The depth of this year's draft is excellent at several positions. Usually there are one or two weak positions, but that is not the case in 2010. The strongest positions are defensive tackle, running back and cornerback.
The quality of this draft class is such that there is really very little difference in guys ranked from 20 to 48 on any given list of the top prospects. That could lead to more teams drafting for a specific need as opposed to the best available player, and it could also lead to more trades during draft weekend.
That's also a reason why it's not as important to rank these players specifically 1 through 100 -- but rather, in tiered groupings of 10.
With that in mind, here is my list of the "Hot 100" draft prospects, listed alphabetically within their tiers:
Tier 1 (1-10 listed alphabetically)
Eric Berry, S, Tennessee
5-11 5/8, 211
Smart, with excellent ball skills. Former cornerback with outstanding athleticism. High-character person.
Sam Bradford, QB, Oklahoma
6-4 ¼, 236
A natural leader, athletic and very accurate. Threw 50 touchdown passes in 2008.
Bryan Bulaga, OT, Iowa
6-5 3/8, 314
An outstanding run blocker in the zone blocking system. He is mean and aggressive, and has been very well coached.
Bruce Campbell, OT, Maryland
6-5 3/8, 314
Has outstanding size, speed and athletic ability, though he did not play well at Maryland. He is a high risk/reward type of player.
Jimmy Clausen, QB, Notre Dame
6-2 5/8, 222
A very accurate passer. He threw only four interceptions in 2009 -- and one of those was a fluke that bounced off a player's back. He can work under center or in the shotgun. Well coached by Charlie Weis.
Rolando McClain, LB, Alabama
6-3 3/8, 254
Very smart, and well coached. A very competitive player, who can play all three downs. Good blitzer.
Gerald McCoy, DT, Oklahoma
6-4 1/8, 295
Outstanding athlete who is very quick. He is comparable to Tommie Harris of the Bears. Plays with very good technique.
Russell Okung, OT, Oklahoma State
6-5 ¼, 307
His 38-inch arms and great footwork make him an outstanding pass protector. Four-year starter in a good program. Was great in college against top pass rushers.
Ndamukong Suh, DT, Nebraska
6-3 7/8, 307
Very strong and very athletic, he has outstanding quickness and a motor that never stops. He can play end if needed.
Trent Williams, OT, Oklahoma
6-4 5/8, 315
Has outstanding fundamentals for the system. Well coached, he can play right or left tackle. Has a very good punch.
Tier Two (11-20 listed alphabetically)
Anthony Davis, OT, Rutgers
6-foot-5, 323 pounds
Huge man with ability, and he moves well. He needs to get stronger, and also needs to show more passion for the game.
Brandon Graham, DE, Michigan
6-1 3/8, 268
Played defensive end at Michigan, but his best position may be linebacker in the 3-4. He's very athletic, and plays a lot like Steelers LB LaMarr Woodley when he was a Wolverine.
Jermaine Gresham, TE, Oklahoma
6-5 ¼, 261
Missed the 2009 season with torn knee ligaments. He will be a matchup nightmare because of size and speed. Has good hands. Will remind you of Kellen Winslow Sr.
Joe Haden, CB, Florida
5-10 ¾, 193
Did not run well at the combine due to a sore back, but ran a 4.4 at Florida's pro day. Started as a true freshman, has good coverage ability and will remind people of Bengals CB Leon Hall.
Derrick Morgan, DE, Georgia Tech
A 4-3 defensive end with speed and power. An outstanding competitor with a great first step. The ACC defensive player of the year.
Jason Pierre-Paul, DE, South Florida
6-4 5/8, 270
Very limited football background. He was a high school basketball player with only eight games at the Div. I level. Has outstanding speed and athletic ability.
C.J. Spiller, RB, Clemson
5-10 5/8, 196
Has very good speed (4.37 at the combine). A tough runner who had 1,715 yards from scrimmage in 2009, and scored an average of one TD per game.
Earl Thomas, S, Texas
5-10 ¼, 208
Only played two seasons at Texas. Had eight interceptions in 2009, and 10 passes defensed. Graded as a safety but can play cornerback, too. Ran 4.37 at Texas' pro day.
Demaryius Thomas, WR, Georgia Tech
6-3 ¼, 224
A project with unbelievable abilty. Broke his foot in February and most likely won't work out prior to draft. But he averaged 25 yards per catch on an option running team.
