NFL Committee Told Ford, Hodges, and Evans to stay in school in December

On my professional teams blog there is a pro scout (of 30 Years) that comes on from time to time to discuss prospects. If you want to see his credentials, here is bio page: Dave Te' Thomas

Naturally I like to ask him about VT players. Here is what he had to say after I asked him about Isaiah Ford:

Ford blew it & so did the school. They are one of those teams that kick out "great" 40s & such. That is, until you put a watch on him. Ford runs 4.31, they said. Well, look at his combine & pro day & you wonder if the school ran him in a 30 instead of a 40.
Back in December, EVERYONE on the committee told all three of those young palyers (Ford, Hodges, Jerod Evans) they were not ready for prime time. Ford started the season great, but you never saw that "school speed" on any tapes. Hodges is raw, but could sneak into the end of Day Two thanks to his athleticism, but Ford & Evans are going to wish they stayed another year under Justin Fuente (my opinion - most underrated offensive mind in college not named PJ Fleck - a major rising star if ever there was on - Fleck) for another year. Day 3 for both - tell them to go fishing on the 27-28.

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Comments

This type of grade on Ford frustrates me. The only knock he refers to is his speed, and says he would have benefited from another year. Exactly how would that make him faster? He would have had the exact same scouting report next year IF he was fortunate enough to not get injured.

"with all due respect, and remember I’m sayin’ it with all due respect, that idea ain’t worth a velvet painting of a whale and a dolphin gettin’ it on" - Ricky Bobby

That's why the Hokies need an Assistant Leonard. I have all sorts of tricks up my sleeve. I can get it done.

Leonard. Duh.

That's a rough take. We'll see how it plays out, but that seems really weird for all of them to be told to take another year and all 3 of them ignore that advice.

"Jerod Evans had more moves on that run than Bayer has aspirin!"

-Mike Burnop, 9/24/2016

It would not be the first time players from VT leave early only to see them disappoint in the draft.

Don't let this comment take away from the fact that Arkansas blew a 24 point 2nd half lead in the Belk Bowl.
Don't let the Belk Bowl take away from the fact that Matt Ryan blew a 25 point 2nd half lead in the Super Bowl.

This is true, although as long as Ford doesn't fall to the 6th or 7th round, I don't think he'll have "disappointed" in the draft. I'm not sure where I expect Evans to go since non-starting QB's get drafted all over the place historically. Hodges, I am going to be pleasantly surprised if he is 2nd round.

Could an additional year have made a difference? Maybe - for Evans/Hodges I'd almost say "certainly". Ford? Ehhh, as mentioned, if speed is his main detractor, there's not much to be done about that other than shaving a few 100ths, perhaps.

"Jerod Evans had more moves on that run than Bayer has aspirin!"

-Mike Burnop, 9/24/2016

If Ford falls to the 6th or 7th round, someone is getting a hell of a receiver for peanuts.

Always choose joy.

FWIW, I've seen a few mocks on NFL.com that went rounds 1-6 and did not have Isaiah in them.

I get torn on this subject b/c you look at 2 things:

Team success vs drafting success. When the team does better, does that help your draft stock? Chris Long (UVA) and Colt McCoy (Texas) might say it doesn't matter, while Johnny Manziel (aTm) might disagree.

Would anyone doubt that our team would be mighty dangerous next year if all 3 stayed? No, but how that impacts Ford's draft stock, I have no idea.

It would not be the first time players from VT leave early only to see them disappoint in the draft.

I could be wrong, but I do think it's the first time three starters left early in a single season, despite all (alledgedly) getting low draft grades.

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In Isaiah's case, I think we all basically knew he was gone after this season. I knew as soon as he made that catch over half the Boston College secondary. These committees can say whatever they want about him, but I believe whoever picks him up will be getting a steal. He has good open-field speed and good hands and is an excellent route-runner.

In Bucky's case, he has all the tools necessary to become the next Jordan Reed or Jimmy Graham. His fundamentals need some work, but getting that his rookie year in the NFL while making money makes a little more sense than doing it in college and not getting paid while running the risk of getting hurt. He has the speed and size and generally doesn't drop passes. He was very productive for us, and I believe he will be an excellent player one day.

