Ha Ha Clinton Dix S Alabama #6
Size/Athleticism: Above average height for the position. Adequate overall build. Strong enough to bring down bigger ball carriers.
Coverage: Prototypical free safety. Frequently played the role of centerfielder in Alabama’s cover one sets. Does a nice job reading the quarterback and is capable of cover the deep portion of the field on his own when asked. Understands his assignments and rarely caught out of position. Rarely used in man coverage and inconsistent footwork when he did match up one on one. Easily forced into false steps, even against unathletic tight ends, when in man coverage.
Ball skills: Modest leaping ability. Shows inconsistent timing when going up to contest the pass in jump ball situations.
Run support: Diagnoses the run quickly and is quick to close. More of a pile-on tackler than a difference maker but is capable of plugging a hole and taking on a ball carrier head on. Inconsistent open field tackler. Does a nice job plugging holes at the line, but in the open field his footwork is slow and he whiffs on too many attempts. Takes proper angles.
Intangibles: Suspended for two games for taking a loan from a coach. Viewed as a quiet leader by the coaching staff.
Durability: No known issues.
Comments: Clinton-Dix is capable of coming in and starting immediately at free safety. He’s a prototypical centerfield who covers a lot of ground and can read the quarterback to put himself in position to make a play. There are some questions about his ability in man coverage and he’s inconsistent against the run, but for a team looking to fill a specific hole, he can make an immediate difference.
Andre Williams RB Boston College #44
Size/Athleticism: Well built. A tough between-the-tackles runner who can take a pounding. Adequate speed for the role he’ll play in an offense. Quick feet and shifty between the tackles.
Vision: Shows impressive vision between the tackles. Makes good decision in terms of when to put his head down and plow forward and when to bounce it outside.
Power: A true power runner. Can break tackles and also move the pile. When he lowers his pads, he’s tough to bring down and can run through defensive backs and smaller linebackers. Somewhat inconsistent with his pad level and stays too high sometimes.
Speed/Agility: Surprising speed and is capable of breaking off some longer runs once he gets to the open field. Shows a nice burst when he hits the hole. Quick footwork, but not enough to consistently make guys miss. He’s simply too big of a target to break free within tight spaces.
Passing Game: Used almost exclusively as a blocker on passing downs and did not catch a single pass in 2013. Poor awareness as a blocker. Late to react to blizting linebackers. Has potential to develop, but may be a liable in pass-pro early in career.
Intangibles: Took two year
Durability: Quite, hard working, leader by example. Praised by coaches for his work ethic.
Comments: Williams is a power runner but has just enough agility and burst to project as a potential starter at the next level. He’s far from a can’t-miss prospect and has plenty of tread already taken off his tires, but he is worth a look in the third or fourth round. The biggest knock against him right now is his lack of production on passing downs, where he offers almost nothing as a receiver and has been a liability at times in pass protection. It’s enough of an issue that it may prevent him from earning a starting job.
Terrance West RB Towson #28
Size/Athleticism: Well built. A bowling ball type who can push the pile. Decent athleticism with a quick burst in tight spaces.
Vision: Tends to put his head down and run straight ahead too often, especially against stronger opponents. Could develop more patience to allow things the develop in front of him.
Power: A downhill runner who appears to not trust his speed. Tries to run people over on the inside even when there is the potential for a lane on the outside. Keeps his legs moving and rarely gets stuffed. Does a nice job pushing the pile to pick up something if a running lane isn’t there. Below average ball security for a power running back (five fumbles as a junior).
Speed/Agility: A one-cut runner with limited ability to make guys miss. He can cut once to avoid contact from a lineman in the backfield, but he lacks the change-of-direction ability to put together multiple moves to break free. Lacks the speed to turn the corner and break off chunks of yardage.
Passing Game: Limited experience catching the ball out of the backfield but appears to have fairly soft hands. Small hands and short arms. Doesn’t provide a big target for the quarterback. Shows some pop as a blocker but lacks the strength to sustain.
Intangibles: Took two years off from football after high school. Making rare early jump to pros from FCS, but it’s a logical jump considering his age (23) and family situation (has a young son).
Durability: Missed four games with knee injury in 2012. 838 touches over last three seasons.
Comments: West is a classic one-cut runner who can be a quality second option in an offense. However, he’s limited athletically and probably isn’t capable of carrying the load at the next level. He reminds me of Tim Hightower, who was a serviceable power runner for a few years but never develop the explosive ability to take his game to the next level.
Tom Savage QB Pittsburgh #7
Size/Athleticism: Prototypical height and overall build. Strong enough to stand in the pocket and take a hit.
Arm strength/Accuracy: Elite arm strength which stands out above most of the other prospects in this class. Adequate accuracy on short and intermediate routes but loses his accuracy on the deep ball. Has a nice touch on his passes at all levels.
Footwork/Release: Strong overall fundamentals. Looks comfortable moving around the pocket. Climbs the pocket smoothly. Consistent balanced throwing motion. Transfers weight smoothly and cleanly. Adequate athleticism. Capable of
Decision making: Comfortable standing in the pocket. Patient letting the play develop. Doesn’t often force throws downfield and is willing to check down with its all the defense gives him. Might check down a little too often and could probably benefit from take a few more chances. Has a tendency to lock on to a receiver. Makes some poor decisions under pressure and needs to know when to simply hang on to the ball and take a sack.
Intangibles: Transferred from Rutgers to Arizona to Pittsburgh. Already 24 years old with very little experience. Made progress during senior year despite limited supporting cast.
Durability: Suffered a concussion in 2013. Also battled a rib injury during senior year.
Comments: Savage has obvious NFL tools but is still a developmental prospect. He played in 2009 at Rutgers but then barely saw the field until the 2013 season. He should not be viewed as a guy who can come in and start immediately, but it would be surprising if he doesn’t eventually find his way on to an NFL field. He definitely has starter potential and his success will be determined by how he develops the mental side of the game. All the physical tools are there, he simply needs to refine the decision-making process.
Phillip Gaines CB Rice #15
Size/Athleticism: Adequate height. Slightly underdeveloped frame and could add some weight. Long arms for his size. Ideal speed and agility. Can turn and run with any receiver and has the quick-twitch athleticism to stay with the quicker receivers underneath.
Coverage: Extremely confident in his coverage skills and it shows in his game. Very smooth in his backpedal and does a great job staying with his assignment while keeping an eye on the quarterback until it’s necessary for him to turn and run downfield. Plenty of experience in man to man and zone coverage.
Ball skills: Does a great job reading the quarterback and playing the ball. Turns himself into the receiver and consistently impact the play in 50/50 situations.
Run support: Willing to step up and closes quickly. Not a wrap-up tackler and lacks the strength to consistently makes plays even when he’s in position. Great range and can make plays in pursuit.
Intangibles: Suspended for 2013 season opener for violation of team rules.
Durability: Suffered a broken wrist in 2009 which was reinjured in 2012. Lean frame raises some long term durability concerns but started final 35 games of his career.
Comments: Gaines is a fluid cover corner who has the confidence to play up in press coverage despite limited physical strength. He does a great job reading the quarterback and reacting to the ball. He would be an ideal fit in a cover-two system and has the tools to start immediately.