2012 FSU Defense and the Draft

No matter how well informed or uninformed Seminole fans are we seem to brag constantly about the number of NFL players we have on our defense. I heard a rival fan say to fellow nole “hey you just told me you have twelve top 10 players.” Clearly this was a joke but there is a bit of reality in that situation. What I would like to do is put down on paper my thoughts on various players draft potential and my reasoning behind those thoughts. I will go in order. Many of my thoughts surrounding certain players are extremely different than the general census and I will do my best to explain my thinking.

1. Werner – First off I think Werner leaves after this year. To me he looks like a top 10 player that could sneak into the top five. Werner is physically what every NFL wants at DE. He can get after the QB, he is stout against the run and plays very smart. To me he’ll remind GMs of JJ Watt which will only help his cause. Werner's only drawback is he’s a LDE and doesn’t possess supernatural quickness. This will not detract from his NFL production due to his incredible punch coupled with good quickness.

2. Jones - 2nd Round pick and I think there is a chance he returns for his senior year. CJ is great player but we don’t showcase him as a pass rusher which will hamper his draft status. His coverage skills and ability to play strong against the run will get him selected in the first round. In addition, he is incredible athlete.

3. Carradine – 2nd Round to 4th Round. The reality is there isn’t very much film on Tank in big games going against elite competition. Physically, he looks the part and flashes top 60 skills. I can’t see him slipping out of the 4th round on ability alone. He’s a tougher player to forecast. In addition, he plays a position that coaches reach at. Negatives for Tank are he doesn’t possess a lighting fast first step or incredible strength but both areas are pretty good. In addition, he could be an every down player which is very important.

4. Joyner – 2nd to 3rd Round. All-World Safety with return skills would be a top 10 pick if he was three inches taller. He needs to weigh over 190 pounds when he reports to the combine. His film and his ability to cover an enormous amount of space will lead to team taking him in the second round. In addition, he can play a little nickel if you need him to. Joyner is a guy I wouldn’t be surprised if a team reaches for and he proves them right for doing it. The guy can do four things really well (Coverage, Play Nickel, Return Kicks & Erase Others Mistakes)

5. Rhodes – 2nd Round to 4th Round. Big Corner who can play bump and run against strong WRs but lacks elite hips which prevent him from being a truly elite corner. He gets beat too often to be a 1st round corner but would almost be an ideal cover 2 corner. Another detractor would be his lack of ability to play nickel back.

6. Dawkins – 3rd to 5th Round. Nice player who can apply pressure from the 3T and is good against the run. Dawkins will have a long NFL career if he keeps his weight up. I really like him as a NFL player because I think he gets it and those guys stay in the league forever.

7. McCloud – 4th to 7th Round. A solid 1-T NG who will definitely make a team but a non-pass rush 1-T traditionally don’t get drafted high. Everyone needs a couple but it’s a tough position to draft outside of the 5th round unless the guy can get to the QB.

8. Moody – 5th to 7th Round. He's a head hunting linebacker with decent to good LB cover skills. IMHO, Moody will be drafted as project and a special teams player. It would not surprise me if he starts at some point in the NFL. He was an average college safety but his measurable are closer to a 1-2nd round LB than a free agent LB. Plus he’s a demon on special teams.

9. Williams – 6th Round to Free Agent. Strong player against the run but his hips will really hamper his NFL stock. He may get drafted by a team that needs some help against the run. I may be a bit generous in his grade but the NFL raids top notch NFL programs.

I’m awaiting more info on
1. Brooks
2. Telvin Smith
3. Waisome
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