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Zach's Draft Corner: The Realistic 2017 49ers Redraft/What to Watch

September 13, 2019

 

 Image Credit: Andrew Giesemann

  

 

 

 

 

 

Welcome to Zach’s Draft Corner, where it’s always amateur hour.

 

 

They say you should always wait a few seasons before truly grading a team’s draft.  Well, it’s now the third season for those drafted in 2017, so it’s reasonable to think that we know, for the most part, what players are going to be.  Rather than do a strict re-draft, I just want to teleport ourselves back to 2017 and see what an optimal draft for the 49ers would have been had everything else stayed the same.

 

In this exercise, we want to stay semi-realistic.  Of course a player like JuJu Smith-Schuster would be a first round player in a full re-draft, but at the time, nobody thought of him as a first round caliber player.  I want to see what could have been the optimal scenario given how all of the picks in front of San Francisco played out, as well as trying to stick generally to the areas where the players went.  In that same vein, I'm not going to draft anyone that went undrafted.

 

Before we get started, yes, it's always easiest to look back with hindsight to say what could have happened.  One thing to notice is that the Day 3 contributors here were all drafted by different teams.  If any one GM found all of this talent in a single draft, they would immediately be lauded as the best GM of all time.  The fact that that 49ers keep two of their Day 3 selections here goes to show that the Lynchahan regime might actually know a thing or two.  Early misses will happen, but it becomes nearly impossible to find contributors with any one late pick.  That being said, if we were able to go back in time, here's what the 49ers could have legitimately done in 2017.

 

Trade with Chicago

 

Keep this.  It netted San Francisco an additional third- and fourth-round pick for moving down one spot.  The price was right.  What San Francisco did with those picks was wrong.

 

3rd overall pick

 

Actual pick - Solomon Thomas, DL, Stanford

New pick - Marshon Lattimore, CB, Ohio State

Analysis:  Looking back, with Myles Garrett coming off the board first overall, the options for the 49ers were mostly underwhelming.  Leonard Fournette, Corey Davis, Mike Williams, and John Ross have all been underwhelming.  Patrick Mahomes was a big-armed, developmental quarterback prospect with traits that are the complete antithesis of what Kyle Shanahan wants out of a quarterback.  If you remove the recency bias of what happened last year, I doubt Mahomes was considered.  Christian McCaffrey has been a stud and would have been perfect for Shanahan's system, but the third overall pick would have been too steep of a price for a running back.  That leaves Jamal Adams and Marshon Lattimore.  The secondary has been terrible for a while now, and either one of these picks would have greatly.  However, given the value of a corner exceeds that of a strong safety, I grab Marshon Lattimore, who inexplicably slid down to 11 when he was a top-5 talent on my board.

 

Trade with Seattle

 

Let's assume this trade sticks.  After all, there is a player certainly worth taking at that spot.  The 49ers just took the wrong one.

 

31st overall pick

 

Actual pick - Reuben Foster, LB, Alabama

New pick - Ryan Ramczyk, OT, Wisconsin

Analysis:  Hoo boy, was this a bad pick in retrospect.  While the 49ers lucked out with McGlinchey a few years later, if the 49ers solidified the right tackle spot sooner with Ramczyk, they would not have even been in position to grab Joe Staley's new best friend.  Ramczyk has been the best offensive lineman from this class and would have upgraded this class, for sure.  Besides, having both Ramczyk and Juszczyk would have been a great monopoly on "-czyk" last names.

 

66th overall pick

 

Actual pick - Ahkello Witherspoon, CB, Colorado

New pick - Cooper Kupp, WR, Eastern Washington

Analysis:  The 49ers did just fine later in the draft when they took Trent Taylor to be the slot receiver.  I want to emphasize that it was "just fine."  While it may exceed expectations for a 5th round pick, taking Cooper Kupp here would have been a home run.  While Witherspoon may look like he is finally starting to become the cornerback we hoped he would be, with the presence of Marshon Lattimore, Witherspoon isn't needed.  Kupp has been a fantastic receiver since entering the league, and nobody could argue that he wouldn't be an upgrade over Trent Taylor in the slot.

