Penn State defensive end Aaron Maybin is a quick-off-the-snap pass rusher who
also has experience dropping back into zone coverage. Currently projected as a
top-15 talent in Scout.com Draft Analyst Chris Steuber's final
mock draft, Maybin has drawn plenty of interest from the team that Steuber
believes will select him with the No. 13 pick overall, the Washington Redskins. A source told Scout.com that Maybin has met with the team at
least twice during the pre-draft period, and that he also had workouts, visits
or meetings with the Cincinnati Bengals, San Francisco 49ers, Tampa Bay Buccaneers,
Seattle Seahawks and the Cleveland Browns.
If Liberty running back Rashad Jennings is still available when the
Philadelphia Eagles make their second-round pick, don't be surprised to see
them snatch the 6-foot-1, 231-pound versatile back off the board. A source has
told Scout.com that the team has been very active in their discussions
about Jennings, who rushed for 1,500 yards and scored 19 times his senior
year. The hard-charging runner worked out for the Eagles back in March, and
he's also worked out for the Denver Broncos, the New England Patriots, and the
New York Jets. He's also had an official visit with the New Orleans Saints and
drew interest at his Pro Day from the Carolina Panthers, Indianapolis Colts
and the Washington Redskins.
Nate Swift finished his career at Nebraska as the school's all-time
leader in career receptions with 166 catches. During his senior year, he
pulled-in 63 balls for 941 yards and ten touchdowns. "I worked hard
during my career to be consistent and to be the best that I can," he said
during a phone interview. The 6-foot-2, 203-pound receiver has demonstrated a
real knack for figuring out the weak spots in his opponent's coverage scheme.
"That was one of the biggest things Coach Callahan taught me was reading the
defense and finding a way to get open so that the quarterback can get
the ball in your hands." Swift, who had a private workout with the Denver
Broncos, has experience as a punt returner and as both a slot receiver and
LSU fullback Quinn Johnson
AP Photo/Bill Haber
LSU fullback Quinn Johnson didn't get many opportunities to run the ball
or catch passes for the Tigers, but he was a key player in their success
because he's such an effective blocker. At the NFL Combine, Johnson had formal
interviews with eight teams, including the Oakland Raiders and the New Orleans
Saints. And at his school's Pro Day, he spent time talking with the running
backs coach from Green Bay and a few members of the Saints' staff.
"Pretty much all of the teams talk about my blocking skills," he
said during a phone interview. "I enjoyed every minute of the interviews,
trying to show them as much as I could about who I am." The
youngest of four children, Johnson knows that people who only see him on the
field perceive his as a hard-nosed, tough guy because of the way he takes on
defensive linemen and linebackers with an aggressive streak. "I think
most people are surprised to learn that I'm not that way off the field and
that I have a girlfriend that I've been with for eight and half years,"
he said with a laugh. The Miami Dolphins, who asked Johnson to make an
official visit, are among the teams that have shown strong interest in him.
Defensive end Ryan Kees is hopeful that he'll get a chance to show an NFL
club what he can bring to the table. A three-year starter at St. Cloud State,
Kees started his collegiate career off with a bang. "My very first play
from scrimmage was a sack, so that was really cool," he told Scout.com.
Elected team captain twice, the defensive end plays with good technique and
brings a lot of intelligence to the football field. The mechanical engineering
major, who also minored in biology, was one of 15 finalists in the nation for
the Draddy Award, commonly referred to as the "Academic Heisman".
The 6-foot-5, 276-pound lineman likes his chances of making an NFL roster.
"I have a really good body size. I can put on a lot of weight and still
maintain my athleticism," he said. "I work my hands well and I've
got good pass-rush technique. I'm also able to stop the run and have good
breakout speed and acceleration, especially for my size. At the Cactus Bowl,
Kees drew interest from a number of teams that included the Carolina Panthers,
Pittsburgh Steelers, Jacksonville Jaguars, Minnesota Vikings and the Atlanta Falcons.
At the NFL Scouting Combine, Virginia tight end John Phillips showed his
athleticism by finishing first in the three-cone drill, fourth in the vertical
jump, and third in the 20-yard shuttle. And with the Cavaliers being coached
by former Jets head coach, Al Groh, Phillips has benefited from a pro-style
offense that prepares tight ends well for the multitude of roles they may be
asked to play in the NFL. "The tight ends are a featured component of the
offense," the 6-foot-6, 251-pound receiver said. "The way that Coach
Groh uses tight ends, such as playing fullback and going in motion, you have a
lot of different jobs and different assignments on a week-to-week basis."
One of the teams that took a close-up look at Phillips at a private workout
during the pre-draft season was the Denver Broncos.
Oklahoma center Jon Cooper
Photo: Oklahoma Athletics
Oklahoma center Jon Cooper had workouts with the Atlanta Falcons,
Cleveland Browns, New York Jets and St. Louis Rams along with teammates Phil Loadholt and Brandon Walker. The 6-foot-291-pound offensive lineman, who can
also play guard, believes he's had the opportunity to develop a balanced skill
set in run-blocking and pass-blocking that will help him be successful at the
next level. "It's been nice because in Oklahoma we had Adrian Peterson
and we were a power-running team for while. This past year we went to a
spread, no-huddle offense where we probably threw the ball more than 50
percent of the time, so I feel I can do either one really well," he said
during a phone interview. Out of all of his workouts, Cooper said the one with
the Browns was the one that stood out as different from the others. "The
offensive line coach was a really intense guy, he's a no-nonsense, old-school
kind of coach—which I really like," he said. "Some of our coaches here in Oklahoma were
like that. They didn't put up with a lot and you could tell he didn't either.
He put us through drills and told us exactly what he wanted and you could tell
didn't want it any other way. I think it's good when they tell you exactly what
they want you to do. It makes it easier because you don't have to read his mind."
UCF cornerback Joe Burnett worked out for the Cleveland Browns back in
March, and the team was obviously impressed by what they saw. According to a
source, the team has followed-up on Burnett as recently as this week. The
multi-talented athlete, who also handles kickoff returns, intercepted 16
passes during his college career and defended 35 more. A reliable tackler,
Burnett logged 221 stops in 50 game appearances for UCF. The Patriots also put
him through a private workout, and he had an official visit with the
USC linebacker Clay Matthews isn't the only draft prospect with NFL
bloodlines out of this year's draft class. One of the other athletes
whose father played in the NFL is Londen Fryar, son of former Patriots and
Eagles wide receiver Irving Fryar. Although Londen started out at Western Michigan as a wide receiver, he transitioned to the other side of the ball and
became a first-team All-MAC performer twice during his three years as a
cornerback. Even though his father played wide receiver, Londen had no regrets about
switching to defense. "I just like playing football, so if it's
cornerback or playing wide receiver wherever they put me, I was going to have
fun on the field. I just like going out there and competing," he told Scout.com.
Fryar had the opportunity to work with former Cowboys safety Bill Bates, who
was his position coach in the Texas Versus The Nation Game. "He
taught me a lot of good things pertaining to football and a lot of good things
pertaining to life. He's a very good guy. As a matter a fact, I still keep in
contact with him," Fryar said. During his 42-game career at Western
Michigan, Fryar made 160 tackles, defended 27 passes, intercepted seven
passes, forced a fumble and blocked a kick.
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A member of the Pro Football Writers of America, Ed Thompson's player interviews and NFL features are published across the Scout.com network and at FOXSports.com. You can follow him on Twitter or Facebook. Or contact him by email
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