2013 NFL Draft - Centers

CollegeFootballNews.com
Posted Apr 14, 2013


From a college football perspective, the analysis of the top center prospects.

2013 NFL Draft Position Rankings

Centers


By Pete Fiutak
Follow Us ... @ColFootballNews 

- 2012 Center Prospects & Rankings
- 2013 NFL Quarterback Rankings
- 2013 NFL Running Back Rankings
- 2013 NFL Offensive Tackle Rankings
- 2013 NFL Offensive Guard Rankings

2014 Top C Prospects
1. Gabe Ikard, Oklahoma (OG)
2. Tyler Larsen, Utah State
3. Weston Richburg, Colorado State
4. David Andrews, Georgia (Jr.)
5. Travis Swanson, Arkansas
6. Bryan Stork, Florida State
7. Zac Kerin, Toledo
8. Russell Bodine, North Carolina (Jr.)
9. Reese Dismukes, Auburn (Jr.)
10. Andrew Miller, Virginia Tech
11. Dillon Day, Miss St (Jr.)
12. Jonotthan Harrison, Florida
13. Hroniss Grasu, Oregon (Jr.)
14. Mike Marboe, Idaho (Jr.)
15. Dillon Farrell, New Mexico
 
2012 CFN Prospect Rankings & Breakdowns
- QBs | RBs | WRs | TEs
- Cs | OTs | OGs | DTs
- ILBs | OLBs | CBs | Ss

2011 CFN Prospect Rankings & Breakdowns
- QBs | RBs | FBs | WRs
- TEs | OTs | OGs | Cs 
- OLBs | ILBs | DTs | DEs
- CBs | Ss  

2010 CFN Position Rankings & Analysis

- QBs | RBs | WRs | TEs
- Cs | OTs | OGs | DEs
- DTs | ILBs | OLBs
- Ss | CBs
This Class Is … terrific up top. Wisconsin’s Travis Frederick, USC’s Khaled Holmes, Alabama’s Barrett Jones and Cal’s Brian Schwenke are all ready to start right out of the box at either guard or center, and versatility is the norm across the board. Almost all of the top prospects are around 6-3 and 310 pounds, and then it all comes down to athleticism. It’s a strong position this year, and while Frederick is the best on the lot and Jones will be drafted in the top 50 because of his name and versatility, it’s a buyer’s market.

The Best Value Pick Will Be … Joe Madsen, West Virginia
Most Underrated … Khaled Holmes, USC
Most Overrated … Barrett Jones, Alabama
The Deep, Deep Sleeper Is … Scott Dearwester, Findlay

1. Travis Frederick, Wisconsin (Jr.) 6-4, 312
A typical Badger offensive linemen, he’s a very big, strong run blocker who flattens his man and keeps on rolling. Versatile, he could turn out to be a more natural guard in time, but he’ll start out at center where he’ll be fine for any scheme and any type, even though the foot-speed and quickness are sorely lacking. He has worked hard to transform his body a bit, dropping roughly 20 pounds but maintaining his strength and power. Even so, he’ll need to work a bit on his consistency – if he starts to do everything right and can get lower and underneath the pads a bit more, he’ll be truly dominant.
CFN Projection: Second Round

2. Khaled Holmes, USC 6-3, 302
Very smart, very quick and with a great frame, he has the basics to go along with terrific talent. While he’ll be best when he gets to use his quickness and could be pigeonholed as a zone blocker, there’s upside If he’s able to hit the weights hard and get functionally stronger. He might not be a Pro Bowl talent right away, but he’s certainly a starter right out of the box at center with the potential to slide over to guard if needed. Once he improves his bulk a bit and gets more powerful, the ceiling could be limitless.
CFN Projection: Third Round

3. Barrett Jones, Alabama 6-4, 306
Not only versatile – winning the Outland at tackle, working at center and potentially moving to guard in the pros – he’s a consummate leader and the main man and the leader behind some of the best lines in recent college football history. Tough as nails, he played hurt through some of the biggest games at the end of last year using his technique and wily skills to get by. A true quarterback up front, he’ll be the one the veterans follow from the moment he sets foot on a field. Every coaching staff will want him for his intangibles, he doesn’t have elite NFL tools without the strength or quickness to become a dominator. Yeah, he was great, but an argument could be made that he was the fifth-best pro prospect on the 2012 Tide line. He’ll start for a long, long time, but he’s too limited to play up to his legendary college status. He’ll be slightly overdrafted on reputation.
CFN Projection: Second Round