 

Trade with New Orleans

 

Let's see here.  In this trade, the 49ers gave up the 67th overall pick to obtain the 229th overall pick, which would become Adrian Colbert, and the 59th overall pick in 2018, which the 49ers would later trade for Dante Pettis.  While I do think Dante Pettis has a future, I don't think he is going to shatter the record books.  Instead, let's nix this trade and give the 49ers back the 67th overall pick.  Hmm, I wonder who's available...

 

67th overall pick

 

New pick - Alvin Kamara, RB, Tennessee

Analysis:  If any 49er fan was asked if they would accept a trade of Alvin Kamara for Dante Pettis and Adrian Colbert, I guarantee almost every one of them would say yes.  So let's do it here.  Kamara may be the only running back not named Christian McCaffrey or Saquon Barkley who is both a superstar and a perfect fit for Shanahan's offense.  Instead of the gold and black, Kamara now wears the red and gold.

 

Trade with Minnesota

 

No.  Please no.  Let's take this back immediately, shall we?  Let's leave that 104th overall pick alone, where the 49ers took C.J. Beathard, and get back the 109th pick and the 219th pick.  Fair?  Ok.  Let's continue.

 

109th overall pick

 

New pick - Eddie Jackson, S, Alabama

Analysis:  It's time to continue finding the cornerstones of the secondary rebuild in the first year of the Lynchahan era.  Eddie Jackson, selected 112th overall by Chicago, has been phenomenal for the Bears the past two seasons.  Assuming the 49ers still found a way to sign Richard Sherman, a secondary consisting of Marshon Lattimore, Eddie Jackson, and Richard Sherman would simply be deadly.

 

Trade with Indianapolis

 

My word, I forgot just how many trades there were in this draft.  Just remember, though.  Not all trades end up well.  Let's leave Joe Williams here and take back the 143rd and 161st overall picks.

 

143rd overall pick

 

New pick - Desmond King, CB, Iowa

Analysis:  Let's continue the secondary rebuild.  K'Waun Williams has been relatively good as the slot cornerback for the 49ers.  However, Desmond King is one of the best slot cornerbacks in football.  Going just eight picks later to the Chargers, Los Angeles found themselves one of the steals of the draft.  In this world, the 49ers get that steal.

 

146th overall pick

 

Actual pick - George Kittle, TE, Iowa

New pick - George Kittle, TE, Iowa

Analysis:  Do you really need analysis on this one?  Thought not.

 

161st overall pick

 

New pick - Anthony Walker Jr., LB, Northwestern

The Colts, just like the Saints before them, took the right player with the pick they obtained from the 49ers.  Walker has been a great pickup for the Colts, playing a great Robin to Darius Leonard's Batman.  With the near-term departure of Bowman, the 49ers need another linebacker, and Walker fits the bill.

 

177th overall pick

 

Actual pick - Trent Taylor, WR, Louisiana Tech

New pick - Xavier Woods, S, Louisiana Tech

Analysis:  Without Cooper Kupp, this would have been the right pick.  With Cooper Kupp, Taylor is expendable, and the 49ers take a new player from Louisiana Tech.  Let's just finish the secondary rebuild completely with this draft, shall we?  Woods has been decent as a strong safety for the Cowboys, and would at least be an upgrade over the revolving door at the position the 49ers have had in recent years.

 

198th overall pick

 

Actual pick - D.J. Jones, DT, Ole Miss

New pick - D.J. Jones, DT, Ole Miss

Analysis:  Another one that the 49ers nailed.  Jones has been a valuable nose tackle for the 49ers, so this one sticks.

 

202nd overall pick

 

Actual pick - Pita Taumoepenu, DE, Utah

New pick - Rudy Ford, S, Auburn

Analysis:  No great moves within the next few picks.  Ford is likely the best of the bunch, going 208th overall to the Arizona Cardinals and acting as a key special-teams contributor.  In the late 6th round, you can't ask for much more.


219th overall pick


New pick - David Moore, WR, East Central University

Analysis:  As a reminder, this pick was given to Minnesota in the initial trade up from the 4th round to get C.J. Beathard.  So, in essence, the 49ers traded Eddie Jackson and David Moore for C.J. Beathard.  Great, right?  Taken just a few picks later by the Seattle Seahawks, David Moore has scratched and clawed his way to number two on the WR depth chart, pending D.K. Metcalf's ascension.  Moore would have found ways to contribute to a now re-energized 49ers receiving corps.

 

Are you done getting depressed?  As a summary, here is the final comparison of what actually happened and what could have been.

