NEPD Staff Writer: Mike Loyko
After reviewing the film here is a breakdown of some draft eligible prospects that we were watching in this ACC duel.
Before I get into the breakdowns it’s important to note that both teams and Clemson especially have a ton of underclassmen talent. While we are tracking those players and at some point we can begin to project them into the draft, we are focusing solely on draft eligible prospects today.
#98 DT Brandon Thompson, Clemson-
Thompson has had a breakout season, he was a little off my radar before this season, but after seeing the way he has played this season, he has elevated himself into the discussion for best one of DT in the draft.
- Really good initial quickness of the snap, delivers pop, good use of hands to disengage the center
- Liked how he extends his long arms which creates separation from blocker, basically controlling the LOS
- Needs to read counters better, and feel where the block is coming from, was washed down the line to easily on a number of plays
- Don’t know if he will be an impact player, or just a solid rotational tackle
- Played too high at times, but his strength allows him to be unmovable
- Really dominated the center at times, pushing him into the backfield before the hand off was complete
- Looked the part – big, long athletic frame
- Battles hard, even when it appears he has lost a one on one battle – he is always hustling and chasing the ball
- Right now I would say Thompson is a little on the raw side, has a ton of potential as many Clemson defensive lineman do
- 2nd round grade from me
#83 TE Dwayne Allen-
Allen is a fast rising prospect who has created a lot of buzz this year. With the TE class not having too much to offer in terms of Day 1 talent, Allen may be the lone exception to that rule.
- AT 6’4” 265 he is much more athletic than you think
- Great blocker, is utilized as lead blocker on reverses and sweeps
- Clemson likes to split him out, with his ability to catch the ball and block, he should be a match up problem at next level
- Won’t run away from anyone, but uses his body to create space
- Second round grade
#20 CB Jayron Hosley, Virginia Tech-
I feel like Hosley is a cornerback who is flying under the radar a little bit. All this kid does is make plays, led the nation in INT’s last year he is well on his way to putting up another big INT number this year.
- Had another INT, always seems to make a key play
- 6 tackles, but I wouldn’t consider him an overly physical corner due to his size, will however step up in run support especially on the perimeter
- Term ball hawk is thrown around a lot but Hosley is one
- Really good instincts allow him to anticipate throws
- Reads the QB well, seems like he really understand coverages
- Will need to add bulk, will be over matched in the NFL by bigger more physical WR
- Right now I have him in the 3rd round
#40 DE Andre Branch, Clemson-
It would be impossible to watch this game and not be impressed by Andre Branch. He was a monster on Saturday racking up 3 sacks, 5 TFL and 11 tackles. It seemed like he lived in the backfield, and made every play. If we saw this performance every game Branch could become a much higher pick, problem is he is often inconsistent in games I have seen.
- One of the best pass rushers in college football
- Again very raw, uses his athletic ability and speed to beat OT
- 6’5” long and lean, will need to get stronger to hold up against the run
- Used his hands nicely to avoid cut blocks
- Possible conversion to OLB, but probably best suited for a sub package rusher
- Definitely struggled keeping contain on reverses and sweeps, gets turned easily—able to track down the ball carrier due to his motor
- Mid round grade right now—don’t know if he is another Ricky Sapp