Tracking NFL Draft Scout's Top 50: Availability may soon trump ability

Aug 27, 2022; Tallahassee, Florida, USA; Florida State Seminoles wide receiver Johnny Wilson (14) catches a pass against Duquesne Dukes. Credit:  Melina Myers-USA TODAY Sports
Aug 27, 2022; Tallahassee, Florida, USA; Florida State Seminoles wide receiver Johnny Wilson (14) catches a pass against Duquesne Dukes. Credit: Melina Myers-USA TODAY Sports

After five weeks for most teams, some things are becoming clear in the NFL Draft Scout player ratings. And some things are not.

Starting with Alabama's terrifying outside linebacker Will Anderson still as No. 1, there are no changes among the top 19 players, although a few are on the edge and will need to show something to get a good midterm grade next week.

Three of our first six players and six of the Top 50 have injury or health issues, some hopefully short term and some recurring, but at least two have barely been on the field -- No. 6, wide receiver Jaxon Smith-Njigba and No. 39, Alabama wide receiver Tyler Harrell.

Smith-Njigba must at least suit up to hold on to that No. 6 spot we have gifted him for a few weeks base on, ah, potential? Oh,  yea, there  was that 4.24-second clocking in 40 yards, back when he could run. We are as hamstrung as he is with his rating.

Also of major curiosity, LSU receiver Kayshon Boutte, formerly in the top 10 and now No. 21, was used differently last week, but just wasn’t impressive. Again, something is amiss.

It will be hard to keep them ahead of players who have been sensational, such as Florida State's huge wide receiver, Johnny Wilson. This 6-6, 235-pound pass catcher - don't call him a tight end - caught six for 142 yards and a touchdown against a tough Wake Forest team.

No. 15 cornerback Emmanuel Forbes of Mississippi State and No. 33 cornerback Clark Phillips III of Utah literally stole the show with their performances last week.

Forbes, seldom tested this year, showed Texas A&M why. Targeted four times, he gave up one five-yard catch, broke up another and intercepted two. Phillips III was targeted by Oregon State 11 times, gave up six catches for 55 yards. But he stole three interceptions.

Joining NFL Draft Scout's Top 50 for the first time this season are Michigan center Olusegun Oluwatimi at No. 48 and, in a long-overdue move, running back Zach Charbonnet at No. 50. He is a key reason UCLA is unbeaten.

Here is a look at how we rank them after five games. Unless certain players step up, expect changes in the midterms next week.


Rating.  Player, Class, Position, College, Ht, Wt, Proj Rd

{+} = Injury or health concern

1. Will Anderson Jr., Jr, OLB, Alabama, 6-4, 243, 1
Last week No. 1
Week 5: In a 49-26 throttling of Arkansas, Anderson caused his usual mayhem, taking part in five tackles including two sacks and covered a targeted receiver once and gave up 14 yards on the play and he did whiff on two tackle attempts. Hey, he is human, right?

Previously:  In Alabama's resounding, 55-0, season-opening win over Utah State Saturday Anderson had five total tackles, three solo and blew up Utah running back Logan Bonner that validated the linebacker's moniker "The Terminator." Anderson had good and bad moments in a 20-19 second week over Texas with two tackles, three assists and key sack in the fourth quarter that forced the Longhorns to settle for a field goal. He also committed a couple of senseless penalties, including a late hit that opened the way for a field goal that put Texas ahead, 13-10. Anderson was so dominant in Alabama's week three, 63-7, beatdown of LA-Monroe that Bama Backers are talking about the Heisman Trophy and putting their star defender on offense -- somewhere. Anderson was in on five tackles, but his sprint for a 63-yard pick six was startling as the big guy showed off his 4.4-something (seconds in 40-yards) speed, apparently faster than safety/teammate Jordan Battle. In another blowout, this time 55-3 over visiting Vanderbilt in week 4, Anderson had five total tackles, including a couple of devastating stops, and was in on three sacks.

2. C.J. Stroud, rSo, QB, Ohio State, 6-3, 218, 1

Last week No. 2
Week 5: Stroud completed 13 of 22 passes for 154 yards, two touchdowns and an interception in 49-10 win over visiting Rutgers. After the game he dwelled on the interception, on a pass he tried to squeeze in despite two deep safeties. "I should’ve checked it down,” Stroud said. “In that Cover 2 look, they’re just putting a blanket over the whole offense.” Attaway to man up.

Previously: In the opener, Stroud  was 24 of 34 for 223 yards, two touchdowns in a gritty 21-10 victory over then No. 5 Notre Dame. Stroud was masterful in a 45-12 thrashing of Arkansas State in week two, hitting 16 of 24 passes for 351 yards and four touchdowns. The redshirt sophomore had a near-perfect day in week three against Toledo, throwing the same number of touchdowns (5) as incompletions. Completed 22 of 27 passes for 367 yards and the five touchdowns before coming out the third quarter. It was the fourth time in Stroud's career that he completed 80 percent or higher. In walloping Wisconsin, 52-12, in week four,  Stroud completed 17 of 27 passes for 281, five touchdowns, one interception, one drop and had best game on time on target with low release time of 2.40 seconds.

{+}3. Jalen Carter, Jr, DT, Georgia, 6-3, 300, 1

Last week No. 3
Week 5: In a surprisingly tough, 26-22 win over Missouri, Georgia star defensive tackle Jalen Carter was knocked out of the game early in the second quarter. He was helped off the field and ruled out of the game with a knee injury. On Monday, coach Kirby Smart provided an update on the junior, who was already attempting to recover from an ankle injury suffered earlier this season. "Jalen is going to be a week or two," Smart said. "Not sure. It is an MCL like expected. We don't know how long it is going to be, but it does not look good for this week." Before the game against Missouri, Carter was involved in a brief brushup with Missouri players as well.

Previously: Georgia dominated Oregon in a 49-3 blowout and Carter looked like a man among boys despite the Ducks trying various combinations to block him. Carter's stats, one tackle, no assists, no sacks, don't reflect the mayhem he caused. In week 2, Carter was part of a dominant defense that shut out Samford, 33-0. He was credited with one tackle and one hurry, but the Samford offense used extra blockers to keep him at bay. In a 48-7 runaway over South Carolina in week three, Carter started at DRE although coach Kirby Smart said the player was "banged up." That is why the best DL in the country was in on only 11 snaps and had one tackle, one hurry. Carter, still bothered by an ankle injury that limited him against South Carolina, played only one snap - at fullback - in a, 39-22week four win over Kent State. Coach Kirby Smart said "It's a nagging ankle injury. … It's tough for defensive linemen because you're dealing with 500-600 pounds of pressure."

{+}4. Bryce Young, Jr, QB, Alabama, 6-0, 194, 1

Last week No. 4
Week 5: In a 49-26 brutalizing of Arkansas, Young was knocked out of the game with what is apparently an AC Joint/labrum injury on his throwing side. Former Bama QB AJ McCarron says he had it before and  "they will shoot his shoulder up and he will be able to play through it." Thanks, Dr. McCarron. Waiting for official word. Coach Nick Saban was a bit more contrite, saying Monday it would be a game-time decision against Texas A&M.

Previously:  Bryce Young did Bryce Young things in the first half of No. 1 Alabama's 55-0 season-opening trouncing of Utah State, throwing five touchdowns in the first half and running 96 yards on four carries. In week 2, Young was under pressure by a tough Texas defense for three quarters, then began looking like a defending Heisman Trophy winner with two scoring drives in the fourth quarter. On one he scrambled to his left and threw a touchdown into the end zone. On the other, he scrambled 20 yards to help set up the winning field goal with ten seconds left. In week three, Young had forever to pass in a 63-7 win against overmatched LA-Monroe and completed 13-of-18 for 236 yards with three touchdowns, although he did toss a couple of interceptions. Young added a fourth touchdown rushing. In a week four 55-3 thrashing of Vanderbilt, Young hit on 25 of 36 passes for 385 yards, with an average target of almost 12 yards, and four touchdowns. He ran once for six yards. 

