With the Draft fast approaching, it's time to start looking at some potential players for the Patriots. I'm going to put profiles of 2 players a day- one offense, one defensive- and gain a better understanding of the players in the draft.
Maryland's Bruce Campbell has been fluctuating his stock this off-season- but he's been doing everything correctly. He was often ranked as a top 15 pick, going as high as top 10, prior to the combine, but due to his combine performance, his stock has been dropping and has been projected as a second round prospect. While that may sound like he had a terrible combine, his combine performance was the best out of every single offensive tackle. I think his stock has dropped so far down that he has become undervalued. I'll call it "Anti-Raiders" syndrome- his combine was so good that teams began to be afraid of him- because he seems like an ideal Raiders player. However, the fact remains that only has 17 starts in college (contrast that to Oklahoma State's Russell Okung who has started since his freshman year), which means that Campbell remains a semi-project player with an inredible amount of upside. Is he the next Jake Long? Or will he be the offensive version of Vernon Gholston?
His measurements and some quotes after the jump.
Height: 6-6. Weight: 314.
Projected 40 Time: 4.94.
Combine 40 Time: 4.85.
Benchx225: 34. Arm: 36 1/4.
Player Comparison: Branden Albert. Albert and Campbell have great physical tools, but I think Campbell is more of a natural left tackle. Both were raw offensive tackle prospects.
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03/26/2010 - TOP RATED NFL DRAFT SCOUT OFFENSIVE TACKLES: *Bruce Campbell, Maryland, 6-7, 314, 1-2: Campbell was a workout wonder at the scouting combine, adding fuel to his rising stock up draft boards based on promise rather than production. His size and natural athletic ability are obvious, as reflected by his fastest clocking of 4.75 seconds in the 40-yard dash and a 32-inch vertical leap at the combine. But he could have used more experience. Campbell became a starter for the last seven games of his sophomore year. He missed three games last season with a sprained left medial collateral ligament and turf toe. His pass-blocking technique is to attack rushers, a tactic that could backfire against experienced and opportunistic NFL defensive ends. - Frank Cooney, The Sports Xchange, NFLDraftScout.com/CBS Sports/USA TODAY
02/16/2010 - PRO POTENTIAL: Maryland has three players invited to the NFL combine, with two others making postseason all-star games. Only one is expected to be a first-day selection, but the Terrapins could see multiple players taken in the upcoming draft. OL Bruce Campbell battled injuries throughout his Maryland career, starting 17 games as a Terp including nine in 2009 at left tackle. He has the size and strength to start in the NFL, but is still raw and needs to show that he can stay healthy in order to justify the high expectations at the next level. Campbell is expected to be a first- or second-round pick in the upcoming draft.
Campbell is a good sized left tackle prospect that is a bit ahead of the curve, technique wise, over most underclass linemen. He is quick to set the edge and does a good job of jamming opponents with heavy hands and can be quick to get a refit when the pass rusher slaps his hands away. He has struggled with durability in that he has yet to play in every game during a collegiate season and will need to be gone over with a fine toothed comb by team doctors. He gets a bit lazy with his techniques and can be late to recognize or react to new situations but his physical talents are undeniable and he should be quick to come off some team’s draft board.
Campbell possesses a rare combination of size and athleticism for an offensive lineman. Uses hand punch effectively. Excels in pass protection and can handle speed rushers off the edge. Does a good job of sustaining his blocks. Is a competitive performer. Exhibits impressive initial quickness out of his stance in the running game.
Durability is a major concern as Campbell has dealt with multiple ailments including a brain issue. Will overextend into blocks and lunge at defenders on occasion. His instincts are questionable, especially in the running game when moving to the second level.
Verdict: As I said, I think Campbell has seen his stock drop so much that he has become undervalued. He could be the perfect project player for the Patriots offensive line if he's available in the middle of the second round- which seems like a possibility more and more leading up to the draft. He has the size to be a left tackle, but after reading about his skill set, he seems like a strong player and a player who would be perfect right tackle prospect. He can handle the fast and strong rushers, but he has some trouble against players with strong pass rush skill sets. Seems like a player who would be protecting a quarterback's blind side and if he's available in the middle of the second, he could be a steal.