Alabama sits atop my draft board of the best NFL prospects in the SEC but their western division foe Mississippi is strong with three of the top six prospects in the conference. Here are rankings, ratings and notes on 168 NFL prospects from the SEC.
|1st||Germain Ifedi||T||Texas A&M||4Jr|
|2nd||Ricky Seals-Jones||WR||Texas A&M||3So|
|2nd||Da’Runnya Wilson||WR||Mississippi St||3Jr|
|2nd||Will Redmond||CB||Mississippi St||5Sr|
|3rd||Ben Brown||ILB||Mississippi St||4Jr|
|3rd||Josh Reynolds||WR||Texas A&M||3Jr|
|3rd||Shaan Washington||OLB||Texas A&M||3Jr|
|4th||Dak Prescott||QB||Mississippi St||5Sr|
|4th||Taveze Calhoun||CB||Mississippi St||5Sr|
|4-5||Zach Jones||S||Mississippi St||5Sr|
|4-5||Pharoh Cooper||WR||South Carolina||3Jr|
|5th||Kendrick Market||S||Mississippi St||5Sr|
|5th||Tra Carson||RB||Texas A&M||5Sr|
|5th||Andrew Kaser||P||Texas A&M||5Sr|
|6th||Michael Matthews||C||Texas A&M||4Sr|
|6th||Brandon Shell||T||South Carolina||5Sr|
|6th||De’Vante Harris||CB||Texas A&M||4Sr|
|6th||Justin Senior||T||Mississippi St||4Jr|
|6th||Joseph Cheek||G||Texas A&M||5Sr|
|6th||Isaiah Johnson||S||South Carolina||5Sr|
|6th||Brandon Wilds||RB||South Carolina||5Sr|
|6-7||Darius English||DE||South Carolina||4Jr|
|6-7||Chris Moody||S||South Carolina||4Jr|
|7th||Jerell Adams||TE||South Carolina||4Sr|
|7-FA||Chris Jones||DT||Mississippi St||3Jr|
|FA||Nick James||DT||Mississippi St||4Jr|
|FA||Alonzo Williams||DT||Texas A&M||4Sr|
|FA||Justin Malone||G||Mississippi St||5Sr|
|FA||Chaz Elder||S||South Carolina||4Jr|
|FA||Brandon Williams||RB||Texas A&M||5Sr|
|FA||Ralph Abernathy IV||RB||Tennessee||5Sr|
|FA||Timothy Gurley||S||South Carolina||4Sr|
|FA||Gerald Dixon Jr||DT||South Carolina||5Sr|
|FA||Ryan Brown||DE||Mississippi St||4Sr|
|FA||Gerald Dixon||DT||South Carolina||4Jr|
|FA||Julien Obioha||DE||Texas A&M||4Sr|
|FA||Devonta Burns||S||Texas A&M||5Sr|
|FA||Joe Morrow||WR||Mississippi St||5Sr|
As usual the Tide is loaded with top prospects and junior A’Shawn Robinson sits atop my board in the SEC.
The big defensive tackle is a space eater with both power and movement skills. He can occupy the gaps or make plays behind the line of scrimmage as well as outside the box. Sources tell me they fully expect Robinson to enter the 2016 draft and word in the agent community is he’s already picked his representative, something not all that unusual.
My opinion of Dennis Pettway (6th/7th round area) differs from scouts (street free agent). Though he lacks great measurables Pettway is constantly around the action making positive plays. They’ll be a place for him in the NFL, likely as a three technique tackle.
The strength of the Razorbacks next level prospects can be found in the junior class.
Hunter Henry is an athletic pass catching tight end who consistently creates mismatches downfield.
Dan Skipper is a lot more than just a big body at tackle rather a surprisingly fluid athlete who can block the edge or dominate run blocking.
Keep an eye on receiver Keon Hatcher. He has shown flashes of next level ability the past two seasons and was quietly productive in 2014. He comes with average size/speed numbers but enough skill to line-up as a fifth receiver on Sunday.
I believe Shon Coleman has all the makings to be the next big time offensive line prospect from Auburn. He combines the size, strength and the athleticism to start at left tackle on Sunday’s.
From a size/speed point of view Cassanova Mckinzy does not measure up but he’s a disruptive defender and a terrific prospect that can be moved around the front seven by a creative NFL coordinator.
Kris Frost possesses next level mesurables but has shown a degree of inconsistency on the field. He played like a big time prospect in 2013 but never elevated his game last season.
There’s a lot of love in the scouting community for D’Haquille Williams as he possesses awesome size/speed numbers. In my opinion he also comes with an incredibly consistent game and is more athlete than polished receiver to this point.
To a man most scouts feel the cornerback duo of Brian Poole and Vernon Hargreaves are significantly overrated. Poole is considered a late ronder by scouts and Hargreaves is not mentioned on a number of underclassmen lists teams have assembled.
On the other hand Neal Keanu is a Gators secondary prospect that does not receive the credit he’s due. The productive safety stands out defending the run as well as covering the pass and rarely has breakdowns on the field. I’m a fan of his game though his next level grade will largely depend on works out prior to the draft. He reminds me of former Gators safety Major Wright.
I’ve been a proponent of Leonard Floyd since the end of his freshman season and feel he has top twelve potential. The way he finished the season last year was a concern as Floyd was non-existent for long stretches. Despite rumblings he would enter April’s draft he made the correct decision by returning for another year. Word from Athens is the talented defender will be used at several linebacker positions this season, which will only enhance his draft stock if he responds with production and consistency.
