence than he had all season. This tape definitely will help Guice's draft grade, and if he runs like this down the stretch, his stock will really rise.) (10-24-17):  http://walterfootball.com/draft2018stock_08.php

Week 8 Risers and Sliders (Risers - Derrius Guice/RB/LSU: It was almost unfair -- Ole Miss has one of the worst run defenses in the country and LSU took advantage, piling up 393 yards on the ground. Despite how poor the Rebels rushing defense may be, a stat line of 276 yards on 22 carries (12.5 yard average) will raise any player's profile among scouts. Guice does not have the same skill set as Leonard Fournette but is still a legitimate feature back for the next level.) (10-23-17):   http://draftanalyst.com/week-8-risers-sliders

2018 NFL Draft Stock - Week 6 (Stock Down - Derrius Guice, RB, LSU:  Guice missed action with a leg injury lately, but he returned to the field versus the Gators. Guice was held in check by Florida, totaling 50 yards on 17 carries, and it is clear that he isn't the same runner that he was last year. Guice doesn't have the same speed and burst to hit the hole. With the lack of speed, he also isn't as violent and physical of a runner. With a lot of running backs having breakout seasons, Guice's draft stock could dive if he is unable to start producing some big games. Entering the season, there was the possibility of Guice being a late first-round pick, but right now, he looks like he might be fortunate to go in the second round of the 2018 NFL Draft.) (10-10-17):  http://walterfootball.com/draft2018stock_06.php

2018 NFL Draft Watch: Weekend Overview, Week 1 (LSU’s Derrius Guice is competing with Barkley for top prospect honors, but the numbers don’t look as gaudy as he ran for 122 yards on 27 carries. He forced four missed tackles and notched a long run of 13 yards.) (9-4-17):  https://www.profootballfocus.com/news/draft-2018-nfl-draft-watch-weekend-overview-week-1

Seven believable things amid offseason hype for NFL prospects (2. Saquon Barkley and Derrius Guice are absolutely as good as advertised. Barkley (Penn State) and Guice (LSU) were entertaining runners as freshmen, but both players took it to that "uh-oh" level as sophomores with eye-opening yardage and touchdown numbers. People will start nit-picking both players this year as the hype surrounding them picked up tremendous steam after their 2016 seasons. After watching the tape on both runners, I'm confident that Guice and Barkley are as talented as any runner taken in the 2017 draft.) (8-23-17):   http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000818460/article/seven-believable-things-amid-offseason-hype-for-nfl-prospects

CFBTop25: No. 5, Derrius Guice, RB, LSU (8-21-17):   http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000832856/article/cfbtop25-no-5-derrius-guice-rb-lsu

Scouting the SEC: LSU (Derrius Guice is the next top running back from the LSU program and a prospect with a lot of next-level potential.  A powerful grinder between the tackles, Guice is rarely brought down by the first defender and battles for extra yardage. He’s explosive, has a burst through the hole and falls forward when tackled. Guice is also a one-speed back who cannot create yardage.  The one-dimensionality of his game will hurt his draft stock.)(8-11-17):  http://draftanalyst.com/scouting-sec-lsu

2018 NFL Draft Watch: FBS Running Back Overview (Let the debate begin as Penn State’s Saquon Barkley and LSU’s Derrius Guice will both likely vie to be the top running back off the board next spring. Both players are big-play threats as Barkley led the nation with an elusive rating of 126.7 in 2015 while Guice stepped in last season and averaged 7.6 yards/carry with 59.5 percent of his yards coming on explosive (15-plus-yard) runs, third-best in the nation.) (8-10-17):   https://www.profootballfocus.com/news/draft-2018-nfl-draft-watch-fbs-running-back-overview

Top 5 FBS players, per position, entering the 2017 season: Offense (Derrius Guice, LSU:  The Good: 12.9 percent of carries went for 15-plus yards, best among draft-eligible running backs and 32.8 percent of carries went for either a first down or a touchdown, sixth best in the class.  Room to Improve: Has only 19 targets in his two years, so there’s more to see from him in the pass game. Pass blocking efficiency of 94.3 ranked 65th in the draft class.) (8-7-17):   https://www.profootballfocus.com/news/draft-top-5-fbs-players-per-position-entering-the-2017-season-offense

2018 Prospect Preview: LSU RB Derrius Guice can hit the long ball (7-26-17):  https://www.profootballfocus.com/news/draft-2018-prospect-preview-lsu-rb-derrius-guice-can-hit-the-long-ball

