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My All UDFA Offensive Line-up
2022 NFL Draft isn't just about the top talent.
☀️ Good morning,
Welcome to draft week, after months and months of speculation we’ll finally get answers to all our questions this week.
We’ll kick things off in the same way we always do with some quick notes, but then I’m going to do something slightly different. I’m a little tired of talking about the same prospects, so I thought I’d put together my all UDFA team, made up of players who are expected to go undrafted. Today, we start with the offense.
The Jets have worked out Drake London and I imagine they’ve worked out plenty of prospects that we don’t know about, so if the guy you like isn’t on the visit tracker, I wouldn’t sweat it.
Multiple reports did the rounds yesterday that the Jets were willing to offer up the #10 overall pick in the draft to secure Deebo.
Rich Cimini also noted that “The Jets, who hosted Thibodeaux on a pre-draft visit, came away with the belief that one narrative surrounding him -- a me-first guy with a strong personality -- is overblown”.
Fans may not be keen on adding a CB at #4, but Daniel Jeremiah who worked with Joe Douglas as a scout in Baltimore said that’s where he’d go if he were JD, and he’d go Jermaine Johnson or Garrett Wilson at #10 as well.
The Jets met with UTSA corner Tariq Woolen virtually, continuing to do work on some middle-to-late round CB’s. Woolen scored a 9.7 on his RAS scoring and the Jets have now met more corners than they have edges.
I love the moment the draft is over, we know the draft selections and the mad scramble to pick up as many high-quality UDFA signings begin.
I’ve spoken at length over the last few months about prospects at the top of the draft, but this week I’m going to focus on some players who may not be drafted at all.
Starting today on the offensive side of the ball with my all-UDFA offensive lineup.
QB - Cole Kelley (Southeastern Louisiana)
A former 4* recruit for Arkansas, Kelley moved to Southeastern Louisiana for more opportunities and he made the most of every single one. At 6’7 and 250lbs you’re not going to miss Kelley, and when he throws for over 5,000 yards in a season, you’re certainly not going to overlook him.
Kelley threw 556 passes last season and completed 73.4% of those (Lion receivers dropped 35 passes in 2021) for 5,156 yards and 43 touchdowns against just 10 interceptions. He was also an outstanding red-zone runner adding 390 yards and 12 touchdowns on the ground.
He’s got big mitts and can really put some juice on the football. Like a lot of college QBs, his processing will need to dramatically improve if he wants to stick in the NFL, and the level of competition in the FCS will put a question mark over his production…but it was clear to see that he was a Power-5 player and the FCS didn’t challenge him.
He may get taken in the 7th round, but most analysts have him as a UDFA and he’ll get an opportunity somewhere to stick on a practise squad while he works on the technical and mental side of being an NFL QB.
RB - Leddie Brown (West Virginia)
It’s not often you’ll find a rusher with back-to-back 1000-yard seasons on the UDFA list, but that’s the nature of the position in the 21st century.
Brown has excellent size at 213lbs and he plays with a physical downhill nature, he has some wiggle in the hips and he’s capable of showing patience to exploit missed gap assignments, add in that he’s a willing pass protector and I’d bet on him sticking on an NFL roster.
Brown did experience some issues with ball security in 2021 with 5 fumbles and 2 drops to his name, but that’s something a good NFL coaching staff can work on. His 640 yards after contact and 49 missed tackles forced are good numbers, and he had 26 runs that went for 10 or more yards.
Brown is a three-down player, he can run, catch (86 career catches), and block and he welcomes physical contact, I’d love the Jets to pick him up as a UDFA and give him a chance to prove himself in camp.
WR - Tay Martin (Oklahoma State)
Martin is coming off an outstanding season for the Cowboys where he recorded 80 receptions for 1,046 yards and 10 touchdowns. I caught a couple of his games from 2021 and I’m surprised he’s being labeled as a UDFA by guys like Dane Brugler because he showed a ton of body control and possesses good length to go up and get the ball.
