August 14, 2022

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Omar Kelly: Prime gamers nonetheless out there on Day 2 of 2022 NFL draft

The primary spherical of the 2022 NFL draft was filled with surprises, included loads of trades, and featured a couple of head-scratching choices.

A few of these shocking picks left loads of the draft’s top-rated gamers nonetheless out there for Day 2, which is able to function rounds two and three.

Listed below are one of the best gamers nonetheless on the board on the second day of the draft, which begins Friday evening at 7 p.m.:

Georgia linebacker Nakobe Dean

Regardless of being a tad undersized (6-0, 225), Dean was the center of the Georgia protection. He’s a rangy playmaker who fires into gaps and strikes defenders. The one issues about his sport middle on his dimension and the likelihood that he may be pressured to run round blocks within the NFL.

Liberty quarterback Malik Willis

Willis has a cannon for an arm, and may threaten defenses along with his legs. He has the pace and athleticism wanted to select up chunk yardage, and proved that by speeding for two,131 yards throughout his school profession. The largest concern is that he has sloppy mechanics, and doesn’t assault the center of the sphere persistently.

Clemson cornerback Andrew Sales space Jr.

Sales space, who pulled down 5 interceptions in his final two seasons at Clemson, has good dimension (6-0, 194), lengthy arms and unfastened hips. He performs the place with the arrogance, and route recognition a cornerback must cowl elite receivers. Downside is, he was solely a one-year starter at Clemson.

Georgia cornerback Derion Kendrick

Kendrick is a high-ceiling prospect who has the kind of aggressive demeanor to play at an All-Professional stage in time, and he has wonderful physique management. Groups should get previous a couple of character issues for him to grow to be a top-50 choice.

Washington cornerback Kyler Gordon

Gordon, who had an exceptional closing season at Washington, is at his greatest when he’s in off-man protection. He’s aggressive in run assist and has spectacular leaping skill. The actual fact he can play the nickel spot and has particular groups expertise makes him a heavy workload possibility for whichever crew drafts him.

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Penn State move rusher Arnold Ebiketie

The Temple switch showcased explosive pass-rushing traits throughout his one season at Penn State, the place he produced 62 tackles and 9.5 sacks. He’s a tad small (6-2, 250) for an edge rusher, however performs with energy and physicality.

Michigan State tailback Kenneth Walker III

Walker led all Energy-5 working backs in speeding in his one season at Michigan State after transferring from Wake Forest. He had 1,636 yards and 18 touchdowns in serving to lead the Spartans to an 11-2 document and win over Pitt within the Peach Bowl.

Iowa State tailback Breece Corridor

Corridor has an NFL-ready physique at 5-foot-11, 217 kilos, and he ran a 4.39-second 40-yard sprint in addition. Corridor’s mix efficiency complemented his on-field manufacturing with the Cyclones the place he ran for 1,472 yards and 20 touchdowns. He has dimension, pace and explosion.

Colorado State tight finish Trey McBride

McBride, who caught 164 passes for two,100 yards and scored 10 touchdowns, has elite ball expertise and the quickness wanted to get open in opposition to NFL linebackers. He goes arduous as a blocker, which provides him an opportunity to be a three-down tight finish. However he has common pace and isn’t elusive with the ball in his arms.

North Dakota receiver Christian Watson

Watson, who caught 105 passes for two,139 yards and 14 touchdowns in his 4 seasons, is without doubt one of the greatest athletes on this draft. At 6-foot-4, 205 kilos — and working a 4.3 time within the 40-yard sprint — he’s a bodily specimen that would blossom rapidly if paired with the correct quarterbacks.

Alabama linebacker Christian Harris

Harris is a real three-down linebacker with unfastened hips, pace and athleticism wanted to cowl in house. His quickness and pace permit him to beat blockers, however he additionally has the dimensions (6-2, 230) wanted work in visitors. Nonetheless, offenses appeared to focus on him in protection in school and that would grow to be a problem within the NFL.

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Penn State security Jaquan Brisker

Brisker is a quick and instinctive security who has the ability set to play within the field, the put up, and function a nickel cornerback. He can maintain his personal in opposition to the run and has ball expertise (5 interceptions in three seasons). He tends to stare down quarterbacks and lacks route recognition, so it could possibly be a season or two earlier than he’s able to be considered as a dependable NFL starter.

Michigan defensive finish David Ojabo

Ojabo may need been a first-round decide if he didn’t tear his ACL at his professional day in April. Earlier than the harm, his athleticism allowed him to shut on performs successfully. He logged 11 sacks within the 2021 season, however that was the one season he thrived in his collegiate profession.

Baylor security Jalen Pitre

Pitre is a rangy, quick, bodily security who has the ability set to play within the field, and will doubtlessly excel as a nickel cornerback. He performed the star place in his closing two seasons at Baylor, and pulled down 4 interceptions whereas recording 30 tackles for loss and 6 sacks in these two years. His lack of dimension (5-foot-11, 198 kilos) may restrict him as a blitzer, nevertheless it’s clear that this top-100 expertise will finally grow to be an NFL starter, and will doubtlessly be a Professional Bowl expertise. Count on him to be chosen by the third spherical.

LSU linebacker Damone Clark

Clark is a big (6-3, 245) well-proportioned linebacker whose size and pace assist him in protection. He has an aggressive temperament, and his effort isn’t missing. Whereas he was extremely productive (135 tackles, 5.5 sacks and one interception) in his closing season at LSU there’s nonetheless room for progress and enchancment.

Georgia linebacker Channing Tindall

Whereas Tindall was a job participant for the Bulldogs’ elite protection, he flashed playmaking skill and traits that point out he’s an athletic mover who may grow to be a sideline-to-sideline defender. The one knock on Tindall is that he appears hesitant when dropping into zones. However he generally is a core particular groups participant who brings worth to the third section of the sport.

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Cincinnati quarterback Desmond Ridder

Ridder was a winner at Cincinnati in his 4 years as a starter, persistently preserving the Bearcats atop the American Athletic Convention and main the crew to a School Soccer Playoff berth final season. His accuracy and ball placement wants work to be thought-about a viable NFL passer, however he additionally possesses great athleticism behind middle, working a 4.52-second 40-yard sprint.

Sam Houston cornerback Zyon McCollum

McCollum, a five-year starter for an FCS program, is a ballhawk (13 interceptions) who has a great mixture of dimension (6-2, 200) and pace (4.33 within the 40-yard sprint). He’s instinctive, possesses phenomenal ball expertise, and catches the ball at its highest level. He’s additionally bodily in opposition to the run. His greatest problem will probably be adjusting to wideouts who match his dimension, pace and athleticism.

North Carolina quarterback Sam Howell

Howell’s 3,056 yards passing and 24 touchdowns in 2021 can really be thought-about a down yr after he threw for 3,500 or extra yards and 30-plus touchdowns every of his first two seasons. That was a byproduct of shedding receiver Dyami Brown and the massive working sport he had with backs Javonte Williams and Michael Carter. However Howell has the expertise to grow to be an NFL starter, and may be the sleeper on this draft.

Baylor receiver Tyquan Thornton

Thornton, who was timed at 4.28 within the 40-yard sprint, is without doubt one of the quickest gamers on this draft class. However the 6-foot-2, 181-pounder is extra than simply pace. Thornton, who caught 143 passes for two,242 yards and scored 19 touchdowns in his 4 seasons at Baylor, has a formidable catch radius and sticky arms. He may grow to be an NFL star with correct teaching.