NFL's Future

2014 NFL Mock Draft

2014 NFL Draft Top 100 Rankings

Posted by Brad On March - 19 - 20143 COMMENTS

"Robert Herron"

We kicked our rankings off with a pre-Combine top 75 and have completed our assessments on the 2014 draft class. While there aren’t many changes to this list, we’ve added an additional 25 to take it to the totality of our evaluations for this year.

The one major change is moving Greg Robinson to the top spot. I feel like I’ll have to justify this one a little, so here’s goes my attempt. Robinson is as dominant a run blocker as I’ve evaluated. His upside as a pass protector is off the charts making me believe in the long-term he’s going to wind up the best player to come out of this draft. Yes, even with Jadeveon Clowney.

1. Greg Robinson, OT, Auburn

Why I think he’s deserving: This kid is special. I think he’s maybe the highest ceiling prospect in the entire draft. Sure he’s not an experience pass protector but his skill set suggests with time he could dominate in that area. He’s an NFL-ready run blocker on day one. In our last rankings he was sitting third but his upside is so high that I think he ultimately winds up the best player in this draft – at a premium position

Where he fits: Could play on the left or right side but long-term he’s a franchise LT in my book.

Projection: Top 10 – could go as high as 2 to St. Louis

2. Teddy Bridgewater, QB, Louisville

Why I think he’s deserving: Teddy may not provide the highest upside of the 2014 QB’s but one could certainly make the argument that he’s the most ready to play of the bunch. If I were Houston, this would be my guy.

Where he fits: I’d like to see him with a warm weather team, perhaps in the AFC South. His hand size is a bit concerning when you’re talking about Cleveland.

Projection: Could go as high as one and the floor for me is at 8 with Minnesota.

3. Jadeveon Clowney, DE, South Carolina

Why I think he’s deserving: You can question his motor, how much he loves the game, and some of his decisions on and off the field – but you can’t question is freakish ability. He’s just too rare of a find to fall far and his scheme diversity will have all 32 teams interested.

Where he fits: Five, seven, or nine technique. Pick one. He’s a guy you take and plug him into your defense regardless of scheme – all 32 teams would love to have the problem of finding a fit for him.

Projection: Could go as high as one and the floor for me is at 6 with Atlanta. If he makes it past Houston, the trade market at No. 2 with St. Louis could heat up.

4. Khalil Mack, Edge Rusher, Buffalo

"Khalil Mack"

Kevin Hoffman-US PRESSWIRE

Why I think he’s deserving: If all you saw was the Ohio State tape, you’ve seen enough. This kid could play anywhere in the country and dominate so forget about the low level of competition. He’s athletic, physical, has plus instincts.

Where he fits: Weakside backer in a three-man front or strongside LB in a four-man front.

Projection: Top 10.

5. Sammy Watkins, WR, Clemson

Why I think he’s deserving: There’s no more dynamic player in the entire draft – maybe outside of John Football. Watkins is a threat to take it the distance with each touch. Has experience playing inside and outside at the collegiate level – the problem will be finding him enough touches at the next level.

Where he fits: As I said, he’s played inside and outside at Clemson and either suits him equally well. He’s a guy that DC’s will have nightmares about trying to keep the ball out of his hands.

Projection: Top 10 – floor is at 10 with Detroit. Read the rest of this entry » «2014 NFL Draft Top 100 Rankings»

"NFL Free Agency" It’s that time of the year again. Time for fanbases to fall over the edge about their 2014 hopes and dreams based on guys that will likely be overpaid and underproduce. Synical, yes – but I’m right there with loving every minute of this old player, new team bliss. Let’s recap what we think we know before the click strikes 4:00 PM. Branden Albert is heading to the Dolphins possibly to the tune of $10 million a year. The Cleveland Browns have been tied to every free agent out there. Darrelle Revis is done in Tampa. The cash dam has broke for a whole host of guys staying with their current teams. And this is just the beginning of it. Sit back and enjoy as you hit the refresh button on NFL’s Future for at least the next two hours as we learn where Jairus Byrd, Eugene Monroe, and others will land.

