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DKphin
04-05-2010, 07:16 PM
If, like the writer says, Haden drops and is there when we pick, we have to take him. IMHO, he could come in Day1 and be a starting FS. Let Vontae and Sean man the corners and Haden can roam the backfield. Haden hits like a ton of bricks. He may not have run that well at Indy(4.53 is not bad, but not what he was hoping for), but it is a notoriously slow track and he ran better at his Pro Day. Joe's football IQ is off the charts and on top of that he has no character issues, unlike some of the people that have been mentioned with our pick at twelve. I've watched every game he has played duiring his time at UF and it would be foolish to pass him up.
Two interesting items of note:
1) The Gators held a three-ring circus, otherwise known as Pro Day, on March 17 for all 32 NFL teams. But a few of the Gators’ draft-eligible players could not participate because of injuries. So Florida will hold essentially a second Pro Day this Wednesday at The Swamp (though a UF spokesman said the school isn’t calling it a Pro Day) for guys like Jermaine Cunningham (shoulder), Brandon James (foot) and Ryan Stamper (ankle) and anyone else who wants to improve his stock (ahem, cough, Brandon Spikes, cough).
Fox Sports writes that the Lions, Saints, Jets and Rams (http://msn.foxsports.com/nfl/story/nfl-hearsay-early-april-draft-buzz) are “anxious” to see Cunningham workout this week.
2) All season long it was a foregone conclusion that the Gators would have two top-10 picks — Carlos Dunlap and Joe Haden. Well Haden is probably a long-shot at this point, especially since the team most likely to pick him early, the Browns, just traded for CB Shelden Brown. And Dunlap, once considered by Mel Kiper to be the No. 3 overall prospect, isn’t even listed in Kiper’s top five DEFENSIVE ENDS (http://insider.espn.go.com/nfl/draft10/insider/news/story?id=5044187) because of inconsistent play on his game film.
Here is what I believe to be the current draft stock of the top 12 draft-eligible Gators, in alphabetical order:

