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College Football: Week 9 Draft Stock Watch, Matchups and Notable Games

Week 9 Draft Stock

Top SEC Matchups

1) Florida DL Zachary Carter vs Georgia Offensive Line

In a war up front, both Carter and Georgia’s O-Line had their moments. Carter has some twitch to him and was physical at the point of attack, getting off the ball and into Georgia’s big, physical linemen. However, his “tweener” size and length limit his ability to disengage – seen on multiple occasions when opponents got to his pads. Though only credited with 1 defensive stop and 1 pressure, Carter was active and disruptive, helping to keep Florida in the game early.

2) Kentucky ED Josh Paschal vs Mississippi St. OT Charles Cross

Paschal is similar to Florida’s Zachary Carter as a slightly undersized, explosive player. Paschal was very disruptive in a losing effort, credited with 5 defensive stops, 2 TFL, and 1 pressure. He was a handful for State’s Charles Cross, particularly in their stretch zone run game. Paschal was across the ball and into Cross’s pads in a hurry all game, and was impossible to cut block with his pad level and developed hand use. Paschal reinforces who he is each week, while Cross has questions to answer.

3) Ole Miss ED Sam Williams vs Auburn OT Brodarious Hamm

Brodarious Hamm was the weak link in a strong performance by the Auburn OL (87.6 PFF bass block grade as a unit). Hamm continues to frustrate as a prospect with next-level size, length, and movement skills – but underwhelming film and production. Per PFF pass block grading, Hamm has not scored better than 64.2 against a Power 5 opponent this year. His struggles continued against Sam Williams, one of many SEC edge defenders with NFL traits. Williams blew by Hamm (for 2 pressures and a sack) as Hamm lacked urgency out of his stance, surrendering a very soft edge. Hamm is in need of a solid performance against a quality opponent.

2022 NFL Draft Stock Up:

  1. Georgia WR Kearis Jackson: 89.1 receiving grade – 3 rec. – 59 yds – 3 1st downs – 1 TD
  2. Missouri OT Javon Foster: 77.6 PFF grade – 75.1 pass block grade – 1 pressure allowed
  3. Georgia RB Zamir White: 79.8 rush Grade – 4 missed tackles forced – 92 yds after contact

2022 NFL Draft Stock Down:

  1. Kentucky OT Dare Rosenthal: 55.8 PFF grade – 20.3 pass black grade – 3 pressures allowed
  2. Auburn LB Owen Pappoe: 34.3 PFF grade – 32.8 coverage grade – 2 missed tackles
  3. Kentucky DT Justin Rogers: 56.8 PFF grade – 1 assist – 0 pressures

Eyes On Next Week

Week 10: Notable Games

Alabama vs LSU

  1. Alabama DL Phidarian Mathis vs LSU OL Ed Ingram
  2. Alabama OT Evan Neal vs LSU ED BJ Ojulari

Auburn vs Texas A&M

  1. Auburn LB Zakoby McClain vs Texas A&M RB Isaiah Spiller
  2. Auburn CB’s Roger McCreary, Nehemiah Pritchett vs Texas A&M TE Jalen Wydermyer

Top Big 12 Matchups

1) Texas Tech WR Erik Ezukanma vs Oklahoma CB Jaden Davis, S Delaarrin Turner-Yell 

Ezunkanma displays great size at 6-foot-3 and 220 pounds, and is not afraid to imitate contact with defender. He is shifty with ball in his hands displays the ability to make the first defender miss and consistently demonstrates the ability to utilize momentum to fall forward with tacklers. Ezukanma has the ability to win contested catches and demonstrated so in this game against Oklahoma CB Jaden Davis and S Delaarrin Turner-Yell on a back end zone fade route. The Red Raiders’ WR brought in 8 of his 9 targets on the day, 6 of which went for 1st downs.

