This is the initial look at the top 50 prospects in the 2016 NFL Draft class. It's very early in the draft process, with the all-star games, NFL Scouting Combine, pro days and personal workouts yet to take place. What transpires in those events -- as well as what might be discovered during further evaluation of game tape -- will alter how these rankings evolve between now and April 28, when the first round kicks off in Chicago.
Laremy Tunsil - OT, Ole Miss
Tunsil was a three-year starter for the Rebels. He has ideal height, bulk and length for the left tackle position. In the passing game, he is explosive out of his stance and plays with excellent bend and balance. He has a sharp, powerful punch and he is quick to re-work his hands if he loses inside position. He has the speed to cut off edge rushers, the power to anchor vs. the bull rush and the athleticism to redirect vs. counter moves. In the run game, he has the upper-body strength to torque and turn defenders but he doesn't generate a lot of movement at the point of attack. Overall, Tunsil is a Day 1 starting left tackle and he should quickly emerge as one of the top players at his position.
Jalen Ramsey - S, Florida State
Ramsey was a three-year starter for the Seminoles. He has lined up at safety, cornerback and nickel during his career. He is a tall, long athlete with excellent short-area quickness, long speed and fluidity. Although he is a gifted cornerback, I believe his best pro position is safety. He is very instinctive to read, react and close on the ball. He has outstanding ball skills. He is very aggressive to fill and support the run. He brings energy to his side of the ball and he's made big plays in high-pressure moments throughout his career. Overall, Ramsey's explosiveness, versatility and playmaking skills are very similar to Tyrann Mathieu's coming out of LSU.
Myles Jack - LB, UCLA
Jack has started 29 games in three years for the Bruins. His 2015 campaign was cut short due to a knee injury. This is an explosive playmaker with a unique skill set. He lines up all over the field on defense, including inside linebacker, outside linebacker and nickel cornerback. Against the run, he has the quickness to shoot gaps as well as the strength to play off blocks. He has a violent punch to take on and separate from blockers and he's quick to locate and close on the ball. He's at his best in pass coverage, where he can mirror tight ends, running backs and even wide receivers. There are games where he covers in the slot and he makes it look easy. He has also carried the ball on offense and he has NFL starting ability at running back as well. He has vision, balance and an explosive burst with the ball in his hands. Overall, Jack has tremendous value because of his ability to dominate at multiple positions.
Joey Bosa - DE, Ohio State
Bosa was a three-year starter at defensive end for the Buckeyes. Against the run, he has a quick punch to shock blockers before shedding and finding the ball. He is very consistent at holding the point of attack on the front side and he uses effort and quickness to make plays on the back side. As a pass rusher, he lacks an elite burst but he generates a lot of pressure because of his athletic ability and technique. He has very quick hands and a variety of moves. He plays with excellent pad level and he can push the pocket with his bull rush. His effort is excellent. Overall, Bosa isn't dynamic but he is very athletic, disruptive and productive.
DeForest Buckner - DT, Oregon
Buckner was a four-year starter at defensive end for the Ducks. He has rare height and an athletic build for the position. He primarily lines up at defensive end in the Ducks' three-man front but he will see some reps at three-technique when they get into passing situations. Against the run, he uses his length to press out single blocks and he's very athletic in back-side pursuit. However, his pad level gets too high at times and he will get crushed by angle blocks. Against the pass, he has very active hands and he can generate movement with his bull rush. His ability to pop, separate and close is very impressive. His effort is outstanding. Overall, Buckner is a dominant player on tape and he has tremendous upside at the next level.
Ezekiel Elliott - RB, Ohio State
Elliott was a two-year starter at running back for the Buckeyes. He has ideal size, quickness and toughness for the position. On inside runs, he has excellent vision, balance and power. He is quick to press the hole and he has the lateral quickness to avoid defenders in tight quarters. He will bounce outside when needed but he likes to stay north and south. On outside runs, he has a burst to the edge and he has home-run speed to go the distance once he turns the corner. He is outstanding in the passing game, showing soft hands out of the backfield and a willingness to chest up blitzing linebackers. Overall, there is very little not to like about Elliott. He should be an immediate-impact player on all three downs.
