NFL Draft Big Board: Top 100 Post Senior Bowl

Senior Bowl week was awesome as we got to see some excellent standout players shine and others we weren’t familiar with take the big stage. Projected first round picks like Justin Herbert, Javon Kinlaw and Terrell Lewis showed up. Unheralded prospects like Kyle Dugger, Ben Bartch and Dane Jackson showed they were more than ready for the NFL. Overall, it was a great opportunity to evaluate these players in a different setting and see them put to the test against many others they are competing against to be drafted.

Between the College Football Playoff, East-West Shrine Bowl and Senior Bowl, a lot has changed since my last big board. While there are still plenty of questions left following the week, we now have a much better sense for where each player stands heading into the combine. There will be plenty more to learn and dissect following week-long event, but as we stand, here is my latest top 100 prospects.

  1. Ohio State LogoChase Young, EDGE, Ohio State
    Unquestionably the best prospect in the draft. About as polished as you could hope for as a pass rusher entering the league. Young does an excellent job against the run as well.
  2. Ohio State LogoJeff Okudah, CB, Ohio State
    The more I watch Jeff Okudah, the more I love what I see. He mirrors receivers so well and shows excellent closing speed to disrupt passes. He seals it with being a proven tackler as well.
  3. Alabama LogoJerry Jeudy, WR, Alabama
    This is one of, if not the best receiver class ever. It is headlined by Jerry Jeudy, who has showcased the speed, ability to separate and awareness to be an elite NFL receiver. He has had a few drops, but it looks like a fixable problem.
  4. Clemson LogoIsaiah Simmons, LB/S, Clemson
    You could start Isaiah Simmons in a lot of places. He could be an excellent off-ball linebacker or a ball hawking safety. His speed, instincts and football IQ make him an elite defensive prospect.
  5. LSU LogoJoe Burrow, QB, LSU
    After an incredible senior season, Joe Burrow will likely be the first overall pick. He has incredible mobility and excels at making plays outside the pocket. He doesn’t have the strongest arm, but he can still make plays down the field. His intermediate accuracy is scary good.
  6. Oklahoma LogoCeeDee Lamb, WR, Oklahoma
    If you want a player who can make something out of seemingly nothing, CeeDee Lamb is for you. Put on the film against Texas and you will see him simply willing himself to the end zone. He will have to prove he can generate separation at the next level, but his playmaking skill makes him an immediate starter.
  7. iowa_wordmarkA.J. Epenesa, EDGE, Iowa
    I list A.J. Epenesa as an edge player, but he could also kick inside as a five technique tackle. That versatility makes him an intriguing option for any team needing a disruptive defensive linemen. He played exceptionally well over his final few college games.
  8. Alabama LogoTua Tagovailoa, QB, Alabama
    Were it not for the injury, Tua Tagovailoa would push Joe Burrow for the top quarterback taken in 2020. As it stands, there are major red flags regarding Tua’s durability. When healthy, he reminds many of a southpaw Drew Brees.
  9. Georgia LogoAndrew Thomas, OT, Georgia
    When you turn on tape of Andrew Thomas, you see someone with the power to be an high-level starter in the pros. He struggles at times with speed rushers, but he has the frame and technique to start right away.
  10. Alabama LogoHenry Ruggs, WR, Alabama
    Meet the fastest player in this draft. One of the most exciting things about the upcoming combine will be if Henry Ruggs threatens the 40-yard dash record. He is a complete receiver and decent size given his explosiveness.
  11. Auburn_Tigers_logoDerrick Brown, DL, Auburn
    I’m not as high on Derrick Brown as most. He has shown flashes of being a game-wrecker, but he is too inconsistent as a pass rusher for me. However, he might be the best interior lineman against the run in this class.
  12. South Carolina logoJavon Kinlaw, DL, South Carolina
    Javon Kinlaw essentially ran unchecked through Mobile. He bolstered what already an impressive draft stock and proved he is a great interior rusher. If he measures well at the combine and shows some good agility in the three cone drill, he could move ahead of Brown.
  13. Clemson LogoTee Higgins, WR, Clemson
    The biggest knock on Tee Higgins is his inability to separate. I think that has been overblown and his catch radius show limit those concerns anyway. There might not be a better jump ball player in this draft.
  14. iowa_wordmarkTristan Wirfs, OL, Iowa
    I think Tristan Wirfs projects best as an interior lineman, but he does have some experience at both tackle positions. He moves well for a player his size. He is a more polished version of Mekhi Becton.
  15. Alabama LogoJedrick Wills, OT, Alabama
    While he might not be as physically imposing as the other tackles projected in the first round, Jedrick Wills is the best pass blocker of the bunch. He isn’t a mauler, but he is technically sound and pro ready.
  16. Ohio State LogoJ.K. Dobbins, RB, Ohio State
