*This article was coauthored by fellow Bleacher Report columnist Joe Blair*
With the NFL draft only a few days away, it's important to make final evaluations of each player, and determine which prospects have separated themselves from the field. If a player is ranked first, it's not necessarily to say that he will be taken at that spot, just that he is the best overall player. For the Mock Draft edition click here.
Not all draft boards are perfect, and ranking prospects is very based on personal opinion. Feel free to leave comments or questions, we hope this will stimulate draft conversation.
Paea is obviously an extremely strong interior defensive lineman with adequate size. However, he certainly makes up for it in strength, as he recently broke the NFL combine's record for most reps at 225, with 49.
Paea was voted as team captain of the Beavers two straight years, and has great character. He is effective in both run stopping and as a pass rusher. He is a dynamic player who should succeed given the right situation.
Akeem Ayers is a consistent player that played in every game of his three-year run at UCLA. He was the captain of the team last year, and had no off the field issues. Great size and measurements for a linebacker. He has shown a lapse in motivation at times, and is ineffective against larger blockers. He has work to do, but he should be able to overcome these problems with the right coaching and dedication.
He has good speed and initial burst off the line, and is athletic for his size. Above average tackling ability, and is good against the run as well as dropping back in coverage. He should make for a good outside linebacker in almost any system.
Kerrigan is not the best athlete in the draft, nor does he have an ideal defensive end figure, however, every time scouts have doubted him he proves them wrong through his production. He continues to perform at a high level all the time even with his physical limitations.
Kerrigan was the Big Ten's defensive player of the year in 2010 and tied the all-time FBS record of 14 forced fumbles in a career. He has great instincts and is simply a playmaker. He will probably be limited to playing in a 4-3 system at defensive end, but he will make up for his lack of versatility with his motor and, leadership, and production.
While Carmi struggles in pass protection at times, he is an ideal run blocker on the outside and is very strong. Think Phil Loadholt. He has had injury problems in his career, but he started all 13 games last year for the Badgers.
He has excellent size for an offensive tackle and he is explosive as well. He was named to the All-Academic Big 10 team three times. Carimi may not start immediately, but over time he should make a great offensive tackle.
Solder started all 36 games at left tackle over the past three years and has an ideal NFL body for his position. At just over 6'8", he is a massive human being.
He has an excellent combination of size and athleticism as he was recruited as a tight end out of high school. He needs to work on getting lower, and there are still some technical kinks he needs to smooth out, but overall he is a great prospect, and will be effective in both pass protection and run blocking.
The 2009 Heisman trophy winner is the only running back prospect on our board. He is a powerful runner with a low center of gravity and great balance. He has excellent ball security and outstanding vision. He waits for the holes to open up, and he hits them hard.
Ingram was a great running back in college, although there are a few things he will have to work on. He suffered from injuries during his college career and will need to work to get stronger and more resistant to injury. He also isn't a great pass protector or receiver. He also needs to improve his speed. Overall he is a good runner who will probably be taken higher than 20th due to a lack of good running backs.
While Mike's twin brother emerged as one of the top rookies in the NFL last year, there is reason to believe Mike could be just as good. He struggled with snapping at the beginning of the season, but he settled down and now he looks like a top prospect in this years draft.
Pouncey played in all 54 games of his college career, and has been very productive. He is a versatile center, and plays well against both the pass and the run. He is very tough, and is a good leader. He has a great first step and should excel right away in the NFL.
Aldon Smith is a guy that most scouts hold in high regard. He is a great pass rusher who should be excellent coming off the edge in the NFL. However, many people are worried about how Smith will handle the run as well as injury concerns. He fractured his right fibula last season and injuries could become a problem. For now though, he remains in the top 20.
Castonzo is a physical specimen. At 6'7", 310 pounds he has ideal size for his position, and is a great athlete. He stared all 54 games in his career at BC, and has had no injury issues. He is a good student and has had no off the field issues. He is a good athlete who, in time, will be a great offensive lineman. He may not be ready for NFL run blocking duties right away, but eventually he will be a solid starter.
Jimmy Smith probably will not be drafted this high in the draft, but it's certainly not because of his physical skills. He has been caught with drugs and alcohol multiple times, and obviously has some character issues. Many people bring up a Pacman Jones connection, but Smith doesn't have the same set of problems. He is just immature.
On the field, he is the full package. He is just over 6'2" and has great top end speed. He is very good in coverage and is also is excellent in run support. He would definitely be a top-20 pick without the off-the-field issues.
Liuget is under publicized because he plays for a subpar team, but he is a great prospect in this year's draft. He is just over 6'2", so he's a little small but he is very quick and powerful. He is not the best athlete but he has great instincts and can get to the quarterback in pass rushing situations. He will be a high pick come draft day.
