It's almost every young football player's dream to hear their name called at Radio City Music Hall and walk across the stage to shake the commissioner's hand at NFL draft. A few Sun Devils could have that dream realized this weekend so we posed the following question to our staff of writers:
How many Sun Devils should be drafted and how many will be drafted this weekend?
Should: 3 Will: 3
Sutton and Bradford are going to be drafted, we get that much but I think a team may just take a chance on Grice, probably in round seven. He's not blazing fast but he is shifty and has great vision. When you add that to his pass-catching ability he's an intriguing prospect. Backs that can catch the ball well out of the backfield have been trending upwards in value in recent years and that's great news for Grice.
As for Coyle, Young, Darby, Nelson, Irabor, Coleman and Finkenberg, I think they all have chances to be signed after the draft. Young, Darby and Irabor in particular won't have to wait long for their phones to start ringing.
Special guest Mike Kaye (Bleeding Green Nation's associate editor and NFL draft writer)
Should: 4 Will: 3
I have four Sun Devils on my "Big Board" for the Eagles on Bleeding Green Nation. I also believe those are the four that have the best chance of being drafted. To me, Carl Bradford and Will Sutton are locks for day two and I think Marion Grice will go in the fourth round.
I also believe Alden Darby could be drafted after speaking with him in-depth and talking to a few sources around the league. It's not set in stone but I think Darby has NFL talent, despite his lack of speed. The issue with Sutton is that he's very short and it's hard to find the right fit for him. Ideally, he'd be a three-technique in a 4-3 defense but his girth has slowed him. Bradford has talked to several 3-4 teams and I think he ends up getting taken in the late second round. Grice is an absolute wild card. Prior to injury, I had him as a 2nd round grade.
Should: 3 Will: 2
The Sun Devils have not had good success with the NFL draft recently. A lot of players who had success at Arizona State did not hear their name called in the draft. The recent list includes: Gerrel Robinson, Keelan Johnson, Deveron Carr, Cameron Marshall and Brandon Magee. I see this year as a similar year for Arizona State where there is some disappointment on draft day.
The only two players who will surely get drafted are Will Sutton and Carl Bradford. I see both of those guys going within the first four rounds and I could even see Bradford as high as round two. The other player I think should be drafted is Marion Grice. I believe that if he stayed healthy and was able to workout at the combine he would be a late-round pick. The player besides those three that I could see being drafted is Osahon Irabor, mainly because it seems like every team in the NFL needs a cornerback.
So, I am going to go on the safe side and say that only Bradford and Sutton hear their names called with about 10 more Sun Devils signing undrafted free agent deals.
Should: 5 Will: 4
I believe that Will Sutton, Carl Bradford, Marion Grice and Robert Nelson will be drafted while Darby is added to my "should" list as well. Sutton and Bradford are the obvious choices and could contribute immediately on a lot of teams. You can improve skill but you can't make players taller or bigger without sacrificing some other area of their game so that's why Chris Coyle, Evan Finkenberg, Osahon Irabor, Davon Coleman and Gannon Conway don't make my list. Their names simply are too under the radar to warrant much attention.
I just don't see them being able to compete in the NFL where players who have the rare combination of skill and size are the norm. My list of guys who will get drafted are there because of their skill and statistics from their college career and ability to contribute and hang with bigger guys in the NFL. I think Darby did enough with his Shrine game performance and his great personality to hear his name called in New York City as well but teams might be hesitant given his size. Despite pro-day numbers, I honestly just don't see the size or production out of the rest of the group to warrant them getting drafted however a lot of them should sign undrafted free agent deals and see time in NFL camps once August rolls around.
Should: 3 Will: 2
I agree with Ryan here. Sutton and Bradford will be drafted for sure. Sutton may have dropped in value this season, but he's still a player that translates well to the next level. Running back Marion Grice probably won't get drafted because of his injury that he suffered near the end of last season. Grice has a nose for the end zone, and his biggest asset is his pass catching ability. But, I think teams might be concerned with his durability, and therefore, will wait to sign him as an undrafted free agent.
Osahon Irabor, Chris Young, Robert Nelson and Davon Coleman all have a chance at being drafted as well, but none of them are premier prospects. I expect them to be signed with teams as soon as the draft is over, and I also expect Chris Coyle, and Evan Finkenberg to be signed.
Should: 2 Will: 2
Will Sutton and Carl Bradford will get drafted. Everyone else is just a maybe. You can make a legitimate case that Marion Grice, Robert Nelson, Chris Young and Alden Darby should get drafted, but I'll err on the side of pessimism, especially considering payers like Brandon Magee, Cameron Marshall and others went undrafted last year. Grice in particular was superb for the Sun Devils last season, and I think of all the bubble players he has the best claim to a draft spot. But the combination of teams refusing to take running backs early and the sheer depth of backs in the draft (CBS Sports has Grice ranked No. 21) means Grice may have to wait until the draft is over to get a phone call.
Nelson, Young and Darby are in a similar boat. They were very good for a very good college football team, but don't quite have that separating factor to get them into the first seven rounds. That trio could very well find themselves signed by an NFL team, as could Christopher Coyle, Evan Finkenberg, Davon Coleman, Gannon Conway and Osahon Irabor. Sutton and Bradford will get drafted either Friday or Saturday, and as many as eight other former Sun Devils could be signed in the following days.
The staff is clearly split which means it's time to buckle your seat belts as we might be in for a wild weekend at the draft. Now we pose the same question to you, give us your answer as to how many Sun Devils should and will be drafted this weekend.