Thursday, February 21, 2013

Prospect Profile: ILB Manti Te'o - Notre Dame

Name:  Manti Malietau Louis Te'o
Height:  6'-2"
Weight:  255 lbs.
Class:  Senior
Hometown:  La'ie, HI
High School:  Honolulu Punahou 
Date of Birth:  January 26, 1991 (22 years old)

Fighting Irish Career

2012 Senior Year: One of the most decorated players in college football history....recipient of the Maxwell, Butkus, Nagurski, Defensive Player of the Year IMPACT Lott Award, Bednarik, Lombardi and Walter Camp Trophies....finished 2nd in Heisman voting.....started all 13 games, registering 113 total tackles (55 solo), 5.5 tackles for loss, 7 interceptions (led all FBS LBs), 11 passes defensed, 1.5 sacks, 4 QB hurries and 2 fumble recoveries.

2011 Junior Year: Named 2nd team AP All-American, Butkus and Lott Trophy finalist, winner of FBS Independent Defensive Player of the Year....finished the season with 128 tackles (62 solo), 13.5 tackles for loss, 5 sacks, 4 QB hurries, 2 passes defended and 1 forced fumble.

2010 Sophomore Year: Switched from outside LB to inside as Irish switched to 3-4 defense.....led the team in tackles with 133 (66 solo), 9.5 tackles for loss, 1 sack, 3 QB hurries, 3 passes defended and 1 forced fumble.

2009 Freshman Year: After playing in all three games into the season, made his first start against Purdue....63 tackles (29 solo), 5.5 tackles for loss, 1 sack, 1 QB hurry and 1 pass defensed....third most total tackles as a freshman in school history behind Bob Golic and Russ Browner.

2012 Senior Highlights

2011 Junior Highlights

+ Has the ideal size to play in any defensive scheme in the middle
+ Displays above average field awareness; instincts improved greatly his senior year
+ Plays fast on the field, diagnosing plays quickly
+ Every down LB who's good in pass coverage
+ Improved his quickness and lateral agility his senior season
+ Good ball skills and has a good feel for zone responsibilites in coverage
+ Above average strength to take on blockers against the run and generally effective shedding blocks
+ Downhill run defender plays really well inside the box, filling gaps in a hurry
+ Understands gap assignments and makes pre-snap adjustments on the fly
+ Natural leader who sets the tempo for the defense; intensity is contagious to teammates

- Questionable straight-line speed; 40 time could be pedestrian
- A bit stiff in the lower body and is not a quick twitch athlete
- Does not have elite measurables and won't test well at the Combine
- Bizzare situation with fake online girlfriend 

Player Comparison: LB Jerod Mayo - New England Patriots

Draft Analysis:
Manti Te'o had a very memorable season to end his collegiate career at Notre Dame, winning just about every post season accolade and coming second in the Heisman Trophy race.  After a forgettable National Championship game against Alabama, things went from bad to bizarre for Te'o.  The story of Te'o's dead girlfriend being a hoax and everything else that ensued afterwards has left a bit of a stain to his image.  His interview process at the Combine will be almost as important as his on-field test numbers.  Aside from the media circus that's marred his path to the draft, Te'o is a very talented football player.  His leadership and intensity on the field elevates the level of play of his teammates, which are all very important attributes when it comes to the position.  Te'o had a very dominant season, save for possibly two games (Stanford and Alabama).  He's shown to be a very reliable tackler with the ability to make the big hit without sacrificing position or technique.  His senior season he really improved in coverage.  Notre Dame's defense gave Te'o a lot more coverage responsibility and he did not disappoint.  He led all linebackers in the FBS in interceptions and only Fresno State's Phillip Thomas had more.  The biggest question marks for Te'o as a football player are his straight-line speed and agility. He's going to have to show that he can stay with speedy runningbacks on wheel routes out of the backfield at the next level.  He also needs to show that he can make plays isolated in space.  As much of a downfield player Te'o is, he was somewhat protected in the box.  He hasn't had to make many plays were he had to sink his hips, breakdown in space and make the tackle.  Going back to the two games in particular that I highlighted (Stanford and Alabama), his performances in those two games are either just two bad games for Te'o, or it could be looked at as a microcosm of some of Te'o's deficiencies that will hinder him at the next level.  In both of those games, he couldn't shed blocks, missed tackles and just looked average.  In my opinion, two games are too small of a sample to outweigh the eleven other games that were played.  The other big issue (or non-issue for me at least) is the online internet relationship he had with a fake girlfriend.  How teams  put weight on the situation will greatly determine Te'o's position on their draft boards.  Te'o's current draft value is anywhere from top 10 to the bottom of the first round.  One thing to keep in mind is that there are many teams that are in need of Mike linebackers, and there isn't a whole lot of talent in the draft or in free agency.  This could increase his value as the draft draws closer.