WR Riley Cooper (Stock: Neutral) — His big showing came at the Senior Bowl. Ran a 4.55 in the 40 at the Combine and opted not to run at Pro Day. Scouts love his size, blocking skills and ability to make circus catches, but he needs to stop dropping the easy ones. Prediction: 4th Round
DE Jermaine Cunningham (Stock: Neutral) — Cunningham is one of the Gators’ most intriguing prospects because he hasn’t worked out much since the season due to injury. At 6-foot-4, 266, Cunningham is versatile enough to play LDE in a 4-3 or, more likely, the pass-rushing OLB in a 3-4. The NFL is a “pass rusher’s league,” as scouts like to say, so expect Cunningham to come off the board early if he has a good showing this week. Prediction: Early 2nd round
DE Carlos Dunlap (Stock: Dropping) — Dunlap has always had motor problems, and now scouts are starting to catch on. He actually has performed well in Combine drills — a 4.69 in Indianapolis and a 4.59 at Pro Day — but NFL.com analyst Mike Mayock sees him slipping to the second round (http://blogs.nfl.com/2010/03/17/mayock-tebow-not-lone-star-in-gainesville/) because of his consistency issues (and not his DUI). But like I said before, the NFL is a pass-rusher’s league, and Dunlap has freakish skills when he wants to use them. Prediction: Late first round
CB Joe Haden (Stock: Neutral) — Haden took a beating at the Combine when he ran a 4.57 in the 40, but said he was competing with a back injury and made amends with a 4.44 at Pro Day. He’s still considered the top cornerback in the draft (http://insider.espn.go.com/nfl/draft10/insider/news/story?id=5044187), but may not be as “elite” as originally thought. And Cleveland’s acquisition of Brown doesn’t bode well for the Browns taking a cornerback seventh overall. Prediction: Middle first round
TE Aaron Hernandez (Stock: Rising) — Six-foot-two tight ends usually aren’t considered elite prospects, but Hernandez has done everything and more to prove that he can make an instant impact in the NFL — ran a 4.58 and 4.63, put up 30 reps of 225 in the bench press and displayed good hands, crisp route-running and elusive moves during workouts. And then you see this statement from Mayock (http://blogs.nfl.com/2010/03/17/mayock-tebow-not-lone-star-in-gainesville/): “has some off-the-field issues.” Hmmmm. Then again, those “off-the-field issues” didn’t seem to affect Percy Harvin’s performance much in 2009 (and Hernandez is supposed to work out for the Vikings this week). Prediction: Early second round
RB/KR Brandon James (Stock: Neutral) — Going to have trouble sneaking into the back end of the draft, given his size (5-foot-6), lack of production in 2009 (324 total yards of offense, 7.4 yards per punt return) and his inability to work out for teams because of the foot injury. Prediction: Undrafted free agent
WR David Nelson (Stock: Rising) — No one outside of Tebow helped himself more at Pro Day than Nelson, who ran a 4.57 and posted 38 inches in the broad jump in front of the scouts. Add in his 6-foot-5 size, solid downfield blocking skills, familiarity with special teams and solid character, and Nelson is suddenly an intriguing draft prospect (http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2010/writers/don_banks/04/02/list/index.html?eref=sihp). Prediction: Sixth round
C Maurkice Pouncey (Stock: Neutral) — Pouncey’s stock is neutral only because he’s always been considered one of the top interior linemen in the draft. Kiper has him as the top-rated center, and Mayock considers him an (http://blogs.nfl.com/2010/03/17/mayock-tebow-not-lone-star-in-gainesville/) “immediate starter who won’t be overwhelmed.” Idaho G Mike Iupati will probably be the first interior lineman selected, and Pouncey will likely go soon after. Prediction: Mid-to-late first round
LB Brandon Spikes (Stock: Falling FAST) — Spikes could have left UF after 2008 and been a first or second round pick. Now after a mediocre 2009 season and horrible performances in Combine drills, Spikes will be lucky to get selected in the second round and maybe even the second DAY. Spikes ran a ghastly 5.05 at Pro Day, and followed it up with a 5.07 in his second try. He’s never been fast, but he was slow and out of shape for much of 2009 because of a lingering ankle injury, and it has carried over to his pre-draft workouts. Spikes’ distant cousin, 49ers linebacker Takeo Spikes, even said that Spikes could fall all the way to the fourth round (http://www.mercurynews.com/49ers/ci_14790104?nclick_check=1). But Spikes is also a very intelligent and studious linebacker (he kept several binders full of notes and wore No. 51 to honor his favorite linebacker, Dick Butkus), so someone will grab him before long. Prediction: Third round
LB Ryan Stamper (Stock: Neutral) — Stamper was the Gators’ defensive MVP in 2009 and is smart enough to play all of the linebacker positions and excel on special teams. But he’s not very fast or physical. He’ll need a good showing this week to sneak into the end of the draft. He’ll definitely be in an NFL camp this fall, but sticking around will be a longshot. Prediction: Undrafted free agent
QB Tim Tebow (Stock: Up) — Dropped to the third-fourth round with his poor performance during Senior Bowl week, but has impressed a lot of scouts in the weeks since with his physical stature and ability to learn quickly. We’ve covered Tebow ad naseum (http://blogs.palmbeachpost.com/gatorbytes/tag/tim-tebow/), so no need to go in-depth now. But I’ll say this — Tebow will go higher than expected, perhaps as high as No. 9 to the Bills, and Todd McShay’s head will explode on live TV. Prediction: Late first round (if Buffalo doesn’t take him at 9. Yes, I know that’s a cop out. Sue me.)
S Major Wright (Stock: Up) — Wright is another player who has done well for himself in workouts since deciding to forgo his final season at Florida. Ran a highly respectable 4.48 at the Combine, has always been known as a big thumper, and at 6-foot, 204 pounds, has the necessary size to play safety at the next level. Leaving school early was probably a smart move, because his stock would probably only drop. He is training in Delray Beach and has a workout scheduled with the Miami Dolphins this week. Prediction: Fourth round
http://blogs.palmbeachpost.com/gatorbytes/2010/04/04/taking-another-look-at-the-gators-nfl-draft-prospects-with-17-days-to-go/

ckparrothead
04-05-2010, 07:20 PM
But Spikes is also a very intelligent and studious linebacker (he kept several binders full of notes and wore No. 51 to honor his favorite linebacker, Dick Butkus)

Shades of Zach Thomas right there. Not the biggest, not the fastest, but he studied like hell.

