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The latest rumors and insider notes as well as updates on visits and workouts.


- Last year, prior to the combine, I mentioned Travis Frederick was being whispered about as the surprise pick of round one (found here in the April 12th notes).  After his combine workout (has he completed the forty yet?) I never bothered to follow up.  Foolish me.  This year I’m told another center, Weston Richburg of Colorado State, (scouting report) could be the surprise pick in round one.  Its a thin class at the center position and the feeling is if you need one Richburg is the guy and you better grab him early.  His smart, athletic and fundamentally sound play is drawing comparisons to Pro-Bowl center Nick Mangold.  Who would take Richburg at the end of the first frame?  I’m told for a variety of reasons keep an eye on the Green Bay Packers, New England Patriots and Denver Broncos.  The Jacksonville Jaguars are candidates for Richburg at the top of round two.

- Virginia tackle Morgan Moses (scouting report) is also a possibility in the late part of round one and his value has increased after the injury to Brandon Thomas.  Its not that Thomas would have been selected before Moses rather the injury precludes a team passing on Moses with the hopes of getting Thomas a round later.  I’m told the Carolina Panthers could grab Moses late in round one and many think he won’t get past the Washington Redskins in the second frame.

- Another tackle the Washington Redskins are seriously interested in is Cameron Fleming (scouting report) of Stanford.  Fleming has worked out for the Carolina Panthers as well as the Atlanta Falcons.  He’s also completed a workout/visit for the Tennessee Titans.  I’m told not only not only did Fleming score an impressive 33 on the wonderlic but one of the above mentioned teams gave him a 20 question quiz which he answered in less than one minute and scored 100%.

- After his knee injury where will Brandon Thomas fall?  We presently grade Thomas as a 4th rounder in our tackle rankings and have been told he will likely drop to the fourth/fifth round area.

- With the media focused on the higher rated quarterbacks, Keith Wenning of Ball State is drawing a good amount of interest from teams.  He’s had 8 visits and an additional 8 workouts.  Those who’ve worked Wenning out or brought him in for a visit include the Minnesota Vikings, Green Bay Packers, Baltimore Ravens, St Louis Rams and New England Patriots.  The braintrust for the Cleveland Browns privately worked out Wenning.

The latest rumors and insider notes as well as updates on visits and workouts.  Update: April 10th- Mike Evans top ten- but to whom?

April 10th

- Sources close to the team say if Calvin Pryor/S/Louisville drops into the second day he is a priority for the Detroit Lions.

– Consensus is Mike Evans/WR/Texas A&M is a lock to be a top ten pick. Several teams feel the spread between he and Sammy Watkins of Clemson is not a great as many are making it out to be, something I completely agree with. Based on conversations its my educated “guess” the team who selects Evans will make a trade to acquire his services . Right now it looks like three teams are the frontrunners to make some sort of move for Evans. If the St Louis Rams trade out of the second spot, and they will make every effort to do as much, Evans would be a target assuming they stay in the top ten. Two teams selecting in the middle of the first frame who are very high on Evans and would consider trading up to grab him are the Philadelphia Eagles and Baltimore Ravens.

– Now that DeSean Jackson is no longer with the organization receiver becomes a need for the Philadelphia Eagles. With the way this draft shapes up a receiver in round one is a likely possibility if they stand pat at pick 22. I’ve mentioned Brandin Cooks of Oregon State being a good fit for the team and I understand he’ll be a consideration in round one. The other wide out I expect to get play from the Eagles is Marquis Lee of USC.

– Several teams presently grade Zach Martin of Notre Dame ahead of Michigan’s Taylor Lewan. For the record I disagree and feel Lewan is the most underappreciated of the top tackles. I’m told Martin offers potential at four spots on the offensive line, both tackle and guard spots, and is less prone to making mental mistakes compared to Lewan.

– For some reason people seem to be sleeping on Phillip Gaines, the big bodied cornerback from Rice who stunned scouts by clocking as fast as 4.31s in the forty at the combine. Gaines had dinner with the Jacksonville Jaguars last month the evening before his pro-day and has trips lined up with the New York Giants, Arizona Cardinals, Miami Dolphins and Buffalo Bills. He’s also worked out with the Cincinnati Bengals and Tampa Bay Bucs. Gaines is presently rated as a fifth rounder on our cornerback board.

