Any chances that Ohio State offensive tackle Mike Adams had of being selected in the first round of the 2012 NFL draft have likely gone up in smoke, as reports surfaced on Thursday that the 6'7", 323-pound senior tested positive for marijuana at February's NFL Scouting Combine.
Jason La Canfora of the NFL Network broke the news, reporting that Adams has cooperated fully with the league's policies and already completed a counseling program, which may prevent his draft stock from going into free-fall.
Adams has told people he was unaware of the positive result at the time of combine interviews, which is why he did not tell teams then.
Since then he has been forthright and league sources said he is viewed as a "good kid" who obviously made a mistake. The key for Adams will be learning from it. Several teams said they were impressed with Adams during interviews with him. Several teams picking late in the first round and early in the second round are in the market for offensive linemen in this draft.
However well he may be handling the situation, this is just another red flag for Adams. He had already seen his draft stock drop somewhat after an abysmal showing in the bench press at the combine. This led to questions about Adams' upper body strength.
Adams did do exceedingly well in the Oreo dunk, though, which makes a lot