Smith is athletically built and I bet you never would have guessed he was an offensive tackle looking at that picture. He isn't really great at anything, but he is pretty good at everything. He is still pretty raw and probably won't be a starter his rookie year. He has loads of potential and the raw physical tools to dominate in the future. He has good work ethic and will be a good player someday.
Wilkerson exhibits great size for a defensive tackle. While at Temple he has started 25 games in a row, proving himself as a durable, consistant player. Scouts have concerns with his work ethic, especially in the weight room. He also uses his hands very well when shedding blocks, but he does lack an elite explosiveness. He has also had troubles in school.
Cameron Jordan has great size for a NFL defensive end. Jordan can play end in both a 3-4 or 4-3 system making him very versatile along the front. Jordan excels against the stopping the run. His biggest concern is his pass rushing ability of the end, recording only 5.5 sacks this last season. Jordan has played in 49 out of his 50 games while at Cal making him a durable player.
Last season, Cam Newton put together one of the best seasons in college football's glorious history by leading his Auburn Tigers to a national championship, while also earning the Heisman Trophy award. He has excellent size for a quarterback, being 6'5'' and 250 lbs. He has great arm strength, but struggles with accuracy at times. Scouts have called him a "selfish." He has great athletic ability that will help him continue broken plays. He also needs to adjust to a pro style offense.
Prince established himself as the elite shutdown college cornerback last season, and many scouts believe that he can translate his game to the NFL. He has solid size and speed for a cornerback, but not exceptional. He demonstrates some of the best natural instincts a college corner can have. He has great coverage skills to go along with an elite run-stopping game.
Gabbert possess great size for a quarterback, being a shade under 6'5'' and about 230 pounds. He has had great durability starting 26 games in a row at Missouri. He is excellent as a student being named first team Academic All-Big 12 last fall. Gabbert has outstanding accuracy to go along with an above average arm strength. He also has the ability to move around in the pocket if necessary. He embraced his leadership role at Missouri.
Early mocks had Bowers as the first overall pick, but he as dropped due to concerns with his knee surgery. Bowers has outstanding size, great speed, and can play anywhere along the line. He has elite pass rusher ability, while also being a beast against the run. If Bowers can stay healthy he has a chance to be one of the best defensive ends in the league.
Robert Quinn did not play in 2010 due to a suspension involving him taking illegal benefits from an agent. Quinn is undersized for an end, but he makes up for it in speed. He can play either end or 3-4 outside linebacker. He is a pass rusher specialist, in '09 he recorded 11 sacks. His biggest weakness his ability to stop the run.
Julio Jones put together a great career at Alabama having over 1,000 receiving yards in each of the last two seasons. He has tremendous upside, he has great size for a WR, while also running a 4.34 40 yard dash. Has a tendency to make some easy drops, but overall has solid hands. He willing to make those tough catches across the middle of the field. Also he is a solid run blocker.
Nick Fairley headed the national champion Auburn Tigers defense, while putting together one of the best seasons ever by a defensive tackle. Last season, Fairley had 60 tackles to go along with 11 sacks, but before last season he had not really produced. He excels as both a pass rusher and a run stopper. Many scouts question his work ethic and his willingness to give it his all every play.
Von Miller has become the most elite pass rusher in this draft. He is an ideal 3-4 outside linebacker, at best Miller could become a DeMarcus Ware-type player. He is a little undersized,but he still produced 10.5 sacks last season at TAMU. He is solid against the run, and will excel on third downs. He is known as a hard worker both on and off the field.
A. J. Green is considered by most scouts the best receiving prospect since Calvin Johnson. Green gas decent size and speed, could be improved. Green is a silky route runner, allowing for him to make up for his lack of top-end speed. He has incredible hands and focus, allowing him to be a reliable option for a quarterback. Green's abilities make him a quarterback's best friend.
Dareus is built perfectly for a NFL defensive tackle, he carries his weight very well. He did not miss game during his career at Alabama. Dareus is a top-end pass rusher, as well as a run stopper. Dareus has incredibly quick hands and feet. Conditioning for a 16 game season is his only concern.
Patrick Peterson is considered by many scouts to be the best cornerback since Champ Bailey, maybe even Charles Woodson. He has an unbelievable combination of size, speed and ball skills. He ran a 4.31 40-yard dash, which one one of the fastest at the combine. He has demonstrated great durability at LSU. He also has exceptional skills as a returner. Peterson is also considered an outstanding run stopping corner. He has an incredible eye for the ball, and can make wide-receiver like catchers. He instincts and skills should allow him to become one of the best ball hawks in the NFL. His cover skills are not outstanding, but still well above average.