Scouting the top prospects available in the NFL draft that will be held April 27-29 in Philadelphia ((asterisk)-denotes early entrant):
(asterisk)Deshaun Watson, 6-foot-2, 221 pounds, Clemson
Notable: In two national championship games against Alabama, Watson passed for 825 yards and seven touchdowns with one interception.
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Sum-it-up-in-a-sentence scouting report: College superstar and charismatic leader, but pro scouts are still a bit skeptical because of accuracy issues, a penchant for forcing throws, and size and height that is a bit less than ideal.
Outlook: When Watson is selected will be the story of the first day of the draft. Projections seem to be all over the board, from top 10 to slipping out of the first round.
(asterisk)Mitchell Trubisky, 6-2, 222, North Carolina
Notable: In his lone season as the Tar Heels’ No. 1 quarterback, Trubisky completed 68 percent of his passes with 30 touchdowns and six interceptions.
Sum-it-up-in-a-sentence scouting report: Trubisky has the arm, athleticism, and quick delivery NFL teams love, but one year as a starter in spread offense means he has a lot to learn.
Outlook: Most likely quarterback to be drafted in first round.
(asterisk)DeShone Kizer, 6-4, 233, Notre Dame
Notable: Kizer took over as a starter early in 2015 because of an injury and was a revelation in a 10-win season for the Irish. Notre Dame slipped to four wins last season, though Kizer’s play was not demonstrably worse.
Sum-it-up-in-a-sentence scouting report: The decision making and touch need work, but Kizer has size and arm strength you cannot teach.
Outlook: In a quarterback class that is not blowing away scouts, Kizer could be a late first-round pick.
(asterisk)Patrick Mahomes II, 6-2, 225, Texas Tech
Notable: Running the Red Raiders’ Air Raid offense, Mahomes passed for 5,052 yards and 41 touchdowns last season, with 10 interceptions and a 65.7 completion percentage.
Sum-it-in-a-sentence scouting report: Dynamic playmaker and athlete, who needs to be reined in a bit.
Outlook: The postseason draft process was good to Mahomes, who could squeeze into the first round.
(asterisk)Leonard Fournette, 6-0, 240, LSU
Notable: An ankle injury limited him to seven games in 2016 and he ran for over 100 yards in five of them. Ran for 1,953 yards and 22 touchdowns as a sophomore.
Sum-it-up-in-a-sentence scouting report: With power and speed to spare, the only nit to pick is elusiveness.
Outlook: Top-10 pick, unless NFL’s running back value appraisals drag him down.
(asterisk)Dalvin Cook, 5-10, 210, Florida State
Notable: Averaged 6.5 yards per carry in his college career, with three 1,000-yard plus seasons.
Sum-it-up-in-a-sentence scouting report: Home-run hitter with big-time acceleration, but ball security has been a problem and there are questions about his ability to…