Tuesday, May 6, 2014

2013 Draft Rewind

When watching film and reading various scouting reports, I always want to be inside Chip Kelly's mind to know exactly what he's looking for.

We all think we have an idea what Chip wants, but there's no way to be certain. A good way to get a good grasp is to take a look back at the scouting reports of the 2013 Draft Class.

1st Round: OT Lane Johnson (6-6, 303, 4.72 40)

- He's a freak. Johnson posted a ridiculous 40-time, 34" vertical, 118" broad jump, and 7.31 second 3-cone drill. He has great feet, and moves to the second level with no problem. Johnson shows good power in the run game, and uses his long arms to keep the defender from getting into his body. Johnson has that nasty attitude scouts look for in linemen. He has huge upside.

- Johnson isn't a polished prospect, and should get stronger. His technique could use some refinement, and he needs to add weight to anchor against bigger defensive linemen in the NFL.

2nd Round: TE Zach Ertz (6-5, 249, 4.76 40)

- Fluid athlete, showed good strength (24 reps) and change of direction (7.08 3-cone) at the Combine. He lacks elite long speed, but has enough to speed to threaten the seam. Ertz is a hard worker with good strength, always working on his physique. He sells his routes well and gets his head around quick to make the grab. He played a very versatile role at Stanford, with experience in-line, out wide and in the slot.

- His straight-line speed is a concern, and he lacks wiggle to make people miss in space. Ertz gives effort as a blocker but isn't very effective in that area. He will make a tough grab, but drop some easy ones.

3rd Round: NT Bennie Logan (6-2, 309)

- Logan is an athletic player and makes up for his average height with 34" arms. Bennie uses leverage to anchor vs. run and hold up vs. double teams. He uses his hands well and is an effort pass-rusher.

- He lacks great burst off the line and doesn't have polished pass-rush technique, will likely get a rest on passing downs. Logan could get a little stronger and might not anchor as well against NFL offensive linemen.

4th Round: QB Matt Barkley (6-2, 227)

- Barkley is quick to get rid of the football and very experienced at USC. He spots the mismatch at the line and makes numerous adjustments. Barkley isn't the most athletic QB, but he can make throws on the run and move well on rollouts. He has great intangibles for the position, 3-time team captain.

- He doesn't have elite size, and only has an average arm. Barkley doesn't always throw a tight spiral and can stare down his target on occasion. USC had a great supporting cast for Barkley, scouts are curious if his success is a byproduct of that.

5th Round: S Earl Wolff (5-11, 209, 4.44 40)

- Wolff has a strong build and showed off great speed at the Combine. He was a top performer in every drill he attempted, 39" vertical, 134" broad jump, 4.07 second 20-yd shuttle. Wolff is a physical tackler and wraps up securely. He has the traits to stay with receivers deep in man coverage, showing good speed and technique.

- He lacks elite height, and could get stronger. Wolff will struggle to get off blocks once he's engaged. His ball skills are OK, but could be better (6 career INTs in 3 years as a starter).

7th Round: DE Joe Kruger (6-6, 269, 4.83 40)

- Kruger has great size, long arms (34 3/8" arms), and good athletic ability. He uses his long arms to keep offensive linemen away from his body. Kruger has good burst off the ball and holds up well vs. blocks. He has a high motor and some upside.

- He plays high and is more of a linear athlete than a quick-twitch athlete. He doesn't change direction extremely well, and his technique needs refinement. Kruger pretty much relies on effort as a pass-rusher.

7th Round: CB Jordan Poyer (6-0, 191, 4.54 40)

- He's a smooth athlete with fluid movement and loose hips. He has good hands and competes for the football (11 INTs in 2011 and 2012). Poyer is a willing tackler with a versatile background at Oregon State. He has some return value.

- Has average size, strength, and speed for outside corner. Poyer has a poor backpedal and doesn't have recovery speed to make up for lost ground. He might be limited to the slot due to poor overall speed.

7th Round: DE David King (6-5, 286)

- King is athletic, and played a versatile role at Oklahoma. He can anchor vs. the run and has good strength to shed blocks. He has decent burst off the snap and uses his arms to block passing lanes.

- King has limited production and plays tall. He doesn't have great agility to change directions and lacks good closing speed. Will be a long-shot to make the roster.

Obvious Observations:

- Chip Kelly likes big, long, extremely athletic offensive tackles. His long size requirements seem to only apply to tackles, rather than the interior. He decided to keep undersized Jason Kelce around for the long-term future.

- Kelly is looking for safeties who are willing tacklers, have man coverage skill, and overall athleticism. Earl Wolff was a very good fit, and played well before injury in 2013. I'm excited to see if he makes a jump in 2014.

- While Bennie Logan lacks ideal height, his arm length compensates. Kelly mentioned he's not just looking for a big defense, rather a long defense. Logan also is an extremely athletic nose tackle, Kelly is looking for athleticism at every position.

- He's obviously looking for massive DEs with good strength to anchor his 3-4. He seems to not be bothered by lack of pass-rush, but is looking for smart players who can occupy blocks.

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