Raiders Outlook:
Early in the post-season process, there were arguments about whether or not Manti Te'o would be a good selection with the 3rd pick overall.  Its evident that MLB is one position of great need on the Raiders roster.  Many Raiders fans, possibly because of Rolando McClain's bust status, have been against drafting Te'o.  I think that things have changed since late December, early January.  He's no longer looked at as a sure-fire top 10 pick.  That's a mistake.  Like last year's LB stud Luke Kuechly, Te'o has a huge body of work where he's been productive.  Seeing him elevate his game this season by making necessary changes in the offseason said a lot about Te'o the football player.  He elevated a team that really had no business being in the National Championship game against Alabama.  It was embarrassingly obvious of difference in talent of the two teams.  As Te'o went, so did the Irish, which says a lot.  Te'o may be out of the question with the #3 overall pick, but if the Raiders can find a willing trade partner and drop down into the early teens, he's definitely worth a look.  He has the intangibles and leadership traits that the current regime values and though he won't have eye-popping workout numbers, his play on the field will make him a valuable commodity come draft day. Te'o isn't Rolando McClain....even if he ends up running a similar 40 time.  Te'o is a football player who has the work ethic and dedication to succeed.  I wouldn't put it past Te'o to use his offseason setbacks to fuel his fire in the NFL to make him a better player. Minus fake girlfriend, #5 wearing #55 to replace a bust would be a huge upgrade.

Combine Analysis

40 Yard Dash: 4.82 
Vertical: 33"
Broad Jump: 113"
3 Cone Drill: 7.13
20 Yard Shuttle: 4.27

Te'o didn't test well at the Combine, but he also didn't embarrass himself.  Where Te'o helped himself the most was by voluntarily stepping to the podium and taking part in the media press conference at Lucas Oil Field.  It wasn't a requirement, but he came off looking good and did what he could to repair his image.  On the field, Te'o looked like he was pressing a bit, maybe due to the pressures of the weekend, but you could tell that once he settled in, he looked better.  He promised to put on a better show at the Notre Dame Pro Day on March 26.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Prospect Profile: CB Blidi Wreh-Wilson - Connecticut

University of Connecticut Profile

Name:  Blidi Wreh-Wilson
Height:  6' - 2"
Weight:  190 lbs.
Class:  RS Senior
Hometown:  Edinboro, PA
Date of Birth: December 5th, 1989 (23 yrs old)
High School:  General McLane HS

Huskies Career:

2012 RS Senior Year: Played in and started 11 games...honored as the team's Most Valuable Player...named to the All-BIG EAST Second Team...recorded 47 tackles on the season...made seven tackles at Western Michigan (Sept.22), Rutgers (Oct. 6) and USF (Nov. 3)...had five tackles, a career-high four pass breakups and an interception in the end zone during the second overtime in a win at Louisville (Nov. 24)...made 39 starts in 46 career games...posted 181 career tackles and eight interceptions for 171 return yards and a pair of scores.

2011 RS Junior Year: Missed much of the season with a knee injury suffered in the Buffalo game (Sept. 24) ... missed the next five games and returned for the final three ... made a career-high nine tackles against Iowa State (Sept. 16) ... had seven tackles with an interception in win over Rutgers (Nov. 26).

