NFL Draft: 5 Mid-Round Prospects Who Will Be Stars
5 Mid-Round Talents That Will Be Stars In NFL
Although much of the focus for NFL teams will be hitting on their first and second-round draft picks, the way to build a successful franchise is to make smart decisions in the later rounds as well. Many of the players who dominate from Day 1 are high draft selections, but quite a few superstars, such as Richard Sherman, were afterthoughts on draft day.
This is why it’s important to not only know about the high-profile stars, but also some of the less talked about prospects. This is how the Seattle Seahawks were able to build their franchise over the years and win a Super Bowl this past season, through hitting on talent later in the draft.
We all know Russell Wilson was a third-round pick that panned out, but players like Sherman, Kam Chancellor and Byron Maxwell also came into the league as mid-round picks before breaking out.
The following five players are all currently seen as mid-to-late round talents, but I see the majority of them turning into stars upon entering the league. This may be from one unique skill that they can build upon, or simply because they are athletic enough to succeed and simply need proper coaching to take the next step.
Troy Niklas, TE, Notre Dame
Although the NFL is beginning to use tight ends as both receivers and blockers, Troy Niklas currently excels at just the latter. Niklas is widely considered the best blocking tight end in the draft, and with his 6-foot-6, 270-pound frame he also posses the athletic potential to be a dynamic receiver. His draft stock has been on the rise as of late, but it’s unlikely he makes his way into the first-round and will likely be taken in the second or third.
Martavis Bryant, WR, Clemson
When thinking of Clemson wide receivers it’s understandable that Sammy Watkins is the only player that comes to mind, but now you’ll know a second as Martavis Bryant was the second fiddle that reeled in 42 receptions for 825 yards. Bryant’s upside lies within his 6-foot-4 frame that allows him to have a huge catch radius and win 50/50 balls as well. Bryant was never given the chance to shine at Clemson because of the receiver talent in front of him, but it’s undeniable that his athleticism will give him a chance to shine once entering the NFL.
Craig Loston, SS, LSU
LSU continues to turn into DB University because of all the star talent from their secondary that has succeeded in the NFL, and Craig Loston will simply become the next player to join that list. Loston is built like a mini linebacker and will be known as a hard hitting strong safety once entering the league. In terms of technique and hitting power Loston is one of the better tacklers in the draft and will be a real difference maker in the run game from Day 1.
Keith Wenning, QB, Ball State
Unless something drastic happens between now and the draft, senior quarterback Keith Wenning won’t hear his name called until the last few rounds. Wenning has four years of college experience under his belt and has thrown for more than 11,000 yards and 92 touchdowns during his career. Despite those stats Wenning hasn’t garnered much attention, but with ideal physical characteristics and elite accuracy he’s a quarterback I’m very high on and expect to be a starter sometime down the road.
Lache Seastrunk, RB, Baylor
NFL teams are starting to realize taking running backs in the first-round isn’t the best decision. Running back talent is usually something you can find in the mid-to-late rounds of the draft, and because of that Lache Seastrunk won’t hear his named called until the third-round or later. Seastrunk has a very unique running style that allows him to stay at full speed while making defenders miss, which is a big reason I see him succeeding at the next level. Seastrunk won’t be the first running back taken, but he has the skills to be a difference maker from Day 1 for any NFL franchise.