The 2011 NFL Draft is almost upon us. The flag carrier this year for the Florida Gators is without question Mike Pouncey. Even though he struggled mightily this past season, he is a virtual lock to be drafted in the first round.
The projections of where he will go in the first round are plenty. So it is pretty much everyone guess as to where he will end up. Will it be the New York Giants, who are said to be targeting offensive guards? The Miami Dolphins at #19? Who knows. But it should be one heck of a show.
NFL Draft Scout: Currently has Mike Pouncey the #1 rated OG (out of 158 players) in the entire draft and a solid first round projection.
Rob Rang, the lead analyst of NFL Draft Scout says of Mike Pouncey:
The unfortunate reality is the Mike is not quite as athletic as his brother Maurkice, a rookie Pro Bowler for the AFC champion Pittsburgh Steelers in 2010. Because they are identical twins, the expectation of some is that Mike is going to come into the NFL and enjoy the same type of immediate success. Those unrealistic expectations make Pouncey, a solid player in his own right, a touch overrated.
Maybe so, but I'm sure that this type of opinion (judging by the projections) isn't widespread. He probably wont have the same have the same type of success that is brother enjoyed last year, but I don't think that is a big issue at all. Making the Pro Bowl as a rookie center in the NFL is a heck of a thing to accomplish.
Pro Football Weekly: Currently has Mike Pouncey as a first round pick.
On his positives:
Big, strong and naturally thick. Can match up with massive wide-bodies — really battled and bulled Alabama’s Marcell Dareus. Has a defensive disposition and will get after it. Plays with a good, power base and lower-body strength — strong anchor and contact balance. Commanding, vocal, line leader. Versatile. Has a proven NFL pedigree. Tough, passionate and extremely hardworking — takes pride in his craft. Superb football and personal character.
Anybody who can battle, bull - and win against Marcell Dareus (who most say is a top 5 pick) is going to get a serious look. The personal character that he possess we all know, and we all also know that the NFL values this extremely high. If someone has a personal "issue," they will more than likely end up paying for it by falling in the draft. Unless of course, apparently you are Cam Newton.
I would also throw in the fact that he played center in college as a positive. Not many lineman can boast that they played guard and center in college. But that of course leads me to....
On his negatives:
Really struggled snapping the ball and consistently made errant shotgun snaps low and to the left of the quarterback with a funky, flick, wrist-snapping motion — skee-balled too many balls to the quarterback. Inconsistent hand use. Does not innately feel pressure or switch off blocks to account for the blitz. Lunges on the second level and lands on the ground too much. Tends to lock his legs and play a bit tall.
It is pretty much a given that Mike will not be playing that much of the center position in the NFL. But I still say it is a bonus that he has and I think it would be a plus to anyone who drafts him if an emergency situation develops. The "switch off blocks to account for the blitz" could be an issue but that will be taken care of rather quickly once teams get into the full swing of training camps.
I will say this though, and that is that after watching Mike for the last four years, whichever team it is that selects him in the draft, is going to get one fantastic football player.