Thank you for making 2015 our best year yet, both at Rotoworld and this section specifically. We continue to improve each year and attempt to bring you specialty content you can’t find anywhere else as well as sticking to our foundation, which is aggregating news. The additions of Thor Nystrom and Mark Lindquist have been huge, specifically during bowl season. Click on any of the links below to see all of our top-50 player reviews:
As a look back, here are the top searched players on Rotoworld’s NFL Draft/College Football section in 2015.
1. Todd Gurley - It was a news filled final season for Gurley at Georgia. He started it on a tear, rushing for over 130 yards in four of the school’s first five games. Then he faced a suspension and suffered a knee injury once returning to the field. That knee injury was a huge storyline in the draft process, with many questioning if a team in today’s NFL would select a running back, coming off a knee injury, in the first-round. The Rams did, and Gurley has responded.
2. Marcus Mariota - The 2014 Heisman Trophy winner and No. 2 overall draft pick. “Mariota” and “pro style” were mentioned in many questions and statements leading up to the draft. Many felt he was not worthy of a top five selection and/or he should not start immediately in the NFL. Plenty of trade speculation was thrown around on draft day, but Mariota was ultimately selected with the second pick by Tennessee and has looked very solid.
3. Jameis Winston - So many storylines here. Jameis won the Heisman as a redshirt freshman and entered the 2014 season with the spotlight on him. His play was extremely uneven, throwing a number of interceptions during the first halves of games, then playing at a high level resulting in comeback wins. Add on some crab legs and a draft process that resulted in Jameis selected No. 1, and it is no surprise he lands this high on this list.
4. Breshad Perriman - This is a bit of a surprise. Perriman was an early entrant from UCF. Once evaluators started checking his tape out, many were intrigued with what they saw. Perriman is a 6’2/212 lbs outside receiver who can run, which was put on display with a 4.30 pro day forty. Perriman was selected in the first-round by the Ravens, but an injury kept him sidelined during his rookie year.
5. Dorial Green-Beckham - During the year of 2014, Green-Beckham transferred to Oklahoma, applied for immediate eligibility and was denied, meaning he could only practice with the Sooners. Because of his past, DGB faced many questions during the draft process and was ultimately selected in the second-round, even earning Calvin Johnson physical comparisons along the way.
6. Shawn Oakman - The only defensive player in the top 20. Oakman was once known as Oakmonster, and now his play is closer to Oakmeme. Oakman could have entered the draft as a redshirt sophomore, then declined again as a redshirt junior. Now, as a redshirt senior, it is obvious he was a better player when he played off the bench in a rotation.
7. Braxton Miller - Miller was expected to enter the 2014 season as the school’s starting QB. A shoulder injury sidelined him all season, and the combination of J.T. Barrett and Cardale Jones helped take Ohio State to a Championship victory. Miller announced he would transition to receiver this offseason. He seemed like a natural, despite what the statistics show. However, Urban Meyer still attempted to manufacture touches for Miller in each game.
8. Kevin White - After a breakout 2014 season at West Virginia, White followed it with a ridiculous Combine workout in early 2015. Many ended up ranking White as the top receiver in his draft class, and the Bears selected him with the No. 7 overall pick. He sustained an injury and never saw the field during his rookie season.
9. Duke Johnson - The University of Miami running back seemed to be better liked among internet evaluators than NFL evaluators, as Johnson was selected by the Browns in the third-round. Reporters quoted anonymous scouts saying Johnson would mainly be a passing down back in the NFL, and he was used as such during his rookie season.
10. Leonard Fournette - Most of these names are plays who were selected in the 2015 NFL Draft. Fournette is not eligible until 2017, but that did not stop him from dominating the first few weeks of college football coverage. Fournette was this year’s Heisman frontrunner, then ran into Alabama.
11. Tevin Coleman - Coleman was a favorite of metrics evaluators, posting a 4.40 and 2,036 rushing yards during his final season at Indiana. Everyone agreed Coleman was one of the best big play runners in the draft, reeling off a high amount of long runs. No one dislikes long runs, but there were legitimate questions about Coleman’s ability to stay up on first contact. The Falcons drafted him in the third-round.
12. Melvin Gordon - The “other” first round running back. Gordon rushed for 2,587 yards and 29 touchdowns during his final season at Wisconsin. It became clear during the final weeks before last spring’s draft that Gordon would be a top-20 selection. Ultimately the Chargers drafted him at No. 15.
13. Trevone Boykin - TCU’s starting QB had a great connection with WR Josh Doctson over the last few years. Boykin opened the season with 19 touchdown passes over the first five games of the season. From a draft perspective, some see Boykin as a receiver (where he played early in his career) and some believe he should be given a chance at quarterback.
14. DeVante Parker - Parker missed much of his final season at Louisville due to a broken foot. He was frequently ranked as the No. 3 receiver in the 2015 class and his draft slot, No. 14 to Miami, fulfilled that prophecy. He specialized in contested catches and elevating for the football in one on one situations.
15. La'el Collins - This was one of the more unique stories we have ever seen, and on draft week no less. Collins looked great at the Senior Bowl, and I ranked him as the top offensive lineman in the class. Then comes draft week, when police wanted to question him regarding his relationship with a woman who was recently murdered. This apparently terrified the NFL, despite Collins never being a suspect. Collins went from being a first-round pick to going undrafted, thanks to a bit of strategy from his representation. He signed with the Cowboys and started as a rookie.
16. Jeremy Langford - Surprisingly, Langford posted one of the best Combine workouts among running backs, the second best SPARQ score behind Ameer Abdullah. Langford was a workhorse during his final season at Michigan State and was selected in the fourth-round by the Bears.
17. Amari Cooper - The first receiver drafted, fourth overall by the Raiders, had a very clean draft process. All evaluators liked what they saw, he is athletic and posted plenty of production. The only criticisms were an above average drop rate and a lack of consistency on contested catches.
18. Jay Ajayi - There was a lot to like about Ajayi’s game. He produced big plays, is a solid receiver and even showed power to create yards. Then reports surfaced about a severe knee issue that multiple teams red-flagged. Ajayi never missed a game, but teams were obviously concerned, as the talented ball carrier lasted until the fifth-round.
19. William Fuller - The Notre Dame receiver is one of the best big play threats in all of college football. In November, Fuller told reporters he would be returning to school for the 2016 season. When asked again, he “squirmed.” Then Fuller understandably revealed he will enter the NFL Draft. Team will need to live through his drops to see the big plays.
20. Devin Smith - It is interesting to see Smith’s name fall right after Fuller’s. Some believe they are very similar. I would agree in terms of the role and areas of the field they will be drafted for. I think Smith is a superior contested catch receiver. He was selected in the second-round by the Jets and dealt with an injury early on.
21. Baker Mayfield
22. Cardale Jones
23. Everett Golson
24. Jaelen Strong
25. Javorius Allen
26. Ezekiel Elliott
27. Devin Funchess
28. Nelson Agholor
29. Bryce Petty
30. Ameer Abdullah
31. Clive Walford
32. David Cobb
33. Maxx Williams
34. Sammie Coates
35. Connor Cook
36. Brett Hundley
37. Jacob Coker
38. Randy Gregory
39. T.J. Yeldon
40. Derrick Henry
41. Stefon Diggs
42. Ereck Flowers
43. Laquon Treadwell
44. Travis Wilson
45. Jared Goff
46. Phillip Dorsett
47. Noah Spence
48. J.T. Barrett
49. Tyler Lockett