Tag Archives: New York Giants

2020 NFL Draft recap: NFC East

Dallas Cowboys Notable picks: With the deflection of former starter Byron Jones, the team went with a player who contains similar length in Diggs. He is certainly more of a ballhawk, but can he provide the consistency in coverage that Jones gave them over a two-year period. It will be worth monitoring the development of Robinson II. His profile may actually be closer to Jones’ than Diggs.
Round, Selection,
Player School DN Big Board Rank/ Grade ‘Nasty’ Take:
1 (17) CeeDee Lamb6’2 198
WR-Oklahoma
11/1st Round Lamb has all of the requisite tools to win with both savvy and quickness as a route runner. He has a solid set of tools to be a complement within the Dallas passing game initially. We expect him to see some time in the slot.
2 (51) Trevon Diggs6’1 205
CB-Alabama
84/2nd Round Diggs brings more than NFL bloodlines to the table. He is aggressive getting his hands on WRs at the line of scrimmage. Finding a balance in that aggression and bringing it to run support will ramp up his development.
3 (82) Neville Gallimore6’2 304 DT-Oklahoma143/3rd Round Gallimore had some issues with balance in school and that is probably why he lasted until this spot in the draft. For a player with his level of quickness and power, it was a bit surprising that he didn’t make more plays in school.
4 (123) Reggie Robinson II6’1 205 CB-Tulsa93/3rd Round Robinson II didn’t get the ink of some of the other big CBs in this year’s draft and maybe that should not come as a surprise. He has always been competitive in coverage and finished better in 2019.
4 (146) Tyler Biadasz6’4 314 OC-Wisconsin59/2nd RoundBiadasz was not a dominator in school but he was assignment-sound. The former prep level baseball player led an offensive line that was ravaged by graduation from 2018 and did so admirably.
5 (179)Bradlee Anae6’3 257
DE-Utah
100/3rd Round Due to sub-standard edge rusher workout times Anae fell in the draft. This came after a dominant Senior Bowl showing that showcased his feel for getting off the ball.
7 (220)Ben DiNucci6’2 210
QB-James Madison, Pittsburgh
555/7th RoundDiNucci’s moxie may have influenced this selection. The former Pitt Panther quietly was a couple of inches away from leading the Dukes to a national championship in 2019.
Utah’s Bradlee Anae (No. 6 pictured) forces a fumble versus Northwestern running back Isaiah Bowser (No. 25 picutred) in the fourth quarter. He finished 2018 with 51 tackles, eight quarterback sacks, 15.5 tackles for losses, two forced fumbles and three pass break-ups. The Cowboys selected Anae in the fifth round of the 2020 NFL Draft (179th overall).
New York Giants Notable pick: The team would be satisfied if Holmes can come in and lock down a nickel role within their scheme. The team has quietly assembled enough size on the edges, so it will be imperative for him to learn the various roles of an inside position while also contributing on special teams.
Round, Selection,
Player School DN Big Board Rank/ Grade ‘Nasty’ Take:
1 (4) Andrew Thomas6’5 317
OT-Georgia
6/1st RoundThomas has the occasional top-heavy look but he remains relatively consistent establishing a lockout on the perimeter. He won’t be able to get by with relatively in the NFL and his overall
2 (40) Xavier McKinney6’0 201
S-Alabama
41/2nd Round McKinney will be able to play a variety of roles for the Giants just like he did with the Crimson Tide. His best characteristic comes from his pre-snap cognitive ability in diagnosing the opposition’s intentions.
3 (71) Matt Peart6’5 312
OT-UConn
72/2nd Round Peart is by no means a finished product, but that doesn’t mean starting is out of the question. He is most comfortable at RT, but he has started on both sides of the OL in school.
4 (110) Darnay Holmes5’10 195
CB-UCLA
112/3rd Round Holmes lack of width (69-inch wingspan) hurt his cause and forced him to fall. Penalties were a bit of an issue in 2019 but he found a way to compete week-to-week.
5 (150) Shane Lemieux6’4 310
OG-Oregon
299/4th Round You will not find many arguments surrounding Lemieux’s work ethic and determination. He was a consistent presence at OG for the Ducks over a four-year period. He finished his career with 52 consecutive starts.
6 (183) Cam Brown6’5 233
LB-Penn State
210/4th Round Brown has been used to run up the seams with TEs, cover down over the slot and off the edge as an occasional rush artist. He seemed to be most comfortable in school filtering back inside from an overhang LB spot.
New York Giants first-round pick Andrew Thomas (No. 71 pictured) started at both right and left tackle for the ‘Dawgs during his three-year stay in Athens.
7 (218)
Carter Coughlin
6’3 236
LB-Minnesota
286/4th Round
Coughlin finished his career with 22 QB sacks and 40 TFLs. When you combine that with his 4.57 speed, then the team may have gotten a core special teams contributor. He starred on the kickoff team way back in 2016 (see Holiday Bowl).
7 (238)
Tremari “T.J.” Brunson
6’1 230
LB-South Carolina
392/5th Round
Brunson may not completely fit the bill in terms of size, but he does play bigger than his measurements. He had some lower body extremity issues in school, but he appeared in 49 games (283 tackles, 21 TFLs).

