2015 NFL Draft: Matt Miller's Pre-Combine Big Board

Matt Miller@nfldraftscoutNFL Draft Lead WriterFebruary 9, 2015

2015 NFL Draft: Matt Miller's Pre-Combine Big Board

0 of 16

    Mark J. Terrill/Associated Press

    The NFL Scouting Combine is just over one week away, and with it, the draft will see a major shakeup. It's time for one last look at my Top 300 big board before Indianapolis.

    NFL teams have a system that I've followed in my work, and it goes as follows: In the fall, I watch three games of any player in my database and either flag him as "undraftable" or assign a talent grade. I'll then revisit these players in the winter (after the NFL season ends) and update my notes and grades on the players while also including any juniors who declared for the draft. The next step in the process is to update players after the NFL Scouting Combine.

    With the first big update of the year out of the way, here's a look at the Top 300 by position.

Top 50 Overall

1 of 16

    Jeff Gross/Getty Images

    You won't see anyone comparing this class to 2011 or 2014 in terms of overall talent, but the 2015 draft class is very strong at some positions. Running back, wide receiver, offensive tackle, defensive tackle and edge-rusher are all quality positions with top-end talent and depth.

    The 2015 class is the "Year of the Pass-Rusher," though, and my top 10 is anchored by four defensive linemen. Of my top 15 overall, only five play on offense. It's a surprisingly great year for defenders, which is good news for fans in Dallas and Chicago.

    Top 50 Rankings
    RankPlayer Pos. Pos. RankSchoolClassHt.Wt.
    1 Jameis WinstonQB1FSUrSo6'4"232
    2Leonard WilliamsDT1USCJr6'5"298
    3Randy GregoryDE1NebraskarJr6'6"245
    4Marcus Mariota QB2OregonrJr6'4"215
    5Kevin WhiteWR1West VirginiaSr6'3"209
    6Brandon Scherff OT1IowarSr6'5"320
    7 Amari CooperWR2AlabamaJr6'1"202
    8Shane RayDE2MissourirJr6'3"245
    9 DeVante ParkerWR3LouisvilleSr6'3"209
    10Danny SheltonDT2WashingtonSr6'2"332
    11Dante FowlerDE3FloridaJr6'2"261
    12Landon CollinsSS1AlabamaJr6'0"215
    13 Shaq ThompsonOLB1WashingtonJr6'2"231
    14Alvin Dupree DE4KentuckyrSr6'4"267
    15 Benardrick McKinneyILB1Mississippi StaterJr6'4"249
    16 La'el CollinsOT2LSUSr6'5"321
    17Devin Funchess WR4MichiganJr6'5"230
    18Todd Gurley RB1GeorgiaJr6'1"232
    19Marcus PetersCB1WashingtonrJr6'0"198
    20 Trae Waynes CB2Michigan StaterJr6'1"183
    21 Malcom BrownDT3TexasJr6'4"320
    22Eli HaroldDE5VirginiaJr6'4"250
    23Cedric Ogbuehi OT3Texas A&MrSr6'5"300
    24Andrus PeatOT4StanfordJr6'7"312
    25T.J. Clemmings OT5PittsburghrSr6'5"305
    26 Arik Armstead DE6OregonJr6'7"296
    27 Maxx WilliamsTE1MinnesotarSo6'4"254
    28 Gerod Holliman FS1LouisvillerSo6'2"213
    29 Jaelen StrongWR5Arizona StaterJr6'4"212
    30Eddie GoldmanDT4Florida StateJr6'3"320
    31 Ereck FlowersOT6Miami (Fla.)Jr6'5"324
    32P.J. WilliamsCB3Florida StateJr6'0"196
    33 Jalen CollinsCB4LSUrJr6'2"194
    34Alex CarterCB5StanfordrJr6'0"202
    35Carl DavisDT5IowarSr6'5"315
    36Vic BeasleyOLB2ClemsonrSr6'2"235
    37Nate OrchardDE7UtahSr6'4"255
    38 Owamagbe Odighizuwa DE8UCLArSr6'4"255
    39Kevin JohnsonCB6Wake ForestrSr6'0"175
    40Devin SmithWR6Ohio StateSr6'1"197
    41Paul DawsonOLB3TCUSr6'2"230
    42Nelson Agholor WR7USCrJr6'1"190
    43 Tevin ColemanRB2IndianaJr6'0"210
    44Michael BennettDT6Ohio StateSr6'2"288
    45Danielle HunterDE9LSUJr6'6"240
    46Duke JohnsonRB3Miami (Fla.)Jr5'9"206
    47Eric KendricksILB2UCLArSr6'0"230
    48 Denzel Perryman ILB3Miami (Fla.)Sr5'11"242
    49Melvin GordonRB4WisconsinrJr6'1"207
    50T.J. Yeldon RB5AlabamaJr6'2"221


