Tag:NFL Draft
Posted on: January 5, 2012 3:53 pm
Edited on: January 5, 2012 3:54 pm
 

Oklahoma's Ronnell Lewis is going pro

Posted by Tom Fornelli

Oklahoma's defensive line will be without one of its best players in 2012. Defensive end Ronnell Lewis announced on Thursday that he would forego his senior season at Oklahoma and enter the NFL Draft.

"After meeting with my family and coaches and gathering input from various resources, including the NFL, I’ve carefully weighed my options and have decided to forego my senior year at OU and enter the 2012 NFL Draft," said Lewis in a release. "My time at OU has produced many fond memories and I hope to keep close ties with my friends, teammates, coaches, football staff and everyone at OU who has helped me along the way. I’d like to personally thank the University of Oklahoma and Coach Stoops for giving me the opportunity to be a Sooner and play on Saturdays in front of the best fans in the country. Without the support of my coaches, my family and so many others, I wouldn’t be where I am today. I’ll definitely miss my time in Norman, but I’m looking forward to what the future holds. Boomer Sooner!"

“Ronnell leaves with our best wishes," said Bob Stoops. "He managed several challenges while playing here, but always worked hard and gave us his very best effort. He has the skill to be a successful NFL player and we feel he’ll do well there. As with any of our players who reach for the top level, he won’t have any bigger fans than those of us at OU.”

Stoops may wish Lewis well in the NFL, but his departure means that Oklahoma will be without both of its starting defensive ends next season, as Frank Alexander will graduate this spring.

CBSSports.com's Rob Rang has Lewis marked as an outside linebacker in the NFL, and he's ranked sixth among all outside linebacker prospects in the 2012 draft class.

Lewis had 60 tackles for the Sooners in 2011, including 13 for loss and 5.5 sacks. 

Check out where Lewis, and all the 2012 draft prospects rank on the CBSSports.com draft board, and follow all the news on early entrants here. 

Keep up with the latest college football news from around the country. From the regular season all the way through the bowl games, CBSSports.com has you covered with this daily newsletter. View a preview. Like us? Tell our Facebook page.

Posted on: January 5, 2012 1:16 pm
Edited on: January 5, 2012 7:49 pm
 

Brock Osweiler to enter NFL Draft

Posted by Tom Fornelli

New Arizona State head coach Todd Graham has received an unexpected and unwelcome surprise. After originally indicating that he was likely to return to Arizona State for his senior season, quarterback Brock Osweiler -- who is 6'8 by the way -- will declare himself eligible for this spring's NFL Draft.

As for why Osweiler had such a change of heart, there's some speculation that it has to do with offensive coordinator Noel Mazzone leaving the program. Osweiler was visibly upset about the departure of Mazzone when discussing Mazzone's influence on him after Arizona State's loss to Boise State in the Las Vegas Bowl.

It seems that Osweiler now thinks that he's better off giving the NFL a chance rather than having to learn a new system under Todd Graham in his senior year.

Osweiler's departure is a big blow to the Sun Devils offense. He became the first quarterback in school history to throw for more than 4,000 yards in a season in 2011, finishing the year with 4,036 yards and 26 touchdowns. More importantly than his production, there's not exactly a lot of experience behind Osweiler on the Arizona State depth chart. Freshmen Mike Bercovici and Taylor Kelly are listed behind Osweiler on the Arizona State depth chart, and the duo threw a grand total of 7 passes for the Sun Devils this season.

There's no doubt that Todd Graham would have preferred to go into his first season at Arizona State with Osweiler manning the helm as both Kelly and Bercovici spent a season on the sideline learning the offense.

Check out where Osweiler, and all the 2012 draft prospects rank on the CBSSports.com draft board, and follow all the news on early entrants here. 

Keep up with the latest college football news from around the country. From the regular season all the way through the bowl games, CBSSports.com has you covered with this daily newsletter. View a preview. Like us? Tell our Facebook page.

