Top 100: Monroe stays at No. 1
March: NFP’s Top 100
With the NFL draft now just 2½ weeks away, it’s time to take a broader look while breaking down the nation’s top 100 prospects. This is the second-to-last top 100 we’ll post before the draft, so there won’t be any significant changes in the coming weeks.
1. OT Eugene Monroe, Virginia
An athletically gifted tackle with the length and feet to become one of the league’s best.
2. OLB Aaron Curry, Wake Forest
Displays rare athletic ability for a player his size and looks like a real difference-maker in the NFL.
3. DT B.J. Raji, Boston College
The draft’s top defensive tackle, but he has some question marks as far as character is concerned.
4. WR Michael Crabtree, Texas Tech
On tape, the guy is one of the draft’s few elite talents.
5. QB Mark Sanchez, USC
Has ideal anticipation skills and accuracy for the position; only concern is experience.
6. OT Jason Smith, Baylor
Former tight end who possesses the feet and agility to handle the left side.
7. WR Jeremy Maclin, Missouri
A big-time playmaker who has the ability to separate on all levels of the field.
8. OT Andre Smith, Alabama
There are some character concerns, but his talent and base strength are undeniable.
9. DE Aaron Maybin, Penn State
A long-armed pass rusher who exhibits the first step and awareness to be a real force off the edge.
10. QB Matthew Stafford, Georgia
All the physical tools are there, but he has a tendency to lose the strike zone and get sloppy with his technique.
11. FS/CB Sean Smith, Utah
Exhibits impressive body control and footwork for a man his size; has the versatility to play corner and safety at the next level.
12. DE Robert Ayers, Tennessee
As NFL ready as any prospect in the draft.
13. RB Knowshon Moreno, Georgia
One of the most instinctive running backs to come along in years.
14. OLB/DE Everette Brown, Florida State
An ideal pass-rushing OLB who has the first step to consistently reach the corner.
15. CB/FS Malcolm Jenkins, Ohio State
Offers some versatility to an NFL secondary; possesses the ball skills and footwork to play either corner or safety.
16. RB Chris Wells, Ohio State
Showcases great feet and body control for a back of his dimensions, if he wants it, the sky is the limit.
17. DE/DT Jarron Gilbert, San Jose State
Has the strength, burst and length to play all over the defensive line.
18. DT Peria Jerry, Mississippi
One of the draft’s most underrated players, he has the ability to consistently penetrate at the next level.
19. DE Brian Orakpo, Texas
A physically gifted defensive end, but he doesn’t play as strong as his weight-room numbers indicate.
20. CB Alphonso Smith, Wake Forest
Plays with great balance and always puts himself in position to make plays.
21. TE Shawn Nelson, Southern Miss
His combination of size, athletic ability and length will allow him to make an instant impact at the next level.
22. OT Eben Britton, Arizona
His balance, footwork and base strength are simply too good to overlook.
23. OT Michael Oher, Mississippi
Has the talent to be a top-10 pick, but you worry about his instincts as a left tackle.
24. TE Brandon Pettigrew, Oklahoma State
The kind of dual receiving/blocking tight end threat that’s extremely tough to find.
25. DE Tyson Jackson, LSU
Has the power and length to make a seamless transition to the five-technique defensive end position.
26. DE/OLB/TE Connor Barwin, Cincinnati
It’s scary to think how good this kid could be if he specialized at one position.
27. OLB Clay Matthews, USC
Displays the athleticism and fluidity to play three downs in the NFL.
28. OT William Beatty, Connecticut
A graceful left tackle who displays good length and hand placement on the outside.
29. ILB Rey Maualuga, USC
Did a nice job at his pro day, running in the 4.7 range and showcasing better than anticipated athleticism.
30. WR Hakeem Nicks, North Carolina
A physical wideout who makes up for his lack of top-end speed with impressive route-running ability.
31. C Alex Mack, California
Plays with a mean streak and displays better athleticism than given credit for.
32. WR/RB Percy Harvin, Florida
Is dynamite with the ball in his hands, but can he separate on the outside in the NFL?