 

Actual players added

Solomon Thomas

Reuben Foster

Ahkello Witherspoon

Dante Pettis

C.J. Beathard

Joe Williams

George Kittle

Trent Taylor

D.J. Jones

Pita Taumoepenu

Adrian Colbert

 

Realistic what could have been scenario

Marshon Lattimore

Ryan Ramczyk

Cooper Kupp

Alvin Kamara

Eddie Jackson

Desmond King

George Kittle

Anthony Walker Jr.

Xavier Woods

D.J. Jones

Rudy Ford

David Moore

 

TV Guide

The sheer amount of college games on at any given time can be completely overwhelming.  Every week, in the TV Guide section of my column, I will choose the top two games at any given time slot and outline the various prospects you can watch in those games.  That way, all you have to do is sit back, relax, and hit the “Previous Channel” button on your remote to toggle between games chock full of pro prospects.  Here is your guide for week three (all times Eastern, rankings in parentheses).

 

As a reminder, we have a new format for the TV Guide this season.  I’m going to list all of the draft eligible players that will impact the games themselves, meaning the lists will be pretty long.  Then, I'll summarize each team by showing the players seriously in contention to be drafted at this point in time.  However, it's important to know that one exceptional season can cause an impactful player to become a draftable player, so these names are still good to monitor.

 

Friday, September 13

 

University of North Carolina at Wake Forest University, 6:00 PM, ESPN

 

North Carolina

Antonio Williams, Senior Running Back, #24

Michael Carter, Junior Running Back, #8

Carl Tucker, Senior Tight End, #86

Brandon Fritts, Senior Tight End, #82

Charlie Heck, Senior Tackle, #67

Jason Strowbridge, Senior Defensive Tackle, #55

Jonathan Smith, Senior Linebacker, #7

Dominique Ross, Senior Linebacker, #3

Bryce Watts, Junior Cornerback, #2

Patrick Rene, Senior Cornerback, #5

Myles Dorn, Senior Safety, #1

 

North Carolina doesn’t have much of a defense to speak of this season, but each name listed here on offense has a decent chance to see a training camp.  Williams and Carter form an effective tandem at running back.  Tucker excels as a blocker at tight end, while Fritts is the more effective receiver.  Heck is a decent prospect at tackle, and is likely a mid- to late-round pick.  Overall, there aren’t any true difference makers on this team.  There also aren’t any great games during this time slot, so you get to watch this.

 

Wake Forest

Cade Carney, Senior Running Back, #36

Steven Claude, Senior Wide Receiver, #5

Sage Suratt, Redshirt Sophomore Wide Receiver, #14

Scotty Washington, Senior Wide Receiver, #7

Jack Freudenthal, Senior Tight End, #86

Nathan Gilliam, Senior Tackle, #71

Justin Herron, Senior Tackle, #75

Jake Benzinger, Senior Tackle, #75

Carlos Basham, Junior Defensive End, #9

Justin Strnad, Senior Linebacker, #23

Essang Bassey, Senior Cornerback, #21

Amari Henderson, Senior Cornerback, #4

 

Sage Suratt gives Wake Forest a much needed weapon at receiver, but he still has quite a ways to go in refining his game.  Gilliam is a dependable tackle, but doesn’t show the traits to be a blue chip player.  His niche will likely be as a backup swing tackle.

 

University of Kansas at Boston College, 7:30 PM, ACC Network/ESPN3

 

Kansas

Khalil Herbert, Senior Running Back, #10

Hakeem Adeniji, Senior Tackle, #78

Kevin Feder, Senior Tackle, #67

Hasan Defense, Senior Cornerback, #13

Kyle Mayberry, Senior Cornerback, #8

Mike Lee, Senior Safety, #11

Bryce Torneden, Senior Safety, #1

 

Kansas hasn’t been the greatest team as of late, but the hiring of Les Miles brings some uncommon optimism to Lawrence.  However, it will take a few years for the talent Miles brings in to be draftable.  In the meantime, Adeniji looks to be solid tackle prospect.  Each of the members of the secondary, including one of the most apt names for a cornerback, have a chance to rise up through the ranks if they can turn in a solid performance in the pass-happy Big 12 conference.