Carson Wentz - QB, North Dakota State
Wentz was a two-year starter at quarterback for the Bison. He lines up both under center and in the shotgun in this offense. He has quick feet in his setup and he throws from a wide, firm base. He is very quick to work through progressions and he throws with excellent touch and anticipation. He is very accurate underneath and intermediate but he has been inconsistent with his deep-ball accuracy. He has a quick release and he can throw from a variety of arm angles. The ball doesn't jump out of his hand but he has enough velocity to make all of the throws. He is very athletic to create plays with his legs and he's effective on designed QB runs. He is extremely tough to hang in the pocket vs. pressure and he's played really well in big games. Overall, Wentz has an enticing blend of size, ability and toughness. Don't be fooled by his level of competition. He's a big-time talent.
Jared Goff - QB, Cal
Goff was a three-year starter at quarterback for the Bears. He has the desired height for the position and a lean, narrow frame. He operates in the shotgun in the Bears' air-raid attack. Everything about him is quick: Quick feet, quick eyes, quick release. It's not all pick and stick in this version of the spread offense. There are plenty of examples where he reads left to right and delivers the ball. He doesn't have a huge arm but he throws a pretty ball and he can fit it into tight windows. He will try to force the ball on occasion, which has led to some turnovers. He doesn't look to run often but he is athletic inside the pocket to avoid trouble and extend plays. He is very tough and doesn't flinch under heavy pressure. Overall, Goff will need some time to adjust to an NFL offense but he has all of the necessary tools to be a solid starter at the next level.
Jaylon Smith - LB, Notre Dame
Smith was a three-year starter at linebacker for the Fighting Irish. This is an ultra-twitched-up athlete that creates "wow" plays on a routine basis. He primarily lines up inside, but he has experience on the outside as well. Against the run, he attacks the line of scrimmage and stuns lead blockers with a jolting punch. There are times where he struggles to sort through the trash inside but once he sees it, he gets there in a hurry. He has incredible range and makes a lot of plays near the sideline. Against the pass, he is a dynamic blitzer with timing and burst. He has the speed and agility to mirror running backs and tight ends in coverage. Unfortunately, he suffered a knee injury in the Fiesta Bowl against Ohio State and his status for next season is up in the air. Overall, if healthy, this player would be in the mix for the first overall pick. He has rare talent.
Reggie Ragland - LB, Alabama
Ragland was a two-year starter at inside linebacker for the Crimson Tide. He has a thick, square build and he's a very physical player. Against the run, he is quick to sort, fill and chest up ball carriers. He has stopping power as a tackler. Once he makes contact, the play is over. He lacks short area quickness but he builds speed and has plus lateral range. In the passing game, he has some stiffness in coverage but he can run with backs and tight ends. He is an effective blitzer and will even occasionally put his hand on the ground and rush off the edge. Overall, Ragland is a tone-setter with his physical style of play and should be a dependable starter immediately.
Vernon Hargreaves - CB, Florida
Hargreaves was a three-year starter at cornerback for the Gators. He lines up both outside and in the slot. He is a short, compact prospect with excellent burst, change of direction and toughness. In press coverage, he flashes an effective two-hand jam and he's fluid when he opens up. He has plenty of speed to carry vertical routes. From off coverage, he usually uses a side shuffle and reads through the wide receiver to the quarterback. On balls in front of him, he lacks great anticipation but he can close quickly with an explosive burst. He has given up a lot of plays down the field despite being in great position. His lack of size shows up. He isn't a physical run defender. He prefers to catch and drag or dive low on ball carriers. Overall, Hargreaves will have some issues outside because of his lack of size but he could be an elite nickel cornerback at the next level.
Leonard Floyd - LB, Georgia
Floyd was a three-year starter at linebacker for the Bulldogs. He has excellent height and a very lean, narrow frame. His alignment changes depending on the game. He is at his best coming off the edge and I'm projecting him as a SAM linebacker at the next level. As a rusher, he has an explosive first step and a devastating inside counter move. He generates a lot of pressure without OTs getting a hand on him. Despite his skinny frame, he is very effective transferring speed to power off the edge. Against the run, he needs to improve his ability to set the edge. He prefers to slip, spin or trade one for one. Overall, Floyd lacks ideal bulk but his explosiveness is rare and he has double-digit sack potential.
Jarran Reed - DT, Alabama
Reed was a two-year starter for the Crimson Tide. He lines up at both defensive end and nose tackle in the 'Bama 3-4 defense. This is a dominant run defender. He easily locks out blockers over his nose and he can also hold his ground vs. the double team. He is always on his feet and he will also flash the quickness to penetrate and play on the other side of the line of scrimmage. He has tremendous range because of his quickness and effort. As a pass rusher, he can push the pocket with his power and he flashes a quick arm-over as well. Overall, Reed is impossible to move in the run game and I believe he has upside as an interior pass rusher.
