The Scorecrow Scout Team | April 18th, 2020
We are almost there! The 2020 NFL draft is almost here and it’s going to be a draft like no other in NFL history. However, once the draft starts and the picks start rolling, everyone will forget about how the draft is being done remotely and focus on who is being picked and what team is trading up. Here at The Scorecrow, five of our NFL draft scouts (Givanni Damico, Mason Thompson, Connor Neal, Byron Jewell, Brady Podloski) have put together a list of their top-five at each position.
In addition to listing off their top-fives, each scout will give a quick explanation for what player at the position is the most underrated and most overrated. Part one of the series is on quarterbacks and running backs. Remember all of our scouts hate your favorite prospect and rank them too low or not at all just to annoy you. Without further ado let’s get started!
Gio – Bryce Perkins, Virginia
In a quarterback class that lacks any semblance of depth, Perkins is the only quarterback that I feel is being underrated right now. He is a fantastic athlete, rushing for over 700 yards last year while simultaneously passing for over 3,500 yards. He threw 12 interceptions last year which is more than I like to see at the college level, but then again, I give Love a lot of first-round hype as well. My biggest problem with Perkins is that if he gets rattled by the defense, he won’t throw anymore. He’ll stick to the running game and become one-dimensional. Overall, if I were a team with an aging veteran such as the Falcons with Matt Ryan, I’d take a shot on Perkins in the late-rounds in hopes that he can develop into a starter someday.
Mason – Nathan Stanley, Iowa
Stanley is a great candidate to be a backup in the NFL. He has shown a lot of development over the course of his career at Iowa, unlike some of the other quarterbacks in this class. He is further developed than a lot of the other quarterbacks that aren’t going to be selected in day one, but he’s not being talked about. Stanley has a good blend of accuracy as well as arm power, which most quarterbacks in this class have one of these traits, not both.
Connor – Jalen Hurts, Oklahoma
Hurts is a natural-born leader who has one of the best football IQs in this class. Although Hurts sometimes makes sloppy decisions with the ball, he has all the potential in the world. Out of everyone in this class, Hurts has the best mobility paired with great arm strength. Along with the fact that Hurts has an insane pocket presence, it’s almost like he has eyes in the back of his head.
Byron – James Morgan, Florida International
Morgan is a very intriguing developmental quarterback piece. He has rare intangibles, great pocket awareness, good size, and most importantly – arm talent. He can get hot and make throws all over the field but has a problem with decision making and accuracy sometimes. Good physical traits for a coach to work with over time.
Brady – Anthony Gordon, Washington State
There is something to be said for throwing the ball 40 to 60 times a game. Gordon isn’t going to be Gardner Minshew II, but he has the ability to get into a rhythm when throwing and can become a capable backup or fringe starter on the right team.
Gio – Jake Fromm, Georgia
Fromm does nothing exceptionally in my mind. He has an average arm at best and has no physical tools that make him even a good project. He was surrounded by top-tier talent at Georgia and still looked like an average quarterback. He’s a very intelligent player and can manage a game well, but he has no mobility and his placement is pretty awful. The reason Fromm is one of my least favorite quarterbacks in this class is because he has very low potential. His ceiling is a mediocre backup quarterback that the fans don’t want to see enter the game if their starter gets hurt. Fromm isn’t even a project to me. He’s just a filler pick as a backup.
Mason – Jacob Eason, Washington
Eason has a great arm and decent accuracy, but his progressions and decision making need a ton of work to work at the next level. Even with a year of sitting out to learn Washington’s system, it still didn’t seem like he had a firm grasp on the system. Definitely a project that shouldn’t have any first-round hype.
Connor – Jake Fromm, Georgia
Fromm has one of the worst arms in this class, he stays in the pocket for way too long, and doesn’t scramble when he needs to. He had just 40 rushing yards in his entire career at Georgia, proving that mobility is a major problem for him. Fromm got a fifth-round grade from me and I’m not sure if I would even take him there.
Byron – Jake Fromm, Georgia
Fromm had a lot of success at Georgia but from a prospect standpoint, he lacks a lot of important qualities. He lacks arm strength, mobility, and ideal size. He will need a very strong supporting cast and a good system to be effective.
Brady – Jacob Eason, Washington
He has a cannon for an arm, but was supported by his offense more than what people give him credit for. Outside of arm strength, he doesn’t have the intangibles of a successful starter in the NFL.
Gio – Cam Akers, Florida State
Akers was a bell-cow running back at Florida State. He only averaged 4.9 yards per carry in his three-year college career, but if you watch his tape and see the offensive line that he’s running behind, that 4.9 looks really incredible. Akers could be drafted by the Dolphins and their line would be at least ten times better than that of the Seminoles. Because of the pressure given up, he also missed out on some opportunity in the receiving game. He was constantly overthrown or overlooked because the quarterback had no time to throw. Akers runs hard but smooth as well. He’s got the physical traits you want for a starting running back.
Mason – Adrian Killins, UCF
Killins wasn’t even invited to the combine. He would’ve put up a fight for a sub 4.3 40-yard dash time if he did receive an invite. Speed is the name of his game and if he is given a crease, he will expose it. Someone will be getting a great returner as well if he is even drafted on day three.
Connor – Eno Benjamin, Arizona State
For a running back as dense as Benjamin, he has very impressive hips that are fluid. Benjamin also has a very good burst through the line of scrimmage and can shrug off most tackles and continue to churn his way for more yards. It’s almost like contact doesn’t phase him, he doesn’t stumble when hit.
Byron – Antonio Gibson, Memphis
Gibson was a running back/wide receiver hybrid in college but I see him as a big-play machine as running back in the NFL. A walking explosive play, Gibson is an uber athlete, with an extremely high ceiling. Great size, hands, change of direction, and explosive cuts will provide a team with a potential starter out of the backfield.
Brady – Antonio Gibson, Memphis
Yes, he only had 33 carries at Memphis, but watch those carries and you’ll see that Gibson is special. He can break tackles effectively, catch the ball, and is a threat to score on every play. He’s a modern day NFL player with speed (ran a 4.39 forty yard dash) despite being a large man at 6’3” and 228 lbs.
Gio – AJ Dillon, Boston College
Dillon is a short-yardage back at the next level. He lacks technique as well as receiving ability. Is he big? Yes. Is he fast? Yes. But his vision isn’t very good and he can’t be trusted on outside runs at the next level. He reminds me of a combination of Cedric Benson and Brandon Jacobs. He might be around for a few years as a power back, but he won’t start anywhere.
Mason – Cam Akers, Florida State
The most underrated aspect of a running back is pass protection and Akers doesn’t excel at that. Often times, he doesn’t give any effort to even attempt to stop rushers from getting to the quarterback. His physical running style could take a toll on him at the next level, as well as fumbling problems.
Connor – Cam Akers, Florida State
Akers played behind a horrific offensive line at Florida State and due to that, he has great vision. However, he doesn’t have very good contact balance nor can he break tackles. I believe Akers is still a very good running back. The reason I picked Akers for the most overrated running back is that a lot of people have him ranked in their top four. In my opinion, there isn’t one area that Akers is better at than Dobbins, Swift, Taylor, or Edwards-Helaire.
Byron – Zack Moss, Utah
Zack Moss is a great power back and will run through you like a bowling ball, but he lacks the athleticism to really succeed at the next level. He’s not very creative, has very little wiggle, average vision, and subpar open field speed. Nothing more than a backup, who can provide so
Brady – J.K. Dobbins, Ohio State
His offensive line gave him way more room and space to run than any team in the NFL will. I don’t believe that he has the ability to break tackles like many of the other running backs in this draft class.
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