In Jerod's case, as puzzling as the decision was, I get it. He's already 23 years old. A prospect's value decreases with age. Jerod is a little bit like Bucky in terms of the physical capabilities being there. Unfortunately for Jerod, though, Bucky's fundamental fixes will be much easier than his. He is going to have to learn to go through multiple reads in less than five seconds, and he struggled to make it through two last season. If there is anyone capable of working hard enough to achieve this, though, it's Jerod. Check out his cover photo on Twitter. He is one of the most success-driven players to ever put on a VT jersey.

While it sucks from our point of view as fans that these three are gone, it is ultimately their life and not ours. While I don't necessarily think an extra year in school wouldn't have benefitted them, I also don't think they will be as unsuccessful as this committee is saying they'll be.

Marshall University student.
Virginia Tech fanatic.

Watching a lot of Skins games, I see Ford as good enough to be in Jamison Crowder's position at the next level. Unless I am missing something big in their size/speed measurables.

The Dude Abides

Crowder operates more in the slot (i think). Ford doesn't have that speed to do that (apparently).

I'm a Redskins fan as well. I see him more as a Pierre Garon type on the outside. Reliable hands, good route runner, good enough speed.

Marshall University student.
Virginia Tech fanatic.

The committee tells everyone not projected as a Round 1 or 2 pick to come back. So no surprise there.

I thought that was common knowledge. The draft grade for people leaving early is 1, 2, stay in school, right?

Ford only started the season great? He seemed pretty great all the way through to me.

They might be thinking about all the increased Cam catches towards the end of the season because they were double covering Ford.

Ford's productivity dropped off some as the season went on. Nicked up plus additional attention?

I personally think the vocal scouts, talent evaluators, and so called draft experts are a bunch of hacks that like to hear their own voice half the time. The people whose opinion really matter know its not in their best interest to speak out about it. Leaks that do get out are self serving or meant as some kind of leverage tactic. I guess we will know for sure in about a week.

Back to this scout attacking the school for exaggerating Ford's 40 time. It is quite possible Ford did run a lower time prior to packing on that last minute muscle. Also any scout that thinks that difference in 40 time is going to make or break the success of a wide receiver isn't much of an evaluator if you ask me.

"with all due respect, and remember I’m sayin’ it with all due respect, that idea ain’t worth a velvet painting of a whale and a dolphin gettin’ it on" - Ricky Bobby

Let's face it VT has been known for exaggerating times, just like Florida was when Urban Meyer had basically a whole 22 man team running sub 4.4's on their board. I personally take anytime I see from VT and add .15 to the 40 time.

I clocked Marcus Vick at a 4.25, but mostly because Coach Whammy was clocking it. It was a fast time, but not that fast.

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Was that with or without police pursuit? That could mean the difference of a couple hundredths of a second

Now finish up them taters; I'm gonna go fondle my sweaters.

Careful, you don't want a certain robot to come back and start arguing over Marcus agian

Haters gonna hate, potatoes gonna potate, and hetzers gonna hetz

Haha....word has it Beamer set the 40 course on a downslope and in the direction of the predominant wind direction. That's why MV7 ran a 4.1, to which even VT had to add 0.15 just to make it look legit.

"That man was violating a city ordinance, and I was just doing my duty to enforce it." - Mike Curtis

"..because anytime you go upside a man's head, or a woman's, they have a tendency to blink their eyes.." - Deacon Jones

How much of this is "hot air" and how much of it is intentional deflection? If you have guys that you think are valuable, it is in your interest for the other teams to think they're less valuable.

This is extremely harsh. A scout should also know better than to think someone is going to drastically improve their 40 time this far along in their career. You can shave hundredths with technique and form, maybe even a tenth if you really tighten it down. But at this point in Isaiah's career he knows how to run a 40 and he probably was not going to be any faster if he came back a year, that's asinine.

I really think that he was talking about how the production from both Ford and Evans could have gone up in another year in Fuentes offense, and because of that they would both have higher grades. I don't think that he thinks Ford is going to get faster over the next year.

Also I wish we wouldn't inflate times. It really is a turn off to everyone but the home team fan base. Maybe the school did a disservice by not trying harder to get them to stay since we haven't been pumping out many pro players in recent years. Getting some descent profile kids in the League would certainly help recruiting.

What's
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I still disagree that Ford had much to gain from coming back. He had back to back 1000 yard seasons. If he comes back next year he maybe has 1200? 1300 yards? MAYBE. It looks a little better but he is already a very talented route runner and he isn't going to get faster. We (VT) would benefit from him coming back way more than he would. I just don't see how coming back would have made a significant impact on his stock at all.

