Each week, we'll give you a list of draft board risers, who improved their 2018 NFL draft stock with their performance from the weekend prior.
WR Cody Thompson, Toledo
Thompson is a big-framed wide receiver who has been tearing up the MAC since 2015. Thompson – a favorite of PFF analyst John Kosko – has continued to be highly productive for Toledo in 2017 and has more than 100 receiving yards in every game this season thus far. Thompson has 27 catches on 39 targets for 505 yards with 166 yards of that coming after the catch. The passer rating when targeting Thompson is 137.5.
OT Dejon Allen, Hawaii
Allen has played both guard and tackle productively for the Warriors over his career but is currently their left tackle. Allen has improved as a pass protector each year of his career and seen his pass blocking grade grow significantly since 2014. Thus far in 2017, Allen hasn’t surrendered a sack or QB hit and only three hurries on 157 pass blocking snaps. Allen’s pass blocking efficiency rating of 98.4 ranks No. 21 among FBS tackles with at least 100 pass blocking snaps. Allen will likely move back inside at the NFL level but he continues to improve and move up draft boards.
CB Blace Brown, Troy
Brown made some big-time plays for the Trojans’ defense in their upset win against LSU. He forced a fumble deep in his own territory which Troy recovered. Brown also sealed the victory with an interception. Brown has two interceptions and one pass break-up so far in 2017. His playmaking ability was evident last season when he had six interceptions and three pass break-ups. Through five games in 2017, Brown has allowed 13 catches on 20 targets for 192 yards with his lone touchdown surrendered against the talented Jaleel Scott of New Mexico State. Brown’s 7.2 cover snaps per target currently ranks No. 76 among FBS cornerbacks with at least 100 snaps in coverage.
Edge Da'Sean Downey, UMass
Downey is an intriguing front-seven prospect with length, athleticism and pass-rush ability. Downey now has four sacks, eight QB hits, seven hurries and one batted pass on his 139 pass-rush snaps in 2017. Last season, Downey had seven sacks, six QB hits and eight hurries on 194 pass-rush snaps. His pass-rushing productivity rating of 10.9 ranks him No. 9 among FBS 3-4 outside linebackers with at least 100 pass-rush snaps. Downey’s pass-rush production and ability to rush the passer from several different front-seven positions has him rising up the board.
LB Drew Lewis, Colorado
Thus far on the season, Lewis has a very impressive 86.8 run defense grade and his 19 run stops on his 162 run defense snaps ties him at No. 5 among FBS linebackers. Lewis currently has an 82.3 coverage grade and the passer rating when throwing into his coverage is only 69.8. He also has four QB hits and 14 hurries on his 49 pass-rush snaps, showing that he can be used in multiple ways. Lewis has a pass-rush productivity rating of 21.3 which ties him at No. 6 among FBS inside linebackers with at least 100 pass defense snaps.
S Justin Reid, Stanford
Reid is a versatile defender who can play deep on the back end of the defense but is largely used in the slot. Reid is only allowing 1.41 yards per coverage snap in the slot which ranks No. 16 among FBS defensive backs. He has also proven to be a playmaker for the Cardinal defense and has six total plays on the ball with three interceptions and three passes broken-up.