25 Recruits We're Looking Forward to Seeing at Camps and Combines
Spring is here and that means it's time for football. No seriously, it is. Football has gotten to be a year-round sport in this day and age, especially at the high school level. Sure players aren't in pads and hitting, but they are still working out and pretty much playing.
The offseason of today has become one of heavy emphasis on the camps and combines circuit. Players attend not only college camps, but many different prestigious offseason camps, combines and 7-on-7 passing league tournaments.
So, since it's time for all of that to begin as we move through spring and summer, exactly which players are we really looking forward to seeing in the circuit? Well, we'll give you 25 recruits who we at B/R are looking forward to seeing at the various camps and combines this offseason.
Malik McDowell, DL
McDowell is said to be a very good athlete for a big man, but I only see adequate athleticism in him. He's a 6'6" DL who weighs close to 300 pounds and will be a DT in college.
The chance to see him work out at a camp or combine would be a good avenue to re-assess his athleticism in the trenches. I'm looking forward to seeing how he fares.
Parris Campbell, RB/WR
Campbell has very good play speed, and many consider him among the very fastest players in the country. He's about 6'0", 180 pounds and seeing his speed will be a treat in a shirt and shorts setting.
It'll also be interesting to see at what position Campbell works out. He can play RB or WR like Jalin Marshall and is also headed for Ohio State.
Clifton Garrett, LB
Garrett is one of the more physically imposing players in the country this year. The Illinois native is a 6'2", 228-pound 'backer that has explosive strength and big hitting ability.
I keep hearing about how much his space athleticism has improved and I want to see it for myself. The chance to see how Garrett looks in coverage at a 7-on-7 tournament or camp would be neat to take advantage of.
Elijah Hood, RB
We all know about how much of a tank Hood is with the ball in his hands. He can roll downhill and blast tacklers in run alleys, displaying great power.
I want to see the 5'11", 215-pounder catch the football this offseason. Hood has deceptive speed and the camps and combines circuit will give him a chance to emphatically prove he isn't a two-down back.
Ermon Lane, WR
These offseason events are always excellent showcases for QBs and WRs especially, so Lane should do some damage this spring and summer. He's a 6'2", 195-pound WR with good size and hands.
From Florida, Lane has solid speed, but I want to really get a feel for his release quickness and ability to detach from coverage at junction points. It'll be good to see what kind of circuit season he has.
Damian Prince, OT
From Maryland, many view Prince as a 5-star caliber OT prospect, but right now he's missing that fifth star. Prince doesn't always consistently play in a physical and tough manner, which hinders him.
He could walk into the fall season with his fifth star if he shows more physicality during some of the summer camps. Prince dominating at The Opening, should he camp there, would go a long ways.
Joseph Yearby, RB
The nation's best scatback is a very good football player who can do an array of things. Seeing Yearby workout at a camp or combine just to see his quick feet would be cool.
The 5'9', 191-pounder could also display the ability to catch the football and be used as a slot WR too in these settings. Miami knows it is getting a good one.
Raekwon McMillan, LB
The big 'backer is a 6'3", 236-pounder from Georgia with good tools to plug holes vs. the run. What McMillan needs reps at is in pass coverage.
What better way to get those reps than to go a few 7-on-7 tournaments and camps to improve a weakness of his. With his athleticism, it's only a matter of time before McMillan becomes more than adequate in this department.
Deshaun Watson, QB
Watson has Dabo Swinney sweating bullets right now, as the Clemson commit is looking around just a bit. Swinney is going to need someone to replace Tajh Boyd and Watson could be the guy.
Noted for being pretty decisive with the ball, having great arm strength and athleticism, Watson should be a hit at passing league games and camps.
Hoza Scott, LB
Scott is this year's Matthew Thomas, as he can play OLB in both a 4-3 and 3-4. The Texan can track the run as a classic chase guy due to the ability to run like a deer.
He also can rush the passer from the edges and has solid explosiveness at the snap. It'll be good for Scott to use this offseason to hone his pass-rushing arsenal and also getting better at man coverage.
Joe Mixon, RB
Mixon is a pretty intriguing prospect because he's got good size as 6'1", 195-pound RB that has good wiggle but also presents some power.
I want to see Mixon work out so I can get a better feel for his long speed and suddenness. I see flashes on tape, but I want to see up close just how laterally explosive he is and how fast his frame moves with the ball.
KD Cannon, WR
Cannon is a hard worker and he's also very fast. Another thing to like about the 6'1", 158-pound Texan is he's pretty heady and sees the field well.
Cannon finds holes in coverage voids and isn't afraid to settle in them, catch the ball and keep his offense on the field. A well-rounded WR, it'll be interesting to see Cannon in action this spring and summer.
