2015 NFL Draft Stock – Week 7

This new section highlights which players have improved or worsened their 2015 NFL Draft stock as the draft approaches.

By Charlie Campbell.
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2015 NFL Draft Stock Up

Cody Prewitt, S, Ole Miss
In the second quarter on the road at Texas A&M, Prewitt came through with pick-six, and after that play, the game was never within reach for the Aggies. It started when Cedric Ogbuehi was beaten by Robert Nkemdiche, who hit Kenny Hill and caused the ball sailed down field. Prewitt flew up to to pick off the pass and take it back 75 yards for a touchdown. He showed his reaction skills by tracking down the ball and weaving his way through tacklers on his return.

On the Aggies’ next possession, Prewitt made a nice play to attack the line of scrimmage and help tackle a back for no gain on a third-and-1. Throughout the night, Prewitt made a number of open-field tackles in zone coverage. He showed good tackling ability where if he didn’t make the stop, the receivers were going to break some long plays and potentially produce points. Prewitt totaled seven tackles.

In 2014, Prewitt has two interceptions, one pass broken up and 32 tackles. He’s shown versatility to play free or strong safety. Prewitt is a physical player and a good tackler who has coverage skills. He could be a quick starter in the NFL, and it wouldn’t be a surprise if he ends up being a top-50 selection.

Pharaoh Brown, TE, Oregon
The Ducks have been without a feature No. 1 receiver for Marcus Mariota this season, and one of the players who has come up with some clutch passes is Brown. He had his best game of the year against UCLA with five receptions for 84 yards and a touchdown.

Entering the season, many thought that Johnny Mundt would be the lead tight end for the Ducks, but Brown has outplayed Mundt. Brown has been the tight end who really has been a weapon in the middle of the field for Marcus Mariota. Brown (6-6, 250) has a nice combination of size and speed. He needs to improve his blocking, but if he maintains this level of play, his stock should rise.

Antwan Goodley, WR, Baylor
Baylor had a furious comeback to beat TCU, and Goodley was a huge reason why. He caught eight passes for 158 yards with two touchdowns. Goodley got his day started by burning a cornerback on a go route for a 66-yard touchdown. In the fourth quarter, Goodley hauled in a 28-yard touchdown where he went up to outfight the defensive back for the football. He also got open for other long passes, and while it could have been an even bigger game, but he still hauled in eight receptions for 158 yards and two touchdowns versus the Horned Frogs.

Goodley basically missed the first three games of the season, but since returning to the lineup, he’s been very productive for the Bears. Goodley has 18 receptions for 341 yards with three touchdowns on the year. The 5-foot-11, 220-pounder has the speed and strength to play on the outside in the NFL. If Goodley keeps dominating, he could go in the second round of the 2015 NFL Draft.

Melvin Gordon, RB, Wisconsin
Gordon could be on this list on a weekly basis, and once again, he was in dominant form over the weekend. Against Illinois, Gordon rolled the Illini with 27 carries for 175 yards and four touchdowns. He ripped off a 30-yard touchdown and a 46-yard run that showed his speed to dart through defenses. Illinois’ defenders were grasping at air throughout the day.

Halfway through the season, Gordon has become the first back in the nation to cross the 1,000-yard mark. He’s averaged 7.9 yards per carry for 1,046 yards and nine touchdowns in only six games. Gordon has six receptions for 27 yards, too. The 6-foot-1, 207-pounder could be the fastest back to enter the NFL since Chris Johnson in the 2008 NFL Draft. With his dominant junior season, Gordon is proving that he is worthy of going in the first round.

Eric Striker, OLB, Oklahoma
Even though Striker didn’t produce a big stat line, he was all over the field against Texas. He flew around the field and disrupted the Longhorns’ offense. Striker came close to a number of sacks before successfully burning the left tackle for a sack. At the start of the fourth quarter, Striker chased down running back Malcolm Brown on an option. It was a great play as Striker forced the pitch and made the tackle.

