MWC Scouting Reports for 2021 NFL Draft

2021 NFL Draft | MWC Scouting Reports: San Diego State Aztecs

For information on San Diego State cornerback Darren Hall, check out his 2021 NFL Draft Profile.

Dwayne Johnson Jr. NFL Draft Scouting Report | Safety

Positives: Two-year starter coming off a slightly disappointing campaign. Big, physical safety who is best playing downhill. Looks the part, works to get off blocks, and stays with the action. Keeps plays in front of him, effectively reads as well as diagnoses the action, and possesses a burst of speed. Tough defending the run, physical, and wraps up tackling.

Negatives: Lacks speed to the sidelines. Very spotty during college and was not a consistent producer.

Analysis: Johnson is a safety who looks the part and often plays to it, but he needs to elevate his game and consistently play at a high level. He’s a traditional strong safety who can also line up in a zone system, and Johnson has a productive special teams’ history that translates well to the next level.

Jacob Capra NFL Draft Scouting Report | Offensive Line

Positives: Oregon transfer who started the past two seasons at both tackle spots as well as guard. Explosive and fundamentally sound blocker who gets the most from his ability. Stays square, keeps opponents in front of him, and works well with linemates.

Quick out to the second level, fluid pulling across the line of scrimmage, and works to get a pad on defenders. Blocks with proper pad level while also effectively placing his hands into opponents. Displays outstanding vision as well as instincts and patience and works hard with teammates.

Negatives: Average strength and struggles finishing blocks. Needs to sink his butt more at the line of scrimmage.

Analysis: Capra is an underrated blocking prospect who is often dismissed in scouting circles. He possesses size and movement skills as well as growth potential, and he’s a developmental prospect for a zone-blocking system.

Kyle Spalding NFL Draft Scouting Report | Offensive Line

Positives: Two-year starter who primarily lined up at left tackle. Tall, small-area tackle with growth potential. Sets with a wide base, fires into blocks, and works through the whistle. Fundamentally sound, anchors in pass protection and has the size to engulf defenders on running downs. Keeps his feet moving, keeps his hands active, and stays square.

Negatives: Doesn’t sink his butt at the line of scrimmage. Lacks lateral blocking range. Average athlete and struggles finishing blocks.

Analysis: Spalding is a size prospect with limited upside, but his growth potential makes him worth considering for a practice squad.

Tariq Thompson NFL Draft Scouting Report | Safety

Positives: Four-year starter who intercepted 12 passes and broke up 35 during his college career. Tough, instinctive defensive back with a well-rounded game. Does a great job anticipating the action, possesses a closing burst, and consistently blows up plays.

Very active, works to make plays against the run and in coverage, and wraps up ball handlers at the point. Fluid pedaling in reverse, tracks the pass in the air, and possesses a nice move to the throw. Takes proper angles to the action and plays heads-up football.

Negatives: Lacks a second gear and plays to one speed. May be tapped out physically.

Analysis: Thompson is a smart, physical defensive back who does a terrific job defending the run and covering the pass. He comes with physical limitations yet offers scheme versatility and possesses the tools to be used in dime packages and on special teams.

2021 NFL Draft | San Jose State Spartans

Bailey Gaither NFL Draft Scouting Report | Wide Receiver

Positives: Three-year starter who had his 2018 season cut short by injury. An underrated receiver who was very productive at the college level. Quickly releases off the line of scrimmage, immediately gets to top speed, and uses his hands to separate from defenders. Sells routes, extends his hands to offer the quarterback a target, and consistently makes the reception away from his frame.

Settles into the open spot of the defense and adjusts to grab the errant throw. Quickly gets in and out of breaks and displays good footwork running routes. Possesses soft hands and is effective after the catch. Sneaky fast and shows the ability to run away from opponents in the open field.

Negatives: Plays to one speed and does not show a second gear. Must improve his blocking. Occasionally lets passes get inside him, which results in drops.

Analysis: Gaither put together a terrific college career and has the size, pass-catching skills, and play speed to develop into a fifth receiver/return specialist at the next level.

Tre Walker NFL Draft Scouting Report | Wide Receiver

Positives: Two-year starter who caught 79 passes for 1,161 yards as a junior in 2019. A dynamic receiver who also comes with return potential. Quickly releases off the line of scrimmage, immediately gets to top speed, and consistently makes the reception in stride. Adjusts to the throw on crossing patterns, looks the ball into his hands, and works to make himself an available target.

Plays with balance as well as body control, uses the sidelines well, and isn’t afraid to go up against larger opponents to battle for the reception. Solid route runner who quickly gets in and out of breaks.

Negatives: Struggles in battles. Not a stout receiver and cannot take a pounding. Lacks a true second gear. Had an inordinate number of drops last season.

Analysis: Walker is an undersized but super quick wideout who makes an impact when focused on his game. He projects as a fifth receiver/punt returner and has the ability to make an NFL roster if he elevates his play.

2021 NFL Draft | UNLV Rebels

Giovanni Fauolo NFL Draft Scouting Report | Tight End

Positives: Three-year starter who projects to either tight end or fullback, or even H-back depending on the system. Bends his knees, starts with excellent pad level, and fires off the snap into blocks. Gives effort blocking and plays with proper fundamentals. Consistent hands catcher, pulls the errant throw from the air, and works running after the reception. Quickly gets into pass routes and uses his hands to separate from defenders.

Negatives: Doesn’t play to his 40-time or show the ability to get downfield. Possesses marginal blocking strength.

Analysis: Fauolo was a solid player for UNLV yet may not have a true position at the next level. He lacks the strength to be a lead blocker and the speed for the tight end position, but he could move around the field and fill a variety of roles as a backup.

Julio Garcia NFL Draft Scouting Report | Offensive Line

Positives: Two-year starter who also saw action with the first team as a freshman and sophomore. Powerful, small-area blocker who is effective in confined quarters. Quick with his hands and stays square. Uses his wide body to drive opponents off the line or engulf them altogether. Keeps his head on a swivel and works well with linemates, effectively recognizing stunts and blitzes.

Negatives: Not light on his feet, slow to the second level, and cannot block in motion. Struggles to adjust and cannot slide in space.

Analysis: Garcia is a big-bodied blocker with limited athleticism and upside.

Matthew Brayton NFL Draft Scouting Report | Guard

Positives: Two-year starter who primarily lined up at left guard. Tough, nasty blocker who is best in a small area. Strong, stays square, and fires his hands into defenders. Sets with a wide base, works to bend his knees, and gets leverage on opponents. Anchors in pass protection and gets movement run blocking. Explosive and works to finish off defenders.

Negatives: Lumbers around the field, lacks footwork, and cannot slide in space. Must be more consistent properly placing his hands into defenders. Ineffective pulling across the line of scrimmage or blocking in motion.

Analysis: Brayton is a strong, tough blocker with marginal upside. His intensity and power could help him catch on as a backup in a power gap offense.

Want more 2021 NFL Draft prospect news? Want to do your own mock draft?

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Tony Pauline is the Chief Draft Analyst for Pro Football Network. You can read all of Tony’s work here and follow him on Twitter: @TonyPauline.

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