With The 60th Pick, in the 2016 NFL Draft, The New England Patriots Select...

Updated: April 19th

 

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PICKS 48-63

1st Round

Picks 1-11.

Picks 12-22.

Picks 23-32.

2nd Round

Picks 32-47.

Picks 48-63.

3rd Round

Picks 32-47.

Picks 48-63.

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48.

from

57.

Packers

Defense: 3-4

Jason Spriggs

OLT, Indiana

6-6, 301, (O) 4.94!

34.1" Arm, 31 Reps!

9'7" Broad! 7.7 3-Cone.

 4.44 Short Shuttle,

 

Leonard Floyd

ILB/OLB Georgia

OLB, NT(R), TE, CB, LB, OLB, RB, OL, DL,

2016 Picks:

1 (27) Kenny Clark DT UCLA

2 (48) Jason Spriggs OT Indiana

3 (88) Kyler Fackrell OLB Utah St.

4 131) Blake Martinez LB Stanford

4 (137) Dean Lowry DE Northwestern

5 (163) Trevor Davis WR California

6 (200) Kyle Murphy OT Stanford

Key F.A. Signed:

Nick Perry LB

Key F.A.:

James Starks RB 

Don Barclay OT 
James Jones WR 
John Kuhn FB 
Jamon Meredith G 
Letroy Guion DE 
Mike Neal LB 

Sean Richardson S 

Mason Crosby K 
Scott Tolzien QB  
 

Key F.A. Lost:

B.J. Raji DT  (R)

Casey Hayward CB

The Team: I had this pick. Okay, I didn't have Green Bay moving to this pick, but I had Spriggs going in this spot at Pick 48 to the Indianapolis Backstabbers. 

Spriggs is a guy with elite athleticism, but he needs to get stronger and some technique work. "He got stronger," Gutekunst said. "He was able to add some weight. The athleticism was always there, the ability to cover speed on the edge. The strength is the thing that really progressed." He has to learn to kickstep in pass pro every time.

They had him doing some odd techniques in their offense. "Itís one of those things you have to balance, getting pumped up and staying relaxed, so you donít go flying and overset somebody," Spriggs said. "You have to be patient and wait on the pass rush, but at the same time, thereís a sense of urgency. Itís just a constant battle all game, and thatís really what you want." But he has the physical traits to play OLT in the NFL. 
Gutekunst watched Spriggs at the Senior Bowl for the first time. "He's going to get bigger," Gutekunst said. "He's got the frame to add some weight. He's young. It didn't take long to figure it out [he had the athletic traits to play OLT in the NFL]." Now it's just a matter of getting into an NFL program and learning NFL technique, and weight room work.

One thing about Spriggs he sounds ready to work. "It was indescribable how excited I was," Spriggs said. "Just to be a part of such an organization, just to have an organization believe in me, that they wanted to pick me up and bring me onto the club. There's no words to explain the excitement. With a quarterback like Aaron Rodgers, you're at a whole new level there that I've never seen, that really excites me. I can't wait to be able to get the chance." Not this season but next season, he is going to be protecting Rogers back. 

They probably see him as an OLG for a year, with two veteran O-tackles ahead of him. They had two two solid starters in Bakhtairi and Bulaga. "He's one of those guys that has really good flexibility and balance to sustain and drive," Gutekunst said. "You look at his frame, he's about 305, somewhere in there right now. But he's going to get bigger. He's young. He's got a frame to add some weight." But the two veterans will allow them to bring Spriggs along slowly. 

I can tell you one thing, no one saw this coming. When you trade up for a guy in the 2nd, you expect him to be a starter. "You look at the total package," Thompson said. "The intelligence, the athletic ability. Innate toughness. We think all those things, he gets pretty good marks on" But I don't think Spriggs is ready. It is not his fault, but he did not do a lot of blocks in pass pro at Indiana that he will be doing in the NFL. They had him mostly shuffle and catch or get in the way of rushers. Instead of kickslide, punch, and grab.

The Player: 4/19 Jason Spriggs: Not Quite Ready.

Springs is a guy who looked like an NFL OLT at the Combine, but didn't always play like one. Great athlete. He needs to close the inside gate. Needs a little work in his core strength. Phenomenal feet moving laterally. He was so quick and light on his feet in side to side drills. Great quickness in his feet. Nice hitter moving straight ahead. He leaves the inside gate open too much. He has to close the gate and save his QBs life. Looked great in kickslide drill. He beat the rusher to the far side. I never saw that before. Nice wide base in mirror drill. He looked so smooth moving side to side. Despite his tendency to open up the inside gate to the passrusher, he only allowed 2 Sacks on almost 500 pass attempts.

2015 (Senior): Allowed just two sacks in 475 called pass attempts Ö finished with 79 knockdowns in a team-high 1,074 snaps Ö started all 13 games at right guard Ö Indiana finished first in the Big Ten in total offense, passing offense and scoring offense, while placing second in rushing offense ... the Hoosiers became the first team since Ohio State in 1995 to lead the league in total, passing and scoring offense ... IU led the conference in scoring offense for the first time since the Big Ten began using the entire season as the statistical champion in 1985 ... Indiana had not led the league in total offense since 1988 ... the Hoosiers became the fourth college football team to have a 3,500-yard passer, a pair of 1,000-yard running backs and a 1,000-yard receiver in the same year ... IU was one of only two Power Five conference teams with two 1,000-yard running backs (Baylor) ... the offensive line allowed 13 sacks, tied for the seventh fewest nationally ... Indiana set single-season school records with 475 total points, 6,556 total yards, 3,820 passing yards, 337 first downs and 168 passing first downs Ö IU offensive player of the week (Michigan) Ö six-time game captain.

The Reason: They have four O-linemen with one year left on their contract. "I think it was just a chance to take a really good player we liked. I don't know if we look that far ahead all the time," Gutekunst said about both starting tackles being free agents in 2017. "He was just a guy we really liked, opportunity presented itself to go up, and we took it." Spriggs was the guy they wanted as the OLT of the future. But they got so nervous they were going to lose him that they had to jump up to get him. "We were sweating it," Thompson said. "Looking at the board, it just didnít look like the board was going to hold up all the way. So we felt like, you know, weíre always making phone calls, always talking to teams, and there came an opportunity, and it might have been a little bit conservative on my part, but I felt like Iíd rather have him than risk losing him. We really wanted to make him a Packer right about there. We felt like we were dancing with the devil if we waited too much longer." Both Bakhtairi and Bulaga are free agents after this season.

49,

from

56.

