FUTURE STARS: THE BEST DRAFT PROSPECTS TO DISCOVER – WEEK 12

FUTURE STARS: THE BEST DRAFT PROSPECTS TO DISCOVER – WEEK 12
Reading Time: 5 minutes.

In the week that Clemson welcome back future #1 Draft Pick-Elect Trevor Lawrence from Coronavirus protocol, there are a number of Future Stars on offer. 

Future Stars brings you the 2021 NFL Draft Prospects you should keep your eye on each and every week throughout the college season and into next year’s Draft.

Week 12 will see 6 games televised in the UK across the BT Sport channels.

CLEMSON at FLORIDA STATE17:00BT SPORT ESPN
CINCINNATI at USC20:30BT SPORT 3
UCLA at OREGON2030BT SPORT ESPN
TENNESSEE at AUBURN00:00BT SPORT 3
OKLAHOMA STATE at OKLAHOMA00:00BT SPORT ESPN
USC at UTAH03:30BT SPORT 3
ALL TIMES GMT (UK)

Here are your future stars in week 12.

FUTURE STARS

TYLER VAUGHNS – WR – USC

USC WIDE RECEIVER TYLER VAUGHNS. IMAGE CREDIT: Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG

Tyler Vaughns has been really constructive in his production at USC. He is right up there on the all time receiving yards list.

Vaughns is a consistent target. He is a trusty, dependable receiver who provides consistency. He can line up all over the field and has the ability to find holes in coverage with his clean route running

Vaughns is able to contest 50/50 balls, but he has had to learn how to as he doesn’t create a great deal of space or separation.

Vaughns isn’t a flashy player and he doesn’t possess fantastic speed or physicality. He doesn’t have the sudden burst to escape press coverage off the line of scrimmage. Vaughns will likely struggle against the better cornerback play he will experience in the NFL and he can make some catches look more difficult than they need to be.

As a prospect Vaughns isn’t going to blow anyone away. In the NFL he is likely to be used in a supplementary way.

He will have a role to play at the next level though and if he can show he can create better separation at the catch point he could outperform his draft status. 

CHUBA HUBBARD – RB – OKLAHOMA STATE

Chuba Hubbard has been a productive running back for Oklahoma state. He is an explosive player with plenty of experience under his belt. 

Hubbard has good enough vision and rarely misses a running lane. He is patient as a runner, but has fantastic acceleration to explode into running lanes once they open. 

His low center of gravity means he earns yards after contact. Hubbard can accelerate through the first level and has the staying power to speed through the second and third level. Hubbard has a high football IQ and is a team player. He understands how to block and the importance of it. On top of this he is also highly efficient at it. It is one of his best traits. 

Hubbard’s weakness is his elusiveness. He isn’t able to make a play from nothing when the expected running lane doesn’t open or when the play breaks down. 

Hubbard also doesn’t affect the passing game as a receiver. He really needs to improve his ability to catch out of the backfield. A trait which is more and more essential for modern running backs. 

The game is made easy for him due to the competency of the Oklahoma State offensive line and is a reason why he has had so many productive years in college. He is a player who has accumulated a lot of yards, but that does not necessarily mean a seamless transition in the NFL. 

Overall, Hubbard is a fine player who will be useful in the pros, but he doesn’t have one physical trait that really pops on film.

Whether he will be a stand out back in the NFL is questionable, but he will be a player who will keep getting production and will keep putting up numbers without having flashy games.

CREED HUMPHREY – C – OKLAHOMA

Creed Humphrey takes part in future stars
OKLAHOMA CENTER CREED HUMPHREY. Image Credit: Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports

Humphrey has been one of the best centers in college football on an Oklahoma team desperate to succeed. Humphrey has been an essential leader for the Sooners and will likely be one of the top centers taken in 2021. 

As we have stated, Humphrey is a leader. He controls the o-line and understands the game really well. You can see him diagnosing the opposing defence pre-snap. He always appears to be in control of his body and it’s proven in the power he generates. 

He is able to generate great power and gets his hands up quickly. Humphrey gains control over his opponent early in the play and anchors and moves them whichever way he pleases. 

Humphrey could cope better against bull rushers especially as a center. It is the reason some are labeling him as a guard in the NFL. His footwork isn’t the quickest and you rarely see him move up to the second level, when watching his tape. Humphrey can also find himself in the ground more often than is liked.

But, with a bit of coaching, he has all the tools to be a success at the next level.

ASANTE SAMUEL JR – CB – FLORIDA STATE

Asante Samuel JR is in the spotlight this week. After another turbulent season at Florida State, a matchup against Clemson is not what the doctor ordered.

But, for Asante Samuel JR it is a chance to prove to NFL teams he can play in the big games.

Samuel JR is a good mover and stays with his man in man coverage. He is a cornerback that performs well in both zone and man coverage and is versatile enough to line up anywhere on the field.

Samuel JR is quick enough to stay with most receivers and has the football knowledge to read routes. He doesn’t bite to early in the tackle where he has good contact balance and strength.

Samuel JR is a small cornerback and as you would expect from a player who is only 5’10” and 184 lbs, he can struggle against bigger and taller receivers. It means he cannot be as physical as you would like when challenging the ball in the air and he doesn’t necessarily have the ball skills to bail him out. 

A good game against Trevor Lawrence and Clemson will be a statement from Asante JR and will show NFL teams he is worth a chance in the pros. 

DESMOND RIDDER – QB – CINCINNATI

CINCINNATI QUARTERBACK DESMOND RIDDER. IMAGE CREDIT: JUSTIN FORD

Cincinnati are having an unbelievable season and Ridder is reaping the benefits of it. He continues to shoot up draft boards and is now being talked about as a day 2 pick. 

Ridder lives his label of being a dual threat quarterback. He has a good arm and great athleticism. Ridder has the ability to make a play when there is seemingly nothing on. He can escape pressure and throw on the run. The ball comes out quick and shows decent accuracy.

When there is nothing on, he can tuck the ball in and take off on the run. His rushing ability is impressive and defences always need to equate for his running ability.

As with a lot of dual threat quarterbacks, he is quite often a one read QB. If the first read isn’t on, he can take off and run when there is a potential play on. Defensive backs in the NFL will be smart enough to know where the ball will be going and he will need to go through his progressions more. 

Ridder also doesn’t have the pocket presence of the quarterbacks at the top of this class and prefers to work outside of the pocket, rather than stay in it. It means he ends up forcing plays and therefore inevitably makes some bad decisions. 

Ridder has improved in 2020 and if Cincinnati continues their college playoff push, Ridder will be talked about more and more as we head towards the new year.

Which Future Stars will you have your eye on this week? Let us know over on Twitter @NinetynineYards and @Owain_Jones_ 

Feature Image Credit: ESPN

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