NFL Draft Cheat Sheet – Week 11

Clayton Smarslok with his weekly college football cheat sheet

The college season is winding down but there is still so much to be figured out. This week of games contains matchups that will dictate conference championships, bowl eligibility and maybe a player or two who will stand out to sit next to Tua Tagovailoa and Kyler Murray at the Heisman ceremony. If you need some help knowing what games or players to watch for this Saturday afternoon, look no further.

Week 10 Top Performers

Offense: HB Trayveon Williams, Texas A&M

There were some very good performances in week 10 but none stood out to me more than Trayveon Williams’. Against Auburn last week, he ran 17 times for 107 yards and two touchdowns. Not only that but he added another 75 yards on five catches with one more touchdown. So in total he had 181 yards and three touchdowns in 22 touches which may be his best game since the beginning of 2017. But it wasn’t just his numbers that stood out, Williams showed great vision in between the tackles as well as generating yards after contact. Listed at 5’9 200, he has the body type to be able to carry more than his fair share. If he can continue to keep up this type of effort, he can be someone to look for if you want a mid round running back.

Defense: IDL Quinnen Williams, Alabama

For so long Nick Bosa has been the top guy for many people, including myself, but Quinnen Williams might have a say in changing that. This performance against LSU has officially made him a household name. As an interior lineman he recorded 10 tackles, 2.5 sacks and an additional tackle for a loss. Those numbers don’t happen for interior linemen unless that players name is Aaron Donald and now apparently Quinnen Williams. He was a constant force for the middle of that LSU offensive line making it hard for them to do anything. Even if they tried to put two people on Williams he would still find his way to cause a disruption with his strength, technique, etc. With another big game this week against a very good interior offensive line and the playoffs coming up, his name will only get hotter.

 

Week 11 Players to Watch

RT David Edwards, Wisconsin (vs. Penn State, 12:00pm on ABC)

Offensive line is not the most exciting to watch, but for Jets fans you better get used to hearing these names during draft season. So if you want a head start watch this game once noon strikes. David Edwards is arguably the best offensive lineman on arguably the best offensive line in the nation. On his plate for the day is true sophomore Yetur Gross-Matos who has been hot of late. Gross-Matos is a freak at the defensive end spot who has NFL type speed coming off the edge. It will be great for Edwards to show that he can contain a speed rusher of his caliber and answer some questions in the process.

IDL Gerald Willis, Miami (vs. Georgia Tech, 7:00pm on ESPN2)

Willis is a player that has risen up after a disappointing start to his collegiate career. Having supposed to initially join my Florida Gators he is now a Miami Hurricane. In his redshirt Senior year he is an older prospect but at a position where players tend to age well, it isn’t as big of a deal. In this matchup against Georgia Tech he is going to have to use his high motor and athletic ability to keep up with this offense. The Yellow Jacket offense is far and away the top rushing attack in the nation who relies on it, having only thrown the ball THREE times in the last TWO games, all while averaging 43.5 points in those two games. This will be a good opportunity for Willis to showcase his lateral movement as he’ll be asked to quite a bit.

 

Week 11 Games to Watch

Northwestern at #21 Iowa (3:30pm on FOX)

This may not be the flashiest of games this week but there are certainly players that we can focus on. When Iowa is on offense there will be three players to watch in particular. Their two tight ends, Noah Fant and TJ Hockenson, are two of the best in the nation. They are the top two receivers for the Hawkeye offense as they both have at least 32 receptions, 450 yards and 4 touchdowns. One player tasked in stopping them is Northwestern linebacker, Paddy Fisher. He hasn’t stepped up like many were hoping this season, but in what might be his toughest game, as a coverage linebacker in particular, Fisher can get some believers with a good performance today. If you want someone to watch other side of the ball, it will be the Anthony Nelson show. Expect him to be getting after quarterback Clayton Thorson all game long off the edge.

#2 Clemson at #17 Boston College (8:00pm on ESPN)

Boston College can play spoilers at home today. A win will not only knock Clemson out of the top four for the time being but they could control their own destiny to win the Atlantic division in the ACC. It will undoubtedly be a tough task for the Eagles but not impossible. Boston College will need to rely on their offensive line to open up some holes for AJ Dillon, who happens to be the top rusher in the ACC. The physical runner will be running behind Chris Lindstrom who could be looking at a day one selection in April, but he will be lined up across the likes of Dexter Lawrence and Christian Wilkins. It will be tough to expect them to be held in check all game but if they can spring Dillon into the second level anything can happen.

The Eagles obviously need the running game to work but edge rushers Zach Allen and Wyatt Ray will need to make some plays on defense. Allen is more of the bigger, physical type whereas Ray is a little more athletic and smooth in space. If one of them can get past Mitch Hyatt and company to rattle Trevor Lawrence’s cage, they might just have a chance.

Weekly Rankings

Top 5 Interior Defensive Linemen

  1. Quinnen Williams, Alabama
  2. Ed Oliver, Houston
  3. Raekwon Davis, Alabama
  4. Rashan Gary, Michigan
  5. Dexter Lawrence, Clemson

 

 

*No Jeffery Simmons because of off field issues*