After months of preparation, drills, practices and meetings, the NFL Draft is here. Later tonight, 256 players will hear their names called and fulfill a lifelong dream of making it to the NFL. Auburn has several players declared for the draft, and ESPN's Matt Miller has built a mock draft covering all seven rounds.
He has predicted four Auburn players will be selected over the next three days.
Edge Rusher Derick Hall - Round 2
Miller has Hall going in the second round to the Lions. Hall has been consistently projected as a Day 2 pick by various draft analysts. Back-to-back 7+ sack campaigns raised his stock as Hall stepped up as a true leader of the defense in the last two seasons of his Auburn career. If taken in the second round, he would be Auburn's fifth player in the last five drafts to be taken in the first two rounds. Hall has been Auburn's highest-rated prospect of the draft class, but he is not the only Tiger expected to be taken on Day 2.
Running Back Tank Bigsby - Round 4
Auburn's star running back for the last three years impressed at the NFL Combine and has consistently received a third or fourth-round grade from draft experts, with Miller predicting that Bigsby will be taken by the Denver Broncos with the No. 108 pick. NFL.com's own Lance Zierlein gave Bigsby a fourth-round grade, while CBS Sports analysts Ryan Wilson and Chris Trapasso have him going in the third round. With three-straight 800-yard seasons, Bigbsy brings consistency and film against solid SEC defenses to whatever team selects him.
Defensive Lineman Colby Wooden - Round 4
Miller has Wooden going as the No. 110 selection to the Atlanta Falcons, who received the pick via trade with the Titans. The Falcons selected another Auburn defensive lineman, Marlon Davidson, in the 2020 NFL Draft, taking Davidson in the second round. Last season, Wooden showcased his versatility as the defensive line struggled with depth, specifically following Eku Leota's season-ending injury. He started in every game last season and set career highs in every category other than tackles.
Linebacker Owen Pappoe - Round 5
Owen Pappoe's big day at the NFL Combine, with the No. 17 40-yard dash time among all prospects and the top time for linebackers, has led right into the NFL Draft. Miller has Pappoe going in the fifth round as the No. 164 pick to the San Francisco 49ers. Pappoe has received extensive praise for his physical attributes, but NFL.com's Zierlein lists his lack of on-the-field production and impact as why he has fourth-fifth round grade on the four-year starter. His sophomore and senior campaigns were his best in the orange-and-blue, racking up 93 tackles in each season.
There have been some experts giving EDGE Eku Leota a fifth or sixth-round grade, but the injury keeping Leota out of the NFL Combine and the Auburn Pro Day has most projections putting him as an undrafted free agent. Another possible Auburn draftee is Shedrick Jackson, whose lack of production due to a limited offense has hurt his stock, but his 4.25 40-yard dash at Auburn's Pro Day turned some heads and could lead to a surprise 7th-round selection, despite most experts giving him an undrafted grade.
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