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ESPN's Kyle Bonagura writes that "Takkarist McKinley's departure will still be felt (at UCLA), but [freshman DE Jaelan] Phillips' arrival will help lessen that."

"There was an adjustment period, of course," Bonagura wrote of Phillips' work this spring, "but by the end of the 15 practices he certainly didn't look like a player who had just enrolled in school." The analyst goes so far as to write that the 6-foot-5, 230-pounder "feels like a heavy favorite to be the Pac-12 Defensive Freshman of the Year." Phillips was a five-star recruit for the 2017 cycle and ranked as ESPN's No. 1 defensive prospect in the class.
Source: ESPN.com
May 23 - 6:22 PM

ESPN's Kyle Bonagura writes that "after last year's disaster it's hard to be overly optimistic at this stage (regarding the UCLA running game)."

The Bruins finished last in the FBS in total rushing with a mere 1,011 yards rushing. They averaged just 3.72 YPC. Bonagura believes that new OC Jedd Fisch's more friendly-to-running-backs system should help, but his main concern is that there is next-to-no new blood at the position, noting that "it's essentially the same cast." Soso Jamabo -- who rushed for 321 yards in 2016 -- and Nate Starks (292 yards rushing) are expected to once again shoulder the bulk of carries for the coming season.
Source: ESPN.com
May 23 - 5:24 PM

NFL.com analyst Daniel Jeremiah compares UCLA junior QB Josh Rosen to New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning.

"In terms of how he's played the position, and maybe even athletically a little bit, I wrote down Eli Manning," Jeremiah said. Rosen threw for 3,670 passing yards and 23 touchdowns as a freshman in 2015 but regressed in 2016, largely due to a shoulder injury that cut his season in half. "He's got a firm base. You see him climb up in the pocket, and he is smooth and easy. You talk about a natural throwing motion, he's outstanding, and he's aware," Jeremiah said. "I thought he got a little bit greedy at times when he could have taken some (completions) underneath, but he does a nice job of keeping his eyes up under pressure. He needs to do a better job of giving up on a play. He takes some unnecessary sacks because of that."
Source: NFL.com
May 23 - 4:00 PM

Per NFL.com analyst Bucky Brooks, NFL scouts have "concerns" about UCLA junior QB Josh Rosen's "prickly personality and leadership skills based on interactions with teammates and coaches during his tenure."

The analyst mentions that there are also concerns about Rosen's arm strength and durability after he missed the Bruins' final six games with a shoulder injury. On the field, though, Brooks likes what he sees. "The 6-4, 218-pound junior is everything that coaches and scouts covet in a traditional pocket passer," Brooks wrote. "Rosen can make every throw in the book with pinpoint placement and accuracy while also showing a feathery touch."
Source: NFL.com
May 18 - 2:40 PM

An NFC area scout ranks UCLA QB Josh Rosen as the No. 4 draft-eligible quarterback prospect in the nation.

The scout puts Rosen behind Sam Darnold, Josh Allen and Lamar Jackson. "Rosen has huge talent and lacks intangibles," the scout told Walter Football's Charlie Campbell. "He is a prototypical pocket guy. I love his talent, but his own teammates don't like him. Being a prick is one thing, but there aren't many quarterbacks who stick around long-term and are successful that couldn't get along well with their teammates." Right or wrong, Rosen's character has been under attack recently as the NFL turns their attention to the 2018 draft crop. The MMQB's Albert Breer spoke to an AFC executive earlier this month who called Rosen a "mess" off the field.
May 16 - 2:47 PM

247 Sports reports that UCLA junior Soso Jamabo was running with better pad level this spring.

Jamabo was one of the nation's most disappointing players last season, and the Bruins’s running game as a whole was wretched, ranking last in the Pac-12. To be fair to Jamabo, the Bruins' line was terrible in 2016, its offensive gameplans were clueless and Josh Rosen missed half the season to injury. New offensive coordinator Jedd Fisch's system will be far more friendly to Jamabo, and it should give Jamabo plenty more opportunities to bounce outside via stretch plays.
Source: 247 Sports
May 15 - 2:10 PM

UCLA junior QB Josh Rosen (shoulder) completed 14-of-18 passes for 83 yards, a touchdown and an interception in the team's spring game.

The numbers themselves are not particularly meaningful -- though it was nice to see Rosen putting the ball on the money -- but perhaps the best takeaway for the Bruins when it comes to their star junior this spring is that Rosen has shown no signs of physical setback with his surgically-repaired shoulder. It would appear that he will be a full-go for August camp as he looks to put his best foot forward in 2017, before a potential declaration for the 2018 NFL Draft.
May 6 - 12:26 PM

Rotoworld's Evan Silva assigned the Falcons a "C" grade for their draft.

The Falcons traded up to take UCLA OLB Takk McKinley with the No. 26 overall pick, then traded out of Rd. 2, picking up a third-rounder used on LSU LB Duke Riley and a pair of fifth-rounders used on San Diego State CB Damontae Kazee and Wyoming RB Brian Hill. "The Falcons have annually crushed the draft since Scott Pioli joined the front office. While this group was low on quantity, I liked its makeup for a team with very few needs," Silva wrote. Draft Analyst's Tony Pauline and ESPN's Mel Kiper were both higher on the class, grading it as a "B+" and "B-," respectively.
Source: Rotoworld
May 4 - 2:42 PM

The MMQB's Albert Breer spoke to one AFC executive who called UCLA QB Josh Rosen a "mess" off the field.

