OU could have another special draft in ’12
It wasn’t exactly a historic draft for Oklahoma.
In fact, a third rounder, fourth rounder and two seventh rounders was relatively one of the weaker drafts in the Bob Stoops era.
However, when you consider what came before — and what might come after — this draft looks a lot better.
In 2010, the Sooners became the first school in 63 years to produce three of the first four picks thanks to QB Sam Bradford (No. 1, Rams), defensive tackle Gerald McCoy (No. 3, Buccaneers) and offensive tackle Trent Williams (No. 4, Redskins). Tight end Jermaine Gresham then went to the Cincinnati Bengals with the No. 21 overall pick, giving OU a school-record four first-round selections.
A historic draft, and not just for OU.
Next year’s draft probably won’t be historic. But it could turn out to be one of the better ones of the Stoops era.
Considering how high Washington’s Jake Locker (eighth overall) Missouri’s Blaine Gabbert (tenth) and Florida State’s Christian Ponder (twelfth) went over the weekend, Landry Jones certainly has the chance to join Bradford as the only Sooner QBs drafted in the first round, should he come out next year.
Barring some unforeseen development, Stanford’s Andrew Luck will be the No. 1 QB and No. 1 overall pick in the draft next year.
But after that, Jones is right there, along with other top prospects like USC’s Matt Barkley, Michigan State’s Kirk Cousins, Arizona’s Nick Foles and OSU’s Brandon Weeden.
Jones, however, isn’t the only first-round possibility.
Ryan Broyles, who figures to shatter the NCAA career receptions mark next season (he needs only 51 catches), could work his way into Day 1 of the draft.
The knock on Broyles is size. But size hasn’t prevented other diminutive wideouts like DeSean Jackson, Wes Welker and Danny Amendola from being tremendously productive at the next level.
Broyles doesn’t have the speed asset that Jackson has. That could ultimately bump Broyles into the second round. But he makes a ton of plays, and that’s something NFL teams will have to look hard at.
Travis Lewis too is a Day 1 possibility. But to go high in the draft as a linebacker anymore, you have to be a speed rushing, 3-4 outside linebacker like Von Miller (the only linebacker taken in the first round of the draft this year). That’s not Lewis’ forte.
Stills, Lewis will be one of the top 4-3 outside linebacker prospects in the draft. And like Broyles, Lewis has been ultra productive in college, leading the Sooners in tackles three straight years. With a huge year, Lewis could play his way in the first round.
One more draft-eligible Sooner to keep an eye on is “The Hammer,” Ronnell Lewis.
Yes, Lewis is still raw, still learning how to play defensive end. But he has all the tools. Size, speed, strength, and the ability to knock someone’s helmet off at any moment.
If he puts it all together this season, he could have NFL teams salivating.
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