I’m told scouts like offensive lineman John Theus as a middle round choice but I don’t see it. He’s a servicable tackle but lacks the athleticism and footwork for the left side as well as the brute strength necessary to line up at right tackle.
Jordan Swindle is another SEC offensive lineman scouts think highly of. He’s relatively athletic on film showing the ability to block on the second level and control opponents at the point. That said he lacks footwork in pass protection, must improve his playing balance and consistently block with proper fundamentals.
Linebacker Josh Forest has terrific measurables and plays fierce, aggressive football but needs to develop a complete game. He moves with speed in all directions of the field, covers a good amount of area and is effective in both coverage and pursuit. Forest is not a strong open field tackler and at times has ball carriers running through his arms.
Its amazing how LSU is able to reload every year despite the mass exodus of underclassmen talent that’s becoming an annual ritual.
Tre’Davious White has big time talent and is poised to be the best next level corner from LSU since Patrick Peterson. He comes with better than average size, solid ball skills and makes plays with his back to the ball. If he pulls it together he’ll move into the top half of round one.
I love Kendell Beckwith’s explosion, tenacity and ability to make plays sideline to sideline as well as his instincts. I’d also love to know what his true computer numbers are.
Jerald Hawkins is a blocker that’s been highly considered on my board for the past two years. He’s a natural right tackle with better than average skills in pass protection.
The great recruiting classes ‘Ole Miss has signed in recent years will finally have an effect in NFL war rooms next April.
LaQuon Treadwell is the big, dominant receiver that projects well in today’s NFL. He’s smooth, almost graceful with natural hands and projects as a number one at the next level if he’s able to get back on track after his horrendous injury from late last season.
A lot has been said about tackle Laremy Tunsil lately, a prospect with great upside. Explosive at the point of attack, he displays enough footwork to slide off the edge on the left side as well as the strength to drive opponents off the line as a strong side run blocker. Tunsil still needs a bit of work on his game as he’s very inconsistent with his mechanics.
Tony Conner is a defensive back who does not receive due credit in my opinion. Conner, who can line up at safety or cornerback, is well sized, aggressive and comes with solid ball skills. I grade him as a third rounder but he has the talent to move into the second frame if he continues to improve.
Da’Runnya Wilson is another big time game controlling receiver from the Magnolia State. Like his counter part from ‘Ole Miss, Wilson physically beats down opponents and dominates the opposition.
Scouts love cornerback Will Redmond and though the overall talent is available, I don’t rank him as one of the better senior corners at this point.
Conversely I believe Taveze Calhoun, who was slowed by an ankle injury last season, is significantly overlooked. His ball skills and instincts are on a par with Redmond’s and I dare say Calhoun is more consistent.
Keep an eye on Ben Brown, a complete three down defender that offers second day potential.
Harold Brantley flashes big time ability on the inside at defensive tackle and will be the focus of opponents this season considering junior defections and graduations on the Tigers line. He’s explosive as well as athletic and can be very tough to handle.
Evan Boehm could contend for the top center spot next April. He’s a complete center that’s been very productive on the college level.
Expect a drop off in draftable talent coming from the South Carolina program the next few years compared to what its been in the past.
Possibly the most intriguing prospect is tight end Jerell Adams, who scouts feel is middle round value. Adams offers size (6-feet, 5-inches/230+ pounds), speed (4.6’s) and growth potential. What he lacks is productivity and a body of work. The potential is there for Adams to make a move up draft boards with a big senior season.
At one time I graded Chaz Elder as a potential last day pick but his game has fallen off and the big-bodied safety was almost non-existent last season.
The next level talent on the Volunteers roster offers a lot of upside.
Curt Maggitt is a physical specimen who flashes brilliance but needs to round out his game. I’ve stamped him as a fourth rounder but a top 75 selection is a possibility with a good campaign.
Corners Cam Sutton and receiver Marquiz North are pair of juniors with the potential to rise up draft boards.
I’ll be closely watching Ralph Abernathy IV, the versatile skill player who transferred from Cincinnati. Abernathy, who’s been ignored by scouts, can line up at receiver, in the backfield and help out as a return specialist.
This time last year I wrote glowingly about then offensive guard Germain Ifedi and predicted he was the next great offensive line prospect from A&M. I was even more impressed watching him at right tackle in 2014 and feel he’s being vastly underrated. Ifedi possesses the footwork and mobility to pass protect as well as the athleticism to block in motion. Though he needs to improve his run blocking strength Ifedi has the makings of a starting tackle at the next level who can play on the either left or right side. Word at present time is Ifedi will enter the 2016 NFL draft.
Ricky Seals-Jones is yet another big-bodied game controlling receiver from the SEC and a prospect with the ability to develop into a first rounder. Reynolds plays strong and shows a lot of consistency on the field.
Scouts I’ve spoken with view Tra Carson as a free agent prospect but I disagree and feel he could end up in the middle part of day three. He has the size and style to pound opponents on the inside but also enough short area quickness to evade defenders or piles.
Not a whole lot to get excited about at Vandy.
Scouts feel tight end Steve Scheu could develop into a late rounder but I feel his blocking is average and his speed is subpar.
Andrew Jelks, the high revving defensive tackle, is out of position in college and could get serious looks at middle linebacker next summer.