2015 draft evals: Offensive prospects 126-150

2015 draft evals: Offensive prospects 126-150

Evaluations of the top 150 offensive prospects for the 2015 draft kick off with players ranked 126-150.

With a record number of underclassmen declaring for the 2014 NFL Draft, the senior class returning for the 2014 college football season seems to be lacking in an abundance of talent. Fortunately, the junior class has quite a few players that can make the 2015 draft again rich in depth, if those expected to declare actually follow through with that decision.

Summertime is “no rest for the weary” where scouting is concerned, as most talent evaluators begin preparing for the upcoming season, writing up preliminary reports and watching caches of game film before they embark on their numerous road trips.

Below is the kickoff of our “Power Ratings Poll.” This report ranks select third-year sophomores and juniors, along with the graduating senior class from the offensive side of the ball. To follow the PRO category (scouting grade used to evaluate the player’s pro projection only) and RND category (preliminary projection of what round the player might be selected), please refer to our ratings code chart below.

Today, we present the players ranked 126-150 on the offensive side of the ball to kick off our offensive countdown of the top 150.

RNK PLAYERSCHOOL POSCL HTWT 40-YDPRO RND
126BOYLE, Nicholas DelawareTE Sr06:04.3 2714.7 5.45
Boyle has emerged as one of the nation's top tight ends, leading the CAA and ranking seventh in the nation with 42 catches for 474 yards and seven scores in 2013. His 64 career grabs rank third in school history for a tight end. His offensive lineman-like frame has scouts likening him to former Blue Hen Ben Patrick (Arizona). He knows how to use his size and reach to get a clean push off the jam and is too big for second-level defenders to attempt to try and reroute him. He is best when sitting down underneath, as he has a good feel for finding the soft areas. He does a good job of squaring his shoulders after the catch and has the flexibility to turn and run with the ball. With his size, he excels at framing all of the off-target throws, and he has the body control to catch and run without breaking stride.
127GRONKOWSKI, Glenn Kansas State FBrSo 06:02.4234 4.745.4 5
Rob Gronkowski is in a “league of his own,” but whether he comes out in 2015 or 2016, Glenn has all the ability to join his older brother in the NFL. Used mostly for blocking purposes, he averaged 38.8 yards per reception, turning three of his five grabs into touchdowns. He is powerful enough to serve as a lead blocker from the fullback position, but also has the pass catching radius and reach to be very effective getting to the ball in a crowd. He shows good strength and the vision to locate second-level defenders, attacking them with a thud to be an effective cut blocker. He has the strength to be a very effective position blocker, as he shows the kick slide and foot agility needed for pass protection,
He does a nice job of mirroring speedy edge rushers. He looks for defenders to hit once he neutralizes his first target, and he operates at a low pad level, squaring his shoulders and using his hands to sustain in the rush lanes.
128KESSLER, Cody Southern California QBrJr 06:00.5215 4.955.4 5
Kessler’s emergence last season forced projected starter Matt Wittek to pack his bags and transfer after the 2013 season. The USC passer justified Wittek’s transfer decision by hitting on 65.37 percent of his passes for 2,968 yards, 20 touchdowns and just seven interceptions through three head coaching changes. He has good balance and adequate body control throwing on the move, demonstrating good hip rotation. He has decent foot quickness in his pass set and shows good quick-twitch fibers. The junior has good balance and quickness driving back from center to his pass set point. He is effective throwing on the move from either hash, but not a threat to run with the ball past the line of scrimmage. He shows tight mechanics and sets his feet with good agility and base.
129WILLIAMS, Kasen   Washington WRSr 06:01.5216 4.545.4 6
It appeared that Williams would join other Husky offensive stars and leave for the NFL after last year, but he suffered a lower leg fracture in late October vs. California, missing the rest of the season. He has 142 catches and 13 touchdowns for his career. But, after pulling in 77 balls in 2012, his role was diminished last season, scoring just once on 29 catches in eight contests. He is a smooth and fluid route runner with the loose hips and ability to sink his pads to change direction in an instant. He shows excellent open-field acceleration and knows how to vary his speed to set up the defender. The split end has that low center of gravity that lets him get in and out of his cuts sharply and displays the balance and timing to extend for the ball.