    Few running backs have the blend of speed and power J.K. Dobbins possesses. He will likely go a lot later than this on draft day, but he is that talented. Position value will just cause him to slide.
  17. Oklahoma LogoKenneth Murray, LB, Oklahoma
    The NFL continues to trend towards smaller, faster linebackers. Kenneth Murray fits the mold of the new prototype. His speed alone makes him an impact player. He wraps up well and with a little refining in coverage, he should be a three-down player.
  18. colorado_buffaloes_alternate_logoLaviska Shenault Jr., WR, Colorado
    Laviska Shenault gets lost in the shuffle of the big name receivers in this draft. Prior to a banged up 2019 season, Shenault dominated the Pac-12 in 2018. He is athletic and has some interesting positional diversity. Colorado used him as a wildcat quarterback just to get the ball in his hands more.
  19. LSU LogoJustin Jefferson, WR, LSU
    No player benefited more from Joe Burrow’s Heisman season than Justin Jefferson. He thrust himself into the first round conversation with an incredible statistical season. He has the size and physical skills to be a No. 1 receiver in the NFL.
  20. Oregon logoJustin Herbert, QB, Oregon
    There are still some questions regarding Justin Herbert, but he showed he could be a leader at the Senior Bowl. He showcased his arm talent once again. His mobility makes him a dynamic option who could develop into a Pro Bowl level quarterback.
  21. Wisconsin logoTyler Biadasz, OL, Wisconsin
    Teams looking for a plug and play center will be doing their homework on Tyler Biadasz. He is a grinder and has put together some excellent tape. He had hip surgery at the end of the year, which is certainly a red flag. How he tests at the combine could solidify his first round status or drop him out of the top 50.
  22. Penn State logoYetur Gross-Matos, EDGE, Penn State
    Yetur Gross-Matos put together another solid season following an impressive 2018 campaign. He has the size to play as a 4-3 or a 3-4 outside linebacker. He should be a situational pass rusher from Day 1.
  23. LSU LogoGrant Delpit, S, LSU
    In terms of diagnosing plays and putting himself in position to succeed, Grant Delpit is a great player. He struggles to always make those plays though. A clear inability to wrap up showed up on film this year and he needs to improve his angles downfield.
  24. LSU LogoKristian Fulton, CB, LSU
    Often overshadowed by Derrick Stingley Jr., Kristian Fulton has the physical tools to develop into a No. 1 corner. He tracks the ball well in the air and will make some plays in coverage. He still has to iron out some inconsistencies and show he can handle the pressure of being picked on.
  25. Alabama LogoXavier McKinney, S, Alabama
    For teams looking for an aggressive safety, Xavier McKinney checks a lot of the desired boxes. He measures in well and he can play up near the line. He is comfortable stepping into the slot occasionally as well.
  26. Louisville logoMekhi Becton, OT, LouisvilleMekhi Becton is a behemoth. He is 6’7″ and roughly 365 pounds. His power in absolutely incredible. He is also incredibly raw. His potential is huge, but he definitely needs a decent amount of work before he can be trusted as a starter.
  27. Alabama LogoTerrell Lewis, EDGE, Alabama
    After a solid week in Mobile, Terrell Lewis is showing some depth to his game in addition to just being a pass rusher. He played some off-ball linebacker and flashed his athleticism. Testing well could see him crack the top 20.
  28. Florida logoCJ Henderson, CB, Florida
    At times, CJ Henderson looks ready to make the jump. At others, Henderson can look overmatched and out of position. He breaks well on the ball and uses his hands well to break up passes. He needs to improve his press coverage.
  29. Georgia LogoD’Andre Swift, RB, Georgia
    The hype around Georgia’s offense dipped in the second half of the year. Word is injury slowed down D’Andre Swift during the drop off. I want to see him compete at full health at the combine to see how dynamic he can truly be.
  30. Utah_Utes_logoBradlee Anae, EDGE, Utah
    This is my biggest draft crush at this point. Bradlee Anae jumped out on tape over the past month of the season and dominated the Senior Bowl. He showed out in the game and has a first round grade from me at the moment.
  31. LSU LogoK’Lavon Chaisson, EDGE, LSU
    As a pass rusher, K’Lavon Chaisson is a speed rusher with decent power. The thing that bothers me is how bad he is against the run. He never keeps contain and does not bring down runners.
  32. USC logoMichael Pittman, WR, USC
    Another Senior Bowl standout here. He sat out Saturday’s game with an ankle injury, but he balled out in practice. Michael Pittman lacks blazing speed, but he can still separate and projects as an excellent possession receiver.
  33. 800px-virginia_cavaliers_wordmarkBryce Hall, CB, Virginia
    Prior to ankle injury, Bryce Hall was playing like a first round pick for Virginia. If he can get healthy by the combine, he could work his way back into the first round.
  34. Alabama LogoTrevon Diggs, CB, Alabama
    Trevon Diggs has the size and speed that NFL teams love. However, he has some rough games on film. There were a lot of corner torched by LSU, but it still shows Diggs has some growing to do.
