Tag Archive: Brandon Saine


I thought I would put together a list of overrated and underrated players and give my thoughts on them. Hopefully you enjoy the list and feel free to comment if you agree or disagree! Enjoy!

Overrated:

Locker has had a slow start to the season, and I don't think he is going to be able to live up to the pre-season hype and the comparisons to John Elway and Steve Young.

-Jake Locker, QB, Washington- Like I said at the beginning of the season, I don’t think Locker will be able to live up to the crazy hype that has involved him being compared to John Elway and Steve Young. He has had a relatively slow start to the year and he had an absolutely horrible game against a very good Nebraska defense. Needless to say, if Mallett has a good game against Alabama he will probably move up ahead of Locker on most QB rankings. I like Locker, but he has things to improve on like every other QB and it will be hard for him to take the same leaps and bounds that he did during the season last year. I think he will be the second or third QB drafted depending on whether Luck comes out or not and on how Ponder does this season.

-Dion Lewis, RB, Pittsburgh- He has had a very slow start to the season, and though he has been running against teams playing 8 and 9 men at the box at times he still hasn’t looked like the same runner as last year to me. He hasn’t shown me much patience as a runner, and doesn’t seem to have much of a burst to hit the hole right now. His back-up, Graham, looked much more effective against Miami and really showed the burst to hit the hole and gain good yardage. I’m not saying Lewis isn’t a good running back, far from it, but he had one of the great seasons ever as a freshman last year and expectations were unbelievably high this year, and I think he has really underwhelmed so far.

Julio Jones has a lot of potential, but he hasn't shown the consistency that is more characteristic of high first round picks, especially those with his skill set.

-Julio Jones, WR, Alabama- Julio Jones is an incredible athlete and has a ton of potential, but I think he is only scratching the surface of his potential at this point. I think he is one of those players who could be much better in the NFL than he was in college, but that is just my opinion. He hasn’t shown a lot of consistency in his time at Alabama, and though he can make some great catches and plays I would like to see him make plays more regularly. Part of this has to do with Alabama’s rather average QB play during his time here, but he should still be making plays despite that. Calvin Johnson always managed to. It will be interesting to see if he makes me a believer this year and shows a lot more consistency, but as of right now I think he is overrated by a lot of people because he was so highly recruited out of high school. He absolutely has NFL potential though. I just worry that he may be one of those boom/bust types because he will either get it in the NFL and be a very good receiver or he will remain a great physical specimen that doesn’t play up to his potential.

-Greg Romeus, DE, Pittsburgh- I know Romeus is hurt right now, so his stock will probably come down a bit, but I don’t get all the love for this guy. Yes he puts up some nice sack numbers and he has good potential as a pass rusher, but I literally watched him get effectively blocked in 1 on 1 match-ups with TE’s against BUFFALO last year. I’m sure he has developed since then, but I haven’t had a chance to see him play this year so I have to assume that he hasn’t developed considerably better hand usage and block shedding ability. So under that assumption I have to say he is very overrated. If he can’t play the run and get off blocks from college TE’s then how is he going to be a NFL starter at RE and stand up to starting caliber LT’s in the NFL that are at least solid at run blocking? There isn’t any way. Until I see him play the run better, shed blocks better and also flash some serious pass rush ability (essentially more than just a good speed rush/edge rush) then he will be very overrated in my opinion.

Allen Bailey has a lot of potential, but I don't think he is an impact player and I personally think he is one of the more overrated prospects in the country.

-Allen Bailey, DE/DT, Miami- I’m not sure there is a player in the country more overrated than Allen Bailey in my opinion. He looks awful every time I watch him play. He is a physical freak, he has great weight room numbers, and he looks like a good football player when you see him standing somewhere, but he doesn’t play well. Yes, he can get the occasional sack on a pass rush and yes he will make the occasional tackle versus the run, but I have watched him get blocked 1 on 1 by Lance Kendricks, Garrett Graham and other offensive lineman (Kendricks and Graham are both TE’s by the way) and I have seen them take him out of the play completely versus the run. Now, Bailey’s body type and skill set makes me think his best fit will be at 3-4 DE on the next level. I don’t think he has the edge speed or the quick-twitch pass rush ability to play DE in a 4-3, and I think that 4-3 DT would be his second best position behind 3-4 DE. However, he can’t shed a block to save his life. He has very bad hand usage, he is routinely the last player off the line and doesn’t have good burst off of the line of scrimmage, he doesn’t have a very good motor from what I have seen, and he doesn’t make impact plays versus the run. Not to mention every time he gets double-teamed he gets completely washed out of the play despite his great strength (which is a serious issue for a 3-4 DE prospect and a 4-3 DT prospect even if the guy is going to play under tackle in that scheme). I watched Pittsburgh’s offensive line double him and by the end of the play he was so far downfield that he when the offensive lineman still blocking him shoved him as he was giving up on the play he was no longer in the camera shot when the tackle was made. Bailey is so overrated it is ridiculous, and I wouldn’t pick him before the 4th or 5th round if I was a GM.

