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Monday, April 8, 2013
RN Top 10: Dallas NFTC

By Sam Khan Jr.

The RN Top 10 will appear throughout the camp and combine season and rank prospects based strictly on their on-field performance at that particular event. It does not reflect what their overall prospect ranking will be when the 2014 rankings are unveiled this spring.

ALLEN, Texas -- There were more than 300 players present at the Dallas NFTC on Sunday, and the roster was stacked with big-time players. At the end of the camp, seven players earned invitations to The Opening in Beaverton, Ore., and several others took home positional MVP awards.

10. K.D. Cannon
Mount Pleasant (Texas) High School | WR | 5-10, 163

Cannon's an explosive receiver, one who some consider to be the best in the state. He showed off his skills, including his ability to separate from defensive backs, during 1-on-1 drills on Sunday.

The East Texas product has plenty of offers to choose from, with schools like Florida State, Notre Dame, Oklahoma, Texas and Texas A&M on his impressive offer list. But if his choice of attire on Sunday was any indication, Baylor has the inside track. He showed up to registration in a green Baylor warmup jacket. He attended the Bears' spring game on Saturday.

Tom Luginbill's take: "I think it’s just the versatility. I think he can play inside, outside. I think he can play wildcat quarterback. He can be that dynamic utility weapon. He can stretch the field and make plays in space. He could be an all-three-level guy. He can make the short grab and turn it 80 yards. He’s got the savvy to run routes in the intermediate levels and then he can stretch it."

9. Lorenzo Joe
Abilene (Texas) Cooper | WR | 6-2, 192

Joe, a quarterback for his high school team, will be a receiver in college, so that's the group he worked with at NFTC. Though not the favorite to win the award coming into the day (that would be Cannon), Joe hauled in pass after pass and performed well in 1-on-1 drills en route to winning the receiver MVP honors.

Joe is committed to Texas and is solid with his choice, stating as much after visiting Austin for the Longhorns'spring game recently.

Luginbill's take: "Lorenzo is one of those prospects that you get excited about because he has that combination of measurables that are outstanding. He’s tall and has a wide wingspan. But you are also having to make a serious projection because he’s playing quarterback for his high school team. So you are making some assumptions based on his raw athleticism that you think will pan out, but you don’t know for sure until he’s at the wide receiver position. What he is going to need to do is learn the little nuances of the wide receiver position. He is very, very gifted."

Lorenzo Joe
Texas commit Lorenzo Joe won wide receiver MVP honors at Sunday's Dallas NFTC.
8. David Cornwell
Norman (Okla.) North | QB | 6-5, 235

It wasn't hard to pick out Cornwall from the crowd given his size, but he has skills to go with it. He put in strong work during the Elite 11 regionals on Saturday at Valley Ranch and followed it up with another good day on Sunday. His weekend earned him an invitation to the Elite 11 finals in Oregon, the first one this year to pick up an invite.

Cornwell has offers from Alabama, Auburn, Oklahoma State, Tennessee and Virginia Tech, just to name a few. He has been to Alabama twice this year, once for a junior day and once last month for a spring practice.

Luginbill's take: "Big, strong-armed and physically superior to others in this class. Possesses the size and athleticism to surprise you when things break down. In what may be a down year to some degree at QB, it is easy to see why Cornwell is high on most college programs' boards."

7. Jacob Bragg
Nacogdoches (Texas) High School | OG | 6-4, 308

While tackles often get most of the love when it comes to offensive linemen, it was Bragg -- a guard -- who shined brightest among the big guys. The 2014 prospect had a great day on Saturday with a 97 SPARQ rating then followed it up on Sunday by winning the offensive line MVP award at the NFTC.

Bragg has two FBS offers currently: Louisiana Tech and Kansas. He visited Oklahoma in the fall and Texas earlier this year, so expect things to pick up for the East Texas prospect moving forward.

Luginbill's take: "He is a guy that will likely see an uptick in his recruitment after the spring evaluation period. Performance was one that will steer you to study more on tape. Likely a guy that will see significant mid-major attention."

Jacob Bragg
Expect the recruitment of Jacob Bragg, who only has offers from Kansas and Louisiana Tech, to pick up after his NFTC showing.
6. Edward Paris Jr.
Arlington (Texas) Timberview | S | 6-1, 195

Defensive back seems to be the stacked position in Texas in the 2014 class, and the group performing on Sunday did nothing to disprove that. Paris was among the players who excelled, showing off his cover skills and earning an invite to The Opening with his performance.