2) West Virginia RB Leddie Brown vs Iowa St DB Greg Eisworth II 

Leddie Brown continues to be the workhorse that the Mountaineers offense relies upon bringing the senior to back to back games of over 100 yds rushing. At 5-foot-11 in and 216 pounds, Brown is best utilized between the tackles. He is a north-south runner who is no stranger to lowering his head to initiate contact, particularly on short yardage and goal line situations. Brown showed ability to make plays in space when motioned out in a WR screen scenario rubbing off of the inside hip of C Zach Frazier to pick up extra yardage on a first down reception. Iowa State DB Greg Eisworth met Brown in the hole numerous times on Saturday and the end result was at times being driven back a couple of yards or requiring additional tacklers from the secondary, or over pursuit that Brown exploited via a timely cutback. On the day the Mountaineers’ RB forced 8 missed tackles in route to 8 1st down rushes  and nearly 5.0 yards per carry en route to a rushing grade of 69.1, per PFF. 

3) Baylor DB Jalen Pitre vs Texas TE Jared Wiley 

Pitre is not afraid of putting his body in harms way and is willing to engage offensive blockers at the OT and TE position, initiating contact and timely releases targeting the ball carrier. The Baylor DB came up from his deep half of the field, shedding a blocker to scoop and return a fumble for 10 yards. Pitre might not always make the tackle, but he is often responsible for a absorbing blockers and forcing the RB to take cutbacks often times into less advantageous lanes. Texas TE Jared Wiley and the TE group as a whole had their hands full in terms of initiating and maintaining their blocks on Pitre, and frequently found themselves getting push back 1-2 yds from the line of scrimmage from the Bears DB. Although the stat sheet does not scream Pitre’s name, his ability to always be around the ball earned him the second highest defensive PFF grade in the Big 12 this week at 86.0.

2022 NFL Draft Stock Up:

  1. Texas Tech WR Erik Ezukanma: 8 rec 123 yds 15.4 avg 1 TD, 2 car 8 yds 4.0 avg 
  2. West Virginia WR Bryce Ford-Wheaton: 6 rec 106 yds 17.7 avg 2 TD long 45 yds 
  3. West Virginia RB Leddie Brown: 22 car 109 yds 4.9 avg 2 TD, 1 fumble, 5 rec 25 yds 5.0 avg

2022 NFL Draft Stock Down:

  1. Iowa St QB Brock Purdy 16/27 185 yds 6.9 avg 1 TD, 9 car 64 yds 1 TD, 1 fumble
  2. Texas Tech QB Henry Colombi 7/12 77 yds 6.4 avg, 1 TD 1 Int, 1 car 0 yds 
  3. Texas Tech CB Demarcus Fields 8 tackles, 2 missed tackles, 8 targets allowing 7 receptions.

Eyes On Next Week

Week 10: Notable Games

Oklahoma St vs West Virginia

  1. West Virginia RB Leddie Brown vs Oklahoma St LB Malcolm Rodriguez 
  2. Oklahoma St WR Tay Martin vs West Virginia CB Jackie Matthews 

Baylor vs TCU

  1. Baylor RB Abram Smith vs TCU LB Dee Winters 
  2. Baylor WR Tyquan Thornton vs TCU CB Tre’vius Hodges-Tomlinson  

Top Big 10 Matchups

1) Michigan State RB Kenneth Walker III vs Michigan’s Defense

There might not be any player in all of college football who has improved their draft stock more in 2021 than Kenneth Walker III. Walker has put up impressive numbers every week, and this week was no exception. Against the best defense he has played all season, Walker had his best game of the year. Michigan State was able to rely on Walker all day and he is one of the biggest reasons they won the game. He ran for 197 yards and 5 touchdowns on 23 carries. He had long touchdown runs of 58 yards, 23 yards, and 27 yards. Walker’s vision and patience behind the LOS have been very impressive this season. Walker has cemented himself as one of the top running back prospects in the country.

2) Michigan State OT AJ Arcuri vs Michigan ED Aidan Hutchinson

Aidan Hutchinson is one of the top prospects in the country and he shows flashes of excellence every week. AJ Arcuri aligns at RT for the Spartans and he projects there due to his adequate athletic ability. This was something that was evident in this matchup. Hutchinson is a much better athlete and was able to make Arcuri uncomfortable. To help slow down Hutchinson, the Spartans sent a lot of double teams and chipped Hutchinson often. Arcuri held his own against Hutchinson in the passing game for the most part, though Hutchinson showed flashes and his wide variety of pass rush moves. In the run game, Hutchinson was able to anchor well against Arcuri. If Michigan State didn’t throw as many chips and double teams his way, Hutchinson would have been much more disruptive. Despite it not being a perfect game for Arcuri, it was encouraging that he was able to stay in front of Hutchinson for a majority of his pass sets.