2010 RS Sophomore Year: Started all 13 games for the Huskies at cornerback in 2010...had four interceptions on the season and returned two of them for touchdowns...his two interception returns for TDs ties a single-season best...named the BIG EAST Defensive Player of the Week for his game against Vanderbilt (Oct. 2) when he had a 44-yard interception return for a touchdown and returned a fumble for 24 yards...had a 46-yard interception return for a TD against Buffalo (Sept. 25)...had seven tackles in win against Pittsburgh (Nov. 11)...had seven tackles vs. Oklahoma (Jan. 1) in Tostitos Fiesta Bowl...had six tackles against Louisville (Oct. 23)...earned the Defensive Game Ball vs. Vanderbilt.

2009 RS Freshman Year: Gained great experience in first year of collegiate play with action in all 13 games and started nine games, including the final seven of the season....had 40 tackles with one interception...interception came in win vs. Louisville (Oct. 17)...also led the team with six pass breakups...had nine tackles vs. Cincinnati(Nov. 7) and six in win vs. Syracuse (Nov. 28).

2008 Freshman Year: Redshirted ... Named Defensive Scout Team Player of the Week before the Virginia (Sept. 13) and South Florida(Nov. 23) games ... Named the Special Team Scout Team Player of the Week before the North Carolina game (Oct. 4).

2012 RS Senior Highlights:

2011 RS Junior Highlights:

Strengths (+):

Good at locating the ball
Plays special teams
Great in zone
Good closing speed
Always looking to play the ball
Can tackle in space  
Showed improvement from 2011 to 2012 (overall)
Versatile; can play outside and in the slot
Shows up in the clutch (INT of Bridgewater in 3OT)  

Weaknesses (-):

Not overly physical
- Vertical might be a problem vs. bigger receivers and jump balls
- Seems to struggle in general against bigger receivers
- Tends to take poor angles against the run (did show some improvement in '12)
- Fails to wrap up the ball carrier on occasion
- Lack of physicality allows the inside routes to beat him

Raiders Outlook:
Every time I watch Wreh-Wilson I see a playmaker -- with him tipping passes or intercepting them.  That said there seems a group of people, Rob Rang among them, that question Wreh-Wilson's ability to play in man coverage situations.  I have to assume this is based on his overall lack of physical play for a corner of his size.  Despite that being a problem, that is definitely something that can be worked on once he reaches the pros. Spending more time in the weight room and being pushed by the coaches would help. I do agree with Rang that Wreh-Wilson's strengths are playing in a zone scheme, but the same instincts that make him excel there are evident in his man-to-man coverages.  The other problem is I have no idea if the coaches really wanted him doing much press coverage. 

The Raiders seem extremely likely to address the corner back position in both Free Agency and the Draft. I also believe that they are likely to draft multiple players they had the opportunity to coach during the Senior Bowl process.  Wreh-Wilson seems one of the likely candidates as he fills a position of need and others at the CB spot like Jamar Taylor and Desmond Trufant will likely be selected sometime between the Raiders first pick and their next one in the 3rd round.  I have seen Wreh-Wilson projected anywhere from the 2nd to the 4th round, but most seem to think he will go more towards the end of that broad spectrum. 

Mike Mayock Talks With Rich Eisen

Podcast:  Link

Raider Coaches Talk With Media (2/13/13)

Offensive Line Coach Tony Sporano: Link

Offensive Coordinator Greg Olson: Link

Special Teams Coordinator Bobby April: Link

Linebackers Coach Bob Sanders: Link

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Prospect Profile: CB Jordan Poyer - Oregon State

Name:  Jordan Poyer
Height:  6' - 0"
Weight:  182 lbs.
Class:  Senior
Hometown:  Astoria, OR
High School:  Astoria HS
Date of Birth: April 25, 1991 (21 yrs old)

Beavers Career:

2012 Senior Year: First Team All Pac-12 and Consensus First Team All-American....started all 12 games, registering 50 total tackles (33 solo), 5 tackles for loss, 7 pass breakups, 7 interceptions (for 122 yards and 1 TD) and 2 sacks.

2011 Junior Year: Second Team All Pac-12....started all 12 games, registering 57 total tackes (37 solo), 12 pass breakups, 4 interceptions (for 56 yards and 1 TD), 141 punt return yards (14.1 yard average) and 1 TD, 680 kick return yards (22.67 yard average).

