Week 5 of the college football has come and gone, it’s time to look back and see who helped or hurt their draft stock with their performance.
This past weekend in college football seemed like a waiting game. Fans waited with baited breath for the critical Ohio State-Penn State and Stanford-Notre Dame games to get going. The Big Ten showdown lived up to the hype with the Buckeyes prevailing late despite not having potential No. 1 NFL Draft pick, Nick Bosa who is out indefinitely after undergoing abdominal surgery.
For NFL draft fans, you may already be looking at next year’s crop of prospects if you’re team is off to a tough start (looking at you Arizona). Let us dive into the best and worst performances by draft prospects with the biggest name in the Stanford-Notre Dame clash.
Bryce Love, RB, Stanford – Stock Down
The talented running back, and 2017 Heisman finalist was supposed to be the catalyst for the Stanford Cardinal offense. Instead, it has been tough sledding for Bryce Love. Entering the season as the betting favorite for the Heisman comes with lofty expectations. Love simply has failed to meet those while battling injuries.
He left Saturday’s game with another ankle injury, not helping his cause. Even before the injury he only had 73 yards on 17 carries. Notre Dame is a talented front but Love needs better production than that. He’s only averaging four yards per carry, down from over eight in 2017. Love needs to get healthy and put up some big performances to keep his RB1 dream alive.
Daniel Jones, QB, Duke – Stock Up
Entering the season there were a few quarterbacks stealing the eyes of NFL scouts with their traits. One of those was Duke quarterback Daniel Jones. Unfortunately, a broken collarbone has sidelined Jones for the past three weeks. In an unheard of move, he returned to action this weekend against Virginia Tech.
Statistically, it did not look like an NFL stat line for the quarterback but on tape, it showed why scouts are intrigued. Jones clearly has big-league size. He showed off a talented arm as well. Keep an eye on Jones throughout the process, teams will fall in love with these type of players.
Bryan Edwards/Deebo Samuel, WR, South Carolina – Stock Down
The South Carolina Gamecocks featured two receivers that were being touted as big-time NFL prospects. Deebo Samuel was the household name that everyone knew. His teammate Bryan Edwards had better traits for the Sunday game. Both were pegged as top-100 picks entering the season.
After a bad start, and a rough Week 5, that idea of two top-100 receivers is taking a hit. In a loss to Kentucky, the talented duo combined for 86 yards on 5 catches, with 61 of those attributed to Samuel. Quarterback Jake Bentley is not helping matters. These two will continue to be on the radar, they are too talented not to be. However until they get better quarterback play, we will be waiting until testing time to see how they stack up against the rest of this loaded receiver class.
Josh Allen, EDGE, Kentucky – Stock up
Last season there was a highly debated draft prospect named Josh Allen. The now starting quarterback for the Buffalo Bills was a controversial player throughout the entire draft process. For the 2019 NFL Draft, it looks like we will have another Josh Allen to argue about. The edge rusher for Kentucky has been discussed as a first round player since the “too early 2019 mock drafts” have come out.
This week might have been his coming out party. He is the defensive star for the Wildcats and finished with an impressive four tackles for loss and three sacks against a tough Mississippi State offensive line. Allen’s athletic traits will push the narrative of a top-50 player, games like this will only help.
Zach Allen, EDGE, Boston College – Stock Up
Another edge rusher named Allen caps this list off. Zach Allen of Boston College was a defensive lineman that has received top-50 buzz coming off a strong junior season opposite Harold Landry. Now Allen is out of Landry’s massive shadow and dominating. This week against Temple Allen was a one-man wrecking crew. He matched fellow Allen with four tackles for loss, nabbed two sacks and even has two pass deflections on the day.
His athletic profile may limit the upside as a true edge rusher but he will find a home in the NFL with his play style. This is a loaded defensive line crew but Allen should not get lost in the shuffle with more games like that.