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Browns stay at #1; 49ers to #2 … There was a lot to cheer about in Cleveland this weekend where the Indians will try and win their first World Series since 1948. Unfortunately, the Browns weren’t part of the celebration as they lost 31-17 across the state in Cincinnati to drop to 0-7. That leaves the Browns as the league’s only remaining winless team and needless to say still sitting on the first pick overall at the 2017 draft. The rest of the early selection order, though, will undergo a significant reshuffling this week after the New York Jets, who were sitting on the #2 pick heading into the week, upset Baltimore 24-16 and will drop down to the 5th pick. Meanwhile, San Francisco which got blasted 34-17 at home to Tampa Bay, moves up t to the #2 pick this week, while Chicago will be slotted 3rd and Carolina 4th. As usual, the full updated weekly selection order will be posted after the Monday night game tomorrow.
Tide wins; lose star SS … Alabama stayed unbeaten and on track to a second straight BCS championship with a hard-fought 33-14 win over Texas A&M earlier this afternoon, but it came with a cost as SS Eddie Jackson, a second-day prospect for the 2017 draft, fractured a leg and will miss the rest of the season.
Terps’ CB done for year … Maryland has confirmed that veteran CB Will Likely, one of the more underrated players at the position for the 2017 draft, will miss the rest of the year after tearing an ACL in the team’s game with Minnesota last week. At just 5-7, 175, Likely wasn’t the biggest guy out there, but he was already a two-time All-Big Ten nominee who was a legit collegiate lock down corner who was also very aggressive defending the run. Likely was also one of the more explosive kick returners in the country who also played some snaps on offense for the Terps. The injury comes at a tough time for Likely as it is unlikely he will be 100% before the draft which gets underway in just over 6 months.
#1 vs #1 hilites weekend college football sked … NFL scouts have had Saturday’s game between #1 Alabama and #6 Texas A&M circled since the schedule came out with the potential of having the consensus top prospect overall for the 2017 draft in Texas A&M junior DE Myles Garrett going up against the consensus #1 OT in this year’s draft class in Alabama junior LT Cam Robinson. And while the Garrett-Robinson confrontation will indeed be one of the keys in this contest, this game has turned into one of the big games of the year – period – in college football as the Aggies have morphed into the biggest threat on the Alabama schedule. And even without Garrett and Robinson there will be plenty of top prospects for the upcoming draft on the field in Tuscaloosa on Saturday.
#1 vs #1 hilites weekend college football sked … NFL scouts have had Saturday’s Texas A&M-Alabama game circled since the schedule came out with the possibility of having the consensus top prospect overall for the 2017 draft – Aggies’ junior DE Myles Garrett – going up against the consensus #1 OT in this year’s draft class: Tide junior LT Cam Robinson. Just by itself that would make the Aggies-Tide must-see TV, but this has evolved into one of the games of the year as #1 ranked Alabama tries to hold off unbeaten #6 Texas A&M which just might be the defending national champs toughest test on their schedule. And even without Garrett and Robinson, there would be a ton of intriguing NFL prospects to watch in this game. Here’s a quick preview of who to watch in Saturday’s big game with an eye toward the 2017 draft.
Pigskin’s weekly prospects review … A little later than usual, GBN Associate Editor Pigskin Paul Guillemette weighs in on which prospects caught his eye in last week’s key college football action.
Heels’ LB done for year … North Carolina OG Caleb Peterson, a second-tier type prospect for the 2017 draft, will reportedly miss the rest of the year with a back injury. The 6-5, 300-pound Peterson, who started 42 games for the Tar Heels will will undergo surgery later today. Because he has already redshirted, it is unlikely that Peterson will be eligible for any extra eligibility. And if missing half the season wasn’t bad enough for his draft prospects, the NFL could be extra wary in April about a back issue.
Updated mock posted … The GBN projection for this year’s opening round has been updated, based on the current draft order and the first GBN Big Board of the 2017 draft year. However, while the odds are we won’t get more than 1-2 dead-on this early in the draft process, we hope to give some kind of an idea which players likely will be available where based on current intel.
Bonus coverage … There are a couple of potentially intriguing games on the college football schedule this evening for those who aren’t baseball fans and are not enamored with the NFL’s Thursday night match-up as Miami (4-2) plays at Virginia Tech (4-2) at 7 PM ET on ESPN in what amounts to a virtual elimination game for both team’s ACC playoff prospects. Then at 10:15, #14 Boise State (6-0) puts its BCS busting hopes in the line when BYU (4-3) plays on the blue field. And there will be some pretty prospects for the 2017 draft on the field in both games. more
Gator DE could miss rest of year … There are fears at Florida that senior DE Bryan Cox, who the GBN has rated as the #8 prospect at the position for the 2017 draft, will miss the rest of the year after suffering a freak injury to his thumb during warmups for last week’s game with Missouri.
GBN Big Board posted … A little later than we originally had hoped, but the GBN Big Board is up ranking the top 100 prospects or so for the 2017 draft which is, as we speak, just 190 days away! Hang in there guys!
Vols RB injured; likely out a month … Tennessee junior RB/KR Alvin Kamara will miss the next 2-4 weeks after suffering an LCL sprain as well as an undisclosed meniscus injury that may need arthroscopic surgery after he took a late hit out of bounds on a punt return in the Alabama game Saturday. Kamara, a nifty change-of-pace back who is a potential mid-round prospect at the 2017 draft.
