2017 NFL Draft: College Football Game Recaps – Week 13

This section breaks down many college football games each week and highlights how 2017 NFL Draft Prospects have performed. Or look at the 2017 NFL Draft Stock page.

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

Florida State 30, Florida 13
  • As usual, there was some good NFL talent in this game. The most high-profile prospect was Seminoles junior running back Dalvin Cook. The Gators have a quality defense in the back end, but the Gators were without their starting linebackers of Jarrad Davis and Alex Anzalone, as well as safety Marcus Maye. Thus, Cook had his way with a depleted Gators defense.

    In the first quarter, Cook used his patience to set up a hole and then bolted into the end zone from 17 yards out. That set the tone for night, as Cook ripped through the Florida defense. He used his burst of speed, vision, balance, and patience to slash his way through the Gator defensive front. Cook totaled 153 yards on 26 carries with a touchdown. This tape will help him to be a first-round pick.

  • Florida State defensive end Demarcus Walker finished his career in impressive fashion. It was reminiscent of the season opener Walker had a huge second half to help the Seminoles pull off a huge comeback over Ole Miss. This time, a comeback wasn’t necessary, but like the season opener, Walker was tremendous in the final two quarters.

    Midway through the first quarter, Walker recovered a fumble in Gators territory. He was active in defending the run and putting heat on the quarterback. Walker then had a great play in run defense to get off a block and rip down the back for a short gain. In the fourth quarter, Walker lined up over the left guard and used speed to the inside. He powered through a running back to get a sack on a key third down. He then used a swim move to the inside on the right tackle to get another sack. He added another fumble recovery and started other sacks for the Seminoles.

    Walker is an early-round talent. Last year, teams were giving him a second-round grade. He has a shot at being a Thursday night pick, but he has a bit of a tweener body type for the NFL. His best fit might come as a 3-4 outside linebacker.

  • Sources told WalterFootball.com that Florida junior cornerbacks Quincy Wilson and Jalen Tabor would be entering the 2017 NFL Draft, so this was their final regular-season game for the Gators. Of the two, Wilson is held in higher regard by scouts, and he had the better game between them.

    Early on, Wilson blanketed a tight end to force a third-down incompletion. He also had a nice a pass breakup in the second quarter close to the end zone. Wilson is a big cornerback with speed and would fit best as a press-man corner. He could easily end up going in the top 20 picks of the 2017 NFL Draft. Wilson is only in his first year as a starter, so he could use some development for the NFL in terms of playing zone and off man coverage. Forcing him into a big role immediately could be a mistake.

    Tabor should have had a big game against Florida State. In the second quarter, Tabor dropped an easy interception on a pass that hit him right in the hands. He batted a pass away on third-and-goal to force a field goal, but the missed interception was very painful. Shortly later, he allowed a reception for about 13 yards, he then broke up a third-down pass to get his defense off the field. Tabor allowed some separation on some plays and showed that he can have issues with speed over the top. Tabor is best when plays are in front of him. His best role in the NFL could come as a big nickel.

  • Florida defensive tackle Caleb Brantley has been a beast this season, and he continued his impressive play against Florida State. He stuffed a number of runs well at the point of attack. In the second quarter, Brantley whipped the Seminoles center to rip down Cook for a loss. He then had a crushing hit on the quarterback that forced an incompletion. In the third quarter, Brantley fired through the line to get another tackle for a loss. Brantley is likely to be the second interior defensive lineman off the board in the 2017 NFL Draft after Alabama’s Jonathan Allen.

    Clemson 56, South Carolina 7
  • This was the final home game in the career of Clemson quarterback Deshaun Watson, as head coach Dabo Swinney already stated that Watson would be entering the 2017 NFL Draft. Watson went out with bang, as he led a blowout of the Tigers’ instate rival. Watson shredded a terrible Gamecocks team as he had receivers running wide open all night. He completed 26-of-32 passes for 347 yards with six touchdowns and one interception in a game of complete domination.

    On the first third-and-long of the game, Watson had Mike Williams open for a first down, and Watson just threw too high for an incompletion. He had another shot after South Carolina threw an interception. Watson launched a jump ball in the end zone and Williams made a leaping 34-yard touchdown catch over a cornerback. Shortly later, Watson hit Williams on a quick slant and Williams carried a defender on his back for eight yards before tumbling into the end zone for the score. It was a tremendous play by Williams. To end the first quarter, Watson threw another easy touchdown to tight end Jordan Leggett from 11 yards out.

