The NFL scouting combine is in the rearview mirror, and teams are starting to firm up their draft boards. Sure, there will be adjustments to their rankings, but for the most part opinions are starting to solidify on the best players in the 2017 NFL draft and how they stack up.
Here’s our list of the players that just missed our Top 50 list — the lplayers on which we will roll out, one per day, as we close in on the seven-week mark from the draft. It was comprised based on our own film study, conversations with NFL and college teams’ staffs, and crosschecked against independent (non-media) scouting lists and evaluations.
A quick teaser: Players such as Oklahoma’s Joe Mixon, Wisconsin’s T.J. Watt, Connecticut’s Obi Melifonwu, Ohio State’s Curtis Samuel and some others who don’t appear here were good enough to crack our Top 50.
Note: This list is subject to change based on pro day results, changes in medical evaluation and any new information we gather over the coming weeks.
51. Washington CB Kevin King — Long, gifted athlete who has improved stock as much as anyone past few months, but tackling issues are legit worry.
52. North Carolina State S Josh Jones — Well-built, surprisingly athletic Mike Mitchell clone could sneak into back end of Round 1.
53. South Alabama TE Gerald Everett — Tiny hands, but he has good athletic traits, willingness to block and potential to improve.
54. Colorado CB Chidobe Awuzie — Versatile, experienced corner who could end up a No. 2 or a nickel. Good slot blitzer, too. Should go off the board early Day 2.
55. Texas A&M S Justin Evans — Some years, he might be a top-40 pick. Big hitter who can make acrobatic plays but also can be inconsistent and overaggressive.
56. East Carolina WR Zay Jones — High-volume, high-character receiver with quickness, good hands. Could end up in top 50.
57. Utah S Marcus Williams — Super athletic, playmaking safety who is best playing a center field position.
58. USC WR JuJu Smith-Schuster — Emotions cripple him at times, but he’s a physical, confident, speed-deficient split end with Hakeem Nicks-like game.
59. Kansas State DE Jordan Willis — Big combine performance answered questions about his lateral quickness. Has a winner’s makeup.
60. Ohio State LB Raekwon McMillan — Instinctive player who flashes but also might not be a tone-setting “Mike” in the NFL.
61. Cal QB Davis Webb — Highly confident, short-area passer with big frame who could be drafted higher (Round 1?) than many realize.
62. Michigan DL Chris Wormley — Chances are we’ll look back in five years and this will be too low. Strong, hard-working and pretty productive.
63. Florida CB Teez Tabor — Tape looks very good at times, but athletic limitations, character concerns and big persona make him a bit of a concern.
64. Ohio State OG-C Pat Elflein — Lumbering grinder who could anchor a power-run team at either position. Could be tone setter for young team.
65. Florida S Marcus Maye — In a talented Gators secondary, he occasionally looked like its best and most versatile member.
66. Eastern Washington WR Cooper Kupp — Extremely reliable and driven short-area slot receiver with limited long speed and upside.
67. Penn State WR Chris Godwin — Stock on fire since big Rose Bowl. Fluid, well-built athlete with athleticism but suffers from concentration lapses.
68. Temple OG Dion Dawkins — Likely fits inside in the pros after starting predominantly at tackle. Quietly solid performer.
69. Colorado S Tedric Thompson — Experienced, instinctive playmaker who got a bit lost in talented Buffaloes secondary.
70. LSU C Ethan Pocic — Smart, jack of all trades who might work best in zone-based scheme. Not clear if college position of center will be his NFL home at 6-foot-6.
71. Auburn DE Carl Lawson — We’re still believers in this violent, talented end, but NFL teams have cooled on him just a bit.
72. Texas A&M DE Daeshon Hall — Overshadowed opposite Myles Garrett, Hall has intriguing athletic traits and pass-rushing upside.
73. Virginia Tech TE Bucky Hodges — Few pass catchers have his rare gifts. Few frustrate more with hands, route running and blocking effort.
74. UCLA CB Fabian Moreau — Explosive athlete’s stock was on rise prior to torn pectoral during bench press. Could fall into Round 3 range after looking like top-50 pick at one point.
