You don't have to be a publication devoted to professional football to recognize that ex-Vol Eric Berry will be one of the early picks in this year's draft, scheduled April 22-24 in New York City. Pro Football Weekly ranks him No. 1 among safety prospects and projects him going to the Denver Broncos with pick 10 in Round 1.
PFW describes Berry as "very instinctive, athletic and physical," and notes that he "plays bigger than his size. Fills the alley with force and plays with urgency. Accelerates through contact and hits like a ton of bricks."
As for Berry's negatives, the magazine says he "has some tightness in his hips and could stand to bulk up in order to better handle the constant pounding of the pro game."
Other SEC safeties that PFW projects to be selected in the draft include Florida's Major Wright (No. 7 at the position, Round 2-3), LSU's Chad Jones (No. 8, Round 2-3), Georgia's Rashad Jones (No. 10, Round 3-4), Ole Miss' Kendrick Lewis (No. 14, Round 4-5) and LSU's Harry Coleman (No. 16, free agent).
Draft experts are split on Tennessee defensive tackle Dan Williams, including the ones at Pro Football Weekly. In his one-round mock draft, Nolan Nawrocki projects Williams going to the Indianapolis Colts with the 31st pick in Round 1. A few pages deeper into the magazine, however, Williams is ranked No. 5 among tackle prospects and pegged to go in Round 2 or 3.
The text accompanying Williams' positional rating notes that he is "stoutly built with a thick trunk. Very strong at the point of attack and can anchor against the run. Moves well and is light on his feet for a 330-pounder ..."
PFW says Williams' negative traits are that he "lacks upper-body strength and needs to do a better job using his hands to play off blocks - too often stays tied up. Not an inside rusher and cannot win with quickness."
Other SEC tackles rated as draft-worthy by PFW are Alabama's Terrence Cody (No. 6, Round 2-3), LSU's Al Woods (No. 8, Round 2-3), Georgia's Geno Atkins (No. 14, Round 3-4), Kentucky's Corey Peters (No. 19, Round 5-6), Georgia's Kade Weston (No. 20, Round 5-6), Georgia's Jeff Owens (No. 25, free agent) and Arkansas's Malcolm Sheppard (No. 27, free agent).
Pro Football Weekly does not list ex-Vol Dennis Rogan among its top 25 cornerback prospects but mentions him last among 10 "Best of the Rest" with the notation: "Versatile return man surprised by coming out."