Whether you enjoy college football or just want to gauge the talent pool for next year, we’ve got you covered. The purpose of this article is to provide information that can help you better assess the trade value of your first or second rounders as the season progresses. This way when you make a trade that involves rookie draft picks, you have a better idea of what those picks are worth.
Here are my notes from the prospects’ games I had the opportunity to watch.
* denotes player NOT eligible for 2013 draft.
Texas A&M at Mississippi State
Players spotlighted: Johnny Manziel*, QB Texas A&M
I brought up Manziel a few weeks ago after his matchup against LSU and highlighted some of the raw potential he has. Well I’ve followed his two games since (Auburn and Mississippi State) and he’s been nothing short of spectacular in those matchups. He’s really starting to grow on me as a prospect. Right now most will call him a great college quarterback, but won’t take him seriously as a legit pro prospect, mainly because he runs so much.
For me, he’s the definition of a duel threat quarterback. He’s run for over 100 yards in five games this season – that wouldn’t be a big deal if he hadn’t also thrown for over 250 yards in six games as well. He now has 16 touchdowns passing and 15 touchdowns rushing. Keep in mind this is against SEC competition.
The biggest game of his young career comes this week against the number one everything Alabama Crimson Tide. He struggled against LSU a few weeks ago and I’m looking for some growth between that game and this one. I think there’s something there in this kid so I’ll be tuning in.
Oregon at USC
Players spotlighted: Kenjon Barner*, RB Oregon; Silas Redd, RB USC
Barner is one of the most electrifying players in college football. He’s stepped in for LaMichael James and the Oregon offense hasn’t missed a beat. You either believe or you don’t that he’s a product of the Oregon offense. I’m on the skeptical side. Can he play at the next level? Sure, but his size (5’9”, 190 lbs) is a concern and too many of his runs are bounced to the outside where he simply outruns the pursuit. We all know that’s not going to cut it at the NFL level. However, there’s no doubt he’s a dynamic playmaker and can excel in a specialized role. In the right system he could develop into a PPR valued player – there are just too many variables and “what if’s” for me right now.
I haven’t covered Silas Redd much because I’ve been on the fence on him. I like that he’s a physical runner that pounds out the tough yards. He breaks tackles and reads his blocking well. His strength is running in a zone blocking scheme where he makes the one cut and goes. Other than that, there’s not much else that stands out. Much of his NFL value is predicated on a team’s depth chart situation. The player he most resembles is Alfred Morris.
Below are my top 35 dynasty prospects as of 11/10/2012.
1. Geno Smith, QB West Virginia:
2. Marqise Lee*, WR USC
His play amazes me each and every week. The catches he makes, the run after catch, his fluid movement, and his concentration are all on an elite level. He’s just an amazing talent.
3. Sammy Watkins*, WR Clemson
4. Justin Hunter, WR Tennessee
He had one of those “this is why I’m the best receiver in the class” type games. In the first half alone he hauled in six receptions for 104 yards and two touchdowns. It could have and should have been a third touchdown, but Bray just missed him. Hunter finished with 191 yards on nine receptions and managed to haul in a third touchdown later in the game. He’s an elite prospect rivaling AJ Green territory. What separates the two is Green’s ability to track the ball and attack it like few can. Hunter is not quite there yet on that front.
5. Keenan Allen, WR California
Currently battling a knee injury and missed last week’s game.
6. Todd Gurley*, RB Georgia
7. Giovani Bernard, RB North Carolina
8. Stepfan Taylor, RB Stanford
9. Eddie Lacy, RB Alabama
Every time I think Lacy may make a move to the top spot of running backs he gets injured. This is what I dinged him on in the preseason and has stayed with him all season. It happened again against LSU this past week. He was playing well, running hard and physical against a very tough LSU defense. He was rolling along with 77 yards on 8 first half carries but didn’t play much in the second half due to an ankle injury. I still bumped him up the list this week because of how much of a force he was when he played.
10. Andre Ellington, RB Clemson
11. Robert Woods, WR USC
12. DeAndre Hopkins, WR Clemson
13. Marquess Wilson, WR Washington State
A strange twist took place this week when Wilson suddenly quit the team. Apparently Wilson has been battling his head coach Mike Leach because he’s been asked to work harder on more than one occasion. As a result, the team has suspended him. Sounds like a, “you can’t fire me, I quit” thing and not a good situation for an aspiring NFL receiver. We’ll have to monitor the situation and wait for more information to come out.
14. T.J Yeldon*, RB Alabama
15. Tavon Austin, WR West Virginia
A cross between T.Y. Hilton and Kendall Wright as a player. When he’s running north/south and not east/west he’s as dangerous as it gets.
16. Terrence Williams, WR Baylor
17. Cardarrell Patterson, WR Tennessee
He’s a must-see with the ball in his hands. He has the speed, agility, and his ability to make tacklers miss is off the charts. He’s shown recent signs of improved route running as well.
18. Ameer, Abdulla*, RB Nebraska
19. Tyler Wilson, QB Arkansas
20. Tyler Eifert, TE Notre Dame
21. Matt Barkley, QB USC
22. Dennis Johnson, RB Arkansas
He’s been playing really well in recent weeks and has taken full advantage of Davis’ woes this season. He now has back to back 100 yard efforts and is climbing the draft board. His 5’8” frame may turn some teams off and others may stereotype him into a specialty or change-of-pace running back role. I feel he’s more than capable of being an every down back because his body type. He comes in at 213 lbs and is ALL solid. He’s built a lot like the compact Ray Rice (no, I’m not saying he’s the next Ray Rice) and also possesses the hands as well. I’m keeping an eye on his draft landing spot and look forward to putting my own eyes on him at the Senior Bowl practices.
23. Jonathan Franklin, RB UCLA
24. Knile Davis, RB Arkansas
Now battling a bad hamstring on top of the underwhelming play. He did not suit up this week. I’m sure he’s looking for the reset button for this season.
25. Duke Johnson*, RB Miami, FL
Starting to get healthy again and his big play ability is coming back.
26. Tyler Bray, QB Tennessee
He’s continued to grow as a passer each week now. His 530 yards passing and five touchdown day marks the second consecutive week where he’s been on a clear ascend. Still has the occasional head scratching throw but those are becoming less frequent. He’s improving and showing some consistency. In terms of just pure physical talent, there aren’t many better at the position. With Bray it’s all about getting the mental side to catch up with the physical abilities. Let’s see how he finishes the season.
27. Da’Rick Rogers, WR Tennessee Tech
28. Mike Gillislee, RB Florida
29. Logan Thomas, QB Virginia Tech
Still way more dangerous as a runner than passer right now. Thomas needs to return to school for his senior year.
30. Joseph Randle, RB Oklahoma State
31. Jordan Reed, TE Florida:
32. Le’Veon Bell, RB Michigan State
I’ve been thinking about the Bell a lot in terms of his draft value. I’m really finding it hard to understand why so many sites hold Bell in such high regard. Most have him in their top three and I’m struggling to see it. He’s neither fast nor quick. He does have good agility and hands for a big back but given the NFL game today I’m not sure it will translate to production. To me, when I watch Bell play I see Toby Gerhart. Frankly, I think Gerhart is a better player.
33. Christine Michael, RB Texas A&M
34. Jawan Jamison, RB Rutgers
35. Montee Ball, RB Wisconsin
Paymon Shokoohi is an NCAA/NFL skill position analyst, Senior Writer for DLF and can be found on Twitter @setmyroster and in the forums as dlf_paymons.