Every year around Draft time, I think we all are drawn to certain players who do not have a first round grade. For one reason or another, we feel like these players will have a chance to stick in the pros. If they do not end up on a rival team, we probably will root for them to do well. They are our guys in the NFL Draft.
In 2016, these are my guys. I do not necessarily think these players are destined for stardom. There is just something about them that makes me feel like they have a chance to beat their current projections.
Kevin Hogan, QB, Stanford
Hogan has a lot of starting experience, and he did some advanced things in the Stanford offense. One of the big knocks on him is a limited set of physical tools. In the middle rounds, I'll take the more physically limited player who has a sophisticated understanding of the nuances of the position over a guy with great physical tools and no understanding of how to play the position any day of the week. It is very difficult to learn how to play the quarterback position. Starting from scratch in the NFL is virtually impossible. Hogan does have some mechanical issues to clean up, but I like the place from which he is starting.
Jordan Howard, RB, Indiana
GGN member Crackback turned me onto this guy by constantly raving about him. I like the way this guy runs a lot. I think he gets through contact and grinds out extra yardage as well as any back in this class. I also think he is a pretty good pass blocker, which is an area where young backs frequently struggle.
Tavon Young, CB, Temple
He is an undersized corner, but I like his physicality. I also think he is more fluid than people give him credit for being. He first caught my eye with the job he did against Will Fuller when Temple played Notre Dame. Young did a really good job holding Fuller in check. He might be limited to the slot because of his size, but I'm not totally convinced this is the case.
Clayton Fejedelem, S, Illinois
The first buzz I heard about him was during the East-West Shrine Game practices. I thought he played very well when I caught the actual game. On what footage I was able to find of his, I was very impressed by the way he pursues the ball. The PFF Draft guide also charted him and found he made big tackles in the run game at a higher rate than any other safety in this class. He also has a great story, leaving a small school to try out for Illinois with no guarantee of a roster spot. A late growth spurt led him to be overlooked in college recruiting. I haven't seen as much of his work as I have the other guys here, but I have liked what I have been a lot.
Who are your guys?