As much as I would have loved to see Ford come back for his senior season. If he has graduated, he really doesn't have a great season to stick around other than loving the location, school, teammates, and maybe trying to be the first three time 1,000 yard receiver in school history.

I think all three would have benefitted greatly by staying another year in CJF's offense, especially Evans.

"That man was violating a city ordinance, and I was just doing my duty to enforce it." - Mike Curtis

"..because anytime you go upside a man's head, or a woman's, they have a tendency to blink their eyes.." - Deacon Jones

While I know we have historically exaggerated 40 times, where did he see anything about Ford running a 4.31?

@Fightin_Gobbler

Go Hokies

Go Falcons

I was under the impression that as freshman both Ford and Phillips had 4.5+ times and that their ability had more to do with great route running, vision and skillset instead of raw athleticism. Any decent scout should have known what they were getting with Ford for a couple years now.

This guy will eat shit. Ford is going in Round 2, Hodges will also. Evans as we all know should have stayed a year, but he'll be somewhere around a 6th rounder.

Look, I also believe Ford is being undervalued, but many on here were saying Kendall Fuller still had a 1st round chance last year after his injury, and he dropped all the way towards the end of the 3rd round. People also said Logan Thomas should have been a 2nd round at worst pick, and dropped to the 4th.

We have a tendency to think our players are better than the NFL thinks they are coming out of college.

Don't let this comment take away from the fact that Arkansas blew a 24 point 2nd half lead in the Belk Bowl.
Don't let the Belk Bowl take away from the fact that Matt Ryan blew a 25 point 2nd half lead in the Super Bowl.

Kendall Fuller is a bad example. He was a victim of the injury collusion NFL teams do to pay them less (this happens both with injuries and character issues) despite getting all positive reports from medical personnel regarding his injury. He was 100% a first round corner before the injury and it is still a travesty he fell as far as he did.

"Injury collusion?" Really? NFL teams are intentionally passing on players they think are talented to uphold some conspiracy?

That made it sound like a huge conspiracy but in reality this happens too consistently to not be a thing. They all collectively save money and it's less risky. It happens with talented players with character concerns as well. There were 20+ (maybe all) teams lined up for guys like Burfict and Blount, but they were UDFA because the teams could get them for dirt cheap if nobody drafted them. There was never any doubt those guys would be NFL starters. I am usually very against "conspiracy" driven narratives, but given the NFL owners and managers handling of pretty much every money related issue with players, this is well within the range of being feasible.

Sound like they are minimizing their risks by playing someone less money with questionable histories (Personal/Injury), which is a good business at the end of the day.

Any of those guys could be late round draft picks too. Some just don't check out.

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It's a good business practice, but in the way it plays out (even more specifically with guys like Blount and Burfict) those guys were going to play in the NFL and were 10000000000000% surefire draft talents (for sure R1-4 talent), it is unlikely all 32 teams, many of whom wanted them on their team, all failed to spend a draft pick on them without some level of knowing nobody else would draft them.

Yeah, but, what do they gain from letting him fall out of the draft? If a team thought a player was worth a 7th round pick they'd spend a 7th round pick on him.

Even if "20+ (maybe all) teams lined up" for a guy, only one of them can get him in the end, and if there's truly that much interest there's likely to be a bidding war. There is absolutely no reason for a team to wait on that guy if he's the most valuable player (in their opinion) left on the board, if their goal is signing him to a rookie-minimum contract.

"10000000000% sure fire" - Hindsight is 20-20. If it were that easy to project NFL starters why was Tom Brady a sixth round pick? A conspiracy? The player with the most Super Bowl rings ever? With the league cracking down on character issues like never before, plus the uncertainty regarding these players effect on your locker room, plus the uncertainty of college talent translating into the NFL (despite your assertion to the contrary), obviously teams were scared off and used their picks elsewhere. The conspiracy angle is ridiculous.

Sure hindsight is 20/20, but there was little doubt about their talent if you ever had the opportunity to watch those guys in college.

Also, I'm not really trying to perpetuate a major conspiracy here, I opened that door up on accident and I could not care less if you think it's ridiculous. I personally do not hold a high opinion of NFL ownership and management, particularly as it pertains to player rights, well being, and how little voice the NFLPA actually has.

