Bowl-ing for 2011 NFL Draft Prospects 2.0

Daniel Thomas

If the Patriots target a running back in the 2011 NFL Draft, Daniel Thomas will be high on their list.

Watching some College Bowl Games today or tomorrow? Here is a quick list of prospects playing that the Patriots have expressed at least a passing interest in by sending scouts to a game or practice.

Daniel Thomas, RB, Kansas State

Thomas has a great size/speed/strength ratio, but might dance too much for some Patriots fans. He actually seems to have above-average vision for a back, but has trouble sticking with his decision if he sees a better hole appear.

Delone Carter, RB, Syracuse

This Orangeman also has a nice blend of speed and power, plus he will probably be available in the middle to late rounds.

Brandon Harris, CB, Miami

Solid coverage and great tackling will be what you see, but what is invisible is what NFL coaches will like. Harris’ work ethic, prep work, and love for the game will enhance his value.

Allen Bailey, DE, Miami

An enigma for us, Bailey flashes Top 10 talent at times. That said, he has some serious flaws. He isn’t on the field nearly enough for a college DE and is incredibly slow off the ball.

Cliff Matthews, DE, South Carolina

The Patriots have been to see South Carolina a few times, but we don’t think they were very impressed with what they saw out of Matthews. He seems to have all the physical tools, but the production against quality opponents just wasn’t there.

Rodney Hudson, OL, Florida State

A talented zone-blocker that could be a Pro-Bowler if he can improve his strength and size a bit.

Clint Boling, OL, Georgia

A four-position lineman that would excel run blocking from the interior of the Patriots offensive line.

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25 Responses to “Bowl-ing for 2011 NFL Draft Prospects 2.0”

  1. Sirk says:

    Ryan Pugh C Auburn and Mike Berry/Byron Isom G Auburn should be on lists. Sad, I guess y’all think Newton do all the work.

  2. JimC says:

    Actually I should say many teams in the top 20 need QB help. Due to a poor free agent listing of experienced NFL QB’s I say it will be like shooting fish in a barrel.

  3. JimC says:

    Don’t worry all…Lot’s of team in the top 10 are looking for Quarterbacks to replace what they currently have. When I look at a team like Buffalo drafting a Receivers in this mock I want to laugh. Buff, Cinci, Carolina, SF all need QB’s and this draft has a few good ones.

    • Steve says:

      I agree…many have Buffalo taking Green. They are crazy up there, maybe that’s why they’re saying he’ll go to them, but who’s going to throw him the ball??? They need a QB, then they need much more…receiver shouldn’t be that high on the list.

  4. Chris Molgard says:

    I do like those players they have up there I would like to see Tank Cardner for TCU as a linebacker for the team. He took the defensive MVP for the game. Also look at Andy Dalton as a backup to Brady.

    • Steve says:

      Dalton can read bible passages and motivate the team. I hate to see young people like that completely brainwashed to that point. We have a good backup right now, and Dalton is not any better, if even close.

      Gardner was everywhere in that game…amazing, but he’s smaller, and not the type of LB the Pats ever draft. He wants big, durable backers and has passed on all those types year after year…the Penn St guys…those types. Great players, but not for this system.

  5. Steve says:

    Does anyone know if Aldon Smith is even draft eligable? Maybe that’s why nobody is mentioning him…ha-ha.

    Well, if he’s not he will be next year and he’ll be a very high pick.

    I will say this, I think that more players who are on the fence should come out…if they have legit talent, because of the lower talent this year.

    He may be a guy who is eligable that will be told, and convinced, that he may as well come out now and be a top 15 pick…the situation being right. Some other players may get the same advice….I’m hoping, seeing the Pats won’t those top 33 players to be as strong as possible.

    • Liam says:

      A. Smith is a Redshirt Sophomore I believe. They rarely declare, but anything’s possible.

      • Steve says:

        Yes, if he goes back to school he could secure a top 10 draft position next year by adding some more strength and having a solid season. I love his upside…he’s a special talent and maybe he gets sold that he could be taken in the teens, or higher. Personally, I feel he could be one of the biggest risers if he comes out, and some agent may sell him on that. He’s a pass rushing specialist now, with signs of being a 3 down player….those guys get taken high because they change games. SEE Jason Pierre-Paul and how he climbed. I like Aldon Smith much more than him. A team like the Pats could be more patient with him and build his game….god knows he’ll get the support/coaching etc…