5. Kelee Ringo, rSo, CB, Georgia, 6-2, 210, 1

Last week No. 5
Week 5: In a tough 26-22 win against Missouri, Ringo was steady, getting in on two tackles from his RCB position and giving up one catch for 46 yards on four targets to his man.

Previously. In a dominant season opener, Ringo did his part frustrating Oregon transfer quarterback Bo Nix (Auburn) as the Ducks were held without a touchdown (49-3). Stats show only three tackles for Ringo but he allowed five catches on seven targets for 51 yards.  In a 33-0 week two blanking of Samford, Ringo continued to be a defensive leader and somebody the opposing offense avoided as he was in on 29 snaps and his receiver was never targeted.  Samford had 128 total yards, 109 passing.

Ringo moved from right to left cornerback for first time in season in a, 48-7 week three win over South Carolina. He was in coverage on 26 plays, targeted four times and gave up four catches for 35 total yards. After starting first two games at right corner, Ringo was the left corner for second straight week in a 39-22 win over Kent State. He was in on 59 snaps, 46 at corner, six in the slot and six in the box. He was targeted once behind the LOS and gave up a 27-yard gain.

{+}6. Jaxon Smith-Njigba, Jr, WROhio State, 6-1, 200, 1

Last week No. 6
Week 5:  Still sidelined and there is chatter he will stay out against Michigan state and get two more weeks for his hamstring to heal, which means he might return against visiting Iowa on Oct. 22. So we keep waiting. 

Previously: Entered season as a potential Heisman Trophy contender. Injured in season-opening, 21-10, win over Notre Dame. He caught two passes for net minus one yard before limping off in first quarter.  After being held out week two with lingering leg injury, Smith-Njigba caught two passes (three targets) for 33 yards in a week three, 77-21, win against Toledo. Smith-Njigba sat out OSU's 52-21 win over Wisconsin and Ohio State coach said Tuesday there is no firm timetable on the return of NFL Draft Scout's top rated receiver. Day said that Smith-Njigba remains day to day after an injury setback that left him unavailable for last week’s rout of Wisconsin. Smith-Njigba first injured his hamstring in the season-opening win over Notre Dame. Smith-Njigba has been limited through the first month of this season, playing only 38 snaps over two games with four catches for 36 yards, according to the team's web site (other stats vary).

7. Jordan Addison, Jr, WR, Southern California, 5-11, 175, 1

Last week No. 7
Week 5: In 42-25 beatdown of Arizona State, Addison caught eight of the ten passes thrown to him, with one drop, for 105 yards and failed to score for the first time this season. For the season he has 29 catches for 442 yards and six scores.

Previously: In season opener, this defending Biletnikoff Award winner and the center of mucho attention when he transferred from Pitt, Addison picked up where he left off last season. USC pummeled the Rice Owls, 66-14. Addison led the Trojans with five catches (5 targets) for 54 yards and two touchdowns. In week two, Addison embarrassed Stanford's defense, seeming to get open at will as he caught seven passes (8 targets) for 172 yards with two touchdowns in a 41-28 win that boosted the Trojans from No. 10 to No. 7 in the polls. In a 45-17 win over a feisty Fresno State team, Addison lined up in the wide (25 times) and in the slot (7) and was targeted seven times, caught six passes for 69 yards and a touchown. Of those yards, 43 were after the catch. He maintained flawless record foe 2022 with no drops on 20 targets, with 18 catches for 295 yards and five touchdowns. It was a rough game at Corvallis in which quarterback Caleb Williams was not in sync behind an offensive line that was inconsistent and the Trojan defense had to keep the game within reach. That reach belonged to Addison, who capped an 11-play, 84-yard drive on a fourth-down, 21-yard touchdown catch with 1:13 left to decide the game.

8. Joey Porter Jr., rJr, CB, Penn State, 6-2, 198, 1

Last week No. 8
Week 5: In a,17-7, win over visiting Northwestern, Porter linedup 24 times in the box or on the line and was in on one hurry and two tackles. He was targeted once and didn’t give up a catch.

Previously:  Porter was all over the field in a barn-burner of a season-opening, 35-31, win at Purdue. Although Purdue quarterback Aidan O'Connell threw for 356 yards, it took him 58 passes to do so (29 complete). Porter forced six incompletions and led the team with eight tackles. Following that tremendous show in his season opener, Porter was merely good in a 46-10 win over the Ohio Bobcats. His stat line includes one tackle, but he helped limit Ohio to only 164 yards passing. Porter Jr. started at his LCB spot in a week three 41-12 win over Auburn. The Tigers avoided him as his receiver was never targeted. He was in on two tackles. In a 33-14 win over Central Michigan, Porter allowed only one catch on five targets and was in on four tackles (missed two). He played his LCB position on 41 snaps, but moved into the box four times.

9. Michael Mayer, Jr, TE, Notre Dame, 6-5, 265, 1

Last week No. 9
Week 5:  After a week off, Mayer and Notre Dame will be in Paradise. Well, that's Paradise, Nevada, aka mailing address of Allegiant Stadium where the Las Vegas Raiders play. The Irish will be tested by No. 16 BYU and, at the moment, Notre Dame is a 3.5-point favorite. And if you are at the game , you don’t need to go far to place that bet.

Previously: In the season-opener, ND fans griped about the Irish offense being boring in 21-10 loss at second-ranked Ohio State. But they had no complaints about Mayer. He blocked well and led Notre Dame with five catches for 32 yards. Notre Dame's shocking, week two, 26-21, loss to Marshall pushed the Irish down the ratings, but Mayer continued to do his part. Against the Thundering Herd, Mayer led Notre Dame with eight catches for 103 yards and a touchdown. In a 24-7 week three win over Cal-Berkeley, Mayer caught only two passes for 10 yards, but one was a six-yard touchdown that broke a 17-17 tie in the fourth quarter. Frustrated fans that filled the ND stadium erupted after the catch gave the Irish their first win of the season. In a much needed, 45-32, win over North Carolina, Mayer helped with his best overall game of the season. He again led the Irish with seven catches (nine targets) for 88 yards and a touchdown and was especially impressive getting the ball on three contested catches.

10. Paris Johnson Jr., Jr, OT, Ohio State, 6-6, 310, 1

Last week No. 10
Week 5:  Johnson was almost flawless in 53 snaps at left tackle as the Buckeyes totaled 413 yards of offense. Johnson did not give up a sack, hit or hurry.

Previously:  Before the season opener, Green Bay Packers scouts said aloud going into the ND-OSU game that they were focused on battle between Johnson and ND defensive end Isaiah Foskey. The scouts left impressed. Johnson gave up two hurries. In week two, Johnson performed as expected against so-so competition in a 45-12 win over Arkansas State. The Buckeyes totaled 538 yards, 370 passing. Johnson had his best game of the season in week three, albeit against inferior competition, as the Buckeyes ran up 763 yards of total offense in a 77-21 win over Toledo. Johnson was in on 28 running plays and 29 passing and continued his streak of not giving up a sack since the one he yielded as a freshman in 2020. Looking comfortable at left tackle, Johnson, where he has 238 snaps after four games, Johnson was nearly flawless as the Buckeyes amassed 539 total yards, split nicely with 281 in the air and 258 rushing.