2 of 16

    Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

    If your favorite team needs a quarterback and is picking outside the top six in the draft, you might want to start looking at Christian Hackenberg highlights on YouTube.

    After Jameis Winston and Marcus Mariota, the 2015 draft class is the worst one I've ever seen. There is no other player who has starting-caliber tools. UCLA's Brett Hundley has some talent and athleticism, but his quarterback tools are all over the place. The rest of the class is very disappointing in terms of actual QB play.

    It's Winston, Mariota or wait until next year.

    Quarterback Rankings
    RankPlayerSchoolHTWTClass OVR Rank
    1 Jameis WinstonFlorida State6'4"232rSo1
    2Marcus Mariota Oregon6'4"215rJr4
    3Brett Hundley UCLA6'3"227rJr60
    4Bryce PettyBaylor6'3"230rSr129
    5Garrett Grayson Colorado State6'2"220rSr137
    6Brandon BridgeSouth Alabama6'5"235rSr187
    7Sean Mannion Oregon State6'5"220rSr208
    8Cody Fajardo Nevada6'2"215rSr215
    9Shane Carden East Carolina6'2"221Sr232
    10Connor Halliday Washington St.6'4"201Sr242
    11Blake SimsAlabama6'0"208rSr249
    12Bryan BennettSE Louisiana6'2"215rSr254
    13Jerry Lovelocke Prairie View A&M 6'5"200Sr276

Running Backs

3 of 16

    Mike Zarrilli/Getty Images

    The running back is back.

    An early look at the 2015 draft class shows multiple running backs graded higher than last year's top-drafted back, Bishop Sankey. That starts with Todd Gurley, a legit Heisman Trophy candidate and top-15 player before tearing his ACL in mid-November. The former Bulldog could still be a first-round pick if his rehab looks good by late April.

    You can pick your flavor between Tevin Coleman (Mr. Compete), Duke Johnson (Mr. Speed), Melvin Gordon (Mr. Production) and T.J. Yeldon (Mr. Power) and have a good No. 2 back in this class. These four runners should all be off the board by the mid-second round. 

    The depth here is good, too. David Cobb, Ameer Abdullah, Mike Davis and Jay Ajayi all project as future starters.

    Running Back Rankings
    RankPlayerSchoolHTWTClass OVR Rank
    1Todd Gurley Georgia6'1"232Jr18
    2 Tevin ColemanIndiana6'0"210Jr43
    3Duke JohnsonMiami (FL)5'9"206Jr46
    4Melvin GordonWisconsin6'1"207rJr49
    5T.J. Yeldon Alabama6'2"221Jr50
    6David CobbMinnesota5'11"229Sr67
    7 Ameer Abdullah Nebraska5'9"195Sr71
    8Mike DavisSouth Carolina5'9"216Jr89
    9Jay Ajayi Boise State6'0"216rJr109
    10David JohnsonNorthern Iowa6'2"229rSr118
    11 Javorius AllenUSC6'1"220rJr122
    12Josh RobinsonMiss. State5'9"225Jr153
    13Cameron Artis-PayneAuburn5'10"210Sr159
    14Jeremy Langford Michigan St.6'0"205rSr166
    15Malcolm BrownTexas6'0"228Sr170
    16Matt JonesFlorida6'1"235Jr186
    17Dominique BrownLouisville6'2"216rSr207
    18Dee HartColorado St.5'9"187Jr226
    19 Karlos WilliamsFlorida State6'1"225Sr228
    20Trey WilliamsTexas A&M5'8"195Jr239
    21Terrence Magee LSU5'9"218Sr243
    22 Jahwan EdwardsBall State5'10"219Sr244
    23Kenny HilliardLSU6'0"235Sr255
    24Marcus MurphyMissouri5'9"195rSr270
    25John CrockettNorth Dakota St.6'0"217Sr280
    26Michael DyerLouisville5'9"215rSr299


4 of 16

    Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

    The fullback position isn't as widely used in the NFL as it was 20 years ago, but teams that rely on one will be surprised by the talent available in this class.

