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January 30, 2013
NFL comparisons: Bigelow, Treadwell
The close of the evaluation period for the Class of 2013 produced few changes at the top of the Rivals100, but as the players jockeyed for position, the Rivals.com team of analysts saw the highlights and lowlights of each prospect.
Generally, the most difficult aspect of ranking players is making comparisons and projections, but it is the task most asked of analysts. With just days left until National Signing Day, the Rivals.com team will break down the best of the best by comparing them to players on the NFL level.
Each day, there will be a breakdown of two players from the Top 10 of the Rivals100.
No. 6 Kenny Bigelow, defensive tackle, Elkton (Md.) Eastern Christian
Attributes: 6-foot-3, 295 pounds
Top Schools: Committed to USC
NFL comparison: Justin Smith, San Francisco 49ers
Tale of the Tape: Bigelow is listed one inch shorter and 10 pounds lighter, but the two play so similarly that size is almost a moot point. Bigelow is a massive defensive lineman with little bad weight and room to add to his frame. He is powerful in his upper and lower body, explosive off the snap and relentless in pursuit. He has a tremendous bull rush and can run down quarterbacks.
When we last saw him: Bigelow proved to be a dominant force when he wanted to be at the U.S. Army All-American Bowl, but he didn't show his dominance consistently. On the first day of practice, he came out wanting to show everyone what he could do and was named the top performer for the East squad. On the second day, Bigelow rattled off three consecutive sacks to end practice but was barely noticed until then. It was almost the same story in the game. Bigelow got a sack on the first play and had only one other tackle the rest of the game.
Analyst's take: "Kenny is physical and fast coming off of the ball, and he is very smart about finding a hole in the blocking scheme and accelerating through it to disrupt the play. He is a guy who, if he chooses to, can take over a game, and when he gets going he is unstoppable. He is a player who, when he puts his mind to it, can be the best on the field and someone who needs to be accounted for. The only thing that can slow him down is him." -- Adam Friedman, Rivals.com Northeast analyst.
No. 5 Laquon Treadwell, wide receiver, Crete (Ill.) Crete-Monee
Attributes: 6-foot-3, 198 pounds, 4.5 40
Top schools: Committed to Ole Miss
NFL comparison: Demaryius Thomas, Denver Broncos
Tale of the tape: Each is listed at the same height. Thomas has more weight, but that comes with age. He was thinner as a prospect. There are few guys with Thomas' size who can be a possession receiver and stretch the field. His speed and size have made for a tough matchup, and the same holds true for Treadwell.
When we last saw him: Treadwell put on a show at the Under Armour All-America Game, demonstrating that he can be a very technical route runner. When he combines that attribute with his athletic ability, he becomes a tough man to cover. Treadwell finished the game with six catches for 46 yards, all while being covered by one of the nation's top corners, Vernon Hargreaves III. Had he drawn an easier assignment, or if Hargreaves hadn't made some spectacular plays on the ball, Treadwell may have finished as the top offensive player in the game. He was named the best route runner of any receiver in the game.
Analyst's take: "A big, physical receiver who can also be a downfield threat is a unique combination. It is very rare to find a player at the high school level with those attributes, let alone in the NFL to make a comparison. What Thomas has done in the NFL and while at Georgia Tech is something that I really expect Treadwell to be able to replicate at Ole Miss." -- Mike Farrell, Rivals.com national analyst.