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Green Zone League Articles

2015 Draft Spotlight: Offense (Part 2 of 2)
By Anthony Fernandez
Special to gzl-football.com

2015 GZL DRAFT PLAYER SPOTLIGHT
The Offensive Edition (Part 2 of 2)
AF, GreenZone Media Committee
Friday, May 3rd, 2013


QB Tyler Bray | Tennessee | 6’6” 232lbs
Breakdown: 96THP, 84THA, 67AWR
Tyler Bray comes with a bevy of off-the-field concerns, but that shouldn’t matter much here. From a pure talent standpoint, he’s got as good an arm and physical stature as anyone in the class. He is probably not field-ready, unless you plan to suffer for a year or two in the standings (perhaps stock-piling high picks in the process), but with our progression system he will be a beast in no time. He is strikingly similar to Bucs QB Freeman, who entered GZL with 67AWR, 97THP, 83THA – as well as the same 6’6” frame – and now is tops in almost all statistical categories after 5 seasons. Someone with an established veteran nearing the end – like Big Ben, Eli Manning, Jay Cutler – will find great value in nabbing Bray anywhere from the middle of the 1st to sometime early in the 2nd. There are even rumblings he could leapfrog E.J. Manuel in this draft, even though Manuel is much closer to contributing. Bray stock on the rise, as GMs are willing to look the other way on his character.
Comparison: Josh Freeman, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Initial Grade: 1st/2nd Round Pick.

OG Khalid Croons | N.C. State | 6’2” 311lbs
Breakdown: 64SPD, 60AGI, 75ACC, 95STR, 84PBK, 86RBK
Croons is a player that will move up draft boards because of what we have been seeing annually – OL is the one area where the incoming “stars” can’t keep up with the demand – unlike QB, HB, CB, etc. We saw a huge run on OL last year, including two guards, and it’s possible we see 4 more go in the Top 16 picks this year as well. While Crooms being 6’2” may limit his “draftability” as some GMs will view him as only a Guard and not a viable OT, he’s got truly rare speed and athleticism, and you probably want him as your pulling LG anyway, to clear out running lanes quickly. He’s a player that’s on the rise.
Comparison: Ben Grubbs, Baltimore Ravens
Initial Grade: 1st Round Pick.

C Will Figgins | Oklahoma | 6’3” 314lbs
Breakdown: 59SPD, 58AGI, 78ACC, 90STR, 87PBK, 88RBK
The college teammate of suspected Top 10 pick Lane Johnson, Figgins draft stock could really rise leading up to the draft. Let’s be straight – taking a lineman in the 1st is always kind of boring, but taking a CENTER is the most boring (aside from maybe a kicker – I’m looking at you, Houston). That said, we have a unique situation in GZL where Centers are Centers, and nothing else. You can’t take a Guard and move him over, which I think is going to drastically help Figgins’ stock. We have seen centers go in the 1st multiple times here in GZL, and I think the range for Figgins is anywhere from #14-#24. Someone will snatch him up and not have to address the center position for another decade.
Comparison: Maurkice Pauncey, Pittsburgh Steelers
Initial Grade: 1st Round Pick

HB Marcus Lattimore | South Carolina | 5’11” 221lbs
Breakdown: 90SPD, 90AGI, 93ACC, 73STR, 70CTH, 83CAR, 81BTK, 68INJ
Lattimore is not bad at anything, but will need a little help to become elite. His baseline measurables look a lot like Doug Martin who fell to 7th pick in the 2nd round. Martin had a respectable, yet pedestrian rookie campaign, but has had a huge sophomore season and is currently leading the league in yards from scrimmage. Lattimore has all that potential, and by all accounts should be a 1st Round pick, but it remains to be seen how much his medical scare and miraculous recovery will scare teams off of him. He will be great value at the top of the 2nd Round, if he makes it there. Anything in the Top 20 picks will be a bit of a gamble.
Comparison: Doug Martin, Green Bay Packers
Initial Grade: 2nd Round Pick.

WR Jessie Hendricks | Florida State | 6’5” 232lbs
Breakdown: 88SPD, 86AGI, 90ACC, 79CTH, 62STR, 40RBK
This is a weird class for WRs, where there are a lot of niche players, but not too many sure-fire #1 WRs like Julio Jones. Someone looking for an elite slot might take speedster Marquise Goodwin, or someone looking for someone who can develop into a legit #1/#2 WR would probably lean towards DeAndre Hopkins. There is another group of GMs in the league – headed up by GM Nic St. Marie – size junkies. Those GMs like St. Marie will have plenty of options to satiate their appetite in this draft. Hendricks is not the only guy who fits the bill – 6’4” Caz Dudley, 6’4” Levon Taylor, 6’5” Terrell Edwards, and 6’5” Cameron Shaw all have declared – but each guy will need considerable work to ever become more than a jump ball specialist. Of the group, the most game-ready might be Hendricks, which is why he could sneak into the 1st Round. Another big body prospect – WR Terrell Edwards from Auburn – towers at 6’5”, can block, and has some wheels. He’s being singled out because unlike many of these big bodies listed above (who GMs might finger as prospects to move to TE in a rather weak TE class) is the only prospect who fits all the criteria to make the jump from WR to TE for WK1 (with a preseason 10lb boost, that is). That could be enough to push the Auburn Tiger ahead of a few of the other slightly more talented guys mentioned above. Hendricks, however, will be a WR in GZL, and I highly doubt Miami passes on him 5 times in the 1st round.
Comparison: Vincent Jackson, St. Louis Rams
Initial Grade: 1st Round Pick.


Thanks for reading! Stay tuned for the two Defensive installments! Would love to hear your thoughts!


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