    Watson threw a pass to Leggett in the second quarter, and he couldn’t make the catch. The ball was tipped around before being intercepted, but that pick wasn’t Watson’s fault. In the final seconds before the half, Watson had Leggett wide open in the end zone without a defender even 15 yards around him, but the bail sailed incomplete. On the next play, Watson hit Williams on a wide receiver screen, and he broke some tackles while running into the end zone from 16 yards out. Watson then lofted in a pass for a touchdown of about 15 yards on a wheel route. It was a little short, but still placed well enough to get the score.

    Overall, Watson played well, but this game did show the accuracy issues that have plagued him this season. His numbers are inflated by a lot of bubble screens, quick tosses, and other spread-option plays that don’t translate to the NFL. This game won’t change the mind of many teams in the league. WalterFootball.com knows multiple teams that have third-round grades on Watson. A couple of teams had him in the second round. However, quarterbacks are always in demand, and Watson is great off the field.

  • This was a very impressive game from Williams. He used his size to win on contested catches, ran through tacklers, was dynamic after the catch, and showed good hands. He totaled 100 yards on six receptions with three touchdowns. Williams isn’t a burner for the NFL, but he is a tall receiver who has enough quickness to get open in the short to intermediate part of the field. Downfield, he also can use his size to beat defensive backs. Williams is excellent in the red zone. This tape will help his bid to be a Thursday night selection.

  • Clemson running back Wayne Gallman left this game early after a hard hit, but Gallman still ran for 112 yards on 19 carries. In the second quarter, Gallman had a nice touchdown run using his speed to get to the corner and leapt over some trash before falling over the goal line for an 8-yard score. Gallman has taken a beating this year, but he has continued to produce. He could be a second-day pick if he enters the 2017 NFL Draft.

    USC 45, Notre Dame 27
  • The first 12 minutes of this game weren’t seen because of the Michigan versus Ohio State game going to double overtime. USC was leading 10-7 when ABC switched over.

  • Notre Dame quarterback DeShone Kizer could have been playing in his final collegiate game as Notre Dame is not bowl eligible. Thus, this could be the final tape that Kizer provides NFL evaluators before suiting up in the NFL. During the missing time, Kizer was three-for-three for 25 yards with a one-yard touchdown run.

    Kizer moved the ball with some excellent passes in the second quarter, but got lucky one pass wasn’t intercepted by Adoree’ Jackson, as it was a bad decision by Kizer to put the ball up for grabs and he was fortunate it fell incomplete. Kizer threw a strike to convert a third down, but the pass was dropped and the field goal was missed. Dropped passes and missed opportunities have been a reoccurring them for Kizer throughout this season.

    Shortly later, Kizer was lucky to avoid a fumble while getting sacked as the play was blown dead. Kizer then had a terrible misread, throwing to a well-covered receiver and it resulted in an interception returned for a touchdown. The corner undercut the route as Kizer should have thrown the ball away. At halftime, Kizer was only 6-of-13 for 70 yards and an interception.

    Things started poorly in the third quarter, as Kizer took a sack when he needed to get the ball out, but after a turnover, Kizer produced points. He converted a fourth down and then hit his receiver on the run for a short touchdown pass.

    In the third quarter, Kizer laid out a nice deep ball for a 40-yard gain. A few plays later, Kizer threw a perfect deep ball, dropping in a 29-yard touchdown. The USC defense was able to come off the field and shut down Notre Dame after that. Kizer finished completing 17-of-32 passes for 220 yards with two touchdowns and one interception. He also ran for a score. Kizer actually passed better than the numbers indicate, as he had a number of really good throws dropped by his receivers.

    Kizer showed that he has a good skill set with an arm to throw accurately downfield and field vision to work through progressions. Kizer’s decision-making and ball security does need improvement for the NFL. If Kizer enters the 2017 NFL Draft, this writer believes he will be a top-20 pick even though he has some flaws in this game.

  • Notre Dame left tackle Mike McGlinchey could be a top-20 pick as well. He was very good at protecting Kizer against the Trojans. McGlinchey has nice knee bend, footwork and athleticism on the edge. In the ground game, he helped produce some chunk runs with blocks at the second level to spring his back. McGlinchey has suggested he might return to school, but if he enters the draft, he would be in the running to be the first offensive tackle drafted.

