News & Analysis

Grading 2020 Senior Bowl invites

The Senior Bowl staff has been steadily rolling out their confirmed invitations over the past couple weeks, and we’ll be tracking what the PFF data has said about each heading into January. 

[Editor's Note: This article will be updated weekly on Tuesday to highlight the latest Senior Bowl invites.]

CB A.J. Green, Oklahoma State

Green has been a playmaker over the course of his career at Oklahoma State with 40 forced incompletions in three seasons as a starter. He’s also been picked on heavily in the Big 12, though, allowing over 1,600 yards and committing 28 penalties the last two and a half years.

TE Adam Trautman, Dayton

No PFF data available

LB Akeem Davis-Gaither, Appalachian State

Davis-Gaither is an explosive edge/off-ball hybrid for the Mountaineers. He’s rushed the passer 135 times this year and dropped into coverage 242 times. That’s sometimes a difficult role to project to the NFL, so the Senior Bowl will be huge for him. At a listed 215 pounds, Davis-Gaither will have to be an off-ball backer in the NFL.

OT Alex Taylor, South Carolina State

No PFF data available

Edge Alton Robinson, Syracuse

We had high hopes for Robinson heading in 2019, but his production has stagnated a bit this season. After earning an 89.8 pass-rushing grade last year, he’s dropped a bit to 87.3 this season. He’s a powerful man though who bullies college right tackles.

WR Antonio Gandy-Golden, Liberty

One of the most productive receivers in college football since the start of last season, Gandy-Golden ranks second in receiving yards over that span (2,270). He’s also broken 32 tackles on 134 catches, making him one of the more elusive prospects among the bigger receivers in the class.

S Ashtyn Davis, California

One of the highest-ranked players on the PFF draft board with a confirmed Senior Bowl invite, Davis has gone from track walk-on to rangy free safety. He earned an 89.3 coverage grade in 2018 and is at 76.4 so far in 2019.

OL Ben Barch, St. John's

No PFF data available

OL Ben Bredeson, Michigan

Bredeson has been one of the top pass-protecting guards in the country this season with only five hurries allowed on 327 pass-blocking snaps. He’s not an overly powerful player, but he's nimble and technically sound.

Edge Bradlee Anae, Utah

Anae is an absolute technician off the edge who has given some of the Pac-12’s best tackles – USC’s Austin Jackson and Washington’s Trey Adams – fits this year. Only Ohio State’s Chase Young and Michigan’s Josh Uche have higher pass-rushing grades than Anae’s 90.5 this season.

WR Brandon Aiyuk, Arizona State

With the ball in his hands, there are few more dangerous receivers in college football. After only 474 yards in 2018 in the shadow of N’Keal Harry, Aiyuk is outproducing the first-round wide receiver this year. He’s already racked up 60 catches for 1,125 yards and broken 13 tackles. He’s also averaging 34.0 yards per kick return and 15.7 yards per punt return with a touchdown this past week.

S Brandon Jones, Texas

Jones has seen his grades take a massive leap in 2019 by moving more to a slot role in the Texas defense. After earning a 46.7 overall grade last year, he’s at 76.0 this season.

S Brian Cole, Mississippi State

Us here at PFF and NFL scouts simply need to see more of Cole. He only played five games in 2018 before an injury cut his season short and now has 488 snaps in 2019. He’s allowed 427 yards this year on 49 targets and picked off one pass.

WR Bryan Edwards, South Carolina

With Deebo Samuel gone, Edwards has established himself as the guy for South Carolina this season. His 71 catches rank third among Power 5 receivers. Built like an ox, Edwards has had double-digit broken tackles each of the past three seasons. We love that he’s cut back on the drops this year with only three on 74 catchable.

TE Brycen Hopkins, Purdue

Hopkins is uber-talented with one fatal flaw: drops. He’s dropped 20 of 134 targets in his career with over a 10% drop rate every single season. He’s been the best downfield threat at the position, though, with 29 of his 79 catches the last two years coming 10-plus yards downfield.

Edge Carter Coughlin, Minnesota

Listed at 245, the weigh-in may be just as important for Coughlin as the practices in Mobile. He’s taken advantage of bad tackles with his athleticism the past two years but still has shown little in the way of power moves. After a slow start this year, he’s notched 27 pressures in his last four games.

WR Chase Claypool, Notre Dame

Claypool finally got his shot to be ‘the guy’ in Notre Dame’s offense this season, and he’s turned it on with 332 yards and five scores in his last three games. At his immense 6-foot-4, 227 pounds, Claypool ranks eighth nationally with 13 contested catches this season.

WR Collin Johnson, Texas

At 6-foot-6 and 220 pounds, Johnson is one of the most physically imposing receivers in the country. After gaining 985 yards in 2018 though, Johnson hasn’t taken the leap to domination as a senior. He’s only hauled in five of his 13 contested catch opportunities on the year.