130SHELL, Brandon South Carolina OTrJr 06:05.2323 5.145.4 5
With Shell at right tackle, Corey Robinson at left tackle and A.J. Cann at left guard, the Gamecocks have three viable candidates for All-American honors on their front wall. He generates good hip snap and shows good consistency in reaching and sealing the seven-tech. He has good recovery balance and is rarely on the ground. Even when he comes out of his stance too high, as he has enough athletic ability to maneuver in tight areas. He is also quick to position and can force the chase route when he works his hips and, when he keeps his pad level down, he is good at scooping.
131DIEFFENBACH, Miles George Penn State (OC) OGSr 06:03.7300 5.315.4 5
Whether he lines up at center or left guard, it is crucial that the Nittany Lions rebuilt their front wall around the versatile senior. The problem is, Dieffenbach is coming into fall camp having suffered a knee injury in March, leaving the coaching staff hoping for good news from the medical staff when he returns to campus. He had solidified the line when he stepped into the lineup in 2012 and, in two seasons, collected 20 touchdown-resulting blocks and allowed only two sacks during his last 24 games. The PSU lineman might lack sustained speed, but he shows good balance and short-area explosion to get out in front on sweeps. He demonstrates proper body control and takes good angles stalking second-level defenders. He moves better going straight forward than when shifting laterally, but with his strong anchor, it is very difficult for defenders to bring him down to the ground.
132TOMLINSON, Eric Texas-El Paso TESr 06:05.7261 4.965.4 5
One look at the first-year starter’s frame and he could eventually grow into an offensive tackle. Until then, he is doing everything he can to display his receiving skills, ranking second on the team with 30 receptions for 304 yards in 2013.
He is capable of pushing off the line and getting a clean release, even when facing a physical jam. He has the loose hips to separate after the catch, but sometimes runs right into coverage and has to rely on his leg drive to break tackles. For a player of his size, Newton is surprisingly nimble and agile. He makes precise cuts and knows how to use his frame to leverage vs. the smaller defensive backs. He uses his hands well to keep separation vs. the linebackers and safeties when working underneath.
133ZENNER, Zachary (FB) South Dakota State TBrSr 05:11.2218 4.65.4 5
During the 2013 season, Zenner became only the second player in FCS history to rush for 2,000 yards in two different seasons, tallying 2,015 yards on a school-record 351 carries (5.7 ypc). Zenner’s rushing total ranks second among FCS backs, while his 23 rushing touchdowns rank fourth. He crossed the 100-yard mark in 12 of 14 games and surpassed the 200-yard mark three times. In 2012, he totaled 2,044 yards (6.8 ypc) with 13 scores. He is a strong north-south runner with some slight hip stiffness bouncing out wide, but has the leg drive to break tackles. He has good forward body lean and the proper pad level to drag defenders for extra yardage. He shows good urgency building to top speed with the agility to redirect through the inside holes. He will not explode in the open, but has the balance to punish the opponent upon contact.
134BROWN, Leon (OG) AlabamaOT Sr06:06.1 3485.67 5.46
Rated the second-best offensive tackle in the nation as a sophomore at ASA College in New York, the junior college transfer only appeared in nine games as a reserve during his first season with the Tide in 2013. He will play a vital role as Alabama attempts to rebuild their front wall. After seeing most of his 2013 action at both guard positions, he is scheduled to replace Cyrus Kouandjio at left tackle in 2014. For a player of his size, Stewart shows good pad level and decent quickness coming out of his stance to use his body frame in order to “occupy” defenders with his natural strength. He has shown marked improvement shooting his hands, as he hits defenders with a tremendous thud when taking on opponents that dare to bull rush.
135JOHNSON, Vernon Tex. A&M-Commerce WRSr 05:11.6185 4.475.4 6
The Lone Star Conference Receiver of the Year rewrote the school record book, setting season records for catches (69), receiving yards (1,345), receiving yards per game (134.5) and receiving touchdowns (13). He also emerged as one of the conference's most dangerous returners, averaging 35.2 yards per kickoff return while leading the LSC in receiving yards and all-purpose yards (183.8). He has outstanding foot speed with above-average quickness in his stride. He shows good agility and balance, with very good acceleration, burst, body control and flexibility. One of his best assets at this point is his burst off the line of scrimmage, but sometimes his speed is an impediment, as he still must learn how to gear down, as he tends to outrun the ball, at times.