Seahawks

Defense: 4-3

Jarran Reed-

DL Alabama

6-3, 315, 

 

Germain Ifedi-

OT A&M

OT, OG, RB, DT, OL, LB, WR,

2016 Picks:

1 (31) Germain Ifedi OT Texas A&M

2 (49) Jarran Reed DT Alabama

3 (90) CJ Prosise RB Notre Dame

3 (94) Nick Vannett TE Ohio St.

3 (97) Rees Odhiambo OG Boise St.

5 Quinton Jefferson DT Maryland

5 (171) Alex Collins RB Arkansas

6 (215) Joey Hunt C TCU

7 (243) Kenny Lawler C California

7 (247) Zac Brooks RB Clemson

Key F.A.:

Christian Michael RB

Jermaine Kearse WR

J'Marcus Webb O G/OT

Chris Clemons DE

Ahtyba Rubin DT

Mike Morgan LB 

Jeremy Lane CB 

Key F.A.:

Tarvaris Jackson QB 

Bryce Brown RB 

Fred Jackson RB

Ricardo Lockette WR 
Anthony McCoy TE 
Chase Coffman TE 

Lemuel Jeanpierre OC 

Will Tukuafu FB 

Demarcus Dobbs DE 
DeShawn Shead CB  

Jon Ryan P 

Key F.A. Lost:

Russell Okung OT 

J.R. Sweezy OG

Alvin Bailey OL

Brandon Mebane DT

Bruce Irvin LB 

The Player: 5/10 The Alabama Four: Jarran Reed: Part III.

50.

from

52.

Texans

Defense: 3-4

Nick Martin

OC/OG Notre Dame

6-4, 299, (O) 5.22,

32 1/2" Arm, 28 Reps,

8'1", 7.57 3-C,

 

*Corey Coleman

WR Baylor

RB, WR, 5-T NT, DB, OL, TE, WR,  

2016 Picks:

1 (21) Will Fuller WR Notre Dame

2 (50) Nick Martin C Notre Dame

3 (85) Braxton Miller WR Ohio St.

4 (119) Tyler Ervin RB San Jose St.

5 (159) K.J. Dillon S West Virginia

5 (166) D.J. Reader NT Clemson

Key F.A. Signed:

Brock Osweiler QB 

Lamar Miller RB

Tony Bergstrom OC

Jeff Allen OG/OT

Kendall Reyes DE 

AJ Bouyes CB

Quintin Demps S

Antonio Allen S

Key F.A.:

Brandon Weeden QB 
T.J. Yates QB

Chris Polk RB 

Jeff Adams G 
Chris Clark OT  

Devon Still DT 
Charles James CB  

Nick Novak K 

Shane Lechler P

Key F.A. Lost:

Arian Foster RB

Nate Washington WR 

Brandon Brooks G 

Ben Jones OC

Jared Crick DE 

The Team: They got their Center of the present and future. "Heíll start off at center, but the versatility of him being able to play guard was something that we really liked," Bill O'Brien said. "His toughness. His leadership. Heís a very bright guy. One of the guys that we spoke to was Harry Hiestand, their line coach there at Notre Dame, he really spoke highly of this guy. He was a leader in the room and somebody that really came to practice every single day with a purpose and was a guy that could communicate well with his teammates which is really a key at center in addition to his talent obviously. Obviously his versatility was something that stood out to us too." He also comes from great stock.

His brother was an instant All-Pro for Dallas. "Well the first pick in the second round, we really feel like Nick Martin is an outstanding addition to the football team," O'Brien said. "I think you know from my history, I put stock in careers, I put stock in leadership, I put stock in a lot of those things and Nick certainly has those. Heís got pedigree, he has an NFL pedigree, so heís been around it. Weíve gone to the well twice in Indiana at Notre Dame, and as a Purdue man thatís been difficult for me, but Iíve managed to survive. We just really feel like he adds to our offensive line group. Heís a guy that can come right in, heís a plug-and-play guy, heíll compete right away we think, so weíre happy to get him. We did move obviously a couple spots to get him and felt strongly about adding him to the team, and thatís why we did that. Then obviously the last pick in the third round with Braxton Miller, just a versatile player, explosive player, again, trying to impact our football team and as we talked about a few days ago when we were talking about our preparation for the draft in terms of adding players who have dimensions to them, who can add dimensions to our football team, who can make plays with the ball in their hand or on the ball, and certainly he can do that." Plus he played for the Fighting Irish.

They had a plan for Day One and Two, and got three players that they think can impact the team in 2016. "What I feel about that is I feel like we got three good football players in the first three rounds and thatís what we're focused on," Rick Smith said. "So much about the draft and successful execution on draft day, preparation is the most important thing but some of its gut feel, so you've got to have a feel when you need to move, when you donít, when you can sit and maybe get a guy you want. We just feel like so far we've been fortunate with the three young men we've added to our football team." They don't need a lot to propel them into the top slot in their Division. I think they did it this off season.

The Player: Martin is a big time prospect with great blood lines. Excellent goal line blocker. Plug and play OC. Light on his feet. All business at the Combine. Nice quick more to the right right off the snap in kickslide drill. Stayed low and in control in mirror drill.

Houston is hoping he can play like his brother. "Weíre honestly best friends, went to high school together, became very close and we lived together in college," Nick said. "Best friends at the same time and heís the person I look up to. Heís the first person I go to when I have advice and he looked at me and said pretty much weíll be neighbors now in Texas. Itís a pretty cool feeling." It also gives him a leg up in preparing for the NFL as a rookie. 
His brother has worked with him. "Yeah absolutely," Nick said. "I think one thing is versatility, being able to play at both guard and center and then even right tackle if need be. Also just finishing I think is one of the biggest things. Even going back to high school, Coach Lorenzano, my high school coach, just instilled that finishing every play no matter what, staying after it, even if youíre in a bad position you can finish a play if you just work harder than the guy." Nick saw what he went through as a rookie, and his versatility to start and Guard and Center. 

His brother has been giving him advice and that can only help him. "Yeah absolutely, the first thing he said is it's a job and you have to perform. You have to go to work every day and put in the extra hours. Like you said, thereís people trying to take peopleís jobs and thatís what it comes down to. Youíve got to perform on Sunday because theyíre not paying for school or anything. Itís a job and theyíll fire you if youíre not performing." He already thinks like a Pro.

And if you want to pattern your game after anyone, working with the guy who stepped into the League and was instantly one of the top four Guards in the NFL is a pretty special opportunity. "I would say honestly I pattern more of my game off my brother," Nick said. "Thatís who I grew up watching. Even in high school, he had success when I was going into high school. Thatís who I learned from a lot. Thatís who I watched at Notre Dame. I started with him his last year, but I took two years to really watch him and his habits on and off the field and how he became the player he is and watching him in the NFL, too." Plug and Play OC.