OL Colton McKivitz, West Virginia

McKivitz has struggled to transition from right tackle in 2018, where he allowed only eight pressures all season, to left tackle this season — where he’s already allowed 14. Proving he’s settled into the new position will be big for him in the one-on-ones. 

Edge D.J. Wonnum, South Carolina

At 6-foot-5, 260 pounds, Wonnum has the size of an NFL edge defender, but he has not had the production. He’s only managed 21 pressures on 237 pass-rushing snaps this season for a 60.5 grade.

Edge Darrell Taylor, Tennessee

Taylor has an ideal edge build with a long, powerful frame. He works the long-arm very well although we’ve yet to see dominance from him. His 83.6 pass-rushing grade this year is a career-high.

LB Davion Taylor, Colorado

Taylor had a strong breakout campaign in 2018, where he broke up three passes and racked up 35 stops. This year, though, he’s been exposed a bit in coverage with already 501 yards allowed.

WR Denzel Mims, Baylor

Mims came onto the scene back in 2017 with a 61-catch, 1,087-yard season. After catching a case of the dropsies in 2018 that saw him drop 11 of 66 catchable, Mims is back to form with 57 catches, 888 yards and 11 scores so far this year. He’s been pumped targets in Baylor’s offense and has the fourth-most contested targets in the nation (15 catches on 34 attempts). He’s incredibly explosive, but his upright routes and limited tree are concerning.

WR Devin Duvernay, Texas

Duvernay has picked up the bulk of the targets Lil’jordan Humphrey left behind in the Texas offense. After gaining 546 yards on 65 targets last year, Duvernay already has 911 yards on 95 targets this season. His 21 broken tackles are the most in college football.

LB Evan Weaver, California

Weaver has been one of the most productive linebackers in the country over the past two years. He ranked second in the nation with 74 stops in 2018 and now leads the country this year with 59. He’s a limited athlete, though, and his 320 yards allowed in coverage this year are already more than he allowed all of last season (310).

LB Francis Bernard, Utah

Bernard started his college career at BYU before transferring to Utah. Over the course of his career, he’s been one of the better coverage linebackers in college football with a career 92.6 coverage grade across 766 snaps.

OT Hakeem Adeniji, Kansas

A four-year starter at left tackle, we’ve seen Adeniji’s pressures allowed decrease every year of his career. He took his lumps en route to 39 pressures as a freshman, but then allowed only 21 as a sophomore, 15 as a junior and now five this season.

TE Harrison Bryant, Florida Atlantic

Since the start of 2017, no one has been more productive at the tight end position in college football than Bryant. His 1,780 yards are 270 more than any other tight end over that span. Bryant is undersized, though, and not overly athletic for a smaller tight end. 

Edge Jabari Zuniga, Florida

Zuniga is incredibly explosive and has proven versatile lining up all over the Florida defensive line. His SEC vs. non-SEC splits are very concerning, though. Zuniga has earned a 91.4 pass-rushing grade on 159 snaps against non-SEC teams the past two years, while earning only a 58.4 grade on 264 snaps in SEC play.  

DB Jared Mayden, Alabama

Mayden has been primarily the box safety for the Crimson Tide this season. He’d played all of 318 snaps prior to this season but has shown out in his first year as a starter. On 30 targets, he’s allowed only 17 catches for 152 yards and a passer rating of 41.9.

TE Jared Pinkney, Vanderbilt

Pinkney had a monster 2018 that saw him haul in 50 balls for 770 yards and break nine tackles. He showed terrific route running and ability to adjust to off-target throws. This year hasn’t gone nearly as planned, with only 15 catches on 35 targets for 157 yards on the year. 

DI Jason Strowbridge, North Carolina

Strowbridge has been a consistently solid run defender for the Tarheels, with run-defense grades of 77.5, 78.2 and now 79.9 in his three years as a starter. Unfortunately, we’ve yet to see any flashes as a pass-rusher, with only one game in his career earning a pass-rushing grade over 75.0.

DI Javon Kinlaw, South Carolina

Kinlaw had the highest pass-rushing grade of any returning interior player in 2018 (88.7). He’s taken his game up a notch in 2019 with a 90.2 pass-rushing grade and 30 pressures on 273 pass-rushes so far.

CB Jeff Gladney, TCU

Gladney has been one of the few stingy Big 12 corners over the course of his career. With legit 4.3 speed, he rarely gets beaten deep. On 71 targets of 10-plus yards downfield the past two seasons, he’s allowed only 18 catches while breaking up an FBS leading 21 passes.