Tay does have some issues with drops, recording 22 over the course of his career and 10 during the 2021 season. He’s also extremely lean, at over 6 feet you’d want him to weigh more than the 184lbs that he checked in at, which could lead to problems against press coverage at the NFL level, he also only ran a 4.58 forty which is relatively poor for a receiver.
Saying all that, he has the production in his back pocket and he came down with 14 contested catches last year (53.8% success rate) and caught 67.8% of passes that came his way.
TE - Chase Allen (Iowa State)
I actually came across Chase Allen when I was watching Charlie Kolar, and I couldn’t help but feel a bit sorry for him. Allen in his own right is a very good player, but when you have a Charlie Kolar on your team it’s not easy to get the reps.
Standing at over 6’6 Allen is a good target all over the field, and his 1.62 10 yard split shows he has good acceleration off the line, athletically he’s actually a decent prospect, but he’s not the strongest man on the field (evidenced by 11 reps on the bench).
However, Allen does have some good production to his name, even if it’s not in the base numbers, after all he caught just 24 passes for 277 yards and 2 touchdowns last season. But he did catch 80% of the balls thrown his way and that’s a key indicator that volume was an issue in his production rather than his own skillset. Kolar got 95 targets, that’s a monopoly on the TE position.
Allen also had 0 drops on those 30 targets and caught 80% of his contested balls (4/5). Over the course of his career, he’s had a 6.5% drop rate and caught 60% of his contested balls (12/20) - Well worth a look as a UDFA.
OT - Austin Deculus (LSU)
Austin is an interesting prospect because he has some real positives, but severe limitations, hence why an LSU lineman who’s appeared in 61 games is making appearances on a list of potential UDFAs.
Deculus is a big man at 6’5 and 320lbs, and he has long limbs to keep rushers off his frame and away from the QB. In a phone booth, he has the playing strength to hold up against some of the stronger pass-rushers in the league.
Austin’s efficiency has improved each year with his pass-blocking efficiency topping out at 98.2% this year, the first time it’s been over 98%. He also allowed 0 sacks over 486 pass-blocking snaps, so there is something to work with.
The issue with Deculus is that he has limited athleticism, he struggles to move laterally and kick slide to block off the edge against pass-rushers, his lack of lower body drive also limits his effectiveness in the run game. I don’t see him as a fit for the Jets, but I do feel as though he’ll get a chance in camp due to his pedigree from a SEC powerhouse.
OG - William Dunkle (San Diego State)
Dunkle is a natural power player at RG and played over 2000 snaps at the position over the last three years. He plays to the whistle and sometimes can be too physical as evidenced by his 8 penalties in 2021.
I really like Dunkle’s attitude though, and while he’s not the most athletic guard in the draft he does pack a punch and he is a bit of a people mover in the run game, PFF gave him a 98.8 grade for run blocking and while he can get beat by a quick step he didn’t allow a single sack over his college career, that’s 0 sacks over 1000 pass-blocking snaps.
Technically he can improve with his hand usage and his footwork, but that’s what you pay coaches for. Dunkle is one of my favorite prospects as a UDFA to work with and I could see him fighting for a backup role in year one.
C - Doug Kramer (Illinois)
Kramer isn’t going to blow you away but he’s a high effort center who has a future in a zone dominant scheme. He’s a much better run blocker than pass protector because he’s lightning-quick off the snap and manages to stay square and get out to blocks with ease.
He can get knocked back in pass protection and he needs to work on his footwork to maintain balance but he’s a guy who has a lot of potential. He allowed 2 sacks last year but only 8 pressures total, that’s good for a 98.3% pass-blocking efficiency rate.
I actually really like the developmental side of Kramer because he’s highly athletic, the issue with him is that he oversells on every day and savvy defenders will wait for him to over-commit, which usually ends up with Kramer sprawled on the ground.
My top 5 Wide Receivers.
Ryan Moran posed the question on Jets X-Factor around if the Jets should draft an interior lineman. “The depth on the inside of the offensive line was addressed early in free agency with the re-signing of Dan Feeney. Greg Van Roten remains with the team as a veteran backup guard. At some point in the draft, the Jets could look for a developmental interior offensive lineman who can begin his career in a reserve role” - Ryan then goes onto list potential options in each round.
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