2015 NFL Draft: The Unique Performance Calculation

Written by Justin Higdon, Senior Draft Analyst on March 2, 2015

Chris Conley

Compiling player rankings for an NFL Draft class is like trying to put together hundreds of small jigsaw puzzles. Several years ago I thought it was all about the tape. Watch three games or more of each prospect then make a call. For 200 players that was at least a 600 piece puzzle. But each year I’m finding more pieces under the couch and in the garage. I wanted to consider known injuries and off-the-field issues like arrests and suspensions. Those are pretty self-explanatory. Some importance should be placed on measurables – height, weight, arm length and hand size. Then I wanted to find a way to factor production into the equation. That led to the “box score scouting” tiers I’ve written about previously. And of course, I could never forget about all of those wonderful bits of data gathered from the athletic testing at the scouting combine and (read more…)

Fly Eagles Fly…up the Board for Mariota?

Written by Bryan Perez on February 28, 2015


The rumors connecting Chip Kelly and the Eagles with a move into the top 10 to draft Marcus Mariota (QB, Oregon) continue to circulate through the puffery phase of the NFL Draft season.  A recent report from suggests that there’s fire behind the smoke, with growing evidence that the ‘Birds will make an aggressive play to get Kelly’s guy.

DB’s Take:  It’s hard to tell which rumors are ‘fact’ and which rumors are ‘fiction’ during this stretch of the NFL Draft season, but the obvious link between Kelly and Mariota, combined with the fact that the Eagles are without a true, franchise quarterback on their roster, tends to lend some credibility to the reports.  It would be a match made in football heaven, as Mariota would walk into a system that he’s mastered; all he’d have to do is adjust to the speed of the NFL game. (read more…)

Reliable Hands: Wide Receiver considered one of the safest positions in 2015 NFL Draft class

Written by Bryan Perez on February 28, 2015


On NFL Network’s “Path to the Draft,” Daniel Jeremiah stated that the 2015 NFL Draft class of wide receivers is one of the safest prospect groups of the year, a break from the traditional opinion that tends to apply to the pass catchers.

DB’s Take:  The evolution of the NFL passing game is making it a little easier for receiver prospects to come into the League and contribute right away.  While you’re likely to see the position group make a quicker impact than most, the true measure of their success will be how long they can sustain a high level of production.  We’re not used to seeing so many rookie receivers top 1,000 yards and emerge as their team’s go-to-guy.  As that becomes the norm, the “shock” value of the productive rookie pass catcher will wear off, and as such, the definition of a “safe” receiver will evolve and become tougher (read more…)

Hundley Calls Playing for the Cardinals a “Dream”

Written by Joe Wedra on February 28, 2015

Brett Hundley

On Friday’s edition of the Rich Eisen Show, a podcast turned radio show just this year, former UCLA QB Brett Hundley said he’d love to play for the Arizona Cardinals. As Dan Parr of writes, Hundley notes that the potential future move would be a “dream come true”.

DB’s Take: This one might not be too far-fetched! What’s the future in Arizona if they don’t go after a rookie this year? Logan Thomas is an option, but it’s safe to say the fans in Arizona aren’t too thrilled over the prospect of that. Keep this one in the back of your head for the future. Presents: The RSP Film Room with Matt Waldman

Written by Bryan Perez on February 28, 2015


The RSP Film room is back again, and I’m excited to share this tutorial about the running back position as Matt Waldman is joined by Chad Spann, former Northern Illinois and NFL running back.  In today’s episode, Matt and Chad view the tape of Ameer Abdullah, RB, Nebraska.  Abdullah had one of the more impressive 2015 NFL Combine performances, so I thought it would be fun to take a pre-combine look at the Cornhusker’s tape.  Remember:  Matt’s comprehensive NFL Draft Guide, The Rookie Scouting Portfolio, is available for purchase on April 1, 2015, and can be ordered HERE.

The Cleveland Browns Draft Implications of the Josh McCown Signing

Written by Dan Matney, Analyst on February 27, 2015

Photo courtesy of

Add another potential starting quarterback to a mix that includes 13 different starters since the 2008 season.

