Best Prospects For 2010 NFL Draft

The NFL scouting combine is in session as teams begin looking ahead to the 2010 draft and beyond. NFLDraftScout.com, USA TODAY scouting service, offers its prospects — the players currently projected to go in the draft's first two rounds — heading into the combine, a list that will evolve in the weeks leading up to the April 22-24 draft. Players are listed with their position, school, height, weight and the projected round they will be drafted (*indicates underclassman):


Big Suh

1. Ndamukong Suh — DT, Nebraska 6-4, 302, 1: In the classroom, Suh majored in construction management. But on the field, he starred in destruction and mayhem. Has everything necessary to become one of the most dominant defensive linemen in the NFL, where his rare combination of size, skills and competitiveness should earn immediate respect. Can run around or through blockers faster than you can say his name (En-DOM-ah-ken SOO). Best suited to play defensive tackle in a four-man line, Suh is tough enough to hold down the middle as a nose tackle yet also has the agility and quickness to be a menace as an end. His instincts are conspicuous, and he can even drop into pass coverage. Last season, Suh finished fourth in the Heisman Trophy voting, won the Nagurski, Outland, Bednarik and Lombardi awards and was All-American and Big 12 player of the year.


Eric Berry

2. *Eric Berry— FS, Tennessee, 5-11, 203, 1: Rated the top cornerback in the country coming out of high school, Berry was moved to safety at Tennessee but has the ability to play either position in the NFL. In fact, he appears more productive and involved as a coverage defensive back than he is playing off as a safety. In 2008 he became the first Volunteer named first-team All-American since 1990. He is an intense player with rare instincts to read and react, plays under control and doesn't bite on play-action or pump fakes. Won the Jim Thorpe Award as the nation's best defensive back last season.


Gerald McCoy

3. *Gerald McCoy— DT, Oklahoma, 6-4, 298, 1: Persistent, powerful and should be more productive in the NFL than his college stats indicate. He enters the draft after two years in which he totaled 26½ tackles for a loss and 12½ sacks. McCoy was the key man in Oklahoma's defensive front and demanded the attention of multiple blockers, thereby opening the way for teammates to make tackles. He is at his best when he anticipates the snap count, explodes off the ball quickly and gets into the blocker with momentum rather than being the counterpuncher attempting to gain control. Has excellent feet, a good spin move and closing speed that makes him a constant pest in pursuit.


Russell Okung

4. Russell Okung — T, Oklahoma State, 6-5, 302, 1: A big man who plays best in big games. Shows advanced skills as a pass blocker and should be able to play left tackle in the NFL. In 2008, scouts noted his ability to neutralize Texas defensive end Brian Orakpo, the Big 12 defensive player of the year and a Pro Bowler as a rookie for the Washington Redskins in 2009. Okung uses great footwork and athleticism as a pass blocker but seems to lack the level of aggression scouts like to see in a run blocker. He appears too satisfied to merely maintain a position on run blocks rather than trying to obliterate defenders.


Joe Haden

5. *Joe Haden — CB, Florida, 5-11, 190, 1: Became the first true freshman to start at corner for Florida. Now, after 40 starts, he has more than shown he is ready for the NFL. He is the complete package: smooth and consistent in coverage, aggressive against the run and has unreal ball reaction and the ability to go all the way on an interception or return.


Bryan Bulaga

6. *Bryan Bulaga — T, Iowa, 6-6, 312, 1: Shows the footwork and agility to be an excellent pass blocker and could become a solid left tackle in the NFL, although he also played guard at Iowa. Uses finesse, position and angles more than sheer force. He does have adequate strength but can be pushed back by a strong bull rush. A competitive, smart, hardworking team leader, Bulaga was selected the 2009 Big Ten offensive lineman of the year. A thyroid problem is being characterized as a short-term issue, but it surely will be analyzed by doctors at the combine.


Sam Bradford

7. *Sam Bradford— QB, Oklahoma, 6-4, 223, 1: After sensational seasons as a freshman All-American and sophomore Heisman Trophy winner, he was expected to sail through his junior year with more honors and then perhaps become the top pick in the 2010 draft. Instead, he injured his right (passing) shoulder in the first game of the season, reinjured it against Texas, had surgery and then focused on healing to get ready for the draft. He remains an intriguing prospect, with supreme leadership ability to go with excellent height, mobility and accuracy. His arm strength is very good but not awe-inspiring. His release point is something less than over-the-top, which sometimes nullifies what should be a height advantage. Bradford's career totals include completing 67.6% of his passes with 88 touchdowns — 50 as a sophomore — and only 16 interceptions.


Derrick Morgan

8. *Derrick Morgan— DE, Georgia Tech, 6-4, 272, 1: After being surrounded by talent on the defensive line in 2008, Morgan needed to show he could remain productive as the only returning starter in 2009. He showed that and more while becoming Atlantic Coast Conference defensive player of the year with 55 tackles, including 12½ sacks. Uses instinct and awareness as much as he does athleticism and strength. Morgan has an explosive first step yet plays with discipline and understands how to maintain leverage.


Dez Bryant

9. *Dez Bryant — WR, Oklahoma State, 6-2, 220, 1: A big, fast, aggressive receiver with great hands and the ability to go to the house whenever he has the ball. The only problem he had with defensive backs was inappropriate contact with Deion Sanders and lying to the NCAA about the incident. That resulted in Bryant being suspended in October for the balance of the season. But he more than convinced scouts he is a potential NFL superstar with jaw-dropping production as a sophomore, when he caught 87 passes for 1,480 yards and was the Big 12 leader in receiving yards a game (113.9), scoring (9.69 ppg), touchdown receptions (19) and punt returns (17.9 a try).


Jimmy Clausen

10. *Jimmy Clausen— QB, Notre Dame, 6-2, 223, 1: Chose Notre Dame because he wanted to be tutored by coach Charlie Weis. A natural leader, Clausen can identify coverages quickly, uses excellent footwork to buy time and has an accurate but not overly strong arm. He handled himself well during a roller-coaster career at Notre Dame. He was often brutalized as a starting freshman and threw 17 interceptions as a sophomore. But despite playing hurt, he improved last year with 28 touchdowns, seven interceptions and a completion percentage of 68%. In January, he had surgery to repair a torn ligament in his right big toe.

Check out the remaining top NFL prospects for the 2010 draft here:

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