  35. 350px-utah_state_aggies_logo.svg_Jordan Love, QB, Utah State
    One of the most controversial prospects in this class, I think Jordan Love would be an excellent value in the late first round or early second round. His arm talent is impressive. His decision making and inability to move through his reads is concerning.
  36. Oklahoma LogoNeville Gallimore, DL, Oklahoma
    Few players bring the type of savvy Neville Gallimore has. He should be a high floor, starting option early in his career. He looked sharp during Senior Bowl week.
  37. LSU LogoPatrick Queen, LB, LSU
    I still have a lot more film to break down on Patrick Queen after expecting him to return to school for most of the year. While I think he is currently being overhyped, showing up on a big stage is promising.
  38. logo_of_university_of_houston_athleticsJosh Jones, OT, Houston
    One of the clear winners from Senior Bowl week, Josh Jones is now generating first round buzz. He solidifies himself in that second tier of tackles. His potential and grit are enticing.
  39. 237px-arizona_state_sun_devils_baseball_logo.svg_Brandon Aiyuk, WR, Arizona State
    Unfortunately, Brandon Aiyuk was forced to sit out of Senior Bowl week with an injury. His production from his senior year has some talking about him being a first round pick. He gets vertical and stacks defensive backs well to make big plays downfield.
  40. 1280px-boise_state_22b22_logo.svg_Curtis Weaver, EDGE, Boise State
    One of the most consistent players in college football over the past three years, Curtis Weaver finished his junior year with 13.5 sacks and a career total 34. I’m eager to see him at the combine.
  41. 250px-tcu_horned_frogs_logo.svg_Jalen Reagor, WR, TCU
    Speedy playmakers that play above the rim are a commodity. Jalen Reagor had a dominant 2018 season before taking a step back this year. If he can clean up the drops at the combine, he should have enough physical skill to standout in a loaded draft class.
  42. Wisconsin logoZach Baun, LB, Wisconsin
    Zach Baun completely changed the scouting report on himself during Senior Bowl week. After spending his time as Wisconsin as an edge rusher, he showed his versatility and coachability by moving to linebacker. He could draw first round interest.
  43. 300px-california_golden_bears_logo.svg_Ashtyn Davis, S, California
    As a track star at California, Ashtyn Davis could stand out at the combine. He missed out on the Senior Bowl with an injury. He still has some questions to answer about his ability to cover at the next level.
  44. Notre Dame LogoJulian Okwara, EDGE, Notre Dame
    After wrapping a solid if unspectacular career at Notre Dame, Julian Okwara is a player capable of making an early impact. He failed to take a step forward during his senior year, but he has some potential to develop into a consistent pass rusher.
  45. 250px-tcu_horned_frogs_logo.svg_Ross Blacklock, DL, TCU
    I am still in the early stages of breaking down film on Ross Blacklock. He has great size and holds his position well. More to come on him.
  46. USC logoAustin Jackson, OT, USC
    Prior to his bowl game, there was some first round hype around Austin Jackson. That died down after he struggled to keep up with A.J. Epenesa. He has the physical tools to develop into a starting left tackle.
  47. Wisconsin logoJonathan Taylor, RB, Wisconsin
    From a talent perspective, Jonathan Taylor is near the top of the class. However, he has a ton of mileage on his legs and issues with fumbling. That makes it harder to justify picking him.
  48. MichiganWolverinesDonovan Peoples-Jones, WR, Michigan
    It is becoming more and more apparent that his lack of production was likely linked to Shea Patterson. He should be an intriguing option to improve in a new offense.
  49. Notre Dame LogoCole Kmet, TE, Notre Dame
    I am still working on catching up on Cole Kmet film after he changed his draft decision. He shows good hands and has the size NFL teams want at the position.
  50. 212px-temple_t_logo.svg_Matt Hennessy, OL, Temple
    Matt Hennessey won’t overwhelm anyone with his power, but he fits well into any zone scheme. He has no problem sprinting out on reach blocks and picking up players in the second level.
  51. 250px-tcu_horned_frogs_logo.svg_Jeff Gladney, CB, TCU
    He doesn’t jump off the page from a measurable or statistical standpoint, but Jeff Gladney is consistent and crafty. He understands how to position himself well to make plays. Would love to see him come up with a few more interceptions.
  52. MichiganWolverinesCesar Ruiz, OL, Michigan
    Projects as a starting center at the next level. Cesar Ruiz has the size you want for an interior linemen.
  53. Clemson LogoJohn Simpson, G, Clemson
    About as battle tested as they come. John Simpson played in back to back championship games and help up well against some very good competition.
  54. Auburn_Tigers_logoMarlon Davidson, DL, Auburn
    I am still a little uncertain what Marlon Davidson’s best fit in the NFL will be. He lined up all over the place for Auburn. That type of versatility is something to work with.
  55. Penn State logoKJ Hamler, WR, Penn State
