GT Pros is Back! Here’s What You May Have Missed

After a stressful last two weeks, as any Tech grad or student would know, it is now time to get back to writing. There have been some very exciting news over the last two weeks, so hopefully this post covers everything!

The NFL Draft has come and gone and there wasn’t a single Georgia Tech player drafted. Although this draft was abnormally deep, it is still surprising to see guys like Uzzi, Barnes, and Sweeting go undrafted. Luckily for them, however, almost all have signed UDFA deals. Here’s a list of where everyone ended up with the exception of Uzzi, who has not signed with anyone as far as I know.

Orwin Smith- Tampa Bay Buccaneers

TJ Barnes- Jacksonville Jaguars

Rod Sweeting- New Orleans Saints

Tyler Morgan- Carolina Panthers

Izaan Cross- Buffalo Bills

In NBA news, Jarrett Jack and the Warriors were able to pull a major upset over the Denver Nuggets in the 1st round of the playoffs. They now have a date with the San Antonio Spurs in the 2nd round, which means Jack will have to be a big contributor off the bench. Curry will have a hard time keeping Parker out of the paint, which means Jack will have to be even more important on the defensive end. Chris Bosh and Iman Shumpert are also still alive in the playoffs. I expect the Heat to coast by the Bulls, but the Knicks will have a very tough time scoring on the Pacers’ defense. They already lost game 1 at home, which is a really bad start to the series.

Another interesting development is the call up of Tyler Greene by the Chicago White Sox. He has played well when given the chance, and he certainly should stay on the active roster for the foreseeable future. Matt Wieters has improved on his stats recently and is starting to improve on his average. This slump has lingered longer than expected, but he still has a long season ahead of him and needs to avoid pressing.

The last two weeks have been eventful, but we are now heading into the summer, which means baseball, golf and the NBA playoffs will dominate our coverage. Make sure to come back and check out what you have missed as we gradually start to post again!

 

2013 NFL Mock Draft- Georgia Tech Edition

usatoday.com

usatoday.com

Since the NFL Draft is almost upon us, I figured it would be a nice time to do a mock draft. This will be a typical first round mock draft, but will also have projections for all of GTs potential drafted players. Do you agree or disagree with certain picks and projections? Let us know by commenting below! Continue reading

NFL Draft Speculation

waitingfornextyear.com

waitingfornextyear.com

The NFL Draft is almost two weeks away, which means teams are starting to throw out smokescreens and rumors to confuse other teams. Sometimes they can actually be quite humorous when they poorly thought out and obviously false. We’re going to ignore all of this confusion, however, and look at Tech’s players in this years draft and where they should expect to go. Continue reading

Orwin Smith Scouting Report

Orwin Smith was a fan favorite during his time on campus, but that is irrelevant now that the NFL Draft is approaching. He was unable to attend the combine and didn’t participate in Tech’s pro day, which caused his draft stock to take a hit. The most important thing in the scouting process, however, is game tape, and Orwin has quite a bit of it. He was a key contributor in Tech’s offense for three years and has made many game-changing plays in his career. This scouting report will highlight his key strengths and weaknesses by looking at the first half of the Miami game from last season (I decided to spare everyone the second half) and a highlight video of his career. Below are the two videos respectively and he is #17 like always. Continue reading

GT Pro Day Update

For those of you who are struggling to find information regarding GT’s Pro Day, here’s a link from 11Alive’s website. I haven’t seen any official performance numbers online, but that link talks a little bit about who showed up and has a pretty good video that shows everyone performing. Here’s my thoughts about todays pro day:

1) Orwin Smith lost any chance he had of getting drafted. After not attending the combine due to injury, he really needed to perform well today. Now his only chance to impress scouts will be at private workouts with individual teams. Hopefully he can come back soon so he can meet with a few teams and eventually get a training camp invite.

2) At this point Uzzi just needed to show he was healthy for the scouts who were in attendance. He is a solid mid round prospect and his game tape will speak for itself.

3) Rod Sweeting and TJ Barnes will get drafted. Sweeting performed well at the combine and apparently impressed again today. He is looking like a very nice developmental CB who should go somewhere in the 4th or 5th rounds. Barnes has also performed well in the offseason and will most likely be a 6th or 7th round pick as a developmental nose tackle. He was limited today, which means he was satisfied with his combine numbers.

4) Crenshaw mentions Tevin Washington as having to play defensive back in the NFL, but I personally disagree. Tevin does not have the athleticism to be a defensive back at the next level and I have a hard time seeing him making it out of an NFL training camp. I hope he can prove me wrong, but he never showed fantastic athleticism in college, so I don’t know how Sam thinks he can make it in the NFL.

5) Josh Nesbitt’s attendance today was surprising, but makes a ton of sense. He made the Bills roster in 2011 like Sam mentions, so he has proven he can make it in the NFL. He will definitely get a camp invite from a team.