Paris is committed to LSU, making his pledge in February. He appears to be solid with that commitment, donning some purple-and-gold shorts on Sunday and even making sure to have a private conversation after the NFTC with ESPN Watch List safety Jamal Adams, who just picked up an LSU offer himself, in hopes of bringing him along.

Luginbill's take: "Ed Paris and Jamal Adams are very similar in terms of physical measurables. They are physical, big and rangy. Adams is probably a better player in space right now than Paris. I’m not so sure Paris won’t develop into a weakside linebacker, a walk-down-into-the-box type of strong safety. Both are very impressive."

5. Solomon Thomas
Coppell (Texas) High School | DE | 6-3, 265

Thomas is big and explosive, and he showed as much during 1-on-1s against offensive linemen. During one matchup, he blew right by an offensive tackle for what would have been an easy sack. He earned an invite to The Opening with his showing and was the defensive lineman MVP of the NFTC.

Thomas holds offers from the likes of Alabama, LSU, Michigan, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Stanford, Texas,
Texas A&M, USC and many more. He is a big-time 2014 target for both Oklahoma and Texas.

Luginbill's take: "In this group, he stood out physically -- good hand placement, technician and plays with pad level. Looks like he has trimmed down some, too."

4. Malachi Dupre
River Ridge (La.) John Curtis | WR | 6-3, 190

Dupre is tall and can really go up and get the football. He showed as much during a 1-on-1 with highly touted corner Tony Brown, reaching high into the sky to haul down a pass on a comeback route. His overall performance earned him an invite to The Opening.

That size and athleticism has made him a highly-sought-after prospect with a laundry list of offers from major programs like Auburn, Florida State, LSU, Michigan, Notre Dame and Texas A&M, just to name a few.

Solomon Thomas
An explosive defensive end, Thomas showed the skills that have led to offers from schools such as Alabama, LSU, Michigan, Ohio State and many more.
Luginbill's take: "Very intriguing guy. Loads of talent, good size, long, runs really well. He’s at the detriment of running in a veer offense, so he literally might get 20 balls a year thrown his way. So he is behind in a sense of playing in a sophisticated pass offense but he’s ahead of the curve because of his size and speed."

3. Jamal Adams
Lewisville (Texas) Hebron | S | 6-0, 199

Ask coaches who were at the NFTC who some of the best players they saw were, and some of the same uniform numbers were blurted out: 102 and 108. Adams, who holds more than 20 offers, wore 102 (108 was cornerback Tony Brown). While he didn't win the defensive back MVP (that went to Brown), he showed his good instincts and physicality in 1-on-1s and did enough to earn himself an invite to The Opening.

Adams, who picked up an LSU offer over the weekend, says he'll narrow things down in the summer but a decision might not come until the fall. He recently visited Texas and is scheduled to be at Texas A&M's Maroon-and-White spring game on Saturday.

Luginbill's take: "Truly looks the part and has the movement skills necessary to play in space, coupled with the size to match up in the box as well as with backs and athletic tight ends."

2. Kavin Alexander
North Little Rock (Ark.) High School | RB | 5-9, 182

Talk about making a splash. Alexander, one of a handful of out-of-state prospects to make the trek to Texas for the NFTC, absolutely blew up over the weekend. On Saturday at the Dallas Nike Football SPARQ Combine, he posted the highest SPARQ rating of the day and second highest of all time, 148.17. That included a blazing-fast 4.36 40-yard dash and a 40.5-inch vertical jump.

On Sunday, he continued to show off his skills at the NFTC, earning himself a trip to The Opening. He doesn't have any offers but expect that to change.

Luginbill's take: "His SPARQ rating is off the charts with a 4.00 shuttle. Undersized and scrappy, he should now have a chance to shine with Altee Tenpenny now at Alabama."

1. Tony Brown
Beaumont (Texas) Ozen | CB | 6-0, 179

Brown is one of the most coveted recruits in the country and on Sunday, he showed why.

His speed is impressive, and it's easy to see why he's also a track star. When four of the fastest guys in attendance on Sunday -- including Brown -- went head-to-head in the 40-yard dash, Brown won and drew oohs and ahhs from the crowd, particularly when he turned his head toward his competitors in the final 10 yards.

Brown won defensive back MVP and an invite to The Opening. He's uncommitted, but has offers from plenty of power programs nationally, including Alabama, LSU, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Texas, Texas A&M and USC. He's in no rush to make a decision, however, focusing on track season for now.

Luginbill's take: "TB and Arrion Springs are very similar to each other both in speed, endurance, quickness and lateral movement. Both ran sub 4.4s. Two of the better corners in this class nationally."