    I am much lower on the Penn State speedster than most. I don’t see KJ Hamler as being much more than an average slot receiver. His speed is his best quality.
  56. Auburn_Tigers_logoPrince Tega Wangho, OT, Auburn
    He was put through the ringer at times blocking in the SEC. He still has some room to grow, but I like his ability in pass protection.
  57. Florida logoJonathan Greenard, EDGE, Florida
    He isn’t too flashy, but he works hard and understands his assignments. Greenard made a good impression after transferring from Louisville to Florida.
  58. Ohio State LogoMalik Harrison, LB, Ohio State
    A downhill playmaker, Malik Harrison is a fun prospect. He made a lot of disruptive plays. He still has to grow as a block shedder and coverage option.
  59. LSU LogoLloyd Cushenberry, OL, LSU
    He struggled through the College Football Playoff, but put together a solid week in Mobile. He has some plug and play potential.
  60. Ohio State LogoDamon Arnette, CB, Ohio State
    Clearly not as well known as Ohio State’s other corners, Damon Arnette played a solid final game of his college career. He can press well and could develop into an outside option.
  61. Utah_Utes_logoLeki Fotu, DL, Utah
    He is a massive man playing in the middle of defensive lines. He has an excellent burst off the line as a pass rusher. He has a ways to go with his technique and stamina.
  62. Washington Huskies logoJacob Eason, QB, Washington
    The strong-arm quarterback from Washington has more questions than answers. His lack of mobility is concerning, but Jacob Eason’s arm talent should see him go on Day 2.
  63. Oregon logoTroy Dye, LB, Oregon
    A tough and fast linebacker, Troy Dye is a bit undersized even by today’s expectations. He fights through traffic well, but needs to up his play strength.
  64. vanderbilt_commodoresJared Pickney, TE, Vanderbilt
    Jared Pickney is the most well-rounded tight end in this class. He is a solid blocker and showed his chops as a pass catcher. His play is consistently above average.
  65. MichiganWolverinesJosh Uche, EDGE, Michigan
    Much like Bradlee Anae, Josh Uche had an excellent showing at the Senior Bowl. He showed his speed off the edge consistently. Uche hasn’t shown a whole lot of other ways he can win though.
  66. Alabama LogoRaekwon Davis, DL, Alabama
    From a traits perspective, Raekwon Davis checks every box. From a production and reliability standpoint, Davis has been a did. He has gone backwards in his final two years at Alabama.
  67. LSU LogoClyde Edwards-Helaire, RB, LSU
    Maurice Jones-Drew 2.0 showcased his bruising running style en route to a national title. Clyde Edwards-Helaire can catch the ball out of the backfield as well. His top speed is average at best, but he has a clear role to play.
  68. Baylor logoDenzel Mims, WR, Baylor
    Part of Baylor’s surprising resurgence this season, Denzel Mims proved he is a playmaker. He has excellent body control and seems to be improving as a route runner.
  69. 320px-dayton_flyers_winged-d_logo_redAdam Trautman, TE, Dayton
    Another riser from Senior Bowl week, Adam Trautman showed off some solid hands and decent blocking skills. He made some ground in this sheepish tight end group.
  70. MichiganWolverinesBen Bredeson, G, Michigan
    Ben Bredeson had an uneven week in Mobile, with a couple of poor reps in 1-on-1 drills. However, he also flashed some solid technique and could develop into a quality option.
  71. Texas A&M logoJustin Manduibuike, DL, Texas A&M
    He showed up on tape for Texas A&M right away. He is relentless in his pursuit, but needs to improve at reading his keys.
  72. Texas_Longhorns_logoDevin Duvernay, WR, Texas
    Pretty much every receiver had a good week in Mobile, but I am really starting to like Devin Duvernay. He looks like a quality slot receiver with good route running ability. His film over Texas’ final few games is impressive.
  73. 176px-purdue_boilermakers_logo.svg_Brycen Hopkins, TE, Purdue
    My assessment of Brycen Hopkins is still very incomplete. At times, he looks like the best tight end in this draft. At others, he looks like a backup at best.
  74. uconn_logo1Matt Peart, OT, UConn
    Matt Peart might be the best of the project tackles in this class. His size and length make him a fun prospect to work with.
  75. Georgia LogoJake Fromm, QB, Georgia
    A lack of arm strength limits Jake Fromm’s upside. He is very cerebral and poised, but lacks the zip to hit tight windows or stretch the field.
  76. Auburn_Tigers_logoNoah Igbinoghene, CB, Auburn
    He is starting to generate some buzz. When I watch him, I see good speed and excellent use of the sideline to help him in coverage, limiting the space for receivers. He still has some work to do with his technique.
  77. Washington Huskies logoTrey Adams, OT, Washington
    When totally healthy, Trey Adams should be in the conversation with Josh Jones and Austin Jackson. A checkered injury history and shaky movement skills knock him down a lot.
  78. 250px-tcu_horned_frogs_logo.svg_Lucas Niang, OT, TCU
    Projecting as a right tackle, Lucas Niang has the size you want. He is pretty powerful, but still underdeveloped. He missed most of the year with an injury.
  79. redraiderlogoJordyn Brooks, LB, Texas Tech