  • Notre Dame guard Quenton Nelson was rock solid against USC. He is an absolute bull in the ground game. Nelson was pushing defenders off the line of scrimmage and opening holes at the point of attack. He also was good in pass protection. This tape will help him to grade out as a first-round pick. I think Nelson is going to be a 10-year starter and Pro Bowler in the NFL if he stays healthy.

  • The star of this game was USC cornerback Adoree’ Jackson. He had a prolific outing that was record setting. In the second quarter, Jackson had a pass breakup and almost hauled an interception. Jackson then returned a punt 55 yards untouched for a touchdown. Shortly later, he had a good tackle on a third-down screen pass short of first-down yardage.

    In the third quarter, Jackson entered the game on offense and caught a swing pass in the flat. He exploded down the field for a 52-yard touchdown. Jackson gave up a touchdown on a slant-and-go to the corner of the end zone that Kizer threw perfectly, but right away after that, Jackson brought back a kick 97 yards for a touchdown.

    Overall, this game showed that Jackson is a great athlete with rare speed that is a dynamic weapon with the ball in his hands. He needs to improve his eye discipline as a cornerback. For the NFL, Jackson looks like a future starting cornerback and dangerous weapon on special teams.

    Alabama 30, Auburn 12
  • Alabama defensive lineman Jonathan Allen is in the running to be a top-five pick next April, and he continued his phenomenal senior season. In the first quarter, Allen had a tackle for a loss on a jet sweep that showed his speed to close on the running back on the perimeter. He added another tackle for a loss shortly later. In the third quarter, Allen came unblocked to burst into the backfield for his third tackle for a loss. Those were the highlight plays for Allen, but he was disruptive and tough at the point of attack. Allen is a great player and worthy of a top-five pick.

  • There was the potential for a good draft matchup in this game with Alabama left tackle Cam Robinson seeing a dangerous edge rusher in Auburn junior defensive end Carl Lawson. However, Lawson mostly lined up over the right tackle, and he was a non-factor in this game. He didn’t get heat on the quarterback and Alabama was able to run at him. In the third quarter, Lawson overpursued on containment on the edge and that allowed a short touchdown run for Jalen Hurts.

    Lawson is quick and athletic, but he is undersized for defensive end in the NFL. His best fit would come as a 3-4 outside linebacker. Lawson has edge-rushing skills, but is going to need to improve his run defense as a pro. As a result, he looks more like an early Friday night pick rather than a Thursday night selection.

    Robinson benefits from a weak class of offensive tackles. He has some flaws in pass protection, but he is a plus run blocker. Robinson wasn’t blasting guys off the line of scrimmage in this game, but he was controlling his defenders and latching on to them well. He was turning them and helping to open holes in the ground game. He also was steady in pass protection. Robinson looks like a lock as a top-20 pick in the 2017 NFL Draft.

  • Alabama senior tight end O.J. Howard was playing in his final home game for the Crimson Tide. Even though he has been underutilized in his collegiate career, Alabama went to its tight end to move the chains. He had a number of plays to get first downs, including a 14-yarder to set up a touchdown. He totaled four receptions for 45 yards. Sources say that Howard is grading out as a late first-round pick.

  • Sources say that Alabama cornerback Marlon Humphrey is in the running to be the top cornerback prospect for the NFL, but unfortunately, Humphrey left this game with an injury. The Crimson Tide will need Humphrey in the college playoff, and hopefully the injury isn’t serious.

  • Alabama linebacker Reuben Foster was all over the field against the Auburn spread offense. He had a number of good tackles and blew up a bunch of plays in the backfield. Foster showed off his excellent speed and athleticism while also dishing out some blistering hits. This tape will help Foster to be a first-round pick.

  • Auburn defensive tackle Montravius Adams flashed at times against Alabama. In the second quarter, Adams had a hard hit on a run by Jalen Hurts and caused a fumble that Alabama recovered. Adams had a few plays of causing disruption in the backfield and came close to a sack in the second quarter, but Hurts was able to escape his grasp. In the fourth quarter, Adams stuffed a run for no gain. Adams is a very talented player who could be a steal in the 2017 NFL Draft if he plays with a more steady motor.

