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An AFC general manager said Oregon redshirt junior QB Marcus Mariota would have been the best QB in the 2014 draft if he'd declared early.

"He probably needs a year to grow and develop, but he's shown he can throw in an offense that has been successful in the NFL," the general manager said. "His arm strength is good; his release is quick; and he's accurate downfield. On top of all that, he has great feet." Mariota has thrown 63 touchdown passes and just 10 interceptions in two seasons, rushing for 1,467 yards. "At one point late last season, he was thought to be a legitimate challenger to Jadeveon Clowney as the top prospect in this year's class," wrote ESPN's Jeffri Chadiha. ESPN draft analyst Todd McShay said Mariota "is the kind of player who eats, drinks and sleeps football. I think he's better than [San Francisco's] Colin Kaepernick was at this point in his career." McShay added: "With Mariota, you're not taking a risk on talent because he has so much potential. You're taking a risk on whether he can develop."
Source: ESPN.com
Thu, May 15, 2014 07:57:00 PM

West Virginia WR Kevin White said he should be chosen over Alabama's Amari Cooper because "I think I bring a lot more to the table."

"Amari Cooper is a great receiver, a great competitor, but I think I bring a lot more to the table," White said. "He's at Alabama with Nick Saban. They have a whole bunch of other tools that help him out where he's not getting double-covered. A lot of attention is not just strictly on Amari Cooper. ... On West Virginia, it's just, 'OK, let's shut Kevin White down.' They have a lot of attention toward me." The comments likely won't be well received in Morgantown and they certainly won't be received well by WVU coach Dana Holgorsen, but you can't easily argue when he cites his time at JUCO in saying "I haven't learned or been taught the little secrets" about being a wide receiver. Of course, Cooper could just as easily say that the Mountaineers threw on 48.7 percent of their plays against 44.3 percent passes for the Tide. White also only had one good collegiate season, which is why Football Outsiders' Playmaker Score ranked him as the No. 8 receiver.
Source: NFL.com
Mar 31 - 10:02 PM

NFL Media analyst Lance Zierlein ranks FSU QB Jameis Winston as the No. 5 quarterback in the past five years.

This is quite a different opinion than that of ESPN's Todd McShay, who has said all winter that he grades Winston behind only Andrew Luck amongst QB prospects that came out in the past 10 years. Zierlein said the following prospects all would have been drafted ahead of Winston: Cam Newton, Sam Bradford, Luck and Robert Griffin III. Colleague Gil Brandt called Winston "an elite talent" and said he was one of the top 10 quarterback talents of the past decade. "Outside of the perceived negativeness about his character, it's very hard to find something negative about the guy," Brandt says. Daniel Jeremiah mentioned Winston's comparisons range from former Raiders quarterback JaMarcus Russell to Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger. "You've got JaMarcus Russell on the bust end and then you've got Ben Roethlisberger as the ultimate of what he could be with his skill set," Jeremiah said. "I'm not concerned with him being another JaMarcus Russell."
Source: NFL.com
Mar 31 - 7:33 PM

FSU QB Jameis Winston is "the clear choice for the No. 1 overall pick by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers," wrote ESPN's Todd McShay.

McShay, as you might already be aware, grades Winston behind only Andrew Luck amongst QB prospects in the past 10 years, and on the same level as Ben Roethlisberger and Matt Ryan as prospects. "To me, Winston has the look of a No. 1 overall pick based on what he's done on the field, and I consider him the most likely player to go with the first choice, unless the Bucs feel like they can't trust him off the field," McShay wrote.
Mar 31 - 6:17 PM

CBS Sports Dane Brugler reports that Miami RB Duke Johnson (hamstring) is expected to be a full participant at Wednesday's pro day.

In other words, Johnson intends to take part in all tests in addition to position drills. Priority No. 1 for the talented runner is improving upon his combine 40-yard dash after posting a disappointing 4.54 in Indianapolis. That number, of course, could have been affected by a right hamstring strain. Because of that injury, Johnson didn't run the shuttles or the three-cone drill at the combine. Expect all 32 teams to simply migrate south after taking in FSU's pro day on Thursday. They'll also check out OT Ereck Flowers, LB Denzel Perryman, TE Clive Walford, DE Anthony Chickillo, WR Phillip Dorsett, DB Ladarius Gunter and OL Jon Feliciano.
Source: CBS Sports
Mar 31 - 5:43 PM

FSU QB Jameis Winston said the Buccaneers should make him the No. 1 overall pick in the draft.

"Because I'm the best player in the draft," Winston said. Tuesday's pro day in Tallahassee was a star-studded affair, attended by such luminaries as Pittsburgh head coach Mike Tomlin and the Saints' Sean Payton. Of course, Tampa Bay sent just about everyone on the payroll, including coach Lovie Smith, general manager Jason Licht, offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter and quarterbacks coach Mike Bajakian. "He had a great day," Licht said. "He threw a full nine innings." When asked if he made a good impression, Winston said: "I know I did." Barring an 11th-hour change of heart, Winston will be announced as the No. 1 pick in roughly 30 days, three hours and thirty minutes.
Source: ESPN.com
Mar 31 - 5:27 PM

QB "guru" George Whitfield said he was told by one NFL source Jameis Winston was "shadowed on a Combine flight" by another team.

Never change, NFL. For real, the NFL thinks they have no limits, critiquing every prospects' "character" like they have been trained for it and pulling off amateur spy tactics like this. There have been other stories of teams wanting to put players in social situations to observe behavior. We wonder how the people making these decisions would react in such situations.
Mar 31 - 2:36 PM

Washington DT Danny Shelton is scheduled to visit the Browns prior to the draft, according to Aaron Wilson.

Many have linked Shelton to the Browns during the process. Phil Taylor is on the final year of his deal, so the fit makes sense from that perspective. Many believe Shelton can help on all three downs, including upfield disruption. We aren't so sure.
Mar 31 - 1:56 PM

Indiana WR Shane Wynn will visit the Raiders and Browns, according to Aaron Wilson.

Wynn recorded a 36-inch vertical and 10-foot broad at his pro day. Both Wilson and Tony Pauline reported times under 4.3 seconds for Wynn's forty. Wynn stands 5'7/167 lbs, so the speed could allow him to find a role and compensate for size.
Mar 31 - 11:01 AM

The Cowboys and Eagles put Utah OL Jeremiah Poutasi through a private workout, according to Tony Pauline.

Poutasi is a powerful blocker who many project to move inside in the NFL. The Utah product has played both tackle spots, and some teams could view that as positional versatility. He tested like a below average athlete.
Mar 31 - 10:52 AM

Stanford T Andrus Peat is scheduled to visit the Jets on Thursday, according to Kimberly A. Martin.

We aren't sure where Peat could be targeted in the draft. He is almost certainly a first-round pick, but No. 6 is not in his projected range. Peat is extremely powerful moving forward in the running game but lacks the same strength in pass protection and gives up a handful of negative plays per game. He will likely stay on the left side in the NFL.
Mar 31 - 10:42 AM

Alabama WR Amari Cooper will visit the Jets on Thursday, according to Kimberly A. Martin.

The move makes a lot of sense even with the Jets' added talent in the last two offseasons. The team took three receivers in last year's draft, but again, that should not prevent a team from selecting a talent like Amari who has traits that easily translate to the NFL. Those types of prospects are difficult to find, especially this year. Cooper wins on the ground with burst, acceleration run after the catch and little wasted movement. He is not a contested catch receiver, however.
Mar 31 - 10:36 AM




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