There are a couple guys I believe are getting overlooked in this draft and because of this, combined with their ability and size, they should both appeal to Schneider and the Hawks scouting dept.
David Amerson , NC State, CB: He went from being an All-American in 2011 after making 13 INTs to a forgotten prospect not far into the 2012 season. A shaky performance against the Vols' dangerous group of receivers in the opener didn't help, but I expect Amerson to create some buzz again when scouts eyeball him. This is a 6-2, 200-pound corner who could crack 4.4 in Indy and get some folks excited again. (via CBS Sports Bruce Feldman)
Amerson was simply ridiculous as a sophomore racking up 13 INTs, one short of the FBS record 14, and was named the nation's best cornerback at age 19. Looking at his size, the numbers he put up in 2011, his coaches saying he is their best practice player, and his potential to shine in the metrics loved by the Hawks scouting dept makes me think he could very well be a guy the Hawks are interested in. He didn't have an amazing 2012 as he was beaten deep by teams over the top, including the Tennesee duo. However, looking at the tape you see he was beaten in off-man and zone coverage. Rarely did NC State use Amerson in press-man and he also had very little help over the top. To me, a 32 year old former high school and college player who now watches 2-3 hours of film everyday instead of going to the gym, this kid looks like he was built to play in Carroll's system. He isn't going to be a great inside corner, but Browner is a free agent after this season and Amerson could be the perfect fit to take his place. I don't see Amerson going later than the 2nd rd, so the Hawks may have to trade up if interested. In fact, the Hawks could trade down with their 1st rd pick and attempt to move up 10-15 picks with their 2nd rd choice, thus acquiring 2 picks in the 30-40 range. I could see the Hawks possibly doing that if they were able to still land one of their preferred DTs in the 2nd rd. Or, the Hawks could think he is garbage and I'm just an idiot who spent way too much time researching this guy.
John Simon, Ohio State, DL-OLB: Urban Meyer and seemingly every other coach who has been around this guy raves about his motor and toughness. Simon, the Big Ten's Defensive Player of the Year, is a guy who figures to have a shot at benching 225 in the 40s. He's also pretty explosive off the bench, having broad-jumped 10 feet and, according to OSU strength staff, has clocked in the 4.6s in the 40 despite weighing 270 pounds. A shoulder injury, which kept him out of the Senior Bowl, is something that is worth monitoring. A bigger question will be whether he's seen as stiff when it comes to positional drills as team project where he'll play at the next level. He had a team-best 16 tackles for loss and seven sacks in 2011, adding 53 tackles and earning first-team All-Big Ten honors. The sparkplug of the Ohio State defense, Simon played a lot of five-technique in the Buckeyes' hybrid 3-4 scheme as a junior, showing his versatility inside at defensive tackle and in space at linebacker. Simon earned All-Big Ten first-team honors in 2012 and was one of eight semifinalists for the Lott IMPACT Trophy. He led the Big Ten with 9.0 sacks and was third with 14.5 tackles for loss. (via CBS Sports Bruce Feldman)
I don't know how many people saw Simon the last two years, but the guy just doesn't quit. His production has been awesome, as you can see above, but he really doesn't have a set position going into the NFL. I think he could end up playing the 5 technique, though he will have to put on some more weight. Obviously playing in the Bucks hybrid 3-4 you would think he would fit well with a team like the Patriots, Steelers, or even the 49ers. The dude does remind me a lot of Justin Smith. Essentially he was Justin Smith in college. I do think sometimes we label guys as not being a good fit for the 4-3, or vice versa, a little too much. A guy like Simon could fit somewhere in any defense and find a way to be productive. He is mentioned anywhere from the 3rd to the 6th round, and I see him as a nice pick with a lot of potential upside. A guy that can play anywhere on the line, is strong and athletic, and has always succeeded against top competition could be a nice piece. In 2011 and spring training a year ago I kept telling my buddy who writes for a Mariners blog that Kyle Seager is a everyday major leaguer and maybe a potential all-star. He thought he was a decent backup, but I told him that the guy is hungry and everywhere he goes he just hits and works his ass off. Different sports, but I played both and there are just some guys who have the IT factor that cannot be measured. Ahem, Russell Wilson. Again maybe I'm just a blithering moron and Simon doesn't have a position where he can be used, but I will take the odds with this guy and wouldn't be surprised if Pete and John would as well.
Go Hawks! - Russell Wilson 3:12