 

Wednesday’s deals

 

11:29 PM: Eric Decker I New Team: New York Jets I Deal: 5 yeasr, $36.25 million, $15 million guaranteed I Source: Adam Schefter

 

10:06 PM: Scott Bair reports Rodger Saffold failed his physical with the Raiders, nullifying his deal

 

8:45 PM: Breno Giacomini I New Team: New York Jets I Deal: Unknown I Source: Aaron Wilson

8:23 PM: Darrelle Revis I New Team: New England Patriots I Deal: 1 year, $12 million I Source: Adam Schefter

 

7:53 PM: Al Woods I New Team: Tennessee Titans I Deal: 2 years, $5 million I Source: Ed Bouchette

7:19 PM: Matt Shaughnessy I New Team: Arizona Cardinals I Deal: Unknown I Source: Kent Sommers

6:24 PM: Keith Rivers I New Team: Buffalo Bills I Deal: 2 years, $5 million I Source: James Walker

5:53 PM: The Tennessee Titans have released OT David Stewart per Ian Rapoport

5:34 PM: Mike Neal I New Team: Green Bay Packers I Deal: 2 years I Source: Mike Neal Twitter

5:30 PM: Corey Graham I New Team: Buffalo Bills I Deal: 4 years, $16 million I Source: Adam Caplan

5:14 PM: Tony McDaniel I New Team: Seattle Seahawks I Deal: 2 years, $6.3 million I Source: Adam Schefter

4:53 PM: Taylor Price I New Team: Seattle Seahawks I Deal: Unknown I Source: Ian Rapoport

4:23 PM: Vic Carucci reports the Cleveland Browns released QB Jason Campbell, the second QB released by the Browns today

3:51 PM: Jacoby Jones I New Team: Baltimore Ravens I Deal: 4 years, $14 million, $4.5 million guaranteed I Source: Aaron Wilson  Read the rest of this entry » «NFL free agency tracker: Keep track of all the latest and greatest»

"Steve Stevens"

The NFL offseason is ramping up with free agency settling in and the NFL Draft less than two months out. This lull period between now and the start of training camp will be over before we know it and we’ll embark upon that glorious time of the year again – football season. I know many of you are into sports betting because my weekly NFL prediction page is one of the most read columns of the week. With this in mind, I have a must-see show for you.

CNBC will be airing an eight-episode, docu-series called Money Talks unleashes Steve Stevens onto the world. Stevens, the self-proclaimed Michael Jordan, of sports handicapping allows cameras to follow him as he gives viewers an inside view of the high stakes world of sports betting. Stevens business, called VIP Sports in Las Vegas, sells sports betting picks to bettors with a claim that they are right on over 70% of the picks. Read the rest of this entry » «Sponsored Video: CNBC’s ‘Money Talks’ takes viewers inside the sports betting industry»

"Vontae Davis"

With a few exceptions, last season’s free agent market was a bit stagnant. With little increase in the salary cap, teams were hesitant to go all in on the big names. The smart teams waited the market out and picked up some very nice additions, two of which helped the Seahawks take the ultimate prize in Cliff Avril and Michael Bennett.

The 2014 cap will jump from $123 million to $133 million which could lead to an increase in spending. With that said, it always seems like the winners hold off for value later in the signing period and those spending big on day one are left holding the bag on big dollar, and sometimes underperforming players.

The following is our up to the minute look at the top fifty free agents, excluding anyone that received a tag.

1. Jairus Byrd, Buffalo Bills, Safety, 27

Byrd worked under the franchise tag for 2013 and expects to become the highest paid safety in the game in 2014. We don’t think that will be a problem as someone is likely to open their wallet up to the tune of $9 million plus annually. Ball hawking safeties are en vogue in today’s game and Byrd will have no problem finding a lucrative contract.

PREDICTION: Cleveland Browns – Byrd joins former coach Mike Pettine as Jimmy Haslem breaks the bank for his T.J. Ward replacement. Read the rest of this entry » «Ranking the 2014 NFL Free Agent Class with Predictions»

Pre-Combine 2014 NFL Draft Top 75 Rankings

Posted by Brad On February - 22 - 20145 COMMENTS

The draft process is here and I’ve been absent through much of it. I am trying to get back to it as much as time will allow right now. For those of you that I didn’t reach via email, I’ve taken a new job and working on completing my Master’s…never a good combination. That said, I’ve slacked a bit in terms of evaluation of players for the 2014 NFL Draft but I think I have a pretty good idea of who I like and don’t like. While the site won’t be filled with content – as in year’s past – what we post will be a worthwhile read. I thought I’d start this out with a top 75 – I will probably only go a hundred players deep this year (as opposed to the normal top 250).