2010 Sophomore Year: 2nd on the team with 1109 all-purpose yards....104 punt return yards (9.45 yd avg), 917 kick return yards (27.76 yd avg), 2 interceptions (65 yards and 1 TD)....registered 34 total tackles (22 solo), 4 pass breakups.

2009 Freshman Year: One of 8 true freshmen to play, playing in all 13 games....2nd on the team with 10 special team tackles....3 kickoff returns for 114 yards (38 yd avg), 11 total tackles (7 solo).

2012 Senior Highlights:

2011 Junior Highlights:

Strengths (+):
+ Physical cover corner with a mean streak
Very good ball skills with reliable hands
Good combination of instincts and sound technique
Intelligent football player with high football IQ....has pre-snap recognition
Fluid hips with a very smooth backpedal, has very quick change of direction ability
Strong in run support, heads up the field quickly in run defense, breaking off WR routes
Effective in both press coverage and in zone
Reads routes very well and has great anticipation
Value on special teams as both a gunner and a return man

Weaknesses (-):
- Hasn't displayed straight-line speed, recovery speed is questionable
Is susceptible to double moves
Needs to add some size to his slight frame
Wingspan and arm length don't match his height
Was cited for criminal trespassing prior to 2012 season

Player Comparison: CB Cortland Finnegan - St. Louis Rams

NFL Draft Outlook:
Jordan Poyer is one of the top cornerback prospects in the 2013 NFL Draft.  His physical play and feisty on-field demeanor resemble that of current Rams CB Cortland Finnegan.  Both players don't back down from a challenge.  Poyer, having been a former QB in high school, is a very smart player at the position.  He has the ability to read both the QB and WR, and is able to make a lot of plays base solely by his awareness.  He positions himself very well in pass coverage, making it hard for the WR to make easy catches.  Poyer has above average quickness and has great change of direction, but in order to be an effective CB at the next level, he needs to show teams that he has a second gear down the field.  His straight-line speed will be vital to his draft position.  Poyer had a great showing during Senior Bowl week.  Poyer's arrest for trespassing prior to the 2012 season should not affect his draft status.  Poyer currently projects in the 2nd round.

Raiders Outlook:
Realistically, the Raiders need 2 starting caliber CBs.  Bartell and Spencer were two bounce-back candidates who didn't pan out, and their futures with the team are uncertain.  Even if one or both players were brought back, neither player can be counted on to be a starting caliber CB next season.  Currently without a 2nd round pick, Jordan Poyer is not in draftable range for the Raiders.  Poyer, however, is the type of football player that fits Reggie McKenzie's mold.  He's extremely intelligent and is a natural leader....both things that the current roster needs desperately.  He can play in any coverage scheme and has the ability to make the necessary pre-snap alignment adjustments in the secondary.  He's also shown early in his college career that he can make an impact in the return game, on both kickoffs and punt returns.  If the Raiders can engineer a trade down and gain a 2nd round pick in the process, he should be one of the top targets to be drafted.  Poyer has the on-field production and talent to excel at the next level.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Prospect Profile: OT D.J. Fluker - Alabama

Alabama Profile:

Name:  Danny Lee Jesus "D.J." Fluker
Height:  6' - 5"  (Senior Bowl Meas.)
Weight:  355 lbs.  (Senior Bowl Meas.)
Class:  RJr.
Hometown:  Foley, AL (originally from New Orleans, LA...Katrina)
Date of Birth:  3/13/1991 (nearly 22 years old)
High School:  Foley HS / McGill-Toolen (Biloxi, MS)

Crimson Tide Career:

2012 (RJr. Season):  Started all 14 games at Right Tackle.  Walter Camp and AP 2nd Team All-American.  1st Team All-SEC by the Coaches.  Missed only 11 assignments in 728 snaps.  33 pancake blocks, 2nd on a highly talented Alabama OL, graded out at a weekly average of 89.4% for the season.  Allowed 4 sacks in 267 pass attempts.  Alabama offense was ranked 20th in rushing yards per game and 40th in total offense nationally.

2011 (RSo. Season):  Started all 13 games at Right Tackle.  Helped Alabama OL rank 16th in rushing yard per game, 20th in scoring offense, 31st in total offense and 26th in sacks allowed per game nationally.

