THE DRAFT IS TOMORROW. HERE ARE THE BEST MAC PLAYERS IN THE 2021 DRAFT POOL.
Finally, almost. The NFL Draft still isn’t until tomorrow, which means I don’t want to hear anything that rhymes with Gushtin Speilds or Ack Bones or Style Hitts until the Quacksonville Quaguars are on the clock. I’m tired of it. All of this is an economic injustice to these players, but we’re too busy mocking picks and projecting trades and not focusing enough attention to the fact that these guys should be able to negotiate with all willing teams for jobs out of college. Well guess what: I’m not going to get into that either today!
Insert: The 2021 Big MAC Board (working on the title). This is my first time ever doing one of these, so I’ll spend just about as much time explaining this thing as I did filling it out. Below is a list of my top 10 players out of the MAC in this year’s draft pool.
2021 BIG MAC BOARD
- WR, D’Wayne Eskridge (Western Michigan)
- TE, Quintin Morris (Bowling Green)
- EDGE, Malcolm Koonce (Buffalo)
- CB, Antonio Phillips (Ball State)
- RB, Jaret Patterson (Buffalo)
- WR, Antonio Nunn (Buffalo)
- OT, Jaylon Moore (Western Michigan)
- OT, Tommy Doyle (Miami)
- CB, Manny Rugamba (Miami)
- WR, Isaiah McKoy (Kent State)
Best of the rest, by alphabetical last name: OT Kayode Awosika (Buffalo), TE Daniel Crawford (Northern Illinois) WR Antwan Davis (Ball State), RB Bryson Denley (Bowling Green), RB Caleb Huntley (Ball State), IOL Brett Kitrell (Ohio), QB David Moore (Central Michigan), RB Shakif Seymour (Toledo), OL Tim Tanner-Blair (Bowling Green), OG Ray Thomas-Ishman (Buffalo), LB Tyree Thompson (Buffalo)
Eskridge has the highest profile of any player this year, and that’s not at all a hot take. He’s a receiver that truly figured some things out and made the most of the 2020 shortened season by demanding some attention with his film. He’s not just an elite sprinter with hands. He’s a legit receiver, and I woulnd’t be surprised if he ended up being somebody’s WR1 during his pro football lifetime.
After that, it’s anybody’s guess! There are a lot of mock drafts out there with some of these names ranked 2–10 ranked higher than others, but those aren’t my mock drafts. Mock drafts also don’t totally teach you who’s actually better than whoever else, or why somebody might end up as an undrafted free agent instead of a 5th-round pick. But if I were in charge of a football team, Quintin Morris is somebody who I think could end up lasting in the league at his position. He didn’t have too many opportunities to make plays at Bowling Green so his film is hard to grade. Tyler Conklin, CMU grad, was a 5th-round draft pick in 2018 to be a TE for the Minnesota Vikings, and the two TEs had relatively comparable combine/pro day numbers.
- Conklin 2018: 40-yard: 4.80 / Bench: 18 reps / Vert: 38″ / Broad: 120″ / 3-cone: 7.13 / Shuttle: 4.23
- Morris 2021: 40-yard: 4.60 / Bench: 22 reps / Vert: 34″ / Broad: 119″ / 3-cone: 7.12 / Shuttle: 4.55
Koonce is an appealing EDGE player, but there are so many good EDGE players in this year’s draft, so it’ll be thought to see whereabouts in the middle Koonce falls. The same could be said for Phillips at CB and Patterson at RB.