"Little doubt about their talent". There are hundreds, thousands of fast, strong guys out there every year. Will they make it in the NFL? That's where all the other factors come in and guesswork begins? Can you work hard, harder than you've ever worked before? Can you watch film? Are you dedicated? Can you stay out of jail/other trouble? Can you get along with others? On and on. Talent is one of many factors

I might be missing a key factor but how are they saving money by doing this? They still have to use the picks and therefore pay other players a pretty standard amount of money, no?

VT Class of '12 (MSE), MVBone, Go Hokies!

As an UDFA, they most likely got a bigger contract than a 6th or 7th round pick.

Burflict and Blount had reputations for off-field issues even in college, with Blount getting cold-cocked after the Boise State game by another punk, so that had to play into why their draft stock dropped. Still surprised it fell to the point of being undrafted, but character matters to the NFL, or at least that's what they want us to think.

"That man was violating a city ordinance, and I was just doing my duty to enforce it." - Mike Curtis

"..because anytime you go upside a man's head, or a woman's, they have a tendency to blink their eyes.." - Deacon Jones

I'm pretty sure it was Blount who threw the punch

"It might be dark outside, but it's LeDay in here." -Jay Bilas

People said that about Logan after his sophomore year. Nobody thought that when he ended up going pro.

I'm saying that about Ford because most other scouts are saying that. This guy is the first to knock Ford at all about coming out of school early. Pretty sure all of us who are high on Ford aren't just drinking Kool Aid.

I think it's more that we can't possibly have a macro view of all the available players.

I know why Bucky went pro, he wants the money. But going after only 1 year as a split out wide receiver is going to cost him. His outside blocking, route running, and catching on the run could only have improved with a second year lined up outside.

To the teams looking at him as a WR, he has only one year of production as a WR with so so blocking, route running, and catching on the run.

To the teams looking at him as a TE, he has a couple of years of okay production as a TE with so so blocking, and not much else in an offense that didn't hit the QB as much as it should have.

I'm not sure what Ford could do in his senior year to improve his draft stock. He's not going to run a 4.3 overnight. He'd probably be a 3rd round pick in the 2019 draft only he'd be out a year's worth of money.

Similar to the reasons I thought Dadi should have left after his Junior season. He wasn't going to get bigger and he was still going to have to transition to a 3-4 OLB, even with another year playing at VT (at end, of course).

He could have put on another 10-15 lbs.

Yes, he wasn't likely to get faster or develop better body control. But, as I've said here before, he was a true Jr. going up in the draft against a bunch of guys 2 (and sometimes 3) yrs more physically mature. And he certainly could have made some improvements in his route running and, in particular, his yards after catch (which goes back to being more physically mature).

Ford has neither the extraordinary speed nor size that NFL teams want. But if he gets closer to ideal in the size aspect, his draft prospects probably would have improved to the turn of a round or so higher in the draft - which means 2x the $$.

On paper, Ford should have stayed. Those who think this scout was being overly harsh need to remove their O&M glasses.

Have you seen him recently? He put the 15 lbs of muscle on easily.

He still looks quite wiry compared to NFL receivers.

Again, take off the the O&M glasses. The scout's comments are a lot more right than wrong.

He already runs routes well. Any improvements there would be marginal. He'd never have the height and speed to be a 1st round pick. NFL teams draft on potential as much as they do college production. If he waited a year he'd be pushed down by the crop of juniors that will come out next year. Plus there's the time value of money- even if he earns more by waiting a year, he never gets the money back he could have earned.

He's a good route runner, but not a great one. There was certainly room for improvement. Given his lack of freak speed and/or size he needed to be superb at as many things as he could - and IMO the only things he was truly superb at was body control and, perhaps, hands.

Player A: 30 games, 114 catches, 1729 yards, 22 TDs
Player B: 29 games, 210 catches, 2967 yards, 24 TDs

Player B is Ford. Player A is John Ross. Ford was more productive in college and is more polished but Ross is going to be a first round pick because Ross has what NFL teams want- ludicrous speed. Ford's college numbers were better than Mike Williams's numbers but Williams is likely a first round pick because he's bigger and that's what NFL teams want. Ford's lack of physical gifts put a hard ceiling on where he would go. NFL teams aren't that concerned about route running or blocking because those are teachable things, and they've shown an arrogance about being able to teach those things. If Ford stuck around for another year he'd still have the same weaknesses and would still end up a 3rd round prospect behind guys who can run 4.4, assuming he didn't get pull an Exum and get hurt and wreck his value entirely (which is another significant risk).