4. Brian Schwenke, California 6-3, 314
A fantastic athlete, he moves extremely well for a 300-plus pound center with the potential to work at guard without a problem. Easily one of the quickest centers in the draft, he fires out in a hurry and is in a bad mood when he gets there – he’s not afraid to mix it up and come up with the big hit. The technique isn’t a question and he knows how to handle a line, but he needs to transform his body by hitting the weight room hard, needing to become functionally stronger. A good all-around blocker whose plusses far, far outweigh the minuses, he shouldn’t have a problem starting somewhere in the interior right away.
CFN Projection: Third Round

5. T.J. Johnson, South Carolina 6-4, 310
Part center, part guard, he can be used in a variety of ways and at the very least become someone’s versatile backup in the interior. With fantastic size for a center, he’s able to overwhelm tackles with tremendous functional and weight room strength. A pure power blocker, he’s not for a zone-blocking scheme and isn’t going to move all that well, but get him in a phone booth and he’ll crush his man. His money will likely be made at guard down the road, but he’ll start out as a good center option who can step in and play right away.
CFN Projection: Fifth Round

6. Braxston Cave, Notre Dame 6-3, 303
Extremely quick for his size and able to work in just about every style, he’s a great quarterback for a line and will work to make sure he does what’s needed. A leader, he’ll set the tone in the weight room and in practices as the one the rest of the line will work around – he’ll make the line his. While he has a hard time consistently getting into his man and doesn’t always move his feet well enough – especially considering his athleticism. Banged up a bit, he had a foot problem two years ago and wasn’t able to go through all the drills at the Combine with a shoulder issue. There might be several negatives and concerns, but he’ll be a cheap starting center available in the mid-rounds.
CFN Projection: Fifth Round

7. P.J. Lonergan, LSU 6-3, 304
The potential and fight are there. A tough guy, he has the right attitude and brings the right fire and effort on every play. He’ll battle through the bumps and bruises and attacks well, doing a nice job of helping out the guards and making the smart play at the right time. However, he doesn’t move all that well and he’s missing the functional strength needed for every style of attack. He doesn’t have the body type to be anything more than a zone blocker, but he’ll be a tough cut.
CFN Projection: Sixth Round

8. Joe Madsen, West Virginia 6-3, 310
A nearly perfect look for the spread offense, he gets out quickly in the shotgun and gets his hands on his man almost instantly. He’s large enough with the right size and the right technique, but he’s not nearly physical enough for his strength and tools. Considering the type of offense he’s destined to play in, he’s not enough of an athlete and he doesn’t lock on well enough to get his man to the ground. He can wall off, but he can’t blast.
CFN Projection: Free Agent

9. James Ferentz, Iowa 6-1, 289
A fighter who always gets after the block, he’s aggressive, quick off the ball and brings a little bit of a punch and power when he gets the right pad level. If he was 6-3 and 300 pounds he’d be a solid mid-round pick, but he’s just not big enough with no room to get bigger. He doesn’t have the right frame and he gets engulfed and shoved by the larger tackles, but he’ll battle in a camp.
CFN Projection: Free Agent

10. Matt Stankiewitch, Penn State 6-3, 302
While he’s not going to blast away on anyone and he’s not athletic in any way, he might end up working out for a zone-blocking scheme with the ability to wall off his man and the smarts to run a line. He gets off the ball in a hurry and he’ll fight to make a block, but he’s extremely limited.
CFN Projection: Free Agent

11. Mario Benavides, Louisville Proj. Free Agent
12. Dalton Freeman, Clemson Proj. Free Agent
13. Skyler Allen, Ohio Proj. Free Agent
14. Ricky Barnum, Michigan Proj. Free Agent
15. Eloy Atkinson, UTEP Proj. Free Agent
16. Nick Carlson, Wyoming Proj. Free Agent
17. Adam Bice, Akron Proj. Free Agent
18. Richard Helepiko, Fresno State Proj. Free Agent
19. A.J. Hawkins, Ole Miss Proj. Free Agent
20. Sherman Carter, Tennessee State Proj. Free Agent