 

BC

Ben Glines, Senior Running Back/Wide Receiver, #19

A.J. Dillon, Junior Running Back, #2

Travis Levy, Junior Running Back/Wide Receiver, #23

Kobay White, Junior Wide Receiver, #9

Chris Garrison, Senior Tight End, #81

Ben Petrula, Junior Guard, #64

John Phillips, Senior Guard, #70

Tanner Karafa, Senior Defensive Tackle, #48

John Lamot, Junior Linebacker, #28

Max Richardson, Junior Linebacker, #14

Isaiah McDuffie, Junior Linebacker, #55

Brandon Sebastian, Redshirt Sophomore Cornerback, #10

 

A.J. Dillon is the big name.  Literally huge.  He is a gargantuan running back whose running style reminds me of Marshawn Lynch.  Just a true punisher.  As expected, Petrula and Phillips seem to be the next pair good prospects in a long line of BC offensive line talent.  Sebastian had an impressive freshman season, and looks to build on that in his sophomore campaign.

 

Washington State University (20) at University of Houston, 9:15 PM, ESPN

 

Washington State

Anthony Gordon, Senior Quarterback, #18

Davontavean Martin, Junior Wide Receiver, #1

Dezmon Patmon, Senior Wide Receiver, #12

Easop Winston, Senior Wide Receiver, #8

Abraham Lucas, Redshirt Sophomore Tackle, #72

Frederick Mauigoa, Senior Center, #69

Lamonte McDougal, Redshirt Sophomore Defensive Tackle, #9

Willie Taylor III, Redshirt Sophomore Defensive End, #27

Nnamdi Oguayo, Senior Defensive End, #30

Dominick Silvels, Junior Defensive End, #20

Will Rodgers, Junior Defensive End, #92

Jahad Woods, Junior Linebacker, #13

 

Wazzu lost a lot of premiere talent last season, but they still have some good prospects left on the roster.  Lucas looks to replace Andre Dillard, but will likely take a season or two to reach his level.  Mauigoa leads the offensive line in the middle.  On defense, McDougal, Taylor, and Oguayo form a pretty fearsome threesome along the defensive line for other college teams, but it’s unknown whether any will transition into a pro defense.

 

Houston

D'Eriq King, Senior Quarterback, #4

Mulbah Car, Senior Running Back, #34

Patrick Carr, Senior Running Back, #21

Marquez Stevenson, Junior Wide Receiver, #5

Keith Corbin, Senior Wide Receiver, #2

Courtney Lark, Senior Wide Receiver, #9

Jarrid Williams, Senior Tackle, #62

Josh Jones, Senior Tackle, #74

Braylon Jones, Senior Guard, #52

Isaiah Chambers, Junior Defensive End, #94

Leroy Godfrey, Senior Linebacker, #4

Nathan Fox, Senior Linebacker, #54

Deontay Anderson, Junior Safety, #2

Gleson Sprewell, Junior Safety, #21

 

D’Eriq King has put up big stats in the vein of Kyler Murray, but he doesn’t seem to have quite the same level of talent.  Still, a team like Arizona who is looking for a backup quarterback to throw into the same system they are implementing for their starter might give King a late round look.  His main target, Lark, is the best prospect on the team.

 

Saturday, September 14

 

Kansas State University at Mississippi State University, 12:00 PM, ESPN

 

Kansas State

James Gilbert, Senior Running Back, #34

Dalton Schoen, Senior Wide Receiver, #83

Scott Frantz, Senior Tackle, #74

Tyler Mitchell, Senior Guard, #62

Adam Holtorf, Senior Center, #79

Wyatt Hubert, Redshirt Sophomore Defensive End, #56

Reggie Walker, Senior Defensive End, #51

Elijah Sullivan, Senior Linebacker, #3

Da'Quan Patton, Senior Linebacker, #5

Justin Hughes, Senior Linebacker, #32

Denzel Goolsby, Senior Safety, #20

 

Kansas State is more like a Big Ten school than a Big 12 school.  They focus on strong line play and strong defense.  That is shown in their top prospects, which include three strong offensive linemen (Frantz, Mitchell, and Holtorf) and three solid defenders (Hubert, Sullivan, and Patton).