Ford has played in more than 29 games for those stats....try 40 games. Your point still stands the NFL is about certain skill sets moreso than production in college. I can't speak for John Ross, but I doubt he was counted on as a true freshmen to carry the load at WR due to poor depth as well.

That was a math error on my part because I stink at math. Ford has played in 39 games, Ross 40. I should never add things on my own without a calculator.

It's not just Fords measurables. He was very Consistentbut not very explosive/exciting. He had very few wow plays. Fans wanted to say he was better than Tyler Boyd at Pitt who despite similar measurables was a Highlite tape who did everything. So u can go high but need big play abilities and versatility
Ford never even ran sweeps or kicks/punts. Boyd was All American wit same measurables but was 1st round type who fell to 2nd because of a DUI gping into his final year. Ford is a great talent and even better kid but not round 1 or 2 guy. I think 4th is where he will fall.l

I can't hear Ford and Pitt in the same sentence without thinking of this:

Warning: this post occasionally contains strong language (which may be unsuitable for children), unusual humor (which may be unsuitable for adults), and advanced mathematics (which may be unsuitable for liberal-arts majors).

He really did a great job of pushing off to get that...

"We judge ourselves by our intentions and others by their behavior" Stephen M.R. Covey

“When life knocks you down plan to land on your back, because if you can look up, you can get up, if you fall flat on your face it can kill your spirit” David Wilson

pushing off? You mean when the defender was holding down his right hand while going up for the ball? That's textbook pass interference if I've ever seen it...oh I get it. :-P

Warning: this post occasionally contains strong language (which may be unsuitable for children), unusual humor (which may be unsuitable for adults), and advanced mathematics (which may be unsuitable for liberal-arts majors).

I agree, and that scout's prognostication into when they will be drafted is probably spot on, with both Hodges and Ford being lucky to get selected before the start of Round 4, and Evans being probably a 6th or 7th Round pick, at best.

"That man was violating a city ordinance, and I was just doing my duty to enforce it." - Mike Curtis

"..because anytime you go upside a man's head, or a woman's, they have a tendency to blink their eyes.." - Deacon Jones

They say 4 out of 3 people are bad at Math.

We put the K in Kwality

You may be thinking of "meth".

Interestingly only 2 of the top 10 leaders in receiving yards last year were 6'3 and above (Mike Evans and Julio Jones). Most were hovering around 6' 200lb. He could stand to break 200 pounds (and I think he has considering they still list him at his 2016 weight of 194), but his height/weight is in line with the top receivers in the league.

http://www.espn.com/nfl/statistics/player/_/stat/receiving/sort/receivin...

I thought he checked in at 6'1" 194lb at the NFL Combine?

On paper, Ford should have stayed. Those who think this scout was being overly harsh need to remove their O&M glasses.

+1. I don't put much stock in what McShay or Kiper say, but I think the NFL scouts are typically pretty accurate; this is their job, and their salary depends on it.

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There's also the counter argument that suggests that scouts who are infatuated with measurables ending looking stupid a lot. Exhibit A: JaMarcus Russell. Remember, Jerry Rice ran a 4.7 at the combine.

The question they should be asking: can he play the game?

40 times and measurables are no indication the guy will be a stud in the NFL.

For what its worth, this guy doesn't put as much stock into stats. He uses them as part of the formula.

What's
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Counter: Yeah but you used two examples of guys not panning out to support your point. That's not a good P-sample at all.

"You can't coach size" etc, so there's a premium on that.

So if Ford came back, he would likely not drastically improve his 40 time, which seems to be the biggest knock; would likely not see a big improvement on his numbers, having a very good Ankle Assassin on the field with him, a new QB (although that was not known when he declared, at least not known to us, Ford may have known), and he would have been facing double coverage the entire season; and on top of that a whole additional season of risking significant injury....where is the plus side to coming back, from an NFL perspective?

Now finish up them taters; I'm gonna go fondle my sweaters.

Ok let's say they all come back. We would be a legit title contender this year. We would have a good chance of getting some great national exposure, because we would A) Be ranked fairly high B) Could repeat as Division Champs C) Because of QB play, probably be favored against let's say Clemson. The bigger national exposure would surely help all 3 players.