– On Tuesday evening I reported the New England Patriots worked out Virginia Tech prospects Logan Thomas and DJ Coles. There’s some additional insight on this workout. The feeling league wide is the Patriots will take a quarterback at some point in the draft as they expect to lose Ryan Mallett at the end of next season, hence the interest in Thomas. As far as Coles is concerned, I’m told the Patriots had him do a lot of tight end work during the 45 minutes spent in position drills. This included coming out of a three point stance, blocking drills and lining up in the slot. Consider this; Coles measures in the area of 6-feet/3-inches and 235 pounds, timing in the high 4.4s in the forty. When the Patriots selected Aaron Hernandez his official measurements went 6-feet, 2.5-inches, 245lbs with a 4.58s forty time. Something to think about.

– Prior to the news he had torn a knee ligament during a workout with the New Orleans Saints, Brandon Thomas/OL/Clemson had official visits set up with the Oakland Raiders, Dallas Cowboys, Miami Dolphins and Carolina Panthers as well as workouts with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and New York Giants. Obviously the workouts are nixed and I’ve received no word on the visits.

– One offensive lineman on the mend, Spencer Long of Nebraska, is scheduled to hold a private workout on April 17th in which he’ll be doing offensive line drills. Long could end up being selected much earlier (4th round) than people presently project.

- Scouts were very impressed with Towson running back Terrance West during his pro-day workout earlier this week. In miserable conditions of pouring rain and cold weather, West tipped the scale at 230-pounds (five more than the combine) then looked good in drills. A number of the teams looking for a bigger back feel West has solidified himself as a fourth round choice.

– West was not the only one to turn heads during Towson’s pro-day. Cornerback Jordan Love, a free agent sleeper with a real chance as a dime back/special teams player at the next level, measured 5107/190lbs then timed 4.46s in the forty, 6.89 in the 3 cone and 4.00 in the short shuttle.

- I reported earlier Larry Webster spent the bulk of his time at Bloomsburg pro-day participating in tight end drills. The reviews have been positive. Though Webster showed some stiffness at his new position he caught the ball with his hands away from his frame rather than body catching. Webster has tremendous physical skills but scouts question his heart, something apparent on film. Webster does not play with the warrior mentality nor always look like the most competitive guy on the field.

April 7th

- I’m told besides working out Rutgers receivers Brandon Coleman and Quron Pratt today, the Philadelphia Eagles had both Kelvin Benjamin/WR/Florida State and Cody Latimer/WR/Indiana at their facility for an official visit.

– Add the San Diego Chargers to the list of teams bringing in Cody Latmer/WR/Indiana in for an official 30 visit. While most feel the Chargers will look for a true burner in the draft there’s some concern about depth at the receiver position with questions surrounding the Malcolm Floyd and Danario Alexander.

– The San Diego Chargers are also bringing in New Mexico offensive lineman Darryl Johnson, who primarily lined up at both left and right tackle for the Lobos but projects to guard in the NFL. The New Orleans Saints will be working out Johnson, who has next level size as well as athleticism and should, at the very least, be a practice squad developmental prospect.

– Even before today’s pro-day workout at Towson running back Terrance West had already worked out for the Atlanta Falcons and made an official visit to see the Tennessee Titans. I’m told the Minnesota Vikings are also interested in the record setting ball carrier. The belief right now is Tennessee would be the frontrunner to select West.

- John Ulrich, a sleeper offensive tackle from Georgia State who recently ran 4.93s in the forty at 290lbs during a regional combine, has trips lined up to see the Atlanta Falcons and Seattle Seahawks.

– Last week sources told me they expect an offensive tackle heavy draft from the Seattle Seahawks next month. The hope is to select a versatile edge blocker as protection in case the team cannot resign Russell Okung when his contract is up in two years.

– Even with their recent moves in free agency I’m told the Tampa Bay Buccaneers hope to come out of the draft with at least one offensive tackle and/or offensive guard with starting potential. The Bucs want versatility and a blocker who can handle multiple positions.

– After his terrific performance at pro-day last week I was informed Chaz Sutton/DE-OLB/South Carolina met with both the Houston Texans and Oakland Raiders.