136LONG, Deon   Maryland WRSr 05:11.3192 4.355.4 6
Long and Stefon Diggs are perhaps the most explosive receiving tandem in the ACC, but both were pretty banged up last year. In mid-October, Diggs broke his right fibula and Long broke the tibia and fibula in his right leg during the Terps' loss to Wake Forest. Both have sub-4.4 speed, with Long having stops at West Virginia, New Mexico and Iowa Western before he put on a Terps’ uniform last year. He finished with 32 catches for 489 yards in seven games in 2013, but was an All-American at Iowa Western in 2012 after snaring 100 balls for 1,625 yards and 25 touchdowns. He has outstanding quickness and good athletic agility, along with the flexibility, burst and acceleration to get behind the defender consistently. He is equally comfortable working on controlled routes and when threatening the deep areas of the secondary. He has good feet and an exciting second gear on the move, as he is quick to turn on the after-burners.
137LUNT, Wes IllinoisQB rSo06:04.1 2154.84 5.45
The Oklahoma State recruit was blocked by the Cowboys’ Mike Gundy when he tried to transfer before the coach gave Lunt a list of 37 schools that he could not join. Head coach Tim Beckman should thank Gundy for not putting the Illini on that list. In the 6-foot-4 Lunt, Beckman has a QB who possesses a great arm - one not seen at Illinois in a while. This spring, the transfer displayed excellent leadership and work ethic. He demonstrated good ability to see the pre-snap look and react. He has the arm strength to thread the ball through traffic and does a nice job of handling progressions to hit the open receiver. He is alert to picking up stunts and blitzes, having the ability to take the hit and complete the hot read with his quick over-the-top release that gets the ball out with good velocity.
138LOVELOCKE, Jerry Prairie View A&M QBrSr 06:04.4244 4.985.3 6
Lovelocke hopes to be the first Panther to complete a pass in an NFL game. The only quarterback ever drafted from the university was Charlie Brackins, a 16th-round selection by the Green Bay Packers in 1955. He appeared in seven games that season, but failed to connect on his only two pass attempts as a professional. The A&M prospect is not a fast ball-carrier but he has valid foot quickness driving from under center and moves around the pocket quite well, getting to his pass-throwing point with good urgency. He possesses above-average throwing mechanics and you can see on game films that his motion is smooth, compact and quick, as he displays a loose and fluid arm. Much like the Steelers’ Ben Roethlisberger, Lovelocke has outstanding arm strength with good rotation and weight transfer unleashing the ball. He can rifle the intermediate tosses on a line and deep with little effort. Even his off-balance attempts display good velocity. He completed 65.33 percent of his passes as a sophomore and 66.43 percent in 2013, thanks to his ability to flash pinpoint accuracy. He also scored nine times as a runner last season.
139MITCHELL, Malcolm GeorgiaWR rSr06:00.4 1924.49 5.36
Georgia is “rolling the dice” that their star receiver is back on the field in 2014. Mitchell, recovering from a right knee injury that ended his 2013 season, missed the remainder of spring practice after hurting his left leg in a late March practice. He had torn the ACL in his right knee during the 2013 season-opening loss to Clemson. He had been exposed to only limited work in spring practice, but the Georgia director of sports medicine says Mitchell is expected to have a full recovery by August, when the Bulldogs begin preseason drills. Before his injury woes, Mitchell had 40 catches for 572 yards and four touchdowns in 2012.
140AJAYI, Jay Boise State TBrJr 05:11.1220 4.545.3 5
The Broncos averaged 198.3 rushing yards per game in 2013, with Ajayi accounting for over 55 percent of that real estate (1,425 yards and 18 scores on 249 carries, 222 yards on 22 catches). He reached the 1,000-yard level in his ninth game, the second-fastest a BSU ball-carrier piled up that amount of yards in a season. He is a creative open-field runner with that sudden burst of speed that allows him to immediately gain advantage through the rush lanes. He is an elusive cutback runner with precise plant-and-drive agility. He has the body control and lower-body flexibility to stop and go with no wasted motion and is effective at utilizing head fakes and his hip wiggle to set up the opponent.