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And they would have been playing a schedule that included regular season games against WVU and Clemson, with a likely ACC title game against Clemson or FSU. There would have been more than enough opportunity to prove themselves and raise their draft stock in high profile games.

Sure, their raw abilities might not have improved, but it would have given the scouts more of an opportunity to see what they can do against top competition and move themselves up the draft board. Instead, they cashed out when many say they should have let things develop more.

The closer I get to the draft and the more I hear about them all, the more I worry that one of the 3 might not even get drafted. That would be a monumental blunder if it happened, and would look poorly upon the coaches who (at least publicly) encouraged them to make that mistake.

Don't let this comment take away from the fact that Arkansas blew a 24 point 2nd half lead in the Belk Bowl.
Don't let the Belk Bowl take away from the fact that Matt Ryan blew a 25 point 2nd half lead in the Super Bowl.

The playing against elite competition argument is bogus. D2 and FCS guys get drafted constantly and have never played so much as the equivalent of 1 ACC schedule much less 3 years worth, and never been on national TV EVER. There's film to watch, evaluations made, pro days, measurements, timing, drills, interviews, and then basically guesswork on the part of the teams with a large pool of candidates. At this point for Bucky and Ford one more Clemson game won't make or break them

The NFL Draft advisory is flawed in a sense, from the perspective that they only three grades: potential 1st round, potential 2nd round, or neither (i.e. "stay in school"). The problem with this rating system is that a player like Ford is never going to be a 1st or 2nd round pick due to his speed. His speed isn't going to change in a year, and while it's possible another productive season in college would bump him up the draft board slightly in 2018 as compared to 2017, he'd be forfeiting a year of NFL pay and- more importantly in the big picture- a year of NFL service that puts him closer to his 2nd contract that is not capped like a rookie contract. So, even though he is unlikely to be a 1st or 2nd rounder in 2017, it still made complete sense for him to enter the draft.

I do think Bucky would likely have benefited from another year in school, but there was almost as much downside as upside in coming back, so I fully expected him to go pro and do not see this as a misjudgment on his part.

Of the trio, Evans clearly had the most to gain by coming back for another season, but with everything he went through just to get to this point, I can understand him wanting to take his chance at the NFL while healthy and coming off a highly productive season. Sure, if he came back to school, had another productive season and improved his footwork and mechanics, he'd improve his draft stock a ton, but on the flipside if he tore his ACL again, he wouldn't get drafted at all. While an insurance policy could protect the loss in future earnings, the payout would be limited based on his draft advisory grade, and further, it only helps financially and does zip to give him back his dream of playing in the NFL.

I don't think the scout's takes are wrong in terms of where they'll be drafted (other than I could see Ford potentially going on day 2 in round 3), but for reasons that vary from player to player, I do understand why they made the choices they did.

If Jerod hadn't been our leading rusher last year, do you think he might have had a different attitude towards coming back? I think that weighed on him because he did take a lot of hits.

I know that's been an area of debate, but personally I don't think it factored much into his decision. This is conjecture on my part, but my guess is his mind was pretty set before that season that he'd try to make the jump if he made it through the season healthy & had good production.

I think his personal situation and that Belk Bowl shopping spree factored the heaviest into his decision.

I'm choosing to blindly throw on my O&M glasses and fully believe that Jerrod left because he knew he was going to be outplayed by JJ this year and wasn't going to be the starter. No knock whatsoever against Jerrod. Had he been here more than a year he would have been on the list of much beloved Hokies. But this is what my heart and blind optimism for a spectacular year of Hokie football requires. So I'm shotgunning that kool-aid.

I think Ford will go in 4th round

I wanna know who's gonna take Sam

Sam has Patriots written all over him.

The Orange and Maroon you see, that's fighting on to victory.

I could see the Panthers taking a chance on him. They let Tolbert walk, so they're in need of a FB.

Don't let this comment take away from the fact that Arkansas blew a 24 point 2nd half lead in the Belk Bowl.
Don't let the Belk Bowl take away from the fact that Matt Ryan blew a 25 point 2nd half lead in the Super Bowl.

More and more teams are deciding they do not "need" a fullback. A growing number of them are transitioning to an H-back, which is usually a tight end, and will shift the H-back to the fullback spot in the formation if needed.

