Steve Seufert | May 5th, 2020
30% of the NFL is made up of undrafted free agents. The journey is just getting started for these guys. At this point, the mindset has to be that it doesn’t matter where you were drafted. You made it past the tough part, the part where you need to be given the opportunity. Now it’s time to showcase the skills that got you here.
Buffalo Bills: Trey Adams, OT, Washington
Adams was thought of as a first-round talent after the 2017 season. He has since suffered multiple injuries, including a right ACL tear that obviously required surgery. Upon returning, he didn’t look nearly as athletic on tape. Medical red flags caused him to slip but I think there is some upside left in Adams’ game. He plays with good balance and he’s good when asked to block in space. With a healthy full off-season, Adams could return to 2017 shape.
Miami Dolphins: Benito Jones, DT, Ole Miss
The Dolphins found a gap shooting defensive tackle that’ll win with quickness and lateral agility. He also has some serious pop in his hands and he’s built like a brick house despite his short stature. Jones doesn’t have the length for two-gapping and he’s scheme dependent.
New England Patriots: De’Jon Harris, LB, Arkansas
Three straight 100 tackle seasons in the SEC, that is one heck of a feature to have on your resume. Harris’s play speed is much faster than his athletic profile indicates. He plays like a film junkie, quickly reading his keys and diagnosing run plays. I love his physicality and the way he plays through the offensive lineman. He slipped in the draft due to his athletic profile but the Patriots clearly see the production.
GABE RICHARDSON with the FF, SCOOTA HARRIS with the scoop and score. 14-10 A&M leads Arkansas pic.twitter.com/6NaHJujJVt
— Nikki Chavanelle (@NikkiChavanelle) September 28, 2019
New York Jets: Bryce Huff, EDGE, Memphis
16 sacks over his final two seasons, showing consistent improvement from when he first stepped on campus. Huff profiles nicely as a rotational 3-4 outside linebacker. He’s an extremely explosive player with a wicked first step. Huff is a fluid athlete with adequate bend and ankle flexion to win around the edge. I think with improved strength and hand technique he could produce on an NFL roster.
Bryce Huff (@Bryce55H) with the “touch & go”. Shoots his hands at the blocker, then takes them away quickly to off-balance him. Uses the rip to corner & sack the QB! #passrush #nfldraft pic.twitter.com/VaShqPGTeI
— DLineVids (@dlinevids1) April 24, 2020
Baltimore Ravens: Tyler Huntley, QB, Utah
Elite athletic profile for a quarterback and it pops on tape. Ran a 4.56 40-yard dash, jumped 43.5 inches, and sported a 6.84-second three-cone. He plays even faster than the timed speed but the explosion and agility match the timed speed. I think Huntley is so tough and good with the ball in his hands that being a kick returner or punt returner isn’t out of the question. I don’t want to make the Taysom Hill comparison, but I can’t help but think that Huntley could do all of what Hill does and project even better as a passer. He’s certainly a better passer than McSorley and I think he can do anything that Robert Griffin III can do. Huntley should make this roster, there’s not a better fit.
— Russell Brown (@RussNFLDraft) December 7, 2019
Cincinnati Bengals: Marcel Spears Jr., LB, Iowa State
I don’t feel like I get to say this enough about college linebackers but Spears is very instinctive in coverage. In zone, he’s excellent at recognizing and getting to his landmark. He profiles as a coverage first WILL linebacker and could stick on a team that has desperately needed help at that position.
Cleveland Browns: A.J. Green, CB, Oklahoma State
There’s not a long list of successful cornerbacks with 4.62 40-yard dash times. With that being said, Green has something in common with a lot of the 4.6 cornerbacks that have had success. He plays with great instinct in off zone-coverage and his ball skills are unquestionably good. Joe Woods, the Cleveland Browns defensive coordinator use to run a ton of cover one and man principles. That could make it difficult for Green but there’s reason to think Woods will run more zone concepts in Cleveland after spending time with Robert Saleh in San Francisco.
Pittsburgh Steelers: Trajan Bandy, CB, Miami
The former Miami Hurricane is a pure nickel cornerback with solid athletic ability. His short-area quickness and recovery speed are very good. Change of direction and his click and close ability is near elite. The ball skills are horrendous and it’ll show up in the box score. He’s just a high caliber athlete playing football, if he can convert some of that athleticism and energy into football ability, he will stick on an NFL roster.
