- Mel Kiper Jr., Football analyst
This is a big week with a number of notable pro days. We saw the big storyline out of Notre Dame on Tuesday; USC has a pro day this week; and LSU is also significant given the number of players that program has in this draft. Recent workouts at Georgia have also shifted the board.
Below, notes on performance traits remain similar week to week so that you have a sense of each player, and I provide updates on players each week as things shift. Please also see my rankings of the top five draft prospects at every position. Juniors and draft-eligible sophomores are noted with an asterisk.
Sharrif Floyd *
In the discussion at No. 1. Matches exceptional power and leverage with strong hands and enough athleticism to be tough on even good tackles. He's also not yet 21. Could be great in a 3-4 or a 4-3 scheme. Made major strides as the season progressed, the improvement in part stemming from a positional change and consistently improving technique. Floyd can simply drive linemen into the backfield.
LAST WEEK: 1 | PLAYER CARD
Dee Milliner *
Not the top corner in some years but easily the top one this year. Has great burst and speed, so even if his backpedal needs work, he can turn and run with anybody, and he has time to fix minor technique flaws. A smart player, he has a sharp learning curve, and his raw football skills are exceptional. His physical prowess is a step above that of other corners.
LAST WEEK: 2 | PLAYER CARD
Huge rise this season. Has dispelled concerns about competition level as his physical profile and strengths as an athlete match his performance. Uses his length really well. Gets in a wide base, uses his arms to absorb pass-rushers and simply doesn't allow guys to get the edge on him. He often made it look easy in the MAC but also looked great when Central Michigan faced top competition.
LAST WEEK: 3 | PLAYER CARD
Luke Joeckel *
The tape does the talking. At his best, has the ability to just swallow up all kinds of pass-rushers, particularly those who try to beat him off the edge. More susceptible to those who counter inside. Has a ton of experience, starting on the left since his freshman season. He can really drive people in the run game, even if he gets questions on whether he's a big finisher there.
LAST WEEK: 4 | PLAYER CARD
No more questions about his future position. He can be a dynamic 3-4 outside linebacker. He showed elite speed for his size and alleviated questions about whether he can cover, even as he profiles as a very good pass-rusher. He went to Oregon with the possibility of playing offense (tight end) or defense but has emerged as an athletic, long-armed pass-rusher ready to make a difference.
LAST WEEK: 6 | PLAYER CARD
Mel Kiper ranks his top 25 prospects for the 2013 NFL draft. After a good pro day, West Virginia QB Geno Smith is back on the board.