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D2Football.com Pro Hopefuls

Discussion in 'Draft Zone' started by cowboyjoe, Apr 24, 2009.

  1. cowboyjoe

    cowboyjoe Well-Known Member

    28,104 Messages
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    D2Football.com Pro Hopefuls
    http://www.d2football.com/prohopefuls/


    2008
    Billy Malone
    Quarterback
    Abilene Christian
    6'2, 236lbs
    4.98-5.08 40.

    Analysis
    Malone, a second team All-American by D2football.com, threw for 3,213 yards and 36 touchdowns with just eight picks as the strong armed pocket passer closed out his career on a strong note. Malone is an older prospect who will need developmental time at the next level. He is certainly a prospect to watch for in training camp as he possesses the tools to make it as a free agent.

    Projection
    Coming from a small school at his age makes it tough to get drafted and thus it is likely he lands a contract as a priority free agent early at the conclusion of the draft.



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    Keith Null
    Quarterback
    West Texas A&M
    6'3, 232lbs
    4.95-5.00 40.

    Analysis
    Null has been in the shadow of Malone and Reilly over the last two years despite out producing them as a senior with 5,097 yards and 48 touchdowns on his way to earning honorable mention All-America honors by D2football.com. One thing that showed on tape was his inconsistency as he will throw more picks (15) than you would like and sometimes forces throws he should not attempt.

    Projection
    Some consider him a draftable player while others see him as a free agent. He is a sleeper that could go late in the 7th round but is likely a free agent.



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    Mike Reilly
    Quarterback
    C. Washington
    6'3, 212lbs
    4.74/4.75 40

    Analysis
    Reilly was named a first team All-American by D2football.com after throwing for 3,706 yards and 37 touchdowns, with just six picks last season. His production over his four years at CWU are mind boggling but some feel he is a product of the system with just adequate arm strength. Bulking up and working on his reads should be his top priorities as he must improve on both to get on the field in the NFL. Recently married, he possesses the maturity and intelligence to be a solid developmental prospect.

    Projection
    His below average performance at the combine and East-West Shrine were redeemed somewhat at his pro day but he did show that some development is necessary for his chances at the next level. Usually developmental quarterbacks like Reilly hear their names called in the late rounds and that is precisely where Reilly is expected to go. A few teams really like him and might reach for him in the 5th or early 6th round though.



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    Bernard Scott
    Running Back
    Abilene Christian
    5'11, 195lbs
    4.44/4.50 40

    Analysis
    Scott was named the Harlon Hill Trophy winner and D2football.com Offensive Player of the Year after rushing for 2,156 yards and 28 touchdowns. Not just a runner, Scott caught 47 balls for 826 yards and six touchdowns as well. His hands, balance, vision, and speed made him a nightmare for defensive coordinators. Scott will need to bulk up to take the pounding at the NFL level though.

    Projection
    A third or fourth round projection is what Scott would be looking at if not for his off field issues that saw him bounce from school to school. Most players with his off field issues would have no shot at getting drafted but he proved in the postseason he is one of the better backs in this class. Don't expect to hear this first day talent's name called in the first 100 picks but don't be surprised if he beats the odds and goes in the mid to late rounds.



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    Branden Ore
    Running Back
    West Liberty
    5'11, 214lbs
    4.63-4.69 40.

    Analysis
    Ore transferred from Virginia Tech after some off field incidents cause his dismissal from the program. Some projected him to go as high as the fourth round before his dismissal and his talent certainly showed this year as he ran for 1,257 yards and 20 touchdowns as a senior. Despite the off field issues he was considered a potential draft pick in December as he was invited to the NFL Scouting Combine. He showed less than impressive speed (4.63) and did not stand out in the rest of his postseason events.

    Projection
    Due to some incidents in the postseason it is unlikely he is drafted but will surely be signed early after the draft.



