NFL Draft: Who’s draft stock is rising?

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Since the NFL season came to a close, the football world has turned their focus towards the NFL draft. The draft process is a long thought-out period where teams do endless research on potential draft candidates. During the process some players will gain steam and get their draft value elevated, whereas some prospects will see a dip in their draft stock.

Devin White

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Devin White has been regarded as the No.1 linebacker in this years draft class since the beginning of the draft process. Although, now he has found his way into consideration of being a top five pick. Some draft experts have him going as early as being selected by the Raiders or Buccaneers. His potential is enormous and that’s why he’s a lock to be selected anywhere from pick 4-10.

White has generational speed for a linebacker that you just don’t see every year. He plays with immense physicality and possesses a high motor running sideline-to-sideline. He can change direction in a smooth manner, giving him the versatility to drop in coverage, play zone or blitz the quarterback. White can cover running backs and tight ends, which will provide him well as an every down linebacker in the NFL.

During his time at LSU, White recorded back-to-back seasons with 100 or more tackles. In his final year, he totaled 123 tackles, 3 sacks, six passes defended and three forced fumbles. In 2018 he was awarded the Dick Butkus award and a censuses All-American.

Drew Lock

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Drew Lock will likely slot right in after Kyler Murray and Dewayne Haskins are off the board. Lock started out as a fringe first round pick prior to the combine and his pro day, whereas now he looks to be selected around pick 10-20. Even as a four-year starter at Missouri, Lock could use a year to sit behind a veteran and mature as a NFL quarterback. Similar to what Patrick Mahomes did in Kansas City, learning from Alex Smith. Lock’s best attribute is without a doubt, his massive arm strength that allows him to sling the rock. Teams looking to stretch the field will definitely have him on their radar as a potential candidate.

Lock will provide a team with a quality passing attack. He isn’t afraid to make any throw, but can get in trouble with some of his decision-making. He shows quality anticipation in the pocket to go along with his mobility to extend plays. He doesn’t have blazing speed for a quarterback, but has enough quickness to keep the defenders honest. Something he needs to work on is completing passes at a higher rate. He was just a 56.9 percent thrower of the football, which needs to get much higher in order to be successful at the next level.

Lock had an efficient college career, totaling 883 completions, 12,193-yards and 99 touchdowns over four-years. In his final year, he had more completions than any other quarterback in the SEC (275 completions). He has a big arm and lets it loose to throw his receivers open downfield.

Byron Murphy

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Byron Murphy could find his name called before any other cornerback in this years draft. The Pac-12 defensive standout flashes extraordinary ball skills and plays with an aggressive flare. Murphy’s stock has risen after impressing many scouts during the evaluating process. He will likely be selected around picks 15-25 and be an immediate impact-starter.

Murphy may be slightly undersized at 5’11” 182 pounds, but he plays much bigger. He’s not afraid to lay the wood on opposing receivers, being labeled as a hard-hitting corner. He has fluent footwork to hang in there against any receiver. He posted a 4.55 40-yard dash and a 36.5 vertical at the combine.

Only a one-year starter in college, but he took full advantage of his opportunity. He flashed his ability at Washington, recording 58 tackles, four interceptions, 13 passes defended and one forced fumble. Even as playing on the outside as a cornerback, he showed the ability to effect the run defensively. Murphy should translate well into the NFL and help uplift a defensive unit.


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