As we speak many of you are tuning into the first on field workouts of the 2014 Scouting Combine, so we’ll get (literally) an up to the minute thought on how I view these guys.

1. Teddy Bridgewater, QB, Louisville

"Teddy Bridgewater"

Crystal LoGiudice-USA TODAY Sports

Why I think he’s deserving: Teddy may not provide the highest upside of the 2014 QB’s but one could certainly make the argument that he’s the most ready to play of the bunch. If I were Houston, this would be my guy.

Where he fits: I don’t see any bad fits for Teddy. Many will point to his hand size as a deterrent for cold weather teams but it’s a non-issue in my book. You take the best guy on the board and that’s Bridgewater.

Projection: Could go as high as one and the floor for me is at 8 with Minnesota.

2. Jadeveon Clowney, DE, South Carolina

Why I think he’s deserving: You can question his motor, how much he loves the game, and some of his decisions on and off the field – but you can’t question is freakish ability. He’s just too rare of a find to fall far and his scheme diversity will have all 32 teams interested.

Where he fits: Five, seven, or nine technique. Pick one. He’s a guy you take and plug him into your defense regardless of scheme – all 32 teams would love to have the problem of finding a fit for him.

Projection: Could go as high as one and the floor for me is at 6 with Atlanta.

3. Greg Robinson, OT, Auburn

Why I think he’s deserving: This kid is special. I think he’s maybe the highest ceiling prospect in the entire draft. Sure he’s not an experienced pass protector but his skill set suggests with time he could dominate in that area. He’s an NFL-ready run blocker on day one and will test off the charts in Indy.

Where he fits: Could play on the left or right side but long-term he’s a franchise LT in my book.

Projection: Top 10 – could go as high as 2 to St. Louis

4. Khalil Mack, Edge Rusher, Buffalo

Why I think he’s deserving: If all you saw was the Ohio State tape, you’ve seen enough. This kid could play anywhere in the country and dominate so forget about the low level of competition. He’s athletic, physical, has plus instincts, and a phenomenal motor.

Where he fits: Weakside backer in a three-man front or strongside LB in a four-man front.

Projection: Top 10. Read the rest of this entry » «Pre-Combine 2014 NFL Draft Top 75 Rankings»

"Johnny Manziel"

USA TODAY Sports

My absenteeism from the draft process this season has been purposeful and very tough. I haven’t scoured through the Draft Breakdown videos as I normally do. That said, I haven’t been a dormant watcher of the game and think I’ve come up with some solid opinions on many of the players this season.

Five Things I Think, I Think

1. I say my peace on John Football

John Football has been getting a lot of buzz and we can expect that will continue going forward. His latest ranting about the regrets of Houston and winning the Browns a Super Bowl were priceless. Many don’t believe Johnny is capable of backing up these statements – what you will come to find out is that I don’t reside in that camp.

As many of you know, I’m an astute observer of the quarterback position having played and coached the position at different levels. When I watch Manziel, it goes against my grain to fall in love with someone as reckless with the ball as he is. I’ve spent years preaching ball security and the value of not turning the ball over – all for it to come crashing down with my Manziel evaluation.

Look, it’s important to take care of the football but some guys knack for making plays supersede my need to controlling offensive touches. Manziel is that rare guy that I throw caution to the wind on.

The great ones have an “it” factor to them. It’s something that you can’t describe but a feeling that this person was put on this planet to play this game. Johnny Manziel is that guy for me. His throws off balance, into coverage, and running around recklessly are superseded by my belief that he’s going to be a star in the league. Read the rest of this entry » «2014 NFL Mock Draft and Five Things I Think, I Think»

Now that the 2013 season is in the books AND these signal-callers have made their draft decisions, let’s take a look at some metrics (ways of measuring quarterback performance).  Here are most of the quarterbacks who might hear their name called.

qb chart 1 Read the rest of this entry » «Statistically examining Quarterbacks in the 2014 Class (Part 2)»

The Francisco Llanos Q & A

Posted by Mike Krupka On January - 4 - 2014ADD COMMENTS
Francisco

In a two part series, we’ll take a look at Francisco Llanos, a talented receiver who is working hard to ensure he gets enough playing time this year to lock himself into NFL scouts’ radars.