2010 (RFr. Season):  Started 9 games at Right Tackle, played in 10 and missed 3 starts due to injury (groin).  Earned Freshman All-SEC honors by Coaches.  Alabama finished 29th in rushing yards per game nationally.

2009 (Fr. Season):  Reshirted

2012 Highlights (RJr. Season - #76 playing Right Tackle):

2011 Highlights (RSo. Season - #76 playing Right Tackle):

2010 Highlights (RFr. Season - #76 playing Right Tackle):

(+) Positives (+):
+  Absolutely massive frame
+  Ridiculous arm length (36-3/8" arm length, 87" wing span)
+  Uses his outstanding measurables to his advantage, extending into blocks early with a heavy punch and maintaining his center on defenders
+  Shows patience in pass pro when he doesn't leave himself vulnerable to the inside
+  Can cave a defensive line on down blocks, leaving huge cutback lanes
+  Dominant in the run game, if Fluker gets his hands inside and drives, it's usually over
+  Very good pocket awareness and stunt recognition
+  Has three years of starting experience in the SEC and has played on 2 National Championship Crimson Tide teams during his time in Tuscaloosa
+  Well coached, disciplined
+  Finishes blocks in the run game with a lot of pancakes
+  Dominant anchor in pass pro, rarely gets pushed back, if at all

(-) Negatives (-):
-  While his measurables are elite, his feet are relatively sluggish, and he compensates for his lack of quickness by using his extension
-  Not very athletic in space, may have to play Guard in the NFL
-  Susceptible to savvy pass rushers, will get beat by good technicians on the edge
-  Has a history with groin problems, missing time in 2010 and the Senior Bowl in January
-  Shows bend, but the stronger, faster defenders of the NFL will likely give him trouble
-  Played only Right Tackle in his SEC career, didn't give himself a chance to play some OG at the Senior Bowl due to an aggravated groin injury
-  Can get caught lunging in the run game, swim moves can beat him
-  Very slow down the line when blocking on the backside, gets little contact on reaches

NFL Analysis:
There was heavy hype following Fluker's RSo. season in 2012.  Many thought he'd be a Top 30 pick if he declared in 2012, but he chose to return and helped hold down the starboard side of one of the most dominant college Offensive Lines of the past decade.  The talk now is that some teams like Fluker well enough to draft him in the Top 20 picks.  Obviously, playing Right Tackle in the SEC would mean a natural transition to Right Tackle in the NFL, but some scouts believe that as an OG in a Power Blocking Scheme he could be a Carl Nicks type of presence.  Across the board, however, it's likely Fluker will go no later than the early 2nd.  There are concerns about his quickness and ability to hold down the right edge in the NFL.  Teams in a PBS, looking to run the ball more consistently, beating up opposing defensive lines, will give Fluker a good look at Right Tackle.  If RT doesn't work out, it seems like a relatively easy move inside to LG or RG, where, in a phone booth, Fluker could seriously dominate for a 10 to 12 years as road grader.

Outlook as a Raider:
Tough to see Oakland making a play for Fluker at No. 3 overall.  Like all of the prospects in the 15-50 range, Oakland will only be able to give a talented beast like Fluker a look in a trade down scenario, swapping 1st Round picks with a team in the 10 - 32 Overall range, or even with a gained 2nd Round pick in such a trade down.  With the Power Blocking Scheme back in play thanks to Greg Olson, Mike Brisiel at RG might be expendable...couple that with a need for better depth at Right Tackle and Left Guard and you've got the possibility of Fluker being a fit in the East Bay.  Likely, however, the Raiders will only look to grab Fluker if they're picking in the Top 10 of the 2nd Round after gaining such a pick in a trade down scenario...grabbing the most talented defensive player they can in the 1st.  Above all, the Raiders need to build more stability, depth and potential dominance on both sides of the line.  Look for Oakland to go heavy OL/DL in the 2013 Draft.