 

Mississippi State

Tommy Stevens, Senior Quarterback, #7

Kylin Hill, Junior Running Back, #8

Osirus Mitchell, Junior Wide Receiver, #5

Stephen Guidry, Senior Wide Receiver, #1

Isaiah Zuber, Senior Wide Receiver, #12

Farrod Green, Senior Tight End, #82

Greg Eiland, Junior Tackle, #55

Stewart Reese, Junior Tackle/Guard, #51

Michael Story, Senior Guard, #75

Tyre Phillips, Senior Guard, #78

Darryl Williams, Senior Center, #73

Lee Autry, Senior Defensive Tackle, #90

Chauncey Rivers, Senior Defensive End, #5

Marquiss Spencer, Junior Defensive End, #42

Fletcher Adams, Senior Defensive End, #43

Erroll Thompson, Junior Linebacker, #40

Willie Gay Jr., Junior Linebacker, #6

Leo Lewis, Senior Linebacker, #10

Tim Washington, Senior Linebacker, #41

Cameron Dantzler, Junior Cornerback, #3

Jaquarius Landrews, Senior Safety, #11

Brian Cole, Senior Safety, #32

 

It’s difficult to overcome the loss of three first round defensive prospects, but Mississippi State will give it the old college try.  Guidry is the top weapon for the Bulldogs, while Story, Reese, and Williams give Mississippi State one of the better offensive lines in the country.  Spencer will see what he can do when defenses pay him more attention with Montez Sweat no longer playing opposite him.  Gay is one of the stronger linebackers in the linebacker-rich SEC.

 

Arkansas State University at University of Georgia (3), 12:00 PM, ESPN 2

 

Arkansas State

Kirk Merritt, Senior Wide Receiver, #13

Dahu Green, Senior Wide Receiver, #4

Omar Bayless, Senior Wide Receiver, #7

Forrest Merrill, Senior Defensive Tackle, #92

Kevin Thurmon, Senior Defensive Tackle, #15

William Bradley-King, Junior Defensive End, #50

Darreon Jackson, Senior Safety, #34

B.J. Edmonds, Senior Safety, #3

 

While Arkansas State has a surprising amount of players that can impact a given game, Bradley-King is really the only draftable prospect at this point in time.  However, this should go to show that Arkansas State has some talent, and might be a tougher out for Georgia than one might expect.

 

Georgia

Jake Fromm, Junior Quarterback, #11

D'Andre Swift, Junior Running Back, #7

Brian Herrien, Senior Running Back, #35

Tyler Simmons, Senior Wide Receiver, #87

Matt Landers, Redshirt Sophomore Wide Receiver, #5

Demetris Robertson, Junior Wide Receiver, #16

Lawrence Cager, Senior Wide Receiver, #15

Charlie Woerner, Senior Tight End, #89

Eli Wolf, Senior Tight End, #17

Andrew Thomas, Junior Tackle, #71

Isaiah Wilson, Redshirt Sophomore Tackle, #79

Solomon Kindley, Junior Guard, #66

Ben Cleveland, Junior Guard, #74

Tyler Clark, Senior Defensive Tackle, #52

Julian Rochester, Senior Defensive Tackle, #5

Malik Herring, Junior Defensive End, #10

Monty Rice, Junior Linebacker, #32

Tae Crowder, Senior Linebacker, #30

Eric Stokes, Redshirt Sophomore Cornerback, #27

Tyrique McGhee, Senior Cornerback, #26

J.R. Reed, Senior Safety, #20

Richard LeCounte III, Junior Safety, #2

 

Don’t expect Arkansas State to win, though.  Georgia is one of the most talented teams in the entire country, with impact players on every level of the offense and defense.  Jake Fromm is in contention for best quarterback not named Tua or Justin.  D’Andre Swift is one of the most impressive running backs in the country.  Simmons, Landers, and Robertson aren’t quite Mecole Hardman and Calvin Ridley, but they are still good prospects in their own right.  Woerner is the tight end to watch.  Thomas is the best tackle in the nation. Wilson, Kindley, and Cleveland are all very good offensive line prospects.  I mean, this offense could probably put up some points on the Miami Dolphins.  On defense, Herring, Rice, and Stokes are decent, but the true talent lies with safeties Reed and LeCounte.