    This is someone I could see rising up my board. He has good speed and can run with backs out of the backfield. He is smart with how he attacks opposing quarterbacks.
  80. Utah_Utes_logoJaylon Johnson, CB, Utah
    While he has some better moments, it is hard for me to get past the film against USC. Jaylon Johnson has no interest as a tackler and is still developing in coverage.
  81. Florida State LogoCam Akers, RB, Florida State
    Cam Akers is the type of player you can expect to improve in the NFL after getting out of that terrible Florida State offense. He should carve out a role early on with some potential to take over as a starter down the line.
  82. Michigan State logoKenny Willekes, EDGE, Michigan State
    He won’t wow you with his athleticism, but he grinds down opposing offensive linemen and finds way to be productive. Kenny Willekes could end up being a steal.
  83. 1000px-mississippi_state_bulldogs_logo.svg_Cameron Dantzler, CB, Mississippi State
    As a proven tackler, Cameron Dantzler will be on some teams boards for that reason alone. If he can refine his approach as a man corner, he will turn into a quality corner.
  84. Ohio State LogoKJ Hill, WR, Ohio State
    KJ Hill had an excellent week in Mobile, showing his route running ability. He still needs to work on generating separation earlier in his routes, but he is crafty.
  85. Clemson LogoA.J. Terrell, CB, Clemson
    What is the opposite of recency bias? A.J. Terrell got torched in a variety of ways in the national championship game. He is definitely a project player with some upside.
  86. 300px-california_golden_bears_logo.svg_Evan Weaver, LB, Cal
    Evan Weaver led the country in tackles this year. He has a nose for the football and contributes on special teams.
  87. Notre Dame LogoChase Claypool, WR, Notre Dame
    With teams looking to find red zone specialists, Chase Claypool should draw some interest. He has a big body and adjusts well to balls in the air.
  88. Ben Bartch, OT, St. John’s
    He came out to play with the big boys and did not disappoint. Ben Bartch has a steep learning curve ahead, but looks like a future starting tackle.
  89. Notre Dame LogoTroy Pride Jr., CB, Notre Dame
    As far as speed goes, Troy Pride showed at the Senior Bowl that he can run with anyone. Someone will take a chance on him with the hope of developing the rest of his game.
  90. Alabama LogoAnfernee Jennings, LB, Alabama
    I was surprised to see Anfernee Jennings listed as an inside linebacker on the Senior Bowl roster. I’m not sure how much upside I really see in a position switch for him.
  91. 320px-pittpanthersDane Jackson, CB, Pittsburgh
    He might not go to a small school, but Dane Jackson still came from way off the radar with his performance in Mobile. He made a really positive impression that is going to force me to watch some film on him.
  92. Florida logoVan Jefferson, WR, Florida
    This is much more of a traits thing than anything else. Van Jefferson didn’t have elite college production, but he showed in Mobile that he can make contested catches and find ways to create a window for quarterbacks to throw into.
  93. 1000px-north_carolina_state_university_athletic_logo.svg_Larrell Murchison, DL, NC State
    NC State seems to produce solid defensive linemen every year. Larrell Murchison should just continue the trend. He had a decent Senior Bowl week. I will be revisiting his film before the combine.
  94. 512px-oklahoma_state_university_athletics_logo_28four_colors29.svg_A.J. Green, CB, Oklahoma State
    Not to be confused with the injured Bengals receiver, A.J. Green made a name for himself at the Senior Bowl. He rose to the challenge of facing the incredible receivers in attendance and fared well.
  95. Kyle Dugger, S, Lenoir Rhyne
    I don’t even know where Lenoir Rhyne, but I can tell you Kyle Dugger is an NFL-caliber player. He had some really nice moments in Mobile and acclimated nicely to the speed.
  96. Baylor logoJames Lynch, DL, Baylor
    After a fantastic season where he was named Big 12 defensive player of the year, James Lynch still seems like a mid round player. His production was impressive, but his upside and measurables are less so.
  97. Kentucky logoLogan Stenberg, G, Kentucky
    He didn’t stand out as much during Senior Bowl week, but he did nothing to hurt his stock. Logan Stenberg has some solid film in the SEC to fall back on.
  98. Washington Huskies logoNick Harris, C, Washington
    Pretty much everyone I have talked about had a good week in Mobile. Nick Harris did not. He got bullied in 1-on-1 drills. His tape is more promising, but this exposed some clear weaknesses.
  99. Georgia LogoIsaiah Wilson, OT, Georgia
    The other Georgia offensive tackle, Isaiah Wilson is all about his traits. He has the size and frame to develop into a starting option. He faced good competition, but he never stood out.
  100. 237px-arizona_state_sun_devils_baseball_logo.svg_Eno Benjamin, RB, Arizona State
    Eno Benjamin is a shifty running back I could see rising up boards at the combine. He played on a middling Arizona State team that didn’t get much press. He could start to work his way into the top five conversation with a good showing in Indianapolis.