If you haven’t heard of Francisco Llanos you’re probably in the same situation as many fans. Francisco played wide receiver for Southern Mississippi where he walked on as a freshman in 2009. Llanos was red-shirted that first year, but earned and worked his way into an athletic scholarship before the following season in 2010. The unfortunate circumstance for Llanos is that during his time at Southern Mississippi, his production was limited by poor QB play and the fact that he was afforded limited opportunities to make plays on offense. For his career at Southern Mississippi, Llanos finished with 30 receptions, 399 yards receiving, and 2 TD’s and 13.3 yards per catch average, plus he returned his first kickoff 87 yards for a touchdown vs. Tulsa his Freshman season in 2010.

Many college athletes face challenges as they strive to reach their goals, and last October Francisco faced what he called the biggest challenge of his career undergoing a successful ACL surgery. The good news is that he is currently ahead of schedule in his recovery process.

The next obstacle for Francisco will be his unique situation. The fact that he was hurt so early in the season meant that he had used up his last year of D1 eligibility. However, he still had 1 year of NCAA eligibility, but again couldn’t participate in D1. So Francisco is currently deciding where he will finish not just his final season of eligibility, but also where he will earn his master degree. He has narrowed his choices down to two Division II schools, Lindenwood and Nebraska Kearny, and will be making his choice by the end of January.

Although he may slip under the national media’s radar, Francisco, much like Lindenwood’s current gem – Pierre Desir – could very well garner the attention of the NFL scouting community provided he sees more playing time in game situations. Read the rest of this entry » «The Francisco Llanos Q & A»

2014 NFL Draft Order: Top 20 Decided

Posted by Brad On December - 29 - 20131 COMMENT
"Johnny Manziel"

USA TODAY Sports

It’s official – the Houston Texans are officially on the clock. It will be the third time since the Texans joined the league in 2002 that they have owned the first overall pick. The previous two times, the Texans selected a quarterback and defensive end (respectively). That trend isn’t likely to change as Teddy Bridgewater, another quarterback, or South Carolina DE Jadeveon Clowney will be targeted atop the 2014 NFL Draft.

The other story line that is likely to draw some interest is the St. Louis Rams owning Washington No. 2 overall pick – the final pick in the Robert Griffin III trade. St. Louis will have two top fifteen picks to continue to add to the talented and young Ram roster for Jeff Fisher. The Rams may be in an ideal spot to deal this pick as teams look to jump on whoever the Texans pass on with the first pick.

The top three will be rounded out by the Jacksonville Jaguars – who badly need a quarterback. The Jags should be in a position to grab a top two quarterback in this draft. Who that will be will be a large part of speculation leading up to May’s draft.

We will be updated the draft order as teams are bounced from the playoffs. With the top twenty locked in, it’s about time the 2014 NFL Draft starts to get real. After the break, check out the top twenty 2014 NFL Draft order. Read the rest of this entry » «2014 NFL Draft Order: Top 20 Decided»

2014 NFL Draft Underclassmen Tracker

Posted by Brad On December - 29 - 20131 COMMENT
"Loucheiz Purifoy"

Kim Klement – USA TODAY Sports

We have officially reached that bittersweet point of the college football season – the time the season winds down and we begin to learn the names of underclassmen declaring for the NFL Draft.

74 underclassmen declared for the 2013 NFL Draft, a record number. With back-to-back record setting numbers, one can anticipate a whole slew of surprises to come before the deadline. The deadline for early entrants for the 2014 NFL Draft falls on January 15, 2014. 

Not unlike most years, the quality and depth of the 2014 NFL Draft will largely depend on the early entrants. The decisions of a talented junior crop awaits but we could see a record number of third-year sophomores test the NFL waters. The decisions of sophomore prospects Johnny Manziel and Greg Robinson could shape of the top of the draft. 

While we don’t have any idea on the fate of those three, after the break check out who’s hinting towards exiting the collegiate ranks. Read the rest of this entry » «2014 NFL Draft Underclassmen Tracker»

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