I don't think I would group Carolina there. They liked to use Tolbert as a pretty typical FB whose primary assignment was to block for Newton, but would also be a legitimate weapon out of the backfield. Assuming his blocking game remains strong, I could see him being a very useful addition to their offense, especially in the way they prefer to grind it out on the ground.

Don't let this comment take away from the fact that Arkansas blew a 24 point 2nd half lead in the Belk Bowl.
Don't let the Belk Bowl take away from the fact that Matt Ryan blew a 25 point 2nd half lead in the Super Bowl.

I thought the major knock on Rogers was his blocking game? Which to me means he's more like Tolbert than not.

VT Class of '12 (MSE), MVBone, Go Hokies!

It's not like Tolbert was really a fullback anyhow. I mean they tried to use him as one sometimes but I felt he left a lot to be desired in most of the traditional roles. So Sam kinda fits the Panthers mold in that regard. I would personally love to see it but I also don't want to find myself pissed off at the Panthers again if they were to cut a Hokie off the roster, as they did with Boykin when they were seemingly barebones at WR.

Not that Sam Rogers would ever be cut, of course.

VT Class of '12 (MSE), MVBone, Go Hokies!

Ehh Boykin was pretty much done at that point anyway. I give the Panthers a big pass, not only as being a fan, but also because they turned Jeff King into a pretty good NFL TE and made a nice career for James Anderson. Though, I'm still a bit ticked off they passed on Kendall about eleventy times when their biggest need in the draft was CB last year.

Don't let this comment take away from the fact that Arkansas blew a 24 point 2nd half lead in the Belk Bowl.
Don't let the Belk Bowl take away from the fact that Matt Ryan blew a 25 point 2nd half lead in the Super Bowl.

My issue with the Boykin cut was that Bersin was retained. I honestly don't think Bersin is better than Boykin at playing football from any angle.

VT Class of '12 (MSE), MVBone, Go Hokies!

As someone who lives in Washington

As someone who doesn't live in Washington... My condolences about your teams

Don't let this comment take away from the fact that Arkansas blew a 24 point 2nd half lead in the Belk Bowl.
Don't let the Belk Bowl take away from the fact that Matt Ryan blew a 25 point 2nd half lead in the Super Bowl.

I don't particularly care about Hockey. Neither do I for Baseball. But Basketball is looking good, and Washington hopefully won't mess around too much anymore for Football, but I guess that remains to be seen.

So what exactly are your condolences for?

Love the enthusiasm buddy but the Skins don't even have a GM. When your front office sucks as bad as the Skins, you have no hope. I for one will accept Alum07's condolences. With that said, #HTTR and #DCRising

"It might be dark outside, but it's LeDay in here." -Jay Bilas

THIS JUST IN. DAN SNYDER CRYING:

More and more teams are deciding they do not "need" a player that is 50 pounds overweight

FTFY

"It might be dark outside, but it's LeDay in here." -Jay Bilas

This. Ain't no way he played at 245 last year.

No, I *don't* want to go to the SEC. Why do you ask?

We don't love dem Hoos.

If Sam Rogers makes an NFL team, it will be because he can contribute on special teams. That he can do some things offensively will be secondary.

That is why the potential interest from the Patriots (At least among Hokie Fans). They have a weird collection of players that can do a lot of different things and don't mind being a special teams and trick play specialist.

Do they really have any really weirder collection than many other teams - particularly non-starting 22 guys? And are there any low round picks/UFE's that mind collecting an NFL paycheck as a special teams specialist?

Pretty sure almost every team has a backup for each of those 22 guys on the field, plus a kicker and punter, so that's 46 of your 53 already. On top of that they usually have an extra RB due to the physical wear and tear they take, an extra lineman, a couple extra CBs for nickel and dime packages, and fill out the roster with a few TEs and WRs for flexibility of the offensive packages (goal-line vs spread 2-minute drill). Not much space left for "special teams ulitity players", which is why the Patriots have gone out of their way to be creative with some of their packages (using LBs as TEs/FBs, using "utility" guys as RBs or slot WRs, etc). This is why Sam fits best on the Patriots, as they have more experience finding extra roles for lesser-used players. As much as I dislike seeing all the success they're having, I respect the system they've put in place.

