The Pittsburgh Panthers had a nice year under second-year head coach Paul Chryst. This team features several intriguing NFL prospects looking to finish their career on a positive note. As for Bowling Green, safety Jerry Gates is the only one gaining any real NFL attention. Jon Dove looks at the top pro-prospects in this contest.
Aaron Donald/DT/Pittsburgh: Aaron Donald has enjoyed a highly impactful college career. His ability to make plays behind the line of scrimmage helped Pittsburgh pull out more than a few wins. Donald relies on his awareness and solid first step to wreak havoc in the offensive backfield. NFL teams are always looking for disruptive defensive linemen and Donald fits the bill. The issue is that he lacks the size and elite quickness considered important for evaluators. He’s in no-man’s land as far as his next-level position is concerned. Donald doesn’t have the size to consistent hold up against the run as a defensive tackle. He also lacks the quickness to move outside to defensive end in a 4-3 alignment. His best fit might be as a situational player who’s counted on to penetrate the pocket. 4th Round
Jason Hendricks/S/Pittsburgh: The key word to describe Jason Hendricks is solid because he’s someone who does just about everything well. This is a smart and aggressive safety who contributes as a run defender, in pass coverage and on special teams. His awareness allows him to read developing plays in both the run and passing game. Hendricks is typically asked to play in deep coverage but has the quickness to attack the line of scrimmage and uses proper angles to support the run. In coverage, he keeps things in front of him and shows the range to cover sideline to sideline. However, he needs to rely on his ability to read routes because he lacks elite closing speed. 4th/5th Round
Devin Street/WR/Pittsburgh: Devin Street is a solid college receiver who had a very good career at Pittsburgh. However, he doesn’t have a particular skill that stands out. His limited explosiveness limits his ability to make plays down the field and generate consistent separation. Street is a little leggy in his movement which helps defensive backs identify his route and break on the ball. This is just a player who doesn’t have the type of athleticism needed to develop into contributor at the next level. 6th Round
Tom Savage/QB/Pittsburgh: Tom Savage has had an interesting college career going from a freshman starter at Rutgers, spending time at Arizona and finally winning the starting job this past season in Pittsburgh. He has always had good arm talent but struggled to pick up the mental part of the game. Savage showed that raw ability this year, but too often made poor reads which resulted in a high number of turnovers. 7th/FA