Top Ten Small School NFL Offensive Draft Prospects in 2016
A Look at the Top Small School Offensive Players Who Could Enter the NFL This Year
2016 NFL Offseason
Up and at ‘em, folks. We’re almost to the weekend. Granted there’s no football to look forward to, but it’s just about tournament time and that counts for something. As promised, this morning’s top ten will focus on the best small school offensive players who could go into the NFL next year. If you missed yesterday’s post about the defensive guys, here you go. You’re welcome.
USA TODAY Sports
1. North Dakota State QB Carson Wentz
Wentz, a 6’6, 235 pound player, is entering the draft in a very light year for quarterbacks. This could work to his advantage. Wentz is likely to become the first non-FBS quarterback drafted in the first round since 2008. Wentz has no off-field concerns (are you listening, Cleveland?) and shows flashes of NFL-level talent on a regular basis. With the right coaching, he could become a reliable starter in the pros.
2. Bowling Green RB Travis Green
Hailing from the same conference that produced Thomas Rawls, Green is a 5’10, 192 pound force to be reckoned with. Green has shown an impressive ability to find holes where there really aren’t holes and has enough power behind him to break tackles to pick-up extra yardage on a consistent basis.
3. Arkansas State TE Darion Griswold
At 6’5, 265 pounds, Griswold is certainly built like an NFL tight end. One of Griswold’s strengths is his blocking ability, so I look for him to see more playing time than the average NFL rookie at his position, especially if he finds himself in a favorable situation from a coaching standpoint.
4. North Dakota State OT Joe Haeg
Clocking-in at 6’6 and 293 pounds, Haeg is a formidable left tackle who played on the 2015 FCS National Championship team. Haeg has quick footwork on the field and remains composed even in tough situations. His can-do attitude, combined with his proven abilities, should appeal to NFL scouts.
5. East Carolina TE Bryce Williams
Williams, who stands 6’6 and 258 pounds, has been a reliable pass-catcher for the Pirates throughout his college career. He’s also a solid blocker at the line of scrimmage. For teams that are deeply concerned with the character of their players, Williams hits a home-run. He’s personable, football-smart, and has no off-field issues to contend with.
6. Harvard OT Cole Toner
Toner, a 6’5, 305 pound right tackle, has looked good for Harvard over the course of his college career. He certainly possesses the strength and size to become an NFL starter. Furthermore, Toner has a high school basketball background, which gives him better hands than many linemen possess. Toner was a 2015 All-American and a participant in last year’s Reese’s Senior Bowl.
7. Chattanooga QB Jacob Huesman
Huesman, who clocks-in at 6’1 and 229 pounds, doesn’t have the size of most of today’s NFL quarterbacks (not everyone can be Russell Wilson, people), but he had an impressive college career, playing in a school-record 50 games for his team. Huesman also won Southern Conference Offensive Player of the Year honors three times. The most probably situation for Huesman is that he’ll be signed as an undrafted free agent and earn a chance to prove himself as a back-up in training camp come summertime.
8. East Texas Baptist RB Kendall Robinson
5’10, 200 pound Robinson had a breakout game in 2015 against Bellhaven. In just three quarters of that contest, he rushed 33 times for 420 yards and five touchdowns. That’s impressive by any standard. Robinson isn’t likely to be a starter in the NFL, especially during his rookie season, but he’s a solid back-up option.
9. Concord RB Calvinaugh Jones
Jones, a 5’9, 195 pound player, started all four years he was on the Mountain Lions’ roster. Over the course of his college career, Jones had 4,638 rushing yards and 38 touchdowns. Jones is excellent at driving through traffic, which is a trait that NFL scouts find particularly appealing. Like Robinson, Jones is unlikely to be a first-year starter in the pros, but he certainly has potential.
10. Pittsburg State WR Marquise Cushon
At 5’9 and 165 pounds, Cushon is slightly undersized to play in the NFL. He also had an unfortunate senior season after racking-up 1,301 yards and eight touchdowns during his junior year. Nonetheless, Cushon could become a decent slot receiver in the right pro system.