Eli Apple - CB, Ohio State
Apple was a two-year starter at cornerback for the Buckeyes. He has a tall, rangy build for the position. This is a very impressive player on tape. He is very physical in press coverage and he's fluid when he opens up to carry receivers down the field. He has the agility and looseness to mirror pivot routes underneath. From off coverage, he uses both a side shuffle and a pedal. He has quick feet and he is aggressive to drive on balls in front. He is very good at playing the ball in front of him but he does have trouble locating the ball down the field. He prefers to play the hands of the wide receiver. He is a very physical tackler in support. Overall, Apple has the size, skill set and demeanor to develop into a No. 1 cornerback.
Ronnie Stanley - OT, Notre Dame
Stanley was a three-year starter at tackle for the Fighting Irish. He has ideal size and length for the position. In pass pro, he has quick feet and uses his length to keep defenders away from his chest. He isn't a natural knee bender but he still maintains balance. Defenders struggle to move him when they rush through his numbers but he will give up some pressure when they work on his edges. In the run game, he is more of a fit-up and wall-off type than a nasty drive blocker. He has the athletic ability to adjust and mirror at the second level. Overall, Stanley isn't a butt-kicker but he is a reliable pass-protecting left tackle.
Corey Coleman - WR, Baylor
Coleman was a three-year starter at wide receiver for the Bears. He lacks ideal size but he is extremely explosive and he produces big plays on a regular basis. In this offense, he runs primarily three routes: take-offs, posts and hitches. He is at his best down the field. He is very sudden in his release and he eats up a cornerback's cushion in a hurry. He tracks the ball naturally and he wins a lot of contested battles down the field. He is an excellent jumper and he high-points the ball consistently. On underneath throws, he attacks the ball and shows a big-time burst to generate yards after the catch. He lacks ideal wiggle but he has the strength to break tackles. Overall, he will need some time to develop as a route runner but his combination of burst and ball skills is special.
A'Shawn Robinson - DT, Alabama
Robinson was a two-year starter at defensive tackle for the Crimson Tide. He has outstanding height, bulk and athleticism for the position. Against the run, he uses his length and strength to stack blockers and holds the point of attack. His pad level is too high at times but he's still strong enough to resist angle blocks and double teams. His effort is solid. As a pass rusher, he flashes an explosive first step as well as an effective slap/swim move. Overall, Robinson has all of the tools to be a dominant three-down presence but he hasn't put it all together yet. His best football is ahead of him.
Laquon Treadwell - WR, Ole Miss
Treadwell was a three-year starter for the Rebels. He is a tall, physical wide receiver with strong hands and excellent competitiveness. He lacks an explosive burst in his release but he is a smooth route runner. He knows how to set up defenders and he uses his big body to wall off both underneath and down the field. He doesn't generate much separation down the field but he wins a lot of contested balls. After the catch, he relies more on strength than wiggle or burst to create extra yardage. Overall, Treadwell lacks ideal speed and quickness but he'll still be effective at the next level because of his size, toughness and ball skills.
Mackensie Alexander - CB, Clemson
Alexander was a two-year starter at cornerback for the Tigers. He lacks ideal size but he's very fluid, instinctive and tough. He plays a lot of press/bail technique as well as off coverage. He has very quick feet and he's efficient with his lower-body movement. He does a good job of staying in phase down the field and he doesn't allow opponents to get on top of him. It's tough to gauge his ability to play the ball because he is rarely challenged in the games I studied. His lack of production is a concern (zero career interceptions) but it might be simply because he lacked opportunity. He is very aggressive against the run and a sure tackler in space. Overall, Alexander lacks ideal size and production but I love his movement skills and toughness. He has the tools to be an excellent No. 2 cornerback or an elite nickel.
Robert Nkemdiche - DT, Ole Miss
Nkemdiche was a three-year starter at defensive tackle for the Rebels. This is a tricky evaluation because the ability is undeniable but the production is underwhelming. Against the run, he has an explosive first step and violent hands to create penetration. He can roll his hips on contact and create movement at the point of attack. He dominates the man in front of him pretty consistently but he needs to improve his ability to locate the football. He also needs to improve his balance and awareness vs. angle blocks. As a pass rusher, he has a combination of hand moves as well as pure power. He gets a lot of pressure but he struggles to finish. Overall, this is a high-ceiling/low-floor prospect.
