A wild weekend in college football saw third-ranked Oregon get hammered by Utah and Arkansas almost pull off the upset against No. 2 Alabama. Scouts also saw several
unheralded defensive-back-seven prospects make their mark and a little-known small-school receiver dominate the opposition. Here are the risers and sliders for Week 12 with our 2022 NFL Draft Stock Report.
2022 NFL Draft Stock Report: Risers from Week 12
Whose draft stock rose the most in Week 12 of the college football season? Let’s give credit to the youngsters improving their craft late in the season.
Andrew Booth Jr., CB, Clemson
After lining up as Clemson’s nickel back last season, Andrew Booth Jr. took over the starting job this year and has shown significant improvement in his game. A feisty corner rarely challenged by opponents, Booth is quick, fast, and possesses next-level ball skills. He was terrific against Wake Forest’s lethal aerial attack, intercepting 1 pass and breaking up 2 more. Graded by scouts as a third-round prospect at the start of the season, Booth has climbed into the draft’s initial 50 selections.
Mike Rose, LB, Iowa State
It came down to the wire as Iowa State suffered a heartbreaking 7-point loss to Oklahoma. For Rose, it was 60 minutes of nonstop go. He finished the game with 6 tackles, 3 tackles for loss, and 2 sacks. Though not credited with a pass defensed, his tipped ball led to an ISU interception late in the game that the Cyclones converted into a game-tying score.
Rose is a fierce, instinctive defender with questionable long speed. Yet, his ability to diagnose plays before they unfold and his willingness to sacrifice his body to make the tackle will have defensive coaches clamoring to draft Rose on Day 3.
Josh Johnson, WR, Tulsa
Josh Johnson entered the season graded as a late Day 3 prospect by scouts, but the senior has exceeded expectations. The reliable wideout has accumulated 60 receptions for 709 yards in 10 games this season, both career-best totals. Johnson comes with average size, but he’s very quick and consistently separates from defenders. He’s a slot-type receiver for the next level who offers potential returning punts.
Malcolm Rodriguez, LB, Oklahoma State
The Cowboys have lived in anonymity this season despite being a top-10 team with one of the better defenses in the country. Malcolm Rodriguez is their leader. A hybrid defender who has played both safety and linebacker at OSU, Rodriguez is instinctive, tough as nails, and flies to the ball. He covers a lot of areas on the field, and the senior sells out to make plays. With just the rivalry game against Oklahoma left on the schedule, Rodriguez is 8 tackles shy of his career-best 103, which he produced in 2019.
The question is, where will he line up in the NFL: SS or LB? In the day and age of safety-sized linebackers on Sunday rosters, I could easily see Rodriguez drafted on Day 3 by a team looking for a one-gap, run-and-chase linebacker.
Sleeper Prospect | Jack Sorenson, WR, Miami (OH)
Despite the fact that Jack Sorenson has been nothing but uber-productive in three of the past four seasons, most scouts ignored the wideout coming into the 2021 campaign. Shame. The sure-handed Sorenson is in the midst of a career year, setting personal bests for receptions (65), receiving yards (1,209), and TDs (9) with one game left in the regular season.
Sorenson comes with average size (5’11”, 195 pounds) and speed (4.55), yet he’s smart, tough, and ever-reliable. He very much reminds me of Hunter Renfrow, the pesky wideout who played college ball for Clemson and is now catching passes for the Las Vegas Raiders.
Small-School Prospect | Liu’Undre Gallimore, WR, Valdosta State
Liu’Undre Gallimore was a player I highlighted during last week’s edition of the Between the Hashes podcast. And while his team lost, the speedy wideout did not disappoint. Gallimore finished the game against West Florida with 9 receptions for 198 yards and 3 TDs, taking one 53 yards to the house. The senior is a legitimate vertical threat who runs the 40-yard dash in the 4.3s, yet he plays even faster. Gallimore is more than just a fast guy on the football field — he’s a good pass catcher with the potential for kick returns.
Week 12 Sliders
As much as we like to focus on the positive side of things, not every prospect rises through the ranks. Who slid down in Week 12 and possibly affected their draft stock?
Kevin Marks Jr., RB, Buffalo
While I graded Kevin Marks Jr. as a priority free agent coming into the season, a few scouts gave the running back sixth-round grades. Marks has played more like an undrafted free agent in 2021. Though he’s struggled with injury, Marks never settled in as Buffalo’s feature back as was expected after the departure of Jaret Patterson. In eight games this season, Marks has just 424 rushing yards and 8 receptions to his credit.
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