33. CB D.J. Moore, Vanderbilt
Has some of the best closing burst of any corner in the draft but lacks ideal straight-line speed.
34. CB Vontae Davis, Illinois
Displays great size/speed numbers, but I worry about his technique, instincts and willingness to get better.
35. CB Darius Butler, Connecticut
Isn’t afraid to stick his head in vs. the run and displays natural cover skills.
36. DT Evander Hood, Missouri
An explosive interior lineman who is very quick and does a nice job fighting through blocks.
37. DE Michael Johnson, Georgia Tech
Possesses a rare blend of physical skills but has yet to put it all together.
38. OLB Brian Cushing, USC
An instinctive linebacker who isn’t quite the prospect his press clippings would lead you to believe.
39. ILB James Laurinaitis, Ohio State
Relies on his instincts and technique but always finds a way to get after the ball.
40. FS/CB Sherrod Martin, Troy
A very fluid defensive back who has added value because of his versatility.
41. C Max Unger, Oregon
One of the most athletic centers to come along in years; has the versatility to kick out to tackle as well.
42. OLB Larry English, Northern Illinois
Looks like a pass-rushing 3-4 OLB to us.
43. WR Kenny Britt, Rutgers
Has the size and suddenness to develop into a No. 1-type receiver.
44. DE Lawrence Sidbury Jr., Richmond
His combination of balance and burst will make him tough to block at the next level.
45. OG Duke Robinson, Oklahoma
A physical road-grader inside who exhibits smooth feet for his size.
46. CB Asher Allen, Georgia
Possesses the fluidity to consistently stay with receivers out of their breaks.
47. DT Sen’Derrick Marks, Auburn
An explosive interior pass rusher who’s an ideal fit for a one-gapping scheme.
48. TE Jared Cook, South Carolina
Possesses the vertical speed to be a consistent threat down the field.
49. DT Ron Brace, Boston College
A physical interior lineman with the girth and power to eat up blockers.
50. WR Darrius Heyward-Bey, Maryland
Possesses an unparalleled combination of size and speed; could develop into one of the league’s top vertical threats.
51. RB Shonn Greene, Iowa
Isn’t a burner, but his combination of size, vision and footwork will serve him well at the next level.
52. SS William Moore, Missouri
Finally looks to be regaining his junior form after an injury-plagued senior season.
53. CB Kevin Barnes, Maryland
Has really impressed in postseason workouts after a shoulder injury derailed his 2008 season.
54. OT Phil Loadholt, Oklahoma
Looks like a potential starting RT in the NFL.
55. RB Donald Brown, Connecticut
Needs to become more patient but displays impressive power and burst between the tackles.
56. C Eric Wood, Louisville
A physical center who loves to maul defenders in the run game.
57. OG Herman Johnson, LSU
Massive interior lineman with the size and length to excel in a power-run scheme.
58. C Antoine Caldwell, Alabama
Has been the one center consistently overlooked this draft season, but he has starting potential.
59. FS Rashad Johnson, Alabama
Displays good instincts and elite ball skills in space.
60. RB LeSean McCoy, Pittsburgh
Doesn’t display the type of power or vision needed to create plays between the tackles but is definitely a big-play threat.
61. DT Dorell Scott, Clemson
A powerful interior lineman who combines an impressive first step with good power at the point of attack.
62. CB Coye Francies, San Jose State
A tall, rangy corner who has impressive ball skills and closing speed on all levels of the field.
63. DE David Veikune, Hawaii
Showcases a deceiving first step off the edge and exhibits the power and natural leverage to get under tackles and shed blocks.
64. TE James Casey, Rice
Possesses arguably the best ball skills of any player in the draft; will be able to consistently create mismatches in the pass game.
65. SS Chip Vaughn, Wake Forest
Displays an impressive frame and has the range and physicality to develop into a starter.
66. OG Andy Levitre, Oregon State
A former short-armed left tackle who possesses the footwork and technique to make a successful transition inside to guard.
