Tag Archive: Orlando


Hey guys. Here are my notes from the West practice today. Unfortunately I couldn’t stay for the entire thing, but I left while they were just breaking a huddle after a lot of 7 on 7 work. There was some team stuff to start off the practice, so I have notes on some defensive players, but I am lacking on defensive players and on offensive linemen. I will do better tomorrow! Anyways, enjoy mostly offensive notes.

West Practice Notes Day 1:

Quarterbacks:

Nathan Enderle, QB, Idaho:

Enderle had an up and down day. His footwork looked solid, he has a fluid throwing motion, he has the best arm of any of the three QB’s, especially as far as zip is concerned. He struggled with ball placement on a long ball and some other throws as well. Not necessarily putting the ball on the money. Other times he hit simpler, shorter routes in stride. Throws to the sideline and deep weren’t as well placed. He was double clutching some during 7 on 7 drills also. That’s not a very good sign as he may not be trusting what he sees when making his reads.

Scott Tolzien, QB, Wisconsin:

Tolzien had a solid day, but he didn’t do anything that I haven’t seen him do before. He has a bit of a hitch in his throwing motion which negatively affects his timing and it showed on throws to the sideline, especially since he doesn’t have the arm strength to compensate for his slightly slower release. This hurts him as a prospect obviously, but he has solid accuracy and a bit above average arm strength. He could stick as a back-up somewhere, but I don’t expect to see anything this week that will make me think he has a lot of potential as a starter.

Jerrod Johnson, QB, Texas A&M:

It was the same old Johnson today. His throwing motion has been cleaned up, but it still has a hitch in it when he brings his arm back. It isn’t obvious on easy throws to the flat, but on throws downfield and to the sideline it is pretty hard to miss. Additionally his passes don’t have much zip on them despite his size and ability to throw the ball far downfield. His ball placement was not good today and not all of his spirals were tight spirals. He also seemed to struggle with reading defenses a bit, he took too long to scan the field and come back to his check down in my opinion. I wasn’t impressed with him before and I’m not sure I will be any more impressed with him after this week.

Halfbacks:

Da’Rel Scott, RB, Maryland:

Scott had an ok day but didn’t look like anything special to me. He looked tentative when he was running and didn’t seem to find lanes to run as fast as other backs I had seen today. Not sure how good his vision is for that reason.

Vai Taua, RB, Nevada:

Taua had an ok day as a runner but he dropped a pass or two that I saw which you don’t want to see.

Alex Green, RB, Hawaii:

Green looked pretty good, had some burst. He dropped a pass but it was thrown with some mustard on it, still should have caught it since it hit him in the hands. I wasn’t too impressed with Scott or Taua, so he was the most impressive back today on the West squad to me.

Wide Receivers:

Ryan Whalen, WR, Stanford:

Whalen didn’t drop a ball all day that I saw. He caught a couple balls away from his body and also caught some up against his body, but he never dropped one. He also got vertical more than any receiver did today on either squad, catching three balls for nice chunks of yardage in the West practice. He looks like a solid possession receiver in the pros to me. He runs pretty well too.

Anthony Parker, WR, Calgary:

Parker was one guy I wanted to watch because I had never seen him play before, and I definitely came away impressed. He has pretty good size and has definitely been in the weight room because he was one of the bigger receivers in that aspect. He adjusted to the ball well, caught the ball well with his hands, and also had some nice route running and burned #7 on a double move I believe. I don’t think he got the ball, but later in the practice he got held by a corner to make sure he didn’t create too much separation. He had a really good practice.

Armon Binns, WR, Cincinnati:

I have been skeptical of Binns for a while but he had a good practice. He’s tall and kind of skinny like Toliver, but he also showed good hands today. He made a couple of nice catches away from his body, one with his long arms fully extended to make the catch on a throw towards the sideline. He has long arms and good hands, plus he is tall. He strikes me as a potentially good receiver, but I haven’t paid enough attention to his route running yet. He definitely had a good practice catching the ball though.

