Media rights summary:
  • Image ap-newmexicobowl-slideshow.jpg must be uploaded to the network.

Syndication Flag: FALSE
Linking Flag: FALSE
Content is published: TRUE
Original Source is empty: TRUE
Article may be syndicated: No
Article may be linked: No
NFL draft prep: New Mexico Bowl prospects
Share This Post

Gildan New Mexico Bowl
Washington State vs Colorado State (2 p.m., ESPN)

Deone Bucannon - S, Washington State, No. 20
The 2013 Walter Camp Second Team All-American is a big (6-1/215), physical safety who loves delivering the kill shot. He's most comfortable playing downhill against the run, where his size and speed lead to some big hits. In coverage, he doesn't change direction particularly well as it looks like his center of gravity is too high (he's got long legs). But Bucannon is a smart player and uses his size and arm length to make things difficult for receivers.

He's also a menace to pass catchers trying their luck over the middle. While this may not play as well as it did 25 years ago because of the tendency of referees to throw a flag on any big hits, the fact that he delivers them sticks in the back of receivers' minds nonetheless. Bucannon isn't a complete player, but he's one of the few safeties in this draft I see as a potential starter, and should be off the board somewhere in the late second to early third round.

Highlights: Bucannon's Big Hit vs. Auburn 2013

Weston Richburg - OC, Colorado State, No. 70
Like safety, the center position is not particularly deep going into the 2014 draft. Richburg is vying for the top spot among centers with Arkansas' Travis Swanson. Richburg, a two-time Rams team captain, has started every game since arriving in Fort Collins as a freshman, including games at guard and tackle. Richburg has good size (6-4/300) and looks even bigger. Stout at the point of attack, Richburg led the way for a very dangerous CSU rushing attack in 2013.

While he's not going to blow DTs off the line, he doesn't get pushed back too often, and uses quick feet to angle off defenders. In the passing game he adjusts to pressure well and rarely allows penetration up the middle. He doesn't look like a great athlete, but he works screens well and is able to locate defenders in the open field. Richburg should be off the board somewhere in the middle rounds and I would be surprised if he wasn't a starter by the end of his rookie season.

Highlights: Richburg vs. Alabama 2013

Others to watch

Crockett Gillmore - TE, Colorado State, No. 10
Gillmore is a tall (6-6/255) pass-catching tight end who has great hands.