Posted on: January 20, 2012 11:44 am

Pasquarelli: Teams checking Kirkpatrick's past

At least two franchises with picks in the middle portion of the first round contacted Alabama head coach Nick Saban this week to get background checks on cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick, arrested in Florida and charged with marijuana possession.

There had been debate on the topic of whether Kirkpatrick or LSU standout Morris Claiborne would be the No. 1 spot at the position. Kirkpatrick has been regarded as a certain first-round pick.

It figures to be pretty interesting now to see if Kirkpatrick's stock suffers because of the arrest.

One of the ancillary things Kirkpatrick had going for him was that he played for Saban, and had the Alabama coach's seal of approval. Saban figures to get more inquiries about Kirkpatrick and his character before the draft.

--Len Pasquarelli

Category: NFL Draft
Posted on: January 18, 2012 10:12 am

Alabama CB Kirkpatrick arrested for marijuana

Before the NFL has even officially announced that he (or any other underclassmen) has been granted early eligibility into the 2012 draft, Alabama cornerback 'Dre Kirkpatrick has given scouts reason to question his maturity. 

Kirkpatrick, NFLDraftScout.com's No. 2 rated cornerback and 10th rated player overall for the 2012 draft, and former Alabama player Chris Rodgers were arrested early in the morning hours yesterday in Palmetto, Florida after driving down the wrong side of a road. Rodgers was driving but police believed that both players were under the influence of marijuana and when they searched the car they found 7.9 grams of the drug. Rodgers told police that the marijuana was his. Kirkpatrick was charged with a misdemeanor for possession and had to pay a $120 fine before being released.
It is rare that a cornerback with zero interceptions gains All-American accolades but that is precisely what Kirkpatrick accomplished in 2011 for the Crimson Tide. Though he didn't register a pass theft, Kirkpatrick's physical coverage and run support made him one of the most feared cornerbacks in the country and a virtual lock for the first round.

The arrest -- to date Kirkpatrick's only known legal entanglement -- isn't likely to push his draft stock down much. It does, however, pose a signficant red flag for teams.      

Kirkpatrick was projected to be the seventh overall pick (Jacksonville Jaguars) of my current 1st round mock draft. If you'll pardon the pun, my fellow NFLDraftScout.com analyst Dane Brugler has the Alabama cornerback going even higher.

Posted on: December 9, 2010 1:08 pm

Guilty or not Johnson-Koulianos' NFL shot dead?

A week ago Iowa wide receiver Derrell Johnson-Koulianos was viewed as a legitimate middle round prospect by NFL scouts.

That may have ended yesterday, however, as he appeared in court for the first time to hear the potential 7 1/2 years of jail time he faces after being arrested on multiple drug charges Tuesday.

It is important to note that Johnson-Koulianos is not being charged with selling drugs as has been reported elsewhere. He is, however, being charged with keeping a drug house as well as possession of marijuana, cocaine and a variety of legal pain medication and muscle-relaxers for which he did not have a prescription. Johnson-Koulianos reportedly was tested for marijuana and cocaine and came up positive for both.

In the court of law, Johnson-Koulianos is, of course, innocent until proven guilty. In the eyes of most NFL teams, however, the charges alone against him could eliminate any chance he'll play for their team. Obviously if he were to be found guilty and had to serve any jail time, his chances would drop even further.

Despite the fact that players are drafted every year after testing positive at the Combine for failed drug tests, teams are highly sensitive to players with drug charges. Actual charges tend to generate more public outcry, after all, especially for narcotics like cocaine. 

DJK as he is affectionally called by fans and those close to the Iowa program enjoyed a stellar career for the Hawkeyes. A First Team All Big-Ten selection this season with 46 receptions for 745 yards and 10 touchdowns, he leaves Iowa as their career record-holder in catches (173) and yardage (2,616). Johnson-Koulianos is also a standout kick returner with two touchdown returns over his career, including one against Minnesota in what appears to have been his final collegiate game - and perhaps the final organized football game of his career.
Posted on: April 19, 2010 1:47 pm

Failed drug test could knock McCoy out of draft

According to multiple reports, including this one by Fox's Jay Glazer and Alex Marvez, USC tight end Anthony McCoy and Georgia Tech running back Jonathan Dwyer each failed drug tests administered at the Combine.

Dwyer was found to have amphetamines in his system, something that may not have a negative impact on his draft stock due to the fact that many teams knew about his prescription for a pre-existing condition. Furthermore, he has not had any previous off-field problems at Georgia Tech.

The news is much darker, however, for McCoy, who tested positive for marijuana.

McCoy is considered one of the better all-around tight ends in the 2010 class. While he lacks the speed associated with today's hybrid receiving specialists, he's proven to be an effective short to intermediate yardage target and is perhaps this year's best blocker at the position.

McCoy, however, has struggled with discipline throughout his career at USC. He was suspended due to academic violations on multiple occasions, including twice his senior year. McCoy was suspended from the team before the season began and then again for the Emerald Bowl, what would have been his final game in a USC uniform.

On their own, McCoy's academic struggles wouldn't be enough to do more than raise a red flag for most teams. The failed drug test, however, when put in the context of his other issues, will certainly be enough to take him off many teams' boards... enough in fact that some scouts feel he could slip out of the draft entirely. 
Posted on: March 22, 2010 2:02 pm

Miami CB Shields arrested

Miami cornerback Sam Shields, a potential late round pick in next month's draft, significantly hurt his chances of being so after getting arrested last Thursday night and charged with a misdemeanor of possession of marijuana.

Shields, 5-11, 183 pounds, was once a highly touted wide receiver prospect. He actually played receiver throughout much of his career, starting a combined 12 games over the 2006-07 seasons. He only caught 11 passes for 124 yards in 2008, however, seeing most of his playing time on special teams. He was voted Miami's Special Teams Player of the Year in 2008.

Shields made the move to cornerback as a senior, playing in 12 games and ranking among the secondary's most productive players with 43 tackles and 2 passes broken up.

With decent size and reported 4.4 speed, Shields flashed the talent to pique scouts' interest, though he only had one year at cornerback. He helped himself with a solid showing at the Texas vs. Nation game and though he was not invited to the Combine, was viewed as a player who could hear his name called late on the draft's third day.

Shields' arrest, however, likely ends his chances at getting drafted. Based on the penalty handed down at his arraignment April 6, teams may now not even be willing to invite him to camp as an undrafted free agent.
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