2016 NFL Draft: Big Board Worthy Prospects

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I’m still very early in the scouting process for the 2016 draft which makes it tough to develop a lengthy Big Board. This article is a list of players that I scouted who have the talent to be considered a top-32 pick. Every week I’ll update this list until I’m able to put together a solid Big Board.

The prospects listed are ranked with the highest rated player at the top.

  1. Jaylon Smith, LB- Notre Dame
  • Jaylon Smith is a rare prospect in that he legitimately excels in all areas of the game. He’s an instinctive player who has the burst to make plays from sideline to sideline. His ability to quickly close on the ball carrier allows him to register a large amount of tackles for loss. However, it’s his exceptional coverage skills that separates him from the other prospects in this draft.
  1. Joey Bosa, DL- Ohio State
  • Joey Bosa is a disruptive force making life tough for opposing offenses. He uses his length, quick burst and lateral quickness to consistently make plays behind the line of scrimmage. His skill set gives him the versatility to fit as either a traditional defensive end in a 4-3 alignment or as a five-technique in a 3-4.
  1. A’Shawn Robinson, DL- Alabama
  • A’Shawn Robinson is a power player who excels at stuffing the run. He uses his size, arm length and balance to win at the point of attack. Robinson does a great job keeping blockers off his frame which allows him to cleanly work his way to the football. He doesn’t offer much as a pass rusher but can be truly dominant against the run.

More from With the First Pick

  1. Laremy Tunsil, OT- Ole Miss
  • Tunsil is dealing with some legal troubles at the moment but that doesn’t erase the fact that he’s an elite offensive tackle prospect. It’s his athleticism and fluid movement skills that makes him so special. He’s able to mirror the pass rush, change direction and protect the edge. Tunsil needs to add some strength and power to his run blocking but that’s something that will improve with better weight training.
  1. Ronnie Stanley, OT- Notre Dame
  • Stanley had a good shot to come off the board in the first round of the 2015 draft had he entered. Now he’s looking to solidify by building on last year. Stanley features the size, length and athleticism needed to play left tackle in the NFL. He shows a strong understanding of how to use angles to protect the edge. Stanley needs to improve as a run blocker to really establish himself as a top-10 pick.
  1. Shawn Oakman, DL- Baylor
  • Shawn Oakman has an elite combination of size, length and quickness that make him a major pass rushing threat. He made a good decision by returning to school as improved consistency will help his stock.
  1. Robert Nkemdiche, DL- Ole Miss
  • Nkemdiche is a unique player based on where he lines up for Ole Miss. He typically plays along the interior of the defensive line where he’s able to use his burst off the line to create matchup problems. Nkemdiche is truly a disruptive player who makes plays behind the line of scrimmage on a consistent basis. However, he needs to show that he can hold up better against the run if he hopes to stick at defensive tackle in the NFL.
  1. Miles Jack, LB- UCLA
  • I put together an article a few weeks ago breaking down Myles Jack and the question marks that surround his overall draft stock. However, this is an explosive athlete who plays with a great feel for the game and a non-stop motor. He’s the type of player capable of overcoming the concerns surrounding his lack of size.
  1. Connor Cook, QB- Michigan State
  • Connor Cook is coming off a breakout season and is poised to make another strong impression on NFL evaluators. He’s a strong-armed quarterback who shows solid accuracy to all levels of the field. Cook is a terrific athlete, hard worker and has shown good leadership ability. He has a chance to be the first quarterback off the board.