Mel Kiper 2017 Top 10 at each offensive position ($)

Submitted by umjgheitma on May 18th, 2016 at 5:09 PM

Jake Butt listed at #1 TE (duh) but has Mason Cole as the #1 underclassman center without ever playing a snap at the position in a game I believe. That's pretty high praise even given the Mel Kiper grain of salt. I'm excited to see how it turns out.

....Of course what he fails to mention is how Mason is not NFL ready yet and will need another year of seasoning before going pro *wink wink*…


Bo Nederlander

May 18th, 2016 at 7:11 PM ^

Respectfully, I'm inclined to disagree here. Jehu has all the talent he needs to be a great NFL receiver. I didn't see one game last year where he was given an opportunity to catch something wildly hard [but possible] and failed. Amara obviously did with that amazing catch against BYU. I think when tested in that capacity, he'll prove his true capability. Bias aside. 


May 18th, 2016 at 5:13 PM ^

Did the Leidner family hire a PI to take compromising pics of both McShay and Kiper?  McShay had him going in the 20s in the first round next year, and now Kiper has him as the #2 Sr. QB and a 1st round possibility?  Or is this Kiper throwing McShay some cover for that projection?

Space Coyote

May 18th, 2016 at 9:03 PM ^

Teams likely see a lot of similarities with Jacksonville QB Blake Bortles as well. He's a big body that can run pretty well and break some tackles and has a decent arm in terms of strength, but his mechanics are wildly broken and not really improving. I honestly wouldn't even have him as a draftable player. But he threw nearly 60% in a "pro-style" offense, has started a long time, and has the size/athletic tools scouts look for, so until other guys pass him, apparently he's "up there".

And Beathard shouldnt be a sleeper. That guy is legit. He is, right now, far and away one of the top 2 QBs in the league along with Barrett, and if it wasn't for Barrett's freshman year, he would be far and away the best. The guy can make all the throws you ask of him, far sideline, corner, post, whatever. Threw nearly 62% last year despite going deep an awful lot and not having much in the way of receivers outside of possession TEs and some raw WRs. Iowa doesn't give him a lot of opportunity to shine because of their offense, but I bet he ends up a top 6 QB in next year's draft as they open up their offense a bit more for him.

I think you're looking: Watson, Chad Kelly (Ole Miss), Falk (Wash St), Dane Evans (Tulsa), Gunner Kiel (Cincinatti), Brad Kaaya (Miami), and Beathard in some order. Some of those guys would have to declare early, Baker Mayfield could likely convince a team he's Johnny Football without the issues, Falk will have to convince people he isn't just another Leach system QB, Kelly has to drastically read the field better, but yeah, Beathard is a legit NFL prospect (and all those guys are significantly better than Leidner). Beathard is more college ready than probably all but 3 or 4 QBs.


May 18th, 2016 at 10:00 PM ^

I've heard from a couple scouts who already had a jumpstart on 2017 QB class. They said Watson is the only QB who can potentially be drafted at 1st round.  They're a big fan of Mayfield, but would like to see his progression this season. They're not as big of a fan of Kaaya because he's mechanical in movement and throws and doesn't do well beyond first read.

They have Chad Kelly as a draftable QB (not top 2 rounds though), but he has big time off field issues that he must address.  Gunner Kiel has fallen off out of their favor and needs to shed injury label (also his play last season hasn't been all that good). They're not a big fan of Dane Evans and ambivalent on Luke Falk.

They told me to keep an eye out on CJ Beathard and said that he's a name to watch for the 2017 draft. I agree with them. He's legit and can really play IMO.  He just doesn't have anything beyond the running game.

Space Coyote

May 19th, 2016 at 10:52 AM ^

Which is unfortunate for Michigan, because he's a good to great college football player. But I think to translate to the NFL he still has a lot to prove. People bring up Wilsin with Barrett because both are smaller QBs that are good athletes that are black. He isn't even close to what Wilson was at this stage though. Wilson has superb mechanics and is accurate down field, Barrett struggles there. He shows the ability to have great short area accuracy, but it isn't consistent enough, particularly the timing. So for a shorter/smaller QB he needs to get his mechanics much more consistent to get to that Wilson/Brees/Bridgewater level. He's not there yet. If he left early I think the highest he'd be is a mid round guy. But if he can show a trajectory of improvement over the next two years then I think you start talking about a guy that can be a early round pick. He's just not there yet. That MSU game plan was incredibly damning for OSU's trust of his arm strength and where he is currently at.