Aldrick Robinson, WR, SMU:

I was impressed with Robinson today. I hadn’t seen him play much so I was definitely looking out for him and he impressed me. He caught the ball well with his hands multiple times, I don’t think I saw him drop one today. He has good speed and even though he is undersized I was very impressed with him. I like his potential as a slot receiver and because of his size he is flying a bit under the radar.

Tight Ends:

Jordan Cameron, TE, USC:

Cameron had a solid practice. I didn’t see him much as a blocker, but he had a nice catch from a receiving standpoint. I haven’t seen him at all so I need to pay attention to him this week.

Virgil Green, TE, Nevada:

I haven’t seen Green play much and I didn’t see him targeted much today, but he laid out for a ball that was overthrown to the sideline. The cool thing about that is they weren’t wearing pads (or helmets for that matter, which was frankly kind of concerning since they were going full speed without hitting at times) and they were playing on carpet in the hotel ballroom… so he was diving knowing he was almost certainly going to get carpet burn. I wrote in my notes “Virgil Green just laid out for a ball without a helmet on and on carpet… Bad ass.”

Defensive Linemen:

Karl Klug, DT, Iowa:

Klug looked great in practice today. He was very disruptive and showed good hand usage and a very nice swim move which he used three or four times to get into the backfield quickly. He even beat Barksdale off the edge, which says something about Barksdale to be honest.

Linebackers:

Dontay Moch, OLB, Nevada:

Moch weighed in at only 229 which was kind of a disappointment, but I am not sold on him in coverage yet. He has great speed but I am not sure how well he changes direction yet, though he didn’t look as uncomfortable as Chris Carter in coverage today. His best attribute is definitely his ability as a pass rusher, and a couple times he was effectively blocked by TE’s which isn’t surprising at his weight.

Chris Carter, OLB, Fresno State:

Carter has some ability as a pass rusher but he looked very uncomfortable in coverage today. He didn’t get very deep in his drops and looked uncomfortable in space. I think he is going to have to be a rotational DE in a 4-3 because I’m not sure he’s good enough in coverage to play in a 3-4.

Defensive Backs:

Shiloh Keo, SS, Idaho:

I dont have many notes on Keo, but he did make a nice interception on a Jerrod Johnson pass that was not very well thrown (it was in the air a while) but he made a nice play on the ball and came away with the pick.

Again, I apologize for the lack of offensive and defensive line notes. I’ll definitely have more for you guys on the defensive side of the ball tomorrow. Thanks for reading! Hope you enjoyed it and keep coming back for more updates throughout the week!

–Tom

Scouting Report:

Justin Houston has a lot of potential as a pass rusher, but I think he will need a defensive line coach to light a fire under him to get him to reach his potential.

Positives: Perfect size for a RE in a 4-3 at 6’2” or 6’3” and about 255-260 pounds. He is very athletic and has great explosiveness off the ball, especially when he can get a feel for the snap count. When he gets a great jump off the ball he can beat just about anyone off the edge, and he shows the ability to dip his shoulder to get the edge. He seems to have more than adequate hip flexibility to do this as well. He also flashes the ability to slap away the hands of the tackle as he makes a bee-line around him to the quarterback, which makes him very dangerous. Not only does he threaten off the edge he has also developed the awareness to set the tackle up for the speed rush and then burst back inside and get to the quarterback with an inside move. He has good closing speed to get to the QB and is a reliable tackler both when rushing the QB and when pursuing other ball carriers. He wraps up well, and flashes some good pop as a hitter which helps him forces fumbles occasionally. I have found that he is by far most effective when he has his hand in the dirt as a pass rusher like a 4-3 DE would as he just appears much more explosive off the ball and has a lot more success as a pass rusher. He also does a better job of keeping his pads low to play with good leverage when he comes out of that stance. He flashes the necessary motor to pursue, he did a solid job of this in the Auburn game. Probably because he realized that sacks weren’t going to come easy on Cam Newton. He has been extremely productive in the SEC which you have to take into consideration. He has flashed the ability to use a swim move once or twice a game also.

