The Detroit Lions 2015 NFL Draft Watch List gives you college football players to watch each week who could be on the Detroit Lions’ radar next spring, with a particular focus on positions of need.
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Wisconsin (#16) vs. Iowa
3:30 p.m. EST – ABC/ESPN 2
Carl Davis (#71), DT – Iowa
Carl Davis, a 6-5, 315 lb. senior defensive tackle, was named second team All-Big Ten by league coaches in 2013 following a season in which he put up 42 tackles, four tackles for loss, one and half sacks, and one pass defended. As for this season, so far he has 26 tackles, five and half tackles for loss, and one sack under his belt.
Davis is very athletic for a big man and moves quite well for his size. He can handle double teams and has strong hands to control blocks on contact. His excellent size and the fact he’s a local product (he attended Sterling Heights Stevenson HS) could make him an interesting prospect for the Detroit Lions.
Jan 1, 2014; Tampa, Fl, USA; Iowa Hawkeyes offensive linesman Brandon Scherff (68) blocks against the LSU Tigers during the first half at Raymond James Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Brandon Scherff (#68), OT – Iowa
Brandon Scherff, a senior offensive lineman for the Hawkeyes, received the team’s Roy. J. Carver Offensive Most Valuable Player and Team Hustle awards last season. The 6-5, 320 lb. left tackle is also a 2014 Lombardi Award semifinalist. Scherff is a natural bender with good hand technique. He utilizes lower body strength and leverage to consistently create movement off the LOS versus a head up defender. He is a better run blocker than pass blocker, but utilizes hand placement and powerful upper body strength to control defenders once he locks on.
Scherff is natural on the move, with the agility and body control to break down and hit second level targets. He has smooth movement, but is a bit stiff in the hips and can struggle re-directing to counter against quick inside moves. He can drop his base and hold his ground versus the bull rush. He is a versatile player, having lined up as both guard and tackle throughout his career. Scherff may be a better fit on the right side.
Warren Herring (#45), DT – Wisconsin
Having spent the majority of the season sidelined after recovering from knee surgery, Herring is quickly working to get back to his old pace. Last season the 6-3, 294 lb. nose guard had 17 tackles, six tackles for loss, four sacks, and one QB hurry. In the five games he’s played in this season, he has ten tackles, one tackle for loss, one QB hurry, and one forced fumble.
Despite lacking quickness and speed to be an effective pass rusher, he showcases the strength to effectively serve in rotation as a “nose”. Herring is capable of stacking and occupying double teams at the POA.
Nov 1, 2014; Piscataway, NJ, USA; Wisconsin Badgers running back Melvin Gordon (25) runs through Rutgers Scarlet Knights during the third quarter at High Points Solutions Stadium. Wisconsin Badgers defeat the Rutgers Scarlet Knights 37-0. Mandatory Credit: Jim O
Melvin Gordon (#25), RB – Wisconsin
While it’s unlikely the Lions would take a running back this high, Gordon is too highlight-worthy not to mention for this game. Scouts have had their eye on Gordon since last year, but Gordon burst onto the scene last weekend when he broke the FBS single game rushing record with 408 yards against Nebraska. Gordon surpassed the old mark of 406, which was set by LaDainian Tomlinson, in the third quarter of the game.
The 6-1, 213 lb. running back boasts adequate size, however RBs with similar high cut frames have been susceptible to injury as they tend to run upright, exposing their frame. Similar in style to Jamal Charles, he is a gliding runner with exceptional flexibility and body control. Gordon has good vision, is instinctive, works off blocks well, and has outstanding acceleration. When the hole opens he sticks his foot in the ground and punches through with the speed to separate from second level defenders. He fights hard for yards after contact. The Lions would be remiss to not give a player of his caliber a second-look, regardless of need.