No Senior Bowl quarterback has had a better week of practice than Derek Carr, and NFL evaluators are taking notice. He's answering the questions people had about his game.
There were doubts about his arm strength coming into the week and I think he's done a lot to put those concerns to rest. A lot of his throws at Fresno State were for 10-12 yards or fewer, but I have no questions at all about his arm strength. He will get the ball downfield, and he'll do it accurately. The quarterbacks here had to battle heavy wind gusts earlier in the week, and I was really impressed with how his throws looked in those conditions. He did a nice job of cutting through it.
I think he's been very consistent throwing the ball, and his athleticism has shined through, too. He moves around well in the pocket and finds a way to get the ball to his receivers, but he doesn't force the ball downfield if it's not there. He's well-schooled that way. He'll check it down, and knowing the right time to do that is a big part of being a good quarterback.
This has been a very good week for him thus far.
Thomas looks the part
It's ridiculous how impressive Logan Thomas is physically. There's time when he cuts loose some throws and you go, 'Oh my goodness.' The concerns about him stem from his college tape. He has a career completion percentage below 60. Evaluators are asking, "How much of that is his offense and how much is him?" They'll have a lot of work to do when it comes to evaluating him as a prospect, but he has all the physical gifts. Of course, he'll need more than that to make it at the next level. Don't discount Thomas at all, but I've had some people say to me, "He was recruited as a tight end out of high school and he might have to go back to that."
WRs intrigue coaches
I was talking to a wide receivers coach from an NFL team and he told me the guy he's seen who has intrigued him the most this week has been UCLA's Shaq Evans because of his build and ability to get upfield. The coach was also enamored with his ability to work in the middle of field as a strongly built tough guy who can catch the ball.
Vanderbilt WR Jordan Matthews has had a little bit of an up-and-down week. He's a big, thick guy and looks like a pretty good route runner. Matthews competes for the ball and is tough. He's getting coached really hard by Jerry Sullivan, the Jaguars' wide receivers coach from Jaguars, and that's usually a sign that a coach thinks a guy is talented.
CB to watch
As we watched 6-foot-3 corner Keith McGill at practice, I had a secondary coach from an NFL team look at me and say, "That's the biggest corner I've ever seen." We get pulled into hyperbole at times, but his point is well taken. He's a monster and is getting a lot of attention this week. He fits the new ideal mold for the position in the NFL -- he's a big corner with long arms.
Auburn DE Dee Ford has looked very good this week, and I think he fits best as a 3-4 outside linebacker. Sure, he can rush the passer with his hand in the ground, but his best value is standing up outside in a 3-4. He runs through drills like a gazelle. It's almost not fair for him to go through drills with everyone else -- that's how good he looks.
Sutton not the same
Arizona State DT Will Sutton is a big, thick guy and he doesn't have same explosiveness or burst we saw from him in 2012. He has added weight and is a different type of defensive tackle now. I don't know if he can get that explosiveness back, but we haven't seen it from him this week.
DT Donald legit
I'm hearing Pitt DT Aaron Donald is in the second-round mix right now, but don't be surprised if a team decides to jump up and get him earlier than we expect right now. Everywhere you go, you hear the same comparison -- Geno Atkins.