Posted by Ryan Wilson
The Oakland Raiders are who we thought they were: a team madly in love with size and speed. They reaffirmed that love again Monday when they used a third-round pick in the NFL Supplemental Draft to take former Ohio State quarterback Terrelle Pryor, a prospect most draft analysts and personnel types had pegged as a late-round selection.
Pre-draft analysis matters little now; the Raiders are neither conventional nor particularly interested in what the rest of the football world thinks. Owner Al Davis wants guys who can run faster, throw farther and hit harder than than everybody else. But we already knew that because that's always been the case. Now the question is if Pryor can harness that raw athleticism into something that will make him more than a supplemental draft footnote.
Which brings us to this: Who are some of the best NFL players to come out of the supplemental draft?
Glad you asked -- let's get to this…
Bernie Kosar, QB, University of Miami, 1st round, 1985. According to NFL.com's Elliot Harrison, Kosar finagled his way into the supplemental draft -- and deftly avoided the regular draft -- when his agent failed to file the paperwork by the deadline, and it left Kosar available for the supplemental process later that summer. "Controversy erupted, as Minnesota desperately wanted to draft Kosar, but ultimately Commissioner Pete Rozelle left the decision up to the kid. The rest is history. Kosar led Cleveland to the playoffs five straight seasons from 1985 to 1989, including three AFC Championship Game appearances."
Brian Bosworth, LB, Oklahoma, 1st round, 1987. Bosworth was brash but he was also one of the best linebackers in college history. He opted for the supplemental draft to avoid landing with the Bills or Colts, and ultimately ended up with the Seahawks. Other than a brief acting career that made for unintentionally hilarious moments, Boz is probably best remembered for getting trucked by Bo Jackson.
Cris Carter, WR, Ohio State, 4th round, 1987. Carter played 16 NFL seasons with the Eagles, Vikings and Dolphins, and finished his career with 1,101 catches, 13,899 yards receiving and 130 touchdowns. He was part of the 1998 Vikings team that went 15-1 under head coach Dennis Green (and offensive coordinator Brian Billick), and featured Randall Cunningham at quarterback. Some guy named Randy Moss was a rookie for Minnesota that year, too.
|Pryor's Journey to Oakland|
Steve Walsh, QB, University of Miami, 1st round, 1989. The Cowboys used a first-round pick on Walsh months after they had taken Troy Aikman in the first round of the regular draft. Then-head coach Jimmy Johnson had coached Walsh at the University of Miami, and presumably he thought Walsh gave the Cowboys the best chance to win. Instead, he started just five games during that first season and never was able to unseat Aikman. The rest (in Dallas, anyway) was history. Walsh had an 11-year NFL career, playing for six NFL teams, even making several playoff appearances.
Bobby Humphrey, RB, Alabama, 1st round, 1989. As a rookie with the Broncos, he rushed for 1,151 yards and seven touchdowns, and played in Super Bowl XXIV, a 55-10 drubbing at the hands of the 49ers. Two years later, Humphrey held out in the hopes of a new contract, the team stood firm, and he finally returned to the field in Week 14. By then, Gaston Green was the Broncos' new back, proving yet again that running backs are fungible.
Rob Moore, WR, Syracuse, 1st round, 1990. He played for 10 NFL seasons with the Jets and Cardinals, his best effort coming in 1997 when he hauled in 97 passes for 1,584 yards, and eight touchdowns. He averaged 99 yards receiving per game that season.
Jamal Williams, DT, Oklahoma State, 2nd round, 1998. It wasn't long ago that Williams was considered one of the most dominating nose tackles in football. Now 35, his game isn't where it once was, but he's still formidable enough to regularly require double-teams. Williams opted for the supplemental draft after he was declared academically ineligible at Oklahoma State.
Ahmad Brooks, LB, Virginia, 3rd round, 2006. Brooks was occasionally described as "the next Ray Lewis" while at UVA, but he was dismissed from the team which explains how he ended up in the supplemental draft. It's hardly surprising that the Bengals took a flier on a player with off-field concerns and amazing physical skills. Also not surprising: a player drafted by the Bengals has yet to live up to expectations. Cincinnati cut Brooks before the 2008 season, and he has spent the last three years with the 49ers, where he has started just once in that time.
Jared Gaither, OT, Maryland, 5th round, 2007. Gaither is another high-upside guy who the Ravens never could properly motivate. He played well enough to earn the starting left tackle job, even after the team drafted Michael Oher. But injuries and a questionable work ethic was enough for Baltimore to let him walk in free agency this summer. Gaither's now with the Chiefs.
Terrelle Pryor, QB, Ohio State, 3rd round, 2011. To be continued…
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