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    Charly Martin
    Wide Receiver
    West Texas A&M
    6'1, 205lbs
    4.60-4.63 40.

    Analysis
    Martin earned first team All-America honors by D2football.com and was possibly the best receiver in D2 over the course of the regular season with 1,867 yards and 22 touchdowns, averaging 19.6 yards per catch. His lack of top end speed does hurt but he catches the ball very well and has good size.

    Projection
    It was a mistake for him not to run for scouts at the Cactus Bowl and there has been no updated 40 time I have been able to obtain to upgrade him from priority free agent status. Had he ran in the 4.5s he would have likely been drafted but is now a likely free agent.



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    Ed Gant
    Wide Receiver
    North Alabama
    6'2, 197lbs
    4.41-4.50 40.
    Analysis
    Gant fell below the radar for most of the year as he did not earn All-America accolades or an invite to the combine or a major all-star game. UNA had a very talented receiving corps that caused him and teammate Rocky Coleman to have much lower numbers than their talent would indicate. He caught 27 balls for 595 yards and 10 touchdowns with 11 carries for 55 yards on the year. Gant was a big play threat who possesses the upside and speed to be a very good 4th or 5th receiver in the NFL.

    Projection
    His performance at the Cactus Bowl practices and his pro day have pushed him up boards and thus earned him a spot on this list. Gant has the athletic ability and hands to be a solid acquisition either late in the draft or as a free agent. He is projected to be a priority free agent but his athletic ability could possibly sneak him into the 7th round.



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    Johnny Knox
    Wide Receiver
    Abilene Christian
    6'0, 181lbs
    4.29-4.35 40.

    Analysis
    Knox earned second team All-America honors by D2football.com after posting 1,069 yards and 13 touchdowns this past season. He was the biggest riser of all the D2 players at the NFL Scouting Combine by clocking a sub 4.3 in the 40-yard dash. That was just the icing on the cake of earning himself a draft grade with teams after his senior campaign and performance at the Texas vs. the Nation game. He is quick in and out of his breaks, has outstanding speed, and is a fluid route runner. His hands are adequate but will need to improve in order for Knox to be more than a reserve in the NFL.

    Projection
    His blazing speed will likely cause some teams to project him more and possibly reach higher than the late rounds, where he was projected at the end of the season. He is a likely 4th or 5th round selection due to his blazing speed and route running.



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    Julius Pruitt
    Wide Receiver
    Ouachita Baptist
    6'2, 210lbs
    4.40-4.42 40.

    Analysis
    Pruitt had a huge senior year with 1,116 yards and 11 touchdowns on 77 catches as he earned honorable mention All-America honors by D2football.com. His performance in the postseason helped his grade as he blazed a 4.40 in the 40, which was a considerable improvement over the 4.55-4.57 that teams had on him. Pruitt brings the ideal size and good speed to the table but needs to work on route running and continue to develop.

    Projection
    Pruitt is a solid developmental prospect worth signing as a priority free agent after the draft due to the upside because of his size and speed.



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    Jared Bronson
    Tight End
    C. Washington
    6'4, 254lbs
    4.70-4.76 40.

    Analysis
    Bronson is a vertical threat with adequate blocking ability but lacks the size of an elite tight end. His production is something that can't go unnoticed as he caught 28 balls for 502 yards and six touchdowns in just eight games, due to injury. His injury, average performance in the East-West Shrine Game and slower than expected 40 time have caused his stock to level off after it rose heavily through mid-season.

    Projection
    At one time was considered a 5th or 6th round value but likely has fallen to the 7th round due to his average postseason and the depth at the tight end position.



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    Zach Miller
    TE/WR/QB
    Nebraska-Omaha
    6'4, 233lbs
    4.53-4.54 40.

    Analysis
    Miller is just one of two players on this list not named to the D2football.com All-America team but still put up impressive numbers with 1,061 yards rushing and 18 touchdowns while throwing for 1,508 yards and 11 scores. His size, strength, and athletic ability caught the eye of NFL teams and thus saw him projected to move to tight end or receiver.