Dan Williams, DT, Tennessee
Can play nose tackle in the 3-4 or defensive tackle in the 4-3. Very good vs. the run. Needs to control his weight.
Tier Three (21-30 listed alphabetically)
Dez Bryant, WR, Oklahoma State
6-foot-2, 225 pounds
Missed most of the 2009 season and didn't work out at the combine. A big receiver with good hands, and he also has return ability. Has top-10 talent.
Carlos Dunlap, DE, Florida
6-5 ¾, 277
Very athletic to go with good quickness. Plays well vs. the run, nbut eeds to mature and learn better pass rush moves.
Mike Iupati, G, Idaho
6-5 1/8, 331
Will become the first Idaho player to be drafted in Round 1 since 1967. Played guard in college, but some think he'll play tackle in the NFL. Dominated in college despite a limited football background.
Sergio Kindle, DE/OLB, Texas
6-2 7/8, 250
Outstanding athlete who was named high school player of the year for both offense (as a running back) and defense, something that had never been done in modern history. He can rush the passer or drop into space. Was outstanding vs. Alabama in the BCS title game.
Ryan Mathews, RB, Fresno State
5-11 5/8, 218
Strong runner, ran for 1,808 yards in 2009 against 8- and 9-man fronts. Good blocker and receiver.
Jared Odrick, DT, Penn State
Defensive tackle who can also play end. He has a big frame, and has the quickness to get upfield.
Maurkice Pouncey, C, Florida
6-4 ½, 304
Has speed and toughness. Played in the Sugar Bowl just hours after treatment for kidney stones. Very smart. Has lots of experience as a shotgun center. Maybe the best center prospect in 10 years.
Rodger Saffold, LT, Indiana
6-4 5/8, 315
Has started four years at left tackle for Indiana, a good pass protector and a big effort player on a mediocre team. Needs to add strength.
Tim Tebow, QB, Florida
6-2 5/8, 236
A leader and a winner. Will need time to develop but will find a way to be a very good NFL quarterback. People said Roger Staubach was not a good enough passer to play in the NFL, and he proved those people wrong.
Kyle Wilson, CB, Boise State
Has ball skills needed to play the position. Strong, and can return kicks. Needs to work on his tackling.
Tier Four (31-40 listed alphabetically)
Jahvid Best, RB, California
5-10 1/8, 199
Has 4.27 speed with good hands and running ability. He's a Reggie Bush lookalike, a very exciting player. Will cause matchup problems.
Charles Brown, OT, USC
6-5 3/8, 303
Has very good athletic ability. Former tight end who has been coached well by Pat Ruel. Needs to add strength. Plays like Duane Brown of the Texans.
Everson Griffen, DE, USC
6-3 5/8, 303
Outstanding pass rusher. Great first-step quickness. Needs to be better versus the run. Has unlimited potential.
Jerry Hughes, DE, TCU
6-1 ¾, 255
Former high school RB who has become an outstanding pass rusher. Great first step, can also cover in space. A lot like Brian Orakpo, last year's first-round pick of the Redskins.
Kareem Jackson, CB, Alabama
5-10 ½, 196
Another cornerback coached by Nick Saban. Plays the run well and can play bump-and-run or off the receiver. Looks like former Cowboys great Everson Walls, who led the NFL in interceptions each of his first two seasons.
Linval Joseph, DT, East Carolina
6-4 ½, 328
Has really come on as the draft approaches. Has strength, size, speed and power. His best days are ahead.
Colt McCoy, QB, Texas
6-1 1/8, 216
The winningest quarterback in college history. Moves well and has a high release point. He is very accurate and can throw on the move. Had a great pro day.
Brian Price, DT, UCLA
6-1 1/8, 303
Not as tall as you would like, but he makes up for it with quickness and explosiveness. Good athletic ability. Was the Pac-10 player of the year in 2009. Competes hard every play.
Golden Tate, WR, Notre Dame
5-10 ¼, 199
Former running back is still learning the position. Lined up all over the place for Notre Dame. Has return ability and catlike quickness.
Sean Weatherspoon, LB, Missouri
6-1 ¼, 239
Best suited as an outside linebacker in the 4-3. Makes plays all over the field. A great leader and hard worker. Very good blitzer.