Paxton Lynch - QB, Memphis
Lynch was a three-year starter at quarterback for the Tigers. He has a rare blend of size, arm strength and athleticism. He lines up in the shotgun in the Tigers' spread attack. His footwork is tough to evaluate because there are so many quick hitters and designed rollouts. He has a longer delivery but the ball jumps out of his hand. He has plenty of arm strength to fit balls into very tight windows down the field. His touch is inconsistent. He flashes the ability to make tough over/under throws in the middle of the field but he'll also gas up an underneath crosser unnecessarily. He is accurate on the move to both the right and left. He is a very skilled runner because of his size, speed and power. My two biggest concerns with Lynch are his inconsistent decision making and passing touch. Overall, Lynch has the highest upside of any quarterback in the draft but he's going to need time to develop.
Kevin Dodd - DE, Clemson
Dodd was a one-year starter at defensive end for the Tigers. He lines up on the left side and he'll play out of a two- and three-point stance. He has outstanding height, length and athleticism. Against the run, he's at his best when slanting and attacking gaps. He's very quick and slippery, which leads to a lot of tackles behind the line of scrimmage. He has an explosive burst closing from the back side. He is an excellent pass rusher. He has an explosive get-off, an array of hand moves and the ability to bend/wrap the edge. He dominated in the national championship game, collecting 3 sacks and 5 tackles for loss. Overall, Dodd doesn't have a lot of experience but he has all of the tools to be a double-digit sack artist at the next level.
Darron Lee - LB, Ohio State
Lee was a two-year starter at linebacker for the Buckeyes. He has an ideal blend of instincts, speed and playmaking ability. Against the run, he is at his best when he can run/chase from the back side or shoot gaps and attack. He will aggressively take on lead blockers but there are times where he gets swallowed because of his lack of girth. He is an explosive, reliable tackler. He has stopping power. He is very valuable in the passing game. He is a dynamic blitzer and he's instinctive as a zone dropper. He has the speed and agility to run/mirror backs and tight ends. He has a knack for splash plays, including returning picks and fumbles for scores. Overall, Lee is an ideal 4-3 weakside linebacker prospect that should stuff stat sheets very early in his NFL career.
Shaq Lawson - DE, Clemson
Lawson was a three-year starter at defensive end for the Tigers. He has average height and a thick, square build. Against the run, he has a powerful base to sit and hold the point of attack. He has very strong hands to shock and shed blockers. He makes a lot of plays because of his outstanding effort. He has been a very productive pass rusher. He doesn't have elite burst or bend but he wins with power and relentlessness. He knows how to work through the edges of blockers and he's an excellent finisher. He will peel off and cover a back on occasion but his stiffness is an issue in space. Overall, Lawson lacks ideal athleticism and burst but he's incredibly tough, productive and instinctive.
Jack Conklin - OT, Michigan State
Conklin was a three-year starter at tackle for the Spartans. He has excellent size and toughness for the position. In the run game, he is a mauler. He generates movement on down blocks and plenty of knockdowns. He has the upper-body strength to torque and toss defenders lined up over his nose. He lacks ideal foot quickness to consistently cut off on the back side. In pass pro, he isn't explosive out of his stance but he stays square and works to position his hands inside. He is rarely caught out of position. He is very aware and instinctive. Overall, Conklin lacks ideal foot speed and bend but his size, tenacity and awareness will make him a solid starting right tackle at the next level.
Taylor Decker - OT, Ohio State
Decker was a three-year starter at tackle for the Buckeyes. The more I've studied Decker, the more I've appreciated his ability. He has excellent size and plays with a nasty demeanor. In the run game, he's a little high/narrow but he still generates movement on down blocks. He's agile enough to combo up to the second level and wall off linebackers. In pass pro, he is consistently late off the ball but he's able to recover and square up speed rushers. His pad level is too high but he has a very quick punch and he will re-work his hands when he loses position. He will give ground vs. power before eventually anchoring down. He is very aware vs. twists and stunts. Overall, Decker has flaws but he's big, physical and aware. I don't think he'll ever be an elite player but he should have a long career as a functional starting tackle.
