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The job of evaluating football players is one filled with misses and some hits. But the good people at home rarely remember when you get one right—they'll always remember when you miss. 

When you work in media and are asked to evaluate players, I've found it is best to be up-front and honest about missing on players. No one wants to hear excuses from analysts on why Jimmy Clausen didn't become a franchise quarterback—the fan at home wants to laugh at your misfortune and hear honest analysis on why Clausen didn't pan out. 

I've been evaluating players since the 2002 draft, and I like to think I've improved with age. This article will peel back the curtain, though, showing you my top 10 players ever graded at each position. You'll also get notes on why certain players failed or why I was higher on some players than other analysts and even NFL teams were.

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The best player in the country will not suit up Saturday and may never do so again in college football.

Running back Todd Gurley is out after the University of Georgia handed down an indefinite suspension. The star tailback and Heisman Trophy candidate is being investigated for an alleged violation of NCAA rules, the school announced Thursday evening.

ESPN's Joe Schad reports "the NCAA investigation centers around whether Gurley was given money for autographs, memorabilia or the use of his likeness. Georgia officials did not reveal the alleged violation."

That's legal for me or you to do but not for a college "student-athlete."

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Following a crazy week of college football, this week's Scouting Notebook is jam-packed with inside information on which players NFL teams are loving, cooling on and discovering as scouts continue their road work.

We'll also take a look at an updated draft order and team needs for the first round of the 2015 NFL draft, discuss another exciting 2016 prospect and see which college stars are already drawing comparisons to Jadeveon Clowney and J.J. Watt.


— Mississippi State quarterback Dak Prescott has turned heads with back-to-back wins over LSU and Texas A&M. With a game against No. 2 Auburn on the slate this weekend, it's worth noting that people close to Prescott are already putting out feelers about his NFL potential for the 2015 class. Prescott, whose mother passed away in November of 2013 to cancer, is said to be looking for a way to provide for his family sooner rather than later. He's currently ranked as a second-round talent on my big board.

— Another player who has been poking around for news on his draft stock is LSU defensive back Jalen Mills. The excellent cornerback/safety prospect is another in a long line of talented defensive backs to come out of LSU, and he carries a late first-round grade on my board currently. 

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It's always NFL draft season around these parts, and with six weeks of college football already in the books, a clear picture of the best talent available for the 2015 draft is starting to take shape.

An early look at this class shows strength at offensive tackle, running back and edge pass-rushers on defense. The top-end talent at quarterback looks impressive midway through the year, but with conference schedules picking up, players like Marcus Mariota, Brett Hundley and Jameis Winston will be under more pressure and more of a spotlight to perform well for scouts.

Here's a look at the current top 100 players on my board, which includes underclassmen (redshirt sophomores and juniors) at this stage. You'll also get a look at the top 10 players at each position, including rankings for 3-4 defensive positions.

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October is here, and more than the leaves are falling this month. 

As NFL teams win (and lose), the draft order becomes more set and we see which areas each team will be looking to address in the upcoming NFL draft. Some are obvious, like the New England Patriots needing help at wide receiver, but others take weeks to flesh out. But make no mistake, every NFL scout is at a college right now watching film, meeting coaches, talking to trainers and evaluating prospect game film.

With the NFL draft set for April 30, teams now have an end date to work toward. And we do too.


— One area scout told me this week, "Everyone loves (Brett) Hundley, but hates EJ Manuel. They're the same player!"

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You may have clicked on this article thinking it's way too early for a 2015 mock draft, and it might be. But if you're a current fan of the winless Oakland Raiders or Jacksonville Jaguars, you're probably already looking ahead to the upcoming draft. This is for you.

The NFL season is four weeks gone, and that means we can start looking at the current draft order (based on win/loss record) and marrying the order with team needs and draftable player talent. There are underclassmen listed here who may decide to return to school, but in late September, these are the players most likely to enter the 2015 draft instead of heading back to college for another season (or two).

Predicting what will happen in late April 2015 is impossible, but this is a look at what positions teams are looking to fill, what talent is expected to be on the board and how the class could unfold seven months from now.

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With the NFL heading into Week 4, draft season is in the very near future for many fans. With NFL scouts on the road, college teams getting into the heart of their schedules and NFL teams starting to show their weaknesses, it's always important to keep at least one eye on the upcoming 2015 NFL draft.

Each Friday you'll get a look inside my scouting notebook with this article. You'll find rumors, notes, analysis and updates on which players are moving up and down my personal draft board. Hopefully you'll learn a thing or two along the way, too.


— In talking to people around the league, the general belief on how the Jacksonville Jaguars can best improve, as summed up by one pro personnel scout, is to "draft defense with every pick they have." Head coach Gus Bradley has a defensive background, but his team is struggling to stop opposing offenses and looks simply outmatched at most positions.

—  Jameis Winston is sure to dominate the headlines until his name is called at the draft, but this week I asked scouts and general managers which NFL team he'd best fit from a scheme perspective:

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You can call them red flags, off-field questions or character concerns, but in a new age of increased awareness and punishment for crimes away from the field, NFL teams are hyperfocused on the character side of scouting.

In my talks with agents, scouts, personnel directors and general managers this year, there has been one common theme: recruit and/or draft the most talented players who are good people.

With the Baltimore Ravens, Carolina Panthers and Minnesota Vikings—not to mention the NFL office—going through terrible public-relations nightmares, thanks to off-field issues, the background and integrity of every draft prospect will be weighed more than ever in the upcoming class.

That doesn't mean that every anonymous scout quote we see between now and the draft deserves merit. There are times when a competing agent or even NFL teams will spread false or exaggerated information with the hopes of moving a player down the board.

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The NFL draft has become a 365-day-a-year job for those who cover it, but for many fans, the draft doesn't become reality until January or February. That is, unless your favorite NFL team is struggling. Then you start pinning your hopes on the draft-eligible college players and talking about "next year."

So what about next year? Following what many, myself included, called the deepest draft in decades, how does the 2015 class stack up?

That's the purpose of this article—to educate and excite the fans who don't pay as much attention to that great bridge between college football and the NFL. If you find yourself wanting to know more about the NFL draft but haven't paid much attention to it during the season until now, this is for you.

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As I sat in our Bleacher Report New York studio Monday morning, our production assistant sat with his laptop and an intense look on his face. "What are you doing?" asked our host, Adam Lefkoe. "Looking at mock drafts for the Giants, man. We suck" was his reply. 

Love it or hate it, it's draft season for many fans across the country this week. And that's who the Scouting Notebook is for.

This week we'll talk a lot about Florida State quarterback Jameis Winston and what the future holds for Robert Griffin III in the NFL. We'll also take a close look at my top-ranked defensive tackle in the country. So if you're like our PA Gabe, this is for you.


Jameis Winston is in the news again, and this time it's due to a suspension after the Heisman Trophy winner stood on a table in the student union and yelled comments better not printed here. Deadspin has the full report (NSFW) for those interested.