NFL Draft 2011: Top 50 Players Who Should Be Available on Day 3
More attention keeps getting put on the NFL draft year after year. More attention keeps getting put on the first round or two year after year.
NFL clubs do all kinds of research and workouts in order to see if their first couple picks will turn out to be "stars."
The 2011 NFL draft is very deep in my opinion. Teams will get great value even in the second and third rounds.
Where teams win and lose drafts, however, is on day three. It is in Rounds 4-7 where you find those diamonds in the rough. It is where the Patriots found Tom Brady. It is where the Saints found Marques Colston.
Heading into day three of the draft, plenty of potential stars will still be available. Here is a list of 50 prospects still left on the board after three rounds.
50. Andrew Jackson, OG Fresno State
Andrew "the President" Jackson is a player that scouts are projecting to be able to play anywhere along the OL.
He played OG at Fresno State, but has the size to play C and OT if needed.
What separates Jackson from the second or third rounds is his athleticism. He is not the most athletic guy on the planet, but his sheer size and power gives him good upside.
49. Greg McElroy, QB Alabama
Greg McElroy has some questions surrounding him as he heads into this week's draft.
Is his arm strength good enough?
Is he mobile enough to read a blitz and escape the pocket?
Regardless, the man is 24-3 in his career at Alabama in the toughest conference in college football.
McElroy knows how to win football games and he has the heart and determination to make himself useful on a NFL roster.
48. Ugo Chinasa, DE Oklahoma State
Ugo Chinasa has the talent and the raw intangibles to be a starter in the NFL.
His 6'5" 250-pound frame makes him an ideal fit as a pass-rushing DE. He may need to gain a little more weight in order to combat the heftier tackles though.
Chinasa is very quick around the edges and showed off his speed by running a 4.65-second 40.
What limits Chinasa is his intensity on every single play. If he can mature and play every down, he can turn into a steal.
47. Jah Reid, OT UCF
Jah Reid is a player that has climbed from undrafted free agent to a potential fourth-round selection.
He impressed many in the East-West Shrine Game and also at his pro day workout.
At 6'8" and 325 pounds, Reid is bigger than your typical lineman, if that's even possible.
Reid already lost about 50 pounds since entering college and showed off his physical toughness during his combine and pro day drills.
46. Jacquizz Rodgers, RB Oregon State
Jacquizz Rodgers left school early to make money for his family. Hopefully he can last long enough in the NFL to do so.
His small frame (5'7" 190 pounds) makes him very vulnerable to a myriad of injuries at the next level.
He never had any problem staying on the field in college. He played 36 games in his three great years at Oregon State.
Rodgers rushed for almost 3,900 yards in only three seasons. You can call him a mini-Darren Sproles.
45. Buster Skrine, CB Tennessee-Chattanooga
I was watching the NFL combine and every analyst there was impressed by the small Buster Skrine.
Coming from a small football school, Skrine exploded on the scene with his great workouts.
He ran originally a 4.29-second 40, which was eventually pushed back to a 4.48 due to clock issues.
He also ran the fastest time out of all the corners in the three-cone drill, 20-yard shuffle and the 60-yard shuffle.
A little undersized, Skrine can make up for it with his unbelievable athleticism.
44. Byron Stingily, OT Louisville
Byron Stingily is a junior college transfer who has only played big-time college football for the past two seasons.
He did improve dramatically over those two seasons and received All-Conference honors as a senior.
Stingily has good size and relatively quick feet for a blindside QB protector. He is definitely a project, but has plenty of potential.
43. Greg Salas, WR Hawaii
Say hello to the next Wes Welker.
Greg Sallas is a five-year senior who benefited from Hawaii's pass-happy offense.
He possesses good size and good enough speed to be a nice slot receiver.
He will never drop a ball.
42. Greg Romeus, DE Pittsburgh
After two brilliant sophomore and junior seasons, Greg Romeus' career came crashing to a halt.
He played only two games as a senior because of back and knee injuries.
Romeus was the Big East Defensive Player of the Year as a junior. If he would have came out early, he probably would have been a day two even a day-one pick.
41. Lawrence Wilson, LB UCONN
Lawrence Wilson was a four-year starter at now Big East powerhouse Connecticut.
