Leading up to this month’s NFL Draft, we’ll be taking a look at each ACC‘s school’s prospects and where they’re slated to be chosen. While 50 ACC players were invited to the NFL Draft Combine, those not in attendance also have ample opportunity to hear their name called between April 25 through 27.
Virginia‘s program is loaded with young talent, but lucky for them, most of it is still on-campus. For the few departing Hoos, however, there will be plenty of uncertainty at the pro level. Several players could be drafted this weekend, but where they go is mostly a mystery. As Mike London’s image continues to form for the UVa football team, this draft is giving us the final remnants of Al Groh’s talent pool — with some returns greater than others.
Oday Aboushi, OT, Senior (Projected: Fourth Round)
Aboushi’s strength lies primarily in his size (6’6″ and 308 pounds), which he uses to his advantage against smaller defenders. As far as athleticism, however, scouts have knocked him for not being overly fast (5.45 40-yard dash time) or quick with his hands or feet. As SB Nation’s Streaking the Lawn has also noted, he can find himself a bit outmatched with NFL-caliber talent and struggles with secondary moves from relentless defenders. He’s both a competent pass- and run-blocker, but ideally, his driving ability makes him more of a major asset in the running game. Obviously, the rough year for UVa and its running game didn’t help Aboushi’s stock, though he’s still doing well on many boards around the league due to the aforementioned size as well as his aggressive style.
Steve Greer, ILB, Senior (Projected: Undrafted)
Undersized at 6’2″ and 230 pounds, Greer projects as a ‘tweener at the next level — failing to really fit the mold of any one position. He’s not large enough to be a pro linebacker and not fast enough (5.04 40-yard dash) or experienced enough in coverage to transition to the secondary. But that said, he’s still a tenacious defender who’s garnered a reputation as an effective run-stopper with a knack for making solid first contact. Starting out as a special-teamer in camp this summer, he’ll have ample opportunities to make a roster, and eventually work himself into special packages on defense, too.
Kevin Parks, RB, Senior (Projected: Undrafted)
Parks is another UVa player who fails to truly fit a mold. At just 5’8″ and 200 pounds, he would appear to be a quick, breakaway-type runner and receiver out of the backfield, but with just a 4.52 40-yard dash, that’s simply not the case. Still, he has repeatedly shown off an ability to accelerate at the line of scrimmage and break through initial tacklers — something every pro team will find valuable. Adding another wrinkle to his game in 2012, Parks caught 24 passes in an offense that struggled to move the ball at times. He’s got some upside as a potential third-down back, though that may be his ceiling in the NFL unless he gains a bit more speed.
LaRoy Reynolds, OLB, Senior (Projected: Undrafted)
Reynolds is similar to Greer in that he’s viewed as slightly undersized (6’2″ and 230 pounds), but he’s got that quickness (4.6 40-yard dash) that could help him excel at the outside linebacker position in a 4-3 scheme. Teams have cited his effort as a concern, as well as his technique, but based on his showing at the Hoos’ pro day, some of those issues may have been put to rest. At pro day and throughout his career, he’s shown himself to be a vicious and driven tackler when focused, and it’s that sort of shut-down, first-contact stopping ability that could earn him a roster spot this summer.