Sun, May 05, 2013
By Phil Savage
Nineteen Senior Bowl players were chosen in the 4th round, meaning that 59 of the first 133 prospects picked, or 42%, participated in Mobile.
|99.||KANSAS CITY||Nico Johnson||LB||Alabama|
With the Chiefs trying to refine their 3-4 defense under new coordinator Bob Sutton, Nico brings great experience and top-shelf intangibles to the table. An under-the-radar leader during the Crimson Tide’s run to three BCS titles in four years, he is a classic Mike linebacker with the size and know-how to take on blocks at the point-of-attack. More zone than man-to-man pass defender, he has awareness and understands reading and “matching” to pass patterns. Expect to see Nico find a role on early downs and become a core special teams’ contributor as a rookie in 2013.
SENIOR BOWL BUMP
Mostly utilized as an H-Back for the Crimson, he and Tommy Bohanon/Wake Forest were the two “fullbacks” invited to the Senior Bowl. All Kyle did in Mobile was catch every ball thrown to him and locate and contact every blocking assignment he had in the run game. In addition, he was active in coverage and as a blocker on special teams during the Saturday game. Ultimately, he was not added to the Combine list and could only rely on his work in Mobile and his on-campus pro day to convince NFL people that he can play professional football. He won the Ravens over in the 4th round and GM Ozzie Newsome might be thinking that two running backs, two tight ends and two fullbacks may be the way to go roster-wise in 2013.
|125.||GREEN BAY||Jonathan Franklin||RB||UCLA|
Although the Packers chose RB Eddie Lacy/Alabama in the 2nd round, they still felt compelled to follow him up with the Bruins’ all-time leading rusher in the 4th. After enjoying a spectacular senior year with 1,734 yards and 13 touchdowns, he showed up in Mobile and proved to be a back that is capable of running, blocking and catching. Johnathan was outstanding in the 1-on-1 pass pro drills, caught the football well from the backfield and then contributed in a big way on special teams during the game. He and Lacy will compliment each other extremely well as a potential one-two punch for Green Bay’s run game with the added benefit that Johnathan is willing and can play on 4th down. He is simply a “glue guy” that will help the Pack win games.
|128.||SAN FRANCISCO||Quinton Patton||WR||Louisiana Tech|
The “rich got richer” when the 49ers added this talented playmaker to their WR mix in the 4th round. Quinton caught 104 passes for the Bulldogs as a senior, then won the “Practice Award for WR’s” at the Senior Bowl for his efforts during the week. He has very good athleticism, body control and balance with the ability to run after the catch. Physical enough to find a place on special teams as a rookie, it may take him a year to earn offensive play-time, but his day will come soon enough.
Quarterbacks always get the attention in the NFL Draft, especially when three of them go within five picks of each other. It would not have been totally surprising if this order had occurred in the 2nd or 3rd rounds, but everyone in the league will be anxious to see which one (or two or three) emerges as a starter in the next three seasons.
|110.||NY GIANTS||Ryan Nassib||QB||Syracuse|
After some mock drafts had him going as high as the 8th pick in the 1st round, Ryan had to wait through Thursday and Friday nights before finally hearing his name called on Saturday. He has a strong arm, a sturdy lower body and enjoyed success in a West Coast system. Now, he will get the chance to expand his game under the direction of Tom Coughlin and Eli Manning.
The Raiders coached the North team in Mobile, but they saw all the tapes of Tyler’s shortened throwing motion and solid showing in the South practices during the week. He actually won the “Practice Award for QB’s” and has a pedigree of production and toughness that should serve him well as he tries to earn the backup spot to newly acquired starter Matt Flynn.
This four-year starter who became the only QB in NCAA history to throw for 3100 yards and more than 25 touchdowns in each season will get the opportunity to watch and learn the pro game behind Ben Roethlisberger. If called upon, Landry can dial up his extensive game experience, but his real improvement can come in the form of making more ad-lib plays aka Big Ben.
REMAINING FOURTH ROUNDERS:
Momentum pass rusher who is a bit under-sized for 3-4 DE, but may find a role in Sub/passing situations.
|Explosive safety with combo skills to hit and cover, should contribute on special teams right away.|
Understands hand use, leverage and knee bend, he will provide OC/OG versatility before becoming a starter in the future.
|114.||B.W. Webb||William & Mary||DC||COWBOYS|
|Really athletic small-school corner who proved his worth at the Senior Bowl. Has feet, does not let people behind him and can return both punts and kicks.|
|Extremely productive tackler for the Scarlet Knights, he is a true Will that should slide into that same starting spot by 2014.|
|118.||Sean Porter||Texas A&M||LB||
Combination “box” and “on-the-line” linebacker who has played in 3-4 and 4-3 over past two seasons for the Aggies. Has the skills to start in future, but does need to add at least 10lbs to his frame.
|Pittsburgh trades with Cleveland for first time since 1968. World doesn’t come to an end, but Shamarko ends up as potential replacement for Troy Polamalu.|
|This Ivy Leaguer has feet, body balance and only needs to get stronger to one day start as a center or guard for Green Bay.|
|123.||Chris Harper||Kansas State||WR||SEAHAWKS|
|Physically tough wide receiver who reminds some, in style, of Anquan Boldin when he came out of Florida State.|
Excellent try for Houston as a converted DE to 3-4 outside linebacker. He has initial burst off the edge and the potential to play from a two-point stance.
With his 36” arms and 11” hands, Malliciah has room to reach 285lbs and play as a “big” DE for the Falcons.
|129.||John Simon||Ohio State||LB||RAVENS|
Somewhat similar to former-Baltimore/now-San Diego outside linebacker Jarrett Johnson, he has the same kind of temperament and possible versatility in the Ravens’ hybrid scheme.
|Phil Savage is the Executive Director of the Senior Bowl. He worked 20 years in the NFL as a coach, scout and executive, including two years as the Director of Player Personnel for the Baltimore Ravens and four years as the general manager of the Cleveland Browns.|