Sheldon Rankins - DT, Louisville
Rankins was a two-year starter and four-year contributor for the Cardinals. He lines up at both the three-technique and defensive end. In the run game, he is consistently the first one off the ball. He has a very explosive lower half and he plays with good leverage vs. single blocks. His athletic ability was on display on a scoop and score in the BC game. He used a jump cut like a running back to avoid a tackle and take it the distance. He is an effective interior pass rusher that relies more on quickness than pure power. His effort is excellent. Overall, Rankins should be a three-down defensive tackle very early in his NFL career.
Kyler Fackrell - LB, Utah State
Fackrell was a three-year starter at linebacker for the Aggies. He has a tall, athletic build with long arms. Against the run, he dominates tight ends at the point of attack. He has quick, powerful hands to separate and he knows how to find the ball. He is very loose and bendy to wrap around blocks and pursue from the back side. He's versatile in the passing game. He can run and mirror tight ends and he's an explosive blitzer. He excels at swiping the hands away from opposing blockers and he has a burst to close on the quarterback. Overall, this is a very athletic edge defender with the ability to make plays on all three downs.
Kamalei Correa - LB, Boise State
Correa was a two-year starter for the Broncos. He lines up at defensive end and outside linebacker in this scheme. He is still a work in progress but he is twitched up and plays with reckless abandon. Against the run, he is at his best on the back side of the play where his burst and effort lead to production. On the front side, he likes to take on with his shoulder instead of using his hands to pop/separate. He will split double teams with pure quickness on occasion. He is more of a blitzer than a pass rusher. When he has a runway, he can explode by or through blockers. He doesn't have a clear pass-rush plan all of the time but it works. His effort is outstanding. Against Utah State, he caught the running back 60 yards down the field. Overall, Correa is raw but he has the traits to be a very disruptive 3-4 outside linebacker at the next level.
Andrew Billings - DT, Baylor
Billings was a two-year starter at defensive tackle for the Bears. He has a compact build with excellent length for the position. In the run game, he has some serious snap in his punch to jar blockers before freeing himself to find the ball. He is very aware and consistently resists pressure against down blocks and double teams. As a pass rusher, he relies almost solely on power. He can roll his hips on contact and generate push with his bull rush. His effort is solid but needs to improve his ability to stay on his feet vs. cut blocks. He's on the ground too much. Overall, I don't envision a lot of sack production at the next level but he can dominate vs. the run and push the pocket against the pass.
Noah Spence - DE, Eastern Kentucky
Spence transferred to Eastern Kentucky after being banned from the Big Ten. He lines up at DE in their 3-4 scheme. Against the run, he plays with good leverage and strength at the point of attack but he needs to improve his ability to shed blocks. He has the speed and motor to make plays in chase from the back side. He is an outstanding pass rusher. He can win with speed, power or counter moves. He isn't a natural bender around the edge but he has violent hands and an explosive closing burst. He has been very productive this season despite facing consistent double and even triple teams. Overall, Spence has some off-field concerns that need to be addressed but he has tremendous upside as a pass rusher.
Austin Johnson - DT, Penn State
Johnson was a two-year starter at defensive tackle for the Nittany Lions. He has excellent size and he's a disruptive force up front. Against the run, he is adept at stacking blockers as well as wrapping around them. He has quick hands and his effort is outstanding. He has impressive lateral range. As a pass rusher, he uses a quick arm-over move to generate pressure and his motor never stops. Overall, Johnson isn't flashy but he has ideal size, effort and production. He should be a very dependable starter right away.
Miles Killebrew - S, Southern Utah
Killebrew was a four-year starter for the Thunderbirds. He lines up as a box safety and functions basically as a linebacker in this scheme. He is a dominant run defender. He is quick to diagnose and he explodes downhill toward the football. He is a very dynamic, explosive tackler. He produces big shots in the alley as well as between the tackles. He doesn't have much coverage responsibility but he has the speed and athleticism to cover backs and tight ends. I don't envision him as a traditional high safety but he should excel at strong safety or weakside linebacker.
Kenny Clark - DT, UCLA
Clark was a 2 1/2-year starter at defensive tackle for the Bruins. This is a very productive player on tape. Against the run, he launches out of a crouched stance and quickly shoots his hands to lock out blockers. He holds his ground vs. single blocks but he will get washed down the line by angle blocks and double teams. He has very good instincts to locate the ball and his effort is strong. As a pass rusher, he uses a slap/rip move to generate pressure and he has an effective bull rush. Overall, Clark isn't dynamic but he plays with excellent strength, technique and effort.