Packers get vet Chiefs’ RB Davis in trade … Updated: Green Bay has acquired RB Knile Davis from Kansas City in a trade. The Chiefs will reportedly receive a conditional late-round pick for Davis, who was KC’s third round selection in 2013.
Current first-round selection order posted … With Arizona well on the way to a win over the Jets in the Monday night game, here is the updated selection order for the opening round of the 2017 draft if the draft were to be held this week. Note that the opponents’ combined winning percentage is for a team’s full 16-game schedule, not just the games they have played to date.
College injury updates … Florida OLB Jarrad Davis, who we have rated as the #3 guy at the position for the 2017 draft, is out indefinitely after suffering what is being described as a badly sprained ankle in the Gators’ win over Missouri on the weekend. Meanwhile, Oklahoma junior RB Samaje Perine, one of the top prospects at the position for the upcoming draft, will be out the next 2-3 weeks because of a pulled muscle in his leg suffered in last Saturday’s 38-17 win over Kansas State. At the same time, North Carolina WR Mack Hollins will miss the rest of the year after breaking his collarbone in the Tar Heels’ win over Miami on the weekend. Hollins is a later round prospect with some big-play ability after averaging over 20 yards per catch over his career. Elsewhere, Clemson junior RB, another top 10 RB prospects for this year’s draft is under concussion protocol and can’t play until he is medically cleared after being carted off the field by a hard hit in the game against North Carolina State this past weekend. And Nevada RB Akeel Lynch, who started his career at Penn State, has announced his retirement from football after suffering 2 concussions in a short period of time; as a result he had missed 4 of Nevada’s 6 games this season to date. Better news though for LSU junior RB Len Fournette, a top ten candidate for the 2017 draft who has been hobbled much of the year by an ankle injury, as he will reportedly be back in the Tigers lineup this coming weekend against Ole Miss after sitting out the past 3 weeks.
#2 pick at stake in Monday nighter … NFL execs have been literally pulling their hair out so far this season trying to explain the continuing drop in TV ratings for prime time games. Interest in the election, major league baseball’s pennant races and the growth of alternate entertainment venues have all been identified as possible causes. What nobody seems willing to accept is that week in and week out the prime time games the league is offering just aren’t particularly attractive. That will be the case again tonight when the 2-3 Arizona Cardinals host the 1-4 New York Jets in this week’s Monday night game. At least the game has some draft relevancy. A loss by the Jets, for example, would drop them into the 2nd pick overall slot were the draft held this week. However, a win by the Jets would move San Francisco up to the second pick, with Carolina at #3. No question, though, about the #1 pick this week after Cleveland lost in Tennessee yesterday to drop to 0-6 and remain as the league’s only remaining winless team. We will have the full updated weekly selection order after the tonight’s Monday nighter.
Giants win; save season despite more self-inflicted wounds … The Giants may have saved their season at least for now with a come-from-behind 27-23 win over Baltimore. That got them back to .500 at 3-3 and kept them in the thick of the race for playoff spots in the NFC. Indeed, despite the 3-3 start, the Giants are just ½ game out of the second wild card and while they still have to play the games the Giants are through the toughest part of the season. There 6 opponents to date, for example, have a combined record of 21-10, whereas the remaining 10 opponents are just 26-31. And that could get them back in the good graces of NFL sportsbook betting sources going forward. However, if the Giants are going to be more than a .500 team they just have to stop shooting themselves in the foot. More Giants report
Vols LB done for year … There has still been no official confirmation from team sources, but it appears that Tennessee OLB Jalen Reeves-Maybin has undergone surgery to repair an ailing shoulder. In fact, it was the second surgery for Reeves-Maybin on the shoulder this year and the third overall. There also isn’t any word on the projected recovery time other than Reeves-Maybin hopes to be ready to participate in pr-draft testing. Reeves-Maybin, a converted safety who had 240 tackles in two-plus seasons as a starter for the Volunteers, had been considered to be a potential top 100 pick for the 2017 draft.
So how are all those trades working out?? … That will be part of the question later today when Cleveland plays at Tennessee in a 1 PM ET game on CBS. This will be the second time this season that the Browns play one of the teams they worked blockbuster deals with at the 2016 draft. The Browns opened the season playing in Philadelphia with who they had traded the second pick over all this year for the 8th pick and other considerations. The Browns then swapped the 8th pick to Tennessee for the 15th and some more other considerations. In making that deal the Browns in effect passed on QB Carson Wentz whom the Eagles subsequently selected. Of course that one didn’t work out so well for Cleveland as they were thumped 29-10 by the Eagles with Wentz leading the way so needless to say they are hoping for better things in Nashville later today. Needless to say that Cleveland, the league’s last remaining winless team are hoping for anything good at this point. Meanwhile, the logjam of teams with one win will thin out this week as there are two games between one-win teams with Carolina playing at New Orleans, while Jacksonville is at Chicago. And just a heads up, we will be posting the initial weekly updated 2017 draft selection order after Monday night’s game. Stay tuned!
Top 2 college teams facing tough road games … Interesting day coming up in college football as both the top two rated teams in the country play other Top 10 teams on the road tomorrow. #1 ranked Alabama, for example, plays at #8 Tennessee, while second-ranked Ohio State takes on 9th rated Wisconsin in Madison. Needless to say both games represent something of a bonanza for NFL scouts as some really good prospects will be going up against each other. And those games are just the tip of the iceberg in what should be another pretty good weekend on the college docket. Here’s GBN Associate Editor Pigskin Paul Guillemette’s preview of who to watch in this weekend’s key college games.