    Ohio State 30, Michigan 27 (2OT)
  • There was a ton of NFL talent in this game. In speaking with NFL scouts that have graded both teams draft prospects, the highest-rated player in this game was Ohio State safety Malik Hooker with a top-10 grade from multiple teams. Early in the second quarter, Hooker cleaned up a tackle for a loss on a carry from Jabrill Peppers that was a third-and-goal to force a field goal. Hooker was then in zone coverage and read the eyes of the quarterback to pick off a pass and return it for a touchdown. It was his third pick-six of the season and an impressive play.

    In the third quarter, Hooker had a painful missed tackle on a screen pass that allowed a first down, but Hooker was bailed out by a face mask penalty. Hooker had some impressive run fills after that, coming downhill and stopping backs close to the line of scrimmage. Hooker is extremely fast and eats up ground in an instant. Overall this was an impressive performance from Hooker. This tape will help Hooker and confirm the top-10 grades he’s already generated.

  • Michigan safety Jabrill Peppers is a highly hyped prospect by the media. Some NFL sources feel he is being overhyped, but he is a great athlete who could be a Thursday night selection in the 2017 NFL Draft. In the first half, Peppers was beaten for a first-down reception on a third down, but he made the tackle after the catch. Peppers was then beaten by a tight end for a first-down reception. Peppers was a step behind but made the tackle quickly. However, a few plays later, Peppers had his first interception of his collegiate career, a shocking stat for a defensive back who is said to be a Heisman Trophy candidate. A ball was tipped up in the air and Peppers ran under it to catch the pass.

    In the fourth quarter, Peppers missed a tackle on J.T. Barrett in the open field and that let him run an additional 30 yards to get well into Michigan territory. The next play, Curtis Samuel got separation from Peppers on a reception. Peppers was then beaten by a tight end for a big catch to set up a short field goal for Ohio State to send the game to overtime. In extra time, Peppers was juked by Samuel in the open field on an 18-yard run to set up the first touchdown for Ohio State.

    Overall, this wasn’t a good tape from Peppers. He is a good run defender who plays well in the box, but he has problems in pass coverage. He is athletic and fast enough to cover, but he gets caught flat-footed and is slow to react to cuts. That consistently allows separation. In the NFL, Peppers would be best as a strong safety who walks down into the box like Deone Bucannon. However, Peppers could get picked on in pass coverage. Don’t be surprised if Peppers ends up going later in the first round than the media hype suggests.

  • Ohio State junior inside linebacker Raekwon McMillan was active against Michigan. He had a lot of tackles in the tackle box and was tough at the point of attack. However, he was beaten on some passing plays for reception and letting underneath targets get open. He did have a good pressure un a blitz that helped result in Hooker’s interception. McMillan also overpursued on a play, but he came back to make an impressive play to snuff out a draw that would have been a big gain if McMillan didn’t make the tackle in space. McMillan is a second-day linebacker prospect because of his limitations in pass coverage. He should be a good run defender quickly in the NFL.

  • Michigan tight end Jake Butt had five receptions for 58 yards. On the first drive of the game, Butt had a gain of about 10 on a short drag route. He then hurt the Wolverines with a false start and a terrible drop on an easy reception that would have converted a third down. He came back to make a reception for 22 yards after getting open in zone coverage. Butt isn’t an impressive blocker in part because he doesn’t attack blocking. After his dropped pass though, Butt had probably the best blocking game I’ve ever seen from him. If he would play with that blocking tenacity all the time, he would be a better prospect for the NFL.

  • Michigan defensive ends Chris Wormley and Taco Charlton were impressive against Ohio State. In the first quarter, Wormley got in on a tackle for a loss. Charlton then beat center Pat Elflein to get to J.T. Barrett, and Wormley joined him to finish the sack. In the third quarter, Wormley had a hit on the quarterback that helped lead to an errant throw that was intercepted by Peppers. Charlton then had a pressure to force Barrett to step up in the pocket, and Wormley chased him down for a sack.

    In the fourth quarter, Charlton was at it again, as he burned the right tackle with a speed rush to get a sack. The Michigan defensive line consistently outplayed the Ohio State front. Buckeyes center Pat Elflein allowed a sack, and the Buckeyes struggled to run the ball consistently. Entering overtime, Charlton had seven tackles with 2.5 sacks. He started another sack in the extra session that was finished off by a teammate. Both Charlton and Wormley will be helped in their bids to be early-round picks with this performance.