-Marvin Austin, DT, UNC- He might not be overrated for long, but when people talk about him as a 1st round pick I think they are talking about his potential more than his actual performance. He has the potential to be an absolute dominant DT, but I have been waiting for well over three years to see that player and I haven’t seen it yet, and I may never see it at North Carolina because he might not even play this year. He has so much ability and so much potential, but he just hasn’t lived up to it as a Tar Heel. To me he is a boom/bust guy, and I would definitely think he is more likely to be a bust than a boom player if he doesn’t get to play all year. But that is just me. Guys like Austin really scare me as NFL prospects because they have a lot of ability, so you pick them earlier than you probably should, and more times than not (in my opinion) they end up being a waste of a high NFL Draft selection.

Harris has potential, but I'm not sure he will ever live up to it, especially not in the NFL.

-Jacory Harris, QB, Miami- Harris is a guy that I have higher expectations for, but I don’t think he will ever live up to them. To do that he would have to put more zip on his passes and cut out his bad habit of putting so much touch on his throws, but he has continued to do it this year and I think the glitz surrounding his game and being the Miami QB has started to fade, and people are seeing him for who he really is. He’s a good college QB, but he’s not going to be a good NFL QB in my opinion. He is rail thin, he doesn’t seem very tough to me, he doesn’t look like a good leader, he doesn’t make good decisions under pressure, he forces throws into coverage and continues to make bad decisions, plus his passes have too much touch on them regardless of where he is throwing them on the field. So to me, Harris is overrated and has been for a while, but maybe he won’t be for long if he keeps throwing interceptions.

Underrated:

Greg Jones is one of my favorite linebacker prospects in the country, if not my favorite.

-Greg Jones, ILB, Michigan State- Jones is a fantastic linebacker and whether he plays inside or outside on the next level I would be absolutely shocked if he doesn’t become a very good player. He is a great tackler, he has great instincts and even though he isn’t the biggest guy he supports the run well and is good in coverage. He is as good a linebacker as there is in the entire country in my opinion, yet he gets almost no press. He should get a lot more of the spotlight as the season comes to a close and the post-season activities start. I have a feeling he will show up big in the senior bowl barring an unfortunate injury.

-Brandon Saine, RB, Ohio State- I have really liked Saine since last year when he was competing for PT with Herron in Ohio State’s backfield, but I think he has an opportunity to break out this year. He had a very pedestrian stat-line against Miami, but I haven’t watched that game yet to see how he managed only 7 yards on 12 carries. Regardless, I like him as a running back and I am excited to see how he does the rest of the season. Hopefully he shows up big for the Buckeyes since he is one of my sleepers for this senior class.

-Ronald Johnson, WR, Southern Cal- Johnson isn’t the biggest receiver, but I like him as a potential sleeper this year. He might be too well known for that, but considering his past production I don’t think it is too far out of the question. Regardless, he has already surpassed his total for touchdowns from last season (he had 3 last year and already has 4 this year) and he has looked good in the time that I have seen him this year. He is definitely underrated in my opinion, and I am really excited to see how he does against better Pac-10 competition.

Derrick Locke is a great sleeper prospect, and I am really excited to see how he fares in the SEC this year.

-Derrick Locke, RB, Kentucky- Locke is one of my favorite sleepers and he seems to be having a good season this year. He already has 372 yards (including a 6.1 ypc average) and 5 td’s, plus 8 catches for    60 yards. He already has 69 touches on offense in three games for over 430 yards and 5 scores, so he is definitely a key cog in Kentucky’s offense. He is similar to Dexter McCluster in that way to me, because McCluster was the engine that made Mississippi’s offense go last year, and Locke is that same guy for Kentucky. I really like Locke, and I think he has the ability to be drafted in the 3rd or 4th round in the draft this year.