 

Stanford University at University of Central Florida (17), 3:30 PM, CBS

 

Stanford

K.J. Costello, Junior Quarterback, #3

Cameron Scarlett, Senior Running Back, #22

Colby Parkinson, Junior Tight End, #84

Walker Little, Junior Tackle, #72

Devery Hamilton, Junior Tackle, #74

Michael Williams, Junior Defensive Tackle, #57

Jovan Swann, Senior Defensive Tackle, #51

Gabe Reid, Redshirt Sophomore Linebacker, #90

Casey Toohill, Senior Linebacker, #52

Jordan Fox, Junior Linebacker, #10

Paulson Adebo, Redshirt Sophomore Cornerback, #11

Obi Eboh, Junior Cornerback, #22

 

You know the names by now.  Parkinson on offense.  Adebo on defense.  Costello and Little have a good shot to be drafted as well, but Stanford is all about their two potential first round talents. 

 

UCF

Brandon Wimbush, Senior Quarterback, #3

Greg McRae, Junior Running Back, #30

Adrian Killins, Senior Running Back, #9

Marlon Williams, Junior Wide Receiver, #6

Tre Nixon, Junior Wide Receiver, #16

Gabriel Davis, Junior Wide Receiver, #13

Trevor Elbert, Senior Tackle, #79

Josh McMullen, Senior Tackle, #60

Jake Brown, Senior Tackle, #77

Cole Schneider, Redshirt Sophomore Guard, #65

Jordan Johnson, Senior Center, #72

Brendon Hayes, Senior Defensive Tackle, #6

Malik Barrow, Junior Defensive Tackle, #95

Nate Evans, Senior Linebacker, #44

Nevelle Clarke, Senior Cornerback, #14

Brandon Moore, Junior Cornerback, #20

Richie Grant, Junior Safety, #27

Jordan Hayes, Senior Safety, #11

Antwan Collier, Junior Safety, #3

 

UCF has gone a combined 25-1 over 2017 and 2018, and have started 2019 undefeated.  The big knock is that they do not play in a Power 5 conference and do not schedule good Power 5 teams in their non-conference schedule.  That seems to be changing this year.  Davis is their main weapon on offense, while Schneider holds the line.  On defense, it is the safety tandem of Grant and Collier that look to be playing on Sunday.

 

University of Iowa (19) at Iowa State University, 4:00 PM, FS1

 

Iowa

Nathan Stanley, Senior Quarterback, #4

Mekhi Sargent, Junior Running Back, #10

Brady Ross, Senior Fullback, #36

Ihmir Smith-Marsette, Junioe Wide Receiver, #6

Shaun Beyer, Junior Tight End, #42

Nate Wieting, Senior Tight End, #39

Tristan Wirfs, Junior Tackle, #74

Alaric Jackson, Junior Tackle, #77

Levi Paulsen, Senior Guard, #66

Landan Paulsen, Senior Guard, #68

Brady Reiff, Senior Defensive Tackle, #91

Cedrick Lattimore, Senior Defensive Tackle, #95

Daviyon Nixon, Junior Defensive Tackle, #54

A.J. Epenesa, Junior Defensive End, #94

Chauncey Gholston, Junior Defensive End, #57

Djimon Colberts, Redshirt Sophomore Linebacker, #32

Kristian Welch, Senior Linebacker, #34

Matt Hankins, Junior Cornerback, #8

Michael Ojemudia, Senior Cornerback, #11

Geno Stone, Junior Safety, #9

 

Ahhh.  Farmageddon.  The Battle for the Cy-Hawk Trophy.  For Iowans, it doesn’t get bigger than this.  From a talent standpoint, Iowa has the upper hand.  Stanley, at his peak, flashes Ben Roethlisberger, but is too inconsistent to be more than a Day 3 pick at this point.  Mekhi Sargent is a player some fans may know from “Last Chance U,” where he torched Independence Community College in the first game of season 3.  He has continued this big play ability at Iowa.  Smith-Marsette and Beyer might get late round looks.  However, the strength for the Hawkeyes, as usual, falls along the lines.  Wirfs and Jackson could both be first round prospects at tackle.  Meanwhile, the Paulsen twins are like if the twins from “The Replacements” were taken from a biker gang.  Even with the two first round tackles, the best prospect for Iowa is A.J. Epenesa, a top-5 overall prospect who has a chance to be the first name called in April.  Nixon, Colberts, Welch, and Stone round out a surprisingly talented Iowa team.

