Bralon Addison stars at Houston NFTC
HOUSTON -- Though the turnout was a little leaner than some other NFTC tour stops, the Houston NFTC still hosted a talented group of players. The slightly smaller numbers meant more reps for many players and the competition was strong.
The ESPNU 150 Watch List athlete was arguably the top skill performer at the camp. He is an explosive but undersized dual-threat quarterback who could project to running back, cornerback or wide receiver at the next level. Addison worked out with the receivers and had a strong outing. He answered some questions about his possible projection to that position and displayed nice upside. He presents a smaller target with less than ideal height, but has a sturdy build, excellent foot quickness and the burst and acceleration to pull away from defenders coming out of his breaks. He has good and quick hands and consistently extended and caught the ball away from his body. He didn't catch everything, but he was highly competitive and no ball went without an effort. For a smaller receiver he displayed the ability to go up and get the ball and once he has it in his hands, he has the tools be dangerous in space. He was verbally committed to Oklahoma State, but just recently re-opened his recruitment. He said he had about a dozen offers and was still considering the Cowboys along with his other offers, which include Texas A&M, Baylor and Texas Tech.
Curtis Riser (DeSoto, Texas/DeSoto)
The Texas commit had an excellent day and one of the better performances we have seen from an offensive lineman on the camp circuit this spring. One of the things that jumps out about the ESPNU 150 Watch List guard when you see him in person is his skinny ankles and that, from the knees down, he doesn't look like a kid who carries as much weight as he does. During pass-protection drills against a good group of D-linemen, Riser was consistent and dominant. He had a good punch and was active throughout the play with his hands, continuing to punch and keep his hands on the rusher. He maintained a good base, played with good bend and was able to slide his feet and mirror. You would like to see him sit back a bit more, but overall Riser did a very nice job of mixing good technique with a competitive nature. Not surprisingly, Riser took home the O-line MVP.
B.J. Singleton (Destrehan, La./Destrehan)
After liking what we saw of Singleton on film early in the evaluation process, we were interested to see him compete at the NFTC. The defensive end had a good outing, backing up what we saw on film, and took home the D-line MVP for his efforts. During one-on-ones, he was consistently productive. He not only showed a good initial burst, but also some savvy in attacking blockers. He displayed an array of moves and when tackles would overset, he would counter back inside. There seemed to be some thought process to what he was doing instead of just blindly attacking upfield. When we first saw Singleton on film, his offer list was limited, but he said he has since picked up more offers and right now, Arkansas and Tennessee are the two standing out.
Trey Williams (Houston/Dekaney)
The diminutive Williams impressed us as more than just a runner at the event. He lacks ideal measurables, but is very quick and displays great balance and lateral footwork. He still needs some polish as a receiver, but did a good job of catching the ball. We expected to see a quick and elusive runner, but were impressed by his ability as a blocker. On film, he runs with a decisive and aggressive style despite his small stature, so his toughness as a blocker was not much of a surprise. Still, we were a little impressed with how effective and sound he was. He did a good job of getting hands on defenders and at one point even snatched the rushing linebacker's hip. He kept a good base, didn't lunge and with his lateral ability was able to easily stay in front of the rusher. Obviously, there is the concern Williams could get overpowered in pads, but this is a tough kid who displayed on film and at Saturday's event that he shouldn't be discounted because of his size.
Corey Thompson (Missouri City, Texas/Elkins)
The Texas A&M commit is a tall and rangy prospect with long arms and offers some versatility. He told us he was headed to Texas A&M as a receiver and safety and it would be determined later how he would best be used. He spent the camp working with the receivers and displayed good ball skills. He showed the ability to extend those long arms and snatch the ball as well as the ability to go up and get it. But after watching Thompson on tape and now in a camp setting, we feel his best fit in College Station will be at safety. On film he is a defender who fills hard and is tough against the run. With his ball skills and athleticism, he can be tough in coverage against tight ends and backs. Thompson had a good day and could certainly contribute at receiver, but we feel his greatest promise is on defense.
Notes and observations• We were looking forward to seeing West Virginia commit Ford Childress (Houston/Kinkaid), but unfortunately the Watch List quarterback was a no-show. Among the signal-callers, Alec Morris (Allen, Texas/Allen) took home the QB MVP. He is a good-sized kid with a pocket passer's build. He displayed very good arm strength, a fairly quick release and was able to zip the ball around all day. He displayed pretty good feet, but going through drills you could see there is room for improvement in his footwork. Morris is a bit a raw in some aspects, but he has some physical tools to work with.
• D'Shaie Landor (Lafayette, La./Teurlings Catholic) is a quarterback who shows some promise on film and in person. He lacks ideal height and has a lean build, but he possesses good feet, athleticism and a quick delivery. He does have some parts of his game that could use work (like his release point) and his size could be an issue, as well. He has no offers and some schools have discussed a different position. He said SMU, Western Kentucky and Tulane have shown some serious interest in him as a quarterback. Landor is an intriguing prospect to keep an eye on.
• Ryan Flannigan (Missouri City, Texas/Thurgood Marshall) is an outside linebacker with a nice reach and a frame to develop. He displays good quickness and agility. He has some raw tools that could allow him to provide pressure as a blitzer, but needs to be more active with his hands and expand his pass-rush arsenal. He was productive in coverage displaying potential as a zone and man coverage defender.
• The event took place at the University of Houston and a pair of Cougar O-line commits took part. Blake Herman (Needville, Texas/Needville) immediately looked uncomfortable in pass protection, but said his first rep in the drill was his first attempt at pass protection (he comes from a Wing-T offense). He is raw and needs much work, but he battled and showed a little improvement as the drill went on. Future teammate Jacob Abels (Sugarland, Texas/Fort Bend Austin) was further along and solid in the drill. He also displayed some upside.
• We've seen cornerback Trevon Stewart (Patterson, La./Patterson) on the camp circuit before and he continued to impress. He is a competitive kid who does not have great height, but has a fairly thick and muscular build as well as good hips and quick feet. Every time we see him he performs well and Stewart has the tools to be a good, productive college corner. He said he has picked up offers from Auburn, Clemson, Nebraska and Pitt since we last saw him.
• We liked TCU commit Joey Hunt (El Campo, Texas/El Campo) on film. He is a defensive tackle with a wide, thick, old-school Jim Burt kind of build. In pass-rush drills he was active with his hands and was able to set blockers up and counter.
• Big defensive tackle Marrick Charles (Destrehan, La./Destrehan) showed some flashes during one-on-ones and was the only one to have some success against Riser. He displayed good explosion and was violent with his hands. He does need to watch how he adds size and may benefit from reworking his frame some, but he raised his profile some with his performance.
• Anthony Smith (Houston/Westfield) is a defensive tackle with marginal height, but a thick build who can be explosive and active with his weapons. Smith would be getting more attention if he was taller.
• Ashton Shumpert (Tupelo, Miss./Tupelo) is a promising Class of 2013 safety/outside linebacker prospect. He is a physically good looking kid who worked out with the defensive backs, but he may be headed toward linebacker, which he will likely grow into and appears a better fit for his skill set.
• Deon Hollins (Houston/Yates), a defensive end prospect, showed some promise. He displayed a good initial burst, a good reach, wide shoulders and a frame that could support more good size.
Craig Haubert is the recruiting coordinator for ESPN Recruiting and has more than a decade of coaching experience. Don't forget to follow him on Twitter.
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