11. Jaelyn Duncan, rSr, OT, Maryland, 6-5, 320, 1

Last week No. 11
Week 5:  Maryland rolled over Michigan State, 27-12 with 489 total yards, including 314 in the air. Duncan, at left tackle, did better than he did against Michigan, allowing only one hurry and one pressure in 48 passing plays.
Previously: Duncan, second team All-Big Ten last year, was perfect in 46 snaps at left tackle although Terp quarterback Taulia Tagovailo and a dynamic receiving crew got all the attention as Maryland mauled the Buffalo Bulls, 31-10, in the season opener. Duncan gets big assist in gathering 445 total yards, with 297 passing. In week two, Maryland amassed 617 total yards - 424 in the air, 193 rushing - in a 56-21 romp over the Charlotte 49ers. Duncan yielded only one hurry against 22 pass rush plays.  In a 34-27 week three win over SMU, Duncan started at left tackle and gave up only one hurry on 31 pass plays  and was called on one penalty. Maryland again was well-balanced on offense with 214 yards passing and 225 rushing. In Maryland's first loss, 34-27, to unbeaten Michigan in week four, the Terrapins struggled. Duncan wore down a bit with 75 snaps at left tackle, 48 on pass plays, and gave up his first sack of the season along with two hurries and four pressures as QB Taulia Tagovailoa and backup Billy Edwards were harassed constantly. Maryland, which entered the game averaging 499 yards on offense, managed 397.

12. Jordan Battle, Sr, SS, Alabama, 6-1, 206, 1

Last week No. 12
Week 5:  In a 49-26 win over Arkansas Battle was nominally listed at a starting RCB, but was really all over the field, lining up in the box 27 times and playing back playing slot safety  at lease eight times. He was in on seven or eight tackles, was targeted for two passes and gave up one for 16 yards.

Previously: Despite being a strong safety, Battle looked as good or better in coverage as he did tackling in Bama's 55-0 dismantling of Utah State. He had four tackles and held Utah State to 136 total yards, only 57 in the air. In week two's tough, 20-19, win over Texas, Battle had three tackles, an assist and helped keep running back Bijan Robinson from getting loose. But Battle was conflicted against early play-action which sometimes helped the Texas passing game. Week three's official stats show Battle was in on one tackle, but overmatched LA-Monroe gathered only 91 yards passing (169 total) while being brutalized by Bama, 63-7.  Battle played 58 snaps on defense, was targeted on one incomplete. In a week four, 55-3 romp over Vanderbilt, Battle started at left corner, as usual, lined up in the box on 10 of 48 snaps and was in on five tackles. He gave up three completions in five targets for total of 23 yards.

{+}13. Bryan Bresee, rSo, DT, Clemson, 6-5, 305, 1

Last week No. 13

Week 5: A kidney infection kept Bresee out of No. 5 Clemson's week five, 30-20, win over No. 14 North Carolina State. Bresee will also miss Saturday's week six encounter with Boston College.

Previously:  Bresee, the former No. 1 recruit in the country who was a Freshman All-American in 2020, looked strong while often facing double-team blocking in a 41-10 win over Georgia Tech. Bresee was in on 2 sacks and a hurry and made a notable tackle for a loss. Bresee was a rock on Clemson's talented rotation of defensive linemen in a 35-12 second week  win over Furman  with four QB pressures, one hit and three hurries. Bresee missed game against Louisiana Tech in week three, staying with his family following the death of his younger sister, Ella. In a dramatic, double overtime, 51-45, win over Wake Forest, Bresee played a season-high 51 snaps and was a load, pressuring the pocket five times with four hurries and one QB hit. But he saved the best for last with a huge tackle for no gain on first down in overtime that put Wake Forest behind the chains for good.

14. Noah Sewell, rSo, ILB, Oregon, 6-2, 253, 1

Last week: No. 14

Week 5: Starting at RILB, Sewell had good and not so good moments in a 45-21 win over Stanford. He was in on five tackles and had one hurry on the QB, but his targeted receiver caught two of three passes for 52 yards and one touchdown.

Previously: Considered the best inside linebacker in the nation and a wrecking ball on defense, Sewell collected only two tackles with one assist in Oregon's embarrassing, 49-3, season-opening loss to Georgia. He had two tackles, two missed tackles and gave up one pass (targeted twice) for 11 yards. Sewell showed up on stats sheet with only one tackle in a 70-14 win over the Eastern Washington Eagles in week two. The Ducks were recovering from their 49-3 thrashing by Georgia and everybody looked better against the Eagles. In a,41-20 week three win over BYU, Sewell started at RILB, played on 28 snaps and had his most efficient game of the season despite again being credited with only one tackle.  Oregon stats show Sewell in on nine tackles, which may be two more than reality, but he was active in a huge, 44-41, week four win over previously unbeaten Washington State. Playing 68 snaps, Sewell had one sack and two hurries but gave up catches on four passes (total 13 yards).

15. Emmanuel Forbes, Jr, CB, Mississippi State, 6-0, 180, 1

Last week: No. 15

Week 5: Texas A&M learned why teams stayed away from Forbes as the right cornerback picked off two interceptions and added a big pass breakup in a 42-24 win for Mississippi State. He was targeted four time and gave up one catch for five yards.

Previously: Sometimes when a cornerback has no stats it is because the opponent feared him. That seemed to be the case, and justifiably so, in Mississippi State's 49-23 win over Memphis. He had one Kodak Moment knocking away a pass intended for Memphis wide receiver Javon Ivory in the end zone. Great play. Forbes went into season as the FBS active career leader in pick sixes with three. In a week two, 39-14 win at Arizona, Forbes was in on five tackles but missed three others.  In the third quarter, Forbes looked excellent, getting a tackle, an assist and a big interception. Started at RCB in, 31-16, week three loss to LSU. Against a talented LSU receiving group that includes Kayshon Boutte (once in top ten, but dropping), gave up four catches on eight plays on which his man was targeted, yielding 51 yards. In a 45-14 week four win over visiting Bowling Green, Forbes was in on four tackles, but gave up four catches on six targets for 17 of the Falcons' 172 passing yards.

16. Nolan Smith, Sr, OLB, Georgia, 6-2, 235, 1

Last week: No. 16

Week 5: Smith caused problems from his ROLB spot and was in on four tackles, two hurries and a sack. He was never in pass coverage.

Previously: Starting at right outside linebacker in the opener, Smith's length, strength, quickness and field smarts were obvious, especially against Oregon's running game in the Dawgs' 49-3 win. The Ducks ran away from him but the big guy took it as a challenge and tracked players all over the field. He had two tackles, two hits on the QB and a hurry. In week two, Smith did his part in blanking Samford, 33-0, with t wo tackles, a hit and a hurry on the QB while allowing 128 total yards. Still the starting ROLB in a week three 48-7 win over South Carolina. He contributed three tackles, one hit and one hurry on the quarterback. In his only coverage on targeted receiver, Smith gave up a 12- yard completion. In a week four, 39-22 win over visiting Kent State,  Smith did little of everything and finished with two tackles, a sack and a hurry. 

17. Bijan Robinson, Jr, RB, Texas, 6-0, 222, 1

Last week: No. 17

Week 5: Bijan Robinson rolled for 101 yards and one touchdown on 21 carries and added two catches on two targets for 34 yards in Texas' 38-20 win over West Virginia.

Previously: With a lot of attention on coach Steve Sarkisian seeking success after a 5-7 season in 2021 and Texas' new starting quarterback Quinn Ewers (225 yards passing, two TDs), Robinson may have been a bit overlooked in a season-opening, 52-10, win against overmatched Louisiana-Monroe. But Robinson finished with 111 total yards on 13 touches, and two third-quarter touchdowns on a 16-yard catch and a 9-yard run. Robinson was held to 57 yards rushing with one touchdown (21 carries) in a hard-fought, 20-19, second week loss to Alabama.  Robinson played like the top running back prospect in the draft - which he is -- while dominating action in a 41-20 win over USTA in week three. In perhaps the best performance of his career, Robinson carried 20 times for 183 yards and three touchdowns - one from 79 yards and another from 41. He also had one catch for 19 yards and blocked effectively on the few times he was asked to do so. In a, 37-34, week four overtime loss to Texas Tech, Robinson carried 16 times for 101 yards, two touchdowns -- one a 40-yarder that gave Texas a 31-17 lead in the third quarter. However, Robinson's fumble on the first play of overtime set up the Red Raiders for a winning field goal and didn't help his Heisman hopes.