Negatives: The biggest complaint I have with Houston is his motor. It runs very hot and cold, and more cold than anything else. There are times when he is just jogging in pursuit of ball-carriers and more than once it has cost him a chance at a tackle that would have saved a lot of yardage for his defense or a chance at a sack for him personally. I am not sure why his motor is so inconsistent but it leaves a lot to be desired. I think it might be because he is so athletic that he realizes that if he goes hard on a number of plays that he will be able to make plays when he goes all out. Then he throttles down for other plays, especially against the run. He makes plays in the running game, but not as consistently as he does as a pass rusher. I think he needs to continue to improve his hand usage to help him shed blocks in the running game and as a pass rusher, though he has shown improvement in this area. But the more violent he can get his hands the better off he will be. I am 100% convinced that he would be a vastly better 4-3 RE than he would be a 3-4 OLB. He rarely drops into coverage for Georgia and when he does he does not look comfortable and against Arkansas he got burned on a wheel route and didn’t even realize that his guy was gone until the ball was thrown and he was 15+ yards away for a free touchdown. He is horribly mis-cast in a 3-4. His production this year is not because of his pass rushing when standing up in a 3-4 it is because Georgia faces spread offenses consistently enough that they have to go to nickel packages a lot which means four down lineman for their defense. That is when Houston makes his impact, not when he is standing up or dropping into coverage. However, Houston has almost no secondary pass rush moves. He can speed rush, beat his man to the inside after he sets his man up with the speed rush and then bull rush. Very rarely he will swim move but those moves are few and far between. The fact that he is so effective with such a limited repertoire of pass rush moves makes me wonder just how lethal he could be if someone got in his face and challenged him to go hard on every play and develop secondary pass rush moves. But as of right now his pass rushing is limited, as stupid as that sounds for a player who routinely applied pressure as a pass rusher in the SEC.

Overall: I really like Houston as a prospect and his potential is very high as a RE in a 4-3 in the NFL. His explosiveness and edge speed is pretty rare and he has been a very productive pass rusher the past two years in the SEC. I don’t usually like guys with inconsistent motors like Houston but his potential is high enough that he might be worth the risk for a team that really needs a potentially dominant RE. I think his saving grace might be that he will be worked in on a rotational basis in the NFL for his first couple seasons which will allow him the opportunity to go 100% when he comes in to look to make an impact and make a name for himself. I don’t know him personally obviously and I can’t say this for sure without an interview, but I really think that an in-your-face defensive line coach could motivate him to be a dominant player in the NFL. If he is open to coaching, which it seems like he is considering his development these past two years, then he could very well develop some secondary pass rush moves. I would love to see him improve his swim and club moves, and if he ever works in a spin move that he can use once or twice a game he could be absolutely lethal as a pass rusher. Especially if his hand usage improves as well. Really it comes down to how badly he wants to improve and if he is open to coaching. I believe that a good defensive line coach could motivate him to be a great pass rusher in the NFL though, because he has all the tools and really all he needs is coaching, technique development and someone to light a fire under him and push him to reach his potential. I really hope someone finds a way to motivate him because he could be a very fun pass rusher to watch in the NFL if someone does.

Projection: Top 25-40 picks- I don’t think he will break into the top 20 unless he really impresses in workouts and measurements at the combine and at his pro-day. His motor will probably scare some teams away, as it should. But I think some team in the late first round will take a risk on him, particularly a team with a quality coaching staff that can coach him up, motivate him and develop him.

SKILLS:
1-poor, 2-weak, 3-above average, 4-very good, 5-elite

STRENGTH: 3.0
QUICKNESS: 4.0
PASS RUSH: 4.0
POINT OF ATTACK: 2.5
RECOGNITION: 3.0
MOTOR: 2.0

Hopefully you enjoyed my scouting report! I’m still working through Alabama tape, but I will have stuff up on that eventually as well as some exclusive content from the East/West Shrine Game since I will be there all week! So look out for all of that. Thanks for reading!

–Tom