CFB 24/7  

 

Top 150 players in college football for 2016: Nos. 31-40

Print

My ranking of the 150 best players in college football continues with Nos. 31-40.

First Look:
NFL Media analyst and former NFL scout Daniel Jeremiah takes a "first look" at college football's top players for 2016.

31. C.J. Beathard, QB, Iowa (6-foot-2, 215 pounds)
The grandson of former NFL executive Bobby Beathard is a true leader, and has the arm strength and mobility to be an effective NFL starter.

32. J.T. Barrett, QB, Ohio State (6-2, 225)
My guess is that Barrett will play even better in 2016, now that he's not looking over his shoulder due to the presence of Cardale Jones and Braxton Miller. His efficiency as a passer and ability to make plays with his feet if needed will make the Buckeyes a national championship contender ... again.

33. Patrick Mahomes, QB, Texas Tech (6-3, 230)
The nation's leader in total offense is frenetic in the pocket, running around like Fran Tarkenton before either taking off or finding a wide-open receiver downfield. It's hard to take your eyes off of him when Tech has the ball.

34. Lamar Jackson, QB, Louisville (6-3, 205)
Jackson flashed Michael Vick-type talent as a sinewy, strong-armed passer and electric runner. Continued improvement in the pocket, and some big performances against Clemson and Florida State this season, will put him at the top of this list in 2017.

35. Malik McDowell, DE/DT, Michigan State (6-6, 276)
In the Spartans' defense, McDowell plays at nose tackle despite his tall, relatively lean frame. He holds up well in the interior, however, holding up one or two blockers with solid leverage and arm extension. If he went out to the edge a bit more in another system, he'd be even more productive.

36. O.J. Howard, TE, Alabama (6-6, 255)
When Alabama quarterbacks actually look Howard's way, the result is usually very good. A smooth athlete who destroys the center of the field, it will be interesting to see if he becomes a consistent part of the offense as a senior like he was in the national championship game (5 catches, 208 yards, two touchdowns).

37. Zach Banner, OT, USC (6-9, 360)
Banner is one of the biggest players in college football history, but was still agile enough to earn a spot on the Trojans' basketball team. He stays with most strong-side defenders just fine, but if he can effectively move to left tackle in his final year, he'll boost his stock.

38. Charles Harris, DE/OLB, Missouri (6-3, 255)
Harris spent a lot of time in the backfield last year, leading the SEC with 18.5 tackles for loss. I'll be looking for him to consistently win one-on-one battles against better SEC tackles this season.

39. Jarrad Davis, OLB, Florida (6-2, 230)
This downhill player who's capable of playing inside or outside will be a favorite among NFL coaches and scouts as they review his play as a senior.

40. James Washington, WR, Oklahoma State (6-0, 205)
This Cowboy blows the top off of defenses. Look for him to become a household name this season as the team fights for a Big 12 conference crown.

Follow Chad Reuter on Twitter @chad_reuter.

Print

Headlines

The previous element was an advertisement.

NFL Shop