I wonder what Mel Kiper Jr. does every year after the end of the NFL Draft? Does he hibernate for three months? Does he begin preparing his hair or next years draft?
A Calvert Hall alum, Mel has made the NFL Draft a major sporting event and a topic of discussion 365 days a year. With only 362 days until the 2010 NFL Draft I figured it is time to unveil my big board of the top 10 prospects for next years draft.
1. Sam Bradford*, Quarterback, Oklahoma
There would have been a real debate for Detroit if Bradford had left after his Redshirt Sophomore year as to whom to select with the #1 overall pick. Bradford had a simply astonishing 2008 season winning the Heisman and commanding the best offense the nation has ever seen. Bradford threw for 4,720 yards with fifty touchdowns to only eight picks and completing 67.9% of his passes. Bradford is surprisingly agile with excellent footwork and has prototypical NFL Quarterback size at 6-4 214 pounds.
2. Carlos Dunlap*, Defensive End, Florida
In his sophomore year Dunlap dominated the SEC with 9.5 sacks and 13.5 tackle for loss. At 6-6 290 pounds Dunlap has outstanding size and bulk and will have three years as a starter against top tier talent in the SEC going into the 2010 NFL Draft. Along with his great size Dunlap is an extremely athletic Defensive End who is projected to run the forty in the 4.7 range. Dunlap is drawing major comparisons to the Houston Texans Mario Williams who went #1 overall in the 2006 NFL Draft.
3. Taylor Mays, Safety, USC
A 6-4 225 pound Safety Mays would have been a top 10 pick if he came out after his junior season Mays is built like a Linebacker but is expected to possibly run in the sub 4.3 range at the combine. Taylor will have been a four year starter entering the 2010 Draft on a superb USC defense. During his junior season Mays had 53 tackles including 2 for loss and a team-high nine pass deflections. After seeing no safety go in the 2009 Draft there could be as many as 4 taken in the first round next year.
4. Russell Okung, Offensive Tackle, Oklahoma State
Okung will be a four year starter going into the NFL Draft. Okung shutdown 2009 top fifteen pick Brian Orakpo during his junior season. Okung has great size at 6-5 300 pounds and plays with great leverage and balance. Since entering the starting lineup as a true freshman he has started 34 straight games.
5. Matt Herzlich, Outside Linebacker, Boston College
Herzlich was the ACC Defensive Player of the Year during his junior season. He had 98 tackles, nine tackles for loss, 2.5 sacks, and seven passes broken up. The most impressive stat from Herzlich dominate 2008 were his seven interceptions, two of which he took to the house. Herzlich is a versatile player who is a capable pass rusher and also excels in pass coverage. As for his consistency Herzlich had 97 tackles in his sophomore season with twelve tackles for loss. Herzlich is very agile and athletic with excellent size and bulk at 6-4 238 pounds. Matt is very durable and has started every game at B.C. since his sophomore season.
6. Ndamukong Suh, Defensive Tackle, Nebraska
Suh is a monster up front at 6-4 305 pounds; he posses the best combination of size and athleticism of any draft eligible player in the 2010 draft. In Suh’s junior season he had 76 tackles, 16.5 tackles for loss, and 7.5 sacks. Suh also contributed two blocked kicks and returned two interceptions for touchdowns. Suh is drawing some scary comparisons to the Ravens Haloti Ngata with more pass rush ability.
7. Dez Bryant*, Wide Receiver, Oklahoma State
Bryant has elite size for a #1 receiver at 6-2 210 pounds. As a true sophomore Bryant caught 87 passes, for 1.480 yards and 19 touchdowns. Bryant also has great value in the return game as he returned to punts to the house. Bryant has outstanding leaping ability and the potential to be an elite red zone threat at the next level. Bryant is an exceptional talent who is only going to get better.
8. Jermaine Gresham, Tight End, Oklahoma
Gresham is best Tight End to enter the NFL Draft in a long time. Jermaine is a huge player at 6-6 250 pounds who will make an excellent red zone threat in the NFL. During his junior season Gresham caught 58 passes for 888 yards and 12 touchdowns. Jermaine has an unreal 23 touchdowns in the past two seasons.
9. Brandon Spikes, Inside Linebacker, Florida
Spikes is a winner plain and simple; he has started on two BCS Championship winning teams in his three seasons at Gainesville. In his junior season Spikes tallied 87 tackles, eight tackles for loss, two sacks, and four picks including two he ran back for touchdowns. In his sophomore season Brandon had an unbelievable 131 tackles. Spikes has great instincts and reacts as quickly as any player I have ever seen. At 6-4 244 pounds Brandon plays with great athleticism and is equally talented at playing the pass and the run.
10. Eric Berry*, Safety, Tennessee
Berry is one of the most talented ball hawking safeties coming out of college in a long time. Berry was an elite playmaker as a true sophomore with 72 tackles, 8.5 tackles for loss, six passes broken up, three sacks, and seven interceptions with two returned for touchdowns. A first team All American selection as a sophomore Berry could be a Pro Bowler in year one with his amazing combination of size and speed. In his two seasons with the Vols Berry twelve interceptions.
*=Junior going into 2010 season