  6. Steve says:

    I just watched most of the Rose Bowl myself…trying to see if I’m off with my opinion on JJ Watt, and I stand by my first opinion: that he’s not for us, and not a first round talent. I see him make effort plays, which is great; but, I see him get dominated way too much when he’s actually blocked. Meaning, I see him making plays mostly when he’s, foolishly, not accounted for.
    He’s the type of guy you want to see at the Senior Bowl practices (if he’s even a senior???) to see how he does in those one-on-one drills with a quality guard. Even if he’s better than I’m stating, he’s still undersized for us (not able to to take on pro double teams and free up line backers etc…), and I still see an unathletic running style…a big dope. I would be shocked if he was taken anywhere by the Pats.

  7. John says:

    Steve was right. I had the Patriots picking JJ Watt at the end of the first round which is way too high for him. He was unimpressive in the Rose Bowl which will make him a late 2nd, early 3rd round pick. If he can’t make an impact against a top college team, how will he play against NFL caliber players? If you have the 32nd pick in the draft, you want to get a solid starter. He’s still a good player but it would be a big mistake to draft him that high.

  8. Pete says:

    great input Steve. it’s amazing how many people don’t think about size when considering the Patriots needs. when thinking about our DE’s I immediately think of someone 6’4″-6’6″ 295-325 lbs. For our OLB’s 6’3″ – 6’5″ 255-268.
    I’d love to see Quinn fall to us at for the first pick to play OLB, but I think we all know that’s a long shot.
    Is there anyone you like in this draft that fits as our 3-4 DE in the 1st 3 rounds?
    as far as OLB go, Quinn and Kerrigan intrigue me the most followed by guys like Beal and Houston…then maybe Matthews, Steven Friday, Brooks Reed.

    • Steve says:

      Well, I’m the guy going nuts over Quinn…hoping they trade up in a weak draft and get a serious player like him. I really like Beal and Aldon Smith…I see Beal as more of a ready to convert & play guy…would love to see them take him; but, I see Smith as an ideal…a real upside. Kerrigan is tough…especially at 15, but I love his effort and size, just don’t like his running. The little bit I’ve seen on Houston was not so impressive. I’d have to check out your other names…I’m just catching up.

    • Steve says:

      On “Quinn falling to us” (at 15, or where we end up) don’t count on it. I realize he didn’t get to play this year and he lied etc…but, in this terrible draft, and with his skills, especially being able to rush the passer, and he’s system flexible…3-4, 4-3

      Many mocks have him falling to the teens, and some beyond, I just do NOT see this happening…he’s just too good.

      I feel most teams realize, but would never admit, that the NCAA is an F’n joke, to put it mildly. That these situations are happening everywhere, and often…he just got caught. I do see the issue being his lies…he’ll be grilled on that. But, he doesn’t show signs of being a dope or useing dope etc…

      In this draft, guys like Darius, Fairley, will rise to the top….especially with no top OT’s. There are only a handful of blue chip players this year. I’m counting less than 10, then there is a huge drop off in talent…2nd round type players.

      I’m hoping that the Pats move up a few slots tomorrow with an Oakland loss and a few wins by some other teams. Maybe with QB’s being the usual wildcards a player will slip to them that they like, or maybe they only have to move up a few spots to grab someone of quality…lowering the price of going up.

      Also, when Quinn goes to the combine watch out….all the eyeball stuff will take over, and his transgressions will seem less important. His athleticism will blow people away. I feel the same about Aldon Smith more lately. I’m predicting he’s in the top 10 come draft day.

      • Liam says:

        Realistically, we could only move up to 13: KC beats Oakland, Minn beats Detroit, Wash beats NYG. We could then move up a few places with a trade, say to Cleveland at 8ish. Solid chance of Quinn being available there. whilst I would love this move, I don’t really expect it.

      • Steve says:

        KC screwed us! I was hoping for the same thing, and that’s with KC having something to play for. Well, lets just hope they’re payback is they have to come here and play us because that will be an easy win if they play like they did against Oakland.

  9. Liam says:

    Also, Brandon Harris is going back to school. Unlikely now that we take a corner in the first round, although I would have said that last year, and look how that turned out.

    • Steve says:

      There are still a few more corners, but I bet they wait for the 2nd round on a system guy…someone they like, to state the obvious. I think they fill this need (huge need!) with a free agent…bringing in a few possibly; hopefully one top guy.

