Ranks 15 proCanes in Their Top 200 Current NFL Players

2. Andre Johnson - Houston Texans
Comment: Johnson has provided an explosive threat on the perimeter and has put up elite numbers. He has a rare combination of size, speed, athleticism and receiving skills. He has the speed to stretch the secondary deep as well as the route-running skills and size to be a threat on underneath routes across the middle or to the sidelines. He is explosive off the line and can overpower or avoid cornerbacks trying to jam him at the line of scrimmage. Johnson can sink his hips to get in and out of his breaks with a burst to separate and shows a second gear to pull away from most defenders once he gains a step on them.

14. Ed Reed - Baltimore Ravens
Comment: Reed was banged up some in 2009 and missed four regular-season games. Reed has rare instincts that enable him to be around the ball often. He has elite range and is one of the few backend defenders whom quarterbacks truly fear. Reed is a game-changer from his deep center-field position and allows the Ravens to be very aggressive with their schemes. Not only is he a supreme ball hawk with rare anticipation and ball skills, he is an extremely dangerous weapon with the ball in his hands and is an immediate threat to score. He is also a superb kick- and punt-blocker when used in that capacity. Reed has been a mainstay in the Ravens’ secondary and there is a noticeable drop-off when he is not in the lineup.

32. Reggie Wayne - Indianapolis Colts
Comment: With the departure of Marvin Harrison before the 2009 season, Wayne became the Colts’ No. 1 receiver and responded with a big year. He has good size for the position with excellent deep speed, quickness, agility and body control. He can sink his hips to get in and out of breaks with a burst to separate from defenders and has the extra gear to maintain the separation. He does a good job of reading coverages and finding the soft spots in zone to provide a good target for the quarterback. He is effective after the catch and shows vision as well as elusiveness in the open field.

36. Vince Wilfork - New England Patriots
Comment: Wilfork is coming off his sixth year in the league where he had another solid season before sustaining a foot injury late in the season. He has the size, strength and natural leverage to be productive versus double-team blocks as well as penetrate gaps when in a stunting mode. He can locate the ball after contact quickly and feels pad pressure well to restrict running lanes. Wilfork is a very good athlete for his size showing lateral agility between the tackles. He can push the pocket with a bull rush technique from the inside, but his production as pass-rusher is average at best. Wilfork is a good football player who continues to be the centerpiece for the Patriots 3-4 defensive front.

42. Jon Beason - Carolina Panthers
Comment: Beason has started all 16 games for three consecutive seasons and led the team in tackles in 2009 with 141. He has arguably become the face of the Panthers’ defense and provides leadership both on the field as well as in the locker room. He is a tackling machine
who brings instincts, effort and competitiveness. He is not the biggest linebacker, but does bring a lot of pop and explosion to his tackles.
He is more effective when protected by a big defensive line, but flashes the ability to step up and shed blocks in time to make the play. He gets good depth in his drops and is quick to pull the trigger both against the run and when closing on the pass.

58. Frank Gore - San Francisco 49ers
Comment: Gore has been a quality back who has consistently produced over the five years he has been in the league. He has gained in excess of 1,000 yards in each of the past four years, including 1,120 yards in 2009 with an average of 4.9 yards per carry. He is a compact runner who does an excellent job of running behind his pads and has the kind of balance that consistently gains yards after contact. Gore fights for yards and does a good job of finishing runs off but lacks the premier top end speed that makes him a big home-run threat. He is a good receiver out of the backfield as well as on downfield routes and knows how to read coverages and adjust his routes. He is a patient runner who does a good job of letting his offensive line create run lanes.

72. DJ Williams - Denver Broncos
Comment: Williams rebounded in 2009 after missing five games during the 2008 season due to injuries. He is an extremely gifted athlete who possesses great lateral range and the kind of quickness, agility and body control to be a factor in coverage. He can come off the edge with an explosive burst of speed or can slip through small creases when blitzing the quarterback. Williams has enough upper-body strength to take on and shed blockers and shows the ability to unload with a good pop when making the tackle in the hole. He lacks the top bulk and power to squeeze blocks down and force the ball carrier to bounce it to the outside. He has improved on his route recognition and can close on the ball with a good burst once he pulls the trigger when in zone coverage. He is still improving and appears to be on the verge of becoming an elite linebacker.

