Reads Listens Views 12/27/2013

This week at RLV: Notes from the RSP Film Room, the Internet’s Dark Lord, Mister Rogers, and Classic Hip-Hop.

Views – 10 Mister Rogers Quotes For Bad Days


Here’s the link to the rest.


If you’re new to the Rookie Scouting Portfolio blog, welcome. Every Friday, I post links to things I’m checking out when I’m online. You may not like everything listed here, but you’re bound to like something. It’s also my chance to thank you for reading my work and encourage you to follow the RSP blog and buy the Rookie Scouting Portfolio publication.

For those of you new to the Rookie Scouting Portfolio, the publication is available every April 1. You can learn more about the RSP here. If you want to see samples of the play-by-play notes I take to write the analysis, you can find them here. And to download past versions of the publication (2006-2012), go here.

Remember, 10 percent of each sale is donated to Darkness to Light, a non-profit devoted to preventing and addressing sexual abuse through community training in schools, religious groups, and a variety of civic groups across the U.S. Here is what the RSP donated to D2L this year. According to D2L, the RSP’s 2013 donation amount was enough to train 250 adults in communities across the country.  I will have an announcement about the 2014 RSP in January. Stay tuned.

RSP Film Room Takes

Bishop Sankey is part of a class of mature runners who may not have flash, but run with substance. Photo by James Santelli.
Bishop Sankey is part of a class of mature runners who may not have flash, but run with substance. Photo by James Santelli.

The Christmas/New Years break gives me an opportunity to hole up in my office and go through marathon sessions of games. Here are some quick takes on players I’ve seen in recent days that you might find worthwhile. To see who else I’ve studied thus far for the 2014 publication available April 1, check out the running list.

Former Oregon tight end Colt Lyerla may not be the best athlete at the position in this class, but he has the best combination of all-around skills if you’re a team seeking a move tight end who can approximate what we saw from Aaron Hernandez in New England. He has the fluid athleticism of a large running back with H-Back skills. When I watch Lyerla play, I understand why there are teams willing to take a chance on him in light of what we’ve seen on and off the field with Hernandez. More than anything, I just want to see Lyerla change his life so he doesn’t waste it – football or no football.

Speaking of New England Patriots tight ends, UMass’ Rob Blanchflower has the dimensions of Rob Gronkowski. There’s going to be a lot of discussion about this tight end at the Senior Bowl because of his dimensions and enough fluid athleticism to exploit the seam. How well he catches the ball against tight coverage and imminent contact will enhance or derail those stylistic comparisons.

A project at the tight end position with some athletic upside is BYU’s Kaneakua Friel. He’s not ready for the NFL, but he has the raw tools to develop into a contributor in all phases of the game.

There’s a lot of underground draftnik love for Southern Mississippi receiver Francisco Llanos. I stumbled across comparisons to him and Victor Cruz. After studying multiple games, I understand the motivation to make that stylistic comparison, but I won’t be one of those writers linking the two players. Llanos has to improve his consistency as a pass catcher and I have questions about his playing speed. I don’t think he’ll be drafted.

In fact, if you’re seeking some underrated slot receiver candidates put Erik Lora near the top of my list. The Eastern Illinois receiver makes plays. As for less productive players in Llanos’ tier who I believe have as much or more to offer are Michigan’s Drew Dileo or BYU’s J.D. Falslev.  

The lesser known receiver enjoyed watching was Coastal Carolina receiver Matt Hazel. Fluid, athletic, and sure-handed.

Speaking of sure-handed, I enjoyed watching Arizona State running back Marion Grice. Between Grice, Bishop Sankey and Ka’Deem Carey, what this class lacks in overall flash, it compensates with maturity between the tackles. Grice is an excellent receiver with basic technique, strong effort, and good diagnostic skills as a pass protector. There are some plays that I think I see speed and acceleration from Grice that’s NFL-caliber and others where it seems absent. I look forward to seeing if I can get a better handle on it at the Senior Bowl.

In Case You Missed It/What’s Ahead at The RSP Blog

  • Boiler Room: CU WR Paul Richardson – See the anatomy of a sick catch.
  • Futures: TE Jace Amaro (Saturday)
  • Futures: DE Jadeveon Clowney – Why I don’t think “mailing it in” would have matter if that’s what Clowney did this year. And I don’t think he did.
  • Senior Bowl Reports (late January) – I decided to apply for media credentials as the RSP rather than do joint work with other groups. You’ll find most of my takes and practice reports here.


Reads (Football)

Reads (Non-Football)


The marimba solo after the statement of the melody is fantastic.

Views – The Root of The Problem

They money speaks louder than the words. Corporations may be filled with human beings, but they don’t behave as human beings. Until we recognize this difference, we’re stuck with our outrage.


Rest in peace Yusef Lateef

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