What if Sam Bradford had declared for the draft?

April, 24, 2009
4/24/09
9:05
AM ET

Posted by ESPN.com's Tim Griffin

It's an intriguing question: How high would Oklahoma quarterback Sam Bradford have gone in the NFL draft if he had declared back in January?

The Heisman Trophy winner likely would have been the highest quarterback taken in Big 12 history and could have been the No. 1 pick.

He instead has chosen to return for his junior season and hopes to lead the Sooners to an unprecedented four-peat of Big 12 titles.

Jake Trotter of the Oklahoman has a thought-provoking piece this morning that analyzed Bradford's decision from a variety of angles.

If anything, it guarantees that the Big 12's draft profile should remain strong for another year.

With a boatload of top picks expected in Saturday's first round, the Big 12 will be well-represented.

And if Bradford can keep progressing and stay away from injuries, he likely could become the first Big 12 player ever to be selected as the No. 1 pick in the NFL draft after next season.

It will be interesting to watch it all play out -- both on Saturday and for Bradford throughout the upcoming season.

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