Less than two weeks after Jameis Winston said he might not attend the 2015 NFL Draft, Marcus Mariota said he plans to be in Hawaii with his friends and family instead of shaking hands with Roger Goodell in Chicago April 30.
A source said that it is important for Mariota to be where he was raised for both cultural and personal reasons. The source also said that Mariota showed appropriate respect to the league when informing them of his decision. And although it may seem like a blow to the NFL to have both top quarterbacks not attend the draft, Goodell said he doesn’t have a problem with it.
"I'm not concerned with that," Goodell said. "I think that it's something we respect when a player says, 'I'd like to be with my family on that day.' It's an important day for them also."
Winston said during his pro day Tuesday that he still isn’t sure where he will be for the draft.
"We really haven't made that decision yet," Winston said. "There's been a lot of pressure on people trying to get me to come and make the draft."
Winston and Mariota are expected to go early in the first round with Winston being projected to go first overall to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, while Mariota’s landing place is still very much a mystery.