Senior Bowl: He played some guard at the SB, and showed he could pull and lead the RB into the whole. He is dominate on the double team block. He will drive the DT ten yards sideways. He gave up a tackle to Clemson DT #94 on their first 3rd down. He is very good at turning and doubling the DT late, when he is beating the OG to the QB when no one rushes his lane. Plays just as tough against the run as the pass. He looked great in rush drills. He was out there hitting guys at the Senior Bowl all over the field.

Stanford: He can get stood up by the DT. Smooth moving backward in pass pro. He can get stood up in pass pro, but then grab hold with an under hand technique and hold on. Heavy hands turning and hitting the DT on the double. Voted team captain and is known to be a great leader. Like his brother, he consistently uses suburb technique. But he is not as big and strong as his brother. 

UMass: Very impressive player. Shotgun snap is never a problem. Started for three seasons. Nice quick hands to get them up and into the DT. Picks up blockers flawlessly. Played OG as well. He easily handled the UMass D-linemen with his hands and balance. He plays with great balance and feet.

Virginia: Tough inside blocker who could play a little lower sometimes. He gets some nice push inside in the run game. Not explosive off the snap like his brother, more of a positional blocker. 

When you talk about bloodlines, Nick has it. "I think the strength of the offensive line is in the pack. It's the group. But the one guy is the guy with the same last name," coach Kelly said. "So it hasn't gone very far. Nick Martin is the leader of that group, all right, it's pretty clear." He has a lot of similar traits that have made his brother Zach successful in the NFL. 

He has his balance, smarts and leadership. He also has his consistency. "That's one of the best compliments you can have in football, 'consistency'," Zach's brother said. "It's no matter what happens, no matter what circumstances, he's going to get the job done." He gets it done almost as consistently as his brother.
Plus, he is tough, a fighter, and makes all the checks and calls at the line for the Fighting Irish. "A lot of that has been passed on from Zack," the ND HC Brian Kelly said. "That's why I consider him one of the great captains of my career. Because he passed on so much of that, and they are just following from a lot of what he passed on." If you want to be an OC in the NFL, you have to have the brains and leadership to run the Line. I really like how he uses his hands inside. He can get real physical with his hands, and then keep his legs driving to power DTs sideways and back. "You always want to be more physical, thatís the nature of the position," Martin said. "You really just want to go out and hit guys, and I think we want to do that on a more consistent basis this year." I love how he moves backwards with balance and power, and keeps his head on a swivel.

The Reason: "I think itís a combination of things," GM Rick Smith said. "I think itís a combination of the way that the board was set up. I think it obviously is a result of how the players have come off the draft board, but it is absolutely an intent for us. We wanted to add playmakers to this football team. We feel like weíve got a good team, and we feel like if we can add guys that have dimensions that can help us, and again I talked about the creativity of our coaching staff, I really feel like the combination of our communication throughout this process with the coaching staff and scouting staff about what these players will do when they walk in the door and the vision that weíve been able to articulate together I think has given us a chance to be very clear about what these guys are going to do and itís helped us. We can continue to do that tomorrow. I think weíll look back and say weíve had a pretty good draft process."

20.

51.

Jets

Defense: 3-4

Christian Hackenberg-

QB Penn State

6-4.5, 222, (O) 4.78! 

7.04 3-Cone, 32" Arm,

31" Vert, 9'6" Broad,

9" Hands,

 

*Darron Lee

LB Ohio ST

QB, OLT,  OLB/PR, OL, DB, WR, DT, 

2016 Picks:

1 (20) Darron Lee LB Ohio St.

2 (51) Christ. Hackenberg QB Penn St

3 (83) Jordan Jenkins LB Georgia

4 (118) Justin Burris CB NC St.

5 (158) Brandon Shell OT S. Carolina

7 Lac Edwards P Sam Houston St

7 (241) Charone Peake WR Clemson

Key F.A. Signed:

Jeremy Ross WR  

Matt Forte RB

Khiry Robinson RB

Bilal Powell RB

Zack Sudfeld TE

Ryan Clady OLT LOL

Mo Wilkerson DE (Tagged)

Steve McLendon NT

Jarvis Jenkins DL

Erin Henderson LB

Key F.A Lost: 

Ryan Fitzpatrick QB
Stephen Bowen, DE 
Randy Bullock, K 
Willie Colon, G  
Kellen Davis, TE 
Leger Douzable, DE    
Ben Ijalana, OT 
Jaiquawn Jarrett, S 
Jamari Lattimore, LB 
Chris Owusu, WR 
Calvin Pace, LB    

Key F.A Lost:

Chris Ivory RB 

Stevan Ridley RB

D'Brickashaw Ferguson LOL

Damon Harrison DT

Demario Davis LB

Antonio Allen S

The Team: He got worse every season at Penn State. "Christian has a great football IQ," the HC of the NJJ Todd Bowles said. "I understand the flaws he has with some of the [INTs] and overthrows, but these are things we think are correctable. We took the opportunity to work with this guy." He is going to take some time to straighten out the mess he has become the past two year.
But they are set up to not need him for two or three years, or never. "If we get Ryan back, he's our starter going in," Bowles said. "But they're more than welcome to take the position from him. Obviously, Ryan earned it from last year, and it's going to be hard to take it from him. Everybody else falls in, and let the competition work itself out." Right now Manuel is their starter, and they are looking or trade for Foles or resign Fitz.

He struggles throwing in the face of pressure. I always thought he ducked hits too much. "You know he's got a strong arm," Bowles said, "But right now it's all about learning, understanding the system, and getting himself acclimated." He has to learn to deal with pressure in his face and not let his feet panic. 

Then he lost his feet and accuracy last season. "There is a learning curve," Bowles said. "When we picked Leonard last year, we had Mo, Sheldon and Snacks [Harrison]. We knew he wasnít going to come in and start right away. Itís no different this year. We picked the best player at the spot and it just happened to be a quarterback." He has to learn to control his feet and eyes, and not stare at the rush.

And the Jets won't give Fitz his money. "We've said all along we want Ryan back," Bowles said. "We like Ryan. We want him back. Weíre still in talks with him. We just saw a good football player [Hackenberg] and had an opportunity to get him." Desperation can cause people to see what they want to see, and not necessarily what is there.