Tier Five (41-50 listed alphabetically)
Navorro Bowman, LB, Penn State
6-0 ½, 242
Smart player who has very good instincts. Can play in space.
Terrence Cody, DT, Alabama
6-3 5/8, 354
Wide-bodied player, most likely a two-down player. Has worked hard to lose weight -- going from 370 at the end of the '09 season to 346. Will be a very good run stopper.
Vlad Ducasse, OT, Massachusetts
6-4 5/8, 332
Moved from Haiti at age 14. Did just average at the Senior Bowl and needs to work on his technique, but he has lots of upside and is a hard worker.
Lamarr Houston, DL, Texas
6-2 ¾, 305
Has showed great improvement. He's a former running back with good quickness and strength. Made a lot of money for himself by staying in school an extra year.
Sean Lee, OLB, Penn State
6-2 1/8, 236
Very smart and competitive. Makes a lot of tackles, can play in space. Missed the 2008 season with a knee injury. Plays a lot like former Nittany Lion Paul Posluszny of the Bills.
Taylor Mays, S, USC
6-3 1/8, 230
Four-year starter at USC with great speed and athletic ability. Might be a better linebacker than safety at the pro level. His father, Stafford, played nine years in the NFL.
Devin McCourty, CB, Rutgers
5-10 ¾, 193
Plays the ball well, and is a good player versus the run. Zone corner type. Will be a great special teams player.
Koa Misi, DE, Utah
6-2 5/8, 251
College defensive end that will be a very good 3-4 linebacker. Has top talent, just lacks linebacker experience.
Patrick Robinson, CB, Florida State
5-11 ¼, 190
Very good athlete with speed and quickness. Has the talent to cover top receivers in NFL.
Daryl Washington, LB, TCU
6-1 ¾, 230
Can play inside or outside. Has speed and is aggressive. Will bulk up to 250 pounds. Lacks good hands.
Tier Six (51-60 listed alphabetically)
Tyson Alualu, DE, Cal; Arrelious Benn, WR, Illinois; Thaddeus Gibson, DE/OLB, Ohio State; Rob Gronkowski, TE, Arizona; Brandon LaFell, WR, LSU; Jerome Murphy, CB, South Florida; Brandon Spikes, LB, Florida; Torell Troup, DL, Central Florida; Al Woods, DL, LSU; Jason Worilds, DL/LB, Virginia Tech.
Tier Seven (61-70)
Morgan Burnett, S, Georgia Tech; Eric Decker, WR, Minnesota; Dominique Franks, CB, Oklahoma; Mardy Gilyard, WR, Cincinnati; Montario Hardesty, RB, Tennessee; Anthony McCoy, TE, USC; Eric Norwood, ILB, South Carolina; Tony Pike, QB, Cincinnati; Ricky Sapp, LB/DE, Clemson; Cam Thomas, DL, North Carolina.
Tier Eight (71-80)
Nate Allen, S, South Florida; Jon Asamoah, G, Illinois; Alex Carrington, DE, Arkansas State; Jonathan Dwyer, RB, Georgia Tech; Brandon Ghee, CB, Wake Forest; Jimmy Graham, TE, Miami-Fla.; John Jerry, G, Mississippi; Ben Tate, WR, Auburn; Damian Williams, WR, USC; Corey Wooton, DE, Northwestern.
Tier Nine (81-90)
Selvish Capers, OT, West Virginia; Chris Cook, CB, Virginia; Perrish Cox, CB, Oklahoma State; Ed Dickson, TE, Oregon; Anthony Dixon, RB, Mississippi State; Toby Gerhart, RB, Stanford; Austen Lane, DE, Murray State; Dexter McCluster, RB, Mississippi; Jordan Shipley, WR, Texas; Jared Veldheer, OT, Hillsdale College..
Tier Ten (91-100)
Javier Arenas, CB, Alabama; Kam Chancellor, S, Virginia Tech; Jacoby Ford, WR, Clemson; Chad Jones, S, LSU; Joe McKnight, RB, USC; Roddrick Muckelroy, ILB, Texas; Akwasi Owusu-Ansah, CB, Indiana-Pennsylvania; D'Anthony Smith, DL, Louisiana Tech; Syd'quan Thompson, CB, California; Walter Thurmond, CB, Oregon.