clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Where are former Syracuse football players getting picked in the 2019 NFL Draft?

New, 1 comment

A quick look at where we might see players picked in the lead-up to the start of the draft on Thursday.

NFL: 2017 NFL Draft Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The 2019 NFL Draft starts on Thursday, and while no former Syracuse Orange players will be selected in the first few rounds, there’s a good chance we’ll hear at least one name called this weekend.

We’ve already previewed the five most likely players to get drafted. So below, you’ll find links to those profiles as well as looks at where those guys — plus a few more — could find themselves either during the seven-round event, or shortly thereafter as an undrafted free agent.

Chris Slayton, defensive tackle (draft profile)

Projected round: 5-7

Projected teams: Buffalo Bills, Arizona Cardinals, Indianapolis Colts, Atlanta Falcons, New England Patriots

Obviously a lot can change from the current draft order, but these are teams with defensive tackle needs and at least a pick or two in the range above. There’s a chance all have addressed the tackle need by this point in the draft, but drafting one player there early doesn’t necessarily mean a team’s done adding prospects at the position. The Bills have potentially gotten the best look at Slayton up close, and have five selections between rounds five and seven.

NFL: Combine Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Jamal Custis, wide receiver (draft profile)

Projected round: 7/Undrafted Free Agent

Projected teams: Buffalo Bills, Dallas Cowboys, Green Bay Packers, Minnesota Vikings, Detroit Lions

The teams above need a wide receiver, but not primarily, so other needs will come first. All of them also have picks in the seventh round, though again, trades happen frequently. Another team that could be in the mix for Custis’s services is Arizona, which currently owns three of the final seven picks in the draft. These are also teams that will be in the mix for top free agent receivers if he isn’t selected.

Eric Dungey, quarterback (draft profile)

Projected round: Undrafted Free Agent

Projected teams: Cincinnati Bengals, Los Angeles Chargers, Oakland Raiders, New England Patriots, Washington

Since it’s highly likely Dungey’s going the undrafted route, these are teams that have a secondary need for a QB and could potentially have some interest in getting creative — since that’s what’s most likely to get him picked. Based largely on Gruden’s apparent preference for a certain type of player (gritty, “hard-working,” etc.), Oakland just seems like a reasonable landing spot to me.

Koda Martin, offensive tackle (draft profile)

Projected round: 7/Undrafted Free Agent

Projected teams: Houston Texans, Los Angeles Rams, Atlanta Falcons, Arizona Cardinals, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Have actually seen Martin rising in a couple mock drafts lately, and the Cards actually become one of the more likely outcomes given the aforementioned glut of late seventh round picks. Plenty more teams would invest in an offensive tackle, however. If he winds up as a free agent (likely), that list above expands quite a bit.

Cody Conway, offensive tackle (draft profile)

Projected round: Undrafted Free Agent

Projected teams: Houston Texans, San Francisco 49ers, Denver Broncos, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Seattle Seahawks

Conway’s going the free agent route, but the list of teams that could use another offensive tackle is going to be sort of similar to the one above with Martin. The teams added here could easily be swapped in for any of those above. It’s also easy to expand the list to teams just taking fliers out on guys for the practice squad.

Syracuse v Pittsburgh Photo by Justin Berl/Getty Images

Ryan Guthrie, linebacker

Projected round: Undrafted free agent

Projected teams: Los Angeles Chargers, Miami Dolphins, Minnesota Vikings, Seattle Seahawks, Dallas Cowboys

Guthrie came on strong as a senior, and combined with his JUCO highlight reel, there’s actually a lot to look at for scouts. There are a ton of linebackers to choose from, and teams could always use another one. The biggest question will be fit, and we know Guthrie’s more of a blitzing linebacker than one that can play in pass coverage. So whoever picks him up will have a greater focus on tackles for loss.

Kielan Whitner, linebacker

Projected round: Undrafted free agent

Projected teams: Los Angeles Chargers, Miami Dolphins, Minnesota Vikings, Seattle Seahawks, Dallas Cowboys

On the other side of the coin at linebacker is Whitner, who’s a former safety and will be a bit more coverage focused than Guthrie. Again, it’s all about fit.

Ravian Pierce, tight end

Projected round: Undrafted free agent

Projected teams: Buffalo Bills, Denver Broncos, New Orleans Saints, Cincinnati Bengals, Tennessee Titans

Going into last year, we thought Pierce could play himself into a draft position. And while that didn’t happen due to injuries and a greater blocking focus, he may actually be underrated as a prospect now. Pierce is a quality receiver, but a very adept blocker, which is a pretty valuable lane for a team that needs it.

Dontae Strickland, running back

Projected round: Undrafted free agent

Projected teams: Chicago Bears, Buffalo Bills, Jacksonville Jaguars, Houston Texans, Baltimore Ravens

Strickland improved throughout his time at Syracuse, and you saw how he was able to run well inside between the tackles behind a capable offensive line. He’s also a very good receiving option out of the backfield, which is a good skill to be able to bring to the table.