"When you have a guy who is with another player day after day, year after year, competing against him on the field and he gives you an honest evaluation and you trust that player and his evaluation, who knows better than him?"
It's now no secret that Bill Belichick likes to use his own players to know about their former teammates (whether college or pro). Although both Talib (a scout) and Blount (a "scoutee") both bolted Foxborough, it did not long take for Brandon LaFell to join his former teammate at LSU Stevan Ridley.
Can the same happen in this year's draft?
Off course, you could care less about these "past connections" in higher rounds. But late in / after day 3, where remaining prospects are there for a reason, these past connections might be what gives tiny edges over similar prospects at the same position.
Disclaimer: I excluded players from Alabama (Dont'a Hightower) , Rutgers (Logan Ryan / Duron Harmon) and Ohio State (Nate Ebner) because
I am too lazy BB himself has huge connections to these schools. I also excluded guys like Jason Barrett (former teammate of Josh Boyce) who will likely go in first 4 rounds.
Disclaimer 2: This is not a scouting report. I'm not here to analyze prospects but to INTRODUCE them. (Although I did put super brief comments based on what I saw from clips). I let people with more knowledge speak and analyze X and O's. (links, tweets etc). The thing called Google or Twitter is pretty useful too, just in case you've never heard of them.
Here are some potential reunions waiting to happen.
Khyri Thornton (DT)- Jamie Collins (Southern Miss.):
Thornton is pretty much another Jamie Collins at DT. A guy stuck in a bad program with freakish potential yet needs a lot of polish.
DT Khyri Thornton is light on his feet and has TONS of raw power. Explosive initial punch and constantly jarring blockers on tape.— Kevin Weidl (@KevinW_ESPN) March 21, 2014
You can read more about him here. http://withthefirstpick.com/2014/04/06/2014-nfl-draft-scouting-report-khyri-thornton-dt-southern-miss/
Gator Hoskins (TE / H-Back) & Garrett Scott (OG/OT) - Aaron Dobson (Marshall):
Gator Hoskins has already been mentioned at PP a lot so I withhold from elaborating more. Nonetheless, he's my favorite sleeper.
And Garrett Scott. Did not know about him till this morning.
Garrett Scott (T/G - Marshall) next. Super athletic. Flashes into second level and beats up LBs.— Joe G (@JoeGoodberry) April 18, 2014
Garrett Scott has started at LG, LT and RT. Needs to add weight to help anchor and drive in run game. Nice prospect with starter upside.— Joe G (@JoeGoodberry) April 18, 2014
Garrett Scott (T/G - Marshall) absorbing the bull rush, anchoring and then going on the offensive. pic.twitter.com/Jzdmp9on7J— Joe G (@JoeGoodberry) April 18, 2014
Garrett Scott in the second level. Rides the LB 10-yards down field. LB wanted no part of it. pic.twitter.com/OZAz9obz4q— Joe G (@JoeGoodberry) April 18, 2014
one last time: http://t.co/8zeU8UhMok Garrett Scott is not only a prospect, but a good prospect. very athletic. watch him— spencer (@SDG2635) April 17, 2014
Blake Annen (TE) - Kenbrell Thompkins (Cincinnati):
Nobody, including myself, knew about him until he absolutely aced at his pro day.
Cincinnati TE Blake Annen at Pro Day...6041, 247, 4.41, 4.37 & 7.19 Shuttle, 10 BJ, 35 VJ; 25 Reps. Full results http://t.co/clUYjrIjZN— Tony Wiltshire (@TonyWiltshire) March 7, 2014
Cincinnati's Blake Annen intriguing Tight End. 6-4 247 w/ a 4.42 40. Lacks production but cannot deny athleticism. Patriots very interested— NFL_DRAFT_Bites (@NFLDraftBites) March 30, 2014
Indeed the lack of production is worrisome but I did hear their QB situation was atrocious. Not to mention Thompkins did not put up huge numbers in his last year at UC after all.
Jay Bromley (DT/3-4 DE) - Chandler Jones (Syracuse):
He's a DT who had 10 sacks and 14.5 TFL as a senior in ACC. He's a perpetrator who moves well for his size and possess great initial quickness. Because he's somewhat questionable at run D#, many might compare him to Chris Jones. However, Bromley can create his "own" pressure (rather than "clear up" sacks) and has versatility to line up all over the DL, including 5-tech where Chris Jones was just flat out pituful. (Granted, Bromley is too small for a NT)
Read more at:
Bonus Track (AKA: I completely forgot about this guy when this piece was first published)
Quincy Enunwa (WR) - Alfonzo Dennard (Nebraska)
Enunwa is another favorite sleeper of mine. Although many are satisfied with WRs currently on the roster. Yet, he brings something new to the table. Size (6-2 225 lb) and physicality. In fact, he is arguably the most physical WR of this class, who can immediately contribute as a RZ threat. He has already drawn comparison to Anquan Boldin.
One last one - Quincy Enunwa had 10 red zone TDs on 16 red zone targets. Small number of targets, but crazy high number of successes— Fantasy Douche (@FantasyDouche) March 18, 2014
If every WR was as physical and as good of a blocker as Quincy Enunwa is my life would be a lot more enjoyable.— Thomas Melton (@TMeltonScouting) March 7, 2014
Boiler Room: WR Quincy Enunwa http://t.co/0oLOiKZN7p— Matt Waldman (@MattWaldman) April 9, 2014
Honorable Mention (AKA: Names I had to search specifically for this piece rather than knowing beforehand)
Dexter McDougal (CB) - Joe Vellano (Maryland)