Bucky Brooks is one of our staff’s favorite writers for the league’s official website. Over the last few weeks, Brooks has been going through rankings of the top NFL prospects he’s scouted since the year 2000 at a variety of different positions.
Brooks named former Falcons quarterback Mike Vick as one of his top QB prospects of all time, but a pair of current players also made his list.
First, Julio Jones came in at No. 3 among the top wide receivers he’s ever scouted, trailing only Calvin Johnson and Andre Johnson. Here’s what Brooks had to say about Jones coming out of Alabama:
Whenever a five-star recruit is expected to take the college football world by storm from the time he steps onto campus, NFL scouts pay close attention to his development to see if he lives up to the hype. Jones didn’t disappoint evaluators tracking his progress. He displayed a rare combination of size, speed, route-running ability and ball skills that made him a bit of an avatar as a No. 1 receiver. . . Jones has certainly met expectations as a five-star talent in the NFL.
Jones was joined by Falcons outside linebacker Vic Beasley, who ranked No. 7 on Brooks’ list of the top-10 pass rushers he’s scouted:
Whenever a college pass rusher displays exceptional first-step quickness and burst coming off the corner, scouts pay closer attention to his hand skills to see if the prospect has the potential to develop into an elite playmaker off the edge. That’s why there was plenty of intrigue surrounding Beasley’s game after he collected 33 sacks as the DPR (designated pass rusher) for the Tiger . . Despite getting off to a slow start as a pro, Beasley has flashed enough potential to justify the high marks that he earned as a collegian. He tallied 15.5 sacks and six forced fumbles on the way to earning All-Pro honors in his second season.
Jones and Beasley are the heart and soul of their respective units. As long as these two continue to live up to their potential, the Falcons should at least be a respectable competitor in the NFC South.
Source: Falcon's Wire | Tim Weaver | July 11th 2017
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