Posts Tagged ‘Notre Dame’

2014 NFL Draft Close-Up: Notre Dame Tight End Troy Niklas

Friday, April 4th, 2014

Troy Niklas wasn’t a full-time receiver in Notre Dame’s passing attack last fall, but he seldom left the field. (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 10th installment, we will take a closer look at the film behind Notre Dame tight end Troy Niklas.

Troy Niklas has football bloodlines. He has experience playing all over the field. And he also has the size, strength and athleticism to never leave the field.

But as a tight end who carries traits that cannot be taught, his development will hinge on what can be.

After all, as the nephew of Hall of Fame offensive lineman Bruce Matthews, the cousin of current NFL linebackers Clay and Casey Matthews, and the brother of former Air Force linebacker Austin Niklas, the 6’6”, 270-pound Niklas has done more than catch passes since his days at Servite High School. (more…)


2014 NFL Draft Close-Up: Notre Dame Defensive Lineman Stephon Tuitt

Monday, March 3rd, 2014

Stephon Tuitt’s size, speed and consequent versatility made him one of the most impactful defensive linemen in college football. He is seen as a first- or second-round NFL draft choice because of it. (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 sixth installment, we will take a closer look at the film behind Notre Dame defensive lineman Stephon Tuitt.

Size. Strength. Speed. Versatility.

As a defensive lineman and tight end at Monroe Area High School in Monroe, Ga., Stephon Tuitt brought all four traits to the table. And after the football program went 0-20 during his sophomore and junior campaigns, his traits helped lead a turnaround.

Tuitt and the Hurricanes went 11-2 in 2010, forging it into the third round of the Georgia Class AAA state playoffs. In the process, Tuitt forged into the recruiting picture.

He found himself ranked the 38th overall prospect in the nation by Sports Illustrated and 22nd by Rivals.com. He found himself competing in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl in San Antonio, Texas, as well as the Team USA vs. The World All-Star Game in Austin.

Shortly thereafter, he found himself in South Bend, Ind., as member of the Notre Dame Fighting Irish. (more…)


2014 NFL Draft Close-Up: Notre Dame Offensive Tackle Zack Martin

Monday, February 17th, 2014

Zack Martin was a mainstay on the Notre Dame offensive line. And while his future position is uncertain, there’s reason to believe the 52-game starter will fulfill similar purpose in the NFL. (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 fourth installment, we will take a closer look at the film behind Notre Dame offensive tackle Zack Martin.

A mainstay.

That’s what Zack Martin became for the Notre Dame football program, shortly after enrolling as a 6’4”, 280-pound Under Armour All-American in 2009. The Indianapolis native did not play a down as a freshman that fall, but he played nearly every down over the next four.

Martin was one of 11 Notre Dame players to start all 13 contests in 2010, notching 11 at left tackle and two at right tackle to tally 831 snaps. In culmination of his efforts, Martin was named Guardian of the Year, bestowed upon the Fighting Irish’s top offensive lineman.

He picked up where he left off in 2011. Martin started all 13 games while Notre Dame’s front conceded just 17 sacks and amassed 4.8 yards per carry. He garnered top-lineman recognition for the second-straight season in result.

Martin made it three-straight as a redshirt junior in 2012. The developed, 6’4”, 305-pound blocker earned second-team All-American acknowledgement from the Walter Camp Football Association, as Notre Dame finished the regular season 12-0 that December. And he earned his 13th start of the season a month later.

No. 70 was there when Alabama conquered Notre Dame, 42-14, in the BCS title game that January.

No. 70 was there after.

(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…)


Scouting Manti Te’o and Notre Dame’s Top 5 Prospects for the 2013 NFL Draft

Saturday, September 29th, 2012
Manti Te'o Notre Dame

Manti Te’o is an impressive all-around linebacker.

NEPD Staff Writer: Dan Hope

The Notre Dame Fighting Irish are making as much noise as any program in college football through the first four weeks of the season. The Fighting Irish are off to a 4-0 start. With an impressive set of wins already including back-to-back victories over Big Ten powers Michigan State and Michigan, Notre Dame looks like they are finally back to being one of college football’s top contenders.

The No. 10 Fighting Irish have talent on both sides of the ball as well as on special teams, but it is their defense that is making them a contender. Notre Dame ranks fourth nationally with only 9 points allowed per game, and are 16th nationally in total defense with 291.3 yards allowed per game.

The leader of that defense is senior inside linebacker Manti Te’o. If you’re a college football fan, you’ve known who Te’o was since he became an immediate star as a freshman at Notre Dame. If you’re an NFL fan, you should get to know him soon.

(more…)


Notre Dame/FBS Independents: Ten Year NFL Draft Case Study

Friday, July 6th, 2012
Michael Floyd Patriots NFL Draft

Michael Floyd is the highest drafted FBS Independent prospect in the last ten years.

NEPD Editor: Doug Kyed

Every Friday this summer I’m doing a case study on the last ten years draft history of every conference in the FBS.

Through these case studies we’ll be able to answer which schools and conferences produce the most talent, the most busts, the most players at each position and much more.

I know that it’s a lot of information to digest, but there’s some very interesting findings during this first week of research which will become even more telling as each week progresses.

This week, I’m taking on Notre Dame/FBS Independent teams. You can also read about the C-USA, Big Ten, ACC and MAC.

(more…)


Top Senior Prospects for the 2013 NFL Draft: Independents

Monday, July 2nd, 2012
Manti Te'o Notre Dame

Manti Te'o (LB, Notre Dame) is the top senior prospect from an independent team.

NEPD Editor: Mike Loyko

This week in our 2013 conference previews we take a look at the Independent Schools playing FBS football. Only four schools are currently unaffiliated and claim no conference allegiance: Notre Dame, Navy, Army and BYU.

Notre Dame is obviously the most heralded of those schools and have a couple high profile prospects for the 2013 Draft. Who are the best senior prospects on the other teams?

(more…)




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