3) Penn State OT Rasheed Walker vs Ohio State EDs Zach Harrison and Tyreke Smith

This matchup exposed a big problem for Rasheed Walker, and that problem is hand placement. Walker’s hand placement and punch timing was exposed in this game. Walker did not see much time against Smith, but Smith got the best of him when they did face each other. Smith had his two biggest plays of the game against Walker. One being a sack, in which Harrison was able to meet him at the QB at the same time after beating the RT, and their combined sack forced a fumble that was returned for a touchdown. The other big play was a pressure in the fourth quarter that forced Sean Clifford to throw an interception. It was created by a beautiful spin move that left Walker in no man’s land. Walker’s hand placement and punch timing causes him to lunge, which is something you can’t do against a player as talented as Harrison. Harrison was able to get one QB hit due to his ability to swipe Walker’s hands away. Harrison also created a pressure and batted down the pass on the same play against Walker as well. Harrison had a season high eight pressures in this game, although all but two came against players not named Walker, and three of them came from him not being blocked.

2022 NFL Draft Stock Up:

  1. Michigan State RB Kenneth Walker III - 23 carries, 197 yards, 5 touchdowns
  2. Indiana TE Peyton Hendershot - 6 targets, 6 catches, 106 yards, 2 touchdowns, 91.6 PFF grade
  3. Michigan ED David Ojabo - 2 sacks, 5 total pressures, 1 QB hit, 1 TFL, 93.1 PFF grade, 93.4 pass rushing grade

2022 NFL Draft Stock Down:

  1. Ohio State OT Nicholas Petit-Frere - 5 total pressures allowed, 26.2 pass blocking grade
  2. Penn State OT Rasheed Walker - 4 total pressures allowed, 1 sack allowed, 34.7 pass blocking grade
  3. Iowa RB Tyler Goodson - 13 carries, 27 yards, 2.1 YPC, 52.4 PFF grade

Eyes On Next Week

Week 10: Notable Games

Maryland vs Penn State

  1. Maryland OT Jaelyn Duncan vs Penn State EDs Arnold Ebiketie & Jesse Luketa
  2. Penn State WR Jahan Dotson vs Maryland CBs Jakorian Bennett & Kenny Bennett

Michigan State vs Purdue

  1. Michigan State OT AJ Arcuri vs Purdue ED George Karlaftis
  2. Michigan State RB Kenneth Walker III vs Purdue’s Defense

Top ACC Matchups

1) Virginia QB Brennan Armstrong vs BYU SAF Malik Moore 

Despite the gaudy numbers, Brennan Armstrong didn’t perform as well as the box score might show. He threw 2 interceptions and came away with his second lowest-graded performance of the season. Surprisingly, Armstrong was actually very effective with his legs this game rushing for 94 yards and a pair of touchdowns. A week after posting his best performance of the season, Malik Moore took a step back on Saturday. He finished with the day with near season-lows in overall grade, run defense, and coverage. 

2) Pitt QB Kenny Pickett and WR Jordan Addison vs Miami Secondary

Kenny Pickett threw the ball 55 times in this loss to Miami, as they trailed for much of the game, and he was mostly very good. His two interceptions were problematic, but he made six big time throws, converted 26 first downs through the air, and threw for 519 yards and three TDs. Addison, like usual, was his favorite target, converting 9 of his 12 targets into receptions for 158 yards. With five receptions of 15-plus yards, Addison was a consistent explosive play threat that Miami had to always be aware of.

3) Boston College WR Zay Flowers vs Syracuse CBs Garrett Williams and Duce Chestnut

Zay Flowers was the only real threat in the passing game for Boston College in a game where both teams really struggled through the air. Lined up against two young but extremely talented corners, Flowers was targeted 12 times, catching six of them for 116 yards. He was constantly trying to stretch the field, with his average target being 20.5 yards downfield. Williams and Chestnut coped pretty well with him and the Boston College passing game in general, allowing 7 catches on 15 targets between them for a combined 128 yards.

