Three College Football Players the Eagles Should Watch
This is the penultimate week before many conferences hold their conference championship games. With Louisville falling to Houston Thursday night, the top four teams to make the College Football Playoff are far from a lock. And even after a chaotic Saturday last week, anything is possible. This week, there are three top-25 games on tap, and all three have huge implications on perennial births in conference championship games.
Here are three players Eagles fans should keep a close eye on during today’s slate of games.
1. Corey Davis, WR, Western Michigan
This week’s opponent: vs. Buffalo — 3:30 p.m. (ESPNU)
Davis could be the next great star wide receiver from a Group of Five school, as he has potential to be selected in the first two rounds of this year’s NFL Draft. So far with the Broncos, the senior wideout has caught for 1,029 yards and touchdowns, and should put up big numbers today against the Bulls. He has a very athletic frame, while also having the speed to go deep and also being able to change directions quickly. He is knowledgable in his routes, and includes plenty of stutter-steps and shoulder fakes. But similar to Dorial Green-Beckham, Davis doesn’t use his height and leaping ability to win tough passes. If he can get aggressive in some of those situations, he will certainly be a dangerous wide receiver in the NFL.
2. Adoree’ Jackson, CB, USC
This week’s opponent: @ UCLA — 10:30 p.m. (ESPN)
Jackson’s draft stock rose last week, as he intercepted Washington quarterback Jake Browning twice in USC’s upset win over the Huskies. He’s got high-end speed at corner and is very fluid when he opens up his hips. His ball awareness skills are great as well. Although he’s an extremely athletic player, Jackson can give up on some plays due to focus and technique. He’s also small for his position, and even one NFL scout said in the Los Angeles Times he may not play corner, but instead at wide receiver. The same scout also said he’s more of a second round pick prospect, although he might get selected midway through the first round.
3. Christian McCaffrey, RB, Stanford
This week’s opponent: @ California — 5:30 p.m (Pac 12 Network)
McCaffrey hasn’t had an explosive season like he did last season, but he still has over 1,000 yards rushing this season. And in each of his last three games, he’s rushed for over 130 yards. McCaffrey has a unique skill set, similar to Darren Sporles, as a runner, a receiver, and as a returner. He has superb vision and is able to stay patient to find holes to run through. He also has one of the better stiff arms in all of football. One thing he really needs to work on is his pass protection technique. Although he can pick up his assignments, the technique is not there sometimes. McCaffrey is projected as a late first or second round pick.
Game Of The Week: No. 22 Washington State @ No. 10 Colorado — 3:30 p.m. (FOX)
If you take a look at the Pac 12 standings in both divisions, these two teams are at the top. This could be the very same meeting in two weeks in the conference championship game. Luke Falk and the Cougars are one of the nation’s most exciting offenses, while Colorado has come out of nowhere back to relevance this season. Head coach Mike Leach has done a wonderful job turning the Cougar program aronud the past few seasons, and a win against the Buffaloes would give him all the momentum entering next week’s Apple Cup against Washington.
Honorable Mentions: No. 23 Florida @ No. 16 LSU (1 p.m., SEC Network); Virginia Tech @ Notre Dame (3:30 p.m., NBC); No. 9 Oklahoma @ No. 14 West Virginia (8 p.m, ABC); No. 13 USC @ UCLA (10:30 p.m., ESPN)
Here are the players we’ve previously highlighted:
Wayne Gallman, RB, Clemson
Juju Smith-Schuster, WR, USC
Cameron Sutton, CB, Tennessee
Sidney Jones, CB, Washington
Tarean Folston, RB, Notre Dame
Malachi Dupre, WR, LSU
Cooper Kupp, WR, Eastern Washington (Division I-AA)
Cordrea Tankersley, CB, Clemson
Royce Freeman, RB, Oregon
Corey Clement, RB, Wisconsin
Dede Westbrook, WR, Oklahoma
Marquis Haynes, OLB/DE, Ole Miss
Zach Cunningham, OLB, Vanderbilt
Jeremy McNichols, RB, Boise State
Damore’ea Stringfellow, WR, Ole Miss
John Ross, WR, Washington
Jourdan Lewis, CB, Michigan
Elijah Hood, RB, North Carolina
Donnel Pumphrey, RB, San Diego State
Mike Williams, WR, Clemson
Tre’Davious White, CB, LSU
Teez Tabor, CB, Florida
Josh Reynolds, WR, Texas A&M
Nick Chubb, RB, Georgia
Samaje Perine, RB, Oklahoma
Travis Rudolph, WR, Florida State
Marlon Humphrey, CB, Alabama
Isaiah Ford, WR, Virginia Tech
Desmond King, CB, Iowa
Jalen Hurd, RB, Tennessee