NFL Draft Stock Week 15: Risers include Penn State C Michal Menet

We saw plenty of terrific performances from offensive prospects who improved their NFL draft stock in Week 15. Here are the risers and sliders for Week 15. And don’t forget to begin your own mock draft with PFN’s 100% free Mock Draft Simulator!

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NFL Draft Stock Report: Week 15 Risers

Week 15 saw the highly-rated Florida Gators go down in defeat after sitting star tight end Kyle Pitts, a choice that is sure to be second-guessed for a long time. The Saturday before Championship Weekend also saw several next-level prospects from the scoring side of the ball improve their draft stocks. Here are the risers and sliders for Week 15.

Michal Menet, C, Penn State

Menet is one of the best-kept secrets at the center position, and he draws rave reviews in the scouting community. He’s a tough, consistent blocker who plays with terrific technique and intensity. And while Menet may not blow anyone away with eye-popping numbers at the combine or pro day workouts, scouts believe he’s a scheme-versatile blocker with starting potential on Sundays. He’s a big riser in this Week 15 NFL draft stock report.

Jimmy Morrissey, C, Pittsburgh

The back end of the draft is deep at the center position, and Morrissey is a late-rounder with starting potential in the NFL. A leader on the field who gets rave reviews from Pitt coaches, Morrissey is a fundamentally sound blocker with good mobility and movement skills. His blocking helped pave the way for 317 yards rushing against Georgia Tech, a contest the Panthers won by a score of 34-20. He’s not the biggest blocker, but Morrissey would fit a zone-blocking scheme that requires him to block in motion. 

Michael Carter, RB, North Carolina

Two other Tar Heels are worthy of being listed as risers this week, but Carter wins out; he was the best of the UNC skill players during the team’s 62-26 drubbing of Miami. Carter carried the ball 24 times for 308 yards and three TDs, a month’s worth of production in four quarters. Carter is a little quicker, a little more creative, and more improvisational than his sophomore teammate Javonte Williams, although both are legitimate next-level backs who grade as mid-round draft picks. 

C.J. Marable, RB, Coastal Carolina

The Chanticleers had a close call against Troy, but they ultimately prevailed, 42-38, to remain unbeaten. Marable was responsible for half the points scored by Coastal, and his final totals included 120 yards rushing on 20 carries with two TDs and 47 receiving yards on three catches with another score.

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Marable has been a major cog in Coastal’s success this season, scoring 16 touchdowns (10 rushing and six receiving) with just under 900 total yards. He’s a classic third-down back at the next level, and while Marable may not be drafted in April, I expect him to compete for a roster spot next summer — he’s a big riser in this Week 15 NFL draft stock report.

D.J. Davidson, DT, Arizona State

Davidson entered the season with a sixth-round grade on my board, but despite a season that has consisted of three games, the junior has improved two rounds based on his development. During this weekend’s blowout victory over interstate rival Arizona, Davidson finished second on the defense with seven tackles, two more than the five he registered against UCLA the prior week.

Davidson is large (6-foot-4, 305 pounds) and athletic, and he destroys blocks with power as well as quickness. He comes with great potential and offers possibilities as a two-gap defensive end or a conventional tackle.

Dillon Stoner, WR, Oklahoma State

Tylan Wallace is the name everyone thinks of when the conversation swings to receiver prospects out of Oklahoma State, but don’t sleep on his teammate. With Wallace out of the lineup this weekend, Stoner picked up the slack and caught eight passes for 247 yards and three scores. Stoner has better size than Wallace and does a great job complementing his star teammate.

Presently graded as a fifth-round prospect, Stoner has the skills to make a depth chart at the next level as a possession receiver. He’s a big riser in this Week 15 NFL draft stock report.

Bailey Gaither, WR, San Jose State

Gaither is the third Spartan to make the risers list this season, and why not? San Jose State is undefeated and will play in the Mountain West Conference title game next week. Gaither, who returned to SJSU after being granted a sixth season of eligibility, is having another great season. His numbers during the Spartans’ victory over Nevada included seven receptions for 156 yards.

On the season, Gaither is averaging 17.4 yards per reception on 36 catches. Gaither may not get drafted, but like his teammate Tre Walker, he has all the skills to make a next-level roster as a fifth receiver and return specialist.

NFL Draft Sleeper Prospect

James Mitchell, TE, Virginia Tech

The Hokies finished off a tough season by thrashing interstate rival Virginia, 33-15. Once again, as he has all season, Mitchell displayed flashes of brilliance; he finished the game with three receptions for 67 yards. On the season, Mitchell is averaging 16.7 yards on 26 catches and has found the end zone four times. The junior is an athletic move tight end with the speed to split the seam downfield. Mitchell was little-known before the season, but he has jumped onto the scouting radar with his play this year.

NFL Draft Stock Report: Week 15 Slider

Akial Byers, DT, Missouri

Byers was graded as a mid-Day 3 prospect before the season based on his size, speed, and potential. And while his size and speed remain, Byers has never transitioned those athletic skills into production. He’s totaled 13 tackles and 2.5 TFLs this season, slightly more per-game production than his 18 tackles from a year ago. To this point, Byers has yet to prove he’s more football player than athlete.

Tony Pauline is Pro Football Network’s Chief Draft Analyst and Insider. Follow him on Twitter @TonyPauline. Follow PFN on Twitter @PFN365.

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