-Randall Cobb, WR, Kentucky- Cobb has superstar written all over him in my opinion. He might not be the biggest, the fastest or the strongest, but the guy is a straight-up playmaker. He has 160 yards receiving (2 TD’s), 108 yards rushing (1 TD), 65 yards on punt returns (on 10 returns, 50 of which came on one touchdown return), plus 5 KR’s for 103 yards… he even has 2 completions as a passer (2/2 actually) for 34 yards and a score. He has a touchdown as a receiver, a passer, a rusher and as a return man… He is so versatile. I can’t wait to see him play against some SEC competition, because if he can make a couple big plays against those defenses then he can make a play against anybody.

I think that about does it for my list of overrated/underrated players. I think this is definitely a solid list, let me know if what you would have done differently or what you agree or disagree with!

Thanks for reading!

–Tom

Opening Weekend Thoughts:

Well opening weekend is nearly over after the Sunday games have been played. I am very excited to see Boise State and Virginia Tech square off tomorrow, but I have some thoughts about the games that were played this weekend. I haven’t watched all of them obviously, but I got to catch a few of them. Here are my thoughts about how some specific players did:

-Alshon Jeffrey, WR, South Carolina- I was impressed with how Jeffrey played last Thursday against Southern Mississippi. He is definitely South Carolina’s go-to guy and while he definitely has some things that he needs to work on he has great size, great natural ability to play receiver and he shows up when they need a first down or a big play, which is something that I really like to see in any prospect that I watch. I am excited to see how he develops in his second season on the college level. At this point AJ Green is the only receiver I would grade higher than Jeffrey in the entire SEC, which speaks volumes about him considering he is just embarking on his sophomore campaign.

-Terrelle Pryor, QB, Ohio State- Pryor seems to have continued his run of quality play that, in my opinion, started in the Rose Bowl last season. Obviously he didn’t play a quality opponent, but he did what he was supposed to do and that was play well and beat Marshall badly, which he did. I haven’t watched the game yet, but I saw part of it and he looked effective to me. But all that means is that he is starting to become a good college quarterback, there is not nearly enough evidence in his play to suggest that he is becoming a quality NFL quarterback prospect yet. But still, his performance on Saturday was encouraging.

-Brandon Saine, RB, Ohio State- Saine was one of my sleepers coming into the season, and last season when he was splitting carries with Daniel Herron I kept thinking to myself that Saine looked like the better runner to me. Well on Saturday he ran for over 100 yards on just nine carries and had two touchdowns. I have not yet posted my list of sleepers because I haven’t finished my defensive watch list, but Saine was definitely one of the guys I thought could make himself a lot of money this year, and it looks like he may just make me look smart this year. I am hoping and expecting a big year for him.

-Matt Barkley, QB, Southern Cal- I have been a big fan of Barkley since he first enrolled at USC and was fighting for the starting job, so I always find myself rooting for him to play well when Southern Cal takes the field. Barkley certainly didn’t disappoint me against Hawaii. He went 18/23, had 257 yards and five touchdowns in the game, and though I haven’t rewatched the game yet he impressed me. His receivers did get a lot of yards after catch which benefited his stats, but regardless I thought he played well. I am excited to see how he progresses this year, as I have been high on him for well over a year now.

-Marc Tyler, RB, Southern Cal- Tyler surprised me by winning the starting spot, but he looked very good against Hawaii. He looked fast, he showed good vision, he made nice cuts, he got North and South well, and most importantly he was productive. I think that with Barkley leading the offense and Tyler carrying the ball USC is going to be very difficult to slow down. I was very impressed with what I saw from him, so look for his draft stock to improve this year if he can stay healthy (which has been his issue in the past).

-Ronald Johnson, WR, Southern Cal- You’d probably think that I am a closet USC fan if you are just reading my blog for the first time, but I promise I’m not. USC is a hotbed for NFL talent though, so it is hard to ignore them when you are looking for players to scout, especially when you want to get as much mileage out of the time you spend watching games as possible. Johnson looked explosive against Hawaii and he was also very productive with three touchdowns. As I said earlier I haven’t re-watched this game yet, but I was pleased with what I saw from Johnson upon my initial view, and it’s hard to spin a three touchdown game for any receiver in a negative light, regardless of the competition.

-Nick Foles, QB, Arizona- I am not a big Foles supporter, but he played well against Toledo. He went 32/37 for 360 yards, two touchdowns and one interception. My issue with Foles is that he stares down his first read very frequently, which was my major beef with Sam Bradford, but he produced in this game. It will be interesting to take a look at this game to see how much he was staring down his receivers, but in the little that I saw of it it looked like he was still doing that. But he still played well and was efficient, so he deserves praise for that at least. He just won’t be moving up my QB rankings list before he shows me that he can read a defense and go through his progressions consistently.

