We had TWO! commitments this weekend, but I'm going to spend this breakdown mostly talking about Johnny Capra, because so little footage -- and I mean ridiculously little; 4 highlight plays worth -- footage of Zeandae Johnson playing defense exists.
There is a reason for this, though:
@AGuyNamedNam he only started playing DE late in the year, last two or three games, he told me. He'll likely move inside down the road.— Ryan Gorcey (@RGBearTerritory) June 30, 2014
My initial thoughts on the big Fresno tight end, in case you're curious: he's a big, growing body who usually happens to be the best athlete on the field. After that, though, determinations are hard to make, especially for the spot he'll end up playing at Cal. Most of his highlight reel is him doing curl routes -- quickly turning around for the ball -- or blocking. We'll see what happens with him after senior year, so you can expect a better, more in-depth writeup then. He does, however, jump right into the lead for best name. Sorry, Greyson Bankhead.
This situation reminds me a bit of Noah Westerfield, right off the bat, though -- it could be that Zeandae will be a bit of a raw, athletic project, and that we are trying to pick him up and turn him into something destructive down the line, like the Texas native. [Coach Dykes also said something to this effect at his Signing Day presser.]
As for Capra, who becomes the 2nd offensive lineman of the 2015 class...let's crack his tape open, and see how or what he's bringing. Blahblahblah I am not a professional talent evaluator and just some guy with a lot of time on his hands blahblahblah.
Because he's slightly bigger and taller than Gibson, the expectation, I think will be that Capra comes to Cal to play tackle. He's already 6'6, in the 280 pound range, and you want those guys out on the edge to be on the taller side, with good wingspan/reach to fend off rushers.
Getting into more of the highlight reel, you have to love that "HIGHLY MOTIVATED STUDENT ATHLETE" -- and a 3.75 GPA -- shows up before anything else. And then the first play starts, and you have to love him even more. He doesn't accelerate particularly quickly in this clip, but when he reaches top gear, watch him just effortlessly blow up that second guy.
One of the really noticeable things over these four minutes is how often Placer asks him to get up to the second level -- you'll see a lot of plays where he's uncovered, so he'll just dash right on up to get a linebacker, and judging from this, Capra looks like he's got a solid, but not exceptional agility. He's quick enough with his first step to seal guys off laterally, and I feel like he could certainly stand to get a lot stronger -- he's not as physically dominant as you might like just yet, although there'll be time for that. It's rare to find physically mature, college ready linemen coming out of high school anyway.
I watched this more to try to learn some things about his pass protection, since that's what we'll expect him to be doing. From what's available, you see that he's not a leaner -- at least, on tape -- he doesn't get caught bending over his waist, which is good. This means that he stays pretty low and keeps his knee bent, two things that are crucial to keeping balance out on the edge. This is something I felt Ryan Gibson didn't do a great job with on tape, but he's playing center, not tackle, so it's not as crucial.
Another plus is Capra's use of hands -- check out how the end engages and gets into his body, only for Capra to force him back and keep him at, well, arm's length, the entire way. Here it is again. And again. Two promising skills here for a future tackle, provided that he physically matures.
Acknowledging my limited knowledge as an evaluator of the offensive line, my opinion is that while there's not too much to complain about Capra as a prospect, Gibson's tape looks better -- something that is supported by their respective rankings.