Houston Texans: Scottie Phillips, RB, Ole Miss
Phillips is a local kid and junior college product. His football athleticism and football speed both play much faster than his timed speed. His agility and elusiveness don’t match up with his athletic testing numbers. I think he will make a nice third-down back at the NFL level. Although he didn’t get a ton of targets at Ole Miss, he looked good in receiving situations. His willingness to pass protect will also stand out, especially in training camp when he will be competing for a roster spot.
— Ben Garrett (@SpiritBen) September 1, 2018
Indianapolis Colts: Rodrigo Blankenship, K, Georgia
Blankenship made 93% of his kicks at the collegiate level. With Adam Vinatieri aging and unsure if he is coming back, Blankenship has a real shot of being a starting kicker. The dome in Indianapolis is a kicker paradise.
Just give Rodrigo Blankenship the Heisman now. pic.twitter.com/PSVwHhATSe
— Connor O’Gara (@cjogara) September 29, 2018
Jacksonville Jaguars: Luqman Barcoo, DB, San Diego State
Only one-year of production but would’ve tested well if he had the opportunity to test. Barcoo is strictly an off-zone cornerback at the next level and shouldn’t be used in press due to his play strength. Run support isn’t good enough to play safety, but as he matures and adds mass, it could be something to consider in the future.
Unofficial #Jaguars signing, CB Luq Barcoo.
This is just fantastic here: pic.twitter.com/qSPaGesZwC
— Demetrius Harvey (@Demetrius82) April 26, 2020
Tennessee Titans: Kyle Williams, WR, Arizona State
4.43 40-yard dash speed and might even play faster than that. Williams is only 5’10 and has marginal arm length making his catch radius poor. His short arms and size prevent him from defeating true press-coverage. He could make the team as a z-receiver, keeping him off the line of scrimmage, giving him a free release to attack vertically.
Denver Broncos: LeVante Bellamy, RB, Western Michigan
Denver might have one of the deepest running back groups in the NFL, so Bellamy has his work cut out for him. Really good vision from shotgun and he’s extremely decisive. Shorter frame with a lower center of gravity, allowing him to bounce off defenders. Really good athletic profile that could make him appealing to stash on special teams.
Months later and we’re still asking ourselves ⬇️
— WMU Football (@WMU_Football) April 22, 2020
Las Vegas Raiders: Madre Harper, CB, Southern Illinois
Incredible testing numbers and overall length scream potential. He plays with pure athleticism and instinct with little technique. At the very least, Harper is a practice squad candidate the oozes potential.
Los Angeles Chargers: Joe Gaziano, DL, Northwestern
Gaziano had really good production while playing in the Big Ten. Probably a strong side defensive end in a 4-3 base. I like his mental processing the most. Extremely quick to key and diagnose, and rushes with a plan in the pass game. Smart player that uses his strength and leverage to win in the run game. He also displays violent hands at the point of attack. The production at a Big Ten school makes him worth a look.
— Northwestern Football (@NUFBFamily) September 10, 2018
Kansas City Chiefs: Kalija Lipscomb, WR, Vanderbilt
You’re getting a versatile receiver that can play multiple positions at a high level. He’s an extremely smooth and efficient router runner with little wasted movement. His short-area quickness is solid and his effort after the catch is positive. Lipscomb’s play strength is poor and will need to improve at the next level. I like the versatility and it might help him stick on an NFL roster.
Kalija Lipscomb burns bast Dane Jackson for long bomb pic.twitter.com/UAhJUP353Z
— Luke Inman (@Luke_SpinmanNFL) January 22, 2020
Dallas Cowboys: Sewo Olonilua, RB/FB, TCU
Unfortunately, as a Redskins fan, this is one of my favorite signings. Olonilua tested in the 71.5 percentile at 6’3 and 232 pounds. That’s impressive but his play speed is much faster than his 4.66 40-yard dash. Really good short-area quickness and lateral quickness, pretty much elite for his size. His production has been proven in short-yardage situations. It sounds like he’s getting a shot at fullback which will only improve his chances of making the team. Olonilua can also cover on special teams and return kicks, as he did both at Texas Christian University.
