Wolf's Freakshow: Part I
And this is why I'm fascinated by players that have been gifted with so much more. Before we proceed with the 2012 Freakshow for this year's NFL Draft, I offer this disclaimer: to be called a "freak" in my world is a term of endearment.
"Freaks play football" and have existed in the game of football since our species began pummeling each other and the inception of the NFL did nothing to diminish this maxim. NFL executives, scouts and coaches have searched the world high and low, near and far for the biggest, strongest, fastest, quickest and most powerful people on the planet. Ted Hendricks, Bob Hayes, L.C. Greenwood, Ed "Too Tall" Jones, Bubba Smith, Deacon Jones, Harold Carmichael, Jerry Ball and many more are proof of this truism.
I do not use the word "freak" in any way, shape or form with a negative connotation and certainly don't mean to offend those that may use this word to describe the less fortunate plight of some people. I use the word within the context of which I lived, played and admired for so many years: the locker room.
And so, without delay or hesitation, I offer you the most rare, exceptional and unique human beings in this year's NFL Draft - regardless of where they may be selected. So I invite you to step right up and don't be shy…because you will not believe your eyes!
Donald Stephenson: OT Oklahoma
Good: Great athlete with freaky wingspan. Excellent feet with excellent lateral movement. Donald ran the best 40 time (4.94) of any tackle at the combine and also had the best vertical jump (36"). Athletically, there's nothing he can't do but…
Bad: This guy won't bust a grape. Allows d-linemen to get their hands inside, catches way too much and generally shows a soft demeanor while playing tackle football. Doesn't play with any authority; plays the game like he's holding custard in his hand. Is not physical. Undisciplined. Doesn't finish what he starts. Late bloomer at Oklahoma, doesn't have a ton of experience. Lazy, plays like he just ate Thanksgiving dinner. Soft…warm…and fuzzy. Needs to get in the weight room and do something other than roll plates around. Bench-pressed 225-pounds at the combine only 19 times.
Freak-Factor: 7.0 This guy has the talent to be one of the best left tackles in the game. There's just one problem: he hates football… but he is a freak.
Josh Robinson: CB Central Florida
Good: Explosive. This guy is Mount Vesuvius and receivers, Pompeii. Great burst, rare athleticism and shows the ability to run with any receiver in the league. As fast as he needs to be. Freaky quick feet. Shows excellent reaction to the ball. Compact and bigger than you think. Human missile but carries no warhead.
Bad: Needs to be more physical. Gets covered up on the edge too easily. Needs to get off blocks. Tackles too high, doesn't wrap. Only a junior and needs to develop. Plays too stiff and doesn't have rubber bands for hips. Doesn't have a great pedal and needs to improve technique. Doesn't use his hands enough and receivers often get inside position on him.
Freak Factor: 7.5 Josh did a great job shutting down A.J. Green in a bowl game. He has all the tools to be a very good corner for years to come but needs to learn the idiosyncrasies of playing corner at the NFL level. Should he develop the nuance needed to play the position, the combination of his speed and athleticism could make him a significant force on the perimeter.
Thank you, ladies and gentlemen, make sure you tell your friends…and tips are always appreciated.
(Make sure you come back tomorrow for the biggest freaks on the face of the 2012 NFL Draft.)