You won’t convince me there is a better day of the year than Thanksgiving. Food, family and football is as good as it gets and Thanksgiving is centered around those things. I hope you enjoy an amazing day enjoying the greatness of the occasion.
I hope that this column has become a staple for you each week, but just in case you are new, 6-Pack Thursday is my weekly brain dump on six football-related things that involve the NFL, College Football or NFL Draft.
Let’s crack this thing open!
Deionte Thompson – Potatoes
When I sat down to pen this week’s 6-Pack, I wanted the entire piece to be about comparing 2019 NFL Draft Prospects to Thanksgiving foods but I quickly realized I wasn’t Trevor Sikkema or Ben Solak have more creativity in their pinky that I do overall so I quickly shifted gears.
With that said, there was one that I liked: Alabama S Deionte Thompson to Potatoes.
Thompson’s versatility is so exciting. He can play single high safety, split zones, in the box, man coverage and is a great tackler. He has the processing skills, range and ball skills to be a ballhawk on the back end and create turnovers. His skill set will allow so much scheme multiplicity to his defense because of the roles he can fill.
How many gazillion ways can potatoes be prepared? Potatoes are among the most versatile foods on the planet. Mashed Potatoes, baked potatoes, french fries, potatoe chips, potato salad – the list is endless. And then potatoes can be used as the foundation to mix foods together making it arguably the most versatile food of all-time.
Thompson is the potatoes of NFL Draft prospects. And now you can plainly see why I scraped the idea…
Hollywood Brown is Thankful for Tyreek Hill
The NFL is a copycat league and the production and utilization of Tyreek Hill in Kansas City is going to open so many doors for smurf wide receivers. Hill is 5-foot-8 and 185 pounds with 4.29 speed. While speed always gets the NFL’s attention, a diminutive frame like Hill’s is usually a turnoff.
Oklahoma WR Marquise Brown is listed at a very generous 5-foot-10 and 168 pounds, but I am willing to bet his lack of size will be overlooked in the Draft is he tests anywhere near Hill.
Brown’s going to carry the “next Tyreek hill” label and he’s going to make a lot of money because of it. Now let’s just hope Brown has a coach like Andy Reid that will know how to use him.
Josh Allen’s Ceiling
I filed my formal film on Kentucky EDGE Josh Allen recently and wow is he an exciting prospect. His burst, bend and motor off the edge has lead to a dominant season running circles around SEC offensive tackles. Logging 17.5 tackles for loss and 13 sacks already this season, Allen is living in the backfield.
And while Allen is a surefire first-round prospect, it’s exciting to think of how much upside he has given the growth areas that exist in his game. Allen is still developing his vision to read the sets of blockers. For as good as his production has been, there was plenty of meat left on the bone because Allen missed opportunities to attack blockers where they are vulnerable based on how they set. Allen rarely uses a bull rush or inside move and is still developing secondary hand counters.
Allen has illustrated considerable growth as a senior but there is still more to be done and that is a very good thing. He’s already a terrific prospect and considering how much better he can become under an NFL defensive line coach is scary.
Amani Oruwariye Checks So Many Boxes
Another high profile film evaluation I recently filed is Penn State CB Amani Oruwariye and I like what I see. In terms of size, length, physicality, coverage awareness, pattern matching ability, body control and ball skills, Oruwariye checks the boxes.
In an NFL where offenses flex out tight ends and feature alpha receivers, Oruwariye can be that neutralizer. I love his upside as a press and zone corner. His coverage spacing and route awareness is exceptional. How well he controls his body for his size combined with excellent foot speed has me highly intrigued.
This is the player many wanted Carlton Davis and Isaiah Oliver to be last year. As long as he tests well, Oruwariye should easily picked in the late first/early second round.
I’m not trying get all cheesy but it’s Thanksgiving and I wanted to express my sincere gratitude for your readership and hopefully listenership on the Draft Dudes Podcast. Without your support, I don’t have this job and I’m just a guy who likes to talk about football.
I’m blown away by how many people consume my content and I’m forever grateful that I get to do this work. We have so many big plans here at TDN, many of which you will see in the near future. Here’s to the most comprehensive NFL Draft coverage the world has ever seen!
Best Player I Saw This Week – Anthony McFarland
Maryland Redshirt Freshman running back Anthony McFarland TORCHED the Ohio Sate Buckeye’s defense last Saturday to the tune of 298 rushing yards on 21 carries and 2 touchdowns. THAT’S AN AVERAGE OF 14.2 YARDS PER CARRY ON 21 ATTEMPTS AGAINST OHIO STATE! [emphasis added]
McFarland’s performance came on the heels of a 220-yard rushing performance against Indiana the week prior. His 298-yard outing against Ohio State was the second most rushing yards in a single game in Maryland history behind LaMont Jordan’s 306 against Virginia in 1999.
McFarland, a four-star recruit, now has 1,022 yards on 125 carries (8.2 average) on the season. He was unstoppable against Ohio State and the best player I watched in last week’s action.