There are many draft analyst on multiple networks that have a wealth of knowledge, but my personal favorite is NFL Networks, Mike Mayock. Out of them all, I place Mayock’s word on a pedestal. His knowledge, enthusiasm and the monkey proof commentary, is what’s so endearing about him. I’ve learned quite a bit from Mayock. Watching his break down of players and schemes has actually helped me foster my ‘scouts eye’ and learn to synthesize what I’m seeing.
Yesterday, Mayock interacted with fans, and held a live chat at NFL.com. He bestowed his ‘word’ upon us all, and it set fire to Twitter. For a good four hours, everyone was quoting Mayock. Each quote beginning with, “Mike Mayock says […]”. Those tweets got me to thinking, I may not be the only one who holds Mayock’s word as gospel. So, I thought it would only be fitting to start a new feature titled, ‘Mike Mayock Says’. This feature will bring a few quotes from Mayock, about players and teams, in regards to the NFL Draft. So, without further adieu, Mike Mayock Says…
In regards to Nick Fairley vs. Marcel Dareus:
"Mike Mayock Says: Yhey are both great football players. The key in evaluating Fairley is whether or not you’re going to get the same player week in and week out. He has some work ethic issues, but is one of the most dominant defensive linemen I’ve seen on tape. Dareus is also a top-five pick, and as you said played through considerable injuries this year. Bottom line, Fairley may have a little bit more upside, but I think Dareus is the safer pick."
In regards to Danny Watkins, and other players with his upside:
"Mike Mayock Says: Watkins has considerable upside since he’s only played four years of football, but keep your eyes on another small-school prospect. William Rackley from Lehigh. He was a LT, but I believe he’ll kick inside to guard and ultimately has the ability to start there in the NFL."
In regards to Ryan Mallet’s abilities:
"Mike Mayock Says: Mallett has all the physical tools to be the prototype drop-back passer in the nfl. He may have the best arm in the draft and can make every throw. His problem is that the more the pocket disinegrates, the worse he becomes. His decision making and accuracy are tied to directly to a clean pocket and clear vision. I love his skill set, but he needs considerable development in the pocket."
In regards to Jacquizz Rodgers skills translating to the NFL:
"Mike Mayock Says: I love watching Rodgers on tape. He’s an explosive kid laterally, and much tougher than people think. His production was immense in the Pac 10, and I don’t think there’s any way he gets out of the second round despite his size. He’s a playmaker with the ability to take it to the house, but his body can withstand more snaps than people think."
In regards to Casey Matthews:
"Mike Mayock Says: I just had an opportunity to see Matthews all week at the Senior Bowl in additoin to his game tapes from Oregon. He’s not a physical specimen like his older brother. He doesn’t run as fast and doesn’t jump as high and isn’t as explosive. However, he’s a good football player, will get drafted in the middle rounds, will be a valuable special teams player and ultimately is a starting MLB in the NFL."
In regards to Da’Quan Bowers being a ‘One Hit Wonder’:
"Mike Mayock Says: I think Bowers is the classic boom or bust prospect this year. He only has one year of production, but the one year is so powerful it makes you believe that he has the ability to do it every year. That’s the delimma facing teams with top 10 picks. The one thing i like about Bowers is that I watched him against BC, a run-first, physical team, and he hung in there and played well. So he’ll test extremely well, has great tape from this season, but there’s always lingering doubt about the one-year wonders."
In regards to this years first round Quarterback class:
"Mike Mayock Says: My strong belief about this year’s QB class is that they’re the most difficult group to quantify in the last 10 years. Gabbert, Locker, Newton and Mallett all have first-round talent. But they all have holes either in their on-field game, or concerns off the field. Over the next two months, I will be spending considerable time, along with the 32 NFL teams, trying to figure these kids out. In today’s NFL, you have to have a franchise QB if you want to win a Super Bowl. All four of these kids have the ability, but the question is which one, two or three will ultimately get it done?"
In regards to this years Running Back class:
"Mike Mayock Says: Kind of an intriguing RB class this year. Most poeple think Mark Ingram will get drafted somewhere between 15-25. After that, it really depends what your flavor is. Mikel LeShoure from Illinois is a big back with grat feet. Daniel Thomas from KSU is another big back with good feet and tremendous receiving skills out of the backfield. Ryan Williams has home run ability in a great body. Then you start to get into the third-down, change-of-pace backs who are smaller, make-you-miss guys. I believe that Jacquizz Rodgers is a difference-maker, and I really like Kendall Hunter from Oklahoma St. As the draft progresses, you’ll see teams take back in the mid to late rounds who fit what they do. For instance, D. Carter from Syracuse is a 225-pound back with good feet, is a downhill runner and probably will get drafted in the fourth round by a zone team that needs a one-cut guy."
For the entire live chat, head over to NFL.com