Closing Numbers: The NFL Draft


After a three day battle for prospects, draft war rooms across the NFL have officially closed. The final tally shows 255 selections made, a countless number of trades, and seven of eleven Trojans pulled from the board. Among the notables that didn’t hear their names called, Stafon Johnson was one, but it didn’t take long  for the running back to find work.

Player

P

RD

Pick

Team

Taylor Mays

S

2

49

San Francisco

Charles Brown

OT

2

54

New Orleans

Damian Williams

WR

3

77

Tennessee

Kevin Thomas

CB

3

94

Indianapolis

Everson Griffen

DE

4

100

Minnesota

Joe McKnight

RB

4

112

NY Jets

Anthony McCoy

TE

6

185

Seattle

Griffen’s “Day Three” wait wasn’t long at all. The Vikings made him their selection with the second pick of the morning. He was followed close behind by Joe McKnight, who will reunite with Mark Sanchez in New York.

McKnight is one Trojan that originally said he would not enter the draft. The media firestorm that followed his use of an SUV registered to a Santa Monica businessman quickly altered that decision. The shifty tailback should have success behind the best run blocking line in the NFL, though getting on the field may prove to be a chore.

The impact of Anthony McCoy’s failed drug test proved to be more severe than originally believed. The tight end fell four rounds later than his draft projection, finally resting with Pete Carroll and the Seahawks.

Pete Carroll also gave a second opportunity to more of his former players. Jeff Byers, Josh Pinkard, and Will Harris were signed to free agent contracts, after failing to be chosen at all. Undrafted Stafon Johnson, who could have requested a medical redshirt to remain in school, was signed by the Tennessee Titans.

Closing Numbers

The seven Trojans selected over the weekend were second only to Florida. The Gators, who fielded the most successful senior class in SEC history, had nine of ten draft eligible selected.

The Big 12 dominated the first round, with five players among the top-5 drafted, and a total of nine selections among the first 32 picks. That was followed closely by the SEC (7), before dropping off to ACC (4), Big East (3), Big 10 (3), Pac 10 (2), MWC (2), and WAC (2).

Conference

Eligible

Drafted

%

Big 10

46

34

73.91

Big East

25

18

72.00

SEC

69

49

71.01

ACC

44

31

70.45

Pac 10

42

29

69.05

Big 12

45

30

66.67

The SEC continued to provide the greater amount of prospects, as well as the most drafted.  But looking at the percentages, when you combine the number of players that went without selection, the Big 10 is the leader of the pack. Ohio State has been the pride of the Big 10 conference for several years, but the Buckeyes had only 4 selections in 2010, with the first exiting the board in round four.

Closing the Book

These numbers represent USC’s draft achievements under the instruction of Carroll and his staff.

• From the draft period of 2002 to 2010, 60 Trojans were selected by NFL franchises.
• 14 Trojans were selected in the first-round
• A Trojan has been drafted in the second-round or higher for eight consecutive years.
• 3 quarterbacks have been selected in the first-round, and 5 overall.
• Providing evidence of the transformation of “Tailback U”, only 5 running backs were drafted in the same period, and only 1 was selected in the first round.
• Linebackers prove to be the draft gem. 9 USC linebackers have been drafted. 5 currently hold starting positions on NFL rosters. 3 were elected to Pro Bowl games, and one was defensive rookie of the year. All nine were selected from 2005 to 2010, with none chosen during Carroll’s first three years.
• 11 Trojans were selected in the 2006 draft. The number was equaled in 2009, when another 11 leaped from the board.
• At least one of Carroll’s former players has appeared on a Super Bowl Championship roster, including each of the past three winners.

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~ by Anthony on April 25, 2010.

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