7 (247)

Chris Williamson
6’0 205
NB/S-Minnesota, Florida
421/5th Round
Williamson was often tasked with covering fast slot WRs one-on-one and held his own. Hand placement is an issue but his work as a blitzer shows promise. The former Florida Gator should compete favorably in training camp.
7 (255)
Tae Crowder
6’3 235 (E)
LB-Georgia
463/6th Round
Crowder showed time-and-time again that he is capable of chasing plays down laterally. He leaves some tackle opportunities on the field because he does not always get his head across the bow of the opponent.
Philadelphia Eagles Notable pick:  Reagor has a role to fill in the team’s offense as the Wild Card type of player. If he can execute a variety of different responsibilities, then the Eagles will be able to use his elusive skill set to maximize one-on-one matchups on a down-to-down basis.
Round, Selection,
Player School DN Big Board Rank/ Grade ‘Nasty’ Take:
1 (21) Jalen Reagor5’11 205
All-purpose-TCU
49/2nd Round Reagor simply needs to find his way as a route runner to take advantage of his outstanding physical tools. He runs well after the catch, tracks the ball down the field and makes defenders miss in space.
2 (53)Jalen Hurts6’1 222
QB-Oklahoma, Alabama 
127/3rd Round Hurts earned kudos at both collegiate stops for his leadership, poise and overall strength. It would not be a shock to see him involved in a number of packages as a rookie.
3 (103)Davion Taylor6’0 224
LB-Colorado
225/4th Round The Pac-12 100-meter sprinter runs in the 4.4s, closes ground on routes in front of him and actually finds a way to be active week-to-week. He simply needs more repetitions. We think he has special teams core (all four teams) potential at the next level. The team will likely incorporate him into some of its nickel/dime packages.
4 (127)K’Von Wallace5’11 206 DB-Clemson82/2nd RoundWallace didn’t always finish interception opportunities in school, but he did often put himself into good position in one-on-one situations. His ability to time his entries in the run game was subsidized by consistent one-on-one coverage in the slot.
4 (145)Jack Driscoll6’5 307
OT-Auburn, UMass
221/4th RoundDriscoll continued to get better during school and his footwork was an area of focus. Now he needs to concentrate on gaining more core strength to handle speed-to-power in the NFL. This will be the case at either OG or OT, where he hopes to win a seventh or eighth role in 2020.
5 (168)John Hightower6’1 185
All-purpose-
Boise State
259/4th Round Hightower continued to improve every year in school but finally put it all together in 2019. For a team that went into the draft wanting to add speed at WR, Hightower has some capabilities.
6 (196)Shaun Bradley6’1 235
LB-Temple
196/4th Round Bradley has some footwork issues to clean up at the exchange LB spot. However, he will add plenty of speed to a defense and special teams unit that values quality backups.
6 (200)Quez Watkins6’0 185
WR-Southern Miss
124/3rd RoundSpeed is the name of the game in the pass-happy NFL, and Watkins brings plenty of it to the table. He seemed to build to an even different top gear with the ball in his hands on quick RPO slants and posts. Now he needs to work on getting off of press coverage.
Philadelphia Eagles sixth-round pick Quez Watkins concluded his impressive three-year run at Southern Miss by averaged 18.2 yards per reception as a junior (1,145 yards, 6 TDs).
6 (210)
Prince Tega Wanogho
6’5 308
OT-Auburn
141/3rd Round
Tega Wanogho did not have a chance to show off his impressive tools in the postseason. At this point in the process, the team could afford to take a flyer on a player who may not reach his peak for another three-year period.
7 (233)
Casey Toohill
6’4 250
OLB-Stanford
260/4th Round
Toohill is a fast, athletic long LB with enough speed to play multiple spots. Coverage is a question mark, as is his ability to transfer speed-to-power as a pass rusher.
Washington Redskins Notable pick: Although the Redskins have a number of different types of receivers on its roster, there is no one other than Cam Sims that contains Gandy-Golden’s size. If he can transition effectively to the NFL, it could open up the team’s Red Zone offense.
Round, Selection,
Player School DN Big Board Rank/ Grade ‘Nasty’ Take:
1 (2) Chase Young6’5 264
DE-Ohio State
2/1st Round The Redskins are hoping that Young turns into not only a transformational player but that he can also open up possibilities for the talented Montez Sweat and Ryan Kerrigan on the other side. He may see time at DT on third downs.
3 (66)Antonio Gibson6’0 223
All-Purpose-Memphis
25/2nd Round There simply aren’t players with the size/speed quotient that Gibson brings to the table at 228 pounds. It would not be a shock to see the team use im in the backfield as a dot RB, slot WR or even outside receiver. The all-purpose dynamo produced without a lot of touches in school.
4 (108)Saahdiq Charles6’4 303
OT-LSU
189/4th RoundCharles bends, latches and slides effectively. What he hasn’t been able to do is stay on the field. Whether it was a suspension, injury or otherwise, the former Tiger was not dependable week-to-week. Perhaps the NFL opportunity will change his tunes.
4 (142)  Antonio Gandy-Golden6’4 223
WR-Liberty
95/3rd RoundGandy-Golden didn’t necessarily perform as well during the testing portion of the postseason as he did on the field. It will not come as a shock if he develops into the team’s primary Red Zone threat early in his career.
5 (156)Keith Ismael 6’3 309
OC-San Diego State
113/3rd RoundIsmael -a junior-entry- probably would have not gone much higher in next year’s draft and that may have influenced his decision to come out early. His quickness (and experience at three positions) will add another layer to the Redskins running game.
5 (162)Khaleke Hudson5’11 224
S/LB-Michigan
263/4th Round Hudson may have gotten dinged because he doesn’t really have a true position at the next level. At least, not yet. We think he can be a sub-package LB with enough zone capability to cover the flats and beyond.
Washington Redskins fifth-round draft pick Khaleke Hudson blocked five kicks during his career at Michigan.
7 (216)
Kamren Curl
6’1 206
S-Arkansas

150/3rd Round
Curl – a former cornerback- plays faster on the field than he times in T-shirts and shorts. He reacts to what he sees on the football field and plays with anticipation.
7 (226)
James Smith-Williams
6’3 265
DE-NC State
310/5th Round
Smith-Williams was probably as accomplished off the field as he was on it. A subpar senior year caused the workout warrior to slip in the draft, but injuries were probably more of the cause. However, Ron Rivera has had success with these types of DL (see Mario Addison) in the past.

Q&A with former Miami (Fla.) LB Shaq Quarterman: “From start to finish”

Former Miami (Fla.) linebacker Shaquille Quarterman -a four-time All-ACC selection at linebacker- finished his storied career with 356 tackles, ninth all-time in school history. In 2019, Quarterman became the only Hurricane to start 52 consecutive games without missing a start. DraftNasty editor-in-chief Corey Chavous caught up with Quarterman during the week of the 2020 East-West Shrine Bowl. They talked about why finishing was an important part of his legacy. Quaterman modeled his game after his idol, a former Hurricanes linebacker and NFL first round pick who currently serves as his mentor.