  • Ohio State cornerbacks Marshon Lattimore and Gareon Conley have received first-round grades according to team sources. Both players had a couple of lowlights in this game, but aside from a couple of plays, they were sound in coverage. In overtime, Lattimore was beaten for a touchdown on fourth-and-goal. Conley, meanwhile, was beaten for separation in the third quarter that led to a key third-down conversion, but he had a clutch pass breakup in second over time. This tape shouldn’t cause any change in their draft grades though.

  • Ohio State wide receiver/running back Curtis Samuel had the game-winning touchdown run. He totaled 54 yards on seven carries with four receptions for 32 yards. Samuel is a lot like Percy Harvin as a player and he could be a first- or second-round pick if he enters the 2017 NFL Draft.

    Virginia Tech 52, Virginia 10
  • There was a good draft matchup in this game with Virginia safety Quin Blanding taking on Virginia Tech tight end Bucky Hodges and wide receiver Isaiah Ford. However, senior fullback Sam Rogers was the player who impressed the most.

    Late in the first quarter, Rogers was able to power through Blanding on a short touchdown run, and it was an impressive burst from Rogers. Shortly later though, Blanding was near the ball and was able to recover a fumble for Virginia. However, Blanding was then beaten for a 39-yard touchdown, as he didn’t play the ball well in the air and let it sail over his hand into the receiver.

    Rogers ran up the middle before bouncing the run to the outside in the second quarter. Blanding overpursued and Rogers broke to the outside to get the sideline. He raced for a 32-yard touchdown run. Shortly later, Rogers got open down the seam on a quick pass that he took for a 30-yard gain. Rogers didn’t get much action after that, as the Hokies blew out Virginia and played backups. Rogers had 15 carries for 108 yards and two touchdowns with two receptions for 29 yards.

    This was an impressive tape from Rogers, as he showed NFL teams he can be a short-yardage back as a pro and a receiver out of the backfield. Rogers also was a solid blocker. This performance could help Rogers to be a mid-round pick.

  • Blanding didn’t impress in this game, as he had some missed tackles, took some bad angles, and was beaten for a touchdown. This tape could hurt his draft grade. In a strong safety class, Blanding should consider returning for his senior year.

  • Hodges got involved quickly with gains totaling around 20 yards on the first drive. In the second quarter, Hodges got separation running down the field into the end zone, but Hodges dropped the touchdown. Later, he tried to make a diving, one-handed catch for about a 50-yard touchdown, but couldn’t control the ball. Hodges finally connected downfield right after halftime, as he ran by a cornerback to make a diving 42-yard touchdown catch.

    Hodges finished with four receptions for 69 yards, but the missed plays in this game were more powerful than the positive ones. Still, Hodges looks like a future day-two prospect.

    Washington 45, Washington State 17
  • Washington State quarterback Luke Falk was seeing a good test with Washington cornerback Sidney Jones and safety Budda Baker. Both are future NFL defensive backs, while Falk has been a prolific passer in college. A report from Bleacher Report said Falk was going to enter the draft, but Falk denied that, saying he hadn’t made up his mind, and his inclination was more toward returning to school. This game should only serve to delay Falk going to the NFL.

    In the first quarter, Falk dropped in a beauty with a 36-yard pass down the seam over the shoulder of his receiver. It was a perfectly placed ball to beat the pass coverage. That pass set up a field goal for the Cougars. Falk then almost ran the ball for a touchdown, but was stopped a yard short. That set up a score, but late in the half, Falk had a terrible play to lose points. On a first-and-goal, Falk had nothing open and scrambled around. He then threw off his back foot into a crowd of defenders for an interception. It was a terrible pass and decision by Falk.

    Falk threw a strike in the third quarter to Gabe Marks, who was wide open in busted zone coverage for a touchdown. Shortly later, Falk took a bad coverage sack. He also tossed an interception with a poorly thrown pass. Late during garbage time, Falk threw another pick as he hurled a ball downfield into triple coverage. Falk finished completing 33-of-50 passes for 269 yards with one score and three interceptions.