The Cleveland Browns inked veteran quarterback Josh McCown to a three-year deal Friday. The financial terms were not disclosed in a report from

The Browns were under the impression they found their franchise signal-caller last May when they selected Johnny Manziel with 22nd selection in the 2014 NFL draft. After a disastrous season that included two underwhelming starts, both losses, and a trip to rehab, the Browns chose to seek more stability in the quarterback position in signing McCown until they have a firm grasp on who will be their quarterback of the future.

McCown, a 12-year vet, had a subpar year in comparison to his 2013 with the Chicago Bears, a season in which he boasted a 13-to-1 touchdown to interception ratio while filling in for Jay Cutler.

During (read more…)

Wide Receiver in play for Dolphins at No. 14 overall?

Written by Bryan Perez on February 27, 2015


The Miami Dolphins announced the release of Brian Hartline and Brandon Gibson, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter.

DB’s Take:  The rumors about Mike Wallace’s future continue to swirl, as many are speculating he could be next on the chopping block.  While second-year man Jarvis Landry is a promising player at the position, you’d have to imagine the ‘Fins will be in play for a receiver in the first round.  It’s unlikely that either Amari Cooper (Alabama) or Kevin White (West Virginia) will still be on the Board, but Devante Parker (Louisville) could still be available when Miami is on the clock.

John Owning’s 2015 NFL Draft Edge-Rusher Rankings

Written by John Owning on February 27, 2015

Randy-Gregory-2 contributor, John Owning, offers his 2015 NFL Draft EDGE rankings:

1. Randy Gregory, Nebraska – First Round

He is an excellent edge-rusher prospect who has rare physical traits and athletic ability. His weight is an issue, but he could step in right away and make an impact as a Leo or 3-4 outside linebacker. Gregory can also be a fantastic nickel rusher initially as he adds weight to his frame for a 4-3 team.  He is nowhere near his ceiling yet and is still an excellent player who makes a significant impact in every game. He has the potential to be a perennial Pro Bowler.

2. Bud Dupree, Kentucky – First Round

He is a rare talent who was used incorrectly at Kentucky. He has shown consistent improvement from year to year and should continue that trend when he gets to the NFL. Dupree is (read more…)

Luke Easterling’s 2015 NFL Draft Positional Rankings: QB

Written by Luke Easterling, Senior Draft Analyst on February 27, 2015


1. Jameis Winston | Florida State | 6’4″, 231 | Grade: Top 5

In a draft full of players with great potential but plenty of caveats, Winston is the poster-child. While much ado has been made about Winston’s off-field issues (and understandably so), he also has enough on-field concerns to give NFL front offices pause. His mechanics and on-field decision-making aren’t consistent, but his arm talent, football intelligence and leadership ability are rare traits that can’t be taught. He’s the most pro-ready passer in this draft, and should be the top overall pick.

2. Marcus Mariota | Oregon | 6’4″, 222 | Grade: Top 5

Winner of this year’s Heisman Trophy, Mariota suffers from the “system QB’ argument thanks to his many predecessors who have racked up gaudy stats in spread offenses but flopped at the next level. Mariota’s skills as (read more…)

Gurley’s Knee Uncertainty Continues

Written by Matt Horn on February 26, 2015

Todd Gurley

Questions about Georgia running back Todd Gurley’s surgically repaired knee continue with the draft now two months away. After tearing his ACL in November, Gurley declined to have his knee inspected at the combine and will not participate at Georgia’s Pro Day. Bryan Fischer of says that Gurley has been doing light jogging, but he is taking the recovery process slowly.

DB’s Take: Teams expect and even encourage this kind of behavior when dealing with such a serious injury. While Melvin Gordon III has made a strong case for being the first running back off the board, it is highly unlikely Gurley falls out of the first round. Even if he isn’t ready for a Week 1 start, teams understand how much potential the bulldozing running back has once he is fully healed.

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