|05-03-2006, 03:14 PM||#1|
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Edmond, OK
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Sometimes these guys pan out for the best...ala Rod Smith...
SPORTS SPOTLIGHT: From draft day dumps to feeling about a mile high
Wednesday, May 3, 2006 SPORTS SPOTLIGHT TODD PORTER
CANTON - For two days, Tyler Everett waited. He watched players he knew he was better than get drafted by NFL teams. He had flown to five NFL cities for interviews and had worked out on two occasions for Chicago and Dallas at Ohio State’s indoor facility. The 5-foot-11, 200-pounder had all the predraft hype he needed.
The phone never rang. His agent, Eugene T. Lee, did field a call from the Green Bay Packers. They indicated Everett had moved up on their draft board, and they likely would take him during the second day of the NFL Draft.
The fourth round came. The fifth round went.
The Packers picked and picked. In the sixth round, they drafted Tyrone Culver from that football factory at Fresno State.
Everett fell asleep waiting for his call.
“I’d see some guys get picked, and it would be like, ‘Who’s that?’ ” Everett said. “Then there were guys I heard of and I know I’m better than, and they got drafted. It makes you mad. It was hard swallowing that. In the long run, time will tell who was right.”
Everett is an intelligent guy. He knew the score going into the draft, but he still believed he would get picked Sunday. His measurables — a 4.45 40-yard time, a 33 Wonderlic score, 38-inch vertical leap and 18 reps on the 225-pound bench press — were in line for a mid-round pick.
After Denver made its fourth-round pick, Broncos Head Coach Mike Shanahan called Everett. He said Denver wanted him but wouldn’t be able to draft him without a seventh-round selection.
“Keep us in mind,” Shanahan said. “We want you out here.”
The phone didn’t ring again until after the draft.
When it was over, Lee said he fielded calls from nearly a dozen teams. Pittsburgh, Detroit, Seattle, the Jets ... all wanted to sign his client to a free-agent contract.
“To be honest,” Lee said, “sometimes it’s better not to be drafted than it is to go in the sixth or seventh round. In Tyler’s situation, he got to choose the best fit for him. The place where he’d get an opportunity. When you’re drafted, you don’t choose. They choose you.”
There is, however, something to be said for being wanted.
That is where the Broncos come in.
Shortly after the draft concluded, Denver was on the phone with Lee. Shanahan wanted Everett more than any other team. He received a premium — for undrafted rookies — signing bonus, but nothing like the guys in the first four to five rounds get. It’ll be enough for a nice down payment on a car and to sock away in a savings account.
What the Broncos offered more than anyone else was the opportunity. Denver didn’t draft a defensive back, and Pro Bowl safety John Lynch is entering his 13th season. Shanahan stayed true to his word when he told Everett he would be the only rookie DB coming into camp.
“Denver came with a strong financial commitment for Tyler,” Lee said. “I think they’re looking at getting more from him than a training camp tryout and spot on the practice squad.”
Everett heads to Denver next month with a chip on his shoulder.
“Look, everybody wants to get drafted,” Everett said. “The situation I’m in is one of the best any rookie could be in.
“I’m not going there with a chip on my shoulder as much as I am with an interest to show 31 other teams they messed up.”
One of the first things Everett did was look at Denver’s schedule. The Broncos play Detroit in the preseason. The Lions gave Everett strong hints they would draft him.
They passed on him.
“There were a lot of teams saying all this about how they were going to pick me up,” Everett said. “The way I look at it, when we do come around to playing one of those teams who showed interest and didn’t take me, I’m going to make them pay for it.”
Really, for the first time in his career, Everett is the underdog.
And it will be good for him. He was an All-Ohioan at McKinley. He lettered four years at Ohio State and moved between safety and cornerback.
The versatility that attracted NFL teams to him is the same thing that hurt his draft stock. The NFL wants to see players, particularly defensive backs, play consistently over a period of time at one position. Everett never had that opportunity at Ohio State.
“That little chip is adding to the hunger,” Everett said. “I was going in there hungry anyway. Now this makes it even greater.”
Lynch is one of the smartest safeties in the league. He knows offenses like a coordinator. He knows how to study film. He knows how to prepare.
Everett said there will be no better understudy. He will be attached to Lynch’s hip in the meeting room.
“John Lynch has a reputation, and he has a position pretty much locked up,” Everett said. “Anybody else better be nervous. All I wanted was a chance. Give me one chance, and I will make the most of it. I’ve got that now, and I’m thankful for it.”
The NFL Draft is a game within a game. Everett got an education in it.
He also has something else.
Something to prove.
Reach Repository sports writer Todd Porter at (330) 580-8340 or e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
|05-03-2006, 03:23 PM||#3|
Draft Defense Early&Often
Join Date: Oct 2004
There is already a thread on this guy with basically the same article.
Last edited by Atlas; 05-03-2006 at 03:25 PM..
|05-03-2006, 03:35 PM||#4|
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Edmond, OK