Wilson recorded 449 tackles and 35.5 tackles for loss during his career in Hartford.
He possesses great speed and great coverage skills.
He is well undersized though, at only 6'0" and 225 pounds.
40. Josh Davis, OT Georgia
Josh Davis is a raw OT prospect that has great size, but he is still growing into his full frame.
He has been hampered by injuries for three of his four seasons at Georgia. He is a better run-blocker than pass-blocker.
His work ethic and his effort on the field show coaches that he is willing to work and develop as a project.
39. Chris Conte, S Cal
Chris Conte only became a starter his senior year at Cal. It proved he deserved it after receiving an All-Conference selection after he made 72 tackles and one interception.
Conte has good size and great closing speed. He ran a 4.55-second 40 twice in his Cal pro day workouts.
Conte also has knowledge of the cornerback position, which makes his value that much better.
38. Ryan Winterswyk, DE Boise State
Ryan Winterswyk has great size, but limited speed from the DE position.
At Boise State, he faced limited competition, but scouts love his high energy and everlasting motor.
Very coachable kid that can provide depth to a DL.
37. Terrence Toliver, WR LSU
Terrence Toliver has been LSU's deep-ball threat for the past four years.
The problem is he is not explosively fast. He has good size to go up an get a jump ball though.
He would be a better fit in the NFL if he develops into a possession receiver. He has plenty of experience with facing top SEC corners.
36. DeAndre McDaniel, S Clemson
DeAndre McDaniel had two great final years at Clemson. After recording over 100 tackles and eight interceptions, he was named an All-American.
McDaniel followed up 2009 with a good season as well in 2010.
He is very aggressive and jumps a lot of routes, which gets him beat over the top way too many times.
He has good size and great speed. He can develop into a starter if he is coached and taught to play a little more conservative at times.
35. Brandon Fusco, C Slippery Rock
Brandon Fusco is a reliable center that has not missed a game in his college career.
He has tremendous size for being an interior lineman and is a hard worker.
He is very smart and uses that to his advantage, but has only played marginal competition, at best, playing at Slippery Rock in Western PA.
34. Taiwan Jones, RB Eastern Washington
Taiwan Jones is a decent-sized RB that has blazing speed. He comes from a small school where he ran all over the competition. He averaged 7.9 yards per rush.
He showed his ability to catch the ball out of the backfield as well, catching 24 balls for 342 yards as a junior.
He is the perfect third-down back.
33. Adrian Moten, LB Maryland
Adrian Moten is a good prospect for weak-side linebacker. He is a little undersized, but is very quick to the ball.
He is decently strong for his size and is able to lay a hard hit or two.
He was a vocal team leader and captain for two years.
32. D.J. Williams, TE Arkansas
D.J. Williams will be a little undersized for an NFL tight end. However, he did perform well in the toughest conference in college football. He received All-Conference honors the last three seasons at Arkansas.
He may earn a spot on a team initially to play special teams or he can convert to more of an H-back position.
31. Jason Pinkston, OT Pittsburgh
That is one giant man.
Jason Pinkston stands at 6'3" and 315 pounds.
Because looks are deceiving, Pinkston may end up being a OG in the NFL. He played LT in his career at Pitt.
He has quick feet and good hands.
30. Scott Tolzien, QB Wisconsin
Scott Tolzien was a winner at Wisconsin. He was 21-5 as a starter.
Tolzien has a decent arm, but he has a funky release that causes him to become inconsistent.
He manages the game very well and prepares for each game like it's his last.
29. Steven Friday, LB Virginia Tech
Steven Friday became a starter during his senior year and did not disappoint. He recorded 66 tackles and 8.5 sacks for a very good VT team.
Because of his size, he will likely have to convert to the outside linebacker position in the NFL.
He is very quick and agile and has proven he can get to the ball carrier.
28. Jalil Brown, CB Colorado
Jalil Brown has been the "other guy" in Colorado's secondary, playing with first-rounder Jimmy Smith.
Brown has roughly the same size and physical tools that Smith possesses. Brown is just less talented.
He lacks top-end speed and gets beat far too often over the top. He also plays very aggressive and tries to jump routes, which makes him vulnerable to double moves.
