Alabama vs. Notre Dame: Draft Stocks Affected by Championship Game
After a less than epic championship bout between Alabama and Notre Dame, it's time to survey the damage. With many a prospect playing in this contest, there were a number of draft stocks affected by the game.
The Crimson Tide's unexpected explosion on offense sent a ripple through draft boards, aiding the stock of quite a few Alabama players.
Of course that same ripple has taken a shot to some of Notre Dame's players. It's not all bad, with some of the Irish finding ways to standout in the blowout.
Here's a look at a few draft stocks affected by the BCS Championship game.
Eddie Lacy, RB
Junior running back Eddie Lacy provided the brunt of Alabama's offense assault against the Irish, rushing for 140 yards on 20 carries with one touchdown.
Lacy could look to join Mark Ingram and Trent Richardson as Alabama running backs taken in the first round of the draft in back-to-back-to-back years.
Unfortunately, the running back class is particularly thin this year. Lacy might not be able to bound into Round 1, but his performance in the Championship game will warrant a Round 2 look.
When you play that well against a defense that barely allowed 100 rushing yards per game this season, you certainly boost your draft stock.
Manti Te'o, LB
For someone who played well all season long, you would think one game couldn't be that bad. But for Manti Te'o the BCS Championship game has certainly sent a shock to his draft stock.
The senior linebacker was a non-factor in the game, notching zero sacks, interceptions and passes defended.
Te'o did manage a solid 10 tackles, but seven of those came as assists. His inability to produce individual tackles has made him look less fundamentally sound than before.
While Te'o is a hardworking professional, he's still taking a tumble down draft boards. As a player whose Heisman candidacy caused such a hot debate, this performance only adds to the "overrated" label.
Te'o will still most likely be drafted in the first round, but there's now a good chance it is out of the Top 10.
Is Manti Te'o a Top 10 talent?
Chance Warmack, OG & Barrett Jones, C
Notre Dame had one of the toughest front seven all season long. They were tied at 22nd in the FBS in total sacks (34 for 237 yards of loss), and had the 11th best rushing defense.
But Alabama's star offensive linemen did a fantastic job neutralizing the Irish defense.
Both slated to go somewhere in the first round, Chance Warmack and Barrett Jones cemented their roles as early picks.
The duo aided in giving up zero sacks to Notre Dame, and allowed the Tide to put up a total of 265 yards on the ground.
And despite Jones' on field spat with his QB in the fourth quarter, it seems more a difference of personality than him being a problem player.
The only issue weighing on the center's draft stock now is the extent of a foot injury that he reportedly played through during the game. None the less, his and Warmack's overall performance in the game warrants a rise in stock.
Tyler Eifert, TE
Thought of as one of the best tight ends in this year's draft, Tyler Eifert confirmed speculations when he announced his intentions to head to the NFL after Monday's loss.
The junior put up a solid season with the Irish, leading the team in receiving yards (685) while tying for first in receptions (50) and touchdowns (four).
Eifert didn't have a dominating game against the Crimson Tide, but he had a solid performance. He tied for second on the team with six catches, and had a total of 61 yards receiving.
Eifert's BCS performance was on par with other top tight end draftee Zach Ertz, with the big difference maker being that Ertz faced a defense that wasn't nearly as strong as Alabama's.
Based on that, Eifert has cemented himself as the top tight end in the draft. His stock could warrant anywhere from a late first round to early second round pick.
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