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NFL Draft Prospects - Week 11
DraftInsiders.com and ProFootballDraftNetwork.com
will be collaborating on a weekly article posted mid week during the college football regular season to review the prior weeks most notable performances from a NFL Draft 2010 perspective.
Photo - Tackle Russell Okung – Oklahoma St
Frank Coyle - www.draftinsiders.com
Draft Insiders’ Digest –19th Season
OT Russell Okung – Senior - Oklahoma St
Athletic nimble senior left tackle has been very impressive over the past few seasons. He has moved up the charts significantly off those top efforts. He has fine size, agility and athleticism and has graded out high at the demanding left tackle spot. He uses his wingspan and footwork very effectively in pass protection, displaying the skill set to man the blindside tackle spot. He has been fully tested in the talented Big 12 and grades out high weekly vs some of the nation’s best speed rushers that has moved to the top of the charts and probable top ten prospect next spring with a big postseason. He is a big mobile kid with natural left tackle athleticism and a highly developed skill set.
QB Colt McCoy – Senior - Texas
Talented senior passer has played brilliantly again this season, showing coolness and playmaking ability in weekly pressure situations. Colt has shown well developed skills with another strong effort that includes completing 72.3% of passes for 2,792 yards and 19 TDs. He displays the talent to make all the throws with fine accuracy and timing, in addition to going through his progressions quickly. This prospect has the package NFL head coaches look for in a top flight starting QB after an extensive playing career. His accuracy is amazing both in the short and intermediate game and the ability to pick up secondary receivers well with few mistakes overall. With a big week at the Senior Bowl, he should guarantee an early selection. He was one of our elite prospects on our Senior Bowl invite list since September.
RB Dexter McCluster – Senior - Mississippi
Fast scatback set a school record with 282 rushing yards and scored four TDs as the Rebels defeated Tennessee, 42-17. He had 324 all-purpose yards while scoring on runs of 15, 23, 32 and 71 that spelled the difference in Ole Miss’s first win against Tennessee since 1983. He is dangerous in a number of roles – running back, receiver or return specialist. He is capable of hitting the home run from anywhere on the field and must be accounted for on ever down by a defensive back. He is the ultimate Wildcat performer who can line up at any skill position and make the big play. Despite his smallish size, he is the type a coach must see in a number of different roles to fully utilize his talent. He is one who can be a difference maker weekly if in the right position.
RB Jonathan Dwyer – Junior – Georgia Tech
Big physical junior running back had another strong performance in the Tech win over Duke that clinched the ACC Coastal division. He is a powerfully built back who has performed very well, displaying very strong inside running with the good burst of speed to break big plays. He is having another fine season after setting a conference high of almost 1400 rushing yards for an amazing 7 yard average per carry in 2008. He uses his powerful big frame to run over defenders, though he has the lateral quickness and speed that allows him to break into the second level and make the long gainer. He has reliable hands and has shown fast improvement as a receiver in addition to the physical talent and toughness to be a solid blocker.
LB Rolando McClain - Junior - Alabama
Athletic junior linebacker has been instrumental in the success of the top rated Bama defense over the past few seasons. He has been a highly productive defender who plays a very physical style of defense and attacks in a downhill fashion. He is a young versatile athletic backer who can play a few positions, displaying the ability to flow to the ball very well and finish with strong sure tackling. He is still a raw defender in some respects but a prospect with a blue chip label with the potential to be a special NFL player. He faces a big decision by January and needs a strong postseason at the NFL Combine to warrant a high draft selection.
Denis Krusos - Editor
Pro Football Draft Network
WR Golden Tate, Junior, Notre Dame
Tate has had a brilliant junior year and continued making plays against Pitt. The Panthers defeated the Irish 27-22, but Tate was the spark to a 4th quarter comeback. His 87-yard punt return for a touchdown gave Notre Dame some hope, but the comeback fell short. Tate caught 9 passes for 113 yards (12.6 per) including an 18-yard touchdown reception. The 5 foot 11 and 195 pound true junior has played like Carolina’s, Steve Smith, this season. Tate can make the acrobatic catch downfield or turn a short completion into a big play with his running ability. The Notre Dame playmaker has a decision to make as to whether to enter the 2010 NFL Draft, but his stock is hot. If Notre Dame decides to replace Charlie Weis as its head coach then this will likely further increase the odds that Tate will turn pro early.
CB Myron Lewis, Senior, Vanderbilt
Vanderbilt lost again (24-13 to Kentucky) in what has been a dismal season. Myron Lewis was a bright spot against Kentucky with an interception, a pass break-up and a pair of tackles. Lewis has excellent size and a knack for finding the football (10 career interceptions). However, the Commodores do not have much of an offense and cannot stop the run. Lewis does not have many opportunities to display his skills against teams that are trailing and forced to throw the ball. Kentucky ran all over Vanderbilt (308 yards on 58 attempts (5.3 per)). The Wildcats passed for a mere 91 yards on 7 completions in 15 attempts. They also threw 2 interceptions, but why throw the ball when you cannot be stopped on the ground. Lewis may not have the speed to play cornerback in the NFL, but he has the size and ballhawking skills to convert to safety.
DE Tyson Alualu, Senior, Cal
Cal knocked off Arizona 24-16 and Alualu had another productive game. Alualu plays defensive end in Cal’s 3-4 defense. He registered 7 tackles, 2 tackles for loss, a sack, a forced fumble and a key deflection of a pass late in the game. It is a testament to his intensity, motor and skills that he is so active from his 3-4 defensive end position. Alualu plays with leverage and is quick. He utilizes an effective swim move to defeat blocks. The Cal defensive lineman likely will be able to play the defensive tackle position in a 4-3. In addition, although he is smaller (6’ 2” and 295 lbs) than the typical 3-4 defensive end, he is not easy to push around. Dallas nose tackle, Jay Ratliff, is showing that undersized 3-4 defensive linemen can succeed, if they have quickness and excellent technique. Alualu should be able to play in a variety of defensive fronts.
QB Jake Locker, Junior, Washington
The Huskies’ quarterback threw 3 touchdown passes in a 48-21 defeat to Oregon State, but was not sharp. Locker completed 14 passes in 23 attempts (61%) for only 153 yards (6.7 yards per attempt). His 1 interception was a classic example of locking onto a receiver. He was sacked 4 times and did little damage with his legs. The junior quarterback has a ton of talent, but has substantial room to improve upon the finer points of playing the position. He is not yet adept at looking off the safety and has to speed up his decision making. Locker would really benefit from working with coach, Steve Sarkisian, for another year. If he decides to return to Washington and has a big senior season then Jake Locker could be the 1st pick in the 2011 NFL Draft.
WR Danario Alexander, Senior, Missouri
Missouri bombed Kansas State 38-12 with a bunch of big pass plays. Alexander had a huge game with 10 receptions for 200 yards and three touchdowns of 56, 16 and 80 yards. His three scoring receptions were different and illustrate Alexander’s considerable talent. Alexander on the 56-yard score used his jumping ability and height to outmaneuver the defensive back for the ball. The 16-yard touchdown was an example of a fine route that left him open in the corner of the endzone. Alexander’s 80-yard reception was a showcase of his open-field running ability and speed. The Missouri wide receiver has displayed big play ability since his true freshman year, but was slowed by a wrist and knee injury the past two seasons. He has stayed healthy this year and the production (81 receptions for 1,238 yards (15.3 per) and 11 touchdowns) is impressive. His durability has to be a concern, but tall receivers with his athleticism are coveted in the NFL.