April 4th

- Earlier this week I reported that insiders informed me the Minnesota Vikings hope to select one of the higher rated linebackers early in round one (Khalil Mack being their preference) then grab their quarterback in round two.  Zach Mettenberger being their signal caller of choice.  Since then more sources have confirmed my report, verifying the team is high on Mettenberger who they believe is a perfect fit for Norv Turner’s system.  Depending on how he does at pro-day next week many question if Mettenberger will even be available to Minnesota in round two.

- Who could take Mettenberger before the Vikings are called on the clock in round two?  The Cleveland Browns, that’s who.  While many have the Browns taking a quarterback with the fourth pick of the draft, most believe they’ll nab a signal caller with either the 26th or 35th pick of the process.  If they don’t go quarterback in round one where does Cleveland look?  Most believe it will be offensive tackle.   Several sources tell me the team is hot and cold on Mitchell Schwartz and will look for an upgrade.  In fact I’m told the Browns made a play for Eugene Monroe when he was on the trading block.  Many claim “you don’t draft a right tackle with a top ten pick” but looking at the versatility and interchangeability of the tackle prospects excepted to be available at fourth pick its understandable why any team would go that route.

-  Back to Zach Mettenberger.  I’m told its very unlikely he’ll do any of the shuttles, 3-cone, etc, next week at pro-day but will complete a full passing workout.  In recent weeks Mettenberger has had no issues on sprint outs or roll outs in preparation for his workout.

- Word in scouting circles has Dakota Dozier of Furman building momentum for himself recently.  Scouts point to way Dozier stepped up against better competition the past two seasons, specifically mentioning the game film against LSU and Clemson.  I’m told Dozier has had private workouts with the Carolina Panthers and Jacksonville Jaguars.

- Thus far the reviews from private workouts have been positive for Logan Thomas.  For example, last week when the Arizona Cardinals worked him out I’m told he was accurate on all his throws including dropping a few in the bucket deep downfield to end the workout.  From a physical and character stand point Thomas continues to impress teams.

- The other prospect impressing scouts in these workouts is DJ Coles, who benefits from being the practice receiver for Logan Thomas.  Coles is physically impressive and very much looks the part.  He’s been looking sharp since pro-day.  Injuries stunted Coles development but go back and watch his 2011 tape if you have the availability and you’ll see the makings of a legitimate NFL receiver.

- Scouts are still buzzing over the performance of Ben Gardner during Stanford’s pro-day.  Teams believe Gardner could develop into a Jarret Johnson type of player, i.e. a college defensive end with decent size who’ll stand up over tackle in a 3-4 at the next level.

-  I’m told Johnson’s present squad, the San Diego Chargers, worked out Akron offensive lineman Jarrod Pughsley today.  Pughsley, who lined up primarily at tackle for the Zips, is a fairly athletic blocker who projects to guard at the next level.

Updated rankings for the cornerback and safety positions.  Rankings include grades on 104 cornerbacks and 84 safeties.