The best way to develop a developmental QB is to plan to never play him under any circumstance for 3 to 5 years. "Without Fitz being on the team right now, Genoís first-team and then weíll go from there," Bowles said. "Obviously weíre still working on a deal if we can get Fitzpatrick back. So until thatís addressed and we take care of that situation right now, Geno will go into OTAs as a starter." So right now there one true starting NFL QB is left daggling on the fish hook, and they have a rookie who needs 3 to 5 years, and a bust fighting it out to start the season. "I think theyíll work well together," Bowles said. "Christian is eager and willing to learn. Weíre eager to have him get in the building." I just love the new Jets management. ďObviously, Christian has a lot of physical ability in terms of arm strength, athletic ability, size," the GM of the NJJ Maccagnan said. "He's sort of prototypical from that standpoint. We worked him out. We had a private workout with him. We spent time with him. We had him in for a visit. We think he has a lot of potential. From a mental and aptitude standpoint. We think thereís a lot of ability to work with there." Meet the new boss, he's the same as the old boss. 

 

The Player: He has all the physical traits that NFL teams want in the QB. "You see some mistakes," Bowles said said about his ups and downs. "I don't know if you see bad habits. We can take every person in the draft and say they've got bad habits as well as ourselves. We saw enough that we're positive in what we got and we're willing to work with him and we're fine with that." It is all upstairs for him. 

After being freshman of the year and setting records for most competitions and passing yards, his coaching QB guru HC left the scene. "In talking with one evaluator, they were really impressed with his accuracy down the field, 20+ yards or so and past that," ex-NJJ QB Chad Pennington said. "He just needs to go in and be a sponge, soak in as much as he can and realize this is a great opportunity for him. I would imagine most people around him as well as outside of his group felt like he would probably be more toward the third to fifth round, so this is a great opportunity as a second-round draft pick to be able to come in and at least give a glimpse of what your potential could be, knowing youíre not going to be perfect starting from Day 1 and rookie minicamp. But you can certainly show the tools that you have, you can show the type of leadership skills you possess and how you work with your teammates and the people around you. I think thatís really, really important." Then he favorite target left for the Jags, his O-line fell apart, and his new coaches didn't know what to do with him. But he did start every game, 38 straight, while at Penn State.
But the only thing that really matters now is that he didn't quite. "I kept swinging," Hackenberg said. "It was a blessing, so I think itís only prepared me and Iím very excited to come in and again just get back to work and to be part of a team again. It feels like itís been forever with this whole draft process not having a building necessary to be operating out of." He will face a ton of adversity over the next few years with his butt stuck squarely on the bench.

He still has a shot, if he can finally put it together mentally. "I think youíre defined by how you react to not success but failure and adversity," Hackenberg said. "In my mind, I think my whole experience up there really prepared me to be able to take this next step. Not everything is going to be perfect and not everything is going to go the way you wanted it to especially at this level." He got kicked in the butt a lot the past two years.

Hackenberg has fallen apart since O'Brien left. His accuracy has fallen apart, as his O-line fell apart in front of him. "The tape is just terrible over the last two years," an NFC Exec said. "But he has traits and leadership. His freshman tape is good, but how do you discount everything you've seen for two years? That freshman tape is going to lead a team to overdraft him." However, he played great, and I mean great, in O'Brien's Pro Style offense as a freshman. So he should be a better Pro than his last two seasons in a bad scheme at Penn State would indicate. He blamed his coaches for his bad play in an interview, and that should have knocked him out of the 1st and 2nd Rounds. 

Illinois: As long as he keeps stepping up into pressure, I am going to keep moving him up the charts. He has it all physically. "He certainly has the physical build," Pennington said. "He has the tools necessary to be successful. I think he was able to show that early in his career when he was with Bill O'Brien. The system at Penn State was a difficult system for him to adjust to once the new coaching staff arrived, but I think heís excited about the opportunity. I know talking with some evaluators across the league, they were really high on him. They knew that not a lot of people were based upon his production his [Soph] and [JR] years. But physically, fundamentally and with his potential, I know some evaluators were really, really high on Christian Hackenberg." But he needs to work on his mental toughness in the pocket. Stares down his number one WR sometimes. He is playing so much better in the face of pressure than he did last season. But he is getting a ton of pressure this season. His O-line is not playing very well. Looses accuracy when he looses his feet. 

Georgia: When he throws with good feet and eyes he is a heck of a QB. But he doesn't always have time to set his feet and throw with proper technique and loses his accuracy. "They were really impressed with his accuracy," Pennington, LOL, said. "This one evaluator also thought that one improvement would be his short passing game, which you would think would be simple to correct and just making sure he is making good decisions and those types of things. I certainly think that the pro skill set is there, itís just a matter of being able to redevelop that." He will take off from time to time, and is actually not a bad runner. He doesn't do it very often, but he looks pretty good when he does. He doesn't have it mentally yet. His performance on the final drive he looked like he didn't know what was going on. I just wish he'd improved his accuracy the way he improved his bravery in the face of pressure.

Michigan: Sometimes he winds up a little too much. He played amazing well, with massive injuries along the O-line. They had seven different starting lineups on the O-line before the season was over. And he played well in the face of pressure. He played much better than last season under pressure. When he has time in the pocket, has can throw a beautiful pass down the seam, to the TE. He does a nice job with play fakes. He makes a couple of nice throws. "I donít know if itís about retraining," Pennington said. "It's just about redeveloping some of those pro-style tools that I think he actually has. He was the No. 1 recruit coming out of high school. People were really high on him as far as his potential as a college quarterback as well as a pro-style quarterback. So I think itís about redeveloping his skill set and the tools he has been blessed with, and he certainly has that skill set." But then always seems to throw a wild one or two.

Ohio State: He looked good against Ohio ST. That is the third straight game he impressed me. "I'm just going to work as hard as I can," Hackenberg said, "be the best teammate I can be, make plays when I have the opportunity to, and hopefully be trustworthy. I think that's the big word for teammates and coaches, to know what I'm doing and how to get things done. It starts this weekend, just getting through here and getting a strong base." He was ducking pressure the past two seasons, and he is not backing down to pressure this season so far. He was throwing over the rushers and taking hits. Not a lot to throw to however. His WRs stink. Looses accuracy when he looses his feet.

52.

from

50.

Atlanta

Defense: 4-3

Dion Jones

LB LSU

6-1, 222, (PD 4.38)!

