NFL teams are constantly looking for hidden gems, especially from smaller schools that can end up being impact players at the next level. One such player, who hails from the Sunshine State, maybe the best running back that most of the country doesn’t know about. And, FAU’s Devin Singletary hopes to find himself being taken in the opening round of the upcoming NFL Draft.
— NFL Network (@nflnetwork) February 21, 2019
The top rusher not only in Conference USA, but in all of college football, over the last two seasons, Singletary amassed over 3,200 yards and 54 rushing touchdowns and made his mark for Lane Kiffin’s Owls.
As we wrote shortly after the regular season ended in December, Singletary had a decision to make about taking his talents to the NFL we’re coming back to FAU for one more year. He chose to go pro and who can really blame him?
Singletary , who hails from Deerfield Beach, was passed over by big time programs in the state like Florida, Florida State and Miami and had to make a name for himself in Boca Raton. He’s done that as a first-team All-Conference USA member last season, and in 2017 was the C-USA Player of the Year and named to the AP second-team All-American squad. Not bad accomplishments, at all.
So needless to say, if you follow the college game closely and NFL personnel executives and scouts do, there’s no doubt that Singletary has explosiveness and credentials to back it up.
Siciliano mentioned that one unnamed executive was hopeful that Singletary could blossom into a “LeSean McCoy type running back” and a host also alluded to Kiffin referring to Singletary as “Baby Bush.” That refers to former Saints first round pick, Reggie Bush, out of USC, when Kiffin was on staff coaching back in the 2000s.
Here is a further evaluation from our colleagues at the Draftnetwork.com about Singletary and whether his game can translate to the NFL?
And, Singletary has been invited to be interviewed and scrutinized more at the NFL Scouting Combing coming later this month.
Finally, while Singletary and Siciliano kicked around the idea of him being part of the opening night and first round, the safer bet is that he will probably be a night two draft pick.
His situation may not different from where Ronald Jones (Bucs) and Derrius Guice (Redskins) ended up being picked a year ago, at the beginning of the second round of the 2018 Draft.
Dolphins and Jaguars may be very interested in deep WR class
It’s never too soon to start talking about possible premium draft picks coming in April for the NFL’s 2020 draft. And, for the Dolphins and the Jaguars they may both very well be interested in what appears to be the deepest position this season.
NFL Network draft analyst Daniel Jeremiah has been touting the 20/20 receiving draft class for several weeks now. And, that included his appearance on the NFL Total Access show Thursday night:
— NFL Network (@nflnetwork) February 14, 2020
“I started scouting with the Baltimore Ravens in 2003. This is bar none, the deepest, best wide receiver class that I’ve seen, since I began scouting.”
To be more specific, Jeremiah has laid out the six receivers that he has right now in his top 25 of overall players The 2020 draft to be held in Las Vegas at the end of April. Those include: Oklahoma Speedster CeeDee Lamb, Alabama stud Jerry Jeudy, maybe the fastest player in the entire draft tide receiver Henry Ruggs III, National Champion LSU lanky speedster Justin Jefferson, Arizona State physical, big receiver Brandon Aiyuk and Colorado junior eligible Laviska Shenault.
As Jeremiah makes clear, not all of these receivers may end up going in the first round and there are several other names besides on his list that are probably NFL caliber who will still be around in the third round or later and yet make an impact on Sundays.
And that brings us to both the Dolphins and the Jaguars who are likely in need, especially early I’ll try to get one of these Playmakers.
In 2019, the Dolphins saw DeVante Parker develop into the possible number one yearly receiver that they believed he would become when they took him in the first round in 2015. Miami also has high hopes for un-drafted big receiver Preston Williams who was showing promise until suffering a torn ACL in midseason last year. However, other than that, Miami doesn’t have much else to hang their hat on.
As for Jacksonville, clearly in 2019 former second round pick D.J. Chark demonstrated that he has potential to be a number one receiver year in and year out. He showed an early connection with backup rookie quarterback Gardner Minshew, and Chark finished the season with 1,008 yards on 73 catches and 8 scores. Jacksonville also got good output from another guy with speed in Chris Conley.
But, from there the talent level drops off in North Florida.
So while there are plenty of factors and variables, like which receivers are when you are coming up for selection, there will apparently be no shortage of players to choose from that can make an impact on night three or even day three of the NFL Draft.
Prominent state names among NFL Combine invitees
A sign that the NFL Draft process is well underway is when the NFL publicizes their official list of players who will be attending the 2020 Scouting Combine at the end of the month.
— NFL (@NFL) February 7, 2020
Some of the most notable names include Heisman Trophy and National Championship winning LSU quarterback Joe Burrow, along with other potential number 1 draft picks at that position, Tua Tagovailoa of Alabama and Justin Herbert of Oregon. There was one state invitee at the QB position and that’s James Morgan, the FIU quarterback.
The running back position has Heisman finalist Jonathan Edwards and also, has several familiar names to state fans led by FSU leading rusher, Cam Akers.
Akers (photo above), who declared early for the 2020 draft giving up his final season of eligibility, is joined by Miami running back and receiving specialist DeeJay Dallas. Also invited was Florida under-sized power back LaMical Perine.
The wide receiver position is particularly deep with invitees by the NFL, and that includes the Gators trio of Tyrie Cleveland, Van Jefferson and Freddie Swain. Also, invited is outstanding UCF wide out Gabe Davis, who gave up his final year of eligibility in Orlando and will be at the combine.
Arguably the best tight end in the draft is Harrison Bryant of Florida Atlantic who led the position nationally in catches and yardage. Bryant could be a first round pick in late April. Also on the Combine list is USF tight end, Mitchell Wilcox.
On the defensive side of the ball is the leading pass-rushing sack artist from college football in 2019 in Chase Young of Ohio State. Miami’s Jonathan Garvin was another defensive lineman added to the mix. Next, Hurricanes linebackers Shaq Quarterman and teammate Michael Pinckney were among the linebacker invitees from Friday.
At defensive back, UCF’s Neville Clark is joined by Florida’s C.J. Henderson, FAU’s James Pierre and Florida State’s Stanford Samuels.
The combine is a five-day process allowing interviews for players with the 32 teams and then, individual position group workouts and 40 yard dash times that will take place at Indianapolis’ Lucas Oil Stadium.
The NFL Network still holds the exclusive rights to televise the workouts, which has now expanded to over 50 hours of coverage for that week