NFL Supplemental Draft Preview


If you have no idea what the supplemental draft is, or can’t figure out why NFL teams rarely get players from the draft, well you’re not alone. The annual supplemental draft isn’t the even that the April draft is, because rarely do the players involved have any sort of impact on their new team.

Here’s how it works. Players who were not eligible for April’s draft because they didn’t declare for it, but have sense lost their eligibility to play for their college team for one reason or another, can petition the NFL to be included in the Supplemental draft. Usually these players are would-be seniors who have off-field or academic issues that  cost them their college eligibility.

The supplemental draft allows these players to enter the NFL now, instead of having to sit out an entire year without playing, and then try and enter the league through the draft next season.

But it’s also the off-field problems that tend to make these players unsuccessful in the NFL as well. For example, players with drug problems in college tend to have drug problems in the NFL. Thus, the supplemental draft is rarely a place where you find worthwhile players.

This year, there are 8 players available for the supplemental draft:

  • Boise State DB Quaylon Ewing
  • Baylor WR Josh Gordon
  • Syracuse RB Adam Harris
  • Iowa State T Adrian Haughton
  • Carson-Newman LB Larry Lumpkin
  • Georgia DE Montez Robinson
  • McMurray WR Houston Tuminello
  • TCU RB Ed Wesley

Of the group, only 2 appear to be interesting talents for an NFL team. Josh Gordon, who actually transfered to Utah after 2010 season and thus had to sit out all of 2011, is a 6-4 225 lb. receiver with great speed and good hands. He’s the type of deep threat that would normally be taken very high in the draft.

I’ve seen scouting reports that list him an anywhere from the mid-first to late 2nd round talent had he been in next April’s draft. The problem is that he was suspended from Baylor after a drug arrest, and his coming out now from Utah suggests that there’s been additional trouble for him.

Just about any team might be interested in acquiring Gordon, but it all comes down to the cost. The Seahawks could use his skill, but just how high of a draft pick will they be willing to risk on a player that comes with the type of baggage that Gordon does? Ultimately, I think someone, perhaps the Jets, will likely take a flyer on him with the third round pick.

The other interesting player in this group is Ed Wesley. He doesn’t have amazing measurables; decent but not great speed on his 5-9 200 lb. frame. He also doesn’t have much elusiveness. What he does have is good visions and a decisive running style that will excel in an offense that has a zone blocking scheme.

Because of that, I really expect Washington, Houston or Oakland to be willing to give up a pick in order to acquire his services. Wesley’s injury history and lack of top flight speed means that he’s likely a backup or a “running back by committee” back, so I don’t think anyone will be willing to pay above a 5th rounder. Since the Seahawks picked Robert Turbin in April, I don’t expect them to be interested.

I don’t expect any team to be wiling to give up a pick for any of the other player 6 available players.