RB Bryce Love:

Articles:

2018 NFL Draft Prospect Rankings: Da'Ron Payne dominant in College Football Playoff (19. Bryce Love, RB, Stanford:  Love looked to be somewhat close to 100 percent in Stanford's bowl game, as he looked almost as springy and light-footed as we saw him earlier in the season. Every time I watch him I think "Chris Johnson.") (1-9-18): https://www.cbssports.com/nfl/draft/news/2018-nfl-draft-prospect-rankings-daron-payne-dominant-in-college-football-playoff/

Bryce Love fights though more injuries in 145-yard bowl performance (12-29-17):   http://draftwire.usatoday.com/2017/12/29/bryce-love-fights-though-more-injuries-in-145-yard-bowl-performance/

Scouting the Alamo Bowl: Stanford vs. TCU (Stanford RB Bryce Love is by far the top prospect on the field. The Doak Walker Award winner, Pac-12 Offensive Player of the Year and Heisman Trophy runner-up is entering the game with 1,973 rushing yards and 17 touchdowns on 237 attempts. Listed at 5-foot-10 and 196 pounds, the junior is a little slight in his frame. Love plays with nice toughness paired with speed, good field vision and a patience to his running style not often seen in young backs. His size could lower his stock as well as his inexperience catching the ball out of the backfield, which is becoming more of a necessity in the NFL. He’s been nursing an ankle injury since mid-October, but expect Love to play through it and put on a show against the Horned Frogs. As we reported on October 25, many expect Love to leave Stanford after this season.) (12-28-17):   http://draftanalyst.com/scouting-alamo-bowl-stanford-vs-tcu

2018 NFL Draft prospect watch: Valero Alamo Bowl (Our Steve Palazzolo had Bryce Love as his breakout RB candidate before the season and Love exceeded Steve’s prediction by making it all the way to the Heisman Trophy ceremony. Love’s yardage and touchdown numbers are well-known but two PFF signature stats that really capture Love’s impact on the game are his elusive rating and breakaway percentage.  His quickness and agility allowed him to force 70 missed tackles as a rusher this season and his elusive rating of 155.1 ranks No. 1 among all draft-eligible running backs. The deadly part of Love’s game is that he turns missed tackles into big plays with his speed as 67.5 percent of rushing yardage occurred on big plays of 15 yards or more. – @PFF_Jordan) (12-27-17):  https://www.profootballfocus.com/news/2018-nfl-draft-prospect-watch-valero-alamo-bowl

Top 25 future NFL stars to watch in Dec. 26-30 bowl games (15. Bryce Love, RB, Stanford - Game: Alamo Bowl vs. TCU, Dec. 28, Love does not have the build of a workhorse back, which won't help his grade with NFL teams, but if he can power through tackles from TCU defenders in the Alamo Bowl, pro clubs will take notice. Love is capable of knifing through creases inside and works hard to pick up every yard he can. Of course, he's well-known for his ability to explode into open spaces for signature 50-yard jaunts.) (12-26-17):   http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000898733/article/top-25-future-nfl-stars-to-watch-in-dec-2630-bowl-games

NFL Draft: Prospects to watch in each college football bowl game (Bryce Love, RB, Stanford (JR):  Love plays with good patience and vision, bursting through holes after allowing them to develop. He has good flexibility in his hips and ankles, allowing him to make hard, fluid cuts.) (12-26-17):   http://www.sportingnews.com/nfl/news/nfl-draft-prospects-college-football-bowl-games-grades-analysis/efidru6bmary13kqi5ju6f37m

The Rundown on Rushers (Bryce Love, Stanford: Love lacks ideal size, but he has outstanding top speed and surprising power. He fought through a high ankle sprain this fall, displaying both his competitiveness and toughness.) (12-15-17):  http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000893205/article/browns-could-be-juggernaut-5-bowls-that-will-shape-nfl-draft

Why Bryce Love should win the Heisman Trophy but won't (12-5-17):   http://ftw.usatoday.com/2017/12/why-bryce-love-should-win-the-heisman-trophy-but-wont

2018 NFL Draft prospects to watch in conference championships (Stanford RB Bryce Love continues to be one of the premier big-play threats in all of college football as 67.5 percent of his yardage on the year has come on breakaway runs of 15 or more yards which leads the nation. Love has forced 69 missed tackles as a runner this season and his elusive rating of 152.9 leads all FBS running backs. Love is averaging 4.74 yards after contact per attempt) (12-1-17):  https://www.profootballfocus.com/news/2018-nfl-draft-prospects-to-watch-in-conference-championships