Cornerback

Rnd Full Name School Yr
1st Justin Gilbert Oklahoma State 4Sr
1st Darqueze Dennard Michigan State 4Sr
1st Jason Verrett TCU 4Sr
2nd Kyle Fuller Virginia Tech 4Sr
2nd Bradley Roby Ohio State 4Jr
2-3 Jaylen Watkins Florida 4Sr
2-3 Bashaud Breeland Clemson 4Jr
3rd Lamarcus Joyner Florida State 4Sr
4th Marcus Roberson Florida 3Jr
4th Stanley Jean-Baptiste Nebraska 5Sr
4th Pierre Desir Lindenwood 6Sr
4-5 Louchiez Purifoy Florida 3Jr
5th Ross Cockrell Duke 5Sr
5th Aaron Colvin Oklahoma 4Sr
5th Rashaad Reynolds Oregon State 5Sr
5th Phillip Gaines Rice 5Sr
6th Victor Hampton South Carolina 3Jr
5th E.J. Gaines Missouri 4Sr
6th Ricardo Allen Purdue 4Sr
6th Dontae Johnson North Carolina State 4Sr
6th Bennett Jackson Notre Dame 4Sr
6th Terrance Mitchell Oregon 4Jr
6th Nevin Lawson Utah State 4Sr
6th Bene Benwikere San Jose State 4Sr
6-7 Chris Davis Auburn 4Sr
6-7 Lavelle Westbrooks Georgia Southern 4Sr
7th Deion Belue Alabama 4Sr
7th Andre Hal Vanderbilt 4Sr
7th Demetri Goodson Baylor 5Sr
7th Travis Carrie Ohio 5Sr
7th Dexter McDougle Maryland 5Sr
7th Brandon Dixon Northwest Missouri State 4Sr
7-FA Walt Aikens Liberty 5Sr
FA Kendall James Maine 5Sr
FA Todd Washington Southeastern Louisiana 4Sr
FA Jabari Price North Carolina 4Sr
FA Osahon Irabor Arizona State 5Sr
FA Marcus Williams North Dakota State 5Sr
FA Shaquille Richardson Arizona 4Sr
FA Charles Sawyer Mississippi 5Sr
FA K.J. Morton Baylor 4Sr
FA Kevin Fogg Liberty 5Sr
FA Keith Reaser Florida Atlantic 5Sr
FA Keon Lyn Syracuse 4Sr
FA Carrington Byndom Texas 4Sr
FA Ciante Evans Nebraska 4Sr
FA B.J. Lowery Iowa 4Sr
FA Deven Drane Cincinnati 4Sr
FA Bookie Sneed Sam Houston State 4Sr
FA T.J. Lee III Eastern Washington 4Sr
FA Ri’Shard Anderson Syracuse 5Sr
FA Qua Cox Jackson State 5Sr
FA Dayonne Nunley Miami-Oh 4Sr
FA Zachary McMillian Houston 4Sr
FA Zamel Johnson Temple 5Sr
FA Abdul Smith Temple 5Sr
FA Jimmy Legree South Carolina 5Sr
FA K’Waun Williams Pittsburgh 4Sr
FA Jeffery Garrett Jr Ball State 4Sr
FA Robert Nelson Arizona State 5Sr
FA Ken Gilstrap Middle Tennessee 5Sr
FA L.J. Jones Fresno State 5Sr
FA Kameron Jackson California 3Jr
FA Louis Young Georgia Tech 4Sr
FA Joe Williams Baylor 4Sr
FA Malachi Freeman Akron 4Sr
FA Jordan Love Towson 5Sr
FA Dexter Monroe Harvard 5Sr
FA Jansen Watson Iowa State 5Sr
FA Andrew Green Nebraska 5Sr
FA Tyler Patmon Oklahoma State 4Sr
FA Najja Johnson Buffalo 5Sr
FA Jocquel Skinner Bethel 4Sr
FA Jack Howard Lane 4Sr
FA Eric Gordon Tennessee 5Sr
FA Darrius Morrow South Alabama 5Sr
FA Tyrell Pearson South Alabama 4Sr
FA Brandon McCladdie Citadel 4Sr
FA Al Louis-Jean Jr Boston College 3So
FA Dashaun Phillips Tarleton State 5Sr
FA John Fulton Alabama 4Sr
FA Natturner Harris Norfolk State 5Sr
FA Virgil Williams Southern 4Sr
FA Nick Addison Bethune-Cookman 3Jr
FA Anders Battle Northern Arizona 4Sr
FA Winston Wright South Dakota State 5Sr
FA Lewis Toler Western Michigan 5Sr
FA Brodrick Jenkins West Virginia 5Sr
FA Jahu Coleman Idaho 4Sr
FA Shaq Bell Colorado State 4Sr
FA Antoine Tharpe Massachusetts 4Sr
FA Torin Harris USC 5Sr
FA Chris Parks SMU 4Sr
FA Antonio Marshall Indiana 5Sr
FA Jason Hendricks Pittsburgh 5Sr
FA Devin Wallace Virginia Union 5Sr
FA Jeremy Brown Florida 5Sr
FA Derrick Thomas Marshall 5Sr
FA Zed Evans North Texas 5Sr
FA Deron Wilson Southern Mississippi 5Sr
FA Barry Browning Stanford 4Sr
FA Derrick Rainey Arizona 5Sr
FA Darien Johnson New Mexico State 4Sr
FA Courtney Avery Michigan 4Sr