And people will surely say "look at his numbers". But we all know the talent level at OSU. When you can dump it off to a covered Zeke and get 7 yards, it's a worry that he only averaged just north of 6 YPA last year. Gotta show confidence in his body and in the scheme again.

I Want To Believe

May 20th, 2016 at 12:26 AM ^

Admittedly I don't see Mitch Leidner as ever taking a single meaningful snap at the next level. Then again, the influx of spread offenses at the youth, high school, and college levels is really watering down the QB talent. Very few guys that can take 3, 5, or 7 step drops and deliver balls on time while reading defenses.

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turd ferguson

May 18th, 2016 at 5:21 PM ^

If Cole leaves, the 2017 OL will be seriously depleted.  I'm probably missing someone, but wouldn't be we down to Newsome, Kugler, Dawson, JBB, Runyan, Ulizio, and the incoming freshmen (Bredeson, Onwenu, Spenellis)?  Not a lot of room for error there.  I wouldn't be surprised to see a few of those guys worked into the lineup a bit this year.


May 18th, 2016 at 5:39 PM ^

Cole isn't leaving. I can't even recall the last Michigan lineman who left for the NFL before his eligibility expired. He's also an interior player on the next level and thoe guys usually aren't as high of picks as tackles. 

In terms of the 2017 OL, I'm guessing Cole, Newsome, and Bredeson will be locks to start with guys like Onwenu, Dawson, Kugler, and possibly a FR like Isaiah Wilson pushing for the other two spots.


May 18th, 2016 at 5:46 PM ^

It actually seems like our O line is going to be rather veteran in 2017, at least on paper. There's potential for there to be 4 seniors and a junior, and the likely replacements would be Onwenu and Bredeson, highly rated players in their 2nd year under Drevno. I can't imagine that unit will be a problem in 2017.


May 19th, 2016 at 2:20 AM ^

Who seems to favor going when your stock is high.
I doubt that if cole is seen as a round one thru 3 pick this coaching staff recommend that a player return unless they see obvious ways to improve a players stock.
I dont get the return of lewis or butt, but from everything they say to recruits about staying 3 or 4 years i believe that this staff encourages players to take advantage when the opportunity is the there.
Edit: upon review, i dont know. Andrew luck returned to play under shaw in the transition year, but he was a sure fire number 1. In harbaugh's tenure at stanford, his only 2 top 3 round picks (fua and gerhart) both had eligibility left. Im not including guys after the 11 draft though harbaugh may well have counseled them bc he wasnt the hc at stanford then.


May 18th, 2016 at 6:44 PM ^

unfortunately 2017 OL will likely be depleted regardless.  theyve signed 3, 3, 2 and 2 OL over the past 4 classes (though they initially signed 6 in 2013) which is not enough.

youre absolutely right, theres no room for error.  itll be interesting to see how harbaugh and drevno go about identifying 7-8 capable bodies and then molding into cohesive OL (especially since they cant supplement via JC prospects like almost every other top program).  

development of younger players at OL and DL will go a long way to determining how good this team will be in 2017 and 2018  (and adding elite players this class capable of stepping in early would be great)


May 18th, 2016 at 6:24 PM ^

I don't see why Cole would leave early. If he is projected as an interior lineman or even a SAK, wouldn't two years of C/G give him a better chance of going early in the draft?

Mr Miggle

May 18th, 2016 at 7:36 PM ^

Sometimes there isn't much room to move up and inside OL have relatively low ceilings in the draft. His best bet might be to move back to tackle for his senior season. At this point, it's impossible to make a good guess at our top five OL in 2017.

Mr. Yost

May 18th, 2016 at 9:35 PM ^

Cole is going to have to DOMINATE to leave early. I mean like best center of all-time dominate.

It's far more likely he still plays at an All-American level, returns for his senior a captain and widely considered the best C in Michigan history when he leaves as a Rimington Award Winner and late first round to mid-2nd round draft pick.

Space Coyote

May 18th, 2016 at 9:46 PM ^

No pressure, kid.

Signed David Molk, David Baas, Rod Payne, John Vitale, Tom Dixon, George Lilja, Watt Downing... just to name a few fairly recent All-Americans at that position.

EDIT: Meant as a reply to Mr. Yost.