Top 17 future NFL stars playing on CFB Championship Weekend (10. Bryce Love, RB, Stanford -  2017 stats: 215 carries for 1,848 yards (8.6 average), 16 TDs.:  A home-run hitter of epic proportions, Love explodes through a seam and finds paydirt. Notre Dame "held him" to 125 yards on 20 carries, with a long of "only" 31 yards. He had a run of 50 yards or more in 10 of 12 games this season. Love is only average in terms of his power, but speed kills in any league.) (11-30-17):   http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000885496/article/top-17-future-nfl-stars-playing-on-cfb-championship-weekend

2018 NFL Draft prospects to watch in Week 13 (Stanford RB Bryce Love is one of the premier big play threats in the country. Love has forced 63 missed tackles as a runner this season and his elusive rating of 155.6 ranks No. 1 among all draft-eligible running backs. Those missed tackles often lead to long runs for Love as 69.6 percent of his yardage on the season came on big play runs of 15 yards or more. Love’s 29 runs this season of 15 or more yards also ranks first among all draft-eligible running backs.) (11-24-17):   https://www.profootballfocus.com/news/2018-nfl-draft-prospects-to-watch-in-week-13

MTS Notes: Biggest NFL draft risers; Scouting Lamar Jackson (1. Stanford RB Bryce Love: After taking over the position from Christian McCaffrey, Love has been outstanding. He has rushed for 1,723 yards and 16 touchdowns. He's averaging an absurd 8.8 yards per carry and he's fought through a high ankle sprain for the second half of the season.) (11-22-17):   http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000881193/article/mts-notes-biggest-nfl-draft-risers-scouting-lamar-jackson

Limping Love helps No. 20 Stanford hold off California 17-14 (11-18-17):  https://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/ncaaf/2017/11/18/limping-love-helps-no-20-stanford-hold-off-california-17-14/107845326/

Ranking 2018 NFL draft RBs by elusive rating (1. Bryce Love, Stanford - Total Touches/Total Missed Tackles forced/Elusive Rating: 185/62/168.9:  Bryce Love has dominated opposing defenses on more than one continent this season – Stanford played Rice in Australia to start the season and Love forced six missed tackles on only 13 carries. Love’s biggest games have come against UCLA where he forced nine missed tackles on 30 attempts on his way to 263 yards and against Arizona State where he forced 12 missed tackles on 25 carries and 301 rushing yards including 175 yards after contact. While it’s physically impossible for a Stanford running back to win the Heisman trophy, Love will have a future in the NFL.) (11-14-17):   https://www.profootballfocus.com/news/draft-ranking-2018-nfl-draft-rbs-by-elusive-rating

Stanford RB Bryce Love out with ankle injury vs. Oregon State (10-27-17):   http://www.espn.com/college-football/story/_/id/21173385/stanford-cardinal-running-back-bryce-love-ankle-injury

Bryce Love is in the middle of a three-man Heisman race (10-24-17):   http://www.sfgate.com/collegesports/article/Bryce-Love-is-in-the-middle-of-a-three-man-12300228.php

Ranking 2018 NFL draft RBs by missed tackles forced (1. Bryce Love, Stanford - 49 Total Missed Tackles Forced,  Carries/receptions/total missed tackles forced per: 134/4/47/2:  Love burst on to the scene this season in Week 1 in Australia, carrying the ball just 13 times for 180 yards and a touchdown with six missed tackles forced against Rice. He’s followed that up with multi-MT forced games including a whopping 12 forced against Arizona State on his way to 301 yards and three scores. Love has the ability to make defenders miss and break big runs, as he has 24 breakaway runs so far this season (15-plus yard runs), which leads the nation. Maybe the most special factor in Love’s game so far this season, is his ability to sustain these ‘chunk plays’ into huge gains for the Cardinal offense. On his 24 breakaway runs, he has gained 1,018 yards, meaning he averages 42.4 yards per. His 1,018 yards on breakaway runs is already the fourth-most recorded in the PFF era and that’s just through seven games as he trails only Melvin Gordon (1,325, in 2014), Tevin Coleman (1,156, in 2014) and Dalvin Cook (1,066, in 2015), who each amassed their totals over a full season.) (10-19-17):   https://www.profootballfocus.com/news/2018-nfl-draft-ranking-rbs-by-missed-tackles-forced