Sewo Olonilua is a fascinating RB. Moves extremely well for 6’3″, 232, but he still plays to his size. This is great leg churn by him. Those feet never stop moving.pic.twitter.com/x7n1AMTqTy
— Nick Farabaugh (@FarabaughFB) April 6, 2020
New York Giants: Javon Leake, RB, Maryland
Leake fell out of the draft due to his poor athletic profile. I was absolutely shocked to see him test poorly. His burst and long speed are both very good on tape. I love how patient Leake is during outside zone runs. He shows good patience and vision in the open field. He is a very good kick returning specialist. Leake just seems like a guy that’ll stick because he’s a playmaker.
Javon Leake to the house!! Not a bad way to start the second half pic.twitter.com/EMaRz1ENyP
— Terps Watch (@TerpsWatch) October 5, 2019
Philadelphia Eagles: Grayland Arnold, DB, Baylor
Not much to like about the Eagles undrafted free agent class, in my opinion. Arnold is a slow and undersized cornerback which caused him to fall out of the draft. I think you should get excited about his effort and ball skills. His ball skills translate to special teams where Arnold has provided value as a punt returner.
Washington Redskins: Isaiah Wright, WR/RB, Temple
One of my favorite undrafted free agents that can wear many different caps. He was used like his rookie teammate Antonio Gibson at Temple. The major difference between the two is that Gibson is the far superior ball carrier and Wright is the better natural receiver. I think Wright can be Gibson insurance, and bring another dimension as a big slot receiver. Wright has no issues vs press-coverage, another reason he can stick as a receiver. Washington might have the two best kick returning rookies on their team.
One of our favorite under-radar prospects at wideout is @Temple_FB WR Isaiah Wright. Explosive guy with the ball in his hands. Legit returner that’s hard to tackle. 2018 AAC ST Player of Year. Temple Tuff dude will be playing on Sundays next fall. #TheDraftStartsInMOBILE pic.twitter.com/v8sRvpnA8R
— Jim Nagy (@JimNagy_SB) October 4, 2019
Chicago Bears: Ahmad Wagner, WR, Kentucky
He transitioned back to football in 2018 after spending three years playing basketball at The University of Iowa. Unfortunately, the Wildcats had poor quarterback play and even ended up turning to Lynn Bowden Jr.to finish out the season. That means there isn’t a ton of tape with Wagner running routes and making plays. He spent a lot of time blocking, and he’s a good one, I might add. The athletic ability is there and he’s shown the ability to grab the football like it’s a rebound. The upside of Wagner is something you should get excited about.
Detroit Lions: Hunter Bryant, TE, Washington
A lot of fans were shocked that Bryant went undrafted. The medical issues, size, and athletic profile caused Bryant to take arguably the biggest fall in this year’s draft class. Personally, I like him. I see some Jordan Reed in his game and he may have to be used in a similar role. There’s definitely room to grow as an inline player but his play strength and size may lower the ceiling. I think he will be a great replacement for Logan Thomas.
— Lawrence Chaney (@pacificscouting) May 24, 2019
Green Bay Packers: Tipa Galeai, EDGE, Utah State
Galeai was kicked off the team at TCU in 2017 and left the school for Utah State. Galeai is a juiced-up pass rusher with a wicked first step. He caught my eye early in the process because the first step was the best I’ve seen in the 2020 class. He’s more of a situational pass rusher until he fills out his long frame. Play strength is only adequate and he will get washed out in the run game.
2018: 10.5 Sacks • 14 TFL • 3 FF • 2 INT pic.twitter.com/NwMxDmocAh
— DLineVids (@dlinevids1) July 7, 2019
Minnesota Vikings: Quartney Davis, WR, Texas A&M
Hands down the biggest winner of the undrafted free agency class. I thought Davis was a top ten receiver in this class. His play speed is faster than his timed speed, although his timed speed isn’t bad. He has some of the better releases in the class and the releases are up there with Jerry Jeudy and CeeDee Lamb. He’s a good receiver in the slot and on the boundary, providing roster flexibility and versatility. Davis shows advanced route-running skills and nuance when he’s at the top of his routes. His run after catch ability isn’t something to brag about but it’s certainly not poor. I can’t believe he went undrafted.