Corey: First, I’d like to ask how do you think the week has gone for you so far?
Quarterman: I think the week has progressed for me very well. First day of pads, I already knew it was knocking off the dust. Not for just me, but everybody out here. As it gets better, people get more comfortable, you get to see who really can play. So today I felt like it was night and day from my first day. I just feel like as the week keeps going I’m going to get even better.

Corey: We actually shot your last bowl game (2019 Independence Bowl). A lot of your teammates made the decision not to play in that game. For you, as a team captain, one of the things that you talked about was just how important that last game was to you. Ended that game with 11 tackles. Even though it was a little bit of a debilitating loss, your defense played well. Talk about how you felt about finishing the right way.
Quarterman: I’m a man of principle. I really stick to my principles and morals. I could not have my team out there and feel like they’re better off without me because I wanted to go train just a couple of days early. That’s not the way I want to set a standard. That’s all I’ve ever talked about was the standard. It’s not bailing on your team, because I love my guys and they made their decisions for why they made their decisions. But I’m a team guy, that’s all it is. I couldn’t be on the sidelines and then I was thinking about going but that makes it worse. I’m going to play with my team.

Corey: Right.
Quarterman: 55 is going to lead his team out there. I never folded. I never did that.

Quarterman (No. 55 pictured) finished his career with 356 tackles, 12 quarterback sacks, 46.5 tackles for loss, an interception and 13 passes defensed.

Corey: Our notes on you surround the ability to stack-and-shed. That is one of the things that is a little bit underrated in your game. Talk about why that is important to you…using your hands as a linebacker.
Quarterman: Because that’s how you’ve got to survive in the league (NFL). In college, you can still get away with being more athletic than a lot of guys. But at the next level, that margin of error is cut drastically shorter. You have to be able to do a lot of things to survive. It’s about longevity. The standard career time is already like 2.3 years, so if I can’t use my hands as a linebacker I don’t see how I’m going to see the field. And that’s just being honest. Because it’s a business, it’s about producing. I undertand that. That was one of my critiques last year, so this year I knew I had to work on that. I knew I had to put it on tape multiple times. Like you said, I put it on tape, but it’s very underrated. So I’ve got to change something about me to make it not underrated.

Corey: Now if there’s a question the scouts are asking you when you talk to them. What’s the biggest question they have for you the rest of the postseason? Certainly you’re coming down here this week dispelling any questions they may have. What do you hear the most?
Quarterman: It’s always about my ability to play in space. I’ve been in the box so long at Miami, so good at playing the run, that my coaches didn’t have to worry about that. So if you don’t have to worry about one spot, you can find pieces around him that could play the pass.

Corey: Absolutely.
Quarterman: So I was never groomed for my pass coverage basically. That’s why those question marks exist.

Corey: And they had you coming forward a lot.
Quarterman: Right.

Corey: The tackles for loss weren’t just this year, they were a year ago as well.
Quarterman: Exactly.

Corey: Run blitzes, timing run blitzes.
Quarterman: They just let me do what I do best. And I understand that. But now I’m in a position where I’ve got to show people that I can do the other side of the spectrum.

Corey: And how have you felt that has gone out here (East-West Shrine week)?
Quarterman: The first day was rusty. Today, a whole 180. I didn’t win a single one-on-one yesterday, and I didn’t lose one today.

Corey: That’s awesome man.
Quarterman: Yes sir.

Corey: The tradition at your school is pretty deep at the linebacker position. But if there is a player, even beyond Miami (Fla.), that you’ve looked up to from the NFL perspective -either presently or in the past- who would that be? .
Quarterman: Jon Beason (10-year NFL veteran, former Miami (Fla.) linebacker-2007 NFL Draft, 1st Round, 25th overall, Carolina Panthers). That’s my mentor, man.

Corey: Wow. Really good player.
Quarterman: That’s my mentor. I want to play like him. I still watch his tapes. He let me get a hold of his tapes, so I still watch him. We’re almost built the same. I’m a little taller than him, but as soon as I stepped on campus they talked about our neck sizes and stuff like that. I just love the way he plays the game. I try to do everything that he would do and beyond. Because he did everything the right way. He played through injuries and all that. To have a chance to go to Miami (Fla.) and meet your idol and have him mentor you. And take you underneath his wing and see that he sees it in you. It’s something different. It’s a lot of weight on that.

Quarterman (No. 55 pictured) played the entire 2017 season with a torn left AC joint and finished that year with 83 tackles, 2.5 QB sacks, 7 TFLs and 5 PBUs.

Corey: Four-year starter at Miami from your true freshman year on. The meaning of that?
Quarterman: It’s different. It’s hard. Very difficult. I just really thank Coach Richt and Coach Diaz for trusting in me. It takes a lot to put a true freshman out there…at any position in college football. I really appreciate that. I tried to uphold it as long as I could.

Corey: Well, man, good luck and continue the tradition. I know you gotta get outta here. Nice to meet you. Enjoyed watching you throughout your career.
Quarterman: I appreciate that.

2019 NFL Draft recap, pick-by-pick: NFC East

The New York Giants had the sixth overall pick of the 2019 NFL Draft and selected former Duke quarterback Daniel Jones.  Their selection set off a series of events in what shapes up to be a very competitive division in 2019.  We take a look at every pick in the division made this past weekend.

NFC EAST

Hill (No. 9 pictured), the Dallas Cowboys second-round selection, actually starred as a 320-pound freshman defensive end under former defensive coordinator Erik Chinander.

