Articles | Draft Breakdown - Part 4

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Exclusive Interview with Temple OT Dion Dawkins

Written by Justin Melo on March 20, 2017

Despite starting 40 games for Temple as a left tackle, most draft analysts see Dion Dawkins as a guard at the next level. I decided to ask him which position he sees himself playing in the NFL, including if he’s comfortable playing a position he’s never played before, the differences in his technique depending on the pass rush situation, and more. Enjoy.

Thanks for taking the time to speak with us Dion. You started 40 games at LT for Temple. However, it seems that a lot of draft “experts” are of the opinion that you’re a better fit at guard. What position do you see yourself at in the NFL?

Dawkins: It doesn’t matter to me personally. At the end of the day, I’m a football player. I have to know how to play both tackle and guard, and I’ll eventually have to learn how to play (read more…)


2017 NFL Draft: Post-Combine Mock Draft, Top 100 Big Board

Written by Jonah Tuls on March 18, 2017

The 2017 NFL Combine is in the books, free agency is underway, and draft season is in full gear. Some players have raised their draft stock in a big way, while others have plummeted. The news of Sidney Jones IV, the talented Washington cornerback, tearing his achilles at his pro day factored in to both my top-100 big board and first-round mock draft. If the injury does sideline him for the entire 2017 NFL regular season, he could reasonably fall to the late third round. In this piece, I not only have a first-round mock draft on one page, but also my latest top-100 big board on the next page. Read, enjoy, and feel free to reach out to me on Twitter for your feedback!

 

Mock Draft

 

1. Cleveland Browns: Myles Garrett, EDGE, Texas A&M

– This is an easy decision. Myles Garrett is the undisputed top prospect (read more…)


Exclusive Interview with Clemson TE Jordan Leggett

Written by Justin Melo on March 15, 2017

Just before the Clemson pro day occurs tomorrow, I had the opportunity to speak with their starting TE Jordan Leggett. Having won the National Championship this season, the Clemson pro day is sure to attract a large crowd as they possess a number of impressive prospects. Plenty eyes will be on Leggett, who will be running the 40 yard dash for the first time after not doing so at the combine. In this exclusive interview, we discuss a strange encounter that Leggett was faced with at the combine, his fit at the next level, and much more. Some video analysis is also included. Enjoy.

Thanks for taking the time to speak with us Jordan.

Leggett: Oh yeah, no doubt sir.

With the combine now behind us, I imagine that’s an event you looked forward to for months, maybe even years. How would you summarize your experience, and (read more…)


More Than Just Power: Why Samaje Perine Can Be a Three-Down NFL RB

Written by Nicholas McGee on March 13, 2017

There is an argument traditional power backs do not fit in today’s NFL.

With concerns over the durability due to their physical style and the league’s shift towards offenses reliant on the passing game and stretching the field, power backs are looking increasingly out of place.

That poses something of a conundrum for a couple such runners in the draft, Leonard Fournette and Samaje Perine. There are legitimate concerns over whether Fournette can hold up as a three-down back at the next level, while Perine has received little attention, his presence in the class overshadowed by that of his Oklahoma teammate Joe Mixon.

But Perine does not come with the off-the-field issues of Mixon and has what it takes to be just as effective in the NFL, albeit in a different way.

With Carlos Hyde having largely impressed with the 49ers and – more notably – LeGarrette Blount racking up (read more…)


Budda Baker: When talent trumps size

Written by Justin Melo on March 13, 2017

It’s no secret that NFL teams and scouts alike covet big, physical players. Turn on just about any general manager introductory press conference of the last several years, and you’ll hear similar claims from them all: they’re looking for big, tough, smart, physical, coachable, team-first players. But the numbers show that teams have been willing to ignore size when it comes to drafting defensive backs, and with good reason.

Just under a year ago, SB Nation published this article on how NFL teams are shying away from small wide receivers, but not necessarily small defensive backs. It stated for every sub-6’0 WR picked in the first five rounds, six sub-6’0 defensive backs are being selected. That sentiment rang especially true during the 2016 NFL Draft, when 17 sub-6’0 defensive backs were selected in the first five rounds, versus just three sub-6’0 wide receivers in the same rounds.

