Talent evaluation is a tricky thing, if professional NFL scouts regularly get it wrong, what chance do us mere part-timers have. We do our best here at GGN to evaluate as many prospects as we can in the time we have available. Some we'll get right, some we'll get wrong, that's the life of scouting.
We've spoken a lot about the players we like, the players we think will make a difference at the next level. However most of us will have a couple of players who we'd prefer to avoid, and that's what I want to talk about today. Which projected first round prospects would you bury your head in your hands, if the Jets were to select them?
Now, all first round prospects have talent. All first round prospects have a good chance of becoming something special, they've been highlighted by scouting departments as the best of the best. So the guys I list below, I 100% accept that they could go on to be stars, and I'm sure some if not all of them will do. However there is something about each of these prospects that gives me that bad feeling deep down. We all know that feeling, the 'something is about to happen, and I'm not going to like it feeling'. I know a lot of you guys will disagree, and that's the whole point of this article.
Here are two players who are potential first round selections that I have a bad feeling about:
O.J Howard, TE, Alabama
People love Howard and it's easy to see why. He's big, athletic, fast and one of the most gifted athletes in this class. I also know that maybe Alabama under-utilised him, but when I watch him, I see a great athlete, rather than a great football player. He had average production in college, and maybe that was all down to the scheme. I was reading a report on Howard the other day and the word passive was used, and that's what I see too much of. His effort level with his blocking is largely quite poor and he shows no urgency on the field at all. He has huge potential, but I'm just wary of him. He could be an absolute monster, he could also be an absolute bust and offer average production over the next few years, that's not a risk I'm willing to take at the TE position with a top 10 selection. I just had a bad feeling about him.
Marshon Lattimore, CB, Ohio State
Is Lattimore the most mocked player to the Jets? It seems that way. Let me say this, I think Lattimore has every single chance of becoming one of the best players at his position in the NFL. He has everything. He has the speed, the instincts, the fluidity, the strength and the awareness. He is excellent in press-man coverage and shows an ability to disrupt receivers straight off the line, something Todd Bowles would love. The only reason he's on my list of players to be wary of, is injuries. He's played one full year for the Buckeyes and that's down to his hamstrings, a chronic injury that required surgery. The sudden movements needed from a corner put a lot of stress on the hamstrings, and we can't afford another bust in the secondary. If he stays healthy, he's likely a star...but that's a big if.