Combine Analysis

40 Yard Dash: 5.31
Bench: 21 reps
Vertical: N/A
Broad Jump: N/A
3 Cone Drill: N/A
20 Yard Shuttle: N/A
40 Yard Shuttle: N/A

Fluker is obviously banking on the obvious....he's a massive human being with dominant force in live action.  His 40 time at his size is about right, and wasn't the slowest by any means.  As for 21 reps, one could attribute to his incredibly long arms.   He's not built to be a piston like some of these 30" long guards with massive chests.  Pretty ho hum numbers all in all, so Fluker will have had to further distinguish himself in the interview room(s).

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Prospect Profile: DT Sylvester Williams - North Carolina

Name:  Sylvester Williams
Height:  6' - 3"
Weight:  313 lbs.
Class:  Senior
Hometown:  Jefferson City, MO
Date of Birth:  November 21, 1988 (24 years old)
High School:  Jefferson City HS

Tarheels Career:

2012 Senior Year:  2012 All-ACC First Team Media and Coaches....started all 13 games and had 42 tackles, 13.5 tackles for losses, 6 QB hurries and 6.0 sacks.

2011 Junior Year:  Finished with 54 tackles, 7.0 tackles for losses, 2.5 sacks, 5 QB hurries, 3 pass breakups, one forced fumble and one fumble recovery.  Started all 13 games.

2009-10 Coffeyville CC: Ranked a 4 star recruit coming out of Junior College, and's 12th best JUCO talent.  Recorded 52 tackles, 12.5 TFLs, 2 sacks and 5 blocked kicks in 2010.  Only played one year of high school football prior to JUCO ball.

2012 Senior Highlights:

2011 Junior Highlights:

+ Possesses raw strength and powerful lower body
Good pass rushing moves, including a good bull rush and excellent swim move
Displays a high motor, plays with intensity
Quick and agile feet
Uses his arms and hands well to disengage and make plays
Strong enough to hold his ground versus double teams
Team leader with good work ethic
Is a quick learner with upside, having only played football for 5 years

- Isn't consistently dominant
Doesn't always use his strength advantageously
Technique can get sloppy and pad level can get high, letting OL get into his chest
Needs to work on conditioning
Can get overly-aggressive shooting gaps and being exposed to cutbacks
Still very raw as a 24 year old rookie

Player Comparison: DT Geno Atkins - Cincinnati Bengals 

NFL Draft Outlook:
Sylvester Williams is a DT prospect who's stock has been ascending since the end of the college football season.  In a deep class of Defensive Tackles, Williams very well may be the best 3 technique prospect of the bunch.  Improving every year he was at Chapel Hill, he's still a neophyte when it comes to football, only having played for 5 seasons.  Williams came off an impressive first year after transferring from Coffeyville Community College, and played even better his senior season.  He dropped some weight and it showed on field, displaying quickness and agility to go with his already brute strength.  He has a very strong work ethic and is a quick learner, both traits that are positives for NFL teams to work with.  The problem Williams has is that though he has the power and strength to run over his opponent, he falls into stretches where he tries to out-finesse the competition.  Those are only minor and correctable issues.  Williams is currently projected in the late 1st to early 2nd round.  Don't be surprised to see him leapfrog more recognizable talents at the position come draft day.

Raiders Outlook:
Williams isn't a run stuffing DT like Star Lotulelei or Johnathan Hankins, and he also didn't have as impressive of a season as Sheldon Richardson.  However, Sylvester Williams is probably the best 1 gap, 3 technique defensive tackle in this draft.  He has very impressive burst off the snap and can create a problem for the interior of an offensive line.  Currently Williams doesn't project anywhere near any of the Raiders' draft picks.  He would be a huge reach at #3 Overall and won't be around when the Raiders pick again in the 3rd Round (currently).  If the Raiders find a trade-down partner on draft day, he would be a good fit inside as a 2nd Round pick.  He has the strength to hold the point of attack inside, but it's his disruptive play and his ability to get into the opponent's backfield that are his main strengths.  Williams' work ethic and drive to be a better player would be a welcomed addition to this roster.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Ninja Goro Covers the Raider's Defensive Salaries

Very Good Work.

