Archive for the ‘College Football’ Category

2014 NFL Draft Close-Up: Texas Tech Tight End Jace Amaro

Sunday, February 2nd, 2014

Texas Tech head coach Kliff Kingsbury, a 2003 Patriots draft pick, optimized the versatility of Jace Amaro this fall. And since then, No. 22 has emerged as one of the premier tight ends in the 2014 NFL draft. (USA Today Sports Images)

NEPD Editor: Oliver Thomas

In the coming weeks and months leading up to the 2014 NFL draft, NEPatriotsDraft.com will profile college prospects that potentially fit the needs and draft seating of the New England Patriots. In this second installment, we will take a closer look at the film behind Texas Tech tight end Jace Amaro.

Jace Amaro isn’t fused to one position on the football field. But if there was a title suited for Texas Tech’s 21-year-old junior, it would be called “new-age” tight end.

An evolving position across the NFL landscape, coaching staffs are finding ways to mismatch defensive personnel with tight ends that can catch first and block second. In turn, general managers and scouting departments are searching for prospects with the size, the fluidity and the skill to be used interchangeably within an offense.

The 6’5”, 260-pound Amaro fits the prototype. (more…)


2014 NFL Draft Close-Up: Notre Dame Nose Tackle Louis Nix III

Monday, January 27th, 2014

Notre Dame’s Louis Nix III plays with force rarely seen in a nose tackle prospect, and NFL scouting departments have taken note. (USA Today Sports Images)

NEPD Editor: Oliver Thomas

In the coming weeks and months leading up to the 2014 NFL draft, NEPatriotsDraft.com will profile college prospects that potentially fit the needs and draft seating of the New England Patriots. In this first installment, we will take a closer look at the film behind Notre Dame nose tackle Louis Nix III.

Louis Nix III won’t win a track meet. He won’t run a 40-yard dash in under 5.2 seconds, either. But his 6’2”, 342-pound mass, multiplied by his downhill quickness off the snap, has equaled force for the Notre Dame Fighting Irish defense.

And largely due to his fulfillment of Isaac Newton’s second law, the 22-year-old redshirt junior finds himself ranked as the top nose tackle prospect in the 2014 NFL draft. (more…)


2014 NFL Draft: FCS (and below) Prospects To Watch

Monday, January 27th, 2014

Jimmy Garoppolo hails from Eastern Illinois, which also produced Tony Romo. Can he also become a franchise level QB? (Photo: US Presswire)

By Marc Sluis, Staff Writer

Most fans, and even some scouts, think that NFL talent can only come from big, traditional schools like Alabama, Texas or Ohio St. What about those that aren’t even FBS schools? No way right? Tony Romo, Marques Colston, Vincent Jackson, Jared Allen, Jahri Evans, Victor Cruz and Joe Flacco are all current players who will tell you something different. Want to include former NFL stars? The list expands to names like Walter Payton, Terrell Owens, Larry Allen, Michael Strahan and someone named Jery Rice.

(more…)


2014 NFL Draft Stock Update: Who’s Rising?

Thursday, January 16th, 2014

Tre Mason, who helped lead the Auburn Tigers to the BCS Title Game, has run his way into the first round discussion (Photo: US Presswire)

By Marc Sluis, Staff Writer

Even though most prospects don’t go through fundamental changes in their talent level or skill set during the year, their stock certainly fluctuates like it does. The same phenomenon occurs in finance as stock prices surge and dip daily despite very little actually changing at the company level. It’s a little different scenario when you’re dealing with evaluating people like us draftniks do, but that is part of the fun. The bowl season is over and the All-Star or Senior circuit is just underway, so let’s take a look at whose stock has risen the most recently. (more…)


2014 NFL Mock Draft: Postseason Edition

Monday, January 6th, 2014

Blake Bortles capped a great season with a big bowl victory, and potentially a big pro pay day (Photo: USPresswire)

By Marc Sluis, Staff Writer

It’s that time of year again. Draft season is heating up. The nation’s focus may still primarily be on the playoffs, but for scouts and draftniks things are about to The draft landscape is fluid and some of the landmark events like the combine and Senior Bowl will play a role but let’s do our best job guessing what could happen. (Draft order used is prior to the first round of the playoffs)

(more…)


2014 NFL Draft: Wide Receiver Rankings (Oliver Thomas)

Monday, January 6th, 2014

Florida State’s Kelvin Benjamin has a rare combination of size and speed. And in turn, he has the attention of NFL scouting departments. (USA Today Sports Images)

NEPD Editor: Oliver Thomas

January is a month of divergence for the NFL. Eight teams are left in the Super Bowl hunt; 24 others have cleared out lockers and dispersed for the offseason. But before long, all 32 will be back in the same lane, preparing for the 2014 NFL draft.

It’s a process of personnel evaluation from now through May. There will be all-star games, combines and pro days to gauge a player’s value in the same setting as their peers. Yet in actuality, 90 percent of their value has already been determined.

It’s been determined by the game film and the eyes viewing it.

Now big boards and positional rankings must be taken with a grain of salt. It ultimately comes down to preference, need, and fit.

One area where that rings especially true is at wide receiver.

Over the last three drafts, 90 receivers have been selected by NFL teams – including the Cleveland Browns’ compensatory pick of Josh Gordon in 2012. Of those 90, 36 were chosen within the first three rounds, netting an average of 12 annually.

That trend is expected to continue this spring. (more…)


2014 NFL Draft: Friday Bowl Preview

Thursday, December 26th, 2013

Minnesota and the athletic freak RaShede Hageman will take on Syracuse in the Texas Bowl on Friday. Hageman’s versatility and physical ability might intrigue Belichik and company (Photo: US Presswire)

By Marc Sluis, Staff Writer

As we begin to put the holiday season in the rear view one phrase will help help us start the New Year with joy or at least get us through: playoff football. The NFL will crown a champion within the next few months and while the college football season ends with something more like a mix between an exhibition and pro tryout it can still be exciting. Especially if you are an NFL draft fan.

Here are the names to watch on Friday as we could be seeing much more of them on Sundays next year. (more…)




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