Scout's Take: Hudson, Tulloch, and Williams

An anonymous National Football League scout took time out of his busy schedule to field questions from Pack Pride about those Wolfpack players who could get selected in the upcoming NFL Draft. Here are some of his thoughts on defensive back Marcus Hudson, linebacker Stephen Tulloch, and tight end T.J. Williams.

Marcus Hudson
Position:
Defensive Back
College: North Carolina State
Height: 6-foot-1.1
Weight: 194
Official 40-Yard Dash Time At Combine: Did Not Run

Unlike several other Wolfpack players, Marcus Hudson was unable to participate at the NFL Scouting Combine, as he was still recovering from an ankle injury suffered at the Senior Bowl. However, he still remains on the radar of several NFL teams.

"Marcus Hudson is a good player," an NFL Scout told Pack Pride. "He's kind of a cornerback/safety tweener, but he can probably function at either in the league.

"I think ideally he would be a safety. Although he didn't run at the combine, he will be fine as long as he runs okay at Pro Day."

Marcus Hudson

Hudson, a four-year starter for the Wolfpack, played both free safety and cornerback during his career. His versatility is intriguing to NFL scouts and should help his draft status.

"He has very good size and is a physical guy who has pretty good awareness in coverage. I think he's in the 3-4 range right now. He will probably be a third or fourth-round pick."

Hudson compares favorably to another NC State player who made his mark in college with his versatility. Like Hudson, Brian Williams played cornerback and safety for the Wolfpack, and now he is one of the top defensive backs in the NFL.

The Minnesota Vikings star has made a good living because of his ability to play both positions, and that is the type of potential Hudson has.

"Hudson is a little bit like Brian Williams who came out of there and plays for the Vikings, but not as fast. He was a guy who can play either position, and both are physical and tough.

"Hudson is taller than Williams, but I think they are similar players and bring a lot to the table."

Hudson is fundamentally sound and has been well-coached while at NC State. He sticks to his man tight in coverage is very physical at the line of scrimmage. He displays a nice, smooth backpedal and transition. He plays with no wasted motion and can come up in run support.

He could be a draft steal for teams looking for a versatile defensive back, as was Williams, a fourth-round pick of the Vikings in 2002.


Stephen Tulloch
Position:
Outside Linebacker
College: North Carolina State
Height: 5-foot-10.6
Weight: 241
Official 40-Yard Dash Time At Combine: 4.86 seconds
Official Vertical Jump At Combine: 33.5 inches

Like John McCargo, Stephen Tulloch's decision to enter the draft was somewhat of a surprise. However, it sounds like he may have made a good decision based on what he brings to the table.

"I think McCargo and Morris would have benefited much more by staying than Tulloch. Tulloch is what he is. He has been super productive, and would have been productive again had he stayed, but he isn't going to get any taller, so why not come out?"

Tulloch's combine effort was labeled "disappointing," but he has a chance to improve on his numbers at NC State's Pro Day, which is scheduled for March 22.

Tulloch tackles Vernon Davis
"He's a second day guy right now, unless he gets the 40 time down at Pro Day. We actually value the combine and Pro Day in the same manner. We usually just take the fastest time regardless of where it is at, so he still has a chance to improve his numbers."

Tulloch is never going to be a guy to standout during testing drills, but on the field his productivity and relentless motor is what impresses NFL scouts.

"I like Tulloch a lot, probably more than most teams do actually. He isn't tall, he ran slow at the combine, but he is a really good, instinctive football player."

The comparisons have been made before, but it goes without saying that Tulloch's attributes and productivity will be compared to Miami Dolphin star linebacker Zach Thomas.

Like Tulloch, Thomas entered the draft as an undersized linebacker who produced in college, starring for the Texas Tech Red Raiders. A fifth-round pick, Thomas is now considered one of the top linebackers in the National Football League, despite being just 5-foot-11 and 228-pounds.

"I would compare him to Zach Thomas in terms of style of play. He just sees things so quickly that he is able to get into position and make up for his lack of size."


T.J. Williams
Position:
Tight End
College: North Carolina State
Height: 6-foot-2.3
Weight: 259
Official 40-Yard Dash Time At Combine: 4.73 seconds

Talk about bad timing. T.J. Williams will go down as one of, if not the, best tight ends to ever play at NC State, as for two seasons he led the Wolfpack in receptions, yet he's often overlooked because of how loaded this year's draft is with tight ends.

T.J. Williams

Featuring phenoms such as Vernon Davis, Anthony Fasano, Dominique Byrd, and Leonard Pope, this is considered the best tight end class ever, and because of it Williams probably won't be drafted as high as he would in most years. However, he is still a good player with the potential to have a productive NFL career.

"I think he is going to be a good player. He can do a little bit of everything. He can catch, and he can stretch the seam. He is not a dominating blocker, but he is effective."

Expect Williams to be selected in the early stages of the second day.

"I would say he will go somewhere between rounds three and five. In my opinion, probably closer to round three. The concerns with him are he lacks ideal height and he didn't time too well at the combine. He's kind of mechanical in his routes, but that can be fixed.

"I don't remember exactly how many catches he had this year for NC State, but everyone knows of the quarterback trouble in Raleigh."

Teams expressing interest in Williams include the San Diego Chargers, who scouted him closely during the Senior Bowl practices, and the Carolina Panthers.


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