You can talk all you want about measurables, which NFL draft scouts seem to love, but the bottom line has always been production.
If a guy produces at Temple, he’s a damn good pick.
I thought Branden Mack would be drafted this year in the seventh round because he produced on a relatively high level for the Owls but his 4.6 speed in the 40 hurt him and he went UDFA to the Denver Broncos. The last Temple wide receiver who ran a 4.6 and was 6-5 was one of the Broncos’ five greatest receivers of all time in terms of production.
His name was Steve Watson.
Production was all Watson did at Temple so that wasn’t surprising. Mack will stick in my humble opinion because he has a lot of those Watson qualities.
Dan Archibong, on the other hand, did not produce to the level I thought he would his final two years with the Owls. I expected more sacks, fumble recoveries and tackles for losses with the Owls from Dan but just did not get it. The 1-6 record didn’t help either guy. I don’t think Dan will make the Bears but I hope he proves me wrong.
That’s why I think five guys from Temple have a chance to be drafted in 2022 because I can pick out five production guys.
To me, safety Amir Tyler and wide receiver Jadan Blue will be drafted in the 2022 draft because all they’ve done at Temple in their years here was produce. Tyler has been outspoken about the disloyalty of those 15 players who have left Temple and he’s got a great point on most of them. To me, Toddy Centeio and Anthony Russo made the correct decision in leaving. Toddy was stuck by Anthony and Russo was stuck in a bonehead offense that did not suit his passing skills. The others likely would in the future or would have been drafted higher if they remained at Temple. Quincy Roche and Kenny Yeboah found out the hard way.
The players who stay will outnumber the drafted players who left. You read it here first. It has less to do with the current coaching staff than it does their ability to capitalize on playing time they’ve already earned by being in the program over the last couple of years–playing time that is not guaranteed to them elsewhere.
Other guys, C.J. Perez, MIchael Niese and Randle Jones I believe will be drafted but that’s more related to their ability to turn the Owls from a loser to a winner than anything else.
Jones, to me (and head coach Rod Carey) is (Carey’s exact words) “a flat-out stud” who has not produced to a level of Blue simply because he hasn’t been on the field (injuries) as much. He is one of the fastest guys on the team in the 40, has great hands, and can make people miss. Jones just needs one year to be as durable as Blue has proven to be over the last couple. When Jones and Blue are on the field, the Owls have the best tandem of receivers in the league by far and maybe the top two overall.
Here’s all that Blue needs to do to be drafted in Round One: Catch double-digits in terms of touchdowns and more than 1,000 yards (again) in terms of receptions. Since he caught three spectacular touchdowns against Memphis last year in one game, I’m betting he can do it over a dozen. Blue just does not drop a football, even in tight traffic, and that the same cannot be said for Jalen Reagor of the Eagles, who got drafted high despite nine drops his senior year at Texas Christian.
Tyler needs to up his interceptions and pass deflections and he has the talent to do it.
Niese and Perez (and you can throw in Episcopal Academy’s Adam Klein) need to lead a dominating offensive line. Getting Iverson Clement and/or R’Von Bonner 1,000 yards and keeping D’Wan Mathis’ uniform clean will help.
Will it happen?
Can it happen?
Monday: North Philly’s Five Fastest Humans