    Projection
    His performance at the Cactus Bowl and pro day has almost guaranteed he will be selected in the latter rounds. He projects to go in the 7th round but could possibly go higher if a team falls in love with his potential and is scared to wait until then.



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    Roger Allen
    Guard
    Missouri Western
    6'4, 325lbs
    5.23-5.31 40.

    Analysis
    Allen is probably my favorite type of guard in this draft because of his nastiness and mean streak where he loves nothing more than to demolish opponents. He was named a first team All-American by D2football.com and invited to the NFL Scouting Combine because of his dominance. He does lack the quickness to be a prototype pass blocker and lacks the skills for pass blocking but will fit in with a pound it type of running team such as the Panthers or Broncos.

    Projection
    Allen could have possibly gone as high as the 4th round with a good combine performance but had hernia surgery and thus could not participate. His 38 reps and 5.23 40-yard dash at his pro day have forced teams go to back and look at the tape. He is a likely 5th or 6th round selection



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    Sam Allen
    Offensive Tackle
    Grand Valley
    6'5, 295lbs
    4.88-4.91 40.

    Analysis
    Allen is a very athletic player who moves well in space but was inconsistent at times throughout the year. He was named second team All-America by D2football.com for his play and was somewhat of surprise to not be invited to the NFL Scouting Combine. It would have been nice to see his athletic ability on display compared to the other linemen.

    Projection
    His pro day moved him back up the board after slipping a bit with inconsistent play at times this year. Allen is a projected priority free agent signing.



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    Sammie Lee Hill
    DT/DE
    Stillman
    6'4, 329lbs
    5.12-5.17 40.

    Analysis
    Hill finished with 15.5 tackles for loss and 7.5 sacks to earn second team All-America honors by D2football.com. He did not run quite as fast as I hoped but still runs very well for someone his size and has the bulk to move inside at the next level and give centers and guards matchup nightmares because of his freakish athletic ability. He is very raw and a solid developmental type prospect that will need time to adjust to moving inside.

    Projection
    Hill is a late round projection because of concerns over laziness, moving to another position, and inconsistency. He is a raw beast with 3rd-4th round potential but those concerns likely keep him from sneaking much higher.



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    Dan Skuta
    ILB/DL/FB
    Grand Valley
    6'3, 249lbs
    4.72-4.76 40.

    Analysis
    Skuta is my favorite player to watch among the defensive prospects here because of his versatility, speed, and constant motor. He lined up at end, both tackle spots, and linebacker during his senior year and wreaked havoc on opponents. He earned national defensive player of the year and first team All-America honors by D2football.com after posting 14 tackles for loss and 10.5 sacks.

    Projection
    Skuta was one of about two or three players who really opened eyes at the Cactus Bowl to solidify what I thought from senior tape I watched during the fall. He is the type of player a team like the New England Patriots draft and use as a matchup problem for opponents. He projects as a 6th or 7th round selection.



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    Greg Toler
    Cornerback
    St. Paul's
    5'11, 191lbs
    4.45-4.50 40.

    Analysis
    Toler was named a first team All-American by D2football.com after tallying 51 tackles, 6 interceptions, and 13 pass breakups. The selection was considered a surprise at the time but since his stellar postseason performance the selection has been more than validated. He also blocked three kicks to show his value on special teams. There was a slight buzz on him during the year but not nearly what it has been in the last couple months leading up to the draft. He started raising his stock with his performance at the East Coast Bowl and then solidified what scouts were starting to think with his play at the Cactus Bowl (4 TT, 1 INT) and his eye opening pro day.

    Projection
    He is likely to be the first player ever drafted from St. Paul's due to his upside, athletic ability, and the fact he possesses the size that teams are looking for. His pro day performance likely moved him from a fringe draft prospect to a mid round selection.

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