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Steve Muench's Stock Report
Up: Michigan State RB Le'Veon Bell -- Bell rushed for 145 yards and a touchdown on 32 carries, caught two passes for 13 yards and even completed a 29-yard pass in Michigan State's 17-16 win over TCU in the Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl. The 242-pounder continued to make the most of the blocks he got from an average offensive line and picked up yards after contact when he didn't get a defined seam. Bell didn't show enough burst against the Horned Frogs to ease concerns about his initial quickness, but he flashed the ability to get outside and more than enough top-end speed when found a seam. The heavy workload (382 carries) he shouldered this season is a concern, but Bell rushed for a total of 732 yards over his last four games and it's highly unlikely he would carry the ball so often at the next level. In terms of the passing game, Bell has had a few drops and hasn't always separated from coverage as well as expected, but he can split out wide at times, has above-average receiving skills and holds up in protection. Bell is making a case for a solid second-round grade.
Down: N.C. State QB Mike Glennon -- Glennon threw for 383 yards and a touchdown in the Wolfpack's loss to Vanderbilt in the Music City Bowl, but he also threw three picks and appeared to press at times, especially in the first half when he threw two interceptions. On the first, Glennon threw downfield off his back foot and got caught locking on to his receiver. All the safety had to do was read Glennon's eyes and drift under the ball. The second pick is a product of the same bad habits. Glennon locked on once again, and tried to force a ball into coverage while pressure was preventing him from stepping into the throw. Glennon doesn't sidestep pressure well, and a third-quarter fumble was a result of him holding the ball too long. On his third interception, he was simply late on a fade route from the 25-yard line and the corner was able to settle under the ball. Glennon needed to show more poise, especially given that he threw two or more picks in five games this season, and his TD-to-INT ratio fell compared to last season. He has an early-second round grade at this point, but Glennon's lack of awareness and pocket presence, along with his limited athleticism, are going to come under scrutiny in the coming months.
Scouts Inc. Observation
Muench: Take a look at the top 10 quarterback ratings for players with 300 or more passing attempts this year. Seven of the 10 players on the list exhausted their college eligibility before jumping to the NFL. One of the three early entries is Green Bay's Aaron Rodgers, who left a year on the table in college but spent three seasons backing up Brett Favre before taking the reins for the Packers. The other two are Pittsburgh's Ben Roethlisberger and Washington rookie Robert Griffin III. And let's take it even a step further. The starting quarterback for seven of the last 10 Super Bowl champions stayed in school for their entire four years of eligibility. Rodgers and Roethlisberger (two SB titles) account for the other three. Griffin III and Indianapolis' Andrew Luck, who also declared early for the 2012 draft, as a junior, are both in a position to potentially buck that Super Bowl trend, but the numbers back up the assertion by former USC coach Pete Carroll that 2009 first-round pick Mark Sanchez should not have left the Trojans as a junior who had only 16 career starts to his credit. And before you argue that Matt Barkley should have entered the 2012 draft rather than coming back to USC for his senior season because his draft stock has taken a hit and Barkley has lost a lot of money, consider that the weaknesses Barkley showed on his college film this season would have been exposed even more starkly in the NFL.