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Dwayne Gratz, CB, Connecticut

 
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nicfre2011


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 03, 2013 5:28 pm    Post subject: Dwayne Gratz, CB, Connecticut Reply with quote


Dwayne Gratz
Position : CB
College : Connecticut Huskies
Class : Senior
Height : 5'11"
Weight : 201 lbs.
Arm length : 32-1/8"
Hand size : 10-1/2"
40 yard dash : 4.47
225 lb. bench press reps : 22
Broad jump : 10'-5"
Vertical jump : 38"
20 yard shuttle : 4.15
3 cone drill : 6.70

Dwayne Gratz Connecticut Huskies Official Bio

Quote:
2012 Statistics (through 12 games)
Solo tackles : 36
Assisted tackles : 17
Total tackles : 53
Tackles for loss : 3.5
Tackles for loss yardage : 7
Passes broken up : 11
Forced fumbles : 1
Interceptions : 3
Interception return yardage : 37
Interception return touchdowns : 1


Dwayne Gratz Career Statistics

Quote:

Overview

Even though Connecticutís 2011 Orange Bowl, 48-20, blowout loss to Oklahoma was not particularly fine moment for the Huskies -Ė or Big East Conference football -Ė Gratz actually matched his teamís offensive point total (six, as the other touchdown came on a kickoff return) by intercepting Sooners quarterback Landry Jones and returning the ball 46 yards to the end zone. Making that sort of play as a sophomore, and building on it over the next two years, has allowed scouts to project him as mid to late round pick.

Gratz was a first-team all-region pick in Piscataway, N.J., as well as an all-county pick in track (he set the school record in the 55-meter hurdles), but Big East rival Rutgers couldnít lock him up. In his redshirt freshman season, he played in all 13 games, coming on to start four of the last five games of the regular season (20 tackles, four pass break-ups). He started all 13 games of UConnís co-Big East championship 2010 season (63 tackles, two interceptions, nine pass break-ups) that unfortunately ended with the BCS bowl loss to the Sooners. The team didnít make it to a bowl at all in 2011, though Gratz played well enough as a 12-game starter (53 tackles, 4.5 for loss, three interceptions, four pass break-ups) to garner second-team All-Big East honors from league coaches. As a senior, Gratz registered 53 tackles, 11 pass breakups, and three interceptions, one of which he returned for a touchdown. He was named second-team All-Big East for the second consecutive year.

Analysis

Strengths
Combines NFL height and overall strength. Stays low in his stance and when opening up in bail coverage. Good closing ability, quick to attack short passes to knock them away or make the tough tackle. Aggressive hitter, can put his helmet on the ball or cut down ballcarriers equally well near the line or in space. Used as a blitzer regularly and is fast to close off cutback lanes on run plays when uncovered. Quick hands and feet to consistently beat receiver blocks. Capable of making the interception with his hands or body on poor throws, fair ball skills to grab low or high passes.

Weaknesses
Aggressiveness can be used against him, keeps his eyes in the backfield a long time, allowing his man to get deep and he lacks pure recovery speed to catch up. Struggles to track the football. Drops his head and goes down to the ground too early on some tackle attempts. Backpedal can be slow and choppy. Looks to be stiff in the hips.

NFL Comparison
Bradley Fletcher

Bottom Line
Gratz first stepped into the limelight with a 46-yard interception return for a touchdown against Oklahoma quarterback Landry Jones in the teamís 48-20 loss to the Sooners in the 2011 Orange Bowl. He followed that up with two consecutive second-team All-Big East seasons, using his NFL-quality size, strength, and agility to handle receivers on the outside. As there are some questions about his long speed and hips, a potential move to safety could be in his future. However, Gratz will still likely find himself selected in the middle to late rounds.

Dwayne Gratz NFL.com Profile







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nicfre2011


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 03, 2013 5:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Gratz is another lesser known cornerback prospect that I have tried to take a closer look at this past college season. I like his physicality for the position and he is a tough run defender to go with solid coverage skills. His testing at the NFL combine showcased solid measurables for the position while being a solid performer in several workout categories :

#1 in bench press reps with 22.
#5 in vertical jump with 38".
#12 in broad jump with 10'-5".
#3 in 3 cone drill with 6.70.
#11 in 20 yard shuttle with 4.15.

I think he projects well as a developmental press man coverage cornerback in the NFL and wouldn't be shocked if teams end up grading him out as a solid third round pick.
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OILCHIEFS


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2013 1:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Geez, That's a well built corner. Not tall but not short and 201 pounds. I love guys who show a great weight room work ethic.