Dallas Cowboys Notable picks: Hill may be the pick that the team looks back on eventually with a smile.  His immense athleticism could provide matchup problems from the inside in Year 1.  Pollard’s play speed varies, but his downhill running style gives the team options in the return game.
Round,

Selection,

Player School DN Big Board

Rank/

Grade

‘Nasty’ Take:
2 (58) Trysten Hill UCF 74/2nd Round We talked to one anonymous offensive coordinator who stated that “Hill was the best defensive lineman they had seen.”  This same coordinator had also faced other top-notch Power 5 defenses.  It lays credence to the amount of talent that the 300-plus pound Hill possesses.
3 (90) Connor McGovern OG/Penn State 98/3rd Round The Cowboys had a revolving door at the left guard spot in 2018 and McGovern- a former U.S. Army All-American-got on the field early for the Nittany Lions, starting nine games as a freshman.  He is a bully on the football field who works better at guard than center.
4 (128) Tony Pollard All-Purpose/Memphis 161/3rd Round The NCAA’s all-time leading kickoff returner in terms of TD returns was also an effective dot running back and slot receiver.  He could be a steal in the fourth round.  Career Stats: 4,860 all-purpose yards-139 carries for 941 yards (6.8 YPC) and 9 TDs; 104 receptions for 1,292 yards (12.4 YPR) and 9 TDs; 87 KOR, 2,616 yards (30.1 yds/KR) and an NCAA-record 7 KR TDs
5 (158) Michael Jackson CB/Miami (Fla.) 149/3rd Round Jackson had a solid two-year run for the Hurricanes subsidized by an above average showing during 2019 East-West Shrine practices.  He is a very good challenger versus wide receivers, particularly bigger receiving targets. He is a cornerback that does better versus outside releases than inside releases in press-man.
5 (165) Joe Jackson DE/

Miami (Fla.)

180/3rd Round Jackson can be a bit unorthodox in his style, making it tough for offensive tackles to gauge his techniques.  Despite some stiffness, he posted 138 tackles, 24 QB sacks, 37.5 TFLs, 5 FFs, 2 FRs, INT and 5 PBUs in 39 games.
6 (213) Donovan Wilson S/Texas A&M 168/3rd Round Wilson came to Texas A&M with a reputation for turning the ball over and didn’t disappoint in school.  A long defender, his versatility extended to the nickel, cornerback and safety spots in school.
7 (218)

Acquired from Oakland

Mike Weber RB/Ohio State 347/5th Round The former U.S. Army All-American got off to a hot start in Columbus, but that has since cooled down after a rash of nagging lower extremity injuries lingered over a two-year period.
7 (241)

 

Jalen Jelks DE/Oregon 174/3rd Round Jelks, a former high school interior DL, can move around the defensive front with ease.  He is more athletic than his testing numbers suggest. 

New York Giants first-round draft pick Daniel Jones’ 85-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver T.J. Rahming in the 2018 Independence Bowl was one of five touchdown passes in a career-best performance.

 

New York Giants Notable picks: Although the Giants made several good selections, this entire draft will ultimately come down to how the team transitions from Eli Manning to Daniel Jones.  GM Dave Gettleman and his scouting department deserve credit for getting early-round value with Love, the Slaytons and Ballentine. For the second straight year, Gettleman decided to draft a player from Georgia’s defense (2018-Lorenzo Carter, third round).
Round,

Selection

Player School DN Big Board

Rank/

Grade

‘Nasty’ Take:
1 (6) Daniel Jones Duke 73/2nd Round The Giants believe that Jones can be an Eli Manning-clone, but perhaps with better athleticism.  Jones started 36 games in his career and finished it with six touchdowns in an MVP performance in the 2018 Independence Bowl.
1 (17)

Acquired from the Cleveland Browns in the Odell Beckham, Jr. and Olivier Vernon trade

Dexter Lawrence Clemson 9/1st Round After taking its heir apparent to Eli Manning early, the Giants decide to bet on the third Clemson DL to go off on the board.  Can Lawrence return to his 2016 ACC Rookie of the Year form?  It may not matter.  He will line up over the center in the team’s three-man fronts and occasionally line up over offensive guards in their four-man looks.
1 (30)

Acquired from the Seattle Seahawks

Deandre Baker Georgia 36/2nd Round Baker’s toughness will be a good fit for the Giants.  He has a chance to vie for a starting role in Year 1.  The big key for him will be finding a balance in transition during the move area for wide receivers (12-to-16 yards). 
3 (95) Oshane Ximines DE/Old Dominion 148/3rd Round Ximines (Troy Jefferson’s Player to Watch in our 2018 Old Dominion preview)  has plenty of the characteristics needed to produce as a 30-front outside linebacker.  While only an adequate bender, he uses a quick-footed nature to escape offensive tackles.   He seemed most comfortable rushing from the right side in the film viewed.
4 (108) Julian Love CB/Notre Dame 68/2nd Round Love’s gambling style resulted in a number of pick-six opportunities in 2017, and he finished on most of them.  The consensus All-American has outstanding instincts and quickness. 
5 (143) Ryan Connelly LB/Wisconsin 237/4th Round Connelly’s toughness shined through the entire 2018 season.  Despite playing through injury, he produced at nearly the exact level as he had in 2017. He is not a thumper but is capable of getting low to tackle.  Connelly ends up getting the draft call over partner and All-Big Ten linebacker T.J. Edwards.
5 (171) Darius Slayton WR/Auburn 127/3rd Round Speed is a big part of the equation whenever a receiver averages 20 yards per catch over a three-year period.  Slayton has no problems running by defensive backs.  He caught three passes for 163 yards and three touchdowns in the 2018 Music City Bowl. His body language gives away intermediate route concepts because he doesn’t come off the ball with consistent forward lean.
6 (180) Corey Ballentine CB/Washburn 50/2nd Round He has excellent feet, hip flexibility, toughness and return skills.  Working on staying lower in his backpedal will put yet another tool in his toolbox, but he already can close distances from a variety of angles.
7 (232)

Acquired from Minnesota

George Asafo-Adjei OL/Kentucky 583/6th Round Plus size.  Praised for his versatility within the program.  Heavy puncher. Although he started primarily at the right tackle spot, he can backup several positions.  His impressive Pro Day performance likely earned him a draft slot. 
7 (245)

Acquired from Los Angeles

Chris Slayton DL-Syracuse 123/3rd Round It could be argued that the 700-pound squatter has as much lower body strength as the team’s 17th overall pick in Lawrence. He is not an accomplished pass rusher but he finished his career with 32.5 tackles for losses. Despite the Orange winning 10 games in 2018, Slayton was the team’s only draft pick.