    This tape illustrates that Falk should return to college next season. Falk is going to need schematic development for the NFL, similar to a quarterback like Jared Goff, Deshaun Watson, or Pat Mahomes II. Like those signal-callers, Falk always operates out of the shotgun, so he will need to learn how to work under center and his footwork with taking three- and five-step drops from being under center. He also will have to learn to call plays in the huddle. There are a number of quick throws and bubble screens that the Cougars run that won’t translate as well. That is the same hurdle for those other quarterbacks, and Falk will have the same challenges. Falk also needs to work on moving his eyes and working through progressions rather than locking onto one receiver or one side of the field.

  • In the second quarter, Jones was beaten on a deep post route by Marks, but a safety bailed out Jones with help over the top to knock Falk’s pass away. Jones was caught flat-footed as Marks hit the jab step on the post. Marks got a gain of about 10 on a crossing route, and Jones made a quick tackle after the reception.

    However, aside from those plays, Jones was sound in preventing separation; he allowed a short catch in the third quarter, but was right there to make the tackle on Marks. Jones had blanket coverage on a lot of plays, and generally, Falk targeted other cornerbacks.

    Overall, Jones played well. He allowed a few receptions, but was right there to get tackles and limit the gains. He forced incompletions and also didn’t allow separation very often. This tape shouldn’t hurt or help his draft stock, and he looks like a first-round potential cornerback.

  • Baker made some big tackles, including snuffing out a screen for no gain and a tackle for a loss on a fourth-and-goal. In the fourth quarter, Baker had his second interception of the season. Baker was running with a wideout on a crossing route, and Falk threw a floater that fell right to Baker for the turnover. Overall, this tape will help his draft stock. He showed flexibility to cover receivers and come downhill in the ground game. Baker (5-10, 192) needs to get stronger to tackle in the NFL, but he has instincts, quickness and athleticism. He could be an early-rounder in a loaded safety class if he enters the draft.

  • Washington wide receiver John Ross has been enjoying a breakout season for the Huskies. The junior has been a speedy playmaker, and is a dangerous slot receiver. In the first quarter, Ross made a superb hands catch on a slant to snatch a fastball out of the air and reel it in. Ross then made a nice over-the-shoulder catch on a fade route in the back corner of the end zone. At halftime, he had eight receptions for 80 yards and a touchdown. Ross was shut out in the final two quarters, however. If Ross enters the 2017 NFL Draft, he could be a first-round pick in the back half. He is a similar player to Brandin Cooks or Sterling Shepard. If Ross slips to Friday night, he shouldn’t get out of the second round.

    Missouri 28, Arkansas 24
  • There was a good draft matchup in this game with Missouri defensive end Charles Harris going against Arkansas left tackle Dan Skipper. Each player’s strength matched up against the other’s weakness. Harris is a fast pass-rusher off the edge, the sort of player who gives Skipper problems. Skipper is a tough run blocker, and defending the downhill run is a problem for Harris. Thus, it would be interesting to see who would get the better of this matchup.

    In the first quarter, Harris had a fast spin move to get by Skipper to almost get a sack of quarterback Austin Allen. Harris had a few pressures running by Skipper in the third quarter, but Allen was getting rid of the pass before Harris could get there. Skipper also got away with some holds. Harris later almost destroyed a screen pass as he slammed Allen into the turf, but the pass was released to set up a long gain for the Razorbacks. The very next play, Harris batted a pass for an incompletion.

    Harris was just a hair away from a strip-sack late in the fourth quarter, but Allen got the ball out. Harris burned Skipper with a speed rush on the play. Harris then surprised Skipper with a bull rush and all Skipper could do to stop Harris was drag him down to the turf for a holding penalty. That ended up being a huge play in helping Missouri to hold on for a narrow win, as it put Arkansas in a difficult down-and-distance situation.

    This tape serves to confirm the evaluation on both players from this season. Skipper is a run-blocking right tackle in the NFL who is going to need help with speed rushers. He is more of a mid-round prospect.

    Harris, meanwhile, is a speed rusher for the NFL who could use development in his run defense. As a pro, his best fit could come as a 3-4 outside linebacker, as he could have problems holding up with his hand in the ground for four quarters against pro sized offensive tackles. Harris is a fast, athletic pass-rusher who has Thursday night potential.

