NEPD Staff Writer: Doug Kyed
This is our preview of players we will be watching at the Senior Bowl in Mobile next week, and a brief profile of each player.
You can also read the Senior Bowl Defensive preview.
Kirk Cousins, QB, Michigan State – Had an impressive career as a three year starter at MSU. Projects as a backup at the NFL level, doesn’t have any elite skills, but is proficient everywhere. I think he projects as a third round pick.
Nick Foles, QB, Arizona – Three year starter who’s gotten better every year. Has NFL prototype size and deceptive mobility. Might take some time to adapt to a pro style offense after spending three years in a college spread offense that boosted his accuracy. I suspect he’ll be a second round pick, but could move up with a good senior bowl.
Ryan Lindley, QB, San Diego State – Great size at 6-3, 230lbs, but Lindley is still a raw prospect. He’s got a strong arm, but struggles with accuracy on tougher passes. He never completed more than 57.7% of his passes against subpar competition. Unless he has a strong draft season, I only see him as a 5th round pick.
Kellen Moore, QB, Boise State – Incredible college player, but his size and arm strength will limit him from being a viable NFL starter. As accurate as they come and he can impress with his mobility. He’ll be drafted in the 6th or 7th round and can be a backup QB at the next level.
Brandon Weeden, QB, Oklahoma State – Has the size and tools to be a first round player, but his age, 28, holds him back. He can make all the throws and his accuracy at OK St. was very impressive. If he has a strong draft season, I could see him as a second round pick.
Russell Wilson, QB, Wisconsin – If only he were taller. Has the arm strength, accuracy and decision making, but he’s only 5-11. It was pretty incredible how quickly he picked up the Wisconsin offense and how well he did with it. I still like Wilson as a prospect. Likely a 5th or 6th round pick.
Vick Ballard, RB, Mississippi State – JC player that played for Miss St. his junior and senior seasons. A big strong back with surprising speed, he’s the kind of between the tackles runner a lot of teams are looking for. Fifth round prospect.
Terrence Gannaway, RB, Baylor – Big power back who carries his 240 pounds well. Has surprising speed for his size. Opened eyes against Washington in the Alamo bowl running for 200 yards and five touchdowns. Limited receiving skills, I could see him as a fifth round pick.
Cyrus Gray, RB, Texas A&M – Gray was slowed by a shoulder injury and missed his last two games of the season. If he can prove his shoulder has healed, he could jump up draft boards. Could be one of the faster backs in his class and shows off nice receiving ability. Could be a nice complement back going in the fourth round.
Dan “Boom” Herron, RB, Ohio State – Does everything well, but nothing elite. Ran for 678 yards in seven games for 5 yards per carry behind a strong offensive line. I see a fourth round pick and a career backup at RB.
Doug Martin, RB, Boise State – Short, but solid back who had three impressive seasons for the Broncos. He’s the kind of complete back a lot of teams are looking for. I could see him as a stater in the NFL if he can prove that his speed is for real. I like him as a second round pick.
Isaiah Pead, RB, Cincinnati – One of the faster players we’ll see on offense at the senior bowl, Pead has legit 4.4 speed. He might need to bulk up, currently sitting at 5-10 200, but there’s a lot to like about Pead. Has value catching out of the backfield, could project as a solid 3rd down back. Potential 3rd rounder.
Chris Polk, RB, Washington – Has deceptive speed for a back his size. Solidly built at 5-11 222lbs, he can run between the tackles or cut back outside. One of the better pass catchers out of the backfield, catches the ball away from his body and can make guys miss after the catch. Late first round-early second round prospect.
Chad Diehl, FB, Clemson – Was merely a blocking back at Clemson, grabbing only 13 touches total during his career. Has good projected speed for his size (6-2, 260). I watched Diehl a couple times this season and saw a FB who can get good power in his initial blocks, but struggles to hold contact. 7th round/UDFA for me.
Bradie Ewing, FB, Wisconsin – Strong in both pass block and lead blocking. Showed some decent hands lining up all over the field raking in 20 receptions for 246 yards this season for Wisconsin. Gets low and shows some nice leverage against pass rushers. Could be a versatile player, 6th or 7th round.
Chris Rainey, RB, Florida – Has the speed for the NFL, but I don’t see the kind of power needed to run between the tackles. Could be an interesting 3rd down back in a Danny Woodhead type role. There’s word out that Rainey could run a 40 in the 4.1s, file that under: things I don’t buy even a little bit. Late fifth/early sixth round pick.