 

Ohio State quarterback Dwayne Haskins passed for 4,831 yards (70%), 50 touchdowns and eight interceptions in 2018.

Washington Redskins Notable picks: Haskins may carry a bit of a chip on his shoulder due to his slight fall simply because the Giants play in the same division.  It will be fun to track future Jones versus Haskins matchups.  He will pair up with his Buckeye teammate McLaurin in the third round, and we felt that he carried second-round value.  Harmon could become grand larceny in the sixth round, as could either Moreland or Brailford in the seventh.  Bruce Allen and Doug Williams put together a well-constructed draft designed to grab another pass rusher, a future quarterback and more competition at receiver.  Linebacker is still a question mark for the team entering 2019, especially after the release of Zach Brown.  There will be a lot of pressure on Reuben Foster to finally come into his own.
Round,

Selection,

Player School DN Big Board

Rank/

Grade

‘Nasty’ Take:
1 (15) Dwayne Haskins Ohio State 27/2nd Round Haskins passed for 50 touchdowns in his only year as a starter at the collegiate level.  He provides insurance in case Alex Smith is unable to return from a catastrophic leg injury in 2018.  The All-Big Ten signal-caller will compete with former Broncos QB Case Keenum.
1 (26)

Acquired from Indianapolis

Montez Sweat Mississippi State 8/1st Round The Redskins needed to upgrade their pass rush and Sweat was likely the best player left on its board. Aside from dynamic testing numbers, the former Michigan State Spartan stood out over the last two years on the field for the Bulldogs with underrated effort.
3 (76) Terry McLaurin WR/Ohio State 30/2nd Round McLaurin caught 11 TD passes from Dwayne Haskins in 2018.   After a strong Senior Bowl week of practices which clearly defined him as the week’s best route runner, it leaves one to wonder what his production would have been like as its No. 1 featured receiver.  Aside from the ability to win off the line of scrimmage, he is one of the better gunners in this year’s draft.  He finished his career with 17 tackles.
4 (112) Bryce Love RB/Stanford 110/3rd Round Love went nearly exactly at his position on our Big Board, but he may have gone much higher if he had not suffered an ACL injury late in the year. Ankle issues were also a concern during his career. The fact that he carried the ball 97 less times as a senior may have saved him wear-and-tear in the minds of some entering this year’s draft.
4 (131) Wes Martin OG/Indiana N/A The Hoosiers team captain may have surprised some by going ahead of teammate Brandon Knight.  His ability to create forward movement in the run game may be underrated.  Martin did 38 reps at 225 pounds on his Pro Day.
5 (153) Ross Pierschbacher OC/Alabama 314/4th Round It is not often that a high profile offensive lineman from the state of Iowa gets out of the state.  Pierschbacher more than justified his national ranking as a prep level lineman.  He has solid initial quickness, positive on-field movement and decent overall awareness.  He will need some help if left on an island versus elite interior pass rushers.
5 (173) Cole Holcomb LB/UNC 272/4th Round Despite being a good overall athlete, the second-team All-ACC linebacker did not have one scholarship offer coming out of high school.  The former soccer player has good feet on the field.  He is a bit of a pumped up 230-plus pounds.  A workout warrior, he caught the attention of NFL scouts with his 4.46 speed, 6.77 3-cone and 4.15 20-yard short shuttle times in pre-draft workouts.  He also went 11-feet in the broad jump.
6 (206) Kelvin Harmon WR/NC State 108/3rd Round Harmon says he likes Michael Thomas (Saints) because their frames are similar. We think he plays the game at the right clip.  His play strength and 218-pound frame make it  tough for defensive backs to work through and around.  He is a grinder who could stick.
7 (227) Jimmy Moreland CB-Nickel/James Madison 164/3rd Round There is really not much more Moreland could have done while at James Madison.  He covered instinctively, was willing in run support and finished plays on the ball as well as any cornerback in the 2019 NFL Draft class. He finished his career with 18 interceptions (363 yards, 6 TDs), but he was knocked for his 73 1/4-inch wingspan.
7 (253) Jordan Brailford DE-OLB/Oklahoma State 171/3rd Round Brailford did exactly what he was supposed to do during the 2019 postseason.  At every turn he not only met expectations, but often exceeded them.  This was even evident when he showed up over 250 pounds at the 2019 NFL Combine.  On the field, he put up 28 tackles for losses the last two years with efficient work using roll moves, slithering gaps on line games and an occasional inside club.

 

 

Miller (No. 48 pictured), Penn State’s Co-MVP in 2018, posted 12.5 quarterbacks and 26 tackles for loss over the last two seasons.

 

Philadelphia Eagles Notable pick:  For a team that prides itself on pass rushers, the team’s fourth-round pick in Miller has a chance to be more than what many may bargain for.  While his statistics don’t represent it, he was always at his best versus the best competition. For the second straight year, the Eagles take a defensive end with upside in the fourth round (2018-Josh Sweat).
Round,

Selection,

Player School DN Big Board

Rank/

Grade

‘Nasty’ Take:
1 (22)

Acquired from the Baltimore Ravens  in exchange for its 25th overall pick

Andre Dillard OT/Washington State 13/1st Round Dillard has the ability to pass protect at a high level and he will be tasked to become the team’s bookend opposite Lane Johnson. After being a serviceable Pac-12 tackle in a pass-happy offense, will his workout numbers translate to becoming a dominant force on the field? 
2 (53)

Acquired from Baltimore

Miles Sanders RB/Penn State 49/2nd Round Sanders came to Penn State ranked as the No. 1 running back in the entire country by several recruiting services.  He is adequate in blitz pick-up and -although largely unproven as a route runner- possesses soft hands.  As he moves on to the NFL, he will become more aware of his ball security.
2 (57) J.J. Arcega-Whiteside WR/Stanford 100/3rd Round Arcega-Whiteside, the 2014 South Carolina Gatorade Player of the Year, and former high school basketball standout, brings a high-flying style to the field.  It will be important for the Eagles to move him around some, like they did at Stanford. 
4 (138) Shareef Miller DE/Penn State 138/4th Round Miller -a junior-entry who ranked 138th on our Big Board- could prove to be a better pro than collegian.  He is better with his hand in the dirt than out of a two-point stance and often translates speed-to-power on line games and stunts.  He bought into DL coach Sean Spencer’s various techniques the last two seasons.
5 (167)

Acquired from New England via Los Angeles via Kansas City

Clayton Thorson QB/Northwestern 178/3rd Round His moxie, arm strength, athleticism and overall pocket presence complement above average size. He won 35 of his 53 career games in school and was 3-1 as a starter in bowl games (didn’t finish the Music City Bowl).  He did, however, bring his team back from a 20-3 deficit in the 2018 Holiday Bowl. 