 

Iowa State

La'Michael Pettway, Senior Wide Receiver, #7

Deshaunte Jones, Senior Wide Receiver, #8

Chase Allen, Junior Tight End, #11

Bryce Meeker, Senior Tackle, #74

Josh Knipfel, Senior Guard, #66

Julian Good-Jones, Senior Center, #51

Ray Lima, Senior Defensive Tackle, #58

JaQuan Bailey, Senior Defensive End, #3

Eyioma Uwazurike, Junior Defensive End, #5

Matt Leo, Senior Defensive End, #89

Marcel Spears, Senior Linebacker, #42

Justin Bickham, Senior Cornerback, #7

Braxton Lewis, Senior Cornerback, #33

Greg Eisworth, Junior Safety, #12

 

What Iowa State lacks in talent, they make up for with grit.  Allen might be the best prospect on the team in a weak tight end class, while Knipfel and Good-Jones give Iowa State a solid offensive line pairing of their own.

 

University of Hawai'i at University of Washington, 7:30 PM, PAC 12 Network

 

Hawai'i

Cole McDonald, Quarterback, Junior, #13

Dayton Furuta, Running Back, Senior, #7

JoJo Ward, Wide Receiver, Senior, #9

Cedric Byrd II, Wide Receiver, Senior, #6

J.R. Hensley, Guard, Senior, #57

Samiuela Akoteu, Defensive Tackle, Senior, #91

Kaimana Padello, Defensive End, Senior, #34

Soloman Matautia, Linebacker, Senior, #27

Rojesterman Farris II, Cornerback, Senior, #4

Kalen Hicks, Safety, Senior, #3

Ikem Okeke, Safety, Senior, #22

 

Everyone’s favorite quarterback to watch, Cole McDonald, gets potentially his toughest matchup of the season when he squares off against the always tough Washington secondary.  His wide receivers, Ward and Byrd, are also decently strong prospects in their own right, with Ward being a threat on the outside and with Byrd being a strong, shifty option out of the slot. 

 

Washington

Jacob Eason, Junior Quarterback, #10

Salvon Ahmed, Junior Quarterback, #26

Aaron Fuller, Senior Wide Receiver, #2

Andre Baccellia, Senior Wide Receiver, #5

Quinten Pounds, Senior Wide Receiver, #21

Hunter Bryant, Junior Tight End, #1

Cade Otton, Redshirt Sophomore Tight End, #21

Trey Adams, Senior Tackle, #72

Henry Roberts, Senior Guard, #59

Henry Bainivalu, Redshirt Sophomore Guard, #66

Nick Harris, Senior Center, #56

Levi Onwuzurike, Junior Defensive Tackle, #95

Josiah Bronson, Senior Defensive Tackle, #90

Benning Potoa'e, Senior Defensive End, #8

Ryan Bowman, Junior Linebacker, #55

Myles Bryant, Senior Cornerback, #5

Elijah Molden, Junior Cornerback, #3

Keith Taylor, Junior Cornerback, #27

Brandon McKinney, Junior Safety, #23

 

Washington is proving to be more offense-oriented this season than in year’s past, with Eason, Ahmed, and Otton all playing very well so far. Adams has stayed healthy thus far, which is good for his overall outlook.  Harris, his teammate on the inside, has also had a strong season so far. Onwuzurike looks to be playing more naturally this season, which is good considering how awkward everything looked for him last season.  And as always, the secondary for Washington is a force to be reckoned with.

 

Clemson University at Syracuse University, 7:30 PM, ABC

 

Clemson

Trevor Lawrence, True Sophomore Quarterback, #16

Travis Etienne, Junior Running Back, #9

Darien Rencher, Junior Running Back, #21

Tee Higgins, Junior Wide Receiver, #5

Justyn Ross, True Sophomore Wide Receiver, #8

Diondre Overton, Senior Wide Receiver, #14

Amari Rodgers, Junior Wide Receiver, #3

Tremayne Anchrum, Senior Tackle, #73

John Simpson, Senior Guard, #74

Sean Pollard, Senior Guard, #76

Gage Cervenka, Senior Center, #59

Nyles Pinckney, Junior Defensive Tackle, #44

Xavier Kelly, Junior Defensive Tackle, #22

Jordan Williams, Redshirt Sophomore Defensive Tackle, #59

Justin Foster, Junior Defensive End, #35

Isaiah Simmons, Junior Linebacker/Safety, #11

A.J. Terrell, Junior Cornerback, #8

K'Von Wallace, Senior Safety, #12

Denzel Johnson, Senior Safety, #14

Tanner Muse, Senior Safety, #19

 

