1. Thomas Welch, OT Vanderbilt.
2. Brandon Deadrick, DE Alabama
3. Kade Weston, DE/DT Georgia
4. Zac Robinson, QB Oklahoma State
Information after the jump!
Considered the Commodores' most gifted offensive lineman, Welch posted 11 starting assignments as a fifth-year senior despite struggling with an ankle sprain during the final six weeks of action … Switched to left tackle after starting as right tackle in 2008 … Opened season in outstanding fashion, earning team's Offensive Player of the Week honor after productive efforts against Western Carolina and Mississippi State … Through first half of season, consistently earning "winning" blocking grade by coaches despite lack of overall production by offensive unit … Suffered ankle injury at South Carolina and was forced to sideline for encounter against Florida … Tried to play with injury against Kentucky and Tennessee, but missed much of both games … Represented offensive line on the team's team's leadership council.
02/12/2010 - PRO POTENTIAL: LT Thomas Welch - Perhaps the team's best pro prospect, Welch got a chance to play Jan. 30 at the Senior Bowl as an injury replacement. Welch has the size and mean streak to play on an NFL line, but can he stay healthy?
Pass rush: At least moderate initial quickness, but lacks the acceleration to pressure the tackle's outside shoulder. Good use of leverage and strength for the bull rush. Effective swim move
Run defense: His greatest strength.
Explosion: Inconsistent, but flashes enough initial quickness off the snap to disrupt the timing of the play.
Strength: His most impressive trait.
Tackling: Only moderate lateral agility to break down and make the tackle against quicker athlete.
Intangibles: Immature early in his career, but according to coaches, developed into a leader as a senior. Was arrested on July 14, 2007 and charged with giving a false name to police, resisting arrest, and criminal mischief (for cracking the window inside a patrol car with his head). Was shot in 2009 by a would-be car thief. Deaderick confronted the thief and was shot once. The bullet went through his arm, through his hip and out of an area near his groin. Showing his toughness, Deaderick suited up and played against Virginia Tech less than five days later. Received the team's Up-Front Award for the outstanding lineman in 2008. Won the Billy Neighbors Defensive Lineman Award during spring practice in 2009.
I think that Deadrick will be a great surprise. I think he had an emotionally traumatizing senior year (being shot, grandma's death, etc) and that he can be refocused on the Patriots and be a great contributor to our 3-4 defensive line.
Appeared in 10 games recording 18 tackles. Tied career-high with five tackles vs. No. 18 Ga. Tech. Three tackles including 1.5 for loss at No. 11 LSU. Two-tackle performances at Auburn, vs. No. 8 Florida and at S. Carolina. Sat out the Georgia Southern and Central Michigan games due to an injury.
Accuracy: Only average overall accuracy. Able to consistently hit his man, but too often forces his receiver to adjust his route, limiting opportunities for yards-after-the catch.
Arm Strength: Doesn't own a howitzer, but has enough arm strength to be a successful NFL passer.
Setup/Release: Will be making the transition from the shotgun/spread offense.
Reading Defenses: Quickly scans the field, showing a good understanding of the offense.
On the Move: An underrated component to his game.
Intangibles: Highly respected by fans, teammates and coaches. Versatile athlete who saw time for the Cowboys at quarterback, wide receiver and running back. Proved his toughness as a senior gutting it out despite suffering from various injuries, including a strained hamstring and a concussion. Suffered the concussion absorbing a huge hit from Texas Tech safety Jamar Wall.
Summary: I see a solid quartet of depth players. I see Deadrick fighting for starting time at defensive end towards the later parts of the season. I see Weston playing this year's role of Darryl Richard- a semi-non-existent player who spends his time on the practice squad. I see Welch adding depth, but also being a practice squad player as Dante Scarneccia grooms him for a bigger role. I see Robinson sitting on the practice squad again, but I can also see him pushing Hoyer for the #2 spot behind Brady down the road.