NFL Draft Blog: More Visits, Team Interests

April 5th ... More news of team interests and visits are being uncovered across the NFL network. Get the details inside from Ed Thompson...

During a phone interview on Thursday, Alabama LB Juwan Simpson said he hasn't had any private workouts or visits yet, but he has just gotten back to one hundred percent in the last few days after pulling up with a hamstring problem at his Pro Day. He said he and his agent will be notifying teams this week that he's now able to workout for them. To date, Simpson says he's received the strongest interest from Seattle, who he connected with during a formal interview at the Combine.

The Detroit Lions are showing the most interest so far in San Jose State's James Jones. The 6-foot-1, 207-pound receiver reportedly ran his forty in the 4.50 to 4.58 range and showed off his excellent catching skills during drills at his Pro Day.

According to one of my sources close to Jones, he then went to Stanford's Pro Day to meet Detroit offensive coordinator Mike Martz, who was in attendance to watch Stanford QB Trent Edwards. Jones spent about half an hour talking with Martz, and indications are good that he'll be receiving an invitation for a pre-draft visit this month.

Hampton LB Justin Durant (Mark Sutton/Mark's Digital Photography)
Last week I reported that Hampton LB Justin Durant had visits scheduled with the Rams and the Buccaneers and that he had completed private workouts with the Falcons, Bears, Panthers, and Bengals.

Since then, I've also learned that he'll be adding the Titans to his list of pre-draft visits and will be working out for the Broncos and the Saints.

Durant, the first player to win the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (Div I-AA) Defensive Player of the Year Award three times, registered 47 tackles for a loss, 10 sacks, 4 interceptions, recovered 3 fumbles and forced one, and broke up 16 pass attempts during his collegiate career.

At the Combine, he was in high demand for formal interviews, meeting with the Panthers, Bengals, Ravens, Lions, Colts, Broncos, Raiders, Bears, Vikings, Saints, Seahawks, Rams, Falcons, Chiefs and Titans.

The Jaguars are showing interest in offensive lineman Enoka Lucas. An NFL source has stated that Jacksonville assistant head coach Mike Tice put the University of Oregon offensive lineman through a workout at his Pro Day. Lucas, a three-year starter at center, also has experience at right guard.

At our Ravens site, Aaron Wilson is reporting that University of Oklahoma linebacker Rufus Alexander met with the Baltimore Ravens' staff at the Combine. Agent Doug Hendrickson of Octagon Sports told Wilson that Alexander doesn't have a visit currently set up with Baltimore, but does have an upcoming top 30 official visit set with the Indianapolis Colts. "With Alexander's blend of speed and agility, the undersized Sooners linebacker would seem to be a natural fit for Colts coach Tony Dungy's Cover 2 defensive alignment," Wilson says.

Hendrickson also told Wilson that University of Michigan cornerback Leon Hall, a consensus top 15 first-round draft prospect, has scheduled visits with the Cincinnati Bengals, Detroit Lions, Pittsburgh Steelers and Washington Redskins.

Wilson is also reporting that Baltimore worked out Syracuse cornerback Tanard Jackson this week at their training complex. "I think the Ravens like him a lot," Jackson's agent, Ken Sarnoff, told Wilson in an e-mail.

"At 6-foot, 192 pounds, Jackson is capable of playing cornerback or safety," Wilson says. "He even played linebacker in some nickel packages last season."

The Ravens attended Jackson's Pro Day at Syracuse. Other teams in attendance included the Cleveland Browns, Carolina Panthers, Chicago Bears, Indianapolis Colts, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Philadelphia Eagles, Houston Texans, San Francisco 49ers, Atlanta Falcons, New York Jets, Miami Dolphins and Green Bay Packers, according to Wilson.

Roy Philpott is reporting at our Dallas site that the Cowboys will be meeting with Clemson LB Anthony Waters in the coming days. He'll also be meeting with the Chargers, Rams and Jets before the draft.

"Waters, who was once viewed as a lock for the first day before tearing his ACL in the first game of his senior season, is quickly rising back up draft boards after running 4.62 in the 40-yard dash Tuesday during a workout for 18 scouts at Clemson," he said.

Michael Lombardo is reporting in this feature at our Chargers site that projected first-round pick Paul Posluszny will be visiting San Diego.

"It is debatable whether the team's need at inside linebacker merits first-round attention," Lombardo says. "Stephen Cooper and Matt Wilhelm each signed five-year extensions in 2006 and have been groomed over the last four seasons to inherit the starting roles they are currently penciled into. Additionally, the team drafted Tim Dobbins in the fifth round of last year's draft and he seems primed for an expanded role as well."

In case you missed it,'s Adam Caplan and Tony Pauline filed this report on Wednesday that includes visits information on some "under the radar" prospects that are gaining more interest as we get closer to draft day. Check it out!

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