On top off that statement, the exec notes Rosen is coming off a shoulder injury. "He needs to grow up, but the talent is off the charts," the NFL evaluator told Breer. As always keep this note in mind on anonymous quotes on a prospect's personality: you are trusting a person you have never met describing another person you've never met. It is stunning that an executive feels the need to put this information out there less than a week after the 2017 NFL Draft.
Source: The MMQB
May 4 - 10:39 AM

In his first 2018 mock draft, FOX Sports' Dieter Kurtenbach pegs UCLA junior QB Josh Rosen to the Bills with the No. 7 pick.

"The Bills move on from Tyrod Taylor and go with Rosen, who showed flashes of greatness when he was healthy at UCLA," explains Kurtenbach. While the 6-foot-4, 210-pound Rosen has the potential to land as a top-10 pick, he still has questions to shore up on multiple fronts during the coming season. Among those, he is coming off of shoulder surgery (reportedly healthy this spring) and will need to show off more consistency than we have seen thus far in his young career). Those "flashes" that Kurtenbach references might need to turn into full-fledged fireworks in 2017 if Rosen is to live up to the immense hype heaped upon him out of high school.
Source: FOX Sports
Apr 30 - 3:57 PM

Patriots selected UCLA OT Conor McDermott with the No. 211 overall pick in the 2017 NFL draft.

McDermott (6’8/307) made 32 starts at UCLA, dabbling at tight end before settling in at left tackle and earning second-team All-Pac 12 from the conference’s coaches as a junior and senior. McDermott is blessed with long arms (34 3/4") and massive hands (11"), and passable, 42nd-percentile athleticism. It remains worrisome that McDermott was dominated in his 2016 matchup with Texas A&M’s Myles Garrett, surrendering 11 QB pressures in that game alone. A waist bender lacking power and vulnerable to the bull rush, McDermott is a long shot to develop into a viable NFL starter.
Apr 29 - 5:09 PM

Titans selected UCLA LB Jayon Brown with the No. 155 overall pick in the 2017 NFL draft.

Brown (6’0/231) succeeded Myles Jack at middle linebacker, making 21 starts and tallying nine career tackles for loss with 15 pass breakups, two forced fumbles, and five fumble recoveries. Brown led the Pac 12 in tackles (119) as a senior, earning first-team all-conference recognition. Severely undersized for an NFL linebacker, Brown’s calling cards are his stingy coverage skills and extensive special teams background. With adequate 4.67 speed, Brown has some potential to become a Wesley Woodyard-type player.
Apr 29 - 2:34 PM

Raiders selected UCLA DT Eddie Vanderdoes with the No. 88 overall pick in the 2017 NFL draft.

Vanderdoes (6’3/305) arrived at UCLA as the nation’s No. 1 defensive line recruit, yet battled repeated knee, foot, and weight problems, managing 12.5 career tackles for loss, 3.5 sacks, and two forced fumbles. Vanderdoes ballooned north of 350 pounds at times before dropping weight during the pre-draft phase. Nonetheless physically gifted, Vanderdoes tested as a top-four athlete among defensive linemen at February’s Combine. While Vanderdoes has always been long on potential, he hasn’t realized it since high school. He could become a plus starter or fall out of the league before his rookie contract is up.
Apr 28 - 10:48 PM

Redskins selected UCLA CB Fabian Moreau with the No. 81 overall pick in the 2017 NFL draft.

Moreau (6’1/206) made 40 starts in UCLA's secondary, managing 4.5 career tackles for loss and three interceptions and only earning honorable mention All-Pac 12 as a fifth-year senior. Following a nondescript college career, Moreau used the Combine as a springboard with 99th-percentile athletic results, including 4.35 jets and springy vertical (38") and broad (11’4") jumps. Moreau is flush with traits, but he missed most of 2015 with a Lisfranc fracture and tore his pectoral during the pre-draft phase. Moreau is a wildcard who could conceivably become a big-time NFL corner or flame out in a few years.
Apr 28 - 10:28 PM

Falcons selected UCLA OLB Takk McKinley with the No. 26 overall pick in the 2017 NFL draft.

The Falcons traded the Nos. 31, 95 and 249 for the right to move up five spots. McKinley (6’2/250) spent three years at UCLA after transferring from JUCO, starting the final two and racking up 29 tackles for loss with 17 sacks and five forced fumbles. He earned first-team All-Pac 12 from the conference’s coaches as a senior. PFF College charted McKinley with only two missed tackles over his final two seasons. A high school track star, McKinley ripped up the forty (4.64) in Indy, also impressing in the broad jump (10’2") and measuring in with vine-line arms (34 ¾"). McKinley is presently recovering from shoulder surgery, but his long-term pass-rush potential is mouth-watering.
Apr 27 - 11:17 PM


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