Saturday, September 20, 2008

Who Are You Watching Now?

Greetings, G-Force.

Stack is Back! A seismic event.

It's another Saturday morning in which I deal with a combination of Insomnia and coffee beans. Are the two intertwined? I doubt it. Normally, I don't allow myself to drink caffeine past 1:00 in the afternoon - unless, of course, Jack Daniels is included.

I'm starting to get a grip on players to keep your eye on throughout this College Football Season. A quick rundown shows me that I'm not overly impressed with any of the Senior at QB this year. Chase Daniel has shown me the most. But, is he a product of the system and the NFL talent around him? I'm curious to see him against Texas later this year. I will make an exception for Curtis Painter as I have not watched him play yet this year. But, I have seen the other top Senior QB's look absolutely average. These names include: Cullen Harper, Hunter Cantwell, Tom Brandstater, Brian Hoyer, Todd Boeckman, and John Parker Wilson. In my eyes, Drew Weatherford, Casey Dick, Mike Teel, and Sean Glennon do not have an NFL life. I'm going to keep my eyes on Rudy Carpenter from Arizona State and Stephen McGee from Texas A & M today. Oh, and Patrick White is not an NFL QB. He could be a WR, but he's definitely not a QB.

Junior QB's Matthew Stafford and Todd Reesing are guys that excite me. I'm not sure that Reesing is big enough for the NFL, but he's got a lion's heart and a competitive nature that is unteachable. I wonder how Tim Tebow's skills translate in the NFL. I'm not convinced that he will be a legitimate player at the next level. He can prove it this year. Matt Grothe is a fiery competitor. But, he appears to be too much of a "me-first" guy for my liking. His decision making is also questionable at times.

I'm highly interested in the RB position this year as it could be a need spot for the Packers in the '09 draft. Thus far, my top RB's in order would be:

1.) Knowshown Moreno, Georgia
2.) Arian Foster, Tennessee
3.) James Davis, Clemson
4.) Chris Wells, OSU
5.) Javon Ringer, Michigan St
6.) CJ Spiller, Clemson
7.) LeSean McCoy, Pitt

Top WR's - I'm going to go into great detail with regard to the WR position in the coming weeks as I think this is a position of strength. Along with QB, at this point, it's also a position in which I'm most knowledgeable about with regards to this years college cast. I'm not yet ready to rank Louis Murphy, FL and Derrick Williams, Penn State. Murphy has to show me more and I want to see Williams compete in Big 10 play. I also think that guys like Kenny Britt and Tiquan Underwood, Rutgers, had dramatically overrated. Mohammed Massoquai has all the potential in the world, but has underachieved. It's funny that most "experts" consider Carlton Mitchell USF's best WR when everytime I watch them Taurus Johnson is far more productive and attractive as a playmaker. At North Carolina, "experts" talk about Brooks Foster because of his size & speed, but when I have watched UNC football, I consistently see Brandon Tate & Hakeem Nicks as the primary producers. I'm also going to hold off on ranking Demetrius Byrd & Brandon LeFell, from LSU. If Kenny McKinley, South Carolina, is healthy, he is an elusive guy after the catch and your typical Steve Spurrier style WR. I'm not certain that he translates into an NFL prospect.:

1.) Jeremy Maclin, Missouri - best player in college football.
2.) Michael Crabtree, Texas Tech
3.) Percy Harvin, FL - a total game changer. Put the ball in his hands and he's thinking 6 points.
4.) Brian Robiskie, OSU
5.) Darrius Heyward-Bey, Maryland - Great size & speed. Drops the ball too much, but tons of upside.
6.) Aaron Kelly, Clemson - His physique always piques my interest as production does not always meet expectations.
7.) Juaquin Iglesias, Oklahoma
8.) Patrick White, WVU - He has a big time shot to be a weapon at the next level.

TE's are also a position of strength in this year's draft. At this stage, I rank them:

1.) Travis Beckum, WI
2.) Brandon Pettigrew, OK St.
3.) Chase Coffman, Missouri - you know it's in his blood! He's Paul Coffman's son. You know that he'd be comfortable in Green & Gold.
4.) Bear Pascoe, Fresno St. When I watch him, I think he's a perfect fit for our offense. Reminds me of Chmura. Big blocker. Great hands. Run after the catch.
5.) Cornelius Ingram, Florida
6.) Garret Graham, WI - Doubt he'll come out, but I'm a homer and had to list him...

