2024 NFL Draft Stock Up
Tyler Van Dyke, QB, Miami
Van Dyke burst onto the scene in 2021 with a fabulous season, but his 2022 season was lost to injury and inconsistency. The 2024 NFL Draft should feature a competitive quarterback class, so Van Dyke is going to need a huge year to rise up the rankings.
Van Dyke played superb football in Week 2 against Texas A&M’s quality squad, carrying the Hurricanes and compensating for some of their special teams problems. Versus the Aggies, he completed 21-of-30 passes for 374 yards, five touchdowns and zero interceptions. Van Dyke really should have been over 400 yards and had six scores, along with just a few incompletions, but his receivers dropped a number of well-thrown passes.
Van Dyke put together a superb tape against the Aggies. He was surgical, ripping the ball through their secondary. Van Dyke showed excellent, accuracy lofting in well-placed passes to all levels of the field. His deep ball was dropped in beautifully, with loft and precision, to lead his receivers for yards after the catch.
Marvin Harrison Jr., WR, Ohio State
After a quiet Week 1 against Indiana, Harrison erupted to dominate Youngstown State. He hauled in seven passes for 160 yards and two touchdowns. Harrison used his size and catch radius to overwhelm the coverage and was too fast to keep from getting open downfield. His performance against Youngstown State should confirm his high projection for the 2024 NFL Draft after a surprisingly down game versus the Hoosiers.
Joe Alt, OT, Notre Dame
Alt cruised over N.C. State while making his 24th straight start. Midway through the first half, Alt sprung his back for an 80-yard touchdown run. Alt was also rock solid in pass blocking, protecting Sam Hartman to let him throw four touchdowns versus the Wolfpack. Assuming Alt stays consistent and healthy over the remainder of the season, Alt looks worthy of being a top-20 pick next April in the 2024 NFL Draft.
Quinn Ewers, QB, Texas
Ewers led Texas to a huge road win over Alabama, and that was a statement game for his draft hopes. All night, he threw accurate strikes downfield, lofting in passes into windows in coverage and leading his receivers for yards after the catch. Ewers had a beautiful deep ball to wide receiver Xavier Worthy for a 44-yard touchdown, and Ewers’ 39-yard scoring strike to Adonai Mitchell was perfect. Against Alabama, Ewers completed 24-of-38 passes for 349 yards, three touchdowns and zero interceptions. He definitely helped his grade for the 2024 NFL Draft, as he was accurate, smart, efficient, and took care of the football. It was a superb performance.
Ja’Tavion Sanders, TE, Texas
Sanders is an early-round tight end prospect for the 2024 NFL Draft, and he illustrated his receiving ability against Alabama. The game started out roughly for Sanders, who lost a would-be reception after a hard hit from Malachi Moore, but Sanders bounced back to make some big plays.
On one of those, Sanders got open down the field for a gain of almost 40 yards. Then in the fourth quarter, he broke open in zone and put together an excellent run after the catch for a 50-yard gain. Sanders had a nice gain on a tight end screen shortly later, but that was canceled out by a penalty. He totaled 114 yards on five receptions and led the Longhorns in receiving.
Sanders will need to improve as a blocker for the NFL, but the 6-foot-4, 245-pounder is a smooth receiver who runs well after the catch. He finds the soft spot in zone and is able box out defensive backs for receptions. Sanders’ performance against the Crimson Tide will definitely help his draft grade, because he illustrated his potential to be an impactful receiving tight end in the NFL.
Kamren Kinchens, S, Miami
Kinchens had an excellent game versus Texas A&M before being carted off the field with a head/neck injury in the fourth quarter. In the early going, he made a tackle near the end zone to prevent a score and was staying around the ball. In the third quarter, Kinchens was in deep zone coverage when Texas A&M wide receiver Ainias Smith fell down and the pass floated to Kinchens for an interception. He added a good return to set up his offense deep in Aggies territory. Later in the third quarter, Kinchens tracked a deep ball well and almost had another interceptio,n but the pass fell incomplete as three players had their hands on the ball. However to end the drive, Kinchens was coming downhill in run support and was rewarded for being around the ball with a clutch fumble recovery for the Hurricanes.
Kinchens was around the ball, showing his excellent instincts, range to cover a lot of ground, ball skills, and discipline. With his skill set and intelligence, Kinchens looks like a quick starter. He could be a very good NFL free safety.
Laiatu Latu, DE, UCLA
Latu was in dominant form for the Bruins in Week 1, recording three sacks against Coastal Carolina. After recording 10.5 sacks and three forced fumbles in 2022, Latu is proving to be a dangerous quarterback hunter. The 6-foot-5, 265-pounder is quick off the edge with athleticism and a strong build.
Playing for Washington, Latu had injury issues that cost him the 2020 and 2021 seasons. A serious neck injury caused former Huskies coach Jimmy Lake to say Latu’s career was over, but he transferred to UCLA after Lake and his staff were let go. Latu then received medical clearance from UCLA before resuming his career.
Latu is talented and staying healthy in 2023 could help to reassure NFL team. He is off to a good start, playing well against Coastal Carolina and San Diego State.
2024 NFL Draft Stock Down
Jalen Milroe, QB, Alabama
Milroe showed that he is far from an NFL prospect in his performance against Texas. In the pocket, Milroe struggled to be a competent passer, taking off and running after his first read was covered, and he had a hard time reading the field. While Milroe is a dangerous runner, his passing ability is not not pro caliber. Unless Milroe makes huge improvements, he probably will have to switch positions for the next level.
Terrion Arnold, CB, Alabama
Arnold had an ugly outing against Texas. Early in the second quarter, Arnold was struggling to run with Texas speed receiver Adonai Mitchell, and Arnold had to hold him from getting open for a long touchdown. The holding was correctly flagged. In the third quarter, Arnold made a nice play in run defense, darting past Mitchell to get into the backfield for a tackle for a loss. Later in the same frame, Arnold broke well on a dig route to break up a pass, but then at the start of the fourth quarter, Arnold drew his second holding call after he had to grab onto Mitchell. With Arnold being reduced to holding to prevent long pass plays, his performance against Texas is going to hurt his draft grade.