Can anyone give Clemson a run for their money this year?  After Syracuse got crushed by Maryland, I’m thinking this will not be the week Clemson is challenged.  Trevor Lawrence and Justyn Ross, while not draft-eligible, are good enough that they still need to be watched.  Etienne and Higgins are a truly dynamic draft-eligible duo of skill position players for the Tigers. Simpson and Pollard give Clemson a strong interior offensive line.  On defense, Williams and Foster look to fill the void left by the amazing Clemson defensive line of 2018, but are not likely to reach that peak this season.  Isaiah Simmons is easily the best prospect on the Clemson defense, but Terrell is not terribly far behind.  Wallace and Muse are late round flyers.

 

Syracuse

Abdul Adams, Junior Running Back, #23

Moe Neal, Senior Running Back, #21

Otto Zaccardo, Senior Running Back, #29

Sean Riley, Senior Wide Receiver, #1

Evan Adams, Senior Guard, #63

Kenneth Ruff, Senior Defensive Tackle, #45

McKinley Williams, Senior Defensive Tackle, #98

Alton Robinson, Senior Defensive End, #94

Kendall Coleman, Senior Defensive End, #55

Scoop Bradshaw, Senior Cornerback, #18

Christopher Fredrick, Senior Cornerback, #3

Evan Foster, Senior Safety, #9

 

Syracuse had some good talent in 2018, but in 2019, they are pretty much left with just their defensive ends, Robinson and Coleman.  Nobody else is draftable at this point.

 

Portland State University at Boise State University, 10:15 PM, ESPN 2

 

Portland State

Charlie Taumoepeau, Senior Tight End, #89

 

That’s right!  Portland State has a prospect!  Taumoepeau will get the national spotlight, so let’s see what he makes of it.

 

Boise State

John Hightower, Senior Wide Receiver, #16

CT Thomas, Junior Wide Receiver, #6

Ezra Cleveland, Junior Tackle, #76

Eric Quevedo, Senior Guard, #79

John Molchon, Senior Guard, #77

Garrett Larson, Senior Center, #67

David Moa, Senior Defensive Tackle, #55

Curtis Weaver, Junior Defensive End, #99

Kekoa Nawahine, Senior Safety, #10

 

The typically offensive-driven Broncos actually have a stronger defense this season than offense.  Their only prospect on offense is the receiver Hightower.  On defense, Moa and Weaver are the two best prospects on the Boise State team, and give the Broncos their best defensive line in a long time.

 

Texas Tech University at University of Arizona, 10:30 PM, ESPN

 

Texas Tech

R.J. Turner, Senior Wide Receiver, #2

T.J. Vasher, Junior Wide Receiver, #9

McLane Mannix, Junior Wide Receiver, #13

Terence Steele, Senior Tackle, #78

Travis Bruffy, Senior Tackle, #79

Jack Anderson, Junior Guard, #56

Madison Akamnonu, Senior Guard, #58

Broderick Washington, Senior Defensive Tackle, #96

Lonzell Gilmore, Senior Defensive End, #94

Eli Howard, Junior Defensive End, #53

Jordyn Brooks, Senior Linebacker, #1

 

The Kliff Kingsbury era has ended at Texas Tech, but the mentality hasn’t.  Texas Tech is still a spread out, high flying offense, and they have the receives to make it work in Vasher and Mannix.  Outside of these two, though there isn’t much to speak of in Lubbock.

 

Arizona

Khalil Tate, Quarterback, Senior, #14

J.J. Taylor, Running Back, Senior, #21

Cody Creason, Guard, Senior, #76

Justin Belknap, Defensive End, Senior, #86

Colin Schooler, Linebacker, Junior, #7

Jace Whittaker, Cornerback, Senior, #17

Lorenzo Burns, Cornerback, Junior, #2

Tristan Cooper, Safety, Senior, #31

 

The talent level at Arizona has really gone downhill.  J.J. Taylor is likely the strongest prospect at this school, and even he is going to need a standout season to be drafted.  The most exciting name on this list is Khalil Tate, a classic story of an athlete as a quarterback who just doesn’t have the accuracy and nuance as a quarterback to succeed in the NFL.

 

 

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