Editor’s note: NFL.com analyst Lance Zierlein is constantly talking to NFL and college sources about players in the college game. In this space each week, Zierlein will share some of what NFL folks are discussing in their circles. This week, he shares what he’s hearing about one of the draft’s top QBs, a small-school OT prospect and this year’s CB class.

The scoop: "I think (Mitch) Trubisky has the same talent as Carson Wentz, but Wentz is way bigger and he was just special from a football intelligence and interviewing standpoint. Trubisky is barely going to (measure) 6-foot-2, so he better kill it in combine meetings." — AFC national scout on the North Carolina QB

The skinny: It wasn’t until this scout brought up Wentz’s size that I went back and looked at his combine measurements and realized he was right. Wentz, the No. 2 overall pick last year, measured in at 6-5, 237 pounds with 10-inch hands. These are prototype numbers for the position and Wentz’s convincing combine interviews are well documented. Currently, I have a higher grade on Trubisky than I had on Wentz (6.70 to 6.23) last year, but there’s definitely some similarity in their play attributes. Trubisky’s size should be good enough, but what we see on the field and what we don’t see off the field at the combine will likely determine his slotting on teams’ draft boards.


The scoop: "I finished watching him at the Senior Bowl and I’ve (studied) two (of his) regular season games. He’s got a really crisp punch and you can see he has the feet and some strength, but I think he’s going to be too small. He’s a thin-waist guy and he doesn’t look like he can hold weight. It’s pretty hard to be 295 to 305 (pounds) and make it anymore in the league as a starter." — NFL offensive line coach on Troy offensive tackle Antonio Garcia

The skinny: I am a big fan of Garcia’s because of his length, athleticism and nasty demeanor. I see a player with tremendous potential who could become a very good left tackle in the league. However, there is no getting around the weight issue with him. He weighed in at 293 pounds at the Senior Bowl. I spoke with him after a practice and asked him about his weight — he thinks he can carry 305 pounds. That might not be enough, according to this offensive line coach. If he fails to carry 300-plus pounds at the combine, it might be difficult for a team to take him inside the first three rounds.

The scoop: "I was blown away when I looked at our database and realized how many really big and long cornerbacks are out there in this draft. That’s the trend though. We used to see those guys move to safety, but not anymore. Seattle, Carolina and Kansas City all love those kinds of guys. If you are long and can play the ball, you are getting pushed up in this draft." — NFC pro personnel director

The skinny: Co-sign. Speed matters, but more teams are beginning to trend toward length and takeaways over all else at the position. While there have always been teams who covet size at cornerback (including Green Bay), Seattle’s combination of Brandon Browner and Richard Sherman from years ago had to be an eye-opener for teams. Those big cornerbacks are hardly speed burners, but they created tremendous issues for quarterbacks looking to attack them outside the numbers. I counted six draftable cornerbacks who should measure 6-foot-2 or taller in this year’s draft. That is rare.

Follow Lance Zierlein on Twitter @LanceZierlein.

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