2019 NFL Combine, Day 1, Offensive linemen: ‘Who got nasty?’

The 2019 NFL Combine featured a collection of very athletic offensive linemen on Day 1. We take a look at four players from the group who helped their respective stocks.

Joshua Miles 6’5 314 OL Morgan State

The former Western Tech High School star and Baltimore, Maryland native had already won his fair share of bar room brawls during the week of 2019 East-West Shrine practices. Tough to dislodge from inside at guard, he also slid his feet well at times during the week at left tackle.

The last player drafted from Morgan State was back in 2003. Former Bears and New York Giants tight end Visanthe Shiancoe impressed NFL scouts during his own combine performance with an eye-opening 39 1/2-inch vertical leap while weighing in around the 251-pound mark.

While that leap was impressive, the 36-inch vertical jump that Miles – a 2018 All-MEAC performer- turned in on Friday may end up as the most impressive athletic feat of the weekend. Why? He weighs in the 315-pound range. When you couple that with his 9’1″ broad jump, it is easy to quantify his lower body explosion on the field. His 4.75-second showing in the 20-yard short shuttle will also open the eyes of NFL teams. He is a near lock to become just the second Bear drafted in the last 37 years.

Max Scharping 6’6 327 OL Northern Illinois

Max Sharping (No. 73 pictured) started 53 consecutive games for the Huskies.

An above average postseason has been icing on the cake so far for Scharping, whose game is defined by his patience. On film, he frustrates defensive ends by always keeping his hands up around his numbers in a position ready to punch. He understands angles. The kinesiology graduate and Academic All-American offers teams flexibility. He started at right guard, right tackle and left tackle in school.

On Friday, he put to rest some doubts about his true foot quickness and explosiveness despite not running a 40-yard dash. He went under 4.7 seconds in the 20-yard short shuttle (4.69), posted an impressive 28-inch vertical jump and notched a respectable 7.77 time in the all-important three-cone drill. Perhaps even more impressive was that he did it while weighing in seven pounds heavier than he did at the 2019 Senior Bowl.

Trey Pipkins 6’6 309 OT Sioux Falls

Pipkins (No. 78 pictured) was the first player ever selected to attend the NFL Combine from Sioux Falls.

NFL teams want to see a player dominate his level of play (Division II) and Pipkins obliged, turning in an All-American campaign that routinely saw him finish versus overmatched personnel. Regardless of the personnel, he has shown an element of ‘nasty’ finishing linebackers and defensive ends once he gets his hands inside the numbers (2nd QTR/4:33, Minnesota State Moorhead ’18; Jones, Day 2, East-West Shrine ’19-pancakes him through ground).

Although he underwhelmed in the bench press (16 repetitions at 225 pounds), he made it up for it with a solid on-field workout. He was fluid changing directions and displayed much of the base that has been evident on film. On Friday, he ran a 5.12 40-yard dash, went an eye-opening 33 1/2 inches in the vertical jump and also posted an equally impressive 9-foot-6-inch broad jump. For good measure, he blazed a 7.61-second time in the three-cone drill.

Michael Jordan 6’6 312 OC-OG Ohio State

Ohio State’s Michael Jordan (No. 73 pictured) started 41 games for the Buckeyes.

When you hear the name Jordan you immediately think of the ability to sky over the competition. The former Buckeye has the look of a heavy NBA power forward. Despite 34 1/4-inch arms, he still posted a 32 1/2-inch vertical jump. He also recorded a broad jump (9’8″) that bested even some of the running backs, including Temple’s Ryquell Armstead, who ran a 4.45 40-yard dash.

It could partly explain how he’s been able to compensate versus leverage defenders at the center spot, where he can execute his combo-rub blocks with efficiency (see Tulane ’18). His pad level is still an issue at times and this was even apparent at the left guard spot in 2017 (see Indiana). His quickness, however, in the 20-yard short shuttle (4.71) helps explain his above average ability to pull in confined areas. Jordan helped his stock on Friday.

OFFENSIVE LINE RESULTS

Alabama’s Miller making his mark

Alabama outside linebacker Christian Miller is blessed with NFL bloodlines.  His father, former NFL linebacker Corey Miller, enjoyed an eight-year NFL career with the Minnesota Vikings and New York Giants that included 72 starts, 14 sacks, seven interceptions and a host of tackles.

Miller hasn’t been able to get his career on the same upward trek up to this point, but he has shown flashes in the past.  Before going down to a biceps injury versus Florida State in 2017, he had already run through the Seminoles offensive tackles on a couple of occasions when defending the run out of a two-point stance.  Well- balanced at 6-foot-4, 247 pounds, he has enough length to occasionally battle with offensive tackles on the edge (see picture vs. USC’s Chad Wheeler in 2016).  He possesses the necessary bulk to create separation while deciphering the action.

So how has he grown mentally over the last year?

First of all, he didn’t allow the biceps injury to end his 2017 campaign.  He rehabbed religiously to make a comeback in time for Alabama’s national championship run.  His arduous journey draws high marks if for nothing more than its pure tenacity.  Miller put it best when he described the passage prior to the team’s Sugar Bowl contest against Clemson in early January.