    For more NFL Draft coverage, check out the Aftermath’s NFL Draft Podcast, with new episodes every Thursday.

NFL Draft Podcast – Senior Bowl preview, East-West Shrine Bowl recap and Travis Etienne

It is suddenly very busy in the build up for the 2020 NFL draft. Dozens of seniors, scouts and coaches have descended on Mobile, Alabama for the Senior Bowl. I break down the players to watch at each position. Plus, catch up on the East-West Shrine Bowl and I discuss the impact of Travis Etienne’s decision to return to school. Listen to the latest episode now on Spotify, Apple Podcasts or wherever you get your podcasts. https://anchor.fm/theaftermath

Players to watch in the East-West Shrine Bowl

It’s time to get this pre-draft process truly underway. The East-West Shrine Bowl is an excellent opportunity to begin scouting players more in depth. Most of these players won’t hear their name called on Day 1 or maybe even Day 2, but there are always a few players who climb up draft boards with their performances in this game and the Senior Bowl. In 2018, Chase Edmonds, Phillip Lindsay, DaeSean Hamilton and Poona Ford all featured. 2019 had Cody Barton, David Blough and Jesper Horsted. These aren’t the stars of the draft, but plenty of these guys will be Day 3 picks come April. Additionally, the talk is this year’s roster is much better than last year’s.

Looking at this group, the offensive line group is particularly impressive. There are a few players I have third and fourth round grades on at this point set to play, including Calvin Throckmorton, Jack Driscol and Darryl Williams. Here are the players worth keeping an eye on Saturday January 18, at 3 pm on NFL Network.

Jack Driscol, OT, Auburn (6’5″, 296 lbs)
Driscol started all year at right tackle for Auburn. He would probably be best suited to stay on that side or even kick inside in the NFL. He has the length, but he will likely need to bulk up a little bit once he gets drafted. His movement skills have already been on display this week at practice.

Darryl Williams, C, Mississippi State (6’3″ 310 lbs)
Another lineman who started for an SEC school in need of some gym time here with Darryl Williams. His is technically sound, but definitely needs to improve his play strength. This is really clear in the run game because he doesn’t often generate a ton of drive off the line. Buzz at practice this week is he is looking stronger already.

Charlie Heck, OT, UNC (6’8″, 315 lbs)
This is a name I have seen popping up in mock drafts more frequently. Charlie Heck undoubtedly has the size to play tackle in the pros, but he flew under the radar a bit at UNC. His hand usage is pretty good and he actually held up pretty well when he played Clemson. A good showing here could push him up a lot of boards. He has NFL pedigree as well as his dad Andy was a former first round pick.

Shyheim Carter, S, Alabama (6’0″, 191 lbs)
He is nowhere near as polished or talented as his Crimson Tide counterpart Xavier McKinney, but Shyheim Carter could be a sleeper in this draft. He moved around a lot in the Alabama defense, showing some nice versatility. He might not be an immediate starter, but he could end up being a solid depth player right away.

Michael Divinity II, LB, LSU (6’2″, 242 lbs)
No one has had a more interesting season than Michael Divinity. Between academic issues and team rules violations, Divinity missed a solid chunk of LSU’s late-season games. However, he was cleared to play in the national championship game. He has the prototypical size of an NFL linebacker. He is talented enough to play in the NFL, where academic issues won’t follow him. Any team misconduct will be something teams will address during the combine.

Shaquille Quarterman, LB, Miami (6’1″, 241 lbs)
This was not the season expected of Miami entering the year. Shaq Quarterman and the defense were solid though despite the disappointing record. He topped 100 total tackles and showed flashes of playmaking ability. Size shouldn’t be a problem, so if he can play sideline to sideline again, he should be in good shape.