Posted on: January 5, 2012 12:45 pm
 

Gamecocks lose Jeffery, Gilmore to NFL Draft

Posted by Jerry Hinnen

South Carolina likely didn't have any illusions about where star receiver Alshon Jeffery was going to play his football next season. But the Gamecocks were no doubt hoping that Jeffery might be the only major early departure for the NFL Draft; the decision made Wednesday by junior corner Stephon Gilmore, however, means that Jeffery will have company on the way out of Columbia.

Both players have now publicly declared for April's draft, with Jeffery relaying his decision to ESPN and Gilmore's mother confirming her son's choice to CBSSports.com RapidReporter Josh Kendall. Gilmore informed the Gamecock coaching staff Wednesday.

"I'm ready for the next step," Jeffery said. "I'm physical and can make plays in the red zone. I can make big plays in big games. I can work on my speed and get quicker. I want to be like Larry Fitzgerald, Calvin Johnson and Andre Johnson."

For Jeffery, the decision was a likely no-brainer. Though the buttoned-up nature of the Gamecocks' 2011 offense (and increased defensive attention without the presence of Marcus Lattimore) saw a sizable decline in Jeffery's numbers, his All-American sophomore season -- 88 catches, 9 touchdowns, and more yards (1,517) than any wideout not playing in a non-BCS league or the state of Oklahoma -- meant he'd already proven just about everything he could prove at the college level. His final collegiate game showed that his immense physical talent is as intact as ever, as he skied for a game-changing Hail Mary and finished with 148 yards in a Capital One Bowl MVP performance.

It wasn't enough for either of our CBSSports.com draft experts to move Jeffery into the first-round of their most recent mock drafts, but a series of good workouts could change things.

Gilmore didn't have nearly Jeffery's nationwide name-recognition, but he arguably had a much larger impact on the Gamecocks' 2011 success than his offensive counterpart; after a subpar 2010, the South Carolina secondary finished second in the nation in pass defense and third in opponent's passer rating, with Gilmore's four interceptions and cover-corner skills playing a large role in that improvement. Our Dan Brugler has Gilmore projected to go to the New England Patriots with the 28th pick of the draft. 

That kind of projection is why the Gamecocks will have some big shoes to fill in the passing game -- on both sides of the ball -- come 2012.

Check out where Jeffery, Gilmore, and all the 2012 draft prospects rank on the CBSSports.com draft board, and follow all the news on early entrants here. 

Keep up with the latest college football news from around the country. From the regular season all the way through the bowl games, CBSSports.com has you covered with this daily newsletter. View a preview. Like us? Tell our Facebook page.

Posted on: January 3, 2012 7:08 pm
 

Stanford OT Jonathan Martin declares for draft

Posted by Jerry Hinnen

Andrew Luck might be just the start of a Stanford exodus to the NFL Draft, since as of Tuesday afternoon he already has some Cardinal company.

Junior Stanford tackle Jonathan Martin announced via his Twitter account Tuesday that he will be forgoing his senior season in Palo Alto to enter this April's draft:

 

Martin could be one of two early-entrants from the Cardinal offensive line, as All-American guard David DeCastro is also expected to declare in the near future. 

"#NERDs" or not, Martin and DeCastro stand to soon become some very wealthy nerds. In a tackle-light draft, Martin shapes up as an all-but-certain first-round selection and could hear his name called in the top 10. At 6'6" and 305 pounds with loads of experience both drive-blocking and pass-protecting in Stanford's pro-style scheme, the two-time first-team All-Pac-12 honoree ranks as the third tackle off the board here at CBSSports.com and the No. 13 prospect overall. (DeCastro, incidentally, ranks ninth.)

Get caught up on the early-entry announcements HERE, and all the latest rankings, mock drafts, and breaking news check out the NFL Draft Home. 

Keep up with the latest college football news from around the country. From the regular season all the way through the bowl games, CBSSports.com has you covered with this daily newsletter. | Preview

Posted on: January 3, 2012 5:48 pm
 

USF RB Darrell Scott leaving for the NFL Draft

Posted by Chip Patterson

South Florida fans were thrilled to get Darrell Scott in Tampa this season, once a highly-touted running back now with apparent second life after transferring from Colorado. But in somewhat of a surprise move, Scott has decided to keep his time with the Bulls brief, and forego his final season of eligibility to enter the 2012 NFL Draft.

