It’s going to be a good 2014 NFL draft for the Pac-12. So says Sports Illustrated. The magazine has released a 2014 mock draft and -- assuming some players come out early -- it could be a nice haul for the conference. Nicer than we’ve seen in quite some time.
Of course, a lot can happen between now and next April. Stocks will rise and fall with every pass/incomplete, catch/drop and tackle/missed tackle. Public perception will go all coo-coo bananas on a week-to-week basis. Writer Chris Burke even stipulates that this is more of an exercise on getting the word out about top prospects -- rather than trying to turn the next draft/draft order into exact science. It's an offseason conversation-starter. So enjoy, and take it for what it's worth.
In other words, take everything below with a grain (or spoonful) of salt. Plenty will stay up in the air for the next 360 or so days. But let’s take a glance anyway at which players might crack Round 1 come the 2014 draft.
There are a few names that could even be added to this list -- Marcus Mariota, Ka'Deem Carey, Xavier Su'a-Filo and Jordan Richards come to mind. And if Keith Price returns to his 2011 form, which many see happening in Washington's new up-tempo offense, we could see his stock trend back up to where it was a year ago.
Here’s the list of SI's 10 potential first-round picks from the Pac-12.
Marqise Lee, WR, USC, No. 4, Cleveland Browns
Brett Hundley, QB, UCLA, No. 9, Philadelphia Eagles
Morgan Breslin, DE, USC, No. 10, Tennessee Titans
Will Sutton, DT, Arizona State, No. 14, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Austin Seferian-Jenkins, Washington, TE, No. 15, Pittsburgh Steelers
Ifo Ekpre-Olomu, CB, Oregon, No. 19, St. Louis Rams
Anthony Barr, OLB, UCLA, No. 20, Chicago Bears
Ed Reynolds, S, Stanford, No. 25, Green Bay Packers
Colt Lyerla, TE, Oregon, No. 27, Seattle Seahawks
David Yankey, OG, Stanford, No. 30, Atlanta Falcons