Ryan Kelly - C, Alabama
Kelly was a three-year starter at center for the Crimson Tide. This is an easy player to evaluate. He has ideal size, toughness and awareness. In the run game, he has quick feet to fit up, turn and wall off defenders. He can create movement against opponents over his nose. He takes excellent angles to the second level and he has the agility to adjust in space. In pass pro, he shoots his hands in tight and steers defenders. He can bend and anchor easily and he's assignment aware. Overall, this player has Pro Bowl potential and should be ready to start Day 1.
Hunter Henry - TE, Arkansas
Henry was a three-year starter at tight end for the Razorbacks. He has ideal size, athleticism and ball skills. He lines up as a traditional hand-in-the-ground tight end but he will also flex out in the slot. He has a quick swim release to avoid defenders and he's a smooth, fluid route runner. He is very quick at the top of his route and he knows how to use his frame to shield off defenders. He has strong, reliable hands. He tracks the ball naturally down the field. In the run game, he is effective initially to fit up and wall off but he struggles to sustain. Overall, Henry has the potential to be an upper-echelon pass-catching tight end at the next level.
Vernon Butler - DT, Louisiana Tech
Butler was a two-year starter at defensive tackle for the Bulldogs. He has ideal size and strength for the position. He will align at every spot along the defensive front. Against the run, he has the power base to hold the point of attack and he flashes the ability to violently shed blocks. He isn't an ultra-disruptive presence against the run but his effort is excellent. As a pass rusher, he plays with good leverage and has the power to push the pocket. He also has a nifty arm-over move to generate pressure. Overall, Butler lacks ideal twitch but he's big, strong and plays with high effort.
Derrick Henry - RB, Alabama
Henry was a two-year starter at running back for the Crimson Tide. He has rare height/bulk for the position. He has very good vision but he is a one-track runner. If he has to stop/start his feet, he struggles. He builds speed and he's a load to bring down at the second level. In the passing game, he has reliable hands and he will chest up linebackers in pass pro. Overall, this will likely be one of the most scrutinized players in the draft. I believe he can be a very successful NFL runner based on his unique mix of size, power and build-up speed.
Karl Joseph - S, West Virginia
Joseph is a three-year starter for the Mountaineers but he missed the majority of the 2015 campaign due to injury. This is an aggressive player that plays much bigger than his size. Against the pass, he has excellent instincts and range from the deep middle. He will occasionally match up with tight ends in coverage. He has the speed and agility to mirror them but he will get out-muscled for the ball at times. He is a missile against the run. He explodes to the alley and he has some big hits on his resume. However, he does fail to break down occasionally and will have some fly-by missed tackles. Overall, Joseph lacks ideal size but he is a playmaker and I love his physical style.
Jonathan Bullard - DT, Florida
Bullard is a three-year starter for the Gators. He is slightly undersized for the position but he is very quick and explosive. Against the run, he has an explosive first step and uses a nifty arm-over move to create negative plays. He lacks the girth to consistently hold up vs. angle blocks and double teams. As a pass rusher, he uses his quick feet and hands to work through edges of blockers. He lacks knock-back power as a bull rusher. Overall, Bullard doesn't fit every defense but he can be a disruptive presence on the inside.
Cody Whitehair - OG, Kansas State
Whitehair was a four-year starter for the Wildcats. He lines up at left tackle but I'm projecting him to guard at the next level. He has an ideal frame and mentality for the position. In pass pro, he can bend and has a firm base to anchor vs. power rushers. He does have trouble cutting off speed on occasion and that is the main reason he needs to kick inside to guard. He plays with good awareness. In the run game, he can drop his weight and create movement at the point of attack. He looks to finish every snap. Overall, Whitehair does have some experience playing inside and I don't think it will take him long to make that adjustment. He should be a reliable starting guard for a long time.
Connor Cook - QB, Michigan State
Cook was a three-year starter at quarterback for the Spartans. He operates both under center and in the shotgun. He has quick feet in his setup and a smooth, easy release. He has above-average arm strength despite the failure to generate much drive/torque from his lower half. His accuracy is very inconsistent at all three levels. He flashes the ability to squeeze balls into tight quarters only to come back and miss an easy layup on the next play. He is athletic enough to extend plays and he is comfortable throwing on the move to both sides. Overall, Cook has a lot of tools to work with but I question whether or not he'll ever be accurate enough to be a top-tier NFL starter.