  10. Liam says:

    Steve, what you say about 3-4 ‘ends’ is true in a Patriots style, Fairbanks-Bulloch 2-gap system. A phillips style 1 gap system like the Cowboys or the dolphins employ is a different beast, employing gap shooting, play making linemen like randy starks or jay Ratliff. These types of players might be better considered ‘ends, although whats in a name?

    I agree that there are few D. linemen in the upcoming draft that fit the Warren (T or G) mold, and we are not going to get a chance at Darius or Fairley. Maybe Cam Jordan towards the end of the first? Plays with nice technique but maybe lacks a little size.

    At the end of the day, we might be best served by re-signing G. Warren and playing the WWW defence. Remember also that BB makes extensive use of sub-rushers from the interior like Wright anf Myron Pryor.

    • Steve says:

      I agree…I guess the point I’m making is that it confuses the average guy out there. They hear, or read, “defensive end” and think they can preplace Warren(s), Seymore etc…Cameron Jordan is not an end in our 3-4 base…he’s not a tackle.
      This being a Patriots site (that’s why I’m here) it’s important for fans to realize what they should be looking for. Some guys you can just rule out because of size alone at that positions…you’ve got to be big and strong. Look at Brace…he’s about 330 minimum! Pryor, Deadrick…these are big dudes because they have to be very big and athletetic

      By the way: JJ WATT IS TERRIBLE, he doesn’t fit…big effort kid, but he’s not better than Mike Wright by a long shot, and you don’t draft situational players in the 1st round. You are looking for foundations to your team…which means reaching, or going to another position where I guy looks like they can start and play more downs, not situationally.

  11. Steve says:

    I’m unimpressed with Thomas…if he’s there in the 3rd that would be ok, but you said it best…too much of a dancer to me…I just don’t see a top NFL talent.
    Compare him the to north/south explosion and power of LeShoure and you’ll see the gap.
    Bailey is a big “NO”…all I hear is inconsistant, and that’s not going to get him on this team; not to mention he’s undersized to play DE in the 3-4….every down.
    Which brings me to a point. I don’t like it when 3-4 lineman are termed “defensive ends”, even though they are often at the end. They are “tackles”….big, strong, athletic tackles who have to occupy mutliple blocks and not give up ground…leaving the tackling to the LB’s; while you like to see them push the pocket and make a few plays themselves.
    Seymour was an ideal…very rare, but Warren is the typical guy you are lookiing for; while Wilfork is the nose, but he’s such an athletic freak that he’s actually able to play anywhere….amazing when you think about it. So, think of guys like Warren when looking for prospects: 6’4” plus, and at least 300 lbs, more like 310 plus, yet able to move, think, and be in shape to carry high end play into the 4th quarter. Again, not easy to find…that’s why G. Warren really saved this team this year with Ty Warren out.
    If you’re talking about a situational guy like Jarvis Green then you are not going to spend a high pick on them.

    Calling these large super athletes “ends” just messes me up…the 3-4 employes three massive tackles that are the foundation to the entire system working, and it’s a thankless job (in the media and to the casual fan), yet look at their pay, which comes from BB, and you’ll see the value placed on their play.

    The downside this year, I don’t see many of them worth taking that high, beyond Fairley & Darius, and many are saying Fairley seems to be a pure 4-3 guy. I’m not so sure of that…JJ Watt I have to see more of, but the other guys are clearly 4-3 “ends/tackles” to me…a bit undersized, yet quick, high motor. I’m not talking about the converts to OLB either..

    Hudson seems just too small, and if you’re saying he’s got strength issues while being only 6’1″ and 284, or so, I say “NO WAY”. There’s physics involved here….heart & technique can only go so far. If Pouncey is 80-90% of what his brother is than he is a much better choice…night & day.

    • mike says:

      I like what your saying. But converts will work. Im really looking at ryan kerrigan who is slightly undersized.
      You see 3-4 olb like ware is difficult to find. You just have to make due with converts

      • Steve says:

        What are you saying? Kerrigan is not a tackle, he’s either going to play as a 4-3 end, or as an OLB in the 3-4. I worry about his running in our system, but he’s interesting and you have to like the effort seeing there will be a huge step to convert and you’ll need to be mentially tough to make it work. Just don’t like him anywhere towards the top of the 1st…more like an end of first in this weak draft or 2nd round.

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