2012 NFL Draft: Dontari Poe and Other Prospects Who Will Become Massive Flops

Nick HartCorrespondent IApril 23, 2012

COLLEGE STATION, TX - NOVEMBER 24:  Ryan Tannehill #17 of the Texas A&M Aggies throws a pass against the Texas Longhorns in the second half of a game at Kyle Field on November 24, 2011 in College Station, Texas. (Photo by Darren Carroll/Getty Images)
Darren Carroll/Getty Images

The 2012 NFL Draft is fast approaching, and NFL teams are putting in the work to identify future NFL stars.  Even with all the effort that NFL teams put into the draft, there are still plenty of questionable prospects who get drafted, and many turn into busts.  Here are three of the most questionable prospects and why they will turn into massive flops.

Ryan Tannehill

Ryan Tannehill is expected to be a first-round pick in the upcoming 2012 NFL Draft and could potentially go as high as No. 4 to the Cleveland Browns.  Tannehill has all of the physical tools that teams want out of their quarterbacks: size, arm strength, accuracy and mobility.  Physically, Ryan Tannehill is the total package.  However, there are numerous flaws in the mental aspect of Tannehill’s game that make him a major risk come draft day.

Tannehill only started 19 games at quarterback for Texas A&M and actually began his career playing wide receiver.  That is the equivalent of a season-and-a-half making him woefully inexperienced.  In addition to his inexperience, Tannehill also struggled with turnovers throwing 15 interceptions during the 2011 season.  Fifteen interceptions in 13 games demonstrates poor decision making.  With three-interception games against Oklahoma State, Oklahoma and Texas, it is also clear that Tannehill struggles against elite competition. 

Tannehill’s mental flaws are what make him a questionable prospect.  His poor decision making will be compounded against elite NFL defenses, and his struggles against elite college defenses will only be amplified playing against NFL talent.  Ultimately, it is his poor decision making and inexperience that will make him a massive flop.

Quinton Coples

BLACKSBURG, VIRGINIA - NOVEMBER 17:  Quarterback Logan Thomas #3 of the Virginia Tech Hokies is tackled by defensive end Quinton Coples #90 of the North Carolina Tar Heels at Lane Stadium on November 17, 2011 in Blacksburg, Virginia. (Photo by Geoff Burke
Geoff Burke/Getty Images

Quinton Coples has all of the physical attributes an NFL team looks for in a defensive end.  He has the size, speed and power to absolutely dominate tackles at the NFL level.  It is because of these physical abilities that Coples is expected to go somewhere in the middle part of the first round.  However, Coples struggles mentally, and there are questions about his effort.

It is Coples's lack of motor and consistent effort that will ensure that he is a massive flop.  Success in the NFL is contingent on effort, hard work and perseverance, traits that Coples clearly lacks.  If he is unable to give maximum effort while in college when he is playing for his draft position and future, where is the incentive to perform to the best of his abilities after he has been paid?  It is ludicrous to expect Coples to suddenly exert maximum effort after he has made it into the league.

Dontari Poe

Dontari Poe also has all of the physical tools that NFL front offices look for in defensive tackles.  He’s huge yet still posses the speed and agility of someone much smaller.  He’s also incredibly strong and powerful.  Poe is coming off one of the most dominant combine performances in recent memory, vaulting him up many draft boards.  While his combine showing was impressive, his lack of production is troubling.

For a player of Poe’s size and ability, it is disconcerting that he managed only 33 tackles, eight tackles for a loss, and one sack during the 2011 season.  Playing in Conference USA, Poe should have feasted on opposing offensive linemen.  His lack of production raises questions regarding his effort and motor as well as his technique.  This combination of average effort and below average technique will ensure that Poe struggles in the NFL and ultimately becomes a major flop.