Michael Thomas - WR, Ohio State
Thomas was a two-year starter at wide receiver for the Buckeyes. He has a tall, athletic frame for the position. He doesn't have ideal suddenness but he is very smooth and savvy as a route runner. He has the upper-body strength to power through press coverage and he steadily gains ground with his long stride. He knows how to set up defenders before snapping off his route and attacking the football. He uses his body to wall off defenders down the field and he tracks the ball naturally. After the catch, he has some elusiveness but he lacks the top speed to go the distance. Overall, Thomas should be an outstanding possession receiver at the next level.
Sheldon Day - DT, Notre Dame
Day was a three-year starter for the Fighting Irish. He lacks ideal size but he's extremely versatile and explosive. He lines up both inside and on the edge. Against the run, he is very disruptive. He uses a quick arm-over move and then explodes toward the ball carrier. If he doesn't win early with quickness, he lacks the girth and balance to avoid getting washed down the line of scrimmage. He is a very skilled interior pass rusher. He has a variety of hand moves and counters to complement his quick feet. Overall, Day lacks size but he is a very skilled interior pass rusher.
Will Fuller - WR, Notre Dame
Fuller was a two-year starter at wide receiver for Fighting Irish. He has average height and a rail-thin frame for the position. His game is all about speed. He runs up on his toes and gets up to top speed immediately. Opponents usually give him a lot of cushion and he still eats it up and climbs on top of coverage repeatedly. He tracks the ball naturally down the field but his hands are very spotty. He drops a lot of balls over his shoulder as well as when he's facing the quarterback. He has a bad habit of unnecessarily jumping for balls on his frame. He isn't a polished route runner but he still generates separation because of his burst. After the catch, he weaves around defenders when he's on the move but he lacks short-area quickness to avoid in tight quarters. Overall, Fuller reminds me a lot of Ted Ginn Jr. He's going to have some drops but he makes up for it with big plays.
Braxton Miller - WR, Ohio State
Miller made the successful transition to wide receiver after starting at quarterback for the Buckeyes. He didn't get a lot of touches this season but he made the most of them. He is ideally suited to play in the slot. He is strong enough to power through press and he has the short-area quickness to uncover underneath. He has very natural hands despite his limited experience. He is electric with the ball in his hands. He can make defenders miss, run by them or through them. He has tremendous value because he can line up at running back, wide receiver or quarterback. The team that drafts him will have fun incorporating his array of skills into an NFL offense.
Josh Perry - LB, Ohio State
Perry was a three-year starter at linebacker for the Buckeyes. He has outstanding height, weight and bulk for the position. He is a physical, downhill player against the run. He can thump off blockers and square up ball carriers. He has good instincts. Against the pass, he has some stiffness in space but he can run with tight ends and backs. Overall, Perry is a reliable player on tape and he could play in any scheme.
Deion Jones - LB, LSU
Jones was a one-year starter at linebacker for the Tigers. He is an undersized player with outstanding play speed. Against the run, he is at his best when he can attack gaps or chase from the back side. He has an explosive closing burst and outstanding range. He will struggle to sort through the trash inside the tackle box but once he sees it, he gets there quickly. He is outstanding in the passing game. He is a dynamic blitzer and he can match up in man coverage underneath. Overall, this is a run-and-hit player that should excel as a 4-3 weakside linebacker at the next level.
Su'a Cravens - LB, USC
Cravens is a three-year starter for the Trojans. He has lined up at safety and linebacker during his college career. He isn't ultra-twitched-up but he's very athletic, instinctive and productive. Against the run, he is very slippery to work around blockers and he has excellent snap anticipation. There are times where he gets swallowed up at the point of attack. When given the opportunity, he is very effective covering tight ends. He is physical to re-route and fast enough to carry them down the seam. Overall, Cravens has starter ability as a box safety or 3-4 WILL linebacker.
Artie Burns - CB, Miami (Fla.)
Burns was a two-year starter for the Hurricanes. He is a tall, leggy cornerback with good play speed and ball skills. In press coverage, he carries his hands low and fails to re-route opponents. He does a good job of staying on top of receivers and he does flash a burst when has to work back downhill. From off coverage, he is efficient in his plant/drive but he doesn't fully trust his eyes to anticipate throws. He has very good ball skills down the field. He is very disappointing against the run. He gets rag-dolled by much smaller wide receivers. Overall, Burns has a lot of tools but his competitiveness is worrisome.
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