“I feel good. This is what we wanted,” Miller said. “This is the opportunity that we wanted. Obviously had a rough start to the season with getting injured in the first game. But I rehabbed and worked back, and now I’m back.” (https://www.seccountry.com/alabama/christian-miller-describes-grueling-rehab-shit-not-easy).

And he didn’t just come back, he contributed.  In the 2018 National Championship Game, he was seen lining up on the punt team at the left tackle spot.  In the same game, he used a right-handed post versus a tight end and just wouldn’t quit on a down that resulted in a quarterback sack after he re-mapped his course.

Coming into this season, the true test would be to see if his pass rush variety would improve coming off the edge.  Last week vs. Ole Miss in Oxford, he put together arguably his best career performance to date (5 tackles, 2.5 QB sacks, 2.5 TFLs).   His first quarterback sack came on a play from the left defensive end spot.  He took a shoulder away and then surfed around the corner to wheel the edge and get the quarterback on the ground. On this play, he displayed an increased skill running the loop.   He later ran over a running back (in a one-on-one blitz pick-up) with a speed-to-power rush that resulted in his second quarterback sack.

These types of plays create a baseline to judge Miller on for the rest of the season.  As a competent complementary pass rusher alongside Dylan Moses, Isaiah Buggs and Raekwon Davis, the former five-star recruit may give the Crimson Tide’s defense even more room to blossom.

New York Giants vs. Dallas Cowboys, 9-16-18: In-game report

In a classic NFC East battle, the Dallas Cowboys (1-1) and the New York Giants (0-2) turned back the clock and played a style of football reminiscent of their 1990s encounters. The Cowboys prevailed 20-13.  DraftNasty’s Troy Jefferson gives his impressions in this in-game report:

Cowboys defense

Giants quarterback Eli Manning completed 33-of-49 passes but averaged just 4.4 yards per attempt on Sunday night.

If it hasn’t already, the game ball should go to defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli.  The Cowboys harassed the Giants offense all game, holding their division rival to 35 rushing yards and sacking Eli Manning six times.  Marinelli utilized  his traditional single high safety looks with a few twists.  Throughout the game, the fifth-year Cowboys defensive coordinator threw in some slot blitzes and twisting stunts along the defensive line.  Manning was forced to run off his spot and settle for checkdowns. Even when he had time, he “hopped” in the pocket and didn’t set his feet to throw.  A good example of this was in the second quarter on third down when Manning panicked and rushed a throw that went behind his intended receiver Odell Beckham, Jr.   The Giants addressed their skill positions in the offseason but Dallas took advantage of an offensive line and a quarterback that were out of sync.

Cowboys kicking game

Much to the dismay of Cowboys fans, Dan Bailey was released before the season. Bailey, who had an 88-percent field goal accuracy percentage over his seven-year career, was replaced with 28-year old rookie Brett Maher.  Maher missed his only field goal attempt from 47 yards against the Panthers in Week 1, but did go 2-of-2 against the Giants. The kicks were from 37 yards and 29 yards respectively.  Maher wasn’t tested in Week 2 with long range attempts but his progress over the season will be worth monitoring.  In a division which is so heavily balanced, special teams could decide who makes the playoffs and who doesn’t.

Saquon Barkley

The Giants second overall draft pick has showed through two games that he can contribute in multiple ways.  Dallas looked to stack the box against the run while also avoiding the home run ball to receivers Odell Beckham and Sterling Shepard.  Despite rushing for just 28 yards, Barkley caught 14 passes for 80 yards. The rookie from Penn State has transferred his open field deceptiveness from college to the NFL.  On one play in the second quarter, Barkley caught the ball in the flat by beating the Cowboys linebackers to the outside and then used a spin move to avoid safety Kavon Frazier to gain a few extra yards.  Look for head coach Pat Shurmur to continue to tailor the playbook to get Barkley more quick touches in the open field, whether that be in the running or passing game.

 

2018 NFL Draft recap, pick-by-pick: NFC East

NFC EAST

 

Dallas Cowboys

Vander Esch hopes to bring championships to the Cowboys over the next few years.

Notable picks: Vander Esch may prove to be the difference-maker that the Cowboys envision with his versatility. Armstrong’s uneven pre-draft workouts are not at all an indication of his on-field burst and athleticism. Williams adds some swing backup insurance and could outplay his original draft position.

Round,

Selection,

 

Player School DN Big Board

Rank/

Grade

‘Nasty’ Take:
1 (19) Leighton

Vander Esch

6’4 256

Boise State 36 (2nd Round) Athletic former basketball player has to become better in his stack-and-shed. Underrated range in coverage.
2 (50) Connor

Williams

6’5 296

Texas 3 (1st Round) Williams’ injury in 2017 following an inauspicious start to his junior campaign. When he’s on top of his game, the finish is in place.
3 (81) Michael

Gallup

WR-6’1 205

Colorado St. 145 (3rd Round) Gallup wins outside the numbers and plays with a physical style that is even stronger than his sturdy 205-pound nature suggests play-to-play.
3 (82) Tracy

Walker

DB-6’1 195

Louisiana-Lafayette 191 (4th Round) Walker has enough length that he could even get looks at a cornerback spot. A solid tackler, his best football may be ahead of him.
4 (116) Dorance

Armstrong, Jr.

OLB-6’4 257

Kansas 49 (2nd Round) Armstrong, Jr. has an 84-inch wingspan and produced 20 tackles for loss in 2016.
4 (140) Dalton Schultz

TE-6’4 249

Stanford 296 (4th Round) Schultz is an underrated route runner despite producing just 11 third down receptions in school.
5 (171) Mike

White

QB-6’4 223

Western Kentucky 155 (3rd Round) White has all of the tools of an NFL starting quarterback minus the mobility.
6 (208) Cedrick

Wilson

WR-6’3 194

Boise State 78 (3rd Round) Wilson produced like a first-round wideout in the MWC. Will his 4.55 speed translate to the perimeter or will he be relegated to the slot?
7 (236) Bo

Scarbrough

RB-6’1 228

Alabama 308 (5th Round) It may have been a long wait on draft day, but the bruising runner could be a change-of-pace power back if he can contribute on special teams.

