The college bowl system may be watered down but it does provide for a final look at a number of draft-eligible players on a nationals stage. Here is the bowl schedule for today as well as a look at a few players that could be on the Lions’ radar come April.
Tostitos Fiesta Bowl
Oregon vs. Kansas State
8:30 p.m. ET, ESPN
Dion Jordan, DE, Oregon – The biggest freak athlete of the 2013 NFL Draft might be Oregon defensive end Dion Jordan. He has lined up everywhere from defensive end to outside linebacker to even covering a slot receiver. Jordan won’t be covering wide receivers in the NFL but it just goes to show the level of athleticism he brings to a defense. He is certain to draw interest from 4-3 and 3-4 defensive teams although he does not have experience as a defensive end out of a three-point stance. Some 4-3 teams may be turned off by his listed weight of just 243 pounds but at 6’6″ it would seem there is plenty of room to add bulk. He is likely to get drafted in the first round.
Arthur Brown, OLB, Kansas State – Brown was named the Big XII defensive player of the year in 2012 after leading Kansas State in tackles with 91, six tackles for loss, one sack and two interceptions. He’s a balanced defender against the run and pass and figures to be a second round draft pick.
Kyle Long, OT, Oregon – Kyle, son of NFL Hall of Famer Howie Long, will soon join his brother Chris in the NFL and could do so as a second day pick. Long is still regarded as a raw prospect but it is hard to argue with the bloodline or his 6’7″, 312 pound frame. He has also played both guard for the Ducks.
Kenjon Barner, RB, Oregon – With Martin Mayhew publicly admitting that counting on Jahvid Best’s return in 2012 was his biggest mistake, you can bet he will be looking to add an explosive back for 2013. Barner is similarly sized to Best and also brings an explosive element to an offense. He may never be suited for a featured back role but it wouldn’t be a surprise Barner to get drafted in the top 100.
Chris Harper, WR, Kansas State – Harper got his start as a quarterback at Oregon but transferred to Kansas State and has spent the last two years as their number one receiver. He possesses solid receiver skills and adequate speed. Could be a good value pick in round 4 or 5.