  • Arkansas senior tight end Jeremy Sprinkle will probably have a hard time forgetting this game, and the way it ended. In the first half, Sprinkle made a few catches to move the chains. Sprinkle made a great juggling catch reaching out to tip the pass to him and control it for a gain of about 20 in the third quarter. Unfortunately for Sprinkle, he had a game-winning touchdown fall through his hands late in regulation. It was a difficult over-the-shoulder catch with a defender in the sight line, but he still should have held on to the ball. It was a rare sight from the normally sure-handed Sprinkle.

    Sprinkle totaled four receptions and 48 yards. He did a decent job as a blocker. For the 2017 NFL Draft, Sprinkle could be a nice mid-round value who ends up being a solid No. 2 tight end in the NFL.

  • Arkansas defensive end Deatrich Wise, Jr. was very quiet in the regular-season finale. Missouri ramped up the deep ball in the passing game, but Wise was not a factor in protecting the Razorbacks’ lead. He is going to need a strong performance at an All-Star game to help his draft stock.

    LSU 54, Texas A&M 39
  • I was very excited to see this matchup of my top two draft prospects since the start of the 2017 NFL Draft process with Texas A&M defensive end Myles Garrett going against LSU running back Leonard Fournette. Unfortunately, Fournette was held out of this game because of an ankle injury. Garrett was active but didn’t have a huge game, as he totaled two tackles with both being assisted tackles for a loss.

    Early in the first quarter, Garrett got penetration into the backfield to help stop a run for no gain. Garrett then had a lightning rush to come straight down the pocket for a pressure after lining up at defensive tackle. In the fourth quarter, Garrett used a speed rush to the inside of the left tackle to give a big shot to the quarterback just after the ball was released. He also started a tackle for a loss near the end zone.

    Garrett has shown toughness, playing injured to close out the 2016 season. This tape should only serve to confirm that Garrett is a disruptive presence at the point of attack. While his run defense isn’t great, he has improved in defending the ground game as a junior compared to his previous seasons. Garrett is a lock to go high in the 2017 NFL Draft.

  • LSU cornerback Tre’Davious White was playing in his penultimate game in college football and this was not an impressive outing from him. White dropped an interception that flew right into his chest in the third quarter. It was one of the easiest pick opportunities he will ever have, but he couldn’t hold onto the pass. Shortly later, Josh Reynolds got separation from White on a short slant and burst down the field for a 32-yard touchdown. A backup Aggies wide receiver later got some separation from White, and the LSU corner lost his feet in his backpedal. That allowed a gain of about 25 yards and almost a touchdown. White came back to break up a pass in the end zone.

    There has been some hype about White being a first-round pick, but WalterFootball.com knows some sources that feel that is an exaggeration. This could be a very talented class of cornerbacks, and that could push White down. This tape made him look more like a second-round pick rather than a Thursday night selection.

  • LSU junior safety Jamal Adams is a future top-20 pick who has been quiet in a lot of games this season, but he turned in one with impressive performances against Alabama and Ole Miss. After not having a big presence against Florida a week ago, he played better in the regular-season finale versus the Aggies.

    Adams had a sack in the first quarter, as he was spying Knight and closed on him in the pocket. Adams then followed Christian Kirk in motion across the formation. After the snap, the Aggies tried to set up a screen to Kirk, but Adams closed the 10 yards in a blur to tackle Kirk for a loss. Adams later had blanket coverage on Kirk along the sideline to force an incompletion on a fourth-and-4. It was impressive coverage on the speedster Kirk. However, shortly later, Adams ran himself out of a play biting on a fake, and that let a huge hole open up for a long touchdown run for the Aggies. Aside from that play, Adams played well with five tackles, two for a loss, and one sack.

    For the NFL, Adams looks like he prefers to be a strong safety who plays in the box and works in the underneath part of the field. While he is more of a strong safety, he has some coverage skills and should be a solid contributor to pass defense. This tape will help him to go in the top 20.

  • LSU wide receiver Malachi Dupre had four catches for 50 yards and a touchdown against Texas A&M. In the second quarter, Dupre ran an impressive route on a stop and go to get a 20-yard score. He showed a late burst to track down the ball in the back corner of the end zone with some late separation from that burst. The 6-foot-4, 194-pounder has a good skill set but has been held back by the poor quarterback play at LSU. If Dupre declares for the 2017 NFL Draft, he could be a second-day pick.

  • LSU linebacker Kendell Beckwith, LSU wide receiver Travin Dural, and Texas A&M safety Armani Watts were all held out with injuries.


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