141JONES, Matthew FloridaTB Jr06:01.1 2264.58 5.35
2013 was a season that Jones would just soon forget. He missed part of August camp while recovering from a viral infection, then suffered a season-ending knee injury vs. LSU, ending his campaign after just five games. He did finish third on the team with 339 yards on 79 carries (4.3 ypc) and two touchdowns. As the Gators hope to rebuild in 2014, they are counting on Jones being the 1,000-yard rusher they envisioned when they recruited him. When healthy, Jones gets into the holes with good urgency and has the low center of gravity to run at a proper pad level when taking plays to the outside. He is better served as a one-cut runner, but he demonstrates adequate lateral agility and slide to redirect. He has good open field acceleration and the body flexibility to extend and pluck the ball outside his frame.
142HOLMES, Gabrison PurdueTE Sr06:04.4 2604.7 5.36
Purdue gets back a vital weapon for their struggling passing attack. Holmes caught 15 passes in 2012 and had hauled in nine balls during Purdue’s first two games in 2013 but suffered a wrist injury in practice prior to the Notre Dame clash and was lost for the season. He looks the part of a physical tight end with his tall, thick frame and good overall muscle definition. His size presents an inviting target for the quarterback over the middle of the field. He does not have the valid explosive initial burst to threaten the deep zones, but is good at planting and driving out of his breaks, especially when working in drag routes. He needs room to build up to top speed and is much more effective when used underneath, but he has the body control to adjust to the ball in flight.
143SHEPHERD, Austin AlabamaOT rSr06:04.5 3305.38 5.36
With two starters gone on the offensive line and a new quarterback at the helm in Jacob Coker, Stewart needs to continue his development as a pass protector in 2013. The right tackle struggles when left out on an island with speed rushers, but he runs his feet well in attempts to finish blocks and knows how to use his size to wall off his opponent, doing a better job of maintaining inside leverage and readjusting back than most bigger blockers, even though he has issues on the corner. He stays on his feet upon initial contact and can generate a strong punch with either hand rising out of his stance…With his natural strength, he can consistently drive through and knock down defenders, as he aggressively attacks his man until the whistle, especially on running plays.
144DAVIS, Devante Nevada-Las Vegas WRSr 06:02.1210 4.525.3 6
Davis has shattered the UNLV record for touchdown receptions in a season with 14, and became just the second Rebel since 1994 to reach the 1,000-yard mark. His 1,290 yards are the second-most in program history while his 77 catches stand third in a season at UNLV. Davis tied a school record with four scoring grabs in the regular-season finale vs. San Diego State and his 99.7 yards per game stands 17th in the country. The Rebel shows good field awareness and concentration along the boundary, doing a good job of keeping his feet in bounds. He has a natural feel along the sidelines and uses his hands and body well to create separation on shorter routes. He does a good job on shallow crosses and short hitch-type routes, as he won’t hesitate to get physical after the catch.
145FLOWERS, Sedrick TexasOG rJr06:02.6 3125.04 5.36
After serving as an invaluable reserve, Flowers stepped into the starting lineup at left guard vs. Oregon in the Alamo Bowl. The offense’s only bright spot in that 30-7 loss, his 43 knockdowns for the season were the most for any backup lineman in the Big 12 Conference. One of the fastest blockers in the league, he demonstrates good body control and the strength to anchor at the line of scrimmage. He doesn't give much ground, thanks to his balance, quick feet and agility, which allow him to gain a sudden advantage coming off the snap. He does a good job blocking and banging defenders around vs. plays right in front of him and shows no hesitation when he has to run and change direction.
146GALLIK, Andrew Boston College OCSr 06:02.3301 5.255.3 6
After BC averaged 93.0 yards per game rushing in 2012, Gallik took matters into his own hands, delivering 14 touchdown-resulting blocks for a unit that scored 30 times and averaged 212.5 yards per game on the ground in 2013. The thing you notice on game film is Gallik’s explosive burst coming off the snap, staying at a good pad level. He makes a thud crashing into his man upon contact and consistently stays on his feet. He executes quick adjustments on the move and does a nice job of positioning. He has that hunger you look for in a trap blocker, as he consistently shows determination to hunt down defenders in space.
147GRAYSON, Garrett Colorado State QBrSr 06:03.1213 4.845.3 6
The “G-Man” made a triumphant return to the gridiron in 2013 after missing half of his sophomore season due to a collarbone fracture. He recorded one of the best statistical seasons in school history, as he completed 62.1 percent of his passes (297-478) for 3,696 yards and 23 touchdowns, with 11 interceptions, becoming only the fourth 3,000-yard passer at CSU. The Rams passer does a decent job of rolling out to move the pocket and is also good at running the QB draw. He is usually operating out of the shotgun, but when he does line up under center, he shows adequate set-up quickness. He has the foot speed to drive back from center and moves effortlessly in the pocket. He is ready to throw at the end of his drop. He shows a smooth release and gets to his set point with balance and agility.
