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2017 NFL Draft Prospects: Love/Hate March Edition

Mississippi Rebels tight end Evan Engram (17) runs past Alabama Crimson Tide defensive back Ronnie Harrison (15) during the fourth quarter against the Alabama Crimson Tide at Vaught-Hemingway Stadium. Alabama won 48-43.
Matt Bush-USA TODAY Sports

A monthly feature providing opinions on the most underrated and overrated 2017 NFL draft prospects by position group throughout the pre-draft process. (Click for our January and February editions.)



Evan Engram, TE, Mississippi

Engram had an excellent Combine performance. The Ole Miss tight posted the best numbers among tight ends in the 40-yard dash (4.42 seconds), vertical jump (36.0 inches), 3 cone drill (6.92 seconds), and 20 yard shuttle (4.23 seconds). These numbers more resemble that of a wide receiver. With his 6’3” size and stellar Combine numbers, many have actually pondered the thought of moving Engram to wide receiver. No matter where a team lines him up, he will be a matchup nightmare. - Matt Cohen

Amara Darboh, WR, Michigan

A native of Sierre Leone, Darboh is savvy possession receiver with prototypical size. He is a tough and willing blocker who improved every season with the Wolverines. After turning heads at the Senior Bowl, his 4.45 dash at the combine was considerably faster than expected. Would be a nice value pick at the end of the third round- Vasilis Lericos


Cooper Kupp, WR, Eastern Washington

I wasn’t particularly impressed with Kupp’s 40 time (4.62 seconds), and he didn’t help himself in receiver drills either. Kupp had multiple drops on very catchable throws in drills. For a receiver that will likely be put in the slot, I wanted to see more reliable hands. - Matt Cohen

David Njoku, TE, Miami

Njoku, a prospect hyped for his athleticism, ran just the seventh fastest 40 among tight ends at the combine. He is not a strong blocker and has had issues with drops. Engram offers the same Jordan Reed upside without the Eric Ebron downside - Vasilis Lericos

Offensive Line


Garett Bolles, OT, Utah

Bolles came into the Combine hyped as one of the more athletic linebackers in this year’s draft class, hype that he lived up to at the Combine. Bolles ran a sub-five second 40-yard dash, and was one of then smoothest lineman in drills. Bolles athletic traits will be a large help to him against speedy edge rushers in the NFL. The Utah product’s Combine performance made him the top lineman in this year’s class in my eyes. - Matt Cohen

Dorian Johnson, OG, Pitt

Durable, consistent former bluechip recruit excels at reaching linebackers on the second level when run blocking. He is strong, agile and athletic with a great frame to add mass. Johnson skill set is a perfect fit for the Ravens blocking scheme. Expected to be selected on Day 2. - Vasilis Lericos


Cam Robinson, OT, Alabama

Whatever Bolles did well, Robinson did poorly. Robinson came into the Combine with questions regarding his athletic ability and his balance. His performance did nothing to alieviate those concerns. Robinson is likely still in a first round talent, as he wasn't successful his whole career facing NFL caliber SEC pass rushers, but he will need to work on his balance in order to be successful, especially if he ends up in Seattle, a team he has been consistently mocked to, and has to face Chandler Jones twice a year. - Matt Cohen

Zach Banner, OG, USC

Lincoln Kennedy’s son is a giant, he measured at 6’8” 353 In Indianapolis and played at close to 400 pounds at USC. Even if he can keep his weight down as a pro, he is a slow footed, one dimensional drive blocker without much upside. - Vasilis Lericos

Defensive Front


Derek Barnett, Edge, Tennessee

To me, Barnett evokes countless comparisons to Terrell Suggs. Both Suggs and Barnett had incredible production in college, both have nearly the exact same height and weight, and both approached the draft process with questions regarding their athleticism. As a result, Suggs slid to the Ravens, can Barnett do the same? Barnett looked more agile in Combine drills compared to when Suggs went through the Combine. If the Ravens are looking for a replacement for Terrell Suggs, Barnett may be the perfect choice. - Matt Cohen

Tyus Bowser, Edge, Houston

Explosive pass rusher is expected to be selected on Day 2 after dominating the combine. A former basketball player, Bowser is still learning the game and his sack production could have been better. But he made great strides holding the edge against the run last season and has excellent burst when pass rushing. His fluid change of direction allows him to contribute in coverage as well, making him a complete outside linebacker prospect. - Vasilis Lericos


Reuben Foster, ILB, Alabama

This has nothing to do with his on field talent, but everything to do with issues off of it. While we don’t know the exact details of what occurred between Reuben Foster and a doctor that ended up in his being sent home from the Combine, it will be concerning until we know more. Why was the incident bad enough to force him to be sent home? Until this question is answered I’m not fully onboard. - Matt Cohen

Zach Cunningham, LB, Vanderbilt

The late first round buzz is unwarranted. At the combine, Cunningham weighed just 234 pounds and posted only 15 reps on the bench press, poor measurables for a linebacker. His tape shows a player who struggles to get off blocks and is often overpowered. - Vasilis Lericos



Gareon Conley, CB, Ohio State

For me, Conley has been one of the biggest draft risers over the last few weeks. Conley posted strong numbers in every Combine drill, including the fastest time among defensive backs in the 3-cone drill. Even in footwork drills, Conley was one of the more impressive players in Indianapolis. Conley may have even worked himself into the top 20 following the injury of Sidney Jones. - Matt Cohen

Adoree’ Jackson, CB, USC

Versatile quick twitch athlete is a bit undersized. However his quickness, ability to mirror in coverage and ball skills make him an appealing fourth corner. Several scouts consider Jackson the best college kick returner they have ever evaluated. Adding an electric return man to the Ravens already elite special teams would guarantee an advantage in the fifth phase every single week. - Vasilis Lericos


Teez Tabor, CB, Florida

For me, Tabor dropped to a second round pick after a dreadful combine performance. Once regarded as the top corner in this class, Tabor was out played by his teammate Quincy Wilson in 2016. The downward spiral will continue for Tabor as he posted a 4.62 time in the 40-yard dash. - Matt Cohen

Obi Melifonwu, SS, UConn

Obi broad jumped 11’9” a number bested only by fellow Husky Byron Jones world record 12’3”. If late first round projections are accurate, he will be overdrafted based on athleticism. He lacks the instincts of Kam Chancellor and is scheme dependent . - Vasilis Lericos