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Kiper's top 5s: Returning players

Think of this list as an early guide to the 2011 NFL draft

Originally Published: April 7, 2010
By Mel Kiper Jr. | ESPN Insider

Right now, your attention logically is focused on the 2010 NFL draft; pick No. 1 will be read in 15 days. This list, however, is made up of players who are not in the pool for April's NFL draft, but could have been, had they opted to jump. You can think of it as an early road map for the 2011 NFL draft. Obviously, some of the top sophomores in the nation also will be in this mix next season.

Things will change greatly in the summer and fall, of course, but guys like Ryan Mallett (even with the foot injury), DeAndre McDaniel, Marvin Austin and Terrance Toliver will be names to know and watch for.

I started checking more tape of these guys in the past two weeks, so you'll see names here like Colin McCarthy and Christian Anthony that previously weren't on this list. They may be risers once August and the fall roll around.

You can find my latest mock draft for 2010, with colleague Todd McShay, here.

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