Bowl Game Watch List – Part 4 The Sugar Bowl

Sharrif Floyd – DT Florida
BOWL:Sugar Bowl Florida v Lousiville 1/2/13 2:00
Build: 6-3 303 lbs
Early Projection: Late 1st Round
Years Started: 2
Patriots Fit: 4-3 DT, 3-4 DE
Relevant Stats:

YEAR TACKLES SACKS TFL FF QB HURRIES
2012 15 A 26 UA 1 11 1 6

The general thinking is that Floyd will declare for the draft shortly after the Sugar Bowl. He’s got first round buzz working in his favor right now so it’s a solid possibility. One of the first things you notice about his play is that he gets double teamed a lot. Some teams doubled him on basically every single play. Florida wasn’t shy about moving him around the line to force difficult matchups. He played 5 technique, 3 technique and once in a while he’d be on the zero. I think if he does well in the Sugar Bowl and at the Combine then his versatility is going to drive his price tag up. An ideal situation in the pros would be to pair him with an elite veteran like Vince Wilfork, and make teams afraid to double either of them.

He’s not a finished product though. His consistency needs to improve. Way too often he gets turned sideways and just knocked right off the line of scrimmage. He’s also too willing to leave his feet. Still he’s gifted at getting in the backfield and making carefully drawn up X’s and O’s blocking schemes go to shit.

Matt Elam – SS Florida
BOWL:Sugar Bowl Florida v Lousiville 1/2/13 2:00
Build: 5-10 202 lbs
Early Projection: Late 1st Round
Years Started: 2
Patriots Fit: 4-3 DT, 3-4 DE
Relevant Stats:

YEAR TACKLES INTS TFL SACKS QB HURRIES
2012 16 A 49 UA 4 10 1 5

Another Florida junior who is expected to declare. This is going to sound weird at first, but I think Elam could go in the first round just as easily as he could go in the 7th. He’s a super athletic wrecking machine who can make plays all day long, but he’s also a loose cannon. He’s the kind of guys who can shut down a drive on one series, and then extend another with a late hit penalty. He’s got a habit of leaving his feet and leading with his helmet, and always trying to go for the knockout hit. Discipline is a must for Patriots DB’s or at least that’s the supposed Belichick mission statement. But that’s another rant for another time.

Still Florida head coach Will Muschamp knows how to coach high level safeties. He coached LaRon Landry at LSU, and Earl Thomas at Texas. Also, unlike 90% or so of college football safeties he can actually line up and cover someone, not just hover around in the secondary and put a chip shot on somebody after the linebackers do all the work. He’s one of the closest things to a complete safety you’re going to see in this class.

**SLEEPER PICK**

Adrian Bushell – CB Louisville
BOWL:Sugar Bowl Florida v Lousiville 1/2/13 2:00
Build: 5-11 184 lbs
Early Projection: Late Rounds
Years Started: 1
Patriots Fit: Nickel Corner
Relevant Stats:

YEAR TACKLES INTS PBU KICK RET RET YDS
2012 14 A 44 UA 1 11 17 333

I couldn’t find a single mock that had even one Louisville player slated to go in the first 3 rounds (they’re very young all over the roster). So here’s a curveball for you: Cardinals senior CB Adrian Bushell. At one point in time he was a 4 star high school recruit playing DB, wide receiver and running back with Rivals ranking him as one of the top 10 athletes in Texas. He gets recruited by Florida and then bounced after 2 seasons for being a slouch, not showing up for meetings, and getting in trouble off the field. He goes back to Texas for a year to play for a community college team and gets his act together enough to catch the attention of Charlie Strong in Louisville a whole time zone away.

With only 1 season to make something of himself Bushell managed an impressive 11 passes defended as a senior and helped Louisville go 10-2. The one time hopeless prospect will graduate school and get to play his final game as a college athlete against his old team. He’s a very underrated corner with good instincts, breaks well and plays aggressive.

Unfortunately for him Florida has only thrown the ball about 250 on the whole season, and if they want to throw it today they’d be advised to probably throw away from Bushell. They still have to deal with him on special teams as a gunner and a kick returner though. Keep this name tucked in your draft nerd notes.


Photo Credit Matt Wickham

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2 Responses to Bowl Game Watch List – Part 4 The Sugar Bowl

  1. Pat says:

    Just found your site from some random sports page. You made mention of Belichick’s “thick skull”. I said, “what does this guy know?”. I’m glad I came here. Awesome blog to read up on before the draft. Kudos. We can agree to disagree on BB, LOL. Keep it up.

    • My friend, you won’t find a bigger Belichick fan than me. He’s one of the most fascinating minds in the game, and as much as he boils my blood sometimes he’s got my full trust. In fact, at my old job I spent a year without a supervisor (ruled) and hung up a photo of BB on my cubicle so I’d have a leader present. But that man can be one of the most stubborn SOB’s on the planet in so many ways: the insistence on the 4 man pass rush, the fact that Josh Boyer still has a job as a Pats DB coach, etc. But when it comes down to it I couldn’t picture anyone else coaching this team.

      Thanks for the kind words on the site. I’m only warming up for this year’s draft. Lots of good prospects and I’ll be going through as many as I can. Feel free to check back, and add us on Facebook (www.facebook.com/patskrieg). Thanks again!

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