18. Johnny Wilson, rSo, WR, Florida State, 6-6, 235, 1

Last week: No. 18

Week 5: Hard to miss this big guy when he catches six passes (nine targets) for 142 yards and a touchdown although Florida State still lost to Wake Forest, 31-21.

Previously:  This giant receiver played two seasons at Arizona State before joining the Seminoles. He came out of Calabasas High (CA) as a four-star recruit whom some thought might become a tight end. In season-opening, 47-7, win over Duquesne, Wilson was in on only four passing snaps and caught one of two passes to him but legged it out 16 yards after the catch for a 51-yard gain. In a big 24-23 win over LSU in week two, Wilson played 28 downs, caught three passes (six targets) for 60 yards.  Wilson starred in week three, 35-31, win over Louisville. He caught seven passes on nine targets for 149 yards and two touchdowns, including dazzling, 40 yarder that showed his speed, estimated at 4.4-something by NFL Draft Scout. In 44-14 week four  win over Boston College, Wilson caught two of his five targets for 12 yards, his low for the year. His four-game totals are 13 catches (22 targets) for 272 yards, a healthy 20.9-yard average.

19. OCyrus Torrence, Sr, OG, Florida, 6-5, 347, 1

Last week: No. 19

Week 5: Geez. In a 51-17 win over the Eastern Washington Eagles, Florida ran up 666 total yards .  In Christianity, 666 is called the "number of the beast" in (most manuscripts of) chapter 13 of the Book of Revelation of the New Testament. Not sure about that, but one thing is certain - the Eagles didn't stand a prayer. Torrence pitched a near perfect game as the Gators averaged 13.3 yards a play and never punted (but failed on one fourth down try) while Torrence, at left guard, did not give up a sack, hit or hurry.

Previously: Spent two years at Louisiana-Lafayette before moving to Florida this season. In a 29-16 season-opening victor over then 12th ranked Utah, Torrence was a stud at right guard for 65 plays and gave up no stats while the Gators gathered 451 yards. After a great season opener, Florida lost to Kentucky in week two, 26-16 as Torrence gave up his first hurry of the season. In a, 31-28,week three win over the South Florida Bulls Torrence has his best game. He was close to flawless as a blocker - 28 runs and 23 passes. He made a memorable block to spring running back Trevor Ettienne for a 40-yard touchdown. In wild, 38-33, week four loss at Tennessee there was 1,170 yards of total offense -- 594 by Florida- Torrence kept that huge body on the field for 90 snaps, gave up one QB hit, one hurry and two pressures.

20. Ryan Hayes, rSr, OT, Michigan, 6-6, 305, 1

Last week: No. 24

Week 5: In a 27-14 win over Iowa, No. 4 ranked Michigan gathered 327 yards against a tough defense. Hayes played the whole game at left tackle (67 snaps) and gave up two hurries and two pressures.

Previously: Hayes missed the season-opening, 51-7 win over Colorado state with an injury that was undisclosed, as usual, by coach Jim Harbaugh. The Wolverines also lost Karson Barnhart in the first quarter and shifted their line, moving guard Trevor Keegan to tackle and inserting freshman Giovanni El-Hadi at guard. No problem. Michigan scored four touchdowns rushing, surrendered just one sack and allowed two hurries. Harbaugh pointed out that the unit accounted for only one penalty, a hold, and "No false starts, no delay of games." Michigan's entire line was intact and dominant in a, 56-10, week two win over Hawaii. Hayes started at left tackle, played 34 snaps, 17 runs, 17 passes, and gave up one hit and one pressure on the QB. Michigan mauled Connecticut, 59-0, in week three while compiling 465 yards of total offense, 273 passing, 192 rushing at the rate of 6.7 yards a play. Hayes was responsible for one quarterback hit and one hurry on 22 pass plays. Michigan ran up 463 yards total offense in a 34-27week four win over visiting Maryland. Hayes played 66 snaps, his most this season, and gave up one hurry and one pressure.

21. Kayshon Boutte, Jr, WR, LSU, 6-0, 205, 1

Last week: No. 20

Week 5:  In a 21-17 win over Auburn, Boutte was used differently, lining up in the slot 21 out of 31 passing plays. Seems like the idea was to get him the ball quickly and let his athletic ability do the rest. The results were dismal. He was targeted twice at average depth of minus 1.5 yards (can you say quick screen?) He caught one, dropped one, and netted four yards. Not the kind of data we expected for one of the very best WR talents in the country.

 Previously: Season opening, 24-23, loss to Florida state was just weird. Game ended with no time on clock as blocked PAT preserved Florida State's victory. Boutte's lack of participation was also weird. At 3:58 left in third quarter his first contribution was to draw a pass interference that kept LSU's TD drive alive. He finished with only two catches for 20 yards, had a couple of drops and seemed out of sync. He also spent an inordinate amount of time on the sidelines. Remember, flamboyant coach Brian Kelly called out Boutte a few weeks back, questioning his commitment. Just before the season Kelly said the receiver, ranked eighth overall at the time by NFL Draft Scout, "recommitted." Boutte was awarded LSU's coveted No. 7 jersey, ostensibly for the team's top player. In 16 career games through 2021 season, Boutte scored 14 touchdowns. After a controversial season opener, Boutte got into a little more action in a 65-17 win over the Southern Jaguars with four catches for 42 yards. That's still less that we expect from this explosive receiver, although it was his 18th straight game with a catch. In the week three 31-16 win over Mississippi State, Boutte was targeted eight times and caught only three passes for 31 yards, partially because some passes weren't really catchable although he had one legitimate drop.  He was used in the slot more than usual (10 times). Whether there is a lack of communication between Boutte and run-oriented quarterback Jayden Daniels is open for debate, but it looks like Boutte's natural talent is not being maximized.  Something is just not right with this former top 10 rated player. Boutte missed t  he week four game against New Mexico to attend the birth of his child. Coach Brian Kelly said the team supports Boutte and his girlfriend, who were expecting a baby boy. What Boutte needs is more support on the field.

22. Jermaine Burton, Jr, WR, Alabama, 6-0, 200, 1

Last week: No. 21

Week 5: In a 49-26 win over Arkansas in which quarterback Bryce Young was sidelined after 13 passes with a shoulder injury, Burton was  targeted only three times and caught one for 14 yards. He technically started as a wide receiver but was in the slot six out of 16 snaps.

Previously: In season opener, Burton caught five passes for 35 yards and two scores during 55-0 win over Utah State. Coach Nick Saban failed in an attempt to recruit Burton out of high school but jumped at the chance to get him out of the transfer portal (from Georgia). Burton hoped to become the latest in a list of Alabama's seven first round receivers since 2011. In a rugged week two, 20-19, win over Texas, Burton started as left wideout, but played in the slot 23 of 44 snaps and caught two of three passes to him for only ten yards and dropped one. In week three's 63-7 win over LA-Monroe. Burton started in the slot, where he played 9 of 16 snaps, caught two of three passes to him for 50 yards.  In a 55-3 week four trouncing of Vanderbilt, Burton started at his usual slot spot, where he lined up seven of 27 snaps, and caught all four passes thrown to him for 94 yards.

23. Myles Murphy, Jr, DE, Clemson, 6-5, 275, 1

Last week: No.  25

Week 5: In No. 5 Clemson's 30-29 win over No. 14 North Carolina State, Murphy was a terror from his DRE spot. He was in on four tackles with two sacks, two hits on the QB and one hurry.

Previously: Murphy is a former Top 5 national recruit who made an instant impact as a freshman All-American in 2020. He had 14 tackles for a loss, seven sacks last season. In a Monday, 41-10, season-opening  win over Georgia Tech, Murphy started at DLE and was effective as part of Clemson's talented group of defensive linemen and was in on one sack and a hurry. In a week two 35-12 victory over visiting Furman, Murphy contributed two pressures, two hurries and two tackles. In  a week three 48-20 win over visiting Louisiana Tech, Murphy played 38 defensive snaps, 28 on pass plays, and made three tackles, two assists and a sack. In a grueling, 51-45, week four double overtime win over Wake Forest, Murphy played a season high 49 snaps with four pressures, four hurries, one batted pass and four tackles.