Today’s pro day seemed like a successful one for the players who were able to perform. This was the last major event leading up to the draft, so don’t expect our players’ draft stock to change much after today. In the end I see three Tech players being drafted on the third day of the draft next month.

 

Georgia Tech Pro Day

Tomorrow is Georgia Tech’s official pro day, which means all of Georgia Tech’s draft hopefuls will be working out for NFL GMs, coaches, and scouts. As far as I know, the major players who will be performing tomorrow are Omoregie Uzzi, Orwin Smith, Rod Sweeting, TJ Barnes, and Izaan Cross. It’s also common for former players to perform at pro days in a last ditch effort to make it into the NFL, but I am not sure if that is the case for anyone this year.

I’ll write a post tomorrow to update everyone on our players’ performances and whether they helped or hurt their stock. It will be really big days for Uzzi, Smith, and Cross, since all three weren’t at the combine. Hopefully they can impress the scouts because this is their last major chance to do so.

Rod Sweeting Pre-Combine Analysis

This past Wednesday represented the start of this year’s NFL combine. Unfortunately Georgia Tech will only be represented by two players, which is a smaller number than most expected. Rod Sweeting and TJ Barnes are the two lucky Tech players to get the NFL combine invites this year, while Omoregie Uzzi and Orwin Smith were left out. Uzzi is believed to be a mid round pick and one of the top run blocking guards in the country, which makes his omission surprising. Nonetheless, let’s take a look at one of Tech’s combine performers this year, Rod Sweeting, and what he needs to do to improve his draft stock.

I will use this video as a reference, since it is one of the few available that has tape of Sweeting.

Strengths

First, let’s take a look at some parts of Sweeting’s game that I like and are building blocks for him to make an effective transition to the NFL game. Sweeting has a big frame for a corner, 6′ and 187 lbs, that allows him to be physical against bigger receivers and not get pushed around. What helps even more is that he has a nasty streak and isn’t afraid to use his body to make big hits and knock receivers off of their routes. At 3:25 in the video, he completely upends the slot receiver and takes him out of the play. He shows NFL level strength, which should impress scouts early. Sweeting also shows that he is able to effectively play the ball in the air and make adjustments. He times his jumps and is able to use his hands to knock the ball away or come down with the interception.

Rod Sweeting

Weaknesses

Now let’s see what areas he needs to work on. Sweeting consistently whiffs on tackles by taking bad angles and trying to tackle high. Multiple times late in the Virginia Tech game he took poor angles and tried to arm tackle the receiver, giving up big plays in the process. This is a really bad weakness to have, but luckily for him he has some potential in this area. When Sweeting gets into a runner/receiver’s body, he naturally finishes the tackle and runs through the player. At 3:20 in the video, Sweeting runs through the player, which is exactly what defenders are taught to do. Going lower on tackles will help him tremendously since multiples times I saw receivers shake him off. A player with his type of physicality and strength should be able to do better than that.

His biggest weakness seems to be the inability to turn and lower his hips quickly when adjusting to a receivers route. At 4:25 in the video, the receiver blows by him because he is unable to quickly turn and explode to keep up. He got burned deep multiple times in this game, but this was the first time that Logan Thomas and his receiver were able to put a play together. Sweeting should be able to put some of these concerns to rest if he shows up focused and performs well at the combine.

Combine

After looking at Sweeting’s play, I expect him to perform well at the strength drills. He shouldn’t have a problem putting up an above average number of reps in the bench press and posting high broad and vertical jumps. In order to really help his draft stock though, he will have to impress scouts on the position and agility drills. The position drills will allow him  to show fluid hip movement and explosion out of his breaks. The agility drills(3-cone drill and shuttle drills) will show how quickly he is able to change direction, which is extremely important for CBs.

Since everyone loves to talk about the 40, I will touch up on it. Although it would be nice for Sweeting to come out and post an impressive 40 time, it will be more important for him to post a fast 10 and 20 yard split. This is probably the stat that scouts and GMs care about the most. The prospects who can show explosion off the line will improve their draft stock and have successful combines.

Sweeting post game interview after winning the Sun Bowl MVP award.

Sweeting post game interview after winning the Sun Bowl MVP award.

Overall

So what does all of this mean for Rod Sweeting? Right now he is projected as a late round pick. If he can show at the combine that he has improved in some of the areas mentioned above, then he can move himself into the 4th or 5th round. Currently, I see a prospect who, with proper coaching, will be able to see playing time on an NFL team. He doesn’t show the potential to ever be a true starting CB, but he should develop into a rotational CB if he has the proper work ethic. He is an athletic player who has potential, and that by itself will probably get him drafted. It will be interesting to see how he does throughout the draft process because he is by far the most interesting Tech prospect to me this year.

Extra Information

Cornerbacks and Safeties arrive at the combine tomorrow. They will go through the pre workout activities(team interviews, aptitude tests, physicals, etc.) for the next three days and then have their workouts on Tuesday. All coverage is on NFL Network so record it if you won’t be home or tune your television to it in between classes.