Jalen Hurd, RB
A big and rugged runner at 6'3", 225 pounds, the Tennessee commit is a player I'm looking forward to seeing. Is he on the track to being a straight-lined power back or is he a back with true elusiveness and wiggle?
Seeing him this spring and summer will help us continue to make that determination.
Kyle Allen, QB
Allen is rapidly rising up the board and could debut as my new No. 1 QB next time we unveil our positional power rankings. He's very smart with the ball, sees the field well and has solid instincts.
At 6'2" and 200 pounds, the Arizona native has a solid arm, but it's not cannon. I want to see him re-sell his arm strength to make sure it is adequate enough to keep defenses honest.
Quin Blanding, S
Seeing Blanding, the country's top safety, patrol and ball-hawk on the back end through the camps and combines circuit is going to be pretty cool.
He's a big D at 6'2", 200 pounds but has great instincts, range and ball skills. Blanding, a Virginia pledge, is a good on-field communicator and leads wherever he goes.
Dalvin Cook, RB
Cook recently flipped from Clemson to Florida and is one the top RBs on my board. He's a 5'10", 197-pounder with excellent quickness, elusiveness, speed and agility.
Cook isn't a power guy, but I'd like see how he holds up in one on ones vs. LBs at a couple camps. Last year, Alvin Kamara proved his worth in this department at a few offseason events.
It'll be interesting to see if Cook can do the same.
Kentavius Street, DE
Street is from North Carolina and has a reputation as a strong run defender. He's 6'4" and weighs over 260 pounds, so he has the bulk to anchor and press vs. blocks.
The knock on Street is that he isn't a great pass-rusher. Well, how about we see him accept the challenge and go to a couple offseason events and dominate the one-on-one pass rushing drills?
Adoree' Jackson, CB
Jackson couldn't participate in the LA NFTC due to a lingering injury, but perhaps seeing him at some of the passing tournaments and The Opening will be even better.
He's a 5'10", 175-pounder that has wiry strength, quick feet, recovery speed and fights during coverage. Jackson is a special athlete, and while he looks to see where he'll be this offseason, he'll probably win the California State Long Jumping title.
Marlon Humphrey, CB
The big CB is great in zone coverage and in off-man too. What I'm looking forward to seeing from Humphrey is if the 6'1", 180-pounder is getting better at press coverage. The one on ones at any camp or combine he attends will be crucial.
Jabrill Peppers, DB/ATH
The New Jersey native has a great buzz around him and it is athletic ability has people talking. At 6'1" and 205 pounds, Peppers can play an array of spots on the field and isn't inferior athletically with just about anything.
I want to see him at a camp/combine just to see what position or positions he chooses to work out at.
Andrew Brown, DT
Who wouldn't want to see a 6'4", 295-pound explosive DT at a camp or combine?
Brown has outstanding talent and what I want to see up close is his hand quickness and ability to use his mitts as weapons.
Brown has violent ability and the chance to watch him punish some blockers is something I'm looking forward too. Last year Kenny Bigelow put on some shows in these settings.
Sony Michel, RB
Seeing Michel at a camp or combine won't help us determine much because we all know how good he is. It'll just be another avenue for us to see the 5'11", 205-pound showcase his talent.
Will much change after seeing him at a camp/combine? No, but we're still looking forward to seeing Michel perform.
Tony Brown, CB
Brown is the top CB in the country, but Marlon Humphrey and Adoree Jackson are on his heels.
The Texas native is a 6'0", 185-pounder who has great jamming strength in press coverage and is very menacing to WRs in coverage. Brown also could be a great safety and I want to see him take a few reps as a seam defender this offseason.
Da'Shawn Hand, DE
Hand is the top recruit in the country according to many people, so of course we're looking forward to seeing him work out at a camp/combine.
The 6'5" DE is bulking up and is over 250 pounds already. Hand has explosive quickness at the snap and really is a strong and powerful player. His pursuit speed is a great and it'll be neat to see Hand rush the passer in one-on-ones from the DT position to see how he looks there.
Leonard Fournette, RB
Fournette is a physical marvel, as it's crazy to watch a 6'1" RB who weighs almost 230 pounds move around so quickly, easily and freely on tape.
Fournette has good instincts, catches the football like a WR and has great speed. As I said with Sony Michel, watching him workout won't change much, but confirming what we see on tape is something we look forward to with Fournette this spring and summer.
Edwin Weathersby is the College Football Recruiting Analyst for Bleacher Report. He has worked in scouting/player personnel departments for three professional football teams, including the New York Giants, Cleveland Browns and the Las Vegas Gladiators of the Arena League. He spent a year evaluating prep prospects and writing specific recruiting and scouting content articles for Student Sports Football (formerly ESPN Rise-HS). A syndicated scout and writer, he's also contributed to WeAreSC.com, GatorBait.net and Diamonds in the Rough Inc., a College Football and NFL Draft magazine.