Prospect Profile: OG Larry Warford - Kentucky

Name:  Larry Warford
Height:  6' - 3" (Senior Bowl #)
Weight:  333 lbs. (Senior Bowl #)
Class:  Senior
Hometown:  Richmond, KY (born in San Diego, CA)
Date of Birth:  6/18/1991 (21 years old)
High School:  Madison Central HS

Wildcat Career:

2012 Senior Season:  3rd Team AP All-American at OG, Consensus 2nd Team All-SEC.  Started all 12 games at RG, finishing off a career with 37 consecutive starts, while playing in 47 games overall as a 4 year player for UK.  Helped an embattled UK squad move the ball consistently, UK Running Backs gained 4.9 yds/carry on the season.  Began the season on Lombardi and Outland Trophy watch lists.

2011 Junior Season:  Consensus 2nd Team All-SEC selection.  Started every game for the Wildcats at RG.  Lead the team with 34 knockdowns and earned an 87.5% average for the season.  Was named to the Outland and Lombardi Trophy watch lists during the year as the Nation's best lineman.  Helped Kentucky beat rival Tennessee for the first time in 26 seasons.

2010 Sophomore Season:  Consensus 2nd Team All-SEC selection.  Started every game for UK at Right Guard.  Warford had 43 knockdown blocks on the season (team high) while helping UK to a 2nd best SEC finish in sacks allowed.  Blocked for Randall Cobb in a season where Cobb set the SEC's all-time single season mark for all-purpose yards (2,396).

2009 Freshman Season:  Named to Coach's SEC All-Freshman Team.  Played in 10 games for UK, mostly at Right Guard.

2012 Senior Season Highlights (#67 playing RG):

2011 Junior Season (#67 playing RG):

2010 Sophomore Season (#67 playing RG):

Positives (+):
+ Massive, thumping, mauling right guard prospect with Samoan blood
Adequate in pulls, uses his mass and creates running space quickly after impact in the hole
Consistently dominant in the Power run game, wins majority of one-on-ones
Excellent in pass pro, fills up a lot of space and has strong punch
Has one of the best anchors in college football, showed it off at Senior Bowl week, walling off Georgia's massive Nose Tackle John Jenkins numerous times
Uses his size like a bully, loves to lean into contact and maul whenever he can
Shows a decent ability to reach block, locking his hands inside and rotating his center to the strong side of the play, agile feet for a big man
Uses what arm length he has in pass pro very well, extends into pass rushers early and keeps them away from his body
Raises game to level of competition, had two of his better games vs. Florida's Sharrif Floyd and Mizzou's Sheldon Richardson

Negatives (-):
- Conditioning needs some work, while his mass is an asset, it works against him later in games
Limited athletically, can get lost in space chasing down defenders to block
Speedy inside rushers can give him trouble in pass pro
4 extensive years of SEC play leave a lot of wear on a body
Probably limited to Right Guard only in the NFL
Average at best in zone and stretch plays, struggles to keep up with defenders down the line

NFL Analysis:
A team looking for a mauling right guard in the NFL Draft need not look further than Warford.  He does Right Guard very well, but it's also likely that's all he'll offer to the NFL.  His draft stock has solidified into the late 2nd to the early 3rd Round after his solid week at the Senior Bowl in Mobile.  Warford demonstrates good overall game in a Power Blocking Scheme...he mauls in the run game and shows very good skills in pass pro for a man of his size.  Warford will likely be a mid to late Day 2 pick, but a team with a very specific RG need may go for him in the Top 50 picks.

Outlook as a Raider:
Barring a trade down, 2nd Round pick gained scenario, the Raiders likely have Larry Warford high on their Round 3 list.  Currently, the Raiders own the No. 66 Overall pick...a good spot to take a position of need.  What about Brisiel?  While Brisiel did just sign a 4 year contract, it's clear that in a Power scheme, of which Greg Olson is said to favor, Brisiel will be very average.  Brisiel is also coming off a 2011 with Houston in which he was battling a bad leg injury...and in 2012 with an ankle, an ankle he just had surgery on.  A guy like Warford would help solidify any flux at the RG position...either taking the RG spot altogether or forcing Tony Bergstrom, Lucas Nix or Mike Brisiel out, either positionally (Berg plays some LG and RT) or off the team entirely.