Which prospect surprised NFL execs most in season's first half? (With that in mind, I reached out to five NFL executives to get their opinion on which player's performance has surprised them the most this fall. Here are their answers.  Executive 3: Stanford RB Bryce Love
"He was outstanding the whole first half. Never saw 1,300 (yards) and 11 touchdowns coming. Very impressive vision, run after contact, quickness, inside run production, and finishing long runs."  Executive 5: Bryce Love  "There have been a couple guys that really impressed me during my West Coast swing. The running back at San Diego State (Rashaad Penny) is the real deal. Also, the quarterback at Arizona (Khalil Tate) has been a big playmaker for them. But, the biggest surprise for me has been Bryce Love up at Stanford. I had no idea he was this good.") (10-18-17):  http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000863425/article/which-prospect-surprised-nfl-execs-most-in-seasons-first-half

Midseason CFBTop25: Saquon Barkley leads future NFL stars (13. Bryce Love, RB, Stanford:   2017 stats: 135 carries for 1,387 yards (10.3 average), 11 TDs., Saquon Barkley is getting the love from the scouting community, but Love has nearly doubled Barkley's rushing yards and touchdowns production this season in only one more contest played and just 33 more carries. He had only one second-half carry in the team's rout of Oregon on Saturday night after covering 147 yards and two scores in the first half. Love shoots out of open lanes like a cannon and has accumulated at least one run of 50 yards or more in every game. Scouts might prefer the pure power and receiving/blocking skills of Barkley, but Love's home-run-hitting ability is special.) (10-16-17):   http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000862291/article/midseason-cfbtop25-saquon-barkley-leads-future-nfl-stars

Stanford-ND grades: RB Love, DE Thomas instrumental in Cardinal win (Top offensive grades: HB Bryce Love, 81.4; Stanford’s offense was ugly in this game, but they were actually running the ball well most of the time. With McCaffrey injured and standing on the sideline, Bryce Love was able to average 5.4 yards per carry and notch 129 yards. He was instrumental in both scoring plays the offense was involved with, fighting to the end zone before being adjudged to have fumbled across the line, only for a teammate to recover in the end zone and then walk in untouched for the two-point conversion.) (10-16-17):  https://www.profootballfocus.com/news/college-football-stanford-nd-grades-rb-love-de-thomas-instrumental-in-cardinal-win

MTS notebook: Scouting Stanford breakout star Bryce Love (10-6-17):  http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000857155/article/mts-notebook-scouting-stanford-breakout-star-bryce-love

Ten Eye-Opening Stats From the First Month of the 2017 Season (1. Stanford speedster Bryce Love has been hyped going back 18 months when he was playing behind Christian McCaffrey, and now he’s backed all that up in a huge way, bursting into the Heisman race by averaging 11.1 yards per carry through five games on 98 carries. In the past nine years, no one who has had at least 100 carries has averaged more than 9.1 yards. Here’s an even more impressive number: Only one FBS team (Notre Dame) has more runs of 20-plus yards than Love’s 18. McCaffrey had 14 as a junior last year, and during his record-breaking 2015 season, he needed all 14 games to get to 19.) (10-3-17):   https://www.si.com/college-football/2017/10/03/week-6-notebook-bryce-love-kelly-bryant

2018 NFL Draft Watch: Weekend Overview, Week 5 (Stanford running back Bryce Love is making his appearance in this column on a regular basis and has already fulfilled our preseason projection as our breakout running back candidate for the 2017 season. Love’s Week 5 performance was on another level from his previous work and was comparable to Barry Sanders’ dominant performances at Oklahoma State. Love carried the ball 25 times for 301 yards and three touchdowns. Love was the beneficiary of some great blocking from the Cardinal offensive line and was able to break some big runs without even being touched against Arizona State. Love’s ability to create on his own is without question as 175 of his 301 yards came after contact. He also forced 12 missed tackles on those 25 carries and has now forced 39 missed tackles as a runner while his elusive rating of 215.7 ranks No. 1 among all FBS running backs with at least 50 carries.) (10-2-17):   https://www.profootballfocus.com/news/2018-nfl-draft-watch-weekend-overview-week-5

Stanford RB Bryce Love has had no problems making defenders miss this season. (Most missed tackles forced on runs with 39) (10-2-17):   https://twitter.com/PFF_College/status/914981093090250753