A school official confirmed to CBSSports.com of the running back's decision, and now Scott moves to the next phase of working to boost his stock in the eyes of NFL scouts. Scott rushed for 814 yards and five touchdowns for the Bulls in 2011, good for fifth in the Big East but not even cracking the Top 75 nationally. Scott often shared snaps in Skip Hotz's offense, which was up and down throughout the season as a unit.

Scott is extremely talented and shown bursts of potential.  His most impressive performance this season was a 146-yard, three touchdown outing in a rout of Florida A&M in in September.  Unfortunatey Scott's numbers dipped with the Bulls, who lost seven of their final eight contests and missed the postseason.

Get caught up on the early-entry announcements HERE, and all the latest rankings, mock drafts, and breaking news check out the NFL Draft Home 

Keep up with the latest college football news from around the country. From the regular season all the way through the bowl games, CBSSports.com has you covered with this daily newsletter. | Preview
Posted on: January 3, 2012 1:53 pm
 

Rutgers WR Sanu declares for 2012 NFL Draft

Posted by Chip Patterson

Rutgers wide receiver Mohamed Sanu will take advantage of his record-breaking performance in 2011, and forego his senior season to enter the 2012 NFL Draft. The unanimous All-Big East First Team selection made his decision official during an on-campus press conference on Tuesday.

"It was a tough decision, because I was definitely thinking about coming back," Sanu explained. "I'm going to miss the family, the cohesiveness of being around my teammates every day. I'm emotionally attached to this team, we have such a tight bond, and I love all these guys."

Sanu set Big East records for single-season receptions (115) and single-game receptions (16) this season. In just three years on the field the star wide receiver finishes his time at Rutgers' as the conference's leader in career receptions with 210 catches. Sanu joins Ray Rice, Kenny Britt, and Anthony Davis as Scarlet Knights to declare early for the NFL Draft under head coach Greg Schiano. All three previous players were first round draft picks.

CBSSports.com's Rob Rang ranks Sanu as the fourth best wide receiver in the 2012 class, and currently has the Rutgers' star going 30th in his latest NFL Mock Draft. In addition to his impressive receiving statistics, Sanu contributed 653 rushing yards and four touchdown passes in his time with the Scarlet Knights.

Get caught up on the early-entry announcements HERE, and all the latest rankings, mock drafts, and breaking news check out the NFL Draft Home 

Keep up with the latest college football news from around the country. From the regular season all the way through the bowl games, CBSSports.com has you covered with this daily newsletter. | Preview
Posted on: January 3, 2012 1:44 pm
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Posted on: January 3, 2012 12:18 pm
Edited on: January 3, 2012 1:54 pm
 

Mississippi State's Cox to enter NFL Draft

Posted by Tom Fornelli

Mississippi State will be missing one of the anchors of its defense heading into the 2012 season, as junior defensive tackle Fletcher Cox announced that he was declaring for the NFL Draft on Tuesday.

“This is a chance for me to do what I’ve always dreamed of, play in the NFL,” Cox said in a release. “I appreciate everything Mississippi State has done for me to help me get to this point. The coaches, fans, staff and everyone there have been amazing during my three years in Starkville.” 

Cox finished the season with 56 tackles for the Bulldogs, including 14 1/2 for loss and 5 sacks. He was also named first-team All-SEC by the AP. In his career Cox played 36 games for Mississippi State, starting 27. He also proved to be quite adept at blocking kicks during his time in Starkville, blocking 5 kicks, including a field goal in Mississippi State's 23-17 win over Wake Forest in the Music City Bowl.

Cox is currently ranked third amongst defensive tackles on CBSSports.com's draft board, behind Penn State's Devon Still and North Carolina's Quinton Coples. He's also projected to be a late-first round pick by both Rob Rang and Dane Brugler of CBSSports.com.

Get caught up on the early-entry announcements HERE, and all the latest rankings, mock drafts, and breaking news check out the NFL Draft Home 
 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com