Safety

Rnd Full Name School Yr
1-2 Calvin Pryor Louisville 3Jr
1-2 Hasean Clinton-Dix Alabama 3Jr
2nd Jimmie Ward Northern Illinois 4Sr
3rd Keith McGill Utah 4Sr
3-4 Terrence Brooks Florida State 4Sr
3rd Ed Reynolds Stanford 4Jr
3rd Deone Bucannon Washington State 4Sr
4th Dezmen Southward Wisconsin 5Sr
4th Ahmad Dixon Baylor 4Sr
4th Marqueston Huff Wyoming 4Sr
4-5 Craig Loston LSU 5Sr
6th Dion Bailey USC 4Jr
6th Isaiah Lewis Michigan State 4Sr
6th Antone Exum Virginia Tech 5Sr
6th Tre Boston North Carolina 4Sr
5th Kenny Ladler Vanderbilt 4Sr
7th Jonathan Dowling Western Kentucky 4Jr
7th Nat Berhe San Diego State 5Sr
7th Christian Bryant Ohio State 4Sr
7-FA Alden Darby Arizona State 4Sr
7-FA Avery Patterson Oregon 5Sr
7-FA Brock Vereen Minnesota 4Sr
FA Elisha Olabode TCU 4Sr
FA Maurice Alexander Utah State 4Sr
FA Jemea Thomas Georgia Tech 5Sr
FA Vinnie Sunseri Alabama 3Jr
FA Daniel Sorensen BYU 4Sr
FA Jacques Washington Iowa State 5Sr
FA Sean Parker Washington 4Sr
FA Nickoe Whitley Mississippi State 5Sr
FA Gabe Lynn Oklahoma 5Sr
FA Ty Zimmerman Kansas State 5Sr
FA Hakeem Smith Louisville 4Sr
FA C.J. Barnett Ohio State 4Sr
FA Shamiel Gary Oklahoma State 5Sr
FA Daytawion Lowe Oklahoma State 5Sr
FA Darwin Cook West Virginia 5Sr
FA Demetruce McNeal West Alabama 4Sr
FA Brian Jackson Oregon 4Sr
FA Jerry Gates Bowling Green 4Sr
FA Sam Holl Baylor 4Sr
FA JaQuez Jenkins South Florida 5Sr
FA Mycal Swaim Eastern Michigan 4Sr
FA Jay Scott SMU 5Sr
FA Johnnie Simon Western Michigan 4Sr
FA Terrance Bullitt Texas Tech 5Sr
FA Thomas Gordon Michigan 5Sr
FA John Pillow Florida A&M 4Sr
FA Adrian Phillips Texas 4Sr
FA Greg Heban Indiana 5Sr
FA Dewey McDonald California-PA 5Sr
FA Parker Orms Colorado 5Sr
FA Tre’ Porter Texas Tech 4Sr
FA Cameron Loeffler Jackson State 4Sr
FA Jerome Couplin William & Mary 5Sr
FA Richard Spencer UTEP 5Sr
FA Jeremy Deering Rutgers 4Sr
FA Mark Joyce South Florida 4Sr
FA Bert White Northwestern State 4Sr
FA John Ojo Florida A&M 6Sr
FA Deon Broomfield Iowa State 5Sr
FA LJ McCray Catawba 5Sr
FA Juwan Thompson Duke 4Sr
FA Avery Cunningham Central Michigan 4Sr
FA Stephen Obeng-Agyapong Penn State 5Sr
FA Fred Gaines East Central 5Sr
FA Malcolm Willis Penn State 5Sr
FA Jestin Love Central Arkansas 5Sr
FA Chip Thompson East Carolina 4Sr
FA Jamill Lott Jacksonville State 5Sr
FA Eric Pinkins San Diego State 5Sr
FA Paul Porras Rice 5Sr
FA Kacy Rodgers II Miami-Fl 4Sr
FA Javon Marshall Vanderbilt
FA A.J. Marshall Wake Forest 4Sr
FA Tanner Miller Iowa 4Sr
FA Ryan Shaw Arkansas-Pine Bluff 4Sr
FA Pierre Warren Jacksonville State 3Jr
FA Deionte Gordon Central Washington 6Sr
7th Eric Bennett Arkansas 4Sr
FA Byron Moore Tennessee 5Sr
FA Brian Blechen Utah 4Sr
FA Dexter Moody Albany State 5Sr
FA Duran Lowe Wake Forest 5Sr

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