2014 NFL Draft Stock – Pre-Combine II



This new section highlights which players have improved or worsened their 2014 NFL Draft stock as the draft approaches.

By Charlie Campbell.
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2014 NFL Draft Stock Up

Khalil Mack, OLB, Buffalo
There has been a lot of buzz in recent weeks that Mack could be the second pass-rusher drafted after South Carolina’s Jadeveon Clowney. Mack had a tremendous college career with excellent production and improvement throughout his tenure. For example, Walt’s 2014 NFL Mock Draft has Mack going ahead of UCLA outside linebacker Anthony Barr. The vast majority of pundits have Mack rated in the top 10 of all prospects available, and some believe he could go in the top five. If Mack has a big Combine, he could put himself in play for teams like Jacksonville or Oakland if either decides against the available quarterbacks.

Bashuud Breeland, CB, Clemson
Among the flood of underclassmen that declared early for the 2014 NFL Draft were a number of surprise early entries, including Breeland. One can make the argument that he is one of many players who entered the 2014 NFL Draft when they shouldn’t have. Breeland, for instance, would have had a better shot at the first round if he had returned for his senior year.

In 2013, Breeland recorded 74 tackles, five tackles for a loss, 10 passes broken up and four interceptions. He improved as the season progressed. WalterFootball.com has heard that Breeland could rise in the months to come. Every year there is a corner who seems to have a late rise. Last year’s riser was D.J Hayden, and the year before it was Stephon Gilmore. Breeland looks like the early candidate for 2014.

Terrance West, RB, Towson
The 5-foot-11, 223-pound West has the size of an NFL back, and he dominated a weak level of competition in 2013. West had a massive year with 2,509 yards and 42 touchdowns. That season broke FCS records. He totaled 86 touchdowns and 4,584 yards over his collegiate career. This is a crowded running back class, but there is a real buzz about West, and it wouldn’t be surprising if he ends up getting second-day consideration.




Timmy Jernigan, DT, Florida State
While Pittsburgh defensive tackle Aaron Donald gave his stock a real boost with a dominating Senior Bowl performance, Florida State’s speedy three-technique has also been a player on the rise. Jernigan could end up going in the top half of the first round and being the first defensive tackle off the board. It will be interesting to see his Combine performance and specifically the weigh-in. If Jernigan is smaller than his listed measurements of 6-foot-2, 292-pounds, it could put a halt to his climb. However, if he meets those numbers or exceeds them, it could help him to be the first defensive tackle drafted.

Ja’Wuan James, OT, Tennessee
Unlike fellow offensive line-mate Antonio Richardson, James has been rising up draft projections. WalterFootball.com knows teams that felt James was really underrated in the leadup to the Senior Bowl and during the 2013 season. He was starting to impress in Mobile before pulling out with a minor knee injury. Some teams think that James has the athleticism to compete at left tackle in the NFL even though he played right tackle at Tennessee. James is being targeted by some teams on the second-day, but he may not make it to their second selection.




Brandin Cooks, WR, Oregon State
There are some mixed sentiments about Cooks, but he definitely has his fans. As Tavon Austin showed last year, you don’t have to be receiver with elite size and speed to be a first-round pick. Cooks (5-10, 186) was massively productive in 2013 with 128 receptions for 1,730 yards and 16 touchdowns. A slot receiver is basically a starter for the majority of teams, and Cooks is a dynamic weapon out of the slot that is difficult to cover. While he may not be a first-round pick, he could definitely go in the second round.

Lamarcus Joyner, CB, Florida State
Like Cooks, size is the only thing holding Joyner out of the first round. Joyner (5-8, 190) was a dynamic defender for Florida State who came up with a lot of clutch plays during the past few seasons and has a lot of good tape for NFL scouts. He was a tough and physical defender who played both safety and cornerback.

Joyner projects to being a versatile defender who could play nickel corner, which would pretty much make him a stater. If he were a few inches taller, he would be a first-round pick. Still, the demand for good nickels means Joyner should still go in the first few rounds.





2014 NFL Draft Stock Down

Anthony Barr, OLB, UCLA
In recent weeks, there have been reports that Barr is dropping. I don’t think he should, and other pundits still have Barr as a top-five talent, but some feel he could slide outside the forst 10 picks. Barr (6-4, 248) could use a strong Combine performance to help himself, plus it wouldn’t hurt Barr if showed some more strength to ease concerns about him holding up on the edge in run defense. There is a debate about Barr or Mack being the first outside linebacker off the board.




Antonio Richardson, OT, Tennessee
WalterFootball.com knows scouts who really like Tiny Richardson and don’t mind the fact that he seems to be falling down some boards. Those teams would love to get Richardson on the second day of the 2014 NFL Draft. It looks like they might get their wish as not everybody is projecting Richardson to go in the first round. Some question his strength and athleticism to be a left tackle in the NFL. Richardson needs a big Combine to get his stock turned around.

Austin Seferian-Jenkins, TE, Washington
Like Richardson, Seferian-Jenkins was once considered to be a secure first-round pick. However, many pundits are rating Seferian-Jenkins outside of the first round now. He had a disappointing 2013 season with less production and was suspended for the season opener. With the breakout years for Eric Ebron and Jace Amaro, Seferian-Jenkins is now the consensus third-rated tight end in the 2014 NFL Draft. Seferian-Jenkins could move to change that with a big Combine performance.









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