NFL DRAFT 2014–DAY 3: Top talent still available in rounds 4 through 7

nfl draft 2014 - radio city music hall - the boys are back blog

The first 100 picks of the 2014 NFL Draft are in the books, but the talent well is far from dry in this deep class.

The bulk of NFL rosters are built in the final four rounds of the draft, where teams can find future starters or fill spots on special teams. Many picks won’t pan out, but the NFL is filled with third-day success stories, just ask Tom Brady, Jared Allen and the countless number of other examples.

Here is a look at the Top-10 players still available entering the fourth round today:

1. QB Tom Savage, Pittsburgh: Over the past few months, no player had more of a perceived jump up draft boards than Savage, who went from draft afterthought to potential crasher in the back-half of Round 1. But while he has the prototypical size and arm strength, his raw qualities from the neck up are why he’s still available.

Hot 100 rank: #42 | Savage (6-foot-3 7/8, 228 pounds) is a good leader and throws a lot like Troy Aikman. He has a very strong arm and will put it where the receiver can catch it. If he had played four years at one school, he might have been projected in top half of first round.

2. OLB Carl Bradford, Arizona State: A relentless, energetic front-seven defender, Bradford was an All-Pac 12 performer the past two seasons, combining for almost 40 tackles for loss. His most glaring weakness is his lack of a natural position, but it’s easy for coaches to fall in love with the way he plays the game.

Hot 100 rank: #60 | Bradford (6-foot-1 1/8, 251 pounds) had 27 sacks in three years. He can play in space or rush the passer and play the run. His best position is strong-side linebacker. He ran a 4.72-second 40 at his pro day.

3. DT DaQuan Jones, Penn State: A quick, strong upfield penetrator, Jones has some medical dings on his resume, which are a big reason he’s still on the board after three rounds. He needs some technique work, but has the well-rounded skill-set and likeable traits to fit both three- or four-man fronts. 6-foot-3 3/4, 322 pounds, 5.28 40

4. OT Antonio Richardson, Tennessee: Widely believed to be the top offensive lineman from Tennessee last season, Richardson watched his teammate Ja’Wuan James go in the top 20, while he fell out of the top 100. Richardson has more talent, but knee and hip concerns have hurt his value and the long-term durability is a question mark.

5. WR Bruce Ellington, South Carolina: A high school quarterback who went to South Carolina to play basketball, Ellington plays with burst and acceleration to create with the ball in his hands. He still has quite a bit of growing to do on the field with his route-running and reliability in traffic, but has the athletic traits the NFL wants.

6. CB Keith McGill, Utah: An older prospect at 25 years old, McGill fits the mold of the bigger cornerback that is en vogue currently in the NFL at 6-feet-3 and 33-inch arms. And while he looks the part with enough speed and flexibility to cover, he needs to continue to develop his skills in both man and zone coverage.

Hot 100 rank: #58 | In addition to his height, McGill has long arms (33 inches) and big hands (10 inches). He had 37 tackles and 12 pass breakups in 2013 and played well at the Senior Bowl. One question for him is why he didn’t have more interceptions at Utah (one in two seasons).

7. OT Cameron Fleming, Stanford: After earning the starting right tackle job as a redshirt freshman, Fleming started there all but two games the past three seasons. He has the natural base and massive frame you want, but isn’t as physically mauling as he looks, falling off blocks and struggling to sustain.

Hot 100 rank: #49 | Fleming (6-foot-4 7/8, 323 pounds) is a right tackle and a very good run blocker. He left school one year early, but started for three years. Will play this position for a lot of years. He needs to improve as a pass blocker, and I believe he will.

8. WR Martavis Bryant, Clemson: After just 19 catches over his first two seasons, Bryant emerged as a reliable option opposite Sammy Watkins in 2013 with 42 catches for 828 yards and seven scores. He has the size/speed combination that will intrigue, but is still raw with his ball skills and route-running. 6-foot-4, 217 pounds, 4.34 40

9. CB Jaylen Watkins, Florida: The older brother of Sammy Watkins, the Florida corner has experience at cornerback (inside and outside) and at safety, lining up all over the Gators’ secondary. He has light, controlled feet and does an excellent job in his backpedal to flip his hips and stay in the wide receiver’s pocket.

10. OLB Telvin Smith, Florida State: Although he looks more like a safety when you see him on the sidelines (6-3, 218), Smith plays like a linebacker with the speedy range to cover both sidelines. Smith’s lack of bulk and growth potential are tough to overlook, but he’s competitive and the motor doesn’t shut off.

QUARTERBACK

1. Tom Savage, Pittsburgh (6-4, 228)

2. A.J. McCarron, Alabama (6-3, 220)

Hot 100 rank: #54 | McCarron (6-foot-3 1/4, 220 pounds) led Alabama to two national championships and completed 67 percent of his passes over two years (2012-13) with 58 TDs and 10 interceptions. He’s a very smart player with slightly above-average arm strength and ran a hand-timed 4.91-second 40.