67. QB Josh Freeman, Kansas State
Exhibits a rare skill set for the position but needs considerable time to develop.
68. OT Fenuki Tupou, Oregon
A massive tackle prospect with good power and smooth feet for his size.
69. TE Chase Coffman, Missouri
Possesses ideal ball skills and body control for the position with a willingness to block.
70. DT Mitch King, Iowa
Love his technique, motor and instincts inside; he’ll find a way to make an impact in a one-gap defensive scheme.
71. RB Andre Brown, N.C. State
A strong, between-the-tackles runner who has the power, vision and toughness to wear down opposing front sevens.
72. CB Joe Burnett, Central Florida
Showcases great closing speed and ball skills on all levels of the field.
73. ILB Frantz Joseph, Florida Atlantic
A physical, downhill linebacker who displays impressive power and quickness at the line of scrimmage.
74. WR Juaquin Iglesias, Oklahoma
Demonstrates better short-area quickness than given credit for and is one of the best route runners in the class.
75. DT Fili Moala, USC
Possesses a big, long frame with the potential to add versatility to an NFL defensive line.
76. OLB Marcus Freeman, Ohio State
Will never be a difference maker but has the instincts and skill set to start.
77. OT/OG Jamon Meredith, South Carolina
His quickness and athleticism make him an ideal zone-blocking-scheme lineman.
78. OLB Clint Sintim, Virginia
A pass-rushing OLB who is ready to contribute from day one.
79. SS Patrick Chung, Oregon
Relies on his instincts and savvy rather than his pure athleticism.
80. OG Trevor Canfield, Cincinnati
A tough, fluid guard who plays with a mean streak.
81. DE Kyle Moore, USC
Has the frame and base strength to develop in either a 4-3 or 3-4 defense.
82. RB Rashad Jennings, Liberty
An intriguing small-school back with a nice combination of size, power and athleticism.
83. OG T.J. Lang, Eastern Michigan
Former tackle who has the base strength and athleticism to excel inside.
84. OT Joel Bell, Furman
A tough, long-armed tackle with the athleticism and toughness to develop into a starter on either side.
85. OG Tyronne Green, Auburn
Possesses a devastating punch and will continue to improve with added technique to his game.
86. WR Brian Robiskie, Ohio State
I don’t know what all the hype is about. Best-case scenario, Robiskie is a No. 2 receiver with little upside.
87. TE Travis Beckum, Wisconsin
Will be a mismatch nightmare who will make a living flexed out in the slot.
88. DT/DE Alex Magee, Purdue
A long-armed tweener who has the versatility to play all along the defensive line.
89. QB Pat White, West Virginia
Has proved doubters wrong about his ability to play quarterback.
90. DE Matt Shaughnessy, Wisconsin
Lacks a first step but uses his hands well and has the frame to develop into a solid 4-3 or 3-4 DE.
91. CB Victor Harris, Virginia Tech
Isn’t a burner and displays sloppy footwork, but the kid has a real nose for the ball.
92. WR Mike Thomas, Arizona
The draft’s top slot receiver.
93. OLB/DE Paul Kruger, Utah
Is too much of a straight-line athlete and may be limited to a pass-rushing OLB role in a 3-4 defense.
94. OLB Tyrone McKenzie, South Florida
A fast-flowing linebacker who redirects cleanly in space and always seems to be around the football.
95. C Jonathan Luigs, Arkansas
Moves well for his size but will struggle at the point of attack at the next level.
96. FS Darcel McBath, Texas Tech
An underrated safety who always seems to be around the ball.
97. LB Kaluka Maiava, USC
As tough and hard-nosed as they come; has the ability to end up as a starter.
98. TE Cornelius Ingram, Florida
Bounced back nicely from a 2008 knee injury and looks to be regaining his 2007 form.
99. OT Xavier Fulton, Illinois
Has only played offensive line for two years, but his combination of athleticism and upside make him a very attractive prospect.
100. FS Louis Delmas, Western Michigan
A bit overrated because of a weak safety class, but the physical tools are there.
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