Alex Highsmith, EDGE, Charlotte (6’4″, 242 lbs)
Here is the list of players with more sacks than Alex Highsmith this season: Chase Young and Gregory Rosseau, potentially the top two edge players selected in the 2020 and 2021 NFL drafts. Highsmith obviously did it against much weaker competition. He will need to get stronger to truly compete in the NFL, but he reads his keys and has a good number of pass rush moves to go to.

Tavien Feaster, RB, South Carolina (6’2″, 221 lbs)
The former Clemson running back stayed in state and moved to the SEC. He likely fits as a complementary back at the next level, but he has some receiving work under his belt as well. He could be an interesting Day 3 prospect. His size could have teams interested in using him as a short yardage option.

Malcolm Perry, WR, Navy (5’9″, 190 lbs)
Malcolm Perry bounced all over the place at Navy and finally landed at quarterback. He mostly ran the ball for the Midshipmen, but this week, he will get a chance to show off his receiver skills. He could be a late-round flyer teams hope to develop into a receiver. The athleticism is definitely there. Reports are he has looked fairly comfortable this week running his routes. I’m excited to see how he handles this new role in a game.

Calvin Throckmorton, OT, Oregon (6’5″, 309)
Calvin Throckmorton was part of one of the best offensive lines in college football this year. He played right tackle, but his size could lead him to a future at guard in the NFL. He played all over the place in 2018, starting at every position but left guard. He will find a home somewhere and his versatility could make him appealing for teams looking to fill multiple depth positions with one player.

Binjimin Victor, WR, Ohio State (6’4″, 199 lbs)
Despite not getting as much press as the receivers that came before him Terry McLaurin and Parris Campbell, Binjimin Victor seems ready to stand out. His size and speed make him intriguing. Word is that he has impressed this week in practice as well. He likely won’t go before Day 3, but he could have an early impact.

Yasir Durant, OT, Missouri (6’7″, 330 lbs)
Entering this process as a massive prospect, Yasir Durant is a wild card in this tackle class. He started the past two years for Missouri at left tackle and put together some decent tape. The hype around Missouri died down without Drew Lock, but Durant’s size should be enough to keep teams interested. Some solid work here could help him be a mid-round selection.

Levante Bellamy, RB, Western Michigan (5’9″, 190 lbs)
One of my favorite sleepers in this year’s draft, Levante Bellamy is explosive. He was a great playmaker for Western Michigan this year. He is a bit undersized, but his speed should help him turn some heads. If given the right opportunity to shine here, he could find a home in the later rounds.

Kelly Bryant, QB, Missouri (6’3″, 225 lbs)
Two years ago, he was starting in the national title game. Now Kelly Bryant is hoping he can do enough to convince an NFL team to give him a chance. His mobility has never been an issue, but his accuracy and mechanics are questionable. He is one of the biggest profile players in Florida based on name-recognition. People will be talking if he can show some improvements.

Jon Runyan Jr., OT, Michigan (6’5″, 321 lbs)
Another offensive tackle to add to the mix. Jon Runyan, son of former Washington offensive tackle Jon Runyan, has reportedly looked solid all week at practice. He is very fundamentally sound and clearly understands how to play the position. If he can show some nastiness and consistency, his physical tools should he enough to pique someone’s interest.

Diondre Overton, WR, Clemson (6’4″, 210 lbs)
A late arriver after the Clemson-LSU game, Diondre Overton made an instant impression on Wednesday with one of the catches of the week. He had to play behind some really talented receivers at Clemson. I am excited to see how he does in a more prevalent position here. He is a big body target with production in the red zone. He could fit a role right away in the NFL.

For more NFL Draft coverage, check out the Aftermath’s NFL Draft Podcast, with new episodes every Thursday.

NFL Draft Podcast – CFP review and East-West Shrine Bowl preview

College football season wrapped up on Monday night and now it’s time to focus on the NFL draft. I am breaking down the best and worst performances from the CFP final and discussing the latest draft prospect decisions. Plus, find out which players you should be watching during the upcoming East-West Shrine Bowl. Listen to the latest episode now on Spotify, Apple Podcasts or wherever you get your podcasts.

Biggest risers and fallers of bowl season

Is it just me, or does it feel like conference championship games were forever ago? Bowl season was a long slog, but we made it out the other side. Our patience was rewarded with an entertaining, if not always super competitive, College Football Playoff. While some of these bowl games certainly felt pointless, it is an excellent opportunity for players to put together game tape in front of a national audience heading into the pre-draft process. Unfortunately, it also means some players will walk away with a less-than-stellar end to their season and potentially tank their draft stock. It’s hard to blame some of the top prospects for skipping these games.

With bowl season done though, it is time to review the big risers and fallers from the past month. Before you get on me about players like Jerry Jeudy or Joe Burrow, they obviously played great games. However, their draft stock is pretty well cemented. There really isn’t a whole lot higher they could possibly climb. Let’s take a look at some players whose bowl performances made a real difference in their draft stock.

