Derrick Locke, Randall Cobb jumping out on film
To continue reading this article you must be an Insider
Steve Muench's Stock Report
Up: Notre Dame DT Ian Williams -- Williams isn't going to jump up a lot of boards following his Senior Bowl showing. He just doesn't have the initial burst or athletic ability to stand out in what is shaping up as a deep defensive tackle class. Still, he helped himself by showing the NFL brass in attendance that he has the low center of gravity, lower-body strength and resolve to anchor against double teams. His ability to keep blockers off linebackers could make him a steal for a base 4-3 defense looking for help at nose tackle in the mid-to-late round area.
Down: West Virginia RB Noel Devine -- Devine weighed in at 160 pounds at the Senior Bowl and his weight isn't the only concern about his game. His vision and power/balance between the tackles aren't great, either. He looked hesitant running inside and took some hits as a result, and while he caught the ball well and looked quick enough to develop into an effective change-of-pace back Devine's size hurt him at receiver, too. He's just 5-foot-7, and quarterbacks had a hard time finding him from within the pocket. Finally, Devine had problems staying healthy during the college season and he has to interview well to quiet concerns about his character. At this point, it's unlikely he comes off the board until at least the fourth round.
Kevin Weidl's Stock Report
Up: West Virginia LB J.T Thomas -- He's coming off a good week of practice at the Texas vs. Nation All-Star Game, where Thomas showed natural instincts, easy lateral movement and good athleticism and range. He finds the ball quickly and is a solid open-field tackler and can contribute on third down with his ability to cover underneath zones and match up with backs and tight ends in man coverage. He lacks ideal size and can get engulfed at the point of attack at times, but Thomas looks like a good fit at weakside linebacker in a 4-3 scheme, where he could be protected and allowed to run to the ball. Overall, Thomas has moved himself from a fringe pick to a mid-round possibility.
Down: Arizona DE Ricky Elmore -- His production in 2010 was impressive (13 tackles for loss, 11 sacks), but a lot of that was because of the attention fellow DE Brooks Reed received on the other side. Elmore plays with a great motor and chases the ball relentlessly but simply lacks the physical tools to be an impact NFL player. He is undersized and struggles to anchor. He does not show quick-twitch athleticism off the line and is a limited athlete who would struggle to transition to outside linebacker in a 3-4 scheme. At this point, Elmore is no better than a late-round prospect.
Video: Senior Bowl Standouts
Scouts Inc. Observations
Muench -- The Chicago Bears have a first-round pick for the first time since 2008 and are looking to add a player who can help them get over the hump and into the Super Bowl. However, finding market value in their areas of greatest need might not be easy. The Bears would like to get one of the top four offensive tackles on the board or top-ranked center Mike Pouncey, but all five will likely be gone when Chicago comes on the board at No. 29. There likely won't be a defensive tackle available who's worthy of that pick, either. That leaves wide receiver, where Maryland's Torrey Smith is an intriguing possibility. We have an early-second-round grade on Smith at this point, and he's a little raw as a route-runner but he has the blazing speed to run down QB Jay Cutler's deep ball and help open up the rest of the offense. Smith is expected to run a very fast 40-yard dash at the NFL combine, and assuming he does Chicago could make sense as a landing spot.
Weidl -- Colorado CB Jimmy Smith is shooting up the board and is now our No. 10 overall prospect, thanks to his size (6-2, 203), fluid hips and physical presence in press-man coverage. Patrick Peterson of LSU is our No. 3 prospect ,with his rare combination of size, athleticism and big-play ability, and Nebraska's Prince Amukamara is No. 8, thanks to instincts, awareness and anticipation. The rest of the class suddenly seems somewhat underwhelming. Florida junior CB Janoris Jenkins was a top-10 prospect at one time but chose to return to school, and Brandon Harris (Miami) and Aaron Williams (Texas) have a lot of potential but also have weaknesses that could very well drop them out of the first round. The wild card in the group is Virginia's Ras-I Dowling, whose 2009 film showed first-round talent but who missed much of 2010 with hamstring and ankle injuries. Dowling has good size and speed and he plays the ball well, so it will be interesting to see if he makes some headway as he gets back to 100 percent.