27. Lawrence Guy, DT Arizona State
Lawrence Guy made an interesting choice to leave after his junior year of college.
Guy played only three seasons at ASU and did not really put up eye-popping numbers. That is not his game though.
Guy is a massive guy to be plopped right in the middle of the defensive line. He draws attention from multiple linemen because of his size which creates holes in the line for his teammates.
26. Pat Devlin, QB Delaware
Pat Devlin hopes he can follow in Joe Flacco's footsteps. Much like Flacco, Devlin transferred to Delaware and led his team to the national title game.
Devlin was a top recruit out of high school and has great size to see over the line of scrimmage. He has a good quick delivery, but has limited arm strength.
He threw 22 TD and only three picks last season.
25. Derrick Locke, RB Kentucky
Derrick Locke is a very small back, much like Jacquizz Rodgers, but a bit bigger.
He is an explosive back who can hide behind his linemen. He is great at catching the ball out of the backfield and can be a threat in the return game.
Durability concerns linger with his small frame.
24. Brandon Hogan, CB West Virginia
Brandon Hogan is an average-sized corner who loves to play physical at the line of scrimmage.
Talent-wise, Hogan can be a day-two pick, but his off-the-field issues have teams very concerned.
Hogan is an athletic corner that will have to get his life and character in order before teams take a chance on him.
23. Stephen Burton, WR West Texas AM
Stephen Burton broke out as a junior and senior at Texas A&M after he transferred from junior college.
He had over 1,000 yards and 11 TD in 2010.
Burton is a good-sized, sure-handed wideout who can be a good third or fourth possession receiver on a team. He also has return skills.
22. Bilal Powell, RB Louisville
Bilal Powell is a hefty RB with good size.
He does not have a great burst so he hits the holes when he sees them. He has to become a more patient runner and be able to protect the ball and his body.
Powell is a great effort runner who always looks to gain an extra yard or two.
21. Mason Foster, LB Washington
Mason Foster is an NFL-sized linebacker who had a ridiculous year in 2010.
He recorded 163 tackles, 14 tackles for loss and 6.5 sacks.
So why he is not a higher-ranked prospect? He lacks NFL strength and can disappear at times.
20. Quinton Carter, S Oklahoma
Quinton Carter is a hard-nosed S from Oklahoma.
He is very aggressive and loves to lay the big hit on receivers. Because of this though, Carter misses a lot of tackles.
He is better playing in defensive zone schemes.
19. Derek Hall, OT Stanford
Derek Hall did not get the chance to start for Stanford until his senior year.
He was part of a line that blocked for their star quarterback, Andre Luck.
Hall is definitely a project player who does not have a lot of playing experience. He has good size, but will need to work on his fundamentals and technique.
18. Devon Torrance, CB Ohio State
Devon Torrence is the definition of an athlete. He first was a wideout, then converted to corner and used to play baseball.
Torrence is a good cover corner and has good size. He lacks the speed to stay with an NFL wide receiver though. He is definitely a coachable kid that can be productive depending on which team and coach he plays for.
17. Ricky Stanzi, QB Iowa
Ricky Stanzi has not had the best workouts to show off his NFL skills.
However, game film shows that he can be a solid starter or a great backup.
Stanzi is one of the biggest quarterbacks in the draft and has an NFL motion and delivery. He is not very mobile though and strictly stays in the pocket.
16. John Moffitt, OG
John Moffitt is not the most athletic lineman, but he has some skills that should be able to get him drafted on day two.
He is a versatile guard that can play all three interior positions on the line. He is well coordinated and always looking for coaching suggestions. He has the size to be an NFL lineman and will need to work on his footwork and agility to become a starter.
15. DeAndre Brown, WR Southern Mississippi
After having a very successful freshman year, DeAndre Brown struggled to return from a terrible leg injury he suffered.
Ever since the injury, Brown has never been as fast as he was.
At 6'5", Brown now has become more of a possession receiver and a big-time red-zone target.
14. Shane Vereen, RB Cal
Shane Vereen is another running back that has come from the sudden RB school at Cal.
He is a good, hard runner for his size and follows behind his blocks to hit the holes hard.