35.5" Vert, 10' Broad,

7.13 3-Cone, 4.26 SS,

32;5" Arms, 18 Reps,

 

 

*Kevin Dodd- 

Edgerusher Clemson

DE/OLB/PR, DB, TE, LB, OL, FS, DL CB, FS, 

2014 Picks:

1 (17) Keanu Neal S Florida

2 (52) Deion Jones LB LSU

3 (81) Austin Hooper TE Stanford

4 (115) DeíVondre Campbell LB Minnesota

6 (195) Wes Schweitzer G San Jose St

7 (238) Devin Fuller WR UCLA

Key F.A. Signed:

Matt Schaub QB

Mohamed Sanu WR

Alex Mack OC

Bryce Harris OT

Quinton Couples DE

Adrian Clayborn DE

Sean Weatherspoon LB 

Courtney Upshaw OLB

Charles Godfrey S

Key F.A.:
Chris Chester G   
Jake Long OT 
Tony Moeaki TE  
Philip Wheeler LB 

Kroy Biermann OLB

Shayne Graham K 

Key F.A. Lost:

Roddy White WR

Paul Soliai NT

Derrick Shelby  DE

The Team: This is a great pick for Atlanta. They got a 6th back from the Jets to move down two spots and get the guy they wanted all along. "We feel like we were in the right place with it," Dimitroff said. "We ended up pulling away the players we needed. It was good for us, because we were devoid of a sixth round pick, and it's nice to have a sixth and a seventh. [So you can] potentially package those or use them. That always is helpful. Weíre in the middle of the fourth tomorrow; who knows how creative we can be with that extra pick." 

Jones is a tackling machine who ran a 4.38 and 4.42 at his Proday. "For Deion Jones, first off, the run-and-hit factor is totally alive. Heís an all-downs linebacker for us. Match up, running backs, tight ends. Now, the three-deep (zone) that we play, the ability to close and tackle in space is critical to playing inside íbacker in this spot." the HC of the AF Quinn said. Then continued. "I really went back through all these games this year, and we also went back through (all of) the games, Thomas and I did, the year before. I think the ability of what we saw totally jumped out on tape. It was the speed, the tackling, the physicality that he played with, and we knew we wanted to add that to our group." He finds the RB all over the field.

He is great out in space, and played with some chippiness last year. "When youíre playing at linebacker and youíre playing this much three-deep [zone], and youíre playing in space, youíd better have the ability to close and then get there with some nasty demeanor," Quinn said. "And he certainly fits that." I liked his nasty demeanor on Tape.
He has that knack for getting into the backfield and making tackles. "They didnít blitz him a lot, but he did have some," Quinn said about him getting TFLs. "He is a sideline-to-sideline player for sure, and I think that shows up in the speed and the physicality that he plays with." He seems to always be angling up field towards the ball.

They need a tough guy with speed and the ability to cover for their defense at MLB. "Certainly fits all the needs that we want at that spot" Quinn said. "That part of the game for him is on point in terms of being classically trained there. He sees things. For sure when he sees it, he goes and gets it. I think that totally showed up on the tape this year, the tackles that he had, the physicality that he played with. So he was somebody that kind of checked the boxes, so to speak, in terms of all the things that we looked for [at MLB]." He is also a special teams maven.
He came out of nowhere last season to show he had the competitive fire to dominate inside at linebacker. "Dan continues to drive this home," Dimitroff said. "It's amazing how we continue to press each other on maintaining what Dan wants to have with this team as far as the players. There are some good football players out there who may not possess that competitiveness and toughness weíre looking for." Some think he will be a Will for them. I like him in the middle.

The Player: Jones is pure speed to the ball. He uses his hands and feet together in perfect balance to shove past blockers and make tackles on the RB. It is amazing how often he finds a gap and bursts through it into the backfield. When he is in the backfield, he finds the RB and QB. He is an amazing tackling machine. Plays stronger than his weight would indicate, but if an OG gets his hands in his shirt he can put him on skates. Falls for play action too much. That will change with experience. Nice feet and balance moving sideways. He has that knack for running through traffic to the RB. Fills the hole on short yardage with speed and purpose. Great tackler. He comes in low, and consistently takes the RB down. Gallops backwards in zone drop, which is the only time I've seen him look even slightly awkward athletically. Great speed to the outside when the QB takes off and tries to meet him at the sideline. He only started one year. Played at Senior Bowl, and he was making tackles on special teams like he was back at LSU. He will not get out of the 2nd Round.

FLA:  Nice speed to get outside when he is lined up as the ILB in coverage, and the slot WR breaks outside. Great playing speed. He will blitz off the edge sometimes, and can shove off the RB and get his hands on the QB. Great MLB who can cover the TE in the Box. Interesting quick feet in zone drop. Elite special teams coverage guy, who can get downfield and tackle the kick returner inside the 20 all by himself. He can cover anyone. Great instinct in coverage. Plays with some chippiness sometimes. He can take the big hit by an OL, fall down, and still grab the RB as he tries to slash by him. Very tough kid. He uses his hands to take on blockers well, but he usually has to shove off and retreat to avoid them. He will get in trouble on short yardage when he has to avoid too many blockers. Needs to get stronger. Covers Slot WR sometimes and can knock the pass down with his hands.

Alabama: Great eyes. He reacts to the RB as quick as anyone I've seen. Sideline to sideline tackler who makes tackles to the sideline still angling forward. Great field speed. He can sidestep in front of the TE, and then switch off to the RB crossing in front of him. Great route recognition. Great awareness for guys crossing his zone and when to pick them up. Great burst and explosion changing direction. Great range down the seam in coverage. They sometimes have him drop deep down field like a Tampa Two MLB. Elite feet. I don't think I've ever seen a guy with better feet. He reminds me of Derrick Brooks from Tampa. He is small, but strong, and an all out all time, tough as nails, Tampa Two MLB.

Mississippi: He has great physical gifts. Great at finding the RB out in space. Makes blockers miss with his speed and quickness out in space. Takes great angles to the RB with speed, and always seems to be moving downfield into RB, even on outside runs. He can split blockers and get into the backfield. Always wants to move forward. Gets to tight ends quickly when they catch the ball in the Box. He can cover the tight end breaking outside all the way to the sideline. Fills the hole so fast that he is in the RB's feet before he knows it. He can fill the hole on the goal line and stop the big RB short. Great feet and COD in coverage, and can attack forward when the QB takes off faster than any LB I ever saw.

Eastern Michigan: Great at picking up the TE in the Box. Great eyes on the second level. He can step in front of two different receivers in his zone, and then go and hit the QB taking off. He can move through traffic, pick up tight end, and hit him right after he catches the ball. He can fight past the tight end's block in coverage, and still get outside and tackle the RB taking off after a swing pass. He had a pick six against E. Michigan covering the TE on a short Out to the Flat. He stepped in front of him and flew past everyone untouched. 

The Reason: The man can cover. "Not a lot of linebackers in history will run like that," Les Miles said. "That guy may be the fastest linebacker that I personally have been around that had any size to him at all. Heís absolutely the first. That fits into the NFL game as a guy that can move and make plays and has ball skills. Heís going to fit right into the NFL game." He is NFL caliber linebacker in coverage and special teams already.