Thanks Nic.
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ryknowssd


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2013 1:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have no idea who this kid is, but I DO love Big East corners. Not sure why, but it just always seems like every corner from the big east is a blue collar, hard working and big hitting, physical kid. I'll have to check him out.
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nicfre2011


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2013 9:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

OILCHIEFS wrote:
Geez, That's a well built corner. Not tall but not short and 201 pounds. I love guys who show a great weight room work ethic.


Thanks Nic.


Yeah, Gratz is a prospect that isn't getting alot of attention right at the moment but I think he put himself back on the evaluation radar. He gets the typical "might be best served to play safety at the next level" comments, but I honestly think he has what it takes to play cornerback in the NFL - especially for a team that values physicality at the position. I think he is far from a finished product and could definitely benefit from NFL-caliber coaching.
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nicfre2011


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2013 9:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

ryknowssd wrote:
I have no idea who this kid is, but I DO love Big East corners. Not sure why, but it just always seems like every corner from the big east is a blue collar, hard working and big hitting, physical kid. I'll have to check him out.


Ry,
Gratz was overshadowed during the college season by his fellow Huskie cornerback Blidi Wreh-Wilson as an NFL prospect, but I think Gratz could end up being the better overall NFL cornerback when it is all said and done.

You are right about Big East cornerbacks, they aren't necessarily the flashiest but they get the job done. I also like Rutgers cornerback Logan Ryan who is another physical cornerback. He didn't exactly light up the combine, but I think he has the skill set to get the job done at the next level and I like both Ryan and Gratz as press man coverage cornerback prospects.

I also really like Syracuse safety Shamarko Thomas - he is more of a in-the-box safety, but is a speeding bullett on every snap.
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bigschmadt00


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2013 11:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

nicfre2011 wrote:
I also really like Syracuse safety Shamarko Thomas - he is more of a in-the-box safety, but is a speeding bullett on every snap.

Been really impressed with this guy.

I'm anxious to see how we go with our safeties in the draft and UFA. Who we add could be an indication of what our intentions are with Berry. Romeo obviously tried to turn him into Rodney Harrison. I wonder if Reid will want to turn him into Dawkins?

Adding a guy like Shamarko Thomas would be a strong hint Eric is getting his wish, and will be more of a ball hawk again, and less of a LB.
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2013 11:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Oh, and my guy I want at CB is Robert Alford from Southeastern LA. He looked really good at the Shrine game and Senior Bowl, is a good size and very good speed, and plays physical press man well, and isn't afraid to step up in run support. http://www.nfl.com/draft/2013/profiles/robert-alford?id=2539653
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2013 11:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I hate this thread, because my ADHD and my impatience leaves me wanting to click into it every time I come on because I read Dwayne and get real excited...

I'm ok with this guy in later rounds, as we can almost rest assured Reid/Dorsey will draft one.
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2013 12:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

bigschmadt00 wrote:
nicfre2011 wrote:
I also really like Syracuse safety Shamarko Thomas - he is more of a in-the-box safety, but is a speeding bullett on every snap.

Been really impressed with this guy.

I'm anxious to see how we go with our safeties in the draft and UFA. Who we add could be an indication of what our intentions are with Berry. Romeo obviously tried to turn him into Rodney Harrison. I wonder if Reid will want to turn him into Dawkins?

Adding a guy like Shamarko Thomas would be a strong hint Eric is getting his wish, and will be more of a ball hawk again, and less of a LB.


I was going to make a comment about this as well. I really think Eric Berry is best suited to play a centerfielder type of safety role. He has the range and ball skills to make an impact in that area. IMO, having him play within the first 10 yards from the line of scrimmage isn't getting the best value out of his skillset.

If we put him in that type of role, we then have Kendrick Lewis to serve as a primary backup to Berry and gives us an opportunity to jump into the draft mix for a strong safety candidate in the draft that could fill a more intermediate coverage area along with being used closer to the line of scrimmage.

IMO there are quite a few quality prospects that could fit that type of role for us in the back-end of our defense. Shamarko Thomas definitely fits that mold. I would also add (in particular order of preference) Phillip Thomas, Bacarri Rambo, Shawn Williams, Eric Reid (likely gone at some point in the 1st or 2nd round), D.J. Swearinger, Earl Wolff, Tony Jefferson, T.J. McDonald, Josh Evans, Matt Elam (likely high 2nd round grade), Jonathan Cyprien, J.J. Wilcox, Robert Lester, Cooper Taylor to name a few of the more well-known prospects.

The reason I really like Phillip Thomas is because I think he would provide us with some positional versatility as he has experience playing close to the line of scrimmage and in coverage as well.
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