Vereen is a playmaker out of the backfield with his ability to catch the football and run after the catch.
13. Virgil Green, TE Nevada
Virgil Green has prototypical NFL tight end height and outstanding speed.
He is more of a pass-catching, playmaking end, but shows willingness to help block as well.
He got 10 TD over the past two seasons. Has very high potential.
12. Akeem Dent, LB, Georgia
Akeem Dent may be the first ILB taken in the draft. It is a very weak group, but Dent does show some positives.
He has good size and is the best at stopping the run. He had a great senior season where he recorded 126 tackles, 6.5 tackles for loss and 2.5 sacks.
Dent does not have the best closing speed to run down quick running backs though.
11. Casey Matthews, LB Oregon
Casey Matthews is a decent LB who has adequate size and speed, but nothing spectacular.
Matthews has a good motor and work ethic like his brother.
Connections to his brother, Clay, will get him drafted in the beginning of day three.
10. K.J. Wright, LB Mississippi State
K.J. Wright was one of the more consistent linebackers in college. For three seasons it was a given that he would get you 70 tackles, at least seven tackles for loss and two sacks.
He needs to bulk up a little bit in order to fill out into his 6'3" frame.
He probably will make a team as a special-teamer and fill in for an injured linebacker at time.
9. Jeremy Beal, DE Oklahoma
Jeremy Beal has the prototypical size for an NFL defensive end.
He is a little slow around the edge, but here is another instance where it is hard to debate with the numbers he put up at Oklahoma.
His career numbers at the SEC powerhouse:
Fifty-four games, 223 tackles, 58.5 tackles for loss, 29 sacks, 10 forced fumbles and one INT.
8. Ahmad Black, S Florida
Ahmad Black is the smallest of the strong safeties entering the draft this year.
However, Black is still one of the better prospects because of his playmaking ability. He is a great tackler for his size and has shown to be a turnover creator. He created eight turnovers by himself last season for Florida.
7. Joespeh Barksdale, OT LSU
Joseph Barksdale has gained some momentum since his offseason workouts. He has shown that he has some great potential, but it will be up to him to accomplish and fulfill that potential.
Barksdale is very slow at blocking fast edge-rushers, which could be a huge problem for teams.
He can play inside though, so maybe OG would be the better fit for him.
6. Rashad Carmichael, CB Virginia Tech
Because of his small stature, Rashad Carmichael may have some issues at the line of scrimmage against bigger wide receivers. He does not play too physical and mostly uses his speed to cover wideouts.
He has shown that he is best suited for a zone scheme. He does not have the instincts or skills to play man-to-man coverage.
5. Lee Ziemba, OT Auburn
Lee Ziemba is an old-school type of offensive lineman. He goes on streaks where he is just absolutely dominant and forceful.
He always finishes his blocks and runs defenders into the ground. He needs to improve his strength to become a full-time starter at RT in the NFL.
He was a four-year starter at Auburn.
4. Greg Jones, LB Michigan State
Greg Jones is a little undersized and lacks elite strength, but that is really all that separates him from a first-round player.
Jones is a tackling machine. In his four years at Michigan State, he recorded 465 tackles, 46.5 tackles for loss and 16.5 sacks.
He has a good motor and work ethic and is best as a blitzer up the middle.
3. Austin Pettis, WR Boise State
Austin Pettis was a four-year standout at Boise State.
He scored 39 TDs and had almost 3,000 yards receiving.
Pettis has good size and great hands, but lacks the speed to consistently beat corners over the top.
2. Pernell McPhee, DE Mississippi State
Pernell McPhee is a very big and hefty defensive end who is rising on a lot of draft boards.
He uses his superior weight to his advantage off the line of scrimmage.
Once he gets his hands on the ball carrier, he is not getting away.
Still young and raw, but has plenty of potential.
1. Jordan Todman, RB UCONN
Jordan Todman may become the best Day-3 pick in the draft. He had two great seasons at UCONN before declaring early for this year's draft.
Todman is a little small at 5'9", but he has the bulk to be durable enough at the next level.
He is an inside runner who can cut back very quickly.
He will be a very good third-down back. He also has return capabilities as well.