    Alabama's Jalston Fowler might be my favorite player to watch on film in the entire class. He's big, powerful, mean and can both run with the ball and block. Connor Neighbors is a wrecking ball at fullback despite not having exceptional size. 

    The guy to watch here might be South Dakota State's Zach Zenner. He didn't get a combine invite, but I do like his upside.

    Fullback Rankings
    RankPlayerSchoolHTWTClass OVR Rank
    1 Jalston FowlerAlabama6'0"248rSr181
    2Connor NeighborsLSU5'11"230rSr220
    3Michael BurtonRutgers6'0"230rSr246
    4Joey Iosefa Hawaii6'0"245Sr263

Wide Receivers

5 of 16

    Stacy Revere/Getty Images

    The 2014 draft brought us Sammy Watkins, Mike Evans and Odell Beckham Jr. atop the class (and the same order for my pre-draft rankings). The 2015 class doesn't have any one player ready to compete with last year's top three, but there is a solid group of three studs with Day 1 talent.

    Kevin White, Amari Cooper and DeVante Parker are all vying for the top spot right now, and it's a close race. White and Parker have size, length and the ability to beat defenders with their bodies, but Cooper is a silky smooth route-runner with speed. All three figure to be selected in the top 12 picks.

    The depth in this class is very good, with the wild card being former Missouri and Oklahoma wide receiver Dorial Green-Beckham. He has a checkered past, though, and how early teams will want to invest in a first-round talent with seventh-round red flags remains to be seen.    


    Wide Receiver Rankings
    RankPlayerSchoolHTWTClass OVR Rank
    1Kevin WhiteWest Virginia6'3"209Sr5
    2 Amari CooperAlabama6'1"202Jr7
    3 DeVante ParkerLouisville6'3"209Sr9
    4Devin Funchess Michigan6'5"230Jr17
    5 Jaelen StrongArizona State6'4"212rJr29
    6Devin SmithOhio State6'1"197Sr40
    7Nelson Agholor USC6'1"190Jr42
    8 Dorial Green-Beckham Oklahoma6'6"225Jr52
    9Phillip DorsettMiami (Fla.)5'10"195Sr56
    10Sammie CoatesAuburn6'2"201rJr59
    11Jamison Crowder Duke5'9"175Sr93
    12 Breshad Perriman Central Florida6'3"214rJr94
    13 Rashad GreeneFlorida State6'0"180Sr97
    14Josh HarperFresno State6'1"185rSr100
    15Justin HardyEast Carolina6'0"188Sr105
    16Tyler Lockett Kansas State5'11"175Sr110
    17Ty MontgomeryStanford6'2"215Sr116
    18 Tre McBrideWilliam & Mary6'2"205rSr130
    19Antwan Goodley Baylor5'10"225rSr133
    20Tony Lippett Michigan State6'3"190rSr135
    21 Dres AndersonUtah6'2"190Sr144
    22 Davaris DanielsNotre Dame6'2"203rJr155
    23 Devante DavisUNLV6'3"210Sr166
    24Vince Mayle Washington St.6'3"219rSr167
    25 Stefon Diggs Maryland6'0"195Jr169
    26Kenny BellNebraska6'1"185rSr179
    27 Dezmin LewisCentral Arkansas6'4"212rSr180
    28Titus DavisCentral Michigan6'2"190Sr190
    29 Rannell HallUCF6'1"200Sr193
    30Cam WorthyEast Carolina6'2"220rSr200
    31Deon LongMaryland6'0"195rSr201
    32Chris ConleyGeorgia6'3"205rSr214
    33 Christion JonesAlabama5'11"185Sr233
    34 Da'Ron BrownNorthern Illinois6'0"196Sr248
    35Chris HarperCalifornia5'11"175Jr250
    36George FarmerUSC6'1"220rJr251
    37Darren WallerGeorgia Tech6'5"241Sr252
    38 Deontay Greenberry Houston6'3"200Jr253
    39 DeAndre SmelterGeorgia Tech 6'3"222Sr259
    40Austin HillArizona6'2"210rSr260
    41Mario AlfordWest Virginia5'9"177rSr279
    42Keith Mumphery Michigan State6'0"207Sr285
    43 DeAndrew WhiteAlabama6'0"190Sr287
    44 Donatella Luckett Harding6'0"206rSr298

Tight Ends

6 of 16

    John Raoux/Associated Press

    The 2015 tight end class doesn't have that one top-10 star, but this is a very good class in terms of depth and value. 