 

 

 

New

York

Giants

Hill (No. 98 pictured) ranked as one of DraftNasty’s Top 3-4 DEs/DTs available in the 2018 NFL Draft. The former Wolfpack star rushed for over 800 yards and 5 TDs as a senior at the prep level.

Notable picks: Hernandez is a mammoth blocker who wins on man blocks.   If he can win as an angle blocker, it will increase the diversity of the running game.  Hill and McIntosh both will add diversity to a defense that finished 27th against the run in 2017.

Round,

Selection

 

Player School DN Big Board

Rank/

Grade

‘Nasty’ Take:
1 (2) Saquon

Barkley

RB-6’0 233

Penn State 2 (1st Round) Barkley’s lateral agility is top-notch. How much will he contribute as a check down threat?   Based on his collegiate film, he should line up at a number of spots.
2 (34) Will

Hernandez

OG-6’2 327

UTEP 21 (2nd Round) A behemoth bar room brawler with mass and underrated quickness, Hernandez has to distribute his weight evenly to reach his immense potential.
3 (66) Lorenzo

Carter

OLB-6’5 250

Georgia 68 (3rd Round) Carter has some similarities to current Carolina Panthers DE Mario Addison. Can he create speed-to-power off the edge?
3 (69) B.J. Hill

DL-6’3 311

NC State 22 (2nd Round) Hill’s dependability is aided by an ability to play a bit longer than his 77-inch wingspan would suggest. Makes plays laterally in the run game.
4 (108) Kyle

Lauletta

QB-6’3 222

Richmond 154 (3rd Round) Lauletta –the 2017 CAA Offensive Player of the Year- maintains good posture in the pocket and excels on the hit-and-throw concepts. Posted a 4.07 time in the 20-yard short shuttle at the NFL Combine.
5 (139) RJ

McIntosh

DT-6’4 286

Miami (Fla.) 161 (3rd Round) McIntosh has the size to play either DE or DT.   His 83-inch wingspan complements a light-footed nature. He needs to anticipate snap counts with more consistency.

 

 

Philadelphia Eagles

Former Pittsburgh cornerback Avonte Maddox (No. 14 pictured) played WR, CB, PR KR and the nickel back spot for the Panthers. He will add versatility to the Super Bowl champions’ roster.

Notable pick: Maddox is a player who went undervalued due to size and slight durability concerns. His ability to cover the slot could increase some of the packages by DC Jim Schwartz. Schwartz typically likes to rush with four players and Maddox could increase coverage disguises.  The Eagles got three of our top 60 players with their first three selections.

Round,

Selection,

 

Player School DN Big Board

Rank/

Grade

‘Nasty’ Take:
2 (49) Dallas

Goedert

6’4 260

South Dakota St. 56 (2nd Round) Goedert gives the Eagles two tight ends who can attack vertically in the seams of the field. And he weighs in the 260-pound range.
4 (125) Avonte

Maddox

CB-5’9 183

Pittsburgh 53 (2nd Round) Maddox’s 4.39 40-yard dash at the Combine was only outdone by his 6.51 time in the 3-cone drill. He’s even better on the field than in T-shirts and shorts.
4 (130) Josh

Sweat

DE-6’5 251

Florida St. 58 (2nd Round) Sweat fell due to lingering question marks about his knee.   When he’s feeling good, he can translate speed-to-power with one-hand posts and collapses the edge vs. tackles.
6 (206) Matthew

Pryor

OT-6’6 343

TCU 375 (5th Round) Pryor sits on run defenders with his mammoth size.   He often wins in the first phase of block. 11 ½-inch hands.
7 (233) Acquired from New England Patriots Jordan

Mailata

OL-6’8 346

Australia Rugby player N/A Mailata never played college football, but he ran in the 5.1-range for NFL scouts.

 

Washington Redskins

Settle (No. 4 pictured) posted 19.5 tackles for losses the last two seasons for the Hokies.

Notable picks: Christian will help alleviate the issues the Redskins had last year when injuries beset the offensive line. Can he swing to the center position to challenge incumbent Chase Roullier?  Settle is a player who was once thought of as a potential second-round pick before an uneven postseason.

Round,

Selection,

 

Player School DN Big Board

Rank/

Grade

‘Nasty’ Take:
1 (13) De’Ron

Payne

DT-6’2 311

Alabama 30 (2nd Round) Payne will help to control the action as a fire-plugging two-gap specialist and occasional one-gap penetrator. Expect to see him aligned over the center in DC Greg Manusky’s three-man fronts.
2 (59) Derrius

Guice

RB-5’11 224

LSU 24 (2nd Round) Guice will have to balance his bullish running style to avoid the injury scrapes that took away time from him as a junior.
3 (74) Geron

Christian

OT-6’5 298

Louisville 79 (3rd Round) Christian’s versatility in school saw him move around during games. He was seen snapping the ball on his Pro Day and it could be a possible transition to a starting role.
4 (109) Troy

Apke

S-6’1 200

Penn State 147 (3rd Round) Apke didn’t make a number of plays off the hash, but he demonstrated range during the week of the 2018 NFLPA Collegiate Bowl and versus Pittsburgh in 2017.
5 (163) Tim

Settle

DT-6’3 329

Virginia Tech 200 (4th Round) Settle’s quickness is aided by power. He will win versus guards or centers and could be a rotational piece on first and second down.
6 (197) Shaun

Dion Hamilton

LB-6’0 228

Alabama 231 (4th Round) Crimson Tide team captain has battled major lower extremity injuries, but he can locate, identify and close once he’s made his reads.
7 (241) Greg

Stroman

CB-5’11 174

Virginia Tech 381 (5th Round) With Stroman’s level of return ability, it is easy to forget that he also broke up 27 passes and picked off 9 passes in school.
7 (256) Trey Quinn

WR-5’11 203

SMU, LSU 227 (4th Round) Mr. Irrelevant caught 114 passes in 2017 after an unsettling stint at LSU. His savvy and quickness earn high marks.