Titus Young

10 Bold Predictions for the NFL Draft

10. Al Davis will shake things up
Normally this wouldn’t be a bold prediction, but without a 1st-round pick Davis will have to get creative.  Perhaps he’ll trade into the 1st round in an effort to land Jason Campbell’s eventual replacement. Ryan Mallet certainly fits the mold of an Al Davis quarterback…

9. Two or fewer trades occur in 1st round
After this weekend, no one knows when the next time will be that teams will have opportunity to fill holes. This could be their only chance to address some needs before the free agency period – which may not be as active as we’re used to. Draft picks are more valuable than ever this year and most teams will be reluctant to part with them.

8. Patrick Peterson comes off the board within the first six picks
Most mock drafts have Peterson falling to the 49ers, but he won’t last that long (sorry Niners fans). Denver supposedly likes him. Buffalo is unpredictable, so who knows what they’ll do. Arizona could settle for him. Dallas could trade up. And if all else fails, the Browns will snatch him up at No. 6.

7.  Mark Herzlich has a looooong wait in Radio City Music Hall
Herzlich is one of the 25 players attending the draft, and while the cancer survivor will get a great ovation when he is finally selected, he’s going to be waiting awhile. He clearly lost a step after returning to the field this past year, and he is unlikely to come off the board with in the first three rounds. 

6. Three receivers go in the 1st round
A.J. Green and Julio Jones will go in the top 10, but someone else will join them later in the 1st round.  The Rams could trade back and select some such as Titus Young or Jon Baldwin. The Falcons and Jets are two others possibly interested in a receiver in the late 1st.

5. Mark Ingram falls to the late 1st… and possibly further
Running backs have such a short lifespan in the NFL and are so readily available in the middle rounds of the draft that teams are becoming increasingly less interested in spending high picks on them. Ingram is the consensus top available player at the position, but there are very few teams desperate to fill a hole at that position. If the Dolphins don’t take him at No. 15, he’ll fall into the 20s and possibly into the 2nd round.

4. The Jaguars shock us with their 1st round pick
It will be tough to top the Tyson Alualu selection, but GM Gene Smith will surprise us once again.  Maybe they decide to go for a quarterback? Mallett? Locker? Ponder? Or maybe they reach for a receiver? Titus Young? Torrey Smith?

3. Rumors of Da’Quan Bowers’ fall prove to be greatly overstated
Those screaming the loudest that Bowers knee is probably are probably the ones hoping he falls to them. I wouldn’t be shocked if he lands in Cleveland at No. 6 and I have a hard time seeing him fall further than No. 12 to the Vikings. Sorry Bucs fans, he’s not going be there at No. 20.

2. Jake Locker falls further than expected
Rumors have swirled that the Redskins may want him at No. 10. If I had to bet I’d say they do like him, but would prefer to wait until the 41st selection. Nothing he did on the field this year resembled a 1st-round pick, let alone a top-10 pick. Most teams love his talent – and it only takes one to make him a 1st-round pick – but he still has a 2nd or 3rd round grade on most draft boards. 

1. Only three quarterbacks will go in the 1st round
Despite rumors that as many as five signal callers could go in the top 32 picks, only three will actually come off the board – Newton, Gabbert and third (possibly to the Dolphins). Everyone else will wisely wait until the 2nd and 3rd round where less money will be on the line.

Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in 2011 NFL Draft Comments Off

Rams interested in trading down

Rams GM Billy Daveney has stated that he and his staff are already discussing the possibility of trading down on draft day.

It makes perfect sense and is probably their dream scenario unless Julio Jones is on the board.

The Rams only glaring need is a wide receiver, but only Jones and A.J. Green are likely to get top 15 grades from many teams. However, there could be two or three receivers – Torrey Smith, Jon Baldwin and Titus Young – worthy of a late 1st-round selection.

In addition to receiver, two other primary areas of need in St. Louis – outside linebacker and cornerback – are lacking mid-1st-round talent, making the move even more likely. In a situation where Jones, Akeem Ayers, Prince Amukamara and Jimmy Smith are all off the board, the Rams may be forced to trade down or settle for someone at a position that doesn’t fill a hole.

Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in 2011 NFL Draft, Rams Comments Off

Titus Young scouting report

Titus Young WR Boise State

Ht: 5’11′

Wt: 174

Explosive receiver with tremendous speed and overall athleticism. Best asset is his ability to make plays after the catch. Experienced on kick and punt returns. Polished route runner who knows how to find the soft spot in coverage. Has the speed to be a serious deep threat.
Possibly some character concerns; after an impressive freshman year Young was benched for nearly his entire sophomore season. Reasons for his punishment were never released. Hands are shaky; he’ll drop some easy passes and seems to struggle with fastballs from short distances.
Young isn’t your traditional elite receiver prospect due to his lack of size, but more and more teams are running a west coast offense and trying to find an explosive receiver to line up in the slot such as Wes Welker or Percy Harvin. Young compares favorably to Harvin in every aspect of his game (even the minor character concerns). He is explosive off the snap and turns into a running back once the ball is in his hands. His specific skill set isn’t a great fit for everyone, but in the right system he could be an extremely valuable addition who could contribute immediately. His ability to return kicks and punts is an added bonus.
Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in Scouting Reports - 2011 1 Comment

Prospects to watch in the MAACO Bowl

This is a disappointing matchup in so many ways. Obviously everyone is expecting a Boise State blowout, but it also hurts in our ability to evaluate the Broncos’ top draft prospects.

Nov 26, 2010; Reno, NV, USA; Boise State Broncos receiver Titus Young (10 catches a touchdown pass in the second quarter against the Nevada Wolf Pack at Mackay Stadium. Photo via Newscom

Titus Young is one of the most exciting receivers in college football

* Kellen Moore may be the most well-known name on the field, but the player who will make the biggest name for himself in the NFL is Broncos receiver Titus Young. He’s undersized and probably will never be a true No. 1 receiver at the next level, but he has the athleticism to be an electric slot receiver. We’ve seen a rise in small receivers filling a specialized role in recent years (Wes Welker, Mike Wallace, Percy Harvin, etc) and Young has a chance to join that group.

* Lining up opposite Young will be Austin Pettis. He is built more in the mold of a true No. 1 NFL receiver. However, he lacks the athleticism and speed to be a significant player at the next level. He should be a mid-round pick, but probably isn’t more than a third or fourth option at receiver in the NFL.

* Utah has a pair of top NFL prospects as well. Cornerback Brandon Burton is a fringe 1st-round prospect. He has the size and straight-line speed that will immediately catch the attention of those watching at the combine. It will be interesting to see how he matches up against Boise State’s receivers. He should be able to handle Pettis without any issues. However, he may not have the athleticism and quickness to stick with Young.

* One of the more underrated prospects in this game is Utah center Zane Taylor. He doesn’t have the measurables to be a high pick, but he has a chance to sneak into the late rounds. Given time to develop, he could be a starter down the road.

Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in 2011 NFL Draft Comments Off

Some quick thoughts on Friday’s games

- Cam Newton secured himself the Heisman today, but he was exposed by Alabama’s defense. In the first half they forced him to throw and he struggled. There’s no denying his talent, but he has a lot of work to do before he’s ready to be an effective NFL quarterback. His fundamentals are solid when he takes the time to set his feet, but too often he rushes to get the pass off and it results in diminished accuracy. Passes that miss by a 6-12 inches don’t hurt him often in college, but they will at the next level. And if he’s struggling with Alabama’s defense, these issues will only be magnified in the NFL.

- I’ve soured on Mark Ingram. I think he’s the next Ron Dayne. He can be a very effective running back in the right role, but I don’t think he can carry the load. He simply doesn’t have the athleticism to make people miss and I don’t think he is as powerful as someone like Jamal Lewis, who made a living running people over. I could justify taking him in the 2nd round, but I think he would be a reach in the 1st.

LAS VEGAS - OCTOBER 02: Quarterback Colin Kaepernick  of the Nevada Reno Wolf Pack runs for a touchdown against the UNLV Rebels in the first quarter of their game at Sam Boyd Stadium October 2, 2010 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Nevada Reno won 44-26. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

Colin Kaepernick may have a future at wide receiver

- Nevada QB Colin Kaepernick reminds me of Seneca Wallace. Physically, the differences are obvious (Kaepernick is about seven inches taller) but they play a very similar style of football. Both are elusive, but don’t have the bulk to be effective runners in the NFL – at least over the long haul. Like Wallace did in Seattle, Kaepernick may get a look at receiver, but I think he could develop into a decent backup – also like Wallace.

- Boise State WR Titus Young reminds me of Percy Harvin. He isn’t as fast as Harvin and isn’t as elusive, mostly because he’s slightly larger. But they can play similar roles in a NFL offense. He should be a 3rd or 4th-round selection, and could make an immediate contribution if he lands in the right system.

Posted on by Ryan McCrystal in 2011 NFL Draft Comments Off