    Maxx Williams is a classic late first-rounder who could be a stud in the right scheme. He's a baby Travis Kelce but is super athletic and has unlimited upside. And the class as a whole has a lot of raw talent. Blake Bell (a former quarterback) and Clive Walford (a former basketball player) have high ceilings and could easily outplay their draft stock.

    Tight End Rankings
    RankPlayerSchoolHTWTClass OVR Rank
    1 Maxx WilliamsMinnesota6'4"254rSo27
    2Clive Walford Miami (FL)6'4"258rSr83
    3Blake BellOklahoma6'6"259rSr98
    4Jeff Heuerman Ohio State6'5"255Sr101
    5Tyler Kroft Rutgers6'5"240rJr120
    6Ben Koyack Notre Dame6'4"261Sr132
    7E.J. Bibbs Iowa State6'3"261Sr151
    8Randall Telfer USC6'4"260rSr156
    9Nick O'Leary Florida State6'3"247Sr172
    10Jesse JamesPenn State6'7"254Jr174
    11Gerald ChristianLouisville6'3"242rSr176
    12Nick BoyleDelaware6'5"270Sr192
    13Jean Sifrin UMass6'7"250Jr194
    14Wes Saxton South Alabama 6'4"235Sr213
    15 MyCole PruittSouthern Illinois6'3"255rSr217
    16C.J. Uzomah Auburn6'4"264Sr218
    17Rory AndersonSouth Carolina6'5"227Sr275
    18Eric TomlinsonUTEP6'7"265rSr284
    19Cameron ClearTexas A&M6'6"269Sr295

Offensive Tackles

7 of 16

    Charlie Neibergall/Associated Press

    Over the last five years, an average of 4.5 tackles have gone in the first round. That trend should continue in 2015, as the tackle class looks very solid yet again.

    Seniors Brandon Scherff, La'el Collins, Cedric Ogbuehi (even with a torn ACL) and T.J. Clemmings carry Round 1 grades. Add in juniors Andrus Peat and Ereck Flowers and there are six tackles with legitimate claim to a first-round grade.

    The depth here is very good, and that's anchored by juniors D.J. Humphries, Donovan Smith and Jeremiah Poutasi. Keep an eye on each as a potential riser as evaluators have more access to tape.

    Offensive Tackle Rankings
    RankPlayerSchoolHTWTClassOVR Rank
    1Brandon ScherffIowa6'5"320rSr6
    2La'el CollinsLSU6'5"321Sr16
    3Cedric OgbuehiTexas A&M6'5"300rSr23
    4Andrus PeatStanford6'7312Jr24
    5T.J. ClemmingsPittsburgh6'5"305rSr25
    6Ereck FlowersMiami (FL)6'5"324Jr31
    7D.J. HumphriesFlorida6'5"290Jr53
    8Donovan SmithPenn State6'5"335Jr61
    9Jake FisherOregon6'6"299Sr77
    10Jeremiah PoutasiUtah6'5"344Jr78
    11Tyrus ThompsonOklahoma6'5"336rSr82
    12Rob HavensteinWisconsin6'8"327rSr95
    13Daryl WilliamsOklahoma6'6"329rSr99
    14Ty SambrailoColorado State6'5"315rSr107
    15Corey RobinsonSouth Carolina6'7"344rSr124
    16Sean HickeySyracuse6'5"300rSr149
    17Robert MyersTennessee St.6'5"310rSr185
    18Andrew DonnalIowa6'6"310rSr222
    19Austin ShepherdAlabama6'5"315Sr230
    20Mitch MorseMissouri6'6"305rSr241
    21Jamon BrownLouisville6'5"350Sr265
    22Brett BoykoUNLV6'7"310Sr277
    23Trenton BrownFlorida6'8"350Sr292
    24Tayo FabulujeTCU6'7"358Sr293

Offensive Guards

8 of 16

    Brynn Anderson/Associated Press

    Don't get your hopes up for a quick fix at offensive guard in Round 1 this year. Or Round 2. There's no Zack Martin or Joel Bitonio in this class, but remember that Brandon Linder was drafted in Round 3 and became a top starter in his rookie season.

