2013 NFL Draft Scouting Notes: UNLV v. Minnesota

RB Tim Cornett was the star of the night for us as he ran for 127 yards and 2 TD’s (Photo: US Presswire)

Minnesota came away counting their blessing as the escape Las Vegas with a much needed win. The Rebels kept things tight forcing double OT but this game was more about miscues and missed opportunities than anything else. MarQueis Gray did enough to convince us his QB prospects are legit and RB Tim Cornett was the star of the night.

QB MarQueis Gray 5
6’4, 240 lbs.
-Shows good vision and speed as he takes a designed QB draw for an easy first down
-Rolls right and does not square his shoulders to his throw delivering an off target throw
-Does well to check down and work through progressions
-Just misses a wide open receiver for a would be TD
-Saw blitz and made the right throw but not on target
-Throws the ball into traffic and its deflected and picked off
-Stands tall in the pocket, doesn’t look rushed or anxious
-Not afraid to be a lead blocker for his back
-Rolls right with the pocket and delivers a strike to the WR at the sticks for a first down
-Fakes the draw and then resets his feet to deliver a pass to a crossing WR who was wide open, play is nullified by penalty
-Forces ball to receiver and its broken up, too much confidence in arm strength to try and zip the ball in there
-So hard to bring down when on the move, powerful and quick
-Still struggling with accuracy especially when on the move, doesn’t square his shoulders and it affects his delivery
-Leads receiver to outside off a hitch route, saw CB was sitting inside and by hitting the WR outside he was able to turn it up field and get a big gain
-Plenty of arm strength to hit every throw on the field
-Patient as a runner, and his thighs are like tree trunks so difficult to take down
Summary: Nothing in this game did anything to change my opinion about Gray being a NFL caliber QB. He has the arm strength you crave, he has the size, and he has elite athletic ability that no other prospect at the position offers. Gray’s issue has been accuracy and it remains accuracy though I think it’s improving. He still has some throws where you ask why he is missing open targets but so do other QB’s. He still makes some decisisons where he forces passes and it leads to turnovers. His development as a passer and as somebody who is starting to” get it” is evident. That’s no clearer than when it comes to his touch, like a lot of athletes who play QB with good arms they are looking to try and throw ever ball through their receiver rather than to them. That has changed with Gray and its these kinds of signs that give us hope for his future at QB.

CB Troy Stoudemire 2
5’9, 196 lbs.
-Got shook by Cornett
-Got beaten by slot WR but bailed out by horrendous QB throw that led to a pick by Brock Vereen
-Comes on the blitz nicely and jumps over cut block attempt
-Good job crashing down on rushing attempt, cut down the RB
-Whiffs on a tackle that allows the WR to run a while
-Again crashes down on a running play and gets the stop in the backfield
-Solid in coverage staying with WR throughout route
-Caught peeking into the backfield and lets the WR get by him and open for a reception
Summary: Fits to us as a zone cover corner rather than a pure man guy though he does have the athleticism to stick with many WR’s. He shows good leaping ability despite being undersized. Is fearless coming up to attack running plays and screens, is very hard to block. Could really excel coming off the edge as a blitzer. Would like to see him v. a bigger threat at WR for more evaluation.

DE DL Wilhite 95
6’3, 250 lbs.
-Good power move to rock the OT out of his stance and then get a nice hit on the QB, forced an over throw
-Straight speed rush, runs right by the LT and gets a sack
-Gets off the ball well
-Stays low coming out and beat OT but can’t bend around the corner
-Gets stood up on contact and goes nowhere
-Hasn’t show much in the way of pass rush moves all speed or power
Summary: Just doesn’t have the skill set to be consistently a threat to sack the QB. His moves are very basic and once the OT sees that he can’t beat him with a counter move it is all over. Wilhite has a decent power and speed rush but neither are elite enough to consistently win the battle against the OT. Without more development the upside of Wilhite is quite low.

DT Ra’Shede Hageman* 99
6’6, 300 lbs.
-Pushed 10 yards off the line of scrimmage
-Getting blocked one on one, not showing much power early
-Chases down QB after he breaks the pocket and gets to him for the sack
-Firing off the ball and doing a good job penetrating into the backfield
-Really does well to shoot the gaps and beat the OG/OC
-Really seems to struggle when his first step fails
-Doesn’t play with good leverage at all, OG handling him one on one
-Very little power
-Comes down the line well to get after a rushing play
-Gives plenty of effort in pursuit
-Very athletic for a man his size
Summary: Definitely lots of things to like about Hageman tonight, he’s just one big ball of potential and you want to take that potential and just see him explode and he looks to be right on the edge of doing that. If he develop more strength and become a bigger threat to push the pocket from the middle he could have more success with his first step. In this game UNLV adapted to it and just started waiting on it because they knew he couldn’t over power them.

RB Tim Cornett* 35
6’0, 205 lbs.
-Quick feet and shows off an effective stutter step to shake the CB in the open field
-Good vision to see the running lane and change direction as his blocks develop
-Great speed to get through the hole and into the 2nd level
-Knows how to skinny in the hole
-Minnesota has started loading the box and daring the QB to beat them, this has led to zero room for Cornett
-Staying patient waiting for the hole, doing a good job taking what the defense gives him
-Vision is excellent and has a good feel for his blocks are being set up ahead of him
-Better change of director ability that he is given credit for, does a good job in the open field changing direction to get away from defenders
-Under rated speed in the open field
Summary: There may not have been a player that impressed me more with his ability that Cornett. He’s going to end up over looked due to the team and conference he plays for but those that do that will be making a mistake. As the only playmaker on that offense its miracle Cornett ever gets any yards let alone the 671 yards he put up last year. Cornett’s combination of speed, agility, and vision could make him a sleeper that nobody sees coming.

DT Tyler Gaston* 99
6’3, 290 lbs.
-Seeing a lot of double teams early on, getting moved off the ball
-Quick first step, gets into B gap and is disruptive
-Moved out of the hole that was used for a TD run
-Slow off the ball
-Really ineffective in the game, often just working to a stalemate with his blocker
Summary: A lot of people were hoping that Gaston would take a large step forward in this game and really assert his dominance over the course of the entire season but that didn’t happen here. Gaston was blockable one and one and even when he was disruptive it was only for a play or two rather than over the course of an entire drive.

DE James Boyd Jr* 96
6’5, 255 lbs.
-Strings out the running play and minimizes the gain
-Works back to the QB after getting upfield and brings him down from behind before he can scramble away
-Athleticism and speed are apparent in his rush
-Gets off the ball quickly and shows some explosion coming out of his stance
-Is able to generate pressure off his speed rush
-Was supposed to be have backside contain but got caught over pursuing
-Once the OT gets his hands on him the play is over
-Very raw
-Footwork and hand placement are two big red flags
Summary: The size, athletic ability, and potential for the former QB turned DE are all quite evident. It’s not hard to see why coach Bobby Hauck made the decision to move Boyd to DE. However Boyd is still so raw and lacks the fundamentals that come with trying to play DE. He may pick up a fair amount of sacks this year thanks almost exclusively to his speed rush but he won’t be able to generate pressure in any other way for the time being.

Tags: Gophers, James Boyd, Marqueis Gray, Minnesota, Rebels, Tim Cornett, UNLV

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