24. Josh Downs, Jr, WR, North Carolina, 5-10, 175, 1

Last week: No. 23

Week 5: Looking very healthy, Downs played mostly out of the slot (26 of 37 snaps) and caught all eight passes to him for 120 yards.

Previously: Downs was injured in the season-opening, 56-24, win over the Florida A&M Rattlers (FAMU). In that game he caught nine passes for 78 yards and two touchdowns. He limped off the field after his second score and wore ice on his left knee during a post-game interview. Downs did not play in North Carolina's epic, 63- 61 win over feisty Appalachian State or the resounding week three, 35-28, win over Georgia State. Josh downs looked great in his first action since a knee injury in season opener. Although Notre Dame won the week four game, 45-32, Downs started in the slot, where he played 34 of 40 snapes, and caught all five passes thrown his way for 32 yards and two touchdowns.

25. Peter Skoronski, Jr, OT, Northwestern, 6-4, 315, 1

Last week: No. 26

Week 5: In Northwestern's 17-7 loss at No. 10 Penn State, Skoronski did not have his best day as the Wildcats managed only 31 rushing yards and 241 overall. Skoronski gave up his second hit and second pressure on the quarterback this season. 

Previously: The Wildcats rallied to beat Nebraska, 31-28, on August. 27, gathering 528 yards in the process (314 passing, 214 rushing). Skoronski was dominant, giving up zero sacks or hurries in 39 pass-block snaps. In fact, Northwestern's O-Line controlled Nebraska almost the entire game and didn't give up a sack. After a week off, Northwestern gained 511 yards on offense but lost to Duke, 31-23, but Skoronski had a perfect game at left tackle as Northwestern compiled 511 yards of offense. With Skoronski still steady at left tackle, Northwestern gathered 380 yards in a 31-24 loss to Southern Illinois. After three games and 155 pass plays, Skoronski has not given up a sack, hit or hurry. In a 17-14 week four loss to the visiting Miami RedHawks, Skoronski gave up his first negative stat of the season, a hit on the quarterback as Northwestern gathered 365 yards, 257 in the air.

26. Trenton Simpson, Jr, OLB, Clemson, 6-3, 240, 1

Last week: No. 37

Week 5: In No. 5 Clemson's 30-20 win over No. 14 North Carolina State, Simpson was listed as the starting WLB, lined up 48 times in the box or on the line and was in on five tackles. He covered targeted receivers five times and gave up two catches for a grand net of three yards.

Previously: In an impressive, season-opening, 41-10 win over Georgia Tech, Simpson was a force with eight tackles, one forced fumble, one  QB hurry and two assists. Simpson followed up a tremendous season opener with four tackles and four assists in a 35-12 win over Furman in his first appearance in our top 50.  In a, 48-20, week three win over LA Tech, Simpson started at WLB and helped limit the Bulldogs to 317 yards, only six rushing. He made three tackles and gave up one, four-yard pass in his only coverage assignment.  In his best game of an already outstanding season, Simpson stood out while playing 78 snaps in a grueling, 51-45, week four,  double overtime win over Wake Forest. He technically started at weak outside linebacker, but lined up all over the field, including 32 in the box and was in on eight tackles, one QB hurry, a forced fumble, and a pass breakup. He got our vote for Lott IMPACT player of the week.

27. JL Skinner, rSr, SS, Boise State, 6-3, 220, 1

Last week: No. 22

Week 5: Stats vary, but in Boise State's impressive, 35-13, win over San Diego State, Skinner played a total of 47 snaps - 27 in the box - and was in on between three and six stats and was not targeted as a pass defender. 

Previously: In season opener, Skinner looked 100 percent after a spring car accident as he led Boise State with six tackles and an interception in a 34-17 loss at Oregon State. There was no clarification on why Skinner was inactive in Boise State's, 31-14, rebound win over New Mexico. Skinner started at strong safety in week three 30-7 win over Tennessee-Martin and was credited with two tackles and a quarterback hurry. His receiver was targeted five times, had one pass breakup and gave up one catch for eight yards. In a 27-10 week four  loss to UTEP, Skinner did his part by being in on 13 tackles while giving up one catch for only six yards.  He lined up in the box on 47 of 67 snaps.

28. Will Levis, rSr, QB, Kentucky, 6-2, 232

Last week: No. 27

Week 5: In No. 13 Kentucky's 22-19 loss at Ole Miss, Levis completed 18 of 24 passes for 220 yards and two touchdowns with two, maybe three, drops and one thrown away.

Previously: Levis began the season hitting 21 of 32 for 303 yards, three touchdowns and one interception in a 37-13 win over the Miami RedHawks. He followed that by completing 13 of 24 passes for 202 yards, one touchdown and one interception in a 26-16 win over the Florida Gators.  In week 3, after jumping from 98 to 27 in NFL Draft Scout ratings, Levis had his best game of the season, completing 27 of 35 passes for 377 yards, two touchdowns and two interceptions in a 31-0 win over Youngstown State. Levis continued with a hot hand, pushing Kentucky to 4-0 while completing 18 of 26 passes for 303 yards and four touchdowns in a 31-23 victory over Northern Illinois. He did this despite constant pressure by the Huskies, who had five sacks. The gimme games are officially over for the Wildcats. Next up is No. 16 Ole Miss., which squeaked past Tulsa, 35-27. 

29. Jack Campbell, rJr, ILB, Iowa, 6-4, 246, 1

Last week: No. 28

Week 5: In a hard-fought, 27-14 loss to visiting No. 4 Michigan, Campbell was hyperactive as usual and got in on eleven tackles, his high for the season.

Previously: Campbell won the weekly Lott Impact Award as he led the Hawkeyes to a season-opening, 7-3, win over South Dakota State. He had five tackles, seven assists and a safety, holding SDS to a mere 120 total yards (87 passing, 33 rushing). But Iowa fans were more focused on their own team's anemic offense, with 166 total yards including only 109 passing. They booed lustily. Campbell hit back in his post-game interview: "I hate to break it to you guys, b000ut they're more than football players. They're brothers, sons, grandsons and I feel a lot of people lose sight of that. I just view them as a person, as a relationship, as a friend...No matter what, I'm always going to have their backs." Mmm. Sounds like Lott himself. In game No. 2, Campbell was in on nine tackles, had two big stops, one hit and one hurry on QB in 10-7 loss to Iowa State. Starting again at left inside linebacker in week three, Campbell was in on 11 tackles in a 27-0 win over the Nevada Wolf Pack. He also had a hit and a hurry on the quarterback. Campbell continued to be challenged in pass defense, giving up catches all three times his receiver was targeted, albeit for net total of only three yards. In a 27-10 week four win at Rutgers, Campbell was in on nine tackles and broke up one pass but gave up four catches on five targets for 35 yards

30. Christopher Smith, rSr, FS, Georgia, 5-11, 195, 1

Last week: No. 29

Week 5: In a very tough, 26-22, win Missouri challenged Smith with three passes and completed two for only 14 yards. He was in on three tackles.

Previously: In Georgia's dominant, season-opening, 49-3, win at Oregon, Smith was in on six tackles and an interception. His most memorable play was a pass breakup that denied the Ducks a rare chance at a big play. He hurt his shoulder on that play, left the game and said later it was only a "stinger."  One of three Smiths on this brutal team defense, Christopher was in on one and a near interception as Georgia shut out Samford in week two, 33-0.  In a, 48-7, week three win over South Carolina, C. Smith started at was in on 23 pass plays, made one tackle and whiffed on one tackle. He was never on a targeted receiver, which could be a sign of respect, or fear. In a,  39-22 week four win over visiting Kent State, Smith was in on five tackles, gave up a six yard pass but grabbed an interception as the Golden Flashes were held to 281 total yards, 188 passing.