They made their defense much faster with this pick. "For us, fortunately, he was one of the rare guys who played at a really faster speed," Quinn said. "You felt it. You saw it. You see it in the close when heís playing zone. You saw it when he was playing man-to-man." Every year coverage skills become more and more important trait for linebackers.

Teams have to have versatile players. "He adds tenacity to our defense," Dimitroff said. "You see the theme that we are going for here. Obviously, that is what Dan Quinn is about. That is what this defense is about. The ability to cover. Thatís going to be an important part of it. Ability to have range. He scrapes very well. He has a really nice feel to scrap inside. Steps up and make plays. All in all, we think heís just another well-rounded defensive player." He can do anything on the field with his speed and athleticism that you need him to do.

He is a four down linebacker. "We were pretty true to our board, as we are every year, and I think that came down to really having those discussions with Dan and his staff. We donít feel like we reached on anything," Dimitroff said. Then continued. "We felt like we stayed true to making sure that we were putting players in the spots where we needed more depth or we needed more competition. I canít stress that enough. I just really think that we were thoughtful in that approach, and we werenít whimsical about just going out there and trying to pull something and take a chance on someone." They stayed true to their Board and got into position to take the best player available on their Board.

22.

53.

Washington

Defense: 3-4

 

Su'a Cravens

LB USC

6-1, 232, 

32.1" Arms,  16 Reps,

9'6" Broad, 27" Vert,

 

*Josh Doctson-

WR TCU

DL, CB, OL, RB(FA), WR, DL, LB, DB, OL, 

2014 Picks:

1 (5) Brandon Scherff, OL Iowa.

2 Preston Smith, DE/OLB Miss ST

3 (95) Matt Jones, RB Florida

4 (105) Jamison Crowder, WR Duke.

4 (112) Arie Kouandjio OL Alabama

5 Martrell Spaight, LB, Arkansas

6 Kyshoen Jarrett DB Virginia Tech

6 (182) Tevin Mitchel, DB Arkansas

6 (187) Evan Spencer, WR Ohio ST

7 (222) Austin Reiter, OC S Florida

Key F.A. Signed:

Kirk Cousins QB 

Colt McCoy QB

Junior Galette DE

Mason Foster LB  

Will Blackmon CB 

David Bruton S

Key F.A.:

Colt McCoy QB 
Josh LeRibeus C 
Alfred Morris RB 

Pierre Thomas RB

Logan Paulsen TE 
Alex Smith TE  

Junior Galette DE 
Kedric Golston DE 

Will Compton LB 

Key F.A. Lost:

Terrance Knighton DT

Darrel Young FB

Robert Griffin III QB

Colt McCoy QB 

Jason Hatcher DL

Dashon Goldson SS

The Team: You have to have linebackers who can stay on the field on 3rd downs. "Cravens breaks the stereotype that strong safeties lack coverage skills," Goodbread said. "Cravens is the new-age type of hybrid defender NFL clubs are drawn to. The Redskins are sure to lean on Cravens' ability to play in space, and blanket backs and tight ends." He is similar to Dion Jones in coverage skills.

Rookies have a long way to go to be ready to play in September. "Just the tempo, the plays, the terminology, all thatís new to team," Gruden said. "To get them out there with helmets on and see them running around was exciting. Obviously we have high hopes for them, and they showed a lot of good things. A lot of things we can correct." They have already started at rookie OTAs. 

Playing Safety and linebacker at USC makes him more valuable in today's NFL. "Joe Barry and [the LB coach], theyíve really been working with me and helping me understand all their inside backer stuff,"  Craven said. "At the moment that's just what they want me to learn. They want me to learn the ins and outs of the defense and then later on theyíll move me back with the DBs and have me learn the defense from the outside-in. So right now Iím just taking it day by day and doing the best I can." So he will start out at ILB. 

He can play OLB and cover like a Safety, but he also has that knack for hitting the quarterback. "Yeah, there's not a lot of things that he can't do. He's a playmaker. When you're talking about defensive football nowadays, you want to get people who can do multiple things and be versatile in what they do and figure out ways to get the ball back for your offense. He's one of the top guys at his position. He's got position flex." Gruden said. "He can play in the box at linebacker, thereís a thought he might be able to play some safety. Once we get him in the building, we will figure out a way to get him on the field." They are talking about him as a Will to start. 

I really like this pick. "Thatís going to be the process from now until training camp," Gruden said. "Until our first regular season game. Itís going to be about coaching them up, and trying to utilize their skill the best we can. We're going to continue to figure that out. You know, thatís what our job is: to try to get him in the best situation possible where he's most comfortable. But initially we have to teach him a position, and right now itís going to be the inside linebacker, and then from there we might branch off where itís the nickel and it could be safety later on. But initially, give him something to sink his teeth into, learn it and then go on from there and see what he can do." I think he stays at LB, because his coverage skills are so unique at that position.

The Player: Cravens is a smaller cover linebacker who can stay on the field for four downs. "He's a lot of fun to watch because he processes quickly like an NFL linebacker and then just fires into the play," an ex-Exec said. "I've never really cared about the size at the Will, I just want to know if they have instincts and can run and make plays. That's it. He can do that." He can really move his feet.

Played three different positions in three years at USC, including strong safety. "At safety youíre in the open field and itís not as physical," Cravens said. "Youíre guarding tight ends, which is probably the most physical part and you have to work in the box here and there. But playing inside backer, youíre in the war at all times and youíre in the trenches and you have to be smart , you have to be fast, you have to make a decision or youíll be put on your back." He has more versatility than any defender in this Draft. 

The process has already begun. "To work hard and be in my playbook," Cravens said. "A lot of guys out there know their plays already, a lot of guys that were out there today that were on the on the practice team last year and or guys that were asked to come back and do the rookie minicamp and look [to] paying attention to those guys, they knew the playbook and weíre a lot faster than I was and that just comes from studying your playbook and knowing what theyíre doing. So over this next week or so, Iím really going to try to get in my playbook and be as fast as they were." He has hit the books. Rookies are at a distinct disadvantage, because they can't quite react, as they are thinking too much on the field.

Especially if they really do want him to learn more than one position as a rookie. "I like being physical," Cravens said. "I mean I want to make plays and being close to the ball allows me to do so. Youíve got to be fast, youíve got to be real fast and youíve got to make a decision." It is hard to be fast on the field when you are thinking too much.
Now he just has to show it on the field physically. "He's a phenomenal kid," Barry said. "Doesnít [just] like football. [The GM] Scot always talks about finding guys that are football players and love football. This kid loves football. He doesnít like it, he loves it. He eats, drinks, sleeps football." You have to love football in order to work as hard as these guys have to be successful on the field. 
His versatility helped get him Drafted, but it doubled his work over the next few months. "I feel whether its safety or linebacker, I can play the position," Craven said. "I learned it pretty well, the linebacker position, and I feel like I can still go back and get in the back-pedal at safety. It all depends on what the team wants." He played three different positions in his three years at USC.
He has to get to the point where he isn't thinking to start making plays. "I like that you can be a playmaker," Craven said. "You can be in open space. You can come fit down and get ready to protect against the run. And then also be in space and cover and show your athleticism. So it gives me the chance to use my instincts and just be in the right position to make plays." They might be better off just playing at LB as a rookie, and add a  position every year like they did at USC.

