According to The Huddle Report, Brendan Donahue is ranked as the most accurate NFL mock drafter over the past five years and in this column he brings his extensive college football predictive insight to you weekly.

As someone who does mock drafts every year, I always have my eye on draft-eligible players and how their performance on the field could positively or negatively impact their draft stock in the upcoming draft. So we will be tracking players on a weekly basis throughout the season to see who is rising or falling on draft boards.

What college players are rising on the draft board for 2022?

Bailey Zappe, QB, Western Kentucky

While not in the national conversation with some of the bigger names at quarterback at bigger programs, it’s hard to ignore what Zappe has done at Western Kentucky this year. With already 3,000 passing yards on the season, he is first in yards per game and tied for first in touchdowns in the country, while completing 71.1% of his passes. Zappe is also third in the country in EPA with a 58.9 per ESPN which is only behind potential first-round picks Malik Willis and Kenny Pickett. Scouts love his accuracy, pocket presence, and decision-making, however his lack of size at just 6’1” is keeping him from entering the day one discussion but if he continues to put this type of play on film, it will be hard to ignore him in April. 

Leo Chanel, LB, Wisconsin 

Speaking of hard to ignore, it’s impossible to miss Leo Chanel if you have watched any Wisconsin game recently. It is not hyperbole to say he has literally been all over the field. In just the past two weeks alone he has racked up 26 total tackles and 4.5 sacks including a 3.5 sack performance against Purdue last week. He is now the highest-graded linebacker in the country per PFF with a 91.8, moving ahead of Georgia’s Nakobe Dean. At 6’2”, 261 lbs. Chanel certainly has the size to be a downhill linebacker at the next level but it will come down to if scouts think he can be a three-down linebacker that will determine how high he gets drafted. 

Jaquarii Roberson, WR, Wake Forest

Granted he was playing Army but Roberson still made a few highlight film catches to go along with his overall stat line of eight catches for 157 yards and three touchdowns that will certainly grab scouts’ attention. But it’s more than just this past game, Roberson now has over 100 yards receiving in each of his last three games and is averaging 96.0 per game on the season. He has displayed a consistent ability to make contested catches using a combination of his size, body control, and great hands. Once a borderline draftable player, Roberson has played himself clearly into the draft and with a good to great speed time at the combine could find himself as a day two prospect.

What college players are falling on the draft board for 2022?

D.J. Uiagalelei, QB, Clemson

This is the first time I am including a player who is not yet eligible for the draft, but I don’t think anyone could have predicted what has happened to him this season, specifically this past weekend. After his performance against Notre Dame last year in just his second game as a true freshman, people were ready to pencil him in as the number one pick in the 2023 draft. Even after losing Trevor Lawrence to the draft, Clemson was still ranked No. 3 in the AP preseason poll as many expected a seamless transition to the next great Clemson quarterback in Uiagalelei. That couldn’t be further from the case both for Clemson and Uiagelelei, culminating with a 27-17 loss to Pittsburgh on Saturday where Uiagelelei was benched.

Not only is Clemson 4-3 on the season and not ranked in the top 25, Clemson ranks 111th in the country in passing yards per game at just 176.1 which is last in the ACC. Uiagalelei is 105th in QBR and 122nd out of 127 eligible quarterbacks in EPA per ESPN, which again is last in the ACC. Just numbers that didn’t seem conceivable coming into the season for a potential future number one pick. There is debate as to how much of this can be attributed to the coaching and how much of it is on Uiagalelei himself so it will be a fascinating story to see how this plays out in the offseason and if he will stick it out with Clemson for his junior year or enter the transfer portal.