NEPD Staff Writer: Mike Loyko
The Little Caesars Bowl was a game that had it all, onside kicks, kick returns for touchdowns, turnovers, flea flickers, and a lot of Jordan White. Here are how the top 2012 NFL Draft prospects played during the bowl game.
#83 WR Jordan White, Western Michigan
- Has good size, thick lower body, will hold up against contact
- Works the middle of the field, picks up yards after the catch
- 49 yard TD on first play after a turnover, gets behind the defense, has better speed than advertised
- Has good burst off the line
- Has no fear going across the middle, continuely goes after balls, knowing he will get hit
- Finds soft spots in the zone, breaks off route to get open
- Faces consistant double-triple coverage but still gets open
- White is much quicker than I thought he was, he knows how to use his speed and when not to go full speed to get open
- Used on reverses and even throws the ball, WMU tries to get the ball to him anyway possible
- Runs pretty solid routes, including a beautiful post corner to open up the second half
- Adjusts to the ball, makes faboulous 1 handed catch
- White lines up primarily as the slot WR, a role I think he will be featured in at the next level
No matter the situation, double team, triple team, zone coverage, man coverage White finds a way to produce. He understands coverages very well and knows what to do to beat them. He can find the soft spots in the zone and he can run his routes good enough against man coverage to get open.
He has very good hands, and rarely drops a ball. He will work the middle of the field and take on contact. While he isn’t very fast and won’t post off the chart agility numbers he is fast enough and knows how to use his speed.
White is going to be a very productive possession WR. He is exactly the type of WR that the Patriots have shyed away from taking for awhile, but he is the type of productive, smart WR that they need to start targeting. Maybe his ceiling isn’t as high as some other guys, but his production will be there and I truly believe he will be successful in the NFL. His two ACL tears are going to scare teams aways, so I ultimately think White will be drafted somewhere between the 4th-6th rounds of the 2012 NFL Draft.
#93 DT Kawann Short, Purdue
- Lines up at NT and DE in the 3-4, has the ability to play 4-3 DT
- No real pass rush on first drive, attempts to get his hands up on a pass and is pancaked
- Plays way to high and stands straight up when trying to pass rush
- Short is much better against the run, shedding blocks and scrapping down the line
- Takes on the double team; textbook, stones both blockers and makes the play at LOS
- Plays standup DE, uses a nice rip move to beat OT inside, forcing the QB to scrammble- his best pass rush move
- Moves around alot, starts standing up, rotates inside to DT and drops into a zone blitz
- Can be overaggresive, rushes right up field, which allows the trap play to set up, must have better awareness
- When he keeps his pad level low and fires off the ball he is tough to keep out of the backfield
- Gets blocked too often, its so clear when he is going full speed as opposed to not giving full effort
- Seems best suited for an interior tackle who can disrupt and get penetration
- Starts second half a DE, moves inside to NT, immediately sheds two blocks to make the tackle
- Gets hands up consistantly when pass rushing causing the QB to alter the throw
Short is a versatile junior defensive lineman who I think is best suited to play inside full time. He is much more productive and much more disruptive when he is manning the middle of the defense. He can take on double teams and shed blocks. I think he could play NT and also 4-3 DT at the next level. His effort level is not there on every single play, when it is he is able to penetrate and make plays. When its not he is blocked very easily. Short has a very good frame on which to build on standing 6’3″ 305 pounds.
I think he will come back for his senior season and should be one of the better DL in the Big Ten. If he does decide to enter the 2012 draft I think he is more of a 5th round pick.