Commentary

Pair of QBs moving up the board

Top 10 remains solid, but two debuts are part of the shuffling down below

Originally Published: January 18, 2012
By Todd McShay | Scouts Inc.

The deadline for eligible non-seniors to declare for the 2012 NFL draft has passed, so the overall prospect pool is set and we now have a bit more certainty at the top of the board. The top 10 prospects in my latest rankings remain unchanged, but there are significant changes down below.

It starts with a pair of Pac-12 players -- a strong-armed quarterback and an athletic defensive end -- making their top-32 debuts. Georgia DE/OLB Jarvis Jones leaves the board after returning to school, while Mississippi State DT Fletcher Cox is pushed out by the new arrivals.

Elsewhere, LSU DT Michael Brockers continues to shoot up the rankings and is now on the cusp of the top 10, and Stanford TE Coby Fleener moves up eight spots and is now the top-ranked tight end on the board. Finally, Texas AM QB Ryan Tannehill has cracked the top 20 despite a recent foot injury, thanks to impressive athleticism and huge upside.

Here's how the entire list breaks down at this point.


Big Board Bar

1
QB
6-4
235

Analysis: Finished his college career with a bang, showcasing his entire skill set while completing 27 of 31 passes for 347 yards and two scores in the Fiesta Bowl. Next stop, Indianapolis? Last week: 1

2
OT
6-7
295

Analysis: Kalil is clearly the top offensive lineman in the board, with his combination of light feet and good balance as a pass-blocker and the edge he flashes in the running game. He's ready to start from day one. Last week: 2

3
QB
6-1½
218

Analysis: The 2011 Heisman Trophy winner continues to rise. He won't pass Luck on my board, but Griffin's mobility, quick release and arm strength have helped him narrow the gap and create some intrigue as teams potentially jockey for a chance to select him, perhaps as high as No. 2 overall. Last week: 6

4
RB
5-11
224

Analysis: Richardson is clearly the top running back in the 2012 class -- and one of the highest-rated backs in recent years -- thanks to an elite combination of size, speed, power, balance and vision. Last week: 4

5
DE
6-6⅛
272

Analysis: There are questions about Coples' work ethic and motor, but his huge upside as a pass-rusher makes him a prospect whom teams will covet early in the first round. Last week: 5



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