(read more…)


Exclusive Interview with Washington EDGE rusher Joe Mathis

Written by Justin Melo on March 2, 2017

With the combine now officially underway, Washington EDGE rusher Joe Mathis took time out of his vigorous training schedule to sit down with me for an exclusive interview. Mathis is one of the more slept on edge rushers in this class, and we discussed the combine of course, his preferred position at the next level, what he’ll tell teams that may question his ability to stay healthy, and more. Some video analysis is also included. Enjoy.

We’re here with Washington EDGE rusher Joe Mathis. Thanks for joining us today Joe.

Mathis: I appreciate your time sir.

My pleasure. With the on-field combine drills about to get underway, how have you been preparing both physically and mentally?

Mathis: I’ve been working hard preparing for the combine since November. I start my day off at 6 am with my workouts and I don’t come home until (read more…)


2017 NFL Draft Prospect Interview: Xavier Woods, S Louisiana Tech

Written by Pete Smith on March 1, 2017

Louisiana Tech safety Xavier Woods is getting ready to participate at the NFL Scouting Combine after coming off yet another productive, successful season for the Bulldogs. Woods spoke a little bit about his career, how he’s gotten here and what he expects to come out of this week.

Pete Smith: This season, you were listed at 219 pounds, but measured in at the Shrine Game at 203. What did you actually play at this season?

Xavier Woods: I was never 219. The season I played mostly at 198. At the end, I was around 202-203.

PS: How would you characterize your role in the Bulldogs defense? You were obviously a safety and probably a strong safety but you did a lot more than that.

XW: Well, I wasn’t strong. I was more of a free but just rotated strong. That’s kinda how our defense was. I was the nickel (read more…)


Exclusive Interview with Charlotte DL Larry Ogunjobi

Written by Justin Melo on February 27, 2017

With the combine just days away, defensive line prospect Larry Ogunjobi took time out of his busy training schedule to speak with us. The former Charlotte 49er leaves the program for the NFL with an impressive 29.0 tackles for loss, and 5.5 sacks to his name. Among other topics discussed, Ogunjobi spoke about his mindset entering the combine, disputing the notion that football players are “dumb,” and more. Enjoy.

We’re here with Charlotte DT Larry Ogunjobi. Thanks for taking the time to speak with us Larry. With the combine just days away, how have you been preparing?

Ogunjobi: I’m trying to excel at everything, I’m just out here working hard, trying to perfect my craft.

Is there a drill in particular that you’re expecting to perform especially well in?

Ogunjobi: The plan is to really just do well at all of them. I want (read more…)


Virginia Tech WR Isaiah Ford and the Art of Body Control

Written by Nicholas McGee on February 15, 2017

Complete receivers are very difficult to find and, in this year’s draft class, there is perhaps only one player who could be described as such in the form of Western Michigan’s Corey Davis.

Davis is the most well-rounded wideout in the draft, though many consider Mike Williams of Clemson to be the top pass-catcher available.

Like most of the receivers in the class, Williams excels in one area in particular rather than in every facet of his game. His size allows him to physically dominate defenders and make contested catches on a consistent basis.

Virginia Tech’s Isaiah Ford shares this knack for winning the fight for contested balls but, rather than relying on physicality and catch radius, Ford is a reliable target because of his body control, which also enables him to haul in inaccurate passes, often in spectacular fashion.

Unlike Williams, Ford is not receiving first-round hype but, though (read more…)


Exclusive Interview with Arizona SS/LB Paul Magloire:

Written by Chris Nicolaou on February 14, 2017

Let’s start with your earlier years; you’re a JUCO guy who played at Arizona Western in Yuma. Talk about that journey and what led to your decision to attend there.

Magloire: I switched positions to strong safety and coaching changes. I worked hard at it and learned a lot. At spring ball, scouts saw me. I got interest from Arizona and then got tons after that.

You led the Matadors to a 11-1 record as a second team all American who had 101 tackles, did you ever think you’d get recruited?

Magloire: That was the goal. Make it to a big time school. I had faith in myself and I worked really hard.

When you got recruited by Arizona, what position did they recruit you to play for the Wildcats?

Magloire: At first, strong safety. I played strong safety until week six of this season. Injuries happened to linebackers and (read more…)


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