2015 NFL Draft Stock – Pre-Combine I

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

By Charlie Campbell.
Send Charlie an e-mail here: [email protected]
Follow Charlie on Twitter @draftcampbell for updates.

2015 NFL Draft Stock Up

Jordan Phillips, DT, Oklahoma
Over the past few weeks, there has been momentum and buzz for Phillips to be a first-round pick or go early in the second round. Washington’s Danny Shelton is the favorite to be the first nose tackle selected, but after Shelton, it is pretty wide open. Phillips (6-6, 334) is bigger than Florida State’s Eddie Goldman (6-4, 313) or Texas’ Malcom Brown (6-4, 305) and Phillips is a more natural fit as a 3-4 nose tackle. It is an important position for that scheme and a tough commodity to find.

While he is a huge lineman, Phillips also has a good burst for his size. He totaled 39 tackles, seven tackles for a loss, two sacks, and one pass batted in 2014. There are a lot of 3-4 defenses picking in the back half of the first round, so Phillips could end up having his name called on Thursday night.

Eli Harold, DE/OLB, Virginia
The NFL is always looking for pass-rushers, and in the 2015 NFL Draft, there could be an early run on edge defenders with prospects like Randy Gregory, Shane Ray and Dante Fowler Jr. There are a lot of teams picking in the back half of the first round of the 2015 NFL Draft that could use a pass-rusher and Harold could be a fit for a 4-3 or 3-4 defense. If Harold has a good performance at the Combine, he could end up being a late first-round pick.

Cameron Erving, OL, Florida State
As you can see from Walt’s mock, there is buzz about Erving being a Thursday night pick. What really helps Erving’s draft stock is the ability to possibly play any position on the offensive line. He proved that during his senior campaign when he made an impressive midseason switch from left tackle to center. Erving was even better in the middle than he was on the edge.

For the NFL, playing center, guard, or right tackle could be his best fit. However, teams love that Erving has experience at left tackle and could move there if an injury occurred. If he doesn’t win a starting job immediately, his flexibility will automatically make him a valuable backup on game days at the very least.

Tyler Lockett, WR, Kansas State
Lockett was a play-maker for the Wildcats throughout his career. He was a deep-threat receiver who also made plays on special teams. At the Senior Bowl, Lockett (5-11, 175) showed that he is a polished receiver who is ready to compete at the next level.

If Lockett could add some weight to his frame while maintaing his speed, that could allow him to line up on the outside and not be relegated to slot receiver duties. Still, Lockett could be a dangerous weapon for an NFL offense and may end up going in the third round of the 2015 NFL Draft.

Za’Darius Smith, DE, Kentucky
Smith didn’t have a standout senior season, and teammate Bud Dupree got the majority of attention. As a potential first-rounder, it is easy to understand why Dupree was the focus.

However, Smith had two strong weeks of practice at both the East-West Shrine and Senior Bowl. He did well in the pass-rushing one-on-ones and showed a nice combination of speed and strength. Entering those all-star games, Smith was more of a third-day prospect, but after those two weeks, he could end up sneaking into Round 3.

Ladarius Gunter, CB, Miami
There are still a lot of teams that want big press-man corners to mimic what the Seahawks have done with their large corners. The 6-foot-1, 200-pounder has good size and length, and benfits from that preference trend.

Gunter totaled 28 tackles with six passes broken up and two interceptions in 2014. At the Senior Bowl, He looked faster and more athletic than expected while doing a nice job of running with receivers downfield. Gunter could end up getting consideration late on the second day of the 2015 NFL Draft.

2015 NFL Draft Stock Down

T.J. Clemmings, OT, Pittsburgh
WalterFootball.com reached out to sources from five different teams, and they all had Clemmings grading out after the first round of the 2015 NFL Draft. The 6-foot-4, 307-pounder didn’t impress evaluators at the Senior Bowl as he had some struggles in the pass-blocking one-on-ones. Clemmings showed that he is raw and in need of significant development to handle NFL pass-rushers. That is understandable considering Clemmings started out his collegiate career on the defensive line before switching to right tackle as a junior. Teams feel that Clemmings has a skill set to work with, but is too much of a gamble to take with a first-round pick. They don’t feel that he’s worthy of that high of a draft grade.

Deontay Greenberry, WR, Houston
It hurts Greenberry’s draft stock that he didn’t receive a Combine invite. That takes an away an opportunity for him to impress all 32 general managers and head coaches, as there won’t be anywhere near that level of attendance for Houston’s pro day. Even if the Combine didn’t go well for Greenberry, he would have had his pro day to rebound. The regional Combines don’t get significant attendance from NFL scouts and executives either. Now, everything is pinned on Greenberry’s pro day for him to time well in the 40 and perform well on his routes.

Josh Harper, WR, California
Harper is another receiver who is hurt by not getting a Combine invite. He had solid production for California over the past two season. Harper put up 90 receptions for 1,097 yards and seven touchdowns in 2014. A year earlier, he made 79 receptions for 1,011 yards with 13 touchdowns.

Harper (6-1, 285) could have used a strong Combine to stand out in a crowded receiver class. Not getting an invite could hurt his chances of being a second-day pick in the 2015 NFL Draft.

Landon Collins, S, Alabama
Earlier in the draft process, Collins was viewed as a potential top-10 pick. However, as teams have started to grade and rank players on their draft boards, Collins looks more likely to be selected in the middle or back half of the first round. The reason is he has some limitations in pass coverage and is more of a physical, in-the-box safety. Teams are valuing safeties who can cover tight ends and slot receivers over physical, run-stuffing safeties. Thus, Collins needs a great Combine where he shows speed and fluid athleticism to convince teams he can possibly develop coverage skills with NFL coaching.

Fantasy Football Rankings - May 23

2025 NFL Mock Draft - May 21

NFL Power Rankings - Feb. 22

NFL Picks - Feb. 12