Top Prospects Key Weekend Matchups: Week 13


Each week NFL Mocks will release an article discussing the top prospect match-ups of the weekend.   We hope to show you what match-ups you should keep an eye on and what would help or hurt that prospects stock.  We encourage you to take a look at these match-ups and watch closely on Saturday to see who comes out on top.  We will discuss the results of those match-ups on Sunday.

Game: #2 Auburn @ #11 Alabama

Where to Watch: Friday Nov. 26th 2:30PM EST CBS

Prospects: QB Cam Newton vs S Mark Barron, LB Dont’a Hightower, and DE Marcell Dareus

Thoughts: Cam Newton has run around and through every defense he has faced this season. The Tigers will be going up against their 4th ranked team of the year and by far their toughest test. Alabama also has the offensive weapons to keep the pressure not only on the Auburn defense, but also Newton, who may have to find more magic to keep up on the scoreboard. Dareus and Hightower have to contain Newton when he runs and Barron and the Tide secondary need to disrupt the passing game.

How they Raise their Stock: Newton could raise his by staying in the pocket longer and making better passes down the field. We know he can run, but a big game passing with a chance at the BCS Title game on the line would send his stock even higher. Alabama’s defense already has the reputation as one of the best groups in the country and shutting down someone as hot as Cam Newton would give them all an aura of invincibility.

Game: #21 Arizona @ #1 Oregon

Where to Watch: Friday Nov. 26th 7PM EST ESPN ESPN3

Prospects: QB Nick Foles vs DL’s Kenny Rowe and Brandon Blair

Thoughts: There are two more games for each of the top ranked teams to slip and this looks to be Oregon’s tough match-up. This could be a bit of a trap game coming off an emotional close win at Cal and just before the big emotional rivalry game against Oregon State. Foles has missed some time due to injury and is getting back into his groove. Rowe (11 TFL, 6 sacks) and Blair (13 TFL, 3 sacks) are two of the more under rated defenders in the country. Both have been disruptive forces on a squad that has held opponents to an average of 17 points a game so far this season. Rowe will probably have to move to linebacker at the next level, while Blair may could be a DE in either a 4-3 or a 3-4.

How they Raise their Stock: All Foles has to do is beat the #1 team in the nation on the road in one of the loudest stadiums in the country. No problem. Rowe and Blair could stand to have big games to get hype going their way. A few sacks each and shutting down the potent potential of the Wildcat offense would help in that regard.

Game:#5 LSU @ #12 Arkansas

Where to Watch: Saturday Nov. 27th 3:30PM EST CBS

Prospects:  CB Patrick Peterson, DT Drake Nevis vs  OT DeMarcus Love

Thoughts:  LSU seem to keep winning by the seat of their collective pants, but if they had trouble keeping Ole Miss out of the end zone at home… then Arkansas will surely pose some problems for them. Mallett is the more decorated of the Razorback offensive stars, but  Love have been integral to his success.

How they Raise their Stock:  Both teams are fighting for a BCS at large bid, so this should be an emotionally charged game that stays close through out. The LSU defense needs to be consistent and not allow any holes for Mallett  to take advantage of. Love needs to keeps Mallett’s jersey clean and finish blocks in the run game.