NFL Prospect Matchups: Michigan vs. Notre Dame

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Tony Pauline

Draft Analyst Writer

A traditional matchup which takes place a little earlier than usual as Michigan visits Notre Dame. This contest can set the tone for the Irish, but it’s the Maize and Blue with the top-rated talent.

Rashan Gary is easily the top prospect in this game, and I question whether Notre Dame, which lost the entire left side of their offensive line in last April’s first round, can stop him.

After that, there are a few underrated matchups to watch.

Alize’ Mack enters the season graded by NFL scouts as the top senior tight end in the nation. He’s an athletic pass catcher with nice size and speed. Mack has the ability to stretch the seam and create mismatches in the secondary and catches the ball well.

What he lacks is consistency, as injuries have stunted his development.

Trying to keep Mack in check will be Khaleke Hudson, who mans the Viper position in the Wolverines defense. Hudson is a hybrid safety/linebacker who Michigan coaches consider the best pro prospect on the team after Rashan Gary.

As I stated back in July, Hudson has traits of Jabrill Peppers in his game.

Not listed below is Michigan tight end Zach Gentry, who has impressed scouts during August practice. Gentry caught just 20 passes the past two years, including 13 last season, but he’s big and athletic and a breakout season is expected from him.

Notre Dame linebacker Te’Von Coney will have his work cut out trying to cover Gentry.

Coney is a terrific linebacker but comes up shy in the height and weight departments. I like Coney’s next-level potential and feel he’ll be underdrafted next April as of right now.

Shea Patterson makes his long-awaited debut for Michigan, and the athletic quarterback could have the Notre Dame defense scrambling.

This could be a statement game for Irish cornerback Julian Love, a prospect I grade in the top five at his position.

Love has terrific ball skills and a good feel in coverage. He’s quick in reverse and smooth transitioning with opponents and gets his head around to make plays on the ball.

As I reported during my weekly segment on the Journey to the Draft podcast with Fran Duffy, the expectations are that Love enters the draft after this season.

NFL Prospects: Auburn-Washington

Grade

Rnd

Full Name

School

Pos

Year

#

4.12

1st

Rashan Gary

Michigan

DE

3Jr

3

4.00

1st

Shea Patterson

Michigan

QB

3Jr

2

3.83

2nd

Julian Love

Notre Dame

CB

3Jr

27

3.74

3rd

Jerry Tillery

Notre Dame

DT

4Sr

99

3.73

3rd

Alize' Mack

Notre Dame

TE

4Sr

86

3.65

3rd

Khaleke Hudson

Michigan

S

3Jr

7

3.63

3rd

Drue Tranquill

Notre Dame

OLB

5Sr

23

3.41

5th

Josh Metellus

Michigan

S

3Jr

14

3.40

5th

Daelin Hayes

Notre Dame

DE

3Jr

9

3.35

6th

Chase Winovich

Michigan

DE

5Sr

15

3.34

6th

Chris Evans

Michigan

RB

3Jr

12

3.28

7th

Te'Von Coney

Notre Dame

OLB

4Sr

4

3.27

7th

Alex Bars

Notre Dame

G

5Sr

71

3.25

FA

Ben Bredeson

Michigan

G

3Jr

74

3.15

FA

Nic Weishar

Notre Dame

TE

5Sr

84

3.15

FA

David Long

Michigan

CB

3Jr

22

3.12

FA

Karan Higdon

Michigan

RB

4Sr

22

3.11

FA

Nick Coleman

Notre Dame

S

3Jr

24

3.05

FA

Samuel Mustipher

Notre Dame

C

5Sr

53

3.05

FA

Jalen Elliott

Notre Dame

S

3Jr

21

3.02

FA

Tyree Kinnel

Michigan

S

4Sr

23

3.00

FA

Grant Newsome

Michigan

T

3Jr

77

3.00

FA

Chase Claypool

Notre Dame

WR

3Jr

83

2.99

FA

Nicholas Watkins

Notre Dame

CB

5Sr

7

2.80

FA

Bryan Mone

Michigan

DT

5Sr

90

2.79

FA

Juwann Bushell-Beatty

Michigan

T

5Sr

76

2.71

FA

Noah Furbush

Michigan

ILB

5Sr

59

2.60R

FA

Torii Hunter

Notre Dame

WR

4Sr

16