In 2014, Striker has 4.5 sacks, 28 tackles, 8.5 tackles for a loss and a pass broken up. He has played well in pass coverage this season, which was something he didn’t show last year. Of course, Striker continues to display his excellent pass-rushing skills. He still needs to add power for the NFL to help himself in the ground game, but he is a fast play-maker who could fit in a 4-3 or 3-4 defense.

Reese Dismukes, C, Auburn
Auburn lost to Mississippi State, but Dismukes really played well. He won his blocks all day as he opened holes in the ground game and did very well protecting quarterback Keith Marshall. Mississippi State has a tough front seven, and Dismukes was very impressive with how he constantly won his blocks.

The 6-foot-3, 295-pound Dismukes has athletic ability to go with excellent technique. He could fit in a zone-blocking system or a power-man scheme. Dismukes looks like a future starter in the NFL, and tapes like the one against the Mississippi State Bulldogs will make the argument for him to go in the top half of the second day of the 2015 NFL Draft.

Josh Harper, WR, Fresno State
Entering the season, everyone was expecting Harper to have a drop in production with Derek Carr no longer his quarterback. In the first six games of the year, that looked to be true as Harper didn’t have a 100-yard game and only two touchdowns. He came alive though against UNLV as he racked up 12 receptions for 187 yards and a touchdown.

In 2014, Harper has 47 receptions for 637 yards with three touchdowns. The 6-foot-1, 185-pounder plays bigger than his size and has quickness to get open. Harper is a sleeper receiver who could be a nice value on the second day of the 2015 NFL Draft.

Leonard Floyd, OLB, Georgia
The Georgia Bulldogs made a statement with their shutout of Missouri, and they were led by a fantastic game up front. Floyd was Georgia’s most disruptive defender as he caused a ton of havoc behind the line of scrimmage and supplied constant heat on the quarterback. After recording a lot of pressures, Floyd finally got home for a big play. He burned the tackle with a speed rush to get a strip sack on Maty Mauk just before halftime. Against Missouri, Floyd had three tackles with a sack and forced fumble. His stats don’t do justice to the amount of pressure he put on the quarterback.

Floyd is a natural pass-rusher. The 6-foot-4, 230-pound has a real burst off the snap with excellent agility to weave around blockers. This season, he has 24 tackles with five tackles for a loss, four sacks and two forced fumbles. For the NFL, Floyd needs to add power and strength to hold up in the ground game. The redshirt sophomore has the potential to be an early-round pick in the 2015 NFL Draft, but his stock could rise higher if he returns for his junior year and gets stronger before turning pro.

Honorable Mentions: Baylor running back Shock Linwood and Oregon cornerback Ifo Ekpre-Olomu.

2015 NFL Draft Stock Down

T.J. Yeldon, RB, Alabama
Not many people are talking about it, but Yeldon hasn’t been overly impressive in 2014 and really hasn’t looked like a first-round pick with the way the NFL is downgrading the running back position. Against Arkansas last Saturday, Yeldon ran for only 45 yards on 16 carries (2.8) average. Halfway through the season, the junior is not on pace for a 1,000-yard season either. Yeldon has averaged 4.9 yards per carry for 452 yards and two touchdowns. He has seven receptions for 98 yards and a score.

Yeldon hasn’t looked overly fast or physical this yea. Another issue that could hurt his draft grade is ball security. He had a lot of problems with fumbles in 2013. Yeldon needs to be reliable with holding onto the ball down the stretch. Given the way he has played in 2014, he looks more like a second-day pick and a player who has been somewhat overhyped because he plays at Alabama.

Cedric Reed, DE, Texas
After a huge 2013 season, many expected Reed to continue to play well this year and become a first-round pick. That hasn’t happened for the senior as he has only 1.5 sacks in 2014 with three tackles for a loss and 26 tackles. Against Oklahoma, Reed was a ghost for a lot of the game with the exception of one nice run stuff and chasing Trevor Knight out of bounds for a tackle for a loss. Overall, Reed has not been winning one-on-one blocks or putting much pressure on the quarterback. If Reed wants to be a top-100 selection in the 2015 NFL Draft, he needs to play a lot better in the second half of the season.

Dishonorable Mention: UCLA quarterback Brett Hundley and Texas A&M left tackle Cedric Ogbuehi.

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