PFF Draft Watch: Bryce Love dominates Arizona State (10-1-17):   https://www.profootballfocus.com/news/pff-draft-watch-bryce-love-dominates-arizona-state

PFF Draft Watch: Signature Stat Spotlight (Elusive Rating - HB Bryce Love, Stanford - PFF Edge stat: Leads all draft-eligible running backs with an elusive rating of 181.0 (minimum 30 carries).  Love also leads with 27 missed tackles forced and he’s averaged 5.0 yards after contact per rush.) (9-28-17):   https://www.profootballfocus.com/news/pff-draft-watch-signature-stat-spotlight

PFF Draft Watch: Draft Board Risers - Week 4 (Bryce Love - Steve Palazzolo identified Bryce Love as his breakout candidate for running back in his preseason positional overview. Love has rewarded Palazzolo’s prediction by breaking out in a massive way as he is currently leading the nation in rushing with 786 yards and is averaging 10.8 yards per carry with five TDs. Love is averaging 5.03 yards per carry after contact and has forced 27 missed tackles as a runner. Iowa State’s David Montgomery (189.9) is the only running back with at least 50 carries to have a higher elusive rating than Love’s 181.0 thus far this season. Love is a threat to score every time he touches the ball and already has 13 carries of 15 or more yards on the season with ties him at No. 1 with San Diego State’s Rashaad Penny.) (9-26-17):   https://www.profootballfocus.com/news/pff-draft-watch-draft-board-risers-week-4

Week 4 Risers and Sliders (Risers - Bryce Love/RB/Stanford: Love is yet another junior skill player watching his draft stock take off. He was a one-man show against UCLA, amassing an incredible 263 yards rushing on 30 carries with one touchdown. His rushing yardage was almost double the number Stanford totaled through the air, as the offense finished with 148 yards passing. Love is a slippery, elusive ball carrier with a burst and the ability to create yardage. He’s also a much better pass catcher out of the backfield than he’s given credit for. During our Stanford prospect preview we stamped him with a fifth-round grade, but that has since improved almost two full rounds.) (9-25-17):   http://draftanalyst.com/week-4-risers-sliders

PFF Draft Watch: Week 4 marquee matchups (RB Bryce Love Vs LB Kenny Young - Love’s school may have suffered a surprising defeat last week, but he still ranks second in the country among running backs with an overall grade of 88.1. He will try to add to his forced missed tackle-tally, which currently stands at 18 on 43 rush attempts. Doing so against UCLA’s Young may prove to be difficult, however, as the Bruin has yet to whiff this season.) (9-21-17):   https://www.profootballfocus.com/news/pff-draft-watch-week-4-marquee-matchups

2018 NFL Draft Watch: Weekend Overview, Week 2 (Only two games into the season and Stanford running back Bryce Love is tied for second in the nation with 14 missed tackles forced on only 30 carries. He’s been a big-play threat for Stanford with runs of 62 and 75 yards under his belt, and he’s averaging a gaudy 11.3 yards per carry. Love was pegged as a breakout player prior to the season.) (9-12-17):   https://www.profootballfocus.com/news/2018-nfl-draft-watch-weekend-overview-week-2

PFF Draft Watch: Week 2 marquee matchups (RB Bryce Love vs LB Cameron Smith - In Week 1, Love gave the Cardinal faithful reason for optimism in the wake of losing star RB Christian McCaffrey to the NFL, as Love ripped apart the Rice defense for 180 yards on 13 carries, 114 of them coming after contact (he forced six missed tackles). Smith, meanwhile, showed off his versatility against Western Michigan, posting a strong 83.2 run defense grade while allowing two receptions into his coverage to go for a grand total of three yards. Look for Love to challenge Smith directly in both run and pass phases this week.) (9-8-17):  https://www.profootballfocus.com/news/pff-draft-watch-week-2-marquee-matchups

Christian who? Love stars in No. 14 Stanford's win over Rice (8-27-17):   http://www.espn.com/college-football/recap?gameId=400935257

2018 NFL Draft Watch: FBS Running Back Overview (Breakout candidates - Bryce Love, Stanford: Love has only 141 career carries, but he’s made the most of them averaging 7.1 yards/attempt and a gaudy 4.5 yards after contact per rush. Throw in 39 missed tackles forced on those rushes and we can’t wait to see what he can do when given a full workload as first-round pick Christian McCaffrey’s replacement.) (8-10-17):   https://www.profootballfocus.com/news/draft-2018-nfl-draft-watch-fbs-running-back-overview



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