31. Siaki Ika, rJr, DT, Baylor, 6-3, 358, 1

Last week: No. 30

Week 5: In Baylor's tough, 36-25, loss to Oklahoma State Ika played his most snaps of the season, 44 (all as DLE), and managed to get in on four tackles and create a hurry. That's a lot of work at 358 pounds.

Previously: Ika had two assists in Baylor's season-opening, 69-10, romp over Albany as the Bears outgained the Great Danes in total yardage, 573-237. Albany had only 87 yards rushing. He is a fourth-year junior who transferred from LSU before the 2021 season. Ika played as a freshman in 2019 under LSU assistant Dave Aranda, who became Baylor's head coach in 2020. Coaches selected Ikaw a Big 12 Defensive Newcomer of the Year in 2021. Ika had one tackle and one assist in a 26-10 loss at BYU. The Cougars managed 366 total yards, but only 83 on the ground. Started at DLE again in a, 42-7, week three win against  the visiting Texas State Bobcats.  On 18 pass rush plays he had two hurries, two batted passes and also missed a tackle. In a 31-24 week four win over Iowa State, Ika was in on three tackles and three hurries as the Cyclones were held to 66 yards rushing.

32. Will McDonald IV, rSr, DE, Iowa State, 6-3, 236, 1

Last week: No. 31

Week 5: In an intense, 14-11, loss to No. 19 Kansas, McDonald played all 43 defensive snaps at DRE, and was in on three big stops. 

Previously: McDonald, who had 11.5 sacks last season and 10.5 in 2020, failed to add another in Iowa State's season-opening 42-10 romp over Southeastern Missouri State. He did have one tackle as the Cyclones held the RedHawks to 320 total yards, including 98 rushing. In a dramatic, 10-7 win over Iowa, McDonald didn’t light up the stat sheet in the Cyclones’ game against Iowa, helped hold the Hawkeyes to 2.3 yards per rush. A sleek, slender, slithery type, McDonald made an impact with two tackles, two fumble recoveries a QB hurry and a batted pass. Starting at RDE in a 43-10, week three win over the Ohio Bobcats, McDonald IV contributed a sack and a key stop and helped hold the Bobcats to only 24 yards rushing.: In a 31-24 week four loss to No. 16 Baylor, McDonald was in on five tackles and split one sack. He did hurry the QB twice.

33. Clark Phillips III, rSo, CB, Utah, 5-09, 183, 1-2

Last week: No. 34

Week 5: In 42-16 win against Oregon State, Clark Phillips III split time between slot corner and corner had an incredible performance. Targeted 11 times and gave up six catches for 55 yards, but he grabbed three interceptions. He is the first Power Five cornerback to have three picks in a game in two years. All of his Power Five-leading four interceptions have come in the past two weeks. He will try to keep it going against No. 18 UCLA this weekend.

Previously: Phillips was among those unable to stop Florida quarterback Anthony Richardson who threw for 168 yards and ran for 106 yards and three touchdowns in a 29-26 upset over No. 7 ranked Utah. Phillips was credited with only one tackle in this season-opener, gave up two catches on three targets, but for only 11 yards. He made one great stop when he avoided a blocker on a screen. Florida was conscious of Phillips and put his man in motion or seemed to stay away from him.  Phillips had a tackle and an assist in a 73-7 win over obviously overmatched Southern Utah, which struggled to gain 85 total yards, almost evenly split between 42 passing and 43 rushing. Not the kind of balanced attack a team wants. In a, 35-7, week three win over San Diego State, Phillips III started at his LCB spot and although he was in coverage 29 times, was targeted only once, giving up a six-yard catch, and made one tackle. In a, 34-13 week four win over a struggling Arizona State, Phillips was in on four tackles and had one interception while allowing five completions on six targets.

34. Kenny McIntosh, Sr, RB, Georgia, 6-0, 210, 1-2

Last week: No. 33

Week 5: In a 26-22 win over Missouri where nothing came easy, McIntosh carried ten times for 65 yards and caught one pass (on three targets) for ten yards. 

Previously: In Georgia's season-opening, 49-3, trouncing of Oregon, McIntosh rushed five times for 18 yards and a touchdown but tore up the Ducks defense with nine catches for 117 yards. That was the most receiving yards by a Georgia running back since 2000. In a week two, 33-0, win over Samford, McIntosh again showed his versatility, rushing seven times for 15 yards and a touchdown and led the Bulldogs with five catches -- on five targets - for 61 yards. In week three 48-7 win over South Carolina, McIntosh carried four times for 20 yards, caught one pass (2 targets) for 14. Effective as run blocker, not so much as pass blocker.  McIntosh was busy in Georgia's 39-22 week four win over Kent State. He rushed nine times for 49 yards and caught six of the seven passes to him for 35 yards. He lined up as WR three times and in the slot once to maximize his threat as a receiver. 

35.  Tyree Wilson, rSr, OLB, Texas Tech, 6-5, 275, 1-2

Last Week: No. 37 (up from 62)

Week 5:  In a 37-28 loss to Kansas State, Wilson raised as much hell as possible from his LOLB spot, getting in on six tackles with two sacks, two hurries and two hits on the quarterback.

Previously: In season-opening, 63-10 romp over Murray State, Wilson served notice by taking part by harassing the QB seven times, including one sack and six hurries. In a week two, 33-31 overtime win against Houston, Wilson pestered the QB six times with five hurries and a hit. Tech lost to No. 10 North Carolina State, 27-14, in week three but Wilson was all over the QB again with one sack, four hurries and a hit. In four games Wilson has four sacks, 15 hurries and three hits on the quarterback. His performance in Texas Tech's wild, week four, 37-34 overtime upset over then No. 22 Texas earned Wilson a jump into the top 50, up from 62 the previous week. Listed as an OLB, some call him a DE, but the Longhorns just called him trouble.  Wilson was in on six tackles, a sack, four pressures and a hit on the QB on 45 defensive plays, nine over the tackle and 36 from outside. Tech fans swarmed the field in celebration of their first win over intra-state rival since wide receiver Michael Crabtree's great game in 2008.

36. Keeanu Benton, Sr, DT, Wisconsin, 6-3, 315, 1

Last week: No. 32

Week 5: In a humbling, 34-10 loss to Illinois, Benton played most of his 43 snaps at nose tackle yet still managed to get in on four big plays, including two sacks and another hit on the quarterback.

Previously:  Benton was one of the Wisconsin team captains in the season-opening, 38-0, victory over Illinois State. He was in on four tackles, hit the QB three times, hurried him once. The Badgers held the Redbirds to only 243 total yards, and a mere 57 on the ground. He ate up multiple blockers while inside linebacker Maema Njogmeta was free to lead the team with seven tackles, one assist. In a week two, 17-14, loss to Washington State, Benton started at NT and held up well against guard Christian Hilborn, among others. Benton finished with one official tackle, two hurries. Benton moved from NT to DRT to start in a 66-7, week three clubbing of the New Mexico State Aggies. Played only 15 downs and made two tackles a hit and a hurry. Nobody looked very good on Wisconsin's defense as Ohio State bullied its way to a 52-21 week four win. Benton was in on five tackles with one hit on the quarterback, but the Buckeyes gained 539 total yards.

37. Derick Hall, Sr, OLB, Auburn, 6-2, 256, 1-2

Last week: No. 35

Week 5: Lining up mostly on the left edge (72 out of 75 snaps), Hall was in on plenty of action in a grueling, 21-17, loss to No. 25 LSU. Hall was credited with being in on three tackles, but his totals include one sack, one hit and five hurries on the QB.

Previously: In the opener, Hall contributed two official tackles with one sack in Auburn's 42-16 thrashing of the Mercer Bears.

Hall was a rude host to the visiting San Jose Spartans, harassing them with a team-leading five tackles and three assists in Auburn's 24-16 win. 