    A.J. Cann is a good run-blocker with the athleticism to improve in the pass game to get to that high level. He's talented enough to start as a rookie. The same could be said for Senior Bowl standout Laken Tomlinson, Josue Matias, Arie Kouandjio and Tre' Jackson—all are experienced, talented guards with starter upside.

    Small-school star Ali Marpet—a player I hadn't heard of until December—is a legit starter inside too.

    Offensive Guard Rankings
    RankPlayerSchoolHTWTClassOVR Rank
    1A.J. CannSouth Carolina6'3"318rSr85
    2Laken TomlinsonDuke6'3"320rSr92
    3Josue MatiasFlorida State6'6"325Sr114
    4Ali MarpetHobart6'4"310Sr119
    5Jamil DouglasArizona State6'4"300rSr136
    6Arie KouandjioAlabama6'5"315rSr143
    7Tre' JacksonFlorida State6'4"330Sr145
    8Jarvis HarrisonTexas A&M6'3"325rSr148
    9John MillerLouisville6'2"321Sr165
    10Adam SheadOklahoma6'4"339Sr195
    11Shaq MasonGeorgia Tech6'1"300Sr196
    12Miles DieffenbachPenn State6'3"303rSr205
    13Christian LombardNotre Dame6'5"315rSr206
    14Aundrey WalkerUSC6'6"318Sr216
    15Ben BeckwithMississippi St.6'3"308rSr266
    16Jon FelicianoMiami (FL)6'4"316rSr271
    17Leon BrownAlabama6'6"320Sr274
    18Mark GlowinskiWest Virginia6'5"324rSr297


9 of 16

    Mark J. Terrill/Associated Press

    Making the transition from college center to pro center isn't easy, but it can be done well. Look at Travis Frederick or Corey Linsley as recent examples of rookies who have had a major impact on their new teams. 

    There are three players in the 2015 class who qualify as potential impact centers. Cam Erving, a former tackle, Reese Dismukes and Hroniss Grasu. Each has the athleticism and intelligence to make the jump from college to the NFL without slowing down.

    A sleeper prospect here is Greg Mancz. He's been impressive on film but is flying under the radar a bit currently. 

    Center Rankings
    RankPlayerSchoolHTWTClassOVR Rank
    1Cameron ErvingFlorida State6'5"308rSr87
    2Reese DismukesAuburn6'3"296Sr108
    3Hroniss GrasuOregon6'3"297rSr112
    4Andy GallikBoston College6'2"299rSr140
    5Greg ManczToledo6'5"300rSr204
    6B.J. FinneyKansas State6'4"301rSr238
    7Max GarciaFlorida6'5"294Sr273

Defensive Ends

10 of 16

    Nati Harnik/Associated Press

    I've taken the liberty of naming the 2015 NFL draft the "Year of the Pass-Rusher," and if you see how many players are ranked below, you'll understand why.

    An adjustment post-Senior Bowl has the class down to 25 players in my top 300 (from 32), but the overall talent is very impressive. With six players in the first round and another three (Orchard, Odighizuwa and Hunter) capable of pushing into that area, we could see nine defensive ends off the board very fast in the 2015 draft.

    Two players I like a lot who may rise with more time—Preston Smith and Trey Flowers.

