One of the more difficult parts of picking a player can sometimes be the risk associated with that pick. Character issues, run-ins with the law and health are just a few of the often mentioned question marks surrounding some of the prospects heading into this year’s draft. That’s just some of the more common concern material to boot. Fake girlfriends and ten failed drug tests weren’t even really touched upon, but oddly enough are also of concern with two of the more popular college stars heading to new NFL homes. For a look at the five riskies picks, that either meet all or some of the criteria or are just risky due to where they were picked read on.
1. Ezekiel Ansah 5th Overall Detroit Lions
The risk associated with Ansah has little to do with character issues or girlfriends of the non-existent variety. It lies in the fact that just a few years ago he hadn’t even a clue what football was. Physically Ansah presents all the tools needed to be an elite defensive end and maybe even in a few years an all-pro. His technique however leaves much to be desired and he also lacks a variety of moves to get by linemen. There is certainly some polishing to be done with this pick, the fifth overall in the draft.
2. E.J. Manuel 15th Overall Buffalo Bills
The Bills could have easily waited this one out and landed Manuel in the second or third round. They could have even traded down having possibly anticipated this and acquired more draft picks. Instead they draft Manuel who is nowhere near being a first round talent and now has to carry the pressure of being one.
3. Manti Te’o 38th Overall San Diego Chargers
Fake girlfriend over the internet hoax aside, the months leading up to this draft weren’t all that kind to Te’o. From Heisman candidate to butt end of every joke just like that, and to follow it all up an awful combine saw his draft stock spiral out of control. At one point he was considered a lock in the top five, and yet the Chargers landed him in the second round. Overreaction by the rest of the league or do the Chargers just not get it with Te’o? Time will tell.
4. Dee Milliner 9th Overall New York Jets
I can’t say I’m all that envious of Milliner’s position. The amount of pressure he’ll be under having to follow in Revis’ footsteps will be nothing short of ridiculous and that’s a lot for a young guy to handle. He’s by far the best corner in this draft, but it’s amazing how pressure can affect people. Were it not enough that he has to replace Darrelle Revis, he has to do it in New York; with the team that craves all the football attention the big apple has to offer - positive or negative.
5. Tyrann Mathieu 69th Overall Arizona Cardinals
This one is relatively self-explanatory. If you think otherwise let me remind you Mathieu failed over ten drug tests during his time at LSU - but hey, it was just for pot, we think? Because of this reefer madness Mathieu was forced to miss a year of football, which added even more uncertainty to his potential career in the NFL. That being said, there is no denying this kids talent and if anybody will be able to keep him in line it’s former teammate and mentor Patrick Peterson - who just so happens to be his current teammate now as well.
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