DKphin
04-05-2010, 08:07 PM
Joe Haden, getting a lot of hype. Is he as good as people are saying?
http://www.finheaven.com/images/imported/2010/04/haden236x300-1.jpgHaden has a reputation for good ball skills/USA Today

DJ: I really like him. I want to see how big he in person, but he’s really good on tape. Reminds me a lot of Leon Hall (http://www.nfl.com/players/leonhall/profile?id=HAL432931). He’s really tough, sticks his face in the mix. He’s got great ball skills. I don’t think he’s going be one of these 6-foot-1 freaks of nature that you would see as a top 5 pick, but I don’t think he’ll last til 12 or 13. If he blows up the combine he could go in the top 5.
You really like him as a blitzer too?
DJ: Oh he’s really good when he comes in off the edge. He’s not only able to get there, he can separate the football. That’s what Charles Woodson (http://www.nfl.com/players/charleswoodson/profile?id=WOO661523) made famous. The elite guys don’t just get there, they get the ball out. It shows you he’s fast enough to get there, he’s tough enough to get the guy and he’s football smart enough to get the ball out, so that’s a pretty good sign.
http://blogs.palmbeachpost.com/gatorbytes/2010/02/24/qa-breaking-down-the-gators-nfl-combine-prospects-with-daniel-jeremiah-of-move-the-sticks/

Chubby
04-05-2010, 09:01 PM
Shades of Zach Thomas right there. Not the biggest, not the fastest, but he studied like hell.
I think Spikes will do much better in the NFL then some people give him credit for. People are knocking him because of his speed.

He is 1. A hitter 2. a very very smart football player. If the Giants dont pick up McClain early i beleive spikes will be a Giant. Where imo will be the perfect system for him to play in.

I think his 1 big negative his lack of finishing some tackles or over hitting a player. If he can get coached up Giants might be getting a steal in the 2nd round. Also at times he tends to make the plays 5-6 yards down the field instead of at the line or behind the line. Dont know if this was a product of the vanilla Gator Defense, coaching or his ability.
Chubbs

DefensiveEnd76
04-05-2010, 09:09 PM
Haden is NOT a Free Safety. He is 5'11" 193 pounds and excelled as a Cornerback. Why would you want to draft him and then move him to safety??

DKphin
04-05-2010, 11:25 PM
Haden is NOT a Free Safety. He is 5'11" 193 pounds and excelled as a Cornerback. Why would you want to draft him and then move him to safety??
He may not fit the "so-called" ideal size requirements for the position, but he can play either position in the defensive backfield. He is too talented to pass up if he is available at 12. I'm just thinking of the best way to get him on the field if he is on the board. We are not going to shift Smith to FS because the guy has never met a tackle he liked. Plus if Smith does not develop more physicality at his position and tackling continues to be a hindrance, Joe can seamlessly move and take over that position if in the future we need him to make the move.

nolefin
04-05-2010, 11:27 PM
funny thing is brad i was thinking the other day that we could draft him and move him to FS. he is a stud wherever he plays.

DKphin
04-05-2010, 11:28 PM
Also, if you argue that the flip flop did not work with Jason Allen. Main difference, Allen is a moron. Haden is not.

nolefin
04-05-2010, 11:29 PM
but is he going to be better than earl thomas at FS ? thats the question. plus i dont see parcells using #12 on a DB he will probably go pass rusher.

nolefin
04-05-2010, 11:31 PM
i get the feeling they want a bigger hard hitting safety, someone like jones from georgia or the guy from georgia tech.

DKphin
04-05-2010, 11:36 PM
but is he going to be better than earl thomas at FS ? thats the question. plus i dont see parcells using #12 on a DB he will probably go pass rusher.
This regime always talks about position flexibility and Haden would fit that requirement. I'm not going to argue taking Haden over Thomas because they are both very talented and I would be very pleased with either player. But, I feel, Joe is just too talented to pass. JMHO.:D

DKphin
04-05-2010, 11:38 PM
i get the feeling they want a bigger hard hitting safety, someone like jones from georgia or the guy from georgia tech.
Believe me, Joe hits like a ton of bricks.