3. Zach Mettenberger, LSU (6-5, 224)

4. Aaron Murray, Georgia (6-1, 207)

5. Logan Thomas, Virginia Tech (6-6, 248)

RUNNING BACK

1. Andre Williams, Boston College (5-11, 230, 4.54 40)

2. Devonta Freeman, Florida State (5-8, 206,4.50 40)

3. Ka’Deem Carey, Arizona (5-9, 207, 4.72 40)

4. Lache Seastrunk, Baylor (5-10, 201, 4.37 40)

5. James White, Wisconsin (5-9, 204)

WIDE RECEIVER

1. Bruce Ellington, South Carolina (5-9, 197, 4.31 40)

2. Martavis Bryant, Clemson (6-4, 217, 4.34 40)

3. Kevin Norwood, Alabama (6-2, 198)

4. Jared Abbrederis, Wisconsin (6-1, 195, 4.44 40)

5. Shaq Evans, UCLA (6-1, 213)

TIGHT END

1. Arthur Lynch, Georgia (6-5, 258)

2. Larry Webster, Bloomsburg (6-6, 252)

3. Rob Blanchflower, Massachusetts (6-4, 256)

4. Jake Murphy, Utah (6-4, 249)

5. Blake Annen, Cincinnati (6-4, 247)

OFFENSIVE TACKLE

1. Antonio Richardson, Tennessee (6-6, 336, 5.34 40)

2. Cameron Fleming, Stanford (6-5, 323)

3. Laurent Duvernay-Tardif, McGill (6-5, 298, 5.05 40)

4. Seantrel Henderson, Miami (6-7, 331)

5. Matt Patchan, Boston College (6-6, 302)

OFFENSIVE GUARD

1. Dakota Dozier, Furman (6-4, 313)

2. Cyril Richardson, Baylor (6-5, 329)

Hot 100 rank: #61 | Richardson has 34 3/8-inch arms and put up 30 bench-press reps at his pro day. He didn’t play as well in 2013 as he did the previous season and might have been too heavy at around 345 pounds. A four-year starter, he’s a good run blocker and pass protector.

3. David Yankey, Stanford (6-6, 315, 5.50 40)

4. Charles Leno, Boise State (6-4, 303)

5. Russell Bodine, North Carolina (6-3, 310)

CENTER

1. Gabe Ikard, Oklahoma (6-4, 304)

2. Wesley Johnson, Vanderbilt (6-5, 297)

3. Corey Linsley, Ohio State (6-3, 296)

4. Bryan Stork, Florida State (6-4, 315)

5. Tyler Larsen, Utah State (6-4, 313)

DEFENSIVE END

1. Jackson Jeffcoat, Texas (6-3, 247, 4.60 40)

2. Taylor Hart, Oregon (6-6, 281)

3. James Gayle, Virginia Tech (6-4, 259)

4. Ethan Westbrooks, West Texas A&M (6-4, 267)

5. Ed Stinson, Alabama (6-3, 287)

DEFENSIVE TACKLE

1. Da’Quan Jones, Penn State (6-4, 322, 5.28 40)

2. Caraun Reid, Princeton (6-2, 302, 4.85 40)

3. Justin Ellis, Louisiana Tech (6-2, 334, 5.12 40)

4. Kelcy Quarles, South Carolina (6-4, 297)

5. Daniel McCullers, Tennessee (6-7, 252, 5.30 40)

OUTSIDE LINEBACKER

1. Carl Bradford, Arizona State (6-1, 250, 4.72 40)

2. Telvin Smith, Florida State (6-4, 218, 4.41 40)

3. Chris Smith, Arkansas (6-1, 266, DE/LB, 4.60 40

4. Christian Jones, Florida State (6-3, 240, 4.60 40)

5. Jordan Tripp, Montana (6-3, 234, 4.58 40)

INSIDE LINEBACKER

1. Shayne Skov, Stanford (6-2, 245)

2. Brock Coyle, Montana (6-1, 235)

3. Lamin Barrow, LSU (6-1, 237)

4. Max Bullough, Michigan State (6-4, 249)

5. Avery Williamson, Kentucky (6-1, 246)

CORNERBACK

1. Keith McGill, Utah (6-3, 211)

2. Jaylen Watkins, Florida (6-0, 194)

3. Pierre Desir, Lindenwood (6-1, 198)

4. Marcus Roberson, Florida (6-0, 191, 4.59 40)

5. Walt Aikens, Liberty (6-1, 203, 4.49 40)

FREE SAFETY

1. Marqueston Huff, Wyoming (5-11, 196, 4.47 40)

2. Dion Bailey, USC (6-0, 201, 4.68 40)

3. Ed Reynolds, Stanford (6-1, 207, 4.51 40)

4. Kenny Ladler, Vanderbilt (6-0, 207)

5. Jonathan Dowling, Western Kentucky (6-3, 190)

STRONG SAFETY

1. Brock Vereen, Minnesota (6-0, 199, 4.42 40)

2. Craig Loston, LSU (6-1, 217)

3. Vinnie Sunseri, Alabama (5-11, 210)

4. Ahmad Dixon, Baylor (6-0, 212)

5. Tre Boston, North Carolina (6-0, 204)

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