91. Kellen Winslow - Tampa Bay Buccanneers
Comment: Winslow is a former first-round draft pick who can be a franchise tight end when healthy. He is a big matchup problem as he is generally too fast and too athletic for linebackers to cover and can overpower most safeties. He can stretch the secondary down the middle and will often line up wide to match up against smaller cornerbacks. He is a willing blocker who shows effort and tenacity, but lacks the size and power to be a dominating inline blocker.

111. Vernon Carey - Miami Dolphins
Comment: He is the most versatile offensive lineman on the Dolphins roster because he has played four positions at one point or another. Carey has settled in well at the right tackle spot. He possesses a nice combination of size and strength for the position. He is a good overall athlete. He has left tackle-quality feet and athleticism. He does a good job of protecting the edges in pass protection and adjusts well versus double moves. Carey will ride the defender wide and allow the QB to move up into the pocket. He plays with good leverage in the run game. He is a solid player on an underrated offensive line.

119. Ray Lewis - Baltimore Ravens
Comment: Lewis, entering his 15th year, is coming off another extremely productive season. He has diminishing skills, but his experience, toughness and instincts enable him to be a force in the middle of the Ravens’ defense. He is a powerfully built player with outstanding tackling power between the tackles. His ability to wrap up and tackle with jolting force is still evident. He has excellent instincts and vision to react quickly to the run and pass. He has outstanding football intelligence and is able to make all the checks and adjustments needed in the complex Ravens scheme. He uses his hands to work through trash and has natural power to run through blockers. Lewis is a crafty veteran who takes great angles in pursuit and maintains leverage on the ball carrier. He is a solid pass defender primarily because of excellent anticipation and route recognition. Lewis has been remarkably durable over his career, but he clearly is on the backside of his career.

140. Eric Winston - Houston Texans
Comment: Winston has been the Texans’ starting right tackle for the past four years and has done a good job of solidifying his side of the line. He has excellent dimensions for the position with good initial quickness, body control and balance. He has a good understanding of blocking schemes and angles and is quick to engage and work his blocks. He shows good recognition of games up front like twists and stunts, and he plays the game smart. Winston is a good knee-bender who can keep his pad level down to leverage blocks and does a good job of keeping his feet moving to sustain and finish blocks off. He will overextend and let his weight get too far forward when in space and struggles to react and adjust to counter moves by the pass-rusher. Overall, he is a solid right tackle who still has potential to grow in technique and strength.

148. Jonathan Vilma - New Orleans Saints
Comment: Vilma is a slightly undersized middle linebacker who can be a disruptive playmaker thanks to rare speed, agility and a very good nose for the ball. He is a student of the game who understands blocking angles, defensive schemes and how to leverage his way to the ball. He has excellent range laterally and shows a good burst to close on the ball. He pretty much needs to stay protected by the defensive front as he lacks the size and power to take on blockers and squeeze the play down. He gets very good depth in his drops and shows good route recognition as well as the ability to read the quarterback to get a jump on the ball.

162. Brandon Meriweather - New England Patriots
Comment: Meriweather had another productive season in 2009 and has settled in as the Patriots’ starting safety. Meriweather has adequate size with very good athletic skills for the position. He displays good instincts, speed and range. He shows good versatility as he is used in a variety of alignments. Meriweather still has some inconsistencies in coverage. He struggles to maintain leverage on wide receivers and has taken poor angles out of breaks. He’s aggressive and active in run support and has been one of the most consistent players on the New England roster.

196. Calais Campbell - Arizona Cardinals
Comment: After spending his rookie season as a situational backup with the Cardinals, Campbell earned a starting position and played in all 16 games, starting 15 and finishing with 48 tackles and seven sacks in 2009. He has rare size for the position, and he is quicker and shows better speed than you’d expect for someone with his length. He shows a good feel for the position as he recognizes blocking schemes and will fight through pressure with good hand use. He must work on keeping his pad level down to leverage blocks and could use more upper-body strength to control and disengage. He has a lot of potential and has become a quality starter.

200. Devin Hester - Chicago Bears
Comment: Hester has become a larger part of the Bears’ air attack and was utilized less as a pure return specialist in 2009. He is an excellent athlete with outstanding speed, burst and quickness. He has developed as a route-runner and has made marked improvement in this area. Hester can eat up a defender’s cushion quickly with deceptive push off the line of scrimmage and can stretch deep zones with a second gear downfield. Hester is an explosive player with the ball in his hands because he can distort angles in the open field. He has average size, struggles to break tackles downfield and can get rerouted at times versus press man coverage. Hester continues to be utilized as a punt and kick returner but has lost some of his edge in this area.

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