I'll get more involved with the defensive side of the ball, but a few quick hits of things that have caught my eye from people that you may not be currently paying attention to:

- Brandon Spikes, ILB, FL has superstar written all over him.
- Jasper Brinkley, ILB, South Carolina has the type of attitude that you want on your team. A battler who pursues with passion.
- If you have yet to see Brian Cushing, USC, OLB play - you are missing out.
- Zach Follett, OLB, Cal, is the one guy that I'd never heard of before this year who has grabbed my attention. He reminds me of a Midwestern LB who is stuck out west. He takes on blockers. He can cover the TE. He slaps wrists. He can rush the passer. He's versatile. He does not always make the play but he always seems to be in position. He's thinking turnover when he makes the tackle.
- While Follett impressed, Anthony Felder, OLB, Cal, was getting pushed around and making tackles 5-10 yards downfield. He makes a lot of tackles, but they just aren't in the backfield.
- Marcus Freeman, OLB, OSU, could not keep up with the speed of USC.
- Matt Shaughnessy, WI, DE, has an NFL lifeline. Active hands. Good pass rusher. Solid against the run. He might be the best WI defender since Troy Vincent.
- Mortty Ivy, WVU, OLB, is a talent and is worthy of a draft choice, I just hope it is not for the Packers.
- Malcolm Jenkins, OSU, CB, can play on my team any day of the week.
- Kevin Barnes, Maryland, CB, is a solid zone CB. Great hands. Poor tackler. Avoids contact. But, he's a risk taker that will draw heavy interest and will make plays.
- Morgan Trent, Michigan, CB, is an absolute disappointment. Yes, he had a pick last week, but he struggles in man coverage.
- David Bruton, ND, S, is a football player. Throw him on the field and let him live on instincts.
- Derek Pegues, Mississippi St, S, is another Willie B. Soft on defense. Electric as a return man. Plays the crowd.
- Fili Moala, USC, DT, is quick as a cat. Reminds me of Shaun Cody, which scares me.
- Mississippi St. DT's Cortez McCraney & Jessie Bowman are not discussed by the "experts" but I'll bet we hear their names on draft day. McCraney gets a push from the inside on pass downs and Bowman is a load on run downs. Meanwhile, Mississippi St. S/CB, Keith Fitzhugh did not show me the playmaking skills required to compete. But, he likes contact.
- Colorado has 4 defenders that warrant NFL attention. In order, I'd rank them DT George Hypolite, DT Brandon Nicolas, DE Maurice Lucas, and LB Brad Jones.

For today, keep your eye on Tennessee's D-Line. Deep with prospects. Let's see who stands out.


Talkin' S-Mac.


Talkin' S-Mac said...

Cornelius Ingram has an ACL injury - not sure what the extent is...

Alterraun Verner, UCLA, CB is a junior ball hawk. Finds contact and the football.

Talkin' S-Mac said...

- The same day I wrote that Mississippi State DT's Cortez McCraney & Jessie Bowman were prospects, they were responsible for the 5th best output in the history of Georgia Tech football. They probably need to be watched again.

- Brandon James continues to be Florida's Mr Excitement on special teams.

- Brandon Spikes continues to be an elite - if not the best LB - in college football.

- Michael Jones, WR, Arizona State, might be the NEXT Dennis Erickson guy! Good after the catch. Goes up and gets the ball in traffic. Seems to be able to run all the routes.

- Alphonso Smith, CB, Wake Forest, is not overly aggressive against the run, but he's a game changer. He'll come on the blitz. He can over out of the slot or on the outside. Did not show me a lot of bump-and-run, but that could be because he was playing FSU's horrid offense. He plays the ball as good as anyone & he returns kicks.

- Victor Harris, CB, Va Tech. He'll play offense, special teams and defense. He's a terrific all around athlete and understands the game.

- Bruce Johnson, CB, Canes - a legit prospect who breaks well on the ball.

- Stanley Arnoux, LB, Wake - looks a little stiff. Might lack awareness.

- Luis Vasquez, DE, Arizona State can play the run & the pass. Will be worth a look in the late rounds. A quick, undersized end.

- Kevin Patterson, S, Wake Forest. Can you say playmaker? Attacks the ball in the air. Goes for the strip when making the tackle.

- Aaron Curry, LB, Wake Forest is one of the best LB's in college football. Can rush the QB. Can cover the TE or the RB. Can play the run. Good in space. But, he does miss some tackles.

- Chip Vaughn, S, Wake Forest is a hard working, intelligent guy who plays the run well from the S spot. Sure tackler. Football smart.

- Darry Beckwith, LB, LSU might be hurt...I did not see him yesterday.

- I'm still not sold on Louis Murphy.

- Brandon LeFell is a far better propect than Demetrius Byrd. In fact, when it's all said and done, LeFell could end up as the best WR to come out of LSU in the recent past.