Which Terps do you believe are headed to the next level?
I began thinking about this when senior cornerback Kevin Barnes was pronounced out for the season with a fractured shoulder blade. Ralph Friedgen says Barnes will miss the Senior Bowl (since it's in January) but be available for NFL combines.
Before beginning my Terps coverage this season, I knew Darrius Heyward-Bey had pro potential. Now that I've seen him play regularly, I have little doubt. It's not only that he's fast, but that he has Santana Moss-like ability to go up and get the deep ball in traffic. Quite a few of his catches have come on throws that are adequate but less than perfect.
The only mystery with Heyward-Bey is why he goes stretches without seeing the ball. Is it that he has problems getting open? I think it's more a combination of defenses rolling toward him and the Terps simply not being able to deliver him the ball (poor pass protection, errant throws).
Here's my pick for a future NFL talent: Kenny Tate. He's just a freshman and largely unproven. But he's got size, speed, hands and smarts. "He's got it all. He's a freak," Danny Oquendo (who also wants to take an NFL shot) told me recently. The question with Tate is whether he develops at safety or returns to wide receiver.