2013 NFL Draft Scouting Notes: USC vs. Syracuse

Syracuse QB Ryan Nassib had a big opportunity on Saturday, did he impress?


NEPD Editor: Mike Loyko

For the second week in a row I get to watch the best offense in college football take on an opponent they should thrash. While Syracuse struggled to produce NFL talent in recent years they have two intriguing prospects this season.

Unfortunately LT prospect Justin Pugh did not play in the game, leaving QB Ryan Nassib as the top Syracuse prospect in this game. How did Nassib fare against a very good USC defense?


#12 Ryan Nassib, QB
– 3rd and Short- his reads are covered and backside pressure comes, runs out of the pocket, throws the ball as he is being hit right to a USC defender – Really poor decision
– Rolls out to his right has WR wide open, but doesn’t reset and misses the target high – Not a good start
– Three step drop, needs to get rid of ball, but he pump fakes and gets sacked
– Has little to no touch on short/intermediate passes, winds up like an outfielder throwing the ball and throws it as hard as he can
– Hasn’t been accurate yet, despite having WR open
– Overthrows WR on post in the middle of the field on 3rd down, would have gone for big gain
– Nassib has an NFL arm and can fit it into tight spaces, he hasn’t shown the ability to harness his arm, one speed on every throw
– Locks on to Sales, doesn’t take his eyes off of him and then overthrows him
– Hasn’t tried to look off the safety, it’s like he’s predetemined who he’s going to
– Does a good job running the two minute drill, didn’t force throws, took what was given and knew clock/game situation
– End of Third – Swing Pass is slightly behind the running back, forces him to hesitate and lose momentum
– Lacks touch on short 5 yard option route, too fast for tight end to handle, forces fourth down
– Sets feet and steps up in pocket delivers accurate skinny post throw for big gain
– Throws another 5 yard seam pass as hard as he can, definitely lacks touch
– Hangs in there with rush bearing down, but doesn’t step into throw and ball is woefully inaccurate
– Has wide base, goes through his reads and they are all covered, hangs onto ball too long and takes sack
– Has a WR wide open on the field side, no defender within 7 yards, Nassib overthrows him out of bounds
– Good touch on 17 yard vertical pass to Sales in the endzone, Sales was able to get off the jam
– On next play, he overthrows the tight end for the two point conversion — inconsistent

#21 Shamarko Thomas, SS
– Recognizes the fullback dive on 4th and 1 comes up to the line of scrimmage and attacks the A gap, blows up the play
– Plays aggressive, likes to come up into the box early and deliver hits
– Bites on the double reverse, leaves backside wide open and Lee makes a big gain
– Gets veery good jam on Robert Woods on 4th down, rides him all the way out of bounds – physical player
– Reads the screen to Woods, shows very goo burst, closes quickly on him and makes the low tackle – Big play
– Shows blitz, calls it off last second and then procedes to cover his zone nicel- Barkley looks his way but pulls it down
– Reads swing pass to Lee on third down, closes quick and gets to Lee, he misses the initial tackle, but makes Lee hesitate long enough for help to get there
– Has shown good instincts, burst when the play has been in front of him.


#7 Matt Barkley, QB
– Fundamentally sound on his roll outs, keeps the ball high, shoulders square, when he goes to throw he pulls his front shoulder open and delivers accurate ball.
– Receivers drop back to back passes, Barkley makes the correct read and checks it down to wide open receiver.
– Beautiful throw on 3-step slant to Lee – SAF/LB jumps the route, but Barkley pump fakes quickly which gets Lee wide open, he is able to walk into the endzone.
– Showed his awareness of coverages and an ability to manipulate the DBs with his eyes/actions
– Reads soft coverage, makes the easy throw to wide open TE instead of forcing it to Woods/Lee and Grimble breaks tackles for a touchdown.
– Threw a little block for Robert Woods on reverse.
– Perfectly placed fade route executed with Marquise Lee. Threw it to a spot and let Lee go get it.

#2 Robert Woods, WR
– YAC monster, catch screen at line of scrimmage, breaks two arm tackles and picks up the first down
– Holds his block on toss sweep to his size, gets the CB on his heels
– Comes across the field and looks to block the safety for Redd – Good football IQ
– Take reverse, makes two subtle cuts at full speed without losing momentum, runs across the field and outruns the defense for a 76 yard pick up.

#21 Nickell Robey, CB (Jr.)
– Blitzes out of the slot, but comes in too hot, overruns the RB and allows for big pickup – needs to break down
– Reads swing pass, breaks off his receiver and aggresive, low form tackle against much bigger player
– Gets pancaked trying to come into the box to tackle the RB, OG tossed him
– Does a nice job keeping outside leverage on QB bootleg, forced him to cut it back into middle of the field
– Second game in a row where he has been the best DB on the field, continues to stick in the back pocket of whatever WR he is covering
– Hips open and close so smoothly, “click and close type corner”
– Breaks on swing pass instantly, keeps receiver in front of him and makes the tackle

#78 Khaled Holmes, OC
– Gets off the ball quick, good intial push and gets his man sealed off
– Continues to get to the second level quickly, good push at the first level, takes a good angle and gets to the linebacker on screen pass
– Sells the run nicely on play action – stays low and fire out- has the linebacker coming up
– Doesn’t get enough movement on fourth and short, gets stood up
– Solid double team, stays hip to hip and opens huge running lane
– Gets rolled up on right ankle, looks bad, leaves game on the cart (injuries with him have been a concern)

#7 TJ McDonald, FS
– Takes on the RB on the hole, doesn’t attack the gap instead he “catches the RB” which allows him to pick up 1st down
– Too aggressive an angle towards the sideline, misses the tackle on WR, put his head down and dove at his feet

#42 Devon Kennard, DE – DID NOT PLAY

#96 Wes Horton, DE – DID NOT PLAY

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