Stanford hopes to make a return trip to the Rose Bowl while Arizona State could be smelling roses for the first time in a while.  The talent level on the Sun Devils roster is deficient compared to Stanford, yet both teams offer prospects that have caught the interest of NFL teams.



David Yankey/G/Stanford: David Yankey is a powerful offensive lineman who excels at driving defenders off the line of scrimmage. He uses a combination of leverage, inside hands, a quick first step and a powerful leg drive to consistently open running lanes. Yankey also has the balance, fluid movements and anchor to hold up in pass protection.   He brings added value because of his past experience playing left tackle. While not his ideal fit, Yankey can fill in at tackle if an injury should occur at some point in the season.   1st Round

Will Sutton/DT/ Arizona State: Will Sutton doesn’t have great measurables, but he continues to produce on a consistent basis. He consistently wreaks havoc in the backfield and disrupts the timing of the offense. Sutton uses his snap awareness, explosive first step and violent hands to put himself in position to make plays.  He’s also isn’t just a player who focuses on shooting the gap as he also has the strength and balance to anchor at the point of attack. Sutton can occupy blockers, disengage and make plays away from his frame. His motor is also something that needs to be mentioned. He is constantly in pursuit of the ball and giving 100% effort.  2nd Round

Carl Bradford/LB/Arizona State: Carl Bradford is a really interesting prospect because of his versatility. He has experience playing several positions including defensive end, outside linebacker and inside linebacker. The key to his overall draft stock will rely on what position NFL teams feel is his best fit.   I personally would love to see Bradford used in a traditional linebacker role. He features the balance to hold up in coverage, the quickness to make plays from sideline to sideline and the instincts to diagnosis post-snap information. His ability to rush the passer is an added bonus because Bradford could fill a role similar to the one the Denver Broncos have carved out for Von Miller. 2nd Round

Shayne Skov/LB/Stanford: Shayne Skov is having a major bounce back season after dealing with a slow recover from a knee injury suffered two years ago. This return to form can be directly attributed to the fact he has regained much of his explosiveness. Skov is now able to make more plays from sideline to sideline and behind the line of scrimmage.   He always featured a good feel for the position but now he’s able to reach the ball carrier much quicker. It’s also important to note that he looks more comfortable and confident on the field. His draft stock will be helped by the fact that he’s scheme versatile in that he fits in either a 3-4 or 4-3 attack.  3rd Round

Robert Nelson|/CB/Arizona State: Robert Nelson is flying under the radar and deserves more hype as a draft prospect. He’s an excellent athlete who features fluid movements, good long speed and the balance to quickly close on the football. While he doesn’t have great overall size, Nelson has long arms which he uses to attack the ball at its highest point. Nelson is a threat to generate turnovers because he quickly gets his head turned around to locate the ball and possesses good hands. This is a player who’ll fit in either a man or zone coverage. He has experience using a trail technique where his speed and ball skills come into play.   His balance and quick burst are what helps him excel in zone coverage. Nelson also shows the instincts needed to read the quarterback and jump routes.  3rd Round

Trent Murphy|/DE-OLB/Stanford: Trent Murphy is one of those players who does everything well but nothing really spectacular. Stanford uses him in a hybrid defensive end/linebacker role where he’s asked to set the edge against the run and rush the passer.   Murphy generates pressure on the quarterback thanks to his snap awareness, good hand usage and balance. The issue is that he doesn’t feature a great burst off the line or the second gear needed to close on the quarterback.   There’s a spot at the next level for Murphy, but he might be one of those players a team is always looking to replace with a higher-upside player. 4th Round

Marion Grice/RB/Arizona State: Marion Grice is the type of running back who’ll fit in today’s NFL offenses that like to feature pass-heavy attack. He’s a terrific receiver out of the backfield and is committed to squaring his body in pass protection. As a runner, Grice does a great job picking his way through traffic and using his second gear to break off big chunks of yardage.  The one negative surrounding Grice’s game at this point is that he doesn’t run with a ton of power. He’s also use to working in a spread offense where spacing creates some obvious running lanes. 4th Round

Josh Mauro/DE/Stanford: Josh Mauro is a strong and athletic defensive end prospect. His best fit at the next level will be as a five-technique in a 3-4 alignment. Mauro possesses the ability to set the edge against the run, play two-gap football and also generate some pressure on the quarterback. I have concerns about his change of direction skills which limit his potential as a pass rusher. 4th Round