    Defensive End Rankings
    RankPlayerSchoolHTWTClassOVR Rank
    1Randy GregoryNebraska6'6"245rJr3
    2Shane RayMissouri6'3"245rJr8
    3Dante Fowler Jr.Florida6'2"261Jr11
    4Alvin DupreeKentucky6'4"267rSr14
    5Eli HaroldVirginia6'4"250Jr22
    6Arik ArmsteadOregon6'7"296Jr26
    7Nate OrchardUtah6'4"255Sr37
    8Owamagbe OdighizuwaUCLA6'3"270rSr38
    9Danielle HunterLSU6'6"240Jr45
    10Mario EdwardsFlorida State6'3"294Jr55
    11Lorenzo MauldinLouisville6'4"243Sr62
    12Preston SmithMississippi St.6'5"270Sr65
    13Hau'oli KikahaWashington6'3"250rSr66
    14Trey FlowersArkansas6'4"267Sr68
    15Markus GoldenMissouri6'3"260rSr75
    16Henry AndersonStanford6'6"295rSr81
    17Za'Darius SmithKentucky6'5"264Sr134
    18Cedric ReedTexas6'6"271Sr150
    19Corey CrawfordClemson6'5"270rSr173
    20B.J. DuboseLouisville6'4"266Sr219
    21Frank ClarkMichigan6'2"270Sr221
    22Kyle EmanuelNorth Dakota St. 6'3"250rSr231
    23Anthony ChickilloMiami (Fla.)6'4"282Sr234
    24Shaquille RiddickWest Virginia6'5"242Sr247
    25Martin IfediMemphis6'3"265rSr256

Defensive Tackles

11 of 16

    Mark J. Terrill/Associated Press

    If I could rank players "1a" and "1b" at the top of my rankings, I'd put Leonard Williams up there with Jameis Winston. But I can't—or rather, I think that's cheating—so Williams comes in at No. 2 overall. For now. That may change.

    Williams is the star of the group, but nose tackle Danny Shelton is a damn good player in his own right. Shelton's lack of "wow" plays on the highlight reels is misleading, as he does the dirty work so the rest of the defense can make plays. Add in Malcom Brown, Eddie Goldman and Carl Davis, and this defensive tackle class is five deep in Round 1.

    Defensive Tackle Rankings
    RankPlayerSchoolHTWTClassOVR Rank
    1Leonard WilliamsUSC6'5"298Jr2
    2Danny SheltonWashington6'2"332Sr10
    3Malcom BrownTexas6'4"320Jr21
    4Eddie GoldmanFlorida State6'3"320Jr30
    5Carl DavisIowa6'5"315rSr35
    6Michael BennettOhio State6'2"288Sr44
    7Jordan PhillipsOklahoma6'6"334rSo54
    8Darius PhilonArkansas6'2"272rSo64
    9Ellis McCarthyUCLA6'4"331Jr70
    10Gabe WrightAuburn6'2"284Sr91
    11Rakeem Nunez-RochesSouthern Miss6'2"305rJr103
    12Xavier CooperWashington St.6'4"299Jr111
    13Christian CovingtonRice6'3"295rJr113
    14Grady JarrettClemson6'1"295Sr128
    15Tyeler DavisonFresno State6'2"309rSr147
    16Louis Trinca-PasatIowa6'2"290rSr154
    17Leon OrrFlorida6'5"319rSr160
    18Joey MbuHouston6'3"312Sr163
    19Travis RacitiSan Jose State6'5"290rSr178
    20Bobby RichardsonIndiana6'3"286Sr197
    21Derrick LottTenn-Chattanooga6'4"299rSr199
    22J.T. SurrattSouth Carolina6'1"297rSr202
    23Kaleb EullsMississippi St.6'3"295rSr226
    24Angelo BlacksonAuburn6'5"319Sr258
    25David ParryStanford6'1"308rSr261
    26Deon SimonNorthwestern St.6'4"332Sr278
    27Leterrius WaltonCentral Michigan6'5"321rSr281

Outside Linebackers

12 of 16

    Rick Scuteri/Associated Press

    With just one player ranked in the first round, the outside linebacker rankings look light, but consider that many of the defensive ends would be linebackers in a 3-4 defense and this class fills out a lot.

    Shaq Thompson could have his position listed as "Athlete," as he's played running back, safety and linebacker, but sees his pro position on the outside. He's definitely talented enough but will have to adjust to the speed of the NFL, which will stress his instincts. 

    Vic Beasley is a nice edge-rusher, but it will be a shock if he actually weighed 235 pounds in-season. Kwon Alexander and Paul Dawson are both starting-quality linebackers who have just one or two holes in their games that keep them out of the first round.