148HUMPHRIES, D.J. FloridaOT Jr06:05.1 2854.97 5.36
Humphries was one of a slew of Gators to finish the year on the sidelines, as the left tackle played in just the first seven games before suffering a right knee medial collateral ligament injury prior to the Georgia clash. The only blocker to grade at least 80 percent for consistency in every game he played in for Florida in 2013, the junior needs to develop more bulk on his frame. He has above-average foot quickness and body control, as he can change direction and redirect working in-line, but lacks explosion when having to get to the second level. He knows how to come off the snap quickly and, when he gets his hands up, he will generally lock on and sustain. He has the leg drive to pop on contact, but needs more strength in order to gain movement vs. the larger defenders
149SALT, Visesio "Junior" UtahOG Sr06:02.2 3225.24 5.36
Salt was a prized defensive tackle recruit, but after he missed the 2012 season with a foot fracture sustained in August camp, he was shifted to the offensive line, making his debut as the starting right guard in 2013. He enters 2014 fall camp with a lingering hand injury from April drills, but is expected to be ready for the start of his final campaign. He does a very good job using his natural strength and mass to simply decleat defenders that get in his way, using his size with great effectiveness to gain advantage. He is not a typical big man who will lean into a defender and occupy space. He comes off the snap at a good pad level and shows very good knee bend and hip flexibility.
150DAVIS, Andre South Florida WRSr 06:00.4204 4.555.3 6
A model for consistency, Davis holds the school record with a string of 30 straight games with at least one catch and set the annual mark with 735 receiving yards in 2013, pacing the Bulls with 49 receptions. The split end does a very good job of using his hands to push off the defensive backs. His size, strength and acceleration allow him to defeat the press and he has enough moxie in his swim moves to elude and get into his routes quickly. He has the nifty feet you want in a receiver, making sharp changes of direction. He needs to rely on his speed to separate (will try to overpower the defender). He is used a lot on slants and underneath stuff, but has a very good burst out of breaks to gain an advantage.
PRO GRADE CATEGORYEXPLANATION
8.1-9.0 Franchise
Player
Immediate starter...Should have a major impact to the success of the franchise, barring injury...Possesses superior critical factors...Plays with consistency and without abnormal extra effort...Rare talent.
7.6-8.0 Star Quality Eventual starter...Should make a significant contribution in his first year...Possesses above average critical factors...Has the talent and skills to start...Will contribute to upgrading the team...Can play without abnormal effort, but has some inconsistency in his play that will improve with refinement and development...Has no real weakness.
7.0-7.5 Impact Player Possesses at least average to above average critical factors in all areas...Will contribute immediately, whether as a starter or a valuable reserve...Will move into the starting lineup with seasoning...Above average player who needs to refine certain areas.
6.5-6.9 Eventual Starter Could move into the starting lineup within three years...Has average critical factors in all areas...Needs further development, but has the ability to contribute.
6.0-6.4 Potential Starter Could force himself into the starting lineup with improved perform- ances...Will make a team...Has average critical factors in most areas, but at least one with less than average quality that he will have a hard time overcoming...Probable draft choice.
5.5-5.9 Roster Player Has the ability to serve as a key reserve and possible future starter... Possesses average critical factors, but more than several areas are less than average...Plays with normal extra effort.
5.0-5.4 Project Has the skills to play pro ball with proper tutoring...May make a team based on need...Possesses no real strong critical factors and is probably below average in several areas that the player will have a hard time overcoming...Possible draft choice, but only if that team is caught short on talent available at that position.
4.6-4.9 Developmental Could make a team with an impressive showing in training camp... Not strong in most critical factors...Deficient in more than one area that he will not be able to overcome...At least average in the factor of competitiveness...May not make a team due to his limitations.
4.1-4.5 Camp Player Has redeeming qualities that could allow him to play in the pros with improved performances...Deficient in more than one critical factor... Might make a team, but will always be the player that squad will look to replace.
3.5-4.0 Reject Might make a team, but has glaring deficiencies in several critical factors...Below average competitor whose athletic skills will allow him to enter training camp, but has a difficult time in trying to make a team.