75. Alabama WR ArDarius Stewart — Another playmaker lost in the loaded Bama shuffle, Stewart is tough and smart and could develop into an NFL No. 2 option.
76. Villanova DT-DE Tanoh Kpassagnon — Physique of a Greek god, but still occasionally looks like he has no clue. Has some low second-round grades.
77. Ashland TE Adam Shaheen — Small-school wonder with rare size, decent movement skills. Fascinating developmental project.
78. Auburn DT Montravius Adams — Could be drafted higher in thin DT draft but strong talent always seems to leave you wanting more.
79. Cal WR Chad Hansen — Underrated playing speed, good hands give him chance to be an eventual No. 2 option.
80. Houston pass rusher Tyus Bowser — Active, athletic, ascending converted hoopster but some rawness to his game. Possible second-round pick.
81. Texas RB D’Onta Foreman — Big, smooth, fast runner who could have LeGarrette Blount-like impact on the right team.
82. Nevada WR Carlos Henderson — Make-you-miss receiver but a one-year breakout player who needs route-running refinement.
83. Clemson CB Cordrea Tankersley — Height-weight-speed prospect who gets overdrafted. Handsy cover man with inconsistent tape.
84. Oklahoma RB Samaje Perine — Unlike teammate Joe Mixon, Perine’s character is considered impeccable, and he could turn into a powerful change-of-pace runner.
85. West Virginia CB Rasul Douglas — If you are a zone team, such as Seattle, this is your type. Eight INTs last season raised stock.
86. Troy OT-OG Antonio Garcia — Lean tackle whose bulk eliminates him from some systems. Very experienced and solid.
87. Alabama DT Dalvin Tomlinson — Rare intelligence and gap-clogging ability will appeal to many teams. Limited upside but useful, mature player.
88. Boston College DB John Johnson — Versatile safety (or perhaps corner) who could be a standout gunner on special teams Day 1.
89. Michigan TE Jake Butt — Has chance to be solid contributor in the Jack Doyle mold but injury history suddenly concerning.
90. Western Kentucky WR Taywan Taylor — This year’s Stefon Diggs? Great short-area quickness, yards-after-catch potential.
91. Western Michigan OG-OT Taylor Moton — Nice Senior Bowl week raised profile. Has power and seemed to fit better inside.
92. Clemson TE Jordan Leggett — Big, impressive frame with soft hands but needs to play with a little more grit.
93. Tennessee CB Cameron Sutton — Small-framed, quick-foot corner who might be destined for nickel duty. Strong work ethic, punt-return ability.
94. Florida State DE Demarcus Walker — We overrated him during the season because of production. Likely more of a 5-to-7 sack NFL player than a double-digit one.
95. Youngstown State DE Derek Rivers — Athletic, productive rusher who isn’t as consistent, snap to snap, as scouts would like. But fascinating potential.
96. Pitt QB Nathan Peterman — Pro-style, downfield touch passer who will force passes now and then. He has starter potential but limited upside.
97. Oklahoma WR Dede Westbrook — Electric playmaker, but seriously undersized. NFL teams more spooked on his character after deeper investigation.
98. Central Florida CB Shaquill Griffin— Impressive combine performance, good ball production has raised stock of this versatile, businesslike performer.
99. Tennessee QB Joshua Dobbs— Extremely smart, mature developmental project who has good athleticism and intangibles but needs work as a passer.
100. Florida Atlantic DE Trey Hendrickson — Short arms, but high-energy, do-it-all player cut from Rob Ninkovich cloth. Underrated athlete.
Just missed the cut: North Carolina-Charlotte DT Larry Ogunjobi, Florida State OT Roderick Johnson, Michigan WR Amara Darboh, South Florida RB Marlon Mack, Miami (Fla.) QB Brad Kaaya, Houston CB Howard Wilson, Florida LB Alex Anzalone, Illinois pass rusher Dawuane Smoot, Colorado CB Ahkello Witherspoon, Northwestern LB Anthony Walker, Clemson DT Carlos Watkins, Pitt OG Dorian Johnson, Wisconsin LB Vince Biegel, Ohio pass rusher Tarell Basham, Iowa DT Jaleel Johnson, LSU LB Kendell Beckwith, Washington DT Elijah Qualls
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