2013 NFL Draft Scouting Notes: Eastern Washington v. Northern Arizona (2011)

WR Greg Herd was one of two big time WR's to watch for EWU in this game. (Photo: US Presswire)

BIG 10 / BIG 12 / SEC / PAC 12 / ACC / BIG EAST / OTHER FBS / FCS

This Big Sky battle featured two future NFL WR’s in Greg Herd and Nicholas Edwards along with a number of 2014 prospects to watch in Zach Bauman, Jeff Minnerly, and T.J. Lee. The one guy though to watch as a surprise may be DE Jarrett Bilbury who has impressed twice now.

Northern Arizona

QB 5 Cary Grossart
-Feels pressure, steps up in the pocket and rolls right finding his WR wide open for a TD pass
-Over the top throwing motion, delivers an accurate pass
-Gives LB on a spin move on a zone read keeper to pick up positive yards
-Does not display great footwork in the pocket, often shifting his feet and not resetting before delivering the ball
-Very effective in a spread system, consistently puts the ball on target leading the WR so they can continue to run
-Sells play-action fake to Dixon and delivers accurate ball on the roll out to his TE for an easy TD
-Prefers to roll right
-Delivers accurate passes time and time again while on the move
-Needs to puts more air under his fade pass, the throw was too direct and the CB got his hands on it

Overview:
Gossart is a good QB at the collegiate level, he has a nice skill set that mostly revolves around him making throws while on the move. I don’t think he’s a legitimate NFL prospect however I do think he has a future in the CFL or AFL as a top level QB where he mobility, size limitations, and athleticism can be a larger asset.

RB 34 Zach Bauman*
-Great vision on a shovel pass to weave through defenders
-At times seems to dance too much, needs to get north and south faster
-Great vision in the open field, sees seams develop and knows when to hit them
-Quick burst allows him to accelerate out of his cuts and make defenders miss
-Shows good power running through arm tackles
-Good hands off the slip screen to catch the ball and get a big gain
-Spins off a tackler in the middle of the field and accelerates to the outside for a good gain
-Dominant running style, when he has room he is so difficult to bring down
-Takes the pitch on a hook and ladder play, again beats the tackle of LB Matt Johnson and picks up a first down
-Explodes through the LOS and rips off a big run

Overview:
Has the size, speed, and power that you absolutely love as a RB. Every time we see Bauman on tape we continue to be surprised by his ability and how he dominates the competition. We have little doubt left that he is the best RB currently in the FCS and should be a guy to watch for the next two season every week.

DE 94 Jaret Bilbrey
-Gets up field and forces Mitchell to stay in the pocket and throw a dump off pass
-Crashes all the way down the line to make tackle on opposite side from where he lined up
-Injured in the 1st Quarter, Returned the next series
-Stunts into the A gap and gets a sack
-Closed very quickly when he saw he had an open lane to the QB, gave Mitchell no chance to escape

Overview:
Bilbrey is going to be the guy to replace star studded DE Isaac Bond on the Jacks defensive line, he’s got some nice explosion out of stance and can beat the OT on his speed rush. He shows versatility in his pass rush ability with his spin move and the ability to stunt. The thing we like the most though may be the way he closes on the QB when he has them in his sites.

Eastern Washington
WR 3 Greg Herd
-Looks the part of an outside WR, tall, athletic build
-Catches the ball will with his hands
-Does a decent job blocking on the quick screen
-Uses his body to shield the defender from the ball carrier
-Does well to get his hands up and out front on the hitch route, doesn’t allow the ball to get into his body
-On the corner route, the pass is under thrown but Herd lays out to get his hands under the ball and make the reception
-Has the size to make bubble screens effective but doesn’t run with as much power as you’d like to see
-Does not have great acceleration, takes long strides and looks a little stiff in the hips

Overview:
Herd may not be the explosive playmaker that Edwards is but he looks to have more of the little things down. He runs crisp routes and seems to be in the place that his QB expects him to be every time. He’s a bit long legged with his stride and his lack of burst off the snap will be an issue v. press man. He’s a tough cover down the field with his size and leaping ability. He showed us the ability to adjust to miss thrown balls which makes him even harder to cover.

WR 11 Nicholas Edwards
-Does well to get down to catch a poorly thrown pass
-Let ball get into his body on the skinny post
-Took his eyes off the ball and started looking for the hit
-Tracks the ball well over his shoulder
-Uses his size and route on the deep fly the shield the defender away from the ball
-Bobbles ball but does well to regain control and make the snag
-Lining up at the X, Y, and Z position during this game
-Does a nice job catching up to Ashton Clark on a big reception to run with him and help shield defenders who were in chase
-Does well to go under the CB on an underthrown pass but drops the ball

Overview:
Edwards is EWU’s big play guy, he has size, speed, and the ability to make the big catch way down the field. He tracked the ball exceptionally well on the fly route despite having bracket coverage to deal with. He makes the tough catches look easy and the easy ones look tough as he has some drop concerns. Seems to take his eyes off the ball and look up field or for a hit before he makes the catch. He is a versatile weapon that will cause matchup problems for most defenses.

WR 1 Brandon Kaufman
-Out with Injury

Overview:
Missed the remainder of the season with injury and was granted a medical redshirt for 2013.

OT 76 Will Post
-Getting beat by Bilbrey out of his stance
-Heavy footed
-Disengages well to get off block and to the 2nd level
-Has the athleticism to get to the 2nd level and make his block
-Seems to really struggle to get out of his stance, very slow and lumbering

Overview:
Inside option at OG maybe due to his ability to get to the 2nd level and make a block. He’s just too slow out of his stance to stay on the outside even at RT. Not a lot to like about Post right now, will hope to see improvements in 2012.

OLB 10 Zach Johnson
-Out with Injury

Overview:
Missed the remainder of the season with injury and was granted a medical redshirt for 2013.

CB 31 T.J. Lee*
-Injured on first play of defensive game while making a tackle
-Back in the game now and does a good job to fight off the block from the TE to make the tackle on Bauman
-Saves a touchdown with his tackle and strips the ball from Bauman
-Poor tackling technique and he tries to tackle Bauman high and barely is able to slow him down

Overview:
Lee was one of two players in the defensive backfield who actually decided to show up for this EWU defense. Lee gives it everything he’s got on every play and is an active defender in run support. We loved the way he fought through blocks routinely and was never afraid to go low and take out Bauman’s legs unlike some of his teammates.

SAF 7 Jeff Minnerly*
-Does well to come up on the Zone Read play and take Gossart down for a small gain
-Touchdown saving tackling Bauman after he made two people miss already
-Sound tackling technique as he takes down Bauman again after teammates fail to bring him down
-Goes low on Bauman while teammates seem dead set on going high
-Got too aggressive coming forward and got shook by Bauman

Overview:
If there was a stat for TD saving tackles Minnerly may have very well led the country in it after this game. Minnerly was aggressive when coming down into the box to stop Bauman, and because of the style of offense NAU plays there wasn’t a ton of him to see in coverage. Overall, Minnerly had a good initial impression with bigger things to come.

 Check out all the 2013 NFL Draft Scouting Notes in our database!

Tags: Eastern Washington, FCS, Greg Herd, Nicholas Edwards, Northern Arizona, Zach Bauman

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