Cotton Bowl 2013: Players Who Will Impress NFL Scouts with Big Performances

Tim KeeneyContributor IMarch 24, 2017

COLLEGE STATION, TX - OCTOBER 15: Damontre Moore #94 of the Texas A&M Aggies celebrates after a play during a game against the Baylor Bears at Kyle Field on October 15, 2011 in College Station, Texas. The Texas A&M Aggies defeated the Baylor Bears 55-28. (Photo by Sarah Glenn/Getty Images)
Sarah Glenn/Getty Images

When Texas A&M and Oklahoma do battle in the Cotton Bowl on Friday night, most eyes will be on Johnny Manziel.

It's not difficult to see why, either.

Johnny Football is the first freshman to ever win the Heisman. He has been to college football what Andrew Luck, Robert Griffin III and Russell Wilson have been to the NFL. He is an otherworldly talent who has a chance to be the best collegiate player of all time. 

Yeah, I'd say that makes him a decently attractive sight for most fans at Cowboy Stadium.

But Manziel is just a baby. With just two years of college experience under his belt, he isn't yet eligible to be drafted. Instead, NFL scouts in attendance will first and foremost be concentrating on these potential studs. 



Luke Joeckel, OT, Texas A&M

While Manziel gets most of the attention, he likely wouldn't be the owner of the most prestigious award in college football if it weren't for his elite offensive line.

Right tackle Jake Matthews could potentially see his stock soar as high as the first 10 picks with a big game against the Sooners, but Joeckel is the one all scouts will be truly smitten with. 

For an idea about Joeckel's ceiling, check out this bold statement from Bleacher Report's Matt Miller:

Bottom-line (because I get asked a lot): Luke Joeckel is a better LT prospect than Joe Thomas, Jake Long or Matt Kalil were. Write it down.

— Matt Miller (@nfldraftscout) December 31, 2012

It's unlikely the Kansas City Chiefs will be in the market for a left tackle with their top pick, but Joeckel has the size, speed, athleticism and versatility in all aspects of the game to completely dominate Oklahoma's front seven.

Should he do that, he'll garner a lot of serious talk about being the No. 1 overall pick.



Landry Jones, QB, Oklahoma

Who? Landry Jones. Who? Landry Jones.

Jones' stock will never be as high as it was in the middle of last season, but quarterbacks will always be at a premium and this year's class is far from elite.

As such, Oklahoma's signal-caller has the opportunity to skyrocket up draft boards more than anyone else in this game.

Should he have a mediocre game, he'll likely remain as a middle-round pick. But if he picks apart an Aggies defense that brings a lot of pressure, Jones, who has broken several Big 12 passing records during his career, will find himself among the first five quarterbacks taken. 



Damontre Moore, DE, Texas A&M

Speaking of skyrocketing up draft boards.

Moore didn't enter the season with a lot of hype, but after racking up 80 total tackles, 20 for a loss, 12.5 sacks and multiple nightmares caused for offensive linemen, the ferocious junior is suddenly being talked about as a top-five pick.

He clearly has the size and speed to get around the edge and cause mayhem in the backfield. He is effective against the run. He has versatility, as he played outside linebacker in a 3-4 scheme last year and defensive end in a 4-3 this season.

Moore is simply the total package, and he'll showcase that on Friday against Oklahoma in his last collegiate game.