Stats & Info: Sam Montgomery

Top things to know: NFL Draft depth

April, 19, 2013
4/19/13
3:59
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With the NFL Draft looming, here’s a look at the top things to know related to depth at notable positions.

QB class lacking a megastar
There have been four quarterbacks taken in the first round of the NFL Draft each of the last two seasons. This year, Geno Smith is the top-rated quarterback in the class, but he has the lowest Scouts Inc. grade (91) of any top quarterback in the last nine seasons.

QB class has lots of shotgun/pistol experience
The NFL is trending toward spread tendencies, but the average NFL quarterback still attempted less than two-thirds of his passes after taking a snap from shotgun last season.

Four of the top quarterbacks in this draft class -- Landry Jones, Geno Smith, Ryan Nassib, and EJ Manuel -- attempted at least 88 percent of their pass attempts last season from either a shotgun or pistol formation.

Lacy leads a light-RB class
Eddie Lacy is the only running back projected to go in the first round by both Mel Kiper and Todd McShay. This would mark only the second time since 1985 that only one running back was drafted in the first round. It also happened in 2011.

In fact, since 2005, every NFL Draft but the 2011 one has had a running back drafted within the top 12 picks.

Lacy is the top running back prospect of the 2013 class according to Scouts Inc., but he was the beneficiary of one of the top offensive lines in football. Lacy gained 65 percent of his yards before initial contact and averaged 4.1 yards before contact per rush.

Receivers with lots of different skills available
An average of three wide receivers have been drafted in the first round of the NFL Draft over the last five seasons. Mel Kiper’s most recent mock draft has four. Todd McShay’s latest one has two.

Among the most notable leaders among wide receivers, Tavon Austin led AQ-school receivers with 947 yards after the catch, Terrance Williams led FBS receivers with 27 receptions on passes thrown 20 yards or longer, and DeAndre Hopkins and Stedman Bailey led FBS with 10 touchdown receptions on throws 20 yards or longer.

Teams looking for multi-purpose receivers should know that Austin and Cordarrelle Patterson were the only players in FBS with at least 300 rushing yards, 600 receiving yards and 500 return yards in 2012.

Tight ends that can go long
Tyler Eifert and Zach Ertz highlight a tight end class with the ability to stretch the field vertically.

Eifert and Ertz combined for 45 receptions on passes thrown 15 yards or longer over the last two seasons, including five deep touchdowns.

A rich defensive draft
According to Scouts Inc., defensive players make up 19 of the top 32 overall prospects. Todd McShay’s latest mock draft has 12 defensive front seven players taken in the first round of the draft, one behind the 2011 and 1974 NFL drafts for the most in the common draft era.

A look at some of the collegiate leaders in some notable areas:

LSU defensive end Sam Montgomery had three sacks against a double team, most among the 35 defensive FBS prospects rated 80 or higher.

Among the top-10 defensive end prospects as rated by Scouts, Inc., Florida State's Bjoern Werner had the most sacks on a standard pass rush (12) and Georgia's Jarvis Jones had the most from a blitz (7).

Purdue's Kawann Short led all FBS defensive tackle prospects rated 70 or higher with seven sacks and 13 run stuffs last season. A “run stuff” is a tackle on a rushing play that ends up in negative or zero yardage.

Offensive improvement key for LSU in 2013

April, 11, 2013
4/11/13
9:16
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AP Photo/John RaouxLSU's success will be contingent on Zach Mettenberger stepping up in 2013.
With the college basketball season in the books, College Football Live embarks on its Spring Bus Tour, visiting eight schools over the next two weeks. Today we take a trip to check out the LSU Tigers.

Since Les Miles took over as head coach prior to the 2005 season, LSU has been among the winningest programs in the country. The Tigers’ 85 wins under Les Miles are more than any school from a BCS-AQ conference.

But LSU’s 2012 season lost some momentum before it even got started when 2011 Heisman finalist Tyrann Mathieu was kicked off the team in August.

The Tigers lost to Florida and Alabama during the regular season, failing to hold leads in each game. In the Chick-fil-A Bowl, it was a similar scenario as LSU was outscored 12-0 by Clemson in fourth quarter and lost 25-24.

Looking ahead to 2013
LSU took a bigger hit in terms of underclassmen declaring for the NFL draft than any other school. Eleven Tigers have declared in the hopes of starting their pro careers.

Among the big returnees is quarterback Zach Mettenberger, who threw for 2,609 yards and 12 touchdowns last season.

Former Baltimore Ravens Offensive Coordinator Cam Cameron accepted the same position at LSU with hopes of making the offense more dynamic.

In the three seasons in which LSU made the BCS Championship Game (2003, ’07, ’11), the team averaged 36.1 points. In all other seasons since 2003, the Tigers averaged 29.6 points, including 29.8 last season.

On the defensive side, ends Barkevious Mingo and Sam Montgomery declared for the NFL draft. They were two of the reasons that LSU was able to rush four instead of five and regularly drop seven into pass coverage.

When rushing four, Mingo and Montgomery combined for 37 of the Tigers’ 71 quarterback hurries and 10 sacks, and LSU allowed only seven touchdown passes in 348 attempts.

They said it
"We'll have a different view of the quarterback position now. It will enable us to throw the football more effectively. We'll throw the football down the field more efficiently."
-- Les Miles (looking ahead to 2012 season)

Mettenberger struggled throwing downfield in conference play last season.

He completed less than 33 percent of his passes of 15 yards or longer against SEC opponents and was less efficient than the duo of Jordan Jefferson and Jarrett Lee in 2011.

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