2013 NFL Draft - Top Mountain West Prospects

Posted Apr 16, 2013

2013 NFL Draft - Top Mountain West Prospects. Who are the best and brightest NFL prospects from each league?

2013 NFL Draft 

Top 5 M-West Players

By Pete Fiutak
Follow Us ... @ColFootballNews 

2013 NFL Draft Analysis
- Quarterbacks | Running Backs | Wide Receivers
- Offensive Tackles | Offensive Guards | Centers 

Top 5 Conference Prospects
- ACC | Big East | Big Ten | Big 12 | M-West | Pac-12 | SEC 

1. CB Jamar Taylor, Boise State 5-11, 182
With good size, he's able to get physical with freakish strength – cranking out 22 reps at the Combine – with the toughness to jam and beat up receivers. More than anything else, though, is his raw blazing speed. His hitting ability is terrific and he can be a disruptive force, but his sub-4.4 wheels set him apart from the pack and make him the total package as a workout warrior. Now the tools have to translate into more production, proving to be just okay in coverage and relying on his raw speed a bit too often to play catch up. There are long-run durability concerns after suffering a broken leg, but he came back and did just fine. With the right coaching he could become a terrific all-around playmaker, but he should fit in somewhere right away.
CFN Projection: Second Round

2. TE Gavin Escobar, San Diego State 6-6, 254
A go-to receiver who could become a main man for an NFL passing attack, he looks the part with excellent size, soft hands and great production as a key part of the Aztec offense. While his 40-time at the Combine was a miserable 4.84, he's functionally fast and was fantastic in the short and cone drills. Like a big receiver, he's a strong route runner and he'll fight for the ball when it's in his radius. He's not going to hit anyone and he's never going to push anyone around in the running game, but the tools and talent are there to fit what pro-style offenses are looking to do. If he's able to get in a pro weight room and transform his body a bit, the sky's the limit.
CFN Projection: Second Round

3. CB Leon McFadden, San Diego State 5-10, 183
One of the best defensive backs in the Mountain West over the last few seasons, he's a pure cover-corner who takes on the job of handling everyone's No. 1 receiver and sticks to him like glue. Quicker than fast, he moves well and stays within range with good anticipation and instincts, always seeming to stay a step ahead of his man. The blazing NFL wheels aren't there to stay with the speedsters, and while he'll tackle, he's not a big hitter, but there are enough overall tools in place to be a great No. 2 corner or even a nickel and dime defender. Even though he'll need to be surrounded by athletes, and even though he'll need safety help, he knows how to handle himself and should be a solid longtime pro.
CFN Projection: Third Round

4. S Phillip Thomas, Fresno State 6-1, 208
A peerless ball-hawker and a playmaker, an argument could be made that he was the best defensive back in college football last season with a nation-leading eight interceptions to go along with four sacks. Great with the ball in his hands, he's dangerous at going from being a defensive star to an offensive weapon in a hurry. With great instincts he's always in the right place at the right time and has an uncanny knack for coming up with the right play at the right time. He's not fast and he'll never outrun anyone, but he's functionally athletic and makes up for his shortcomings by never taking a wasted step. He'll need to be surrounded by more athletic and quicker defensive backs, but he can find a starting role in a secondary for the next decade.
CFN Projection: Third Round

5. S Duke Williams, Nevada 5-11, 203
Extremely versatile, Williams can play either corner or safety with excellent quickness and size to go along with his ability to work just about anywhere. He moves well with good speed, and he makes himself bigger with great leaping ability and all-around athleticism. However, while he's versatile, he's not an elite corner and he's not a good enough tackler to be a star at safety. Wrapping up is a problem, going for the hit and the bounce too much, and he has to be far more physical. There are warning signs, but his athleticism is enough to make him a regular NFL starter.
CFN Projection: Third Round