2022 NFL Draft Stock Up:

  1. Wake Forest QB Sam Hartman: 24/37 (64.8%) 402 yards 3 TD 0 INT, 92.2 PFF Grade  
  2. Virginia Tech WR Tre Turner: 12 targets, 7 receptions, 187 yards, 1 TD, 82.0 PFF Grade
  3. Clemson DE Xavier Thomas: 6 pressures, 4 hurries, 1 sack, 91.8 PFF Grade

2022 NFL Draft Stock Down:

  1. Clemson WR Joseph Ngata: 5 targets, 3 receptions, 52 yards, 0 TDs, 65.6 PFF Grade 
  2. Boston College C Alec Lindstrom: 1 sack allowed, 1 snap over the QBs head, 52 PFF Grade
  3. NC State RB Zonovan Knight: 11 carries, 23 rushing yards, 1 reception, 2 receiving yards, 56.3 PFF Grade

Eyes On Next Week

Week 10: Notable Games

Wake Forest vs North Carolina 

  1. Wake Forest SAF Traveon Redd vs North Carolina QB Sam Howell
  2. Wake Forest QB Sam Hartman vs. North Carolina SAF Cam’Ron Kelly

Clemson vs Louisville 

  1. Clemson LB James Skalski vs Louisville QB Malik Cunningham/RB Hassan Hall
  2. Clemson OT Jordan McFadden vs Louisville EDGE Yaya Diaby

Top PAC 12 Matchups

1) Oregon State Trevon Bradford vs California’s Secondary

Bradford lined up as an outside receiver and found success there this week. He showed good vertical speed. In addition, he had good spatial awareness and understood where defenders were during his routes and used this knowledge to come back for catches. Five of his catches were for first downs, and he used his speed to generate 3 explosive plays. His only knock were his 2 drops, both which would have been tough receptions. 

2) Stanford ED Gabe Reid vs Washington Jaxson Kirkland

Reid did a good job of using his superior athleticism to beat Kirkland often. Kirkland struggled to keep up with Reid’s speed around the edge. Reid did a good job on stunts as well, providing opportunities for his teammates and taking advantage of the opportunities given to him. He struggled at the POA in run defense, but did a good job scraping down the LOS on plays opposite his side.

3) Utah ED Mike Tafua vs UCLA OT Jon Gaines II

Gaines II got the start in this game for the injured Alec Anderson. He saw a heavy dose of Tafua and handled him well. Gaines II did a good job containing him, as Tafua had 4 total pressures and just an 8.3% win rate. Gaines II utilized his length and strength to recover well against Tafua’s pass rush but struggled at times blocking him in the run. Tafua did a good job winning at the POA in the run while holding the LOS. 

2022 NFL Draft Stock Up:

  1. Washington State WR Calvin Jackson Jr. - 8 rec, 139 yards, 1 TD, 3 explosive plays, 79.9 PFF
  2. Oregon QB Anthony Brown - 25/31, 307 yards, 3 TDs, 0 INTs, 7 carries, 38 yards, 3 big time throws, 0 turnover worthy plays, 88.9 PFF
  3. Stanford ED Gabe Reid - 6 TOT, 3 solo, 5 total pressures, 78.7 PFF

2022 NFL Draft Stock Down:

  1. USC WR Drake London - Injured (fractured ankle), 9 rec, 81 yards, 2 TDs, 6 missed tackles forced, 87.4 PFF
  2. California IDL JH Tevis - 1 TOT, 1 solo, 1 total pressure, 28.4 PFF
  3. Stanford QB Tanner McKee - 21/32, 194 yards, 2 INTs, 3 turnover worthy plays, 3 dropped passes, 52.4 PFF

Eyes On Next Week

Week 10: Notable Games

USC vs Arizona State

  1. USC’s Interior Offensive line v Arizona State IDL DJ Davidson 
  2. USC ED Drake Jackson v Arizona State OT Kellen Diesch

Oregon vs Washington

  1. Oregon ED Kayvon Thibodeaux v Washington OT Jaxson Kirkland
  2. Oregon OT’s v Washington ED Zion Tupuloa-Fetui