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2016 NFL Draft Watch: Week 12 (California at Stanford)

This week, we focus on a late slate game with Cal vs. Stanford. Let's take a closer look at some of these prospects that the Detroit Lions may target in next year's NFL Draft.

Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

California at #11 Stanford - 10:30 p.m. on ESPN


QB Jared Goff, 6-foot-4, 210 pounds (#16, Junior)

In recent years, there hasn't been many "stud" quarterback prospects to come out of college since Andrew Luck, and he isn't exactly having his best year as a pro. Last year's class set the bar pretty low, and this year is arguably the most underwhelming of them all. There are three prospects that I believe have separated themselves between the rest of the competition so far: Paxton Lynch, Connor Cook and Jared Goff.

Goff is a polarizing QB prospect that was once widely considered to be the consensus No. 1 QB. His draft hype has tapered off since then, but he remains a viable first/second-round option for any team looking for a QB. That's right. Goff is a guy that can fit in any NFL scheme, despite playing in Cal's shotgun/three-step offense. There are a few things that I love and hate about Goff as a prospect. Starting with the good, I truly admire Goff's pocket presence. He does a phenomenal job of rapidly working through his progressions and keeping his eyes downfield. His footwork can be a bit inconsistent, but for the most part, he stands tall in the pocket and manages to slide away from defenders with ease and step up into the pocket to finish his throws.

There are a few concerns I have with Goff as well. For one, he's going to have to bulk up a bit if he wants to hang around in the pocket with bigger NFL defenders attempting to murder him. As I mentioned before, Goff struggles to find consistency with his footwork. There are times where he has no problem stepping into a throw with a defender in his face, while other times, Goff will try to avoid the hit by sacrificing his footwork, resulting in under-throws and/or interceptions. This sort of ties in with my next concern, which is his questionable decision making.

Goff has already thrown a career-high 13 INTs this year, as well as 30 INTs throughout his career as a Junior. As is the case with every other QB out there, not all of those are Goff's fault. He doesn't exactly have a ton of talent surrounding him. Regardless, Goff could be a solid option for the Lions, depending on how far Goff could fall and whether Matthew Stafford is involved in their long-term plans.

Other players to watch:

RB Daniel Lasco, 6-foot-0, 210 pounds (#2, Senior)

LB Hardy Nickerson, 6-foot-0, 225 pounds (#47, RS Junior)

WR Kenny Lawler, 6-foot-3, 195 pounds (#4, RS Junior)


OT Kyle Murphy, 6-foot-7, 302 pounds (#78, Senior)

CBS Sports currently has Kyle Murphy ranked as their 65th overall prospect and eighth-best offensive tackle on their big board. I am not as high on the Stanford OT, and expect him to be selected in the Day 3 range. Murphy excels as a run blocker with heavy hands and a robust upper-body. However, his technique in pass protection could use a lot of work. Murphy made the move from right to left tackle after Andrus Peat declared for the NFL Draft last year, but I believe he is much better suited on the right side in the NFL.

Murphy lacks the desired athleticism to play LT and is consistently top-heavy when squaring up for his block. He struggles to keep his balance far too often in pass pro, which leads to him overextending and falling down. Murphy could also benefit from some added muscle in his lower-body. Drafting Murphy may not present an immediate upgrade at OT for the Lions, but it's important that they do their homework on each and every OT prospect out there and commit to adding more depth in the trenches.

Other players to watch:

ILB Blake Martinez, 6-foot-2, 245 pounds (#4, Senior)

WR Devon Cajuste, 6-foot-3, 227 pounds (#89, RS Senior)

QB Kevin Hogan, 6-foot-4, 218 pounds (#8, RS Senior)

OG Joshua Garnett, 6-foot-5, 321 pounds (#51, Senior)

OLB Kevin Anderson, 6-foot-4, 244 pounds (#48, RS Senior)

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