Sadly, I think you're right. Also sadly, I'm not sure he'd be successful with any other team, since "creativity" isn't exactly in the vocabulary of most NFL coaches, and it'll definitely take a "creative" approach to get him involved in the NFL.

If it wasn't for Green Bay having drafted a fullback very recently, I'd love to see him there. I see him as a Patriot or Steeler otherwise

I think Ford made the correct decision. As stated above, what could he possibly to do elevate his stock? He will probably get drafted late and then be a very good and steady playmaker for someone. He's going to be fine even if he doesn't get his money during the draft.

Evans and Hodges on the other hand probably won't have productive NFL careers (only an opinion here) and will need to make their money in the draft. Bucky certainly has the measurables, but he simply doesn't appear to have the toughness (he goes down way to easily), ball skills, blocking skills, etc. of those good NFL TE/WR prospects.

Regardless of their decisions and the outcome, they are still Hokies that I enjoyed watching over the past couple of years and will pull for them no matter what.

Is it football season yet?

I still think there's a better than even chance that Cam Phillips ends up with the most productive NFL career of him, Ford, & Hodges.

Draft "analysts" have been weirdly pegging Ford as a "speed receiver" for over a year now. Everyone who has actually watched him knows that has never been his game or best asset. But somewhere along the line he picked up this national perception as a "burner" and was immediately discredited when he didn't run a fast 40.

None of the media outlets expect him to go high but I fully expect a team that has actually scouted him and not just read Walterfootball is going to take him earlier than most expect.

Without ever watching him play, they assumed he was a speed receiver because he's rail skinny.

In a mock draft with 31 other GMs as Pittsburg (Not my team). Bucky went in the second to ATL and that's it. Isaiah and Evans are still on the board in the 6th round and I'm going to pick whoevers left with my pick. Hoping it's Isaiah because he could be a possession receiver opposite Brown that would compliment their receiving core (not as a rookie obviously)z

What's
Important
Now

Oh hey Captain Obvious

I can imagine no more rewarding a career. And any man who may be asked in this century what he did to make his life worthwhile, I think can respond with a good deal of pride and satisfaction:
“I served in the United States Navy"

KCCO

Even going back to high school I have never read or heard from one person that Ford ran a low 4.3 40... In fact, I have never heard anything less than a 4.5.

Yeesh... The latest from Mike Mayock after talking to league sources has Jerod Evans going undrafted.

That would be a gut punch

Don't let this comment take away from the fact that Arkansas blew a 24 point 2nd half lead in the Belk Bowl.
Don't let the Belk Bowl take away from the fact that Matt Ryan blew a 25 point 2nd half lead in the Super Bowl.

I really don't know what Evans was thinking. He would have been the front runner to keep his job as QB, he would have broken even more records at Tech. Most importantly he would have had 2 years performance for the draft board to look at.

Would have also carried it another 210 times and on a leg that's been through some ACL damage, he thought a clipboard holder or practice squad looked might fine.

Always choose joy.

I have no idea if this is correct, but there are signs that money is a factor. So let's assume it is. Even if he gets picked up as an undrafted free agent that could mean a sizable payday for someone who has never seen money like that.

that is 100% speculation.

either way, it's his choice to make for the reasons he had. I'm more glad that VT was in a position to help him get there and he was in a position to help us in a transition year.

good luck to him and looking forward to jackson, hooker and/or bush

Saw a 7 round mock draft on NFLs website but they had Bucky going to Denver in the 3rd round, rogers to Atlanta in the 5th round then McLaughlin to Green Bay in the 7th round no ford or Evans at all I'm hoping they're wrong but man that would be tough not seeing those two drafted

Directions from Blacksburg to whoville, go north till you smell it then go east until you step in it

They didn't follow the standard advice:

3 rounds down, and we're still waiting to hear the first name.

Looks like this scout was right... And considering he said Bucky might go 3rd round, even he might have been too optimistic. This really sucks for VT, but more importantly it really sucks for the 3 players.

Don't let this comment take away from the fact that Arkansas blew a 24 point 2nd half lead in the Belk Bowl.
Don't let the Belk Bowl take away from the fact that Matt Ryan blew a 25 point 2nd half lead in the Super Bowl.

And? It is irrelevant. Brady went in 6th round. Ryan Leaf was the number 2 overall pick. Draft position is only 1 of many factors. It's an immediate money factor but not the overall success and money factor.