-Juron Criner, WR, Arizona- I honestly knew nothing about Criner before this game, but some of the catches I saw him make were just incredible. He had 11 receptions, 187 yards and a touchdown, but he made a couple of highlight reel catches. He has very nice size at 6’4″, 210 pounds and has a reported 40 yard time of 4.62, which is not very good, but he dominated this game. He really caught my eye, so if or when I re-watch this game I will be paying specific attention to him to see how he looks.

-Adam Robinson, RB, Iowa- Robinson ran for 109 yards and three touchdowns on 24 carries in Iowa’s opener, pacing the Hawkeyes on their opening day victory. I haven’t re-watched the game yet, but I am looking forward to seeing how he develops this season. This was a very good start to the year for him.

-Derrick Locke, RB, Kentucky- Locke’s role on Kentucky reminds me a lot of Dexter McCluster’s on Ole Miss last year. It isn’t to the same extent, but their roles are similar in that as Locke goes Kentucky goes, much like how McCluster fueled Ole Miss last year. Locke is a guy I have really liked for a couple of months now, and he is definitely one of my RB sleepers for this year’s RB class. He and Brandon Saine are two of my favorite RB prospects in this senior class, but they haven’t gotten a lot of pub. Locke is very versatile and he honestly reminds me a lot of Warrick Dunn in that he can run up the middle, has the speed to get the edge, and is a very reliable receiver out of the backfield. This week he had 125 total yards (104 rushing) and two touchdowns. Watch out for him.

-Randall Cobb, WR, Kentucky- Cobb is a guy that I think has star potential, he is just so talented and is so versatile. He had 19 yards passing, 80 yards rushing on only four attempts, 19 more yards receiving on only two receptions and 59 yards on two kickoff returns. It’s not his most impressive game, but it shows the versatility he presents. Definitely watch out for him, he’s only a junior.

-Denard Robinson, QB, Michigan- What can you say about this guy other than “wow” to be honest. He had 197 yards rushing in his debut as a starter along with one touchdown rushing, plus he went 19/22 for 186 yards passing with one touchdown and he didn’t turn the ball over. That is about as efficient as it gets, especially when you are averaging 9.8 yards per attempt and 6.8 yards per rush. It will be really interesting to see if he can put up numbers even remotely similar to that against conference opponents this year. But wow, what a debut.

-Greg Jones, MLB, Michigan State- I watched the majority of this game while I was also watching Florida play, but I paid attention to Jones when he was on the field and he was impressive. I don’t know what his stat line looked like, but all I can say is this guy is the real deal. He has great instincts, he is always around the ball and he has just been impressive every time I’ve seen him play. Watching him play almost makes me regret that the Falcons ended up with Sean Weatherspoon, that is how high I am on this guy.

-Andre Ellington, RB, Clemson- Ellington had a good game against North Texas as he went off for 122 yards on just 12 carries with two touchdowns. It will be really interesting to see if he steps up to the plate and replaces Spiller, though he will be hard pressed to replace Spiller in all aspects of the game he should be able to step up and help replace his speed and playmaking ability on offense.

-Jamie Harper, RB, Clemson- Harper is another guy I want to watch out for because he had 102 yards and a score this weekend also. The combination of Ellington and Harper could be lethal this year, especially if Parker starts to come on at quarterback. I haven’t re-watched this game yet, but I am excited to see how both of these players look this year. Hopefully Harper runs as hard as he should at his size, because I was disappointed with how hard James Davis ran when he was the alleged “Thunder” to Spiller’s lightning a couple of years ago.

-Janoris Jenkins, CB, Florida- Jenkins is a guy that I have been impressed with since last year when I noticed him when I was scouting Joe Haden. Haden was a very good corner, but Jenkins might be just as, if not more, athletically gifted. I love how Jenkins supports the run, he is a good tackler, he is very physical, and he is good in coverage. He looked good to me yesterday, though I didn’t watch him on every snap and it was hard to see him at times due to the camera angles on TV. But he had a great break on the ball which ended in a pick six that kept Florida out of trouble while their offense was sputtering. As far as I’m concerned he was far and away their best player on Saturday.

I know there are other players that played well, but it is just too much to go through every game and find players who performed well. These were guys that I was aware of playing well before I started looking through box scores and reading through recaps. Hopefully that is a good enough list for all of you.

Once there are some more competitive games I will start putting up some preliminary scouting reports for that game that will hopefully involve previous viewings of the player if I have been able to see them before. Obviously they won’t be final reports, but they will be something that I take into serious account when I write a final report later in the season.

Thanks for reading! Hopefully it wasn’t too wordy, I try to keep these short but it never works.

–Tom