2013 NFL Draft Scouting Notes: Purdue vs Marshall

Aaron Dobson NFL Draft

Aaron Dobson makes tough catches look easy. (Photo: US Presswire)


NEPD Editor: James Christensen

The Purdue Boilermakers won the game and have the biggest “name” prospect for the 2013 NFL Draft. However, Marshall had the top prospect in this match up.


#3 WR Aaron Dobson
-Lining up as outside receiver.
-Quick slant route, put his foot in the ground and accelerated out of his break.
-Separates at the top of his route, unreal one-handed catch.
-Out route, good hands catch and tucks it securely.
-Wins on vertical route, but has to stop for underthrown ball and is out-fought for the ball.
-Late getting his hands up on slant, ball gets in on his body, drops it and it gets picked off.
-Body catch in traffic, adjusts to ball thrown a bit behind.
-“Sluggo” route, sold it well and gets a half step on the corner – ball overthrown.
-Didn’t show elite speed, hasn’t been able to run past corners after separating.
-Gets off the press, beats his man vertically, ball overthrown.
-Another good route, creates separation on the deep curl, inaccurate pass.
-Stutter go, gets over the top of the corner but ball is severely underthrown.
-Loses position on slant route near goal line, ball ripped out.
-Dobson could have had 3-4 touchdowns with a QB that can deliver the ball downfield.

Overview: Dobson has improved in his route-running from a year ago. He still has the ability to make catches that perhaps only he and two other people on earth can make. That said, he can improve his physicality when fighting for the ball and the occasional concentration/technique drop needs to be cleaned up. Dobson is still my #1 senior receiver in the 2013 NFL Draft.

#11 LB Devin Arrington
-Former safety lining up as inside linebacker – looks a little small.
-Jumps in the wrong hole, RB fooled him easily.
-Bites hard on play-action, trouble tracking the ball.
-Stays on his feet against cut block, wraps up the RB’s feet to make the stop.
-Physical when he is asked to play, getting some good jams in.
-Sugars the A-gap blitz, backs off and spies the quarterback.
-Breaks down in space, able to make the solid tackle on receiver.
-Not sure if he is dinged up, missed the rest of the half from what I could see.
-Back in for the second half, walled off easily on second level by guard – not a lot of fight.
-Gets off poor block attempt, wraps up on the quarterback.

Overview: Arrington just didn’t have the linebacker mentality that I wanted to see – that tough, physical style that wants to hit people. He moves well, doesn’t have the safety instincts that I was looking for. I’ll have to see a lot more before I give Arrington a draftable grade.


#93 DT Kawann Short
-Plays some 0-tech as a 3-4 NT and as a 1-tech 4-3 DT.
-Doesn’t start the game as Purdue is in a 3-man front.
-In as nose tackle, double teamed early and often.
-Staying low out of his stance, gets under the OL’s pads and walks him back with a big bull rush.
-Got high and double team puts him on skates.
-Too quick for guard, slants in and blows up the RB in the backfield.
-Getting plenty of rest, especially on third down.
-Times his jump and blocks the field goal – good hustle play.
-Lines up in an offside position.
-Getting his hands up to disrupt passing lanes when he can’t get to the quarterback.
-Slants into the backfield again, holds off OL with one arm, tackles RB with the other – impressive.
-Nice swim move, combines on TFL with Bruce Gaston.
-Recognizes screen quickly, smartly retreats to the line of scrimmage.
-Looks much quicker off the ball this year, way too quick for the guard.
-Pursuing down the field, better motor than last year.

Overview: I though Short had a very good game. If a defense needs an interior presence for 35-40 snaps a game, this is your guy. His technique, motor and quickness have all improved from last year, he should be a top sixty pick.

#21 CB Ricardo Allen*
-Lining up as outside cornerback as well as the nickel spot – blitzes from time to time.
-Beat outside on pivot route, took a big false step.
-Comes up to press, solid jam, disrupted the release.
-Contains run from the nickel position, bends and makes an impressive tackle for loss.
-Forces outside release, can’t recover after being picked by teammate.
-Physical at the line in press, giving some good jams.
-Loses his man, shows fluid hips in recovery.
-Picked initially, recovers quickly and is in hip pocket on slant – cuts in front of receiver, picks it off and takes it to the house.

Overview: Allen is a very smooth corner that looked comfortable inside and out. He can play physical and is decent in run support. If Allen declares for the 2013 NFL Draft, I’d expect him to be a top 100 pick.

#28 CB Josh Johnson
-Lining up as outside cornerback, a bit small – also returning punts.
-Man off, closes quickly on slant route and makes solid tackle.
-Poor positioning, cheats on the route and allows WR to stop and make easy catch.
-Good jam at the line, willing to get physical with receivers.
-Beat vertically by Dobson, but gets his head around and locates underthrown ball, disrupts the catch.
-Pick six, drives on the the in route and snatches the ball on the run.
-Reads route concept, passes off the in route and levels the out route, really drove on the ball.
-Allows Dobson to cross his face in press, beat vertically, recovers quickly – good speed.
-Bites on stutter-go, recovers quickly.
-Great play disrupting the catch – stuck his hand in on slant route, had the strength to rip it out.
-Very confident, borderline cocky attitude.

Overview: I hadn’t watched a lot of Johnson before this game and came away very impressed. He played physical and his break on the ball was very impressive. Add that to his special teams value and ball skills and he looks like an attractive option for the 2013 NFL Draft.

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