Risers

A.J. Epenesa, EDGE, Iowa
A.J. Epenesa capped off a huge second half to the season with a dominant showing in the Holiday Bowl. Going up against a likely top-50 pick in Austin Jackson, Epenesa consistently got pressure, often times in different ways. He showed a wide array of pass rush moves and good burst off the edge. I think he should find himself in the top 10 come draft day, but there is a lot to happen between now and then. He will definitely be in the draft after declaring on Tuesday.

Clyde Edwards-Helaire, RB, LSU
Man this kid can run. I’ve been saying he reminds me of Maurice Jones-Drew. Some of that is size profile, but Clyde Edwards-Helaire also brings that same kind of elusiveness mixed with power. He definitely lacks breakaway speed, but he could he effective in the right offense. With Chuba Hubbard and Najee Harris returning to school, he is now up to RB5 and I thinking solidly into the Day 2 conversation. I’m worried his stock will dip if he doesn’t run super well at the combine, but he should develop into a starter in the NFL.

Bradlee Anae, EDGE, Utah
I have loved what I have seen from Bradlee Anae over the past few months. He has incredible burst and timing off the edge and actually does a decent job setting the edge against the run. He still has a long way to go in terms of disengaging bigger blockers and varying up his pass rush moves. From a physical traits stand point, he has what teams want. That was on display against Texas, even if it doesn’t show in the box score. He finished with half a sack, but had a bigger presence than that.

Chase Claypool, WR, Notre Dame
Chase Claypool balled out against Iowa State in the Camping World Bowl. He showed a good ability to go up and make plays in traffic. His body control was impressive. His size is great too and you can’t coach that. Claypool sits behind a long list of guys right now on my big board because of how stacked this draft class is at the receiver, but his tape left a very positive impression heading into the Senior Bowl.

Tyler Johnson, WR, Minnesota
I was resistant to putting Tyler Johnson here because I have heard so many mixed reviews, but wow he balled out against Auburn. I went back to rewatch the tape of Marlon Davidson and Johnson stood out every time. He showcased great athleticism and an impressive ability to adjust to the ball in the air on a few spectacular catches. I know there are scouts who are knocking him down because he didn’t get a Senior Bowl invite, but he looked the part of an NFL receiver in the Outback Bowl.

Fallers

Jalen Hurts, QB, Oklahoma
That was a really tough way for Jalen Hurts’ college career to end. Hurts simply looked inaccurate against LSU in the CFP semifinal. He showed out as a runner, but he is built more like Tim Tebow than Lamar Jackson. The truth is, Hurts reminds me of Tebow, but with slightly better mechanics. He lacks great arm strength, often times having to float balls over the middle, rather than hitting receivers on a line. We will see Hurts as part of a loaded quarterback group at the Senior Bowl though, so maybe he can start to rehab his value.

A.J. Terrell, CB, Clemson
You had to know this was coming. His last game was brutal. A.J. Terrell got smoked by JaMarr Chase. Chase has made a lot of defenders look foolish this year, but Terrell looked was completely overmatched. He showed he does not have the top line speed to run with top-end receivers or the physicality to make up for that. This might force him to go back to school for another year; he is just a junior. If he does come out, I expect him to be a fringe second round player at this point.

Austin Jackson, OT, USC
The reason why Austin Jackson is on this list is because A.J. Epenesa is one of the risers. Jackson got a big test facing the Iowa edge rusher. I actually pegged him as one of the players who could help his draft stock the most given the opportunity. I think to say he failed is extreme, but he also didn’t pass with flying colors either. There were moments where he flashed franchise tackle potential. I think it is going to take some good coaching and a bit more seasoning for him to get up to NFL speed for him to reach his ceiling. Jackson might still find his way into the first round, but should not be thought of as a day-one starter.

Marlon Davidson, EDGE, Auburn
Auburn got pushed around a bit in the Outback Bowl by Minnesota. Marlon Davidson was no exception. He was undisciplined against the run a lot in that game. He didn’t make much of a mark as a pass rusher either. Auburn likes to kick him inside next to Derrick Brown. I see him as more of a 3-4 or 4-3 end, but he will need to improve his gap discipline and work on reading his keys before he can make an impact at the next level.

Raekwon Davis, DL, Alabama
The athleticism is there. The frame is there. The production and presence are not. Raekwon Davis flashed some moments of creating good leverage, but he spent much of the game simply locked up and ineffective. He looks like a project player who has the physical tools to develop into something special. The problem is, he has looked like that for two years, failing to take the next step. Alabama’s Citrus Bowl win over Michigan was just the latest example.

For more NFL Draft coverage, check out the Aftermath’s NFL Draft Podcast, with new episodes every Thursday.