Mel Kiper Jr. has released his big board for the 2012 NFL Draft, which is of course headlined by Andrew Luck at the top.
The rest of the top 10 are:
Quinton Coples, DE, North Carolina
Matt Kalil, OT, USC
Alshon Jeffrey, WR, South Carolina
Matt Barkley, QB, USC
Jonathan Martin, OT, Stanford
Justin Blackmon, WR, Oklahoma State
Jerel Worth, DT, Michigan State
Dre Kirkpatrick, CB, Alabama
Landry Jones, QB, Oklahoma
Those are the usual suspects. One player I think I need to see a big season from in order to trust more as a top ten prospect is Jerel Worthy. Last year he only had 4 sacks and 6 tackles for loss. Those are hardly top ten numbers you want to see from a defensive linemen, especially one who is listed just above three hundred pounds. I know he has the talent, but I really would like to see a jump in the numbers before I would feel comfortable with him at that spot, even though numbers aren’t anything, they still mean something.
Another interesting thing to note is that the linebacker class of this upcoming year (especially players who could play in the 43) at this point is miles ahead of last year’s linebacker class. There are currently 4 players listed in Kipers 25 as linebackers.
Vontaze Burfict, LB, ASU 12th on Kiper’s Big Board.
Luke Kuechley, LB, Boston College 16th on Kiper’s Big Board
Manti Te’o LB, Norte Dame 20th on Kiper Big Board
Cortney Upshaw, LB, Alabama.
It’ll be interesting to see how those players develop. Jared Crick is 22nd overall for you Nebraksa Corhuskers fans out there.
Another “big board” that was released recently comes from Rob Staton of www.seahawksdraftblog.com, one of my favorite draft-related reads. He has some players, not much talked about very high (and one of my favorite reads because he just says his opinion and doesn’t worry about whether or not its a consensus thought. I should mention this is more of a list that is balancing the 50 best players along with highlighting a lot of players to watch
His very highly rated players
Jayron Hosley, CB, Va Tech (#5)
Bruce Irvin, DE, West Virginia (#8)
Janoris Jenkins, CB, North Alabama (formerly Florida Gators), #11 (Not on Kiper’s initial big board-could be character related though)
Juron Criner, WR, Arizona (#14)
Logan Harrell, DT, Fresno State (#15)
Brandon Jenkins, DE/OLB, Florida State (#17)….just mentioning because he’s a player I’m very impressed with.
Logan Thomas, QB, Virginia Tech (#22)
Check out the reasoning for these and more over at www.seahawksdraftblog.com or click this here!
How much stock should you put in Kiper’s top 10 big board?
I’m not sure. There really aren’t too many surprising or shocking rankings. He did have Ayers as the 20th overall prospect heading into last year, not sure how many people had him that high. Cam Newton, Nick Fairley weren’t on his radar (or anyone else’s for that matter). Neither were top 11 picks J.J. Watt or Aldon Smith.
But He was pretty accurate with his top 10, as far as getting players that went in the first round goes.
Jake Locker, Andrew Luck, Robert Quinn, A.j. Green, Adrian Clayborn, Ryan Mallett, Marcell Dareus, Anthony Castanzo, Cameron Heyward, Patrick Peterson, so there’s a good chance that most of Kiper’s big board will be drafted in the first round.
Joe Owens, one of our contributors, and now the editor at www.torotimes.com (see coming here and writing can lead to paid opportunities [email protected] if you’re interested for details) made put out his initial big board here. Sayre and I will be coming out with our top 100 big board soon.
Follow us on twitter @NFLmocks and like us on facebook.