So the troubling transition has started for all these players already. "I just think I bring versatility to the next level," Cravens said. "I know the role of being a big safety is beginning to change. But now that guy that can run with slots and guard tight ends in man and then come into the box and be that extra linebacker without having to sub, itís pretty big nowadays. With the league becoming a passing league youíre going to need guys like that so I think now Iím at an advantage more than a disadvantage." The one who turns the studies into instincts the quickest are the ones who start as rookies.

CAREER: He has 120 tackles, including 18.5 for losses (with 5 sacks), plus 10 deflections, 1 fumble recovery, 1 forced fumble, 7 interceptions (1 for a TD) in his career. He has 26 career starts.
2015: The always-around-the-ball Cravens, who is a candidate for the Butkus, Lombardi, Bednarik, Nagurski and Lott Awards as well as All-American acclaim, returns for his third year as an impact starter, again playing strongside outside linebacker (a hybrid safety-linebacker role) as a junior in 2015.
2014: Cravens played a hybrid strong safety/strongside outside linebacker spot as a sophomore in 2014. Overall in 2014 while starting all 13 games, he had 68 tackles, including a team-best 17 for losses (with 5 sacks), plus 9 deflections and a team-best 3 interceptions (with 1 TD). He made the 2014 AP All-American third team, Athlon All-American third team, Phil Steele All-American fourth team and SI.com All-American honorable mention, as well as CollegeFootball News Sophomore All-American first team. He made the 2014 All-Pac-12 first team, as well as the Athlon All-Pac-12 first team, Phil Steele All-Pac-12 first team and CollegeSportsMadness.com All-Pac-12 first team. He won USC's Defensive Perimeter Player of the Year Award. He was 24th nationally in tackles for loss (1.3, fifth in Pac-12). He had more tackles for loss (17) in 2014 than any defensive back in the nation. His 17 tackles for loss in 2014 were the most by a non-defensive lineman at USC since linebacker Markus Steele's 17 in 2000.
2013: Cravens, who enrolled at USC in the spring of 2013 after graduating a semester early from high school, started at strong safety as a first-year freshman in 2013 and made quite an impact. Overall in 2013 while appearing in and starting 13 games (he suffered a groin injury against Utah and missed the Oregon State game), he had 52 tackles, including 1.5 for losses of 4 yards, plus 4 interceptions for 54 yards (13.5 avg), 1 deflection, 1 forced fumble and 1 fumble recovery. He also returned a kickoff for 33 yards (33.0 avg) and a punt for 1 yard.

23.

54.

Vikings

Defense: 4-3

Mackensie Alexander-

CB Clemson

5-10, 190, (PD) 4.47,

 SS 4.21, 3-C 7.18,

  37.5" Vert, 10'1" Broad,

6.94 3-Cone, 4.18 SS, 

 

Laquon Treadwell-

WR Mississippi

WR,  OL, DE, LB,  OL,  DT, OLB, S, 

2015 Picks:

1 (11) Trae Waynes CB Michigan St

2 (45) Eric Kendricks LB UCLA

3 (88) Danielle Hunter DE/OLB LSU

4-110 T.J. Clemmings OT Pittsburgh

5 (143) MyCole Pruitt TE S. Illinois

5 (146) Stefon Diggs WR Maryland.

6 (185) Tyrus Thompson, OL, OK

6 (193) B.J. Dubose, DT, Louisville

7-228 Austin Shepherd OT Alabama

7 Edmond Robinson, LB Newberry

Key F.A. Signed:

Matt Asiata RB

Alex Boone G 

Mike Harris G 

Andre Smith OT

Rhett Ellison TE 

Kendrick Ellis DE

Sealver Siliga NT

Travis Lewis LB 

Audie Cole LB 

Terence Newman CB

Marcus Sherels CB

Josh Robinson CB 

Andrew Sendejo S

Michael Griffin S

Key F.A. Lost: 
Kenrick Ellis DT 
Chad Greenway LB 
Casey Matthews LB   
Justin Trattou DE 
Jason Trusnik LB 

Robert Blanton DB 

Key Free Agents Signed:

Mike Wallace WR

The Team: This was a great pick by Spielman. "Had a pretty busy night tonight," Spielman said. "Weíll start with our 2nd round pick, Mackensie Alexander. Very competitive corner, another guy that has a lot of passion for the game. Spent time with him at the combine, I know Jerry Gray, our defensive back coach, went down to Clemson to work him out. We see him as a potential Nickel, and also with ability to flex and play outside as well. Love the way he played the game, he plays with smarts and savvy that weíre looking for and is a highly competitive kid. As Zimmer always says, you can never have enough corners. We are trying to create, even at that position, as much competition as we can." They have two starters already, and he is a plug and play Nickel.

He might be a nickel only CB, because of his size. "Heís 5'10" I think," Spielman said. "Zimmer loves him. But no, and like I said you cannot have enough corners. To have Trae Waynes and where he has progressed, and to add another corner in here to go along with our veteran corners, plus you look at the number of snaps now in the NFL that you play Nickel defense compared to the base defense, youíre going to need a lot of defense backs to get through a season." Nickel Corners have long been the 12th starter on defenses.

He also has two guys in front of him he is not going to supplant: Rhodes and Wayans. "That will all play itself out," Spielman siad. "All we are doing right now is trying to get the best football players we can get in here and the most competitive players. I think our 1st two picks, there is no question about the passion they have for the game. They are tough mentally, they love to play and I canít put a point of emphasis enough on that on how important that is to us. I know when it is crunch time and those guys have to compete, you can go into a foxhole with those guys and they will fight right next to you." Alexander will definitely fight next to you. 

But he is as smart and competitive as they come, and those are usually the guys who make it. "My job is not to get in your head, but if I get in your head, then thatís on you,Ē Alexander said during a media session at the combine. ďMy job is to eliminate you, and make you go elsewhere, make you do different stuff. Iím a very patient guy. I get the memo that I talk a lot of trash. I donít really talk trash. I speak facts. I just tell you what it is, and what youíre not going to do. If you get one, good. I gave you that. You didnít beat me. So stuff like that. I just do my job. If [WRs] are frustrated, that's on them." Getting into a WR's head is a good thing.