    Outside Linebacker Rankings
    RankPlayerSchoolHTWTClassOVR Rank
    1Shaq ThompsonWashington6'2"231Jr13
    2Vic BeasleyClemson6'2"235rSr36
    3Paul DawsonTCU6'2"230Sr41
    4Kwon AlexanderLSU6'2"227Jr57
    5Max VallesVirginia6'5"240Jr86
    6Jordan HicksTexas6'2"244rSr88
    7Zach HodgesHarvard6'3"235Sr106
    8Martrell SpaightArkansas6'1"231Sr125
    9Lynden TrailNorfolk St.6'6"260rSr139
    10Geneo GrissomOklahoma6'4"252rSr146
    11Tony WashingtonOregon6'3"250rSr175
    12Xzavier DicksonAlabama6'3"268Sr189
    13J.R. TavaiUSC6'2"250Sr198
    14Jake RyanMichigan6'3"238rSr210
    15Aaron DavisColorado State 6'0"220Sr212
    16Davis TullChattanooga6'2"242rSr240
    17Alani FuaBYU6'5"228rSr257
    18Edmond RobinsonNewberry6'4"230Sr288
    19Mark NzeochaWyoming6'3"239Sr290

Inside Linebackers

13 of 16

    Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

    Every NFL fan wants the next Luke Kuechly or C.J. Mosley, but unfortunately, there's no one of that level available in the 2015 class. But don't be too discouraged, as the top three linebackers here are all rookie-starter material.

    Benardrick McKinney could play any linebacker spot in a 4-3 defense and offers unreal athleticism combined with instincts and production at the "Mike" spot. Eric Kendricks and Denzel Perryman won't meet ideal height metrics, but they both can fly to the ball and have taken over games during their careers. Perryman might be the hardest hitter in the entire draft too.

    My sleeper here? Hayes Pullard. And yes, it's weird that a sleeper could come from USC, but he's being overlooked right now. 

    Inside Linebacker Rankings
    RankPlayerSchoolHTWTClass OVR Rank
    1 Benardrick McKinneyMississippi St.6'4"249rJr15
    2Eric KendricksUCLA6'0"230rSr47
    3 Denzel Perryman Miami (FL)5'11"242Sr48
    4 Stephone AnthonyClemson6'2"245Sr80
    5Mike HullPenn St.6'0"232rSr131
    6Hayes Pullard USC6'1"235rSr138
    7 Ramik WilsonGeorgia6'2"237Sr158
    8Ben Heeney Kansas6'0"230Sr183
    9A.J. JohnsonTennessee6'2"242Sr188
    10Bryce Hager Baylor6'1"235rSr209
    11Trey DePriest Alabama6'1"250Sr227
    12Damien WilsonMinnesota6'2"240Sr235
    13 Amarlo HerreraGeorgia6'1"232Sr283
    14Taiwan JonesMichigan St.6'3"252Sr302


14 of 16

    Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images

    It can't be said lightly, so here it is: There isn't a top-10 or top-15 cornerback in the 2015 draft class. Not yet, at least. 

    The draft's best cornerback—Marcus Peters—was dismissed from the Washington Huskies and will have to answer questions about his character to keep his Round 1 status. After Peters, take your pick between Trae Waynes, Jalen Collins, Kevin Johnson, Alex Carter and P.J. Williams as the top corner. Each could lay claim to that ranking depending on what you (and what NFL teams) want from the position.

    A few sleepers to track: JaCorey Shepherd, Jacoby Glenn and Imoan Claiborne.