S Jeremy Chinn, Southern Illinois

Chinnis the one non-FBS invite that we have at least limited data on so far this season. On 374 snaps against FBS schools in his career (about half a season's worth), Chinn has allowed 14-of-26 targets for 197 yards with three touchdowns, two picks and six pass breakups. 

IOL John Simpson, Clemson

Simpson has seen playing time for the Tigers ever since his freshman year in 2016, but he has only been a full-time starter since last season. All but 26 of his 1,819 career snaps have come at left guard. He’s earned a career-high 75.1 run-blocking grade this season and has allowed eight pressures across 277 pass-blocking snaps.

Edge Jonathan Greenard, Florida

Greenard has been one of the biggest breakout players in the country this season, with a 90.8 overall grade after a previous career-high of 76.4. The Louisville transfer is still a tad limited athletically and has struggled to win the edge against better tackles.

LB Jordyn Brooks, Texas Tech

Brooks has been exceptional this season, with a 92.3 run defense grade and 53 stops on the year. He’s one of the surest tackling linebackers in the country, with only 12 misses on 191 attempts the past two years.

TE Josiah Deguara, Cincinnati

Deguara’s biggest highlight this season came tracking down a would-be pick-six in Cincinnati’s Week 1 win over UCLA. He’s gone over 400 yards in back-to-back seasons now for the Bearcats and has H-back type potential in the NFL at 6-foot-3, 242 pounds.

OL Josh Jones, Houston

Jones is currently the highest graded draft-eligible lineman in the country. If he finishes with his 93.1 overall grade, it will be the highest we’ve ever seen from a Group of Five offensive lineman in our six years of grading. He’s got all the length and athleticism to stay at tackle in the NFL, so the Senior Bowl will be massive for his evaluation.

S Josh Metellus, Michigan

Metellus has been a consistently productive safety in his three years as a starter at Michigan. He’s earned coverage grades of 78.2, 75.9 and now 73.7 in those three years. He’s also tackled very well over that span, with 16 career misses on 162 attempts.

Edge Josh Uche, Michigan

Uche has picked up right where Chase Winovich left off last year, with a 90.3 pass-rushing grade this season. He’s another player who will need to prove he can get to around 250 pounds and still rush the passer well in Mobile. With only a 69.7 run defense grade, he may be seen only as a designated pass-rusher or an off-ball linebacker in the NFL.

S Julian Blackmon, Utah

Blackmon was a starting corner for two seasons in Utah before switching to safety this year. The switch has done wonders for him, as he’s seen his coverage grade jump from 66.9 in 2018 to 88.2 this year. He’s been a very sure tackler over his career as well with only 18 misses on 160 attempts.

S K’Von Wallace, Clemson

While listed as a safety, he’s been just as much the slot corner for Clemson’s defense, with half his snaps coming there this season. In three years of starting, he’s earned coverage grades of 82.4, 79.7 and 76.5.

WR Kalija Lipscomb, Vanderbilt

Lipscomb is more screen weapon than true receiver in Vandy’s offense. He has 17 broken tackles on 31 catches this year, but has hauled in only 6-of-27 targets coming 10-plus yards downfield.

LB Kamal Martin, Minnesota

Martin is a terrific athlete who frequently plays the overhang role in the Gophers' defense. He’s battled injuries this year, though, and has only played 315 snaps.

RB Ke’Shawn Vaughn, Vanderbilt

Vaughn is the definition of a one-cut runner, with rushing grades over 80.0 each of the past two years. He’s also proven to be excellent in the passing game this season. He’s hauled in all 24 of his targets and broken eight tackles after the catch.

Edge Khalid Kareem, Notre Dame

Kareem has the NFL body at 6-foot-4, 265 pounds that every scheme can use. He’s as comfortable rushing on the interior, as he is off the edge and is known for his bull-rush. He’s in the midst of his second consecutive season with a pass-rushing grade over 80.0.

CB Kindle Vildor, Georgia Southern

Vildor put his name on the map with an absurd performance against Clemson last season where he picked off a pass and broke up two others. He’s allowed only 126 yards so far this season on 15-of-24 targets.

S Kyle Dugger, Lenoir-Rhyne

No PFF data available

RB Lamical Perrine, Florida

Perrine has been solid over the course of his career at Florida, although not particularly elusive. His 0.14 broken tackles per attempt rate ranks 240th in the country since the start of 2018.

DL Larrell Murchison, North Carolina State

Listed at 291 pounds, Murchison has a big opportunity to prove he’s been used out of position at NC State this year. He’s played more edge than defensive tackle for the Wolfpack, and his pass-rushing has suffered because of it (65.8 pass-rushing grade).

DI Leki Fotu, Utah

Fotu is a horse of a defensive tackle at 6-foot-5, 335 pounds. He showed more as a pass-rusher in 2018 when he racked up 35 pressures (only 13 so far this year), but he will be coveted as a run-stuffing nose tackle at the next level.