Starts off with a good release, finishes it with a great route. Fantastic rep by Quartney Davis. pic.twitter.com/TToHBapm3G
— Steven Michael (@DFF_Steven) January 23, 2020
Atlanta Falcons: Jared Pinkney, TE, Vanderbilt
Enjoy watching a player with that large of a catch radius. Pinkney plucks the ball from all different angles showing really good manual dexterity. He’s large in stature and has pretty good contact balance, making it difficult to bring him down. He’s a solid blocker with room to grow in that area. Pinkney isn’t elite in any area and lacks upside. I think he can move around the formation, block, and remain a reliable target underneath. He should make a roster, even if it’s not in Atlanta.
Good morning, Jared Pinkney. pic.twitter.com/BmLMhKE6z1
— Benjamin Solak (@BenjaminSolak) June 17, 2019
Carolina Panthers: Rodney Smith, RB, Minnesota
Carolina is getting a one-cut downhill running back. Smith doesn’t have any stand out traits. He’s decisive when he’s attacking downhill and he has solid contact balance thanks to his lower center of gravity. Smith is on the fast track as a pass protector providing some reliability and consistency in his game.
ROW. THE. BOAT! Rodney Smith takes back the opening kick for a TD!
— FOX Sports North (@fsnorth) November 11, 2017
New Orleans Saints: Calvin Throckmorton, OL, Oregon
Throckmorton started all four years at Oregon. His foot quickness and lack of length prevent him from getting a shot as an NFL offensive tackle. I love how his football IQ shows up on tape. He plays with awareness and urgency, allowing him to make up for any athletic or size deficiencies. Moving forward, I think you see Throckmorton get a shot at left guard or center. The versatility will allow him to stick around in the NFL.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Michael Divinity Jr., LB, LSU
Divinity failed a handful of drug tests at LSU causing him to fall out of the draft. He has experience as an inside linebacker and as an edge rusher. The long arms are appealing if he can tap into how to use them. The production was there at LSU and production translates, especially as a pass rusher. Divinity is probably a practice squad player to mold into a rotational pass rusher. The positional versatility is something to be excited about.
Arizona Cardinals: Shane Leatherbury, WR, Towson
Leatherbury caught 12 touchdown passes from Tom Flacco, the younger brother of Joe Flacco. He tallied 19 receiving touchdowns in two seasons at Towson. Leatherbury has really good short-area quickness allowing him to separate from defenders. He plays with a very good understanding of zone, consistently finding a soft spot to sit. If he doesn’t make it in Arizona, he will have a shot elsewhere.
— Towson Football (@Towson_FB) April 26, 2020
Los Angeles Rams: Bryce Perkins, QB, Virginia
67 touchdowns and nearly 8,000 total yards at Virginia. Perkins is clearly an inaccurate quarterback but a very good ball carrier. I think his pure running ability is equal to, if not better than, Jalen Hurts. The Rams are a good place to be if you’re a quarterback looking for a shot. Jared Goff is under a ton of scrutiny and they don’t currently have a backup with experience.
Bryce Perkins is different
Two hurdles from the QB
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) September 22, 2018
San Francisco 49ers: Jared Mayden, S, Alabama
He played multiple positions at Alabama and handled them well. He’s aggressive at the point of attack and at the catch point. Mayden’s almost too aggressive, finishing with violent tackling technique. I like his ball skills and the way he attacks the football. He’s raw in coverage but he’s decent in off-coverage, giving him time to diagnose the play. His aggressive style can hurt him in coverage, as he often bites on false keys. There’s definitely a team that could use Mayden on special teams. His experience at both safety positions could provide value.
Seattle Seahawks: Anthony Gordon, QB, Washington State
48 touchdowns in 2019 with nine games of 400 plus yards, lighting it up for Mike Leach and his Air-Raid offense. His arm will play at the NFL level, meaning it’s good enough. Gardner Minshew had immediate NFL success coming out of the same college system. Seattle doesn’t currently have a standout backup, leaving Gordon with a shot to make the roster.
Anthony Gordon might play at his own tempo but he produced some of the most absurd throws from last season. His dropbacks and pocket movement are little ~unsual~ but his actual throwing mechanics are top in the class. Loves to find the half spaces between zone defenders: pic.twitter.com/mwoBCuJ3cl
— Seth Galina (@pff_seth) April 16, 2020
Questions and comments?
Hit us up on the Socials:
Check out our Facebook Group where you can read and post articles at The Scorecrow
Reddit Group where everyone can post without fear of being banned at The Scorecrow
Main Image Credit: Embed from Getty Images