It’s hilariously early of course, but our Dan Kader projects five Bama players to go in next year’s first round, with Hand landing in Pittsburgh:
With Jonathan Allen and Dalvin Tomlinson off to the NFL, Hand should see more playing time in 2017 and live up to his blue-chip billing. For Pittsburgh, Stephon Tuitt could be after a big contract soon, so Hand would act as depth or an eventual replacement.
As the Tide lose talent to the NFL, they roll in fresh blue-chip players like Hand and four-star LB Christian Miller as feature roles in the team’s front seven after largely having roles as spot defenders. It also allows them to do things such as redshirt four-star players like Quinnen Williams and grayshirt a talented recruit like Jarez Parks.
Plus, he spent his last two years playing for Bo Pelini, so it’s not like any NFL coaches are going to be able to hurt his feelings should he screw up.
Rivers was very much a big fish in a small pond as an FCS standout. While Youngstown State was one of the former Division I-AA’s best programs — they were national runners-up in 2016 — they still played a schedule that included teams like Duquesne, Robert Morris, and other awful football Cheap Jerseys In Toronto programs outside the western Pennsylvania corridor. On the plus side, he Cheap Jerseys NFL Nike did manage sacks against Illinois and Pittsburgh in FBS showdowns in 2014 and 2015.
While his Combine numbers were terrific, Rivers can play stiff on the field and struggles to get his feet underneath him for fluid lateral movement. Better and bigger tackles can wrap him up and keep him engaged, effectively swallowing him for stretches. He’ll still explode for big plays, but he’ll also go through lulls where he won’t make an impact for long stretches of time.