The Player: 3/24 The Clemson Three Part I: Mac Alexander.

The Reason: Your Nickel CB is a starter now a days. "Thatís intriguing," Spielman said. "Just loved the kidís confidence and loved his savvy for the game. I know Coach Zimmer said he does meet the minimum criteria height wise, and he says heís right at it. He says weíre good with it. But no, just love the kid, not only as a high character kid but for the way the kid competes. He competed at a very high level. The skill set that he has to play man coverage especially, and his feet and his quickness and the way he can mirror routes fits what we try to do from a scheme point." The NFL has changed so much that your Dime Corner should be considered to be your 13th starter on defense. 

His only negatives are height, and that he didn't garner an INT in college. "I would say he didnít have a lot of balls completed on him also, and thatís the most important thing," Spielman said. "I know Coach Zimmer preaches interceptions and turnovers are key, but also the one thing that I here Zimmer preach to our players out at practice is donít let your man catch the ball. He that criteria he checks the box in." But he did shut guys down.

He is a steal this late in the Draft. "Every pick I try to pick the best football player there," Spielman said. "Some guys will come in and contribute this year, some guys may contribute halfway through the season. Eventually they are going to contribute because they are such good football players. All I know is we tell every one of them you are going to come in, compete and get an opportunity to earn your spot on this roster and earn your play time on Sundays. When you have a bunch of guys, and you have the depth at each position like we have been trying to create all offseason, you are going to see guys rise and I think that is how you are going to create your best 53." He will be their starting Nickel or Dime Corner, depending on how much Terrence Newman has left. 

24.

55.

Bengals

Defense: 4-3

 

*Tyler Boyd

WR Pittsburgh

6-1 1/2, 197, (PD) 4.5,

34" Vert, 9'11" Broad,

6.9 3-Cone, 4.35 SS,

32" Arm, 11 Reps,

 

*William Jackson III

CB Houston

WR, OC, DB, WR, TE, FS, DL, 

2014 Picks:

1-21 Cedric Ogbuehi OT Texas A&M

2 (53) Jake Fisher, OL, Oregon

3 (85) Tyler Kroft, TE, Rutgers

3 (99) Paul Dawson, LB, TCU

4 (120) Josh Shaw, DB USC

4 Marcus Hardison DL Arizona ST

5 (157) C.J. Uzomah, TE Auburn

6 (197) Derron Smith, S, Fresno State.

7 (238) Mario Alford WR, W.Virginia

Key FA Signed:

Eric Winston OT 

Andrew Whitworth OLT

Brandon Thompson DT 

Pat Sims DT

Vincent Rey OLB

Adam Jones CB 

George Iloka S

Taylor Mays SS

Key Free Agents:  

Brandon Tate WR  

Wallace Gilberry DE  
Emmanuel Lamur OLB  

Leon Hall CB  

Key F.A. Lost:

Marvin Jones WR

Mohamed Sanu WR

Andre Smith OT

Reggie Nelson S 

The Team: This is a great pick for Cincy. "Weíre really excited with the addition of Tyler," Lewis said. "He had such a productive career at the University of Pittsburgh. He got off to such a great start and has been productive in catches and receptions each year. Heís carried the football, thrown the football. He's done it all there. Heís a competitive, strong football player, so itís a good fit for us and where we are right now moving forward." I thought he was 1st Round talent at Pitt.

He steps right into the Mohamed Sanu role, only Boyd is much faster. "I donít want to compare Mo to him or vice versa," Zampese said. "The versatility is the similarity. The variety of things he is capable of doing. It opens up some options for us. You guys have seen what our creative minds can come up with those kinds of players." He plays underneath like Sanu, but also has that knack for getting open deep.

He is a plug and play impact player. "He does a great job of using his body to create separation," Lewis said. "Heís great with the ball in his hands. He seems to understand the game very well. Heís been a returner over there. Weíve got to get him better at some of that, catching the football as a returner and so forth, but that is something he has done and something he should be good at with his ability to run the ball." He can make plays at different positions all over the feild.

They got the ball in his hands every way imaginable on offense. "They did more check-downs and end-arounds and things like that this year," Lewis said. "I think he averaged something like eight or nine yards a carry or something phenomenal like that, so he got an opportunity to carry the football. You couldnít watch a game where he wasnít getting the ball some way this year. And I think all college receivers kind of play that way; the quarterbacks change a little bit more frequently than most NFL clubs." Plus, he has great special teams value. 

He also is terrific in the backfield with the ball in his hands. "I think he has an opportunity to make plays with the ball in his hands, thereís no question. and heís a strong runner;" Lewis said. "Those are things that youíve got to be able to do at this level. Heís got to complement the other guys in the offense and I think heíll do a really good job with that and give us another kind of weapon, which is good." he will be a perfect compliment to Green.

The Player: 9/24 2016 NFL Draft: Tyler Boyd WR.

The Reason: This would be the perfect fit for Boyd. "The thing that stuck out to me was his football instincts," Zampese said. "His ability to separate sideways and laterally from defenders. You get a chance to see him do a lot of different things because they got it to him in a lot of different ways: handing it, throwing it. He threw the ball. You got to see everything that the guy has, which is nice to know. Sometimes you donít get to see all those things. So we have a good idea of what he is. We have a pretty good idea of where we can take him. Heís certainly not a finished product, but heís ours and we like him. Weíre going to drag him and push him and make him compete, and drive him to where we think he can be." He is a great jack of all trades to have in an offense.

He will have a veteran QB with nice accuracy and touch throwing to him. "If you watch a variety of games for him, you get the flavor," the WR coach Urban said. "There were games when he played outside a lot, inside a lot. They did a lot of bringing him back in the backfield and handing the ball off to him. Lap, you referenced Sanu. Thereís Sanu-esque things in the versatility he provides. The one thing we take great pride in is attracting football players. You can poke holes at a 40 time, but we think we got a good football player, and weíre going to find ways to take advantage of his skill set. We think its a good fit." They had to get some receivers to help Dalton after losing essentially two starters.

He has a true Number One WR on the other side to take the coverage off of him. "He struck me as a guy that can play slot early, and learn the outside spot and be productive out there as we go. Heís played a lot of slot. Heís very familiar with where the bodies are coming from down in there. And heís got good vision, football IQ and instincts to avoid and get up field," Zampese said. Then continued "It looks like he does on film. You can tell when you talk to him too. Heís a competitive guy. You can see when the ballís in his hands, heís doing everything he can to get up field. He likes making people miss, likes contact. Weíre really excited about having him." He has everything set up for him to succeed here.