Week ten of the college football season was jam packed with exciting finished, including two undefeated teams almost going down. Here’s a look at a few of the 2013 NFL Draft prospects that helped or hurt their draft stock.
Kenjon Barner, RB, Oregon, Senior
The biggest knock on Barner coming into the season was whether he was able to carry the load at the next level. With Oregon blowing out many of its opponents Barner hasn’t had the opportunity to tote the ball with any consistency. That changed on Saturday when Barner ran 38 times for the Ducks against USC. Barner was unstoppable as he amassed 324 yards and 5 TD’s on the night. The 5’11″, 195 senior may have helped himself this week as he looks to jump into the second day of April’s draft.
Matt Elam, SS, Florida, Junior
With the cream of this safety crop struggling to find their way in 2012, Elam is emerging as the top safety prospect for 2013. Elam continued his spectacular season on Saturday as the Gators were able to hold on to the victory over Missouri. Elam was a force in run support with 6 tackles, picked a pass off and took it 42 yards, and played centerfield as well as anyone can expect. Elam’s versatility in all facets of the game could have him coming off the board late on day one if he declares.
Sharrif Floyd, DT, Florida, Junior
Floyd is steadily rising up draft boards as the season progresses. Saturday’s performance against Missouri should help out the juniors cause. Floyd didn’t record a sack but was a presence in the Tiger’s backfield for most of the day. Floyd finished the day with five tackles and three tackles for loss, giving him 10 TFL on the season. Floyd outplayed Sheldon Richardson, who I have as a top 20 pick in April’s draft.
Gerald Hodges, LB, Penn State, Senior
Michael Mauti gets most of the attention on this defense and deservedly so. It was Hodges that was most impressive this Saturday. Hodges showed off his athleticism against Purdue as he was making plays sideline to sideline. He finished the day with eight tackles, three tackles for loss, and broke up a pass. Hodges excels in coverage as he appears to be a three down linebacker in the NFL. Hodges could be making a case as a top 100 prospect in the 2013 NFL Draft.
Daimion Stafford, S, Nebraska, Senior
Stafford was a guy that almost made this list last week as I thought he was the best defensive prospect on either side of the Michigan-Nebraska game. I thought the same this week against Michigan State and that includes William Gholston. Stafford was a force in stopping the MSU running game as he finished with 12 tackles and a forced fumble. Stafford went from a late round prospect to an early day three type player with his play this season.
T.J. McDonald, S, USC, Senior
It’s been a rough season for a guy that some believed to be a potential first round pick. McDonald’s struggles continued on Saturday as the Trojans defense was shredded by Kenjon Barner and the rest of the Oregon offense. McDonald was outclassed by the Oregon speed as he was out of position for most of the night, leading to big runs for Barner. McDonald is stiff in coverage and has a propensity to take bad angles to the ball. He’s a late day two prospect for me with this season’s tape.
Nico Johnson, LB, Alabama, Senior
There were concerns entering the season with Johnson’s ability to play the pass and they haven’t been eased. Johnson struggled to cover the backs out of the backfield all night against LSU. He was beaten twice for big plays and may have shown he was a two down linebacker at the next level. This tape will hurt Johnson’s draft stock as he appears to be a day three prospect at this point.