Thursday, October 22, 2015

Checking in on the 2016 Draft

As we approach November, we now have enough information from this college football season to begin to sort through early versions of the "watch list" for the 2016 draft.

Again, some disclaimers:

1) - I am not a scout or a draft service.  I don't claim to compile databases all year long.  Instead, we will study prospects in the spring time on an individual basis to compare them against others on this list.  But, I do hope to get you a top 75 list by the time April rolls around.  It is a great hobby of mine that many seem to enjoy.

2) - Therefore, the names below are not my selections, but rather those from experts whom I trust, scouts I talk with, and a sprinkle of the personal "eye ball" test.

3) - There is no question there are some on the lists we have put together that will end up not being drafted in the top 200 picks.  There are others who are not listed here that will go in the first round.  It happens every year and I am guessing 2016 will be no different.

4) - No, I don't hate your school or cheer for your rival.   I just like football.

As opposed to doing a really long list today, I thought I would break things down into positional groups and especially - given the disappointing start to the Cowboys season - the positions we are thinking the Cowboys may be targeting in the first 2 rounds, if in fact, things continue as they currently are.

I hope nobody takes offense to those positions that Dallas might wish to consider being listed in the following fashion:

QB - It is time to consider the real possibility that they might need a Romo succession plan in place.
RB - The front office's theory that "anyone can run behind this OL" might need a reconsider.
WR - With Dez Bryant out, it sure appears the Cowboys need more juice at WR.

I admit that safety is another spot to consider, but let's keep the theme to offensive skill guys for today's exercise.  With that in mind, let's focus on those 3 spots today and see what might be around in the Top 2 rounds:


Name School Jersey # Notes
Jared Goff California 16 Best QB I have seen all year, JR
Connor Cook Michigan St 18 A close 2nd place.  Both Top 10 picks?
Christian Hackenberg Penn St 14 Has not had a good year at all, JR
Paxton Lynch Memphis 12 6'7 with that arm? Another JR
Cardale Jones Ohio St 12 Rough start and benched at OSU, JR
Gunner Kiel  Cincinnati 11 Hurt in Sept, then benched.  JR
Seth Russell Baylor 17 Dazzling, but 1st year and another JR

As you can see, candidates for the top 2 rounds are pretty much contingent on a lot of Juniors - many of whom are not having great years - deciding to get into this draft.

Goff and Cook are absolutely legitimate prospects, but in this world where QBs get moved up, I am not sure there is much here right now for a Dallas pick in the middle of the round.  Long ways to go, but there are the potential Top 2 round guys that I have compiled.

Now, on to Running Back.


Name School Jersey # Notes
Ezekiel Elliott Ohio St 15 He continues to produce at top level
Derrick Henry Alabama 2 Giant Size and sprinter speed.
Devontae Booker Utah 23 Plenty of tools, a bit smaller
Corey Clement Wisconsin 6 Has hardly played with injuries

This group is of course missing LSU's Leonard Fournette, Oregon's Royce Freeman, Florida State's Dalvin Cook, and Georgia's Nick Chubb (injured) because they are all Sophomores, as well as a number of draft eligibles who have been hurt like Pitt's James Conner and Arkansas' Jonathan Williams.  We also should keep a close eye on TCU's Aaron Green who might rise into this area.

But, those top two prospects are very legitimate franchise RB candidates.  


Name School Jersey # Notes
Laquan Treadwell Mississippi 1 Has been at top of class all year
Josh Doctson TCU 9 An amazing 2015 has pushed him way up
Corey Coleman Baylor 1 So productive and explosive
Michael Thomas Ohio St 3 Quiet year, but highly touted
Tyler Boyd Pittsburgh 23 Suspension, but still up in top mix

By the way, we know way more than 5 Wide Receivers will go in the Top 2 rounds because they always do, but these 5 seem to be in that first tier.  There are literally 20 others who could still join this group because the NFL needs WRs who can "add juice" every year.

So there you have it.  Like I said, this will be amusing to consider in 6 months, but as far as I can tell, here is what we are looking at right now.

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