    Cornerback Rankings
    RankPlayerSchoolHTWTClassOVR Rank
    1Marcus PetersWashington6'0"198rJr19
    2Trae WaynesMichigan State6'1"183rJr20
    3P.J. WilliamsFlorida State6'0"196Jr32
    4Jalen CollinsLSU6'2"194rJr33
    5Alex CarterStanford6'0"202rJr34
    6Kevin JohnsonWake Forest6'0"175rSr39
    7Quinten RollinsMiami (OH)6'0"203rSr58
    8Ronald DarbyFlorida State5'11"195Jr63
    9Jacoby GlennCentral Florida6'1"186rSo69
    10Charles GainesLouisville5'11"175rJr72
    11Lorenzo DossTulane5'11"187Jr74
    12Quandre DiggsTexas5'10"204Sr79
    13Steven NelsonOregon State5'11"195Sr84
    14Senquez GolsonOle Miss5'9"176Sr96
    15D'Joun SmithFlorida Atlantic5'11"190Sr104
    16Kevin WhiteTCU5'10"175rSr117
    17Ladarius GunterMiami (FL)6'2"198rSr123
    18Ifo Ekpre-OlomuOregon5'9"195Sr126
    19JaCorey ShepherdKansas5'11"195Sr142
    20Eric RoweUtah6'1"201Sr152
    21Doran GrantOhio State5'11"193Sr157
    22Imoan ClaiborneNorthwestern St 5'10"187rSr168
    23A.J. JeffersonUCLA6'1"192rSr177
    24Byron JonesConnecticut6'1"196rSr182
    25Cody RiggsNotre Dame5'9"190rSr191
    26Damian SwannGeorgia5'11"180Sr223
    27Justin ColemanTennessee5'10"190Sr229
    28Nick MarshallAuburn6'1"210Sr237
    29Julian WilsonOklahoma6'2"201rSr245
    30Craig MagerTexas State6'0"191rSr262
    31Bobby McCainMemphis5'10"192Sr267
    32Tye SmithTowson6'0"170Sr268
    33D.C. CeliscarWestern Michigan 5'11"197Sr272
    34Garry PetersClemson6'0"185rSr294
    35Cam ThomasWestern Kentucky6'1"190rSr296

Free Safeties

15 of 16

    Stephan Savoia/Associated Press

    The best free safety in college football pulled down 14 interceptions in 2014, tying the NCAA record for single-season interceptions. Now he's headed to the NFL. 

    Gerod Holliman won't be a player everyone likes, but his ability to play in coverage and attack the football in the air makes him a Round 1 talent to me. He's not a big hitter, but he'll make his money by getting the ball into his hands. 

    The rest of the safety class is good, but not overwhelmingly so. Derron Smith, Durell Eskridge, Cody Prewitt and Kurtis Drummond could all be Day 2 guys and play early in their careers, but each also has a hole in his game that makes him less than a Round 1 talent. Josh Shaw, a cornerback at USC, projects best to free safety in these rankings, so keep an eye on him. 

    Free Safety Rankings
    RankPlayerSchoolHTWTClassOVR Rank
    1Gerod HollimanLouisville6'2"213rSo28
    2Derron SmithFresno State5'11"197rSr73
    3Durell EskridgeSyracuse6'3"203rJr76
    4Cody PrewittOle Miss6'2"217Sr90
    5Josh ShawUSC6'1"200rSr102
    6Kurtis DrummondMichigan State6'1"200rSr115
    7Damarious RandallArizona State5'11"190rSr141
    8Jermaine WhiteheadAuburn5'11"193Sr224
    9Justin CoxMississippi St.6'2"190Sr264
    10Dean MarloweJames Madison 6'2"205Sr289
    11Detrick BonnerVirginia Tech6'0"194rSr312

Strong Safeties

16 of 16

    Brynn Anderson/Associated Press

    When scouting strong safeties, I'm looking for the next Sean Taylor. In the last decade, there hasn't been a player of that caliber, but he's the gold standard all others are compared to. 

    Landon Collins may get that comparison from some. He's freaky athletic, wears No. 26 and could be a top-10 pick. But he's not as insanely large as Taylor was, nor is he as good when the ball is up for grabs. Collins is a very good player, but not on the iconic level. He should still go in the top 10 picks of this draft.

    After Collins, this class is fortunate that Chris Hackett entered the draft. He's a solid hitter, can play both in the box or single-high and has shown very good range. 

    Strong Safety Rankings
    RankPlayerSchoolHTWTClass OVR Rank
    1Landon CollinsAlabama6'0"215Jr12
    2Chris HackettTCU6'2"195Jr51
    3 Jaquiski Tartt Samford6'1"218rSr121
    4Anthony HarrisVirginia6'1"190Sr127
    5Jordan RichardsStanford5'11"208Sr161
    6 Ibraheim CampbellNorthwestern5'11"205rSr162
    7James SampleLouisville6'2"191Sr171
    8Adrian AmosPenn State6'0"209rSr184
    9 Kyshoen JarrettVirginia Tech5'11"192Sr203
    10Clayton Geathers UCF6'2"208rSr236
    11 Tevin McDonaldEastern Wash.5'11"190rSr269
    12Ronald MartinLSU6'1"220Sr291