Monday morning series to get your week started off right! Each week I take a look at five prospects who elevated their stock with a fine performance during the past weekend’s games, and five who struggled through disappointing showings on Saturday.
1. Quinnen Williams, IDL, Alabama
Can your stock elevate when you were already a top three player in the class? Yes, because this was Williams’ biggest test of the season, and it might also have been his best performance.
The stat line of 2.5 sacks and three tackles-for-loss is impressive enough, but that only begins to tell the story of Williams’ dominance of LSU’s offensive line. He threw blockers around like rag dolls, held the point of attack only to shed blocks for ten stops around the line of scrimmage and pursued plays to the boundary like a linebacker. Williams is a marvel to behold on the football field, and a surefire star in the NFL.
2. Trayveon Williams, RB, Texas A&M
Williams may be small (5-foot-9, 200 pounds), but a scheme change and newfound confidence as a runner have him playing much bigger than his listed size. Williams will never be a true tackle-breaker, but he’s been able to slip low contact more effectively this season, showing good balance and the burst he seemed to lack a year ago.
107 yards rushing and two touchdowns on 17 carries was impressive enough, but Williams was even more dynamic in space as a receiver, catching five passes for 75 yards. He’s a legit three-down threat on his way to a 1,000-yard season in College Station.
3. N’Keal Harry, WR, Arizona State
I have some questions about Harry, but what a performance he put on this weekend. Nine catches for 161 yards and three touchdowns against a stout Utah secondary is a monster stat line, and the tape is even more impressive. Harry caught everything thrown his way, including back-shoulder grabs, unreal YAC plays and more. He’s fun to watch, I just hope he tests well enough to get me fully on board in Indy.
— Greg Brandt (@devywarehouse) November 3, 2018
4. David Long, CB, Michigan
The whole Wolverines defense could probably find a spot on this list, but Long in particular stood out due to his coverage prowess. Penn State offers a host of future high draft picks at wide receiver, yet they managed just 118 yards passing due to the brilliance of Michigan’s cover unit. Long’s mid-fourth quarter interception led to Michigan’s final score of the game, putting the finishing touches on his defensive clinic in the secondary.
5. Chase Claypool, WR, Notre Dame
Claypool is a raw talent who has generated some buzz due to his size, speed and athleticism at Notre Dame, but has never really produced until Saturday. With the Fighting Irish desperately in need of an offensive spark due to their struggles to run the football, Claypool came alive with the second 100-yard performance of his three-year career.
The junior’s 8-catch, 130-yard day was his first time over the century mark this season, and only the second game of his collegiate life over 70 yards in a single game. Claypool’s raw traits scream draftable prospect, but until Saturday night, there had never been much on tape to back it up. If he can close out the season on a high note, the 6-foot-3, 228-pound wideout could move up boards quickly.
1. Josh Allen, EDGE, Kentucky
Allen is still one of the fastest-rising players in the country, but Georgia was likely his stiffest test of the season, and they kept him off the quarterback entirely. No hurries and no sacks for Allen, largely due to the fact that the Bulldogs’ tackles set deep on him and took away his edge rush. Allen will need to develop inside counters and be a little bit more manipulative as a rusher if he wants to have the same success in the NFL that he has had during his senior year.
2. Garrett Brumfield, IOL, LSU
I get it. Coming off of injury to face the best interior defensive lineman in college football is not anyone’s idea of a good time, but Brumfield got worked by Quinnen Williams most of the night on Saturday. Unsure if it was health-related or not, but Brumfield was eventually taken out of the game temporarily, although he returned when his replacement fared no better. Like it or not, Williams represents NFL talent, and Brumfield struggled to slow him down.
3. Benny Snell, RB, Kentucky
It is heresy to say anything negative about a runner who plays as hard as Benny Snell, I get that. And he has a place in the NFL for sure. But his style of running is brutal on his body, his athleticism is not a strength and he lacks the burst to win the edge on a consistent basis, or exploit tight creases up front.
Simply put, Snell is a true bulldozer in a league looking for backs that can play in space, operate as receivers as much as runners and turn light box runs into chunk plays. Snell will have a role in an NFL offense, but I can’t see the junior being highly valued if he declares, and plowing into Georgia’s front with little creativity or success on Saturday did nothing to change my mind.
4. Vosean Joseph, LB, Florida
Joseph has been stock up most of the season for Florida, but Saturday revealed a few weaknesses in his game too. He’s a volatile player who is still mastering the mental processing aspects of his position, blowing one coverage that resulted in a Missouri touchdown. Joseph will also miss some tackles due to an overaggressive nature, and could benefit from a return to school to sharpen his skills despite his top-notch upside.
5. Greedy Williams, CB, LSU
The biggest test of Greedy Williams season did not go the way he hoped it would. Against Alabama’s host of talented pass catchers, Williams was beaten off the line of scrimmage consistently and failed to finish reps where he had tight coverage. He got grabby down the field and was beaten vertically on a couple of Tua overthrows that could have made his numbers look worse.
The worst part however may have been Williams’ effort. He seemed to become visibly dejected as the game went on and showed little desire to finish plays. It showed up on tape a couple times last year as well, and will undoubtedly become a talking point in his evaluation.
Ok Greedy gets beat on the slant. Not sure how I feel about the effort towards the end. pic.twitter.com/hOYqNZhHpz
— CrockTIME (@eric_crocker) November 4, 2018