Thursday marks the beginning of one of the most exciting and publisized offseason events in all of sports. It's the NFL Draft. This draft class proves to be another dandy as talent abounds. Will your team get a guy who could change the course of the franchise forever? We'll see on Thursday night. Here is a list of the top available offensive prospects by position in this year's draft.
Top Prospect: Johnny Manziel, Texas A&M
Johnny Manziel. He's one of the most controversial figures in all of sports. He is known for both his dynamic play on the field and living it up off the field. Some look at Johnny and his style at Texas A&M and are hesitant to pull the trigger and take him because they view him as a high-risk player. That is true, but there is also even higher reward.
Manziel will live on as one of the greatest quarterbacks to ever play college football. He will be remembered for his uncanny escapibility, his ability to make things happen, and his fierce competitive nature. In his short career in College Station, TX, the man they call "Johnny Football" passed for 7,820 yards and 63 TDs. Manziel won the Heisman Trophy as a freshman and had what many believe was an even better season in 2013.
Manziel has a powerful arm, excellent quickness, and great awareness in the pocket. He can make all the NFL throws and has an accurate arm. His main question mark thrown at him is his small frame, but that doesn't seem to phase Manziel or hurt his play on the field. Manziel is truly box-office and a guy that you can build a team around to win a championship.
Honorable Mention: Blake Bortles, UCF
Top Prospect: Jeremy Hill, LSU
Hill was a very exciting back in college. In 2013, Jeremy Hill rushed for 1,401 yards and 16 TDs with a remarkable average of 6.9 yards per carry. Hill is known for being an explosive and powerful back who is difficult to bring down. Hill hits the hole quickly, has underrated breakaway speed, and has the ability to make people miss.
Hill spent his career running around and through tacklers in the rugged SEC. He is a back that is sure to have an impact on the next level. I compare him to a guy like Marshawn Lynch. He's a big back that is hard to stop. Hill will be a very solid rusher that a team can depend on to fight for extra yardage.
Honorable Mention: Carlos Hyde, Ohio State
Top Prospect: Sammy Watkins, Clemson
Watkins is a no-brainer. He should be drafted in the top ten. Watkins is one of the most dynamic receivers in this year's draft class. He had an oustanding career at Clemson including hauling in over a hundred catches, registered 1,464 receiving yards, and reached the endzone 12 times.
The 6-1, 211 lbs. draftee from Fort Myers, FL has all the skills to succeed in the NFL. Watkins has great hands and is extremely swift. He can take it the distance on any given play. Watkins is the ultimate weapon and will make one NFL team extremely happy on Thursday night.
Honorable Mention: Odell Beckham Jr, LSU
Top Prospect: Eric Ebron, North Carolina
Eric Ebron was certainly a major part of the North Carolina offense last season. He led his Tarheels squad in receiving with 943 yards and 6 scores. Ebron is athletic and a big prospect. He's 6-4, 245 lbs. and looks a little like a big wide receiver. He has good speed for his large frame, runs crisp routes, and is a great safety net for a quarterback.
Ebron is a guy that can be incorporated into any NFL offense and contribute in a similar way to guys like Jimmy Graham and Tony Gonzalez. The main difference is that Ebron might be faster. He's definitely a guy ready to come contribute on your team.
Honorable Mention: Arthur Lynch, UGA
Top OL Prospect: Greg Robinson, Auburn
Well, it's been one turnaround year on the Plains. From a losing season and all-time low for the program, to winning the SEC Title, Auburn has enjoyed much success. One huge reason for their success is having one of the best offensive lines in the nation headlined by OT Greg Robinson. The 6-5, 332 lbs. blocker from the state of Louisiana was one of the top offensive lineman in college football in 2013.
He was a big reason (no pun intended) that Auburn had so much success in the running game last season. Robinson is a tough run-blocker and imposes his will on defenders. Robinson is also quick enough to hold defenders coming off the edge. Offensive line is a very key position in the NFL and look for Robinson's name to be called in the first few minutes of the draft.
Honorable Mentions: OT Jake Matthews, Texas A&M; C Marcus Martin, USC; OG Zach Martin, Notre Dame; OG Gabe Jackson, Miss State
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