Sanford Scouting Reports

Scott's latest Sanford Scouting Reports feature receivers Xavier Castille and Lee Morris and DE Eli Howard.

Xavier Castille

2015 WR, Rockwall HS (Rockwall, Texas)

Athleticism: Castille is one of the quicker wide receivers SMU is going after at the moment, and it’s easily noticeable when watching his film. He isn’t the tallest, which is why he’s only a 3-star, but Castille is a serious sleeper and has started to receive more and more interest. The senior wideout runs well, and has the ability to adjust in the air to make the catch. He also has good balance and feet that allow him to stop on a dime and make a move to beat the defender. The receiver also won’t shy away from contact and uses the stiff arm well.

Route Running: Castille’s go-to move is the double move, which with his quickness, is his most effective move. The wideout gets off the line of scrimmage quickly, really sells his routes, and does a nice job of using his hands to fend off his defender and create separation. Castille has nice breakaway speed, but can also adjust the route he is running to the quarterback’s throw. He also is able to line up anywhere on the field, including in the backfield, and has no trouble finding the ball no matter what route he runs.

Hands: The 3-star receiver has very good hands, and does a nice job of even hauling in the hard-to-reach ones. When watching his film you can tell Castille has soft hands, and catching looks like it’s second nature to him at this point. He even has the ability to play wildcat quarterback, doing a nice job of passing, running and even catching double passes. On some occasions however, Castille does have the tendency to catch with his body, which most receivers do but can become a bad habit that will cause dropped passes.

Offers: SMU, Oklahoma State, Washington, Connecticut, Illinois State, Louisiana-Monroe, Memphis, Nevada, New Mexico, Tennessee State, Texas State, UTEP and Tulsa.
HT: 5-10
WT: 195 pounds
Scout Position Rank: 133
Texas WR Rank: 26

Xavier Castille Highlights

Lee Morris

2015 WR/TE, Allen HS (Allen, Texas)

Athleticism: At 6-foot-2, 199-pounds, Morris is a little on the shorter side for tight ends, but will undoubtedly make up for it with his speed. Morris had to work his way up in the Allen program, but his senior year (43 receptions, 888 yards, 11 TDs) showed that he has the ability to compete with the best. The wideout lined up most of the time in the slot, and some at tight end, and was matched up against linebackers. When watching his film you get a good look at how he fairs in the situations he’ll face at the collegiate level. Morris runs well and has the leaping ability of a wide receiver, making him a big target for quarterbacks.

Route Running/Hands: Catching passes from arguably the best high school quarterback of all-time made things easier for Morris, but the senior did his part. Morris does a solid job of selling double moves and uses his quick feet to run crisp and concise routes. Mostly matched up against linebackers, Morris had the speed advantage, but he still had to find a way around the big-bodied defenders, which he was able to do often. Morris is also a physical player and shows that by using his hands to create separation from his defenders when he is in the slot. When lined up as a tight end, Morris needs to use his hands more to separate himself from defenders because linebackers will easily reroute him at the next level.

Projected Blocking: With no film of his blocking, this is just an estimate, but Morris has the tenacity to be a solid blocking tight end at the next level. He doesn’t have the size of a prototypical tight end, but with a mean streak and good strength, he’ll do just fine as long as he can win the leverage battle.

Offers: SMU and New Mexico State
HT: 6-2 (Nike SPARQ Verified)
WT: 199 pounds (Nike SPARQ Verified)
40-yard Dash: 4.59 seconds (Nike SPARQ Verified)
Vertical: 34.7 inches (Nike SPARQ Verified)

Lee Morris Highlights

Eli Howard

2015 DE, San Angelo Central HS (San Angelo, Texas)

Technique: Howard lines up with a wide base and maintains a balanced stance as he fires off the line. The defensive end does a nice job of making his reads before committing to anything and does a nice job of maintaining his leverage on both run and pass plays. Howard also uses his hands very well, whether it’s to shake off an offensive lineman or grab and pull down a running back that’s getting away from him.

Versus the pass: Howard is not the most explosive pass rusher, but the senior does a nice job of keeping his eyes on the ball, allowing him to adjust his moves to where the quarterback is. If a pass goes up with Howard still engaged with the offensive lineman, he gets his hands up to try and deflect the pass. If Howard is able to beat the offensive lineman with a swim move, his speed allows him to quickly close on the ball handler. As Howard gets stronger, look for him to develop a good bull rush with his already low center of gravity.

Versus the run: Howard’s quick first step gives him a good chance to beat his opposition across their face to make it into the backfield, but if he does engage with the offensive lineman he does not back down. Against outside runs, Howard needs to maintain the edge better to help force the runner back inside. On inside run plays, Howard does a good job of moving down the line of scrimmage and getting in the backfield.

Offers: SMU, Stephen F. Austin, Sam Houston State, New Mexico State and North Texas.
HT: 6-4
WT: 245 pounds
40-time: 4.7 seconds

Eli Howard Highlights

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