If you’ve spent any time looking through early projections for next year’s NFL draft, you’re already aware of a good number of the nation’s top NFL prospects.
But as is the case every year at this time, there are players in these early mock drafts that NFL scouts aren’t quite as high on as media projections. There are also several players that NFL scouts rate much higher than most likely realize.
Based on information from NFL scouting sources, we will identify some highly regarded early prospects that are not being talked about enough at this point. To start with, here are 10 offensive.
It’s no secret that Bret Bielema and Illinois have two NFL prospects coming their way defensive line, including a top two round prospect in Jer’Zhan Newton. However, Newton is not the only Illini player currently considered a possibility to be selected in the early rounds of next year’s draft. They have one on theirs offensive line also with Adams.
At least some scouts see the 6-foot-5, 315-pound Adams as one of the better NFL prospects among draft-eligible guards and as someone good enough to go in the first two or three rounds of next year’s draft. The former JUCO transfer had double-digit knockdowns in six games last season and was a third-team All-Big Ten selection. In addition to starting 12 games at guard, he also started one at left tackle.
Although it was Jermaine Burton who led Alabama in receptions and receiving yards last year, Brooks led the Tide with eight touchdown catches. The 6-foot-2, 195-pound Brooks has thrown a touchdown in six of Alabama’s last seven games against Power Five opponents, including each of the last four. The former five-star recruit also averaged a team-best 17.3 yards per carry. catch.
While Burton is considered more of an early to mid Day 3 prospect (fourth to sixth round type territory), Brooks is considered by at least some scouts as a legitimate early round option. “I think he’s pretty talented and really started to come on during the second half of the season last year,” an NFL scouting source told On3.
A TCU offensive lineman went in the first 40 picks of this year’s NFL Draft. It may also happen again next year. Scouts view Coleman as a top two round talent who might even end up in the first round conversation. The 6-foot-6, 315-pound Coleman switched to left tackle for TCU last year after playing guard in 2021. He was an honorable mention All-Big 12 selection.
Wake lost its leading receiver from last year, New Orleans Saints sixth-round pick AT Perry, but returns a receiver who could end up going for a decent amount earlier in the draft. After missing 2021 with an injury, Greene was second at Wake Forest last year with 642 receiving yards. He had multi-touchdown games against Clemson and North Carolina. For his career, the 6-foot-2, 210-pound Greene is averaging 18.6 yards per carry. catch. Current grades on him from scouts appear to be mostly in the third-to-fourth round.
It could end up being back-to-back years for Oklahoma with first-round offensive tackles. After Anton Harrison went in the first round this year, Guyton is now a legit first round prospect for next year. At least some scouts already have first-round grades on Guyton heading into the season despite making just five career starts as an offensive lineman.
The 6-foot-7, 310-pound Guyton transferred to the Sooners last year after two years at TCU. His lone start at TCU came as an H-back in 2021. During that 2021 season, he had a 6-yard touchdown catch against Iowa State. “He has all the skills in the world,” Oklahoma offensive line coach Bill Bedenbaugh said during the spring. “One of the most talented guys I’ve ever seen. And we’ve had some pretty talented guys come through here.”
Just three years after ranking outside the top 1,100 overall players in the 2020 recruiting class, McConkey may be the SEC’s second-best NFL draft prospect at wide receiver behind only LSU’s Malik Nabers. McConkey posted 58 catches for 762 yards last season with nine total touchdowns. The 6-foot, 185-pound McConkey is said to have been timed under 4.5 in the 40-yard dash at Georgia. He has also recorded a vertical jump of about 38 inches. “He’s probably going to be one of the best slot receivers in the draft,” an NFL scout told On3. “He’s small, but he’s more explosive than some of these traditional slot receivers who are quicker than quick. He is quick, but also quick and explosive. Love his body control. And he shows up every time you see him.”
Houston isn’t without some NFL-caliber talent as it makes the transition to the Big 12. At least some scouts see Paul as one of the top offensive tackle options for next year’s draft and as a first-round option. The 6-foot-7, 315-pound Paul was a first-team All-AAC left tackle for the Cougars the past two seasons, becoming the first Houston offensive lineman in 11 years to earn first-team all-conference recognition in back-to-back seasons. “He’s a pass-blocking monster,” a Power Five offensive line coach told On3. Paul’s brother, Chris, was a standout offensive lineman at Tulsa and now plays for the Washington Commanders.
An early heads up: Don’t be surprised if Pratt ends up going earlier in the draft than some bigger Power Five QBs currently touted as early options. Pratt led Tulane to a 10-win turnaround last season, guiding the Green Wave to a 12-2 record and a Cotton Bowl win over USC just one year after Tulane finished 2-10. The 6-foot-3, 220-pound Pratt had 27 passing touchdowns, 10 additional rushing scores and just five interceptions last season. That he goes at some point in the first three or four rounds of next year’s draft seems like a real possibility. “I love Michael Pratt,” an NFL scout told On3. “He’s big. He’s athletic. He’s ready. He’s got a good arm. He comes across as a really smart guy. He’s a stud. I wouldn’t be shocked if he’s a top-five QB.’ is.”
Sinnott, a product of the same hometown and high school in Iowa as Kansas State head coach Chris Klieman, has developed into a potential top three-round draft pick after first arriving in Manhattan as a walk-on. The 6-foot, 245-pound Sinnott, who has gained more than 30 pounds since joining the Wildcats in 2020, was a first-team All-Big 12 selection last season and was recently named a preseason second-team selection. -conference elections heading into the year. Sinnott finished last season with 31 catches, 447 receiving yards and four touchdowns. It was the most catches and receiving yards by a Kansas State tight end in 14 years. He also ranked fourth nationally among tight ends with a 14.4 yards per carry average. catch.
Williams may be USC’s top draft prospect on offense aside from its reigning Heisman Trophy winner at QB. The 5-foot-9, 185-pound Williams, who followed the aforementioned Caleb Williams from Oklahoma to USC, ranked third on the Trojans last season with 40 catches, 631 yards and five touchdown catches. “He’s small, but he’s got a rocket in his butt,” an NFL scouting source said.
Tahj Washington is another USC receiver with a better NFL draft than most probably realize. Washington, who posted 50 catches for 785 yards and six TDs for the Trojans last season, is considered in the NFL scouting world as an early-to-mid Day 3 type.