OL Logan Stenberg, Kentucky

Stenberg is one of the nastiest offensive linemen in the country and also one of the best pass protectors. On 247 pass-blocking snaps this year, he’s allowed only one pressure. We have to bring up his penalty problem, though, as he has 20 since the start of 2018.

LB Logan Wilson, Wyoming

Wilson has been starting for the Cowboys ever since his freshman year back in 2016. He’s amassed 3,425 snaps so far in his career. In the past three seasons, his production has been off the charts with 80.0-plus overall grades in each. This year, he’s earned a 90.6 run-defense grade, 87.3 pass-rushing grade and 81.9 coverage grade.

Edge Marlon Davidson, Auburn

Davidson has taken a massive leap forward this season to become one of the top pass-rushers in the country. After collecting 34 pressures on 376 pass-rushing snaps last year, he has the same amount of pressures on only 264 pass-rushing snaps this season. At 278 pounds, he has the versatility to rush from just about anywhere.

OT Matthew Peart, Connecticut

Peart has been quietly one of the best offensive tackles in the country this season, with an 88.9 overall grade. At 6-foot-7 and 301 pounds, he checks all the size boxes, as well. On 322 pass-blocking snaps this year, he’s allowed only four pressures.

WR Michael Pittman Jr., USC

Pittman possesses one of the most impressive catch radii in the entire country, as well as some of the best hands. He has only three drops on 144 catchable passes in his entire college career.

DI Neville Gallimore, Oklahoma

Gallimore has taken one of the biggest leaps of any defensive tackle in the country this year. After playing 2018 in the 330s, Gallimore shed around 30 pounds to be more of a penetrator on the nose this year. The result has been a 90.2 run defense grade and 87.4 pass-rushing grade so far.

OT Prince Tega Wanogho, Auburn

Wanogho is an interesting projection, as he never played offensive line until he stepped foot on Auburn’s campus. He’s not the most fleet of foot, but he's allowed only 22 pressures on 701 pass-blocking snaps since the start of last year.

OL Robert Hunt, Louisiana-Lafayette

Hunt is another four-year starter who has been dominant this year for the Ragin’ Cajuns. On 196 pass-blocking snaps, he’s allowed only two pressures. While the level of competition is obviously a concern, he didn’t allow a single pressure on 46 pass-blocking snaps against Mississippi State in Week 1.

DI Robert Windsor, Penn State

Windsor has flashed at times as a pass-rusher this season with a career-high six pressures against Iowa in Week 7. He’s seen his pass-rushing grade increase every single year of his career and is at 81.2 this season. Windsor is a tad slight at his listed 295, but he has still been a threat with the bull-rush against opposing guards. His best position at the next level looks to be a three-tech role.

IOL Shane Lemieux, Oregon

Lemieux joins Calvin Throckmorton as yet another four-year starter on the Ducks offensive line. He’s been similarly impressive over the course of his career, as he’s averaged fewer than a pressure per game over the past three years. He’s a bit stiff, though, and can get protected by Oregon’s scheme so holding up in the one-on-ones will be big for his eval.

OT Terence Steele, Texas Tech

Another four-year starter, Steele has steadily been trending upward in his career. His run-blocking grades haven’t been on the level of some other linemen invited, though, with a single season-high of 69.6 in 2018.

S Terrell Burgess, Utah

Burgess had played all of 385 snaps prior to this season but quickly put his name on the NFL’s radar. He collected three pass breakups in a monster game against Washington State in Week 5 and currently owns the third-highest coverage grade of any safety (90.2).

IOL Tremayne Anchrum, Clemson

Anchrum projects inside at the next level, but he’s yet to play a single down inside at Clemson. All 2,270 of his snaps have come at tackle, as he’s been the full-time starter at right tackle the past two seasons. Anchrum has allowed all of six pressures on 305 pass-blocking snaps this year, including zero against fellow Senior Bowl invitee Alton Robinson.

Edge Trevon Hill, Miami

Hill played three seasons at Virginia Tech before leaving the team early on in 2018 then transferring to Miami for his final season. He’s got length and bend but has run hot and cold as a pass-rusher. On 171 pass-rushing snaps this season, he’s managed only 20 pressures and a 72.4 pass-rushing grade.

LB Troy Dye, Oregon

Dye is one of the smoothest coverage linebackers you’ll see across the country and has been producing at the heart of Oregon’s defense for four straight seasons. He racked up over 50 stops in both 2017 and 2018 and has earned a coverage grade over 70.0 all four seasons.

RB Zack Moss, Utah

Moss is in the conversation for the most difficult running back to tackle in the country. He’s broken 61 tackles on only 154 carries this season. That 0.4 forced missed tackle rate per attempt is the third highest in the country for backs with at least 100 carries.

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