Posts Tagged ‘North Dakota State’

Joe Marino’s Senior Offensive Tackle Rankings for the 2014 NFL Draft

Friday, November 15th, 2013

Jake Matthews could follow in the footsteps of the three offensive tackles who were top 5 draft selections in 2013. (Photo: Thomas Campbell — USA Today Sports)

BBD Staff Writer: Joe Marino

The 2013 NFL draft proved that offensive tackle is considered one of the league’s premier positions, as three offensive tackles were selected among the first four selections. The top offensive tackle in this year’s senior class, Texas A&M’s Jake Matthews, may be even better than last year’s offensive tackles.

The team who draft Matthews will likely not have to worry about their left tackle spot for a long time. Overall, the senior class of offensive tackles for the 2014 NFL draft has good depth, with many players who have starter upside.

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Joe Marino’s Senior Cornerback Rankings for the 2014 NFL Draft

Friday, November 8th, 2013

Oklahoma State’s Justin Gilbert has climbed to the top of the senior cornerback rankings. (Photo: Brace Hemmelgarn — USA Today Sports)

BBD Staff Writer: Joe Marino

Cornerback is emerging as one of the most important positions in football. With more and more NFL offenses putting four- and five-receiver sets on the field, it is imperative to have depth at the cornerback position.

I put more emphasis than many people do on cornerbacks’ run-stopping ability considering the need for defensive backs to be able to stop the run when playing against the spread. Physicality was also a trait that I looked for in my evaluations. It is important to be able to disrupt routes and timing of the offense with a good physical presence in press coverage.

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Small-School Sleeper Prospects to Watch in 2014 NFL Draft

Wednesday, August 21st, 2013

Sam Houston State running back Tim Flanders may not be the next Barry Sanders, but he has drawn a comparison to the NFL legend. (Photo: Thomas Campbell — USA Today Sports)

BBD Staff Writer: Joseph Curtis

While Division I Football Bowl Subdivision schools account for most selections and nearly all the top picks in each year’s NFL draft, small schools should not be overlooked.

Non-FBS schools have averaged 24.6 selections during the past five drafts, with nearly 70 percent of those selections coming from from the Football Championship Subdivision (previously known as Division I-AA).

While non-FBS schools have not had a first-round pick since the Arizona Cardinals selected Tennessee State cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie with the No. 16 overall pick in 2008, there has been at least one small-school prospect has been selected in the second round of the draft each year since 2005.

Almost all small-school prospects face the scrutiny of the level of competition that they played against, but every year small school athletes emerge and contribute in the NFL.

In this article, we’ll explore some small school prospects to watch leading up to the 2014 NFL Draft.

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