3-4 NT and 3-4OLB look very ripe for matching need to BPA. My current 3-4 targets and estimated chance of being available: NT
John Jenkins 95% OLB
Jarvis Jones 10% unless medical red flags kick in, then higher
Damontre Moore 5%
Dion Jordan 60%
the latest: Mingo
- While there is no debate as to Mingo’s athleticism, there definitely is a split as to where he should be drafted and how successful he can be in the NFL. An explosive athlete with rare first step quickness, Mingo can get to the turn point in a flash and has the athleticism to beat OT inside and out. However, more than a few scouts I spoke to wondered why he did not make an impact in every game he played and wasn’t LSU’s most productive pass rusher. Not only are NFL people split on Mingo’s production, but some wonder if his lack of consistent production comes from a lack of aggressiveness and size. His tendency to get upright and lose the leverage battle hinders his ability to shed and get off blocks once they engage him. I have no doubt that Mingo’s athleticism will jump out at the Combine and his Pro Day, which will lead to him being a first round pick, but to say that NFL people are split on how good of a player he will become is an understatement. LINK Chase Thomas
- OLB Stanford (3rd or 4th Rd)- After a highly productive career playing outside linebacker in Stanford’s 34 defense, Thomas struggled when asked to play off the ball so often as a 43 outside linebacker at the Senior Bowl. When I spoke to scouts it was amazing how the split of opinions on how he would do in the NFL was almost completely based on defensive scheme. For those teams that play 43 defenses where outside linebackers need to excel in coverage, Thomas’ value is low. However, for 34 teams he is viewed as a potential starter who could be drafted as early as the third round. NFL people told us that when Thomas is going forward rushing the passer and playing the run that he looks like a future starting linebacker, but when he plays off the ball in coverage he does not look like a player who can contribute on an NFL defense. It will be interesting to see where Thomas ends up being drafted after hearing such varying opinions about his NFL potential. LINK Jarvis Jones
- Georgia outside linebacker Jarvis Jones had been one of the most dominant football players in college football the past two seasons. He's destroyed the SEC for those two years, as many consider him to be one of the most talented players in the 2013 NFL Draft class. Jones is on top of my 2013 NFL Draft Big Board, as well as ESPN's Mel Kiper's.
However, after speaking with scouts at the East-West Shrine Game who have Jones in their territory, they say they expect Jones to slide down and fall out of the top five next April.
The scouts said there are a few reasons that could add up to Jones falling into the 6-10 range. First of all, the scouts said that Jones is not a good workout guy. They don't believe that he is going to test well or stand out in the Combine or pre-draft workouts. Area scouts who cover Georgia say that Jones is not a weight-room guy. He doesn't put a lot of work in during the week, but would show up on Saturday and dominate naturally.
They said that Jones is a good guy and a good teammate, but just isn't a tireless worker. As one scout said, "Don't get me wrong, if you watch his tapes you'll say he is worth being the No. 1 rated player and going in the top five of the draft. You can watch him on Saturdays and see that this guy is animal. He's clearly the best player on the field, but not a guy that you'll be in love with during the week. Add in the medical concern and with the testing, and I think he's going to slide some on Draft Day."
Jones' medical condition is a spinal stenosis that happened as a freshman at USC. On a routine hit against Oregon, Jones sustained the injury. A specialist told him he would be fine, but USC's doctors wouldn't clear him and told him he should retire from football. After transferring to Georgia, Jones broke out as one of the best players in college football. LINK Hankins
- Overall, I’m not sure why Hankins is rated so highly by most analysts. He certainly has potential, but he doesn’t consistently fire off of the ball. There’s burst to his game, but he displays it so infrequently that you have to wonder if decreased NFL snaps will really help him that much. For being an average or even slightly below-average pass-rushing defensive tackle, you’d expect Hankins to be an absolutely dominant run defender. He’s really good in that area, but not to the extent that any team should be using a top 10 pick on the guy.
NFL Comparison: Aubrayo Franklin
Like Hankins, veteran defensive tackle Aubrayo Franklin is a run-stuffer up the middle. Franklin hasn’t registered a sack since 2009, and while I don’t think Hankins will be that poor as a pass-rusher at the next level, I think he’s going to struggle to stay on the field in passing situations. That’s fine, but probably not worthy of a first-round pick.
Projection: Hankins could potentially get selected in the top 10, although it’s more likely that he’ll fall into the teens. In my view, Hankins is a mid- or even late-second round talent that’s going to be poor value for whoever picks him. LINK
Hankins was a highly productive defensive tackle for Ohio State the past two seasons. He was second on the team in tackles in 2011 with 67 and had 55 as a junior while facing double teams. An NFL team will have to monitor his snap counts so he doesn't wear down. Will probably have to continue working on his fitness.
Was criticized by coaches as a freshman for wearing too much and was called a two-down player by defensive coordinator Jim Heacock. Dropped down to 330 pounds as a sophomore and 317 as a junior. Still, NFL teams may be wary of his weight issues.
As we saw with Dontari Poe in the 2012 draft, massive defensive tackles with athleticism get picked early. The same will likely happen with Hankins.
Pro comparison: Phil Taylor, Cleveland Browns LINK Jenkins
- NFL Network's Mike Mayock called Georgia NT John Jenkins' hot-and-cold motor the biggest concern for Jenkins' NFL outlook.
"When he's healthy, when he's not winded, when he turns that motor on, it's special," Mayock said. "And you want him to be your 3-4 nose tackle or your nose shade in the 4-3. You want this kid as a two-gapping run stuffer. You want him pushing the pocket. But too often, you don't see that." Motor is often a concern for mammoth defensive linemen. Jenkins weighed in at an unruly 6-foot-3 7/8 and 359 pounds this week. LINK Jordan
- Have been told Dion Jordan/Oregon likely to workout at combine and wait on (shoulder)
surgery. Expect more in few days. LINK
This post was edited on 2/6 at 9:19 am