Auburn was beat up by visiting Penn State, 41-12, in week three. Hall was in on five tackles. Auburn managed a 17-14, week four, overtime win against visiting Missouri as Hall contributed four tackles and two sacks.

38. Cameron Brown, rSr, CB, Ohio State, 6-0, 192, 1-2

Last week: No. 38

Week 5: Brown, who has history of missing games with injuries, sat out second consecutive game, a 49-10 win over Rutgers. He is beset by a lingering hamstring problem.

Previously: Brown, in his fifth season with Buckeyes, graduated in May with a degree in uman development and family sciences and still has another season of eligibility. In OSU's season-opening, 21-10, win over Notre Dame, Brown started at left corner and gave up one catch in three targets for 33 yards. Stats sheet didn’t show it, but he made at least one key play to stop Notre Dame on a third down attempt. In week two, Brown was in on five tackles but gave up five catches on six targets for a total of 45 yards. Brown made four tackles and an assist in the Buckeyes' week two 45-12 win over Arkansas State. In week three, Brown was escorted to the locker room in the second quarter of the Buckeyes' 77-21 win over Toledo. In the first half, Ohio State's defense allowed two touchdowns — a 23-yard run by Toledo quarterback Dequan Finn and a 50-yard pass from Finn to Thomas Zsiros. Is history repeating? Brown's 2020 season ended early when he tore an Achilles tendon in the second game against Penn State and missed three games in 2021 with other nagging injuries. Brown sat out 52-21, week four win over Wisconsin because of the lingering hamstring injury.

{+}39. Tyler Harrell, rSr, WR, Alabama, 6-0, 194, 1-2

Last week: No. 39

Week 5: OK, this should be a concern. Still a no-show after first being seen on sideline in a walking boot during season opener. Is he saving that celebrated speed (reported to be 4.24 second in 40 yards) for big games? Or the combine?

Previously: Foot injury kept him sidelined since he was first seen wearing a walking boot on his right foot in Bama's 55-0 season opening win over Utah State. He was ranked No. 27 early, based largely on 2021 season when he had caught 18 passes for 523 yards and six touchdowns for Louisville as he showed off speed reported to be 4.24 seconds in 40 yards.  Missed a 55-3, week four win over Vanderbilt. Sprained foot still not ready.

40. Isaiah Foskey, rJr, DE, Notre Dame, 6-5, 265, 1-2

Last week: No 36

Week 5: After a week off, Foskey and Notre Dame will face BYU at Allegiant stadium, home of the Las Vegas Raiders.

Previously: Foskey, considered a key on the Irish defense, didn't really stand out in their 21-10 loss at Ohio State. He finished with four tackles but didn't generate much pressure. One key reason was he was against excellent OSU tackle Paris Johnson. Despite a second straight loss - this time 26-21 to Marshall - Foskey's game improved with three tackles, an assist and a sack. In a week three, 24-17, win against Cal-Berkeley, Foskey started at DLE and was a menace as pass rusher. He collected four tackles, was in on two sacks (credited with 1.5) and hurried the quarterback six times. In a,  45-32, week four victory over North Carolina, Foskey was in on six tackles, created five hurries and made three key stops.

41. A.T. Perry, rJr, WR, Wake Forest, 6-5, 205, 1-2

Last week: No. 40

Week 5: In No. 15 Wake Forest's stunning, 31-21, win at Florida State, Perry caught eight passes (11 targets) for 114 yards and one touchdown.

Previously: Perry, one of the ACC's breakout stars of 2021, finished No. 3 in the conference with 1,293 receiving yards at 18.2 yards per catch and 15 TDs. He was targeted by more than footballs as several groups made NIL offerings to lure him away, but he opted to stay and team up with quarterback Sam Hartman, who had a blood condition that kept him out until week two. In season-opening, 44-10, win over the VMI Keydets, Perry caught three passes for 47 yards. With Hartman back at quarterback in a week two 45-25 thrashing of Vanderbilt, Perry was a happy man, catching five passes (10 targets) for 142 yards and a touchdown. In a week three, 37-36, win over Liberty, Perry caught only four passes in 11 targets for a total 11 yards. : In a grueling, 51-45, fourth week  double overtime loss to Clemson, Perry caught four passes (six targets) for 51 yards and a touchdown.

42. Keondre Coburn, rSr, DT, Texas, 6-2, 344, 2

Last week: No. 42

Week 5: In a 38-20 win against visiting West Virginia, Coburn lined up at DRE for 31 snaps and, although he was in on only one tackle, made his presence felt with three hurries.

Previously:  Began season with five tackles and a sack in 52-10 win over LA-Monroe. In a startling 20-19 loss to Alabama, Coburn had two tackles, hit the quarterback one time and caused another hurry. Started at DLE in week three 41-20 win over UTSA and was in on three tackles, made three hurries. After three excellent games, jumped up from No. 82 to No. 42 on our list. With all the attention on possible comeback of QB Quinn Ewers (who sat out again), the fact that Coburn did not start was pretty much overlooked in the Longhorns' 37-34 emotional overtime loss to Texas Tech. But it was academic as Coburn played a season-high 39 snaps in an efficient outing with three total tackles and four hurries. 

43. Marvin Mims Jr., Jr, WR, Oklahoma, 5-11, 182, 2

Last week: No. 41

Week 5: In an embarrassing, 55-24, drubbing by No. 17 TCU, Mims was mostly in the slot and caught only four of 10 passes thrown his way for a total of 40 yards. Best that could be said is he didn’t drop a pass against this rugged defense.

Previously: Oklahoma opened the season with a 45-13 win against visiting UTEP as Mims caught three of the four passes to him for 81 yards. Oklahoma downed Kent State in week two by 33-3 as Mims caught all seven passes thrown his way for 163 yards and two touchdowns. In a week three 49-14 spanking of Nebraska, Mims caught four of the six passes thrown his way fpr 66 yards. He also returned three punts for 60 yards. Until week three we had Mims rated in the 90 area as a third-round prospect based largely on return ability. In a fourth-week thriller,  Kansas State outlasted Oklahoma, 41-34, as Mims caught four of the seven passes to him for 87 yards and a touchdown.

44. Tyrique Stevenson, rJr, CB, Miami, 6-0, 214, 2

Last week: No. 43

Week 5: Miami took a bye, preparing for North Carolina.

Previously:  After two years with Georgia, Stevenson moved to Miami last season and started in ten games, finishing with 43 tackles, 2.5 for a loss, an interception and four pass breakups. In Miami's season-opening, 70-13, mauling of Bethune Cookman, Stevenson was credited with two tackles, one assist and no interceptions. In a 30-7 win over Southern Miss, Stevenson was targeted seven times and gave up three catches for 17 yards. He finished with two assists, an interception, and a pass breakup.  Stevenson continued to start at left corner in a week three 17-9 loss to Texas A&M. In the passing game the Aggies stayed away from Stevenson, who was in coverage on 20 snapes but his receivers were targeted only one time. So stats show he was in on only one tackle and returned two punts for minus three yards.  In a shocking, 45-31, fourth week loss to Middle Tennessee, Stevenson's receiver was targeted only twice and he gave up that one catch, although it was for a 71-yard touchdown. 

45. Carter Warren, rSr, OT, Pittsburgh, 6-5, 325, 2

Last week: No. 44

Week 5: In Pittsburgh's tough, 26-21 home loss to Georgia Tech, the Panthers ran up 411 yards, Warren played 30 snaps but was sidelined with an injury ant the remaining offensive line was dysfunctional. Thea game that ended with a flurry of penalty flags nd coach Pat Narduzzi said changes will be made.

Previously: In the opener, Pitt rallied to win the Backyard Brawl against West Virginia, 38-31, before a crowd of 77,622, largest ever for a sporting event in sports-crazy Pittsburgh. This was a game that had to be seen to be believed. So watch for a replay. Meantime, Warren did ok in this wide open game as Pitt gained 384 total yards, 308 passing by one time Southern Cal quarterback Kedon Slovis, despite being sacked five times. Warren gave up one hurry and one pressure. . In a second consecutive wild game, Pitt lost to Tennessee, 34-27, in overtime. Pitt collected 415 total yards, 273 in the air, but quarterback Kedon Slovis was battered in the game and left after a strip sack. He appeared to hit his head and shoulder on the ground. Warren did give up one sack and two hurries. Warren started at LT in a 34-13 win over Western Michigan as Pitt rolled up 417 yards of offense in week three. Against 14 pass rush plays, Warren kept his quarterback clean, not yielding a sack, hit, hurry or pressure for the first time this season. Pitt pummeled Rhode Island, 45-24, while compiling 460 total yards as Warren kept his QB clean with no sacks, hits or hurries in this week four clash.

46. Ronnie Hickman, rJr, S, Ohio State, 6-1, 207, 2

Last week: No. 45

Week 5: In 49-10 thrashing of Rutgers, Hickman did most his damage while lining up in the box 28 times and was in on six tackles and on hit on the QB. He was targeted one and gave up a ten yard catch.

Previously: Brown's 2020 season ended early when he tore an Achilles tendon in the second game against Penn State and missed three games in 2021 with other nagging injuries. In 2022 season-opener dramatic, 21-10 win over No. 5 Notre Dame, Hickman collected four total tackles, including two assists. The Irish offense was ripped by fans who thought it was to unimaginative and boring, but credit goes to the Buckeyes for giving up only 253 total yards, 177 through the air and no touchdown passes. In a, 45-0, week two cakewalk over Arkansas State, Hickman was in on one tackle and two assists. He allowed three catches on four targets for only 17 yards.  In a 77-21week three blowout over Toledo, Hickman had perhaps his best game of the season with a great interception in the third quarter that was a direct result of film work. He recognized a RPO tendency and from his safety spot and sprinted to cover wide receiver Jerjuan Newton and made Ohio State's first takeaway of the season. Hickman showed his versatility, strength and speed in a 52-21 fourth week win over Wisconsin. He started as a strong safety and played 26 of 54 snaps in the box, 21 at free safety, and was in on three tackles with two significant stops with one miss.

47. Cam Smith, rJr, CB, South Carolina, 6-0, 188, 2

Last week: No. 46

Week 5: In 49-10 win over Rutgers, Smith had one of his most efficient games.  He was in on six or seven tackles, made one hit on the quarterback and gave up a ten yard gain on the only play targeting his receiver.

Previously: In season-opening 35-14 win over Georgia State, the Gamecocks were in control, giving up 311 total yards, including only 111 in the air. Smith was credited with two total tackles. Smith was among four defenders injured and sidelined during week two, 44-30, loss to Arkansas. Smith was aggressive with a team leading seven tackles before being sidelined. Because of concussion, Smith was held out of week three, 48-7, thrashing by Georgia. In a 56-20 bounce-back fourth week win over Charlotte, Smith gave up one pass for four yards on three targets and rushed from the box three times and got one hurry. 

48. Olusegun Oluwatimi, rSr, C, Michigan, 6-3, 307, 2-3

Last Week: 69

Week 5: In a 27-14 win at Iowa, Michigan managed 327 yards total offense. Oluwatimi played 67 snaps and gave up only his second hit on the quarterback and third pressure all season.

Previously: In Michigan's first four games the offensive line came together surprisingly quickly as a unit, despite some injury problems early. Oluwatimi played all 264 snaps with his only trouble coming against UConn, when he gave up a his, a hurry and two pressures on the quarterback.

{+}49. Cedric Tillman, rSr, WR, Tennessee, 6-3, 215, 2

Last week: No. 48

Week 5. Coach Josh Heupel said Thursday "Cedric is able to move around…Ultimately, that will be a decision the medical staff and him make  whether or not he is going to play." We're guessing not. No. 8 Tennessee (4-0, 1-0 SEC) faces LSU (4-1, 2-0) Saturday (noon ET, ESPN). When the schedules came out it looked like a game featuring two of the top receivers in the country, Tillman and LSU Kayshon Boutte, who has been less than dazzling.

Previously: Last year, Tillman emerged as one of the SEC's best playmakers and became Tennessee's first 1,000-yard receiver since Justin Hunter in 2012.  Started all 13 games and finished with 64 catches for 1,081 yards and 12 touchdowns. Tillman led the Volunteers with six catches for 68 yards in a season-opening, 59-10, victory over the Ball State Cardinals.  Tillman caught nine passes for 162 yards and a touchdown in No. 24 Tennessee's dramatic, 34-27, overtime win over No. 17 Pitt. Those were the ratings at game time, anyway. In a 63-6 romp over the Akron Zips, Tillman started as outside receiver and stayed out there for 20 plays.  He caught two of three passes thrown his way for 16 yards but injured his ankle in the second quarter. Through three games he caught 28 passes for 246 yards and a touchdown, but he turned his ankle severely in week three against the Akron Zips and then apparently had surgery before Tennessee's week four, 38-33, win over Florida. The surgery was not announced at that time. Update --Tillman reportedly had surgery on his ankle in an attempt to get him back on the field sooner, but there are no guarantees

50. Zach Charbonnet, Sr, RB, UCLA, 6-1, 220, 2

Last Week: 57

Week 5: In No. 18 UCLA's statement win, 40-32, over previously unbeaten and previously No. 21 Washington, Charbonnet rushed 22 times for 124 yards and a touchdown. He added three catches on four targets for another 55 yards as the Bruins outgained the Huskies, 499-419 yards. 

Previously: Charbonnet was a key rusher and receiver in helping the Bruins to a 4-0, and then 5-0 record. In five games he carried 64 times for 416 yards and five touchdowns and caught 11 of the 12 passes thrown to him for 142 yards. He is responsible for 20 first downs and has not committed a penalty. 

 --Stats and data from NCAA, Associated Press, team/online sites and NFL Draft Scout sources.



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Shedeur Sanders closing in on CU Buffs single-season records through pain of all the sacks and hits

PUBLISHED November 13, 2023 at 12:38 p.m. | UPDATED: November 13, 2023 at 12:40 p.m.BOULDER — Shedeur Sanders is closing ...

Tenth Anniversary of Kick Six: Inside video, "Official" look at Historic Iron Bowl Shocker

Published Nov. 13, 2023, 6:00 a.m.By Creg Stephenson See and hear history behind Kick Six (excuse the ads, but this is ...

Goodman: Jimbo Fisher is out and Nick Saban wins again

Updated: Nov. 13, 2023, 10:00 a.m.|By Joseph GoodmanJimbo Fisher is out at Texas A&M, which goes to show that even when a ...

Huard on Huskies: Why a win over No. 10 Oregon St would be huge

The No. 5 UW Huskies’ quest to make the College Football Playoff went through the two-time defending Pac-12 champions on ...

USC’s loss to Oregon exposes clear flaws in program-building up front

EUGENE, Ore. — In January, Lincoln Riley was on the sidelines at SoFi for the College Football Playoff championship game, ...

Two years after winning school-record 12 games, Brady Hoke out as Aztecs football coach

Brady Hoke is out as San Diego State’s football coach.SDSU released a statement Monday morning saying that Hoke is retiring, ...

Oregon’s Bo Nix named Pac-12 offensive player of the week for third time in 2023

Oregon’s Bo Nix earned his third weekly honor from the Pac-12.Nix, who went 23 of 31 for a season-high 412 yards with four ...

Oregon Ducks’ head coach Dan Lanning mentioned as a leading candidate for Texas A&M job

Oregon Ducks head coach Dan Lanning has been mentioned as a leading candidate to replace Jimbo Fisher as coach of the Texas ...

After ‘tough day,’ Boise State AD searches for a football coach; defensive analyst promoted

Boise State athletic director Jeramiah Dickey was on the job for less than a week the last time he began a search for a football ...
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