2012 NFL Draft: 7 Players Who've Hurt Their Stock
It hasn't even been a month since the 2011 college football season has ended, but there have already been big shake-ups on draft boards because of the Senior Bowl (along with a few other things).
Some players, like Ohio State's Mike Adams and Wisconsin's Russell Wilson, have risen on draft boards, while some have done the opposite. This slideshow is about players in the latter category.
1. Dre Kirkpatrick, CB, Alabama
However, I think this will only marginally affect his stock.
Alfonzo Dennard looked bad in the Senior Bowl (more on that later) and Janoris Jenkins is short and has had way more arrests than Kirkpatrick. If a team wanted to select a corner, their options would be to risk Kirkpatrick, take a Dennard that didn't look good in the Senior Bowl or take an even bigger character risk with Janoris Jenkins.
It might make a corner-hungry team consider drafting a different position, but unless Dennard blows up the combine and his pro day, Kirkpatrick will still be the second corner off the board.
2. Will Vlachos, C, Alabama
While we're on Alabama players, Will Vlachos hurt his stock a bit too in Senior Bowl week. At the weigh-in, Vlachos looked pretty flabby, and even so, he only weighed in at 305 lbs.
At just fractions of an inch over 6' tall, Vlachos is going to need to bulk up (with muscle, not fat) to not be considered undersized for the NFL.
Then he looked bad in practices as well. He lost most of his matchups and looked unathletic. He needs to hit the gym hard before the combine and his pro day if he wants to recover his lost draft stock.
3. Zebrie Sanders, OT, Florida State
I was never sold on Zebrie Sanders as a legitimate high-end tackle prospect. The only reason he was hyped at all was because Andrew Datko, the starting left tackle for Florida State, suffered a season-ending shoulder injury, so the spotlight shined on Sanders.
Senior Bowl week, however, he proved me right. He was beaten consistently when matched up with Vinny Curry, Courtney Upshaw, Melvin Ingram and Quinton Coples on both speed rushes and bull rushes. The only wins he got were against no-namers.
Sanders is still a mid-round pick, but that seems to be all he is. He'd certainly help a team that needed depth at tackle though.
4. Jeff Fuller, WR, Texas A&M
Jeff Fuller looked bad from the beginning of Senior Bowl coverage all the way through the end. He was a third-round prospect before Senior Bowl week, but now he's dropped further.
He didn't run routes well, he dropped passes, he was blanketed by the corners around him. You name it, he did it poorly.
With that kind of performance, Fuller has without a doubt dropped into the third day of the draft now. It's kind of sad; at the season's beginning, he was considered a second-rounder.
Because he performed well early in the season, if he can improve (a lot) by the time the combine rolls around, he can recover some of his draft stock, but a lot of damage has been done.
5. Alfonzo Dennard, CB, Nebraska
Alfonzo Dennard had a lot of great tape through the regular season, but he looked awfully stiff during the Senior Bowl and struggled in man-coverage.
The problem was that he looked that way all week in practices, which will scare a lot of teams away. Furthermore, Janoris Jenkins had a great week, as did Casey Hayward.
Dennard is still one of the top corner prospects; he just might fall out of the first round with a bad week of practices. Of course, a team that runs a zone coverage system may not worry much and take him in the first round anyway.
Dennard will still be a very high pick, just not as high as he would've been had he had a better week.
6. Chris Polk, RB, Washington
At the season's end, I had Chris Polk as the third-best running back on my big board, behind Trent Richardson and Lamar Miller. After his Senior Bowl performance, that will certainly change.
Polk looked out of shape during the Senior Bowl. He was slow, he seemed to tire quickly and he couldn't cut. He needs to lose some weight by the combine.
Luckily for Polk, at 224 lbs. he has a lot of weight that he can lose before it hurts him. The question is can he lose that much weight in time? Then of course, even if he does lose 10 or 15 lbs. by the time the combine rolls around, he still may not be quick enough to garner an early selection.
7. Ryan Tannehill, QB, Texas A&M
Just so this isn't a list of players who did poorly in the Senior Bowl, I'm including Ryan Tannehill.
Tannehill broke his foot a few weeks ago, and is going to be out of commission for a while. He might even miss the combine, which would've really helped him after his up-and-down performance this season.
Tannehill is ranked as the third quarterback prospect (behind Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III) on most big boards, but a solid performance in the Senior Bowl could've really helped him. Instead, scouts watched Russell Wilson tear it up in practices and during the game itself, which raised his stock.
Tannehill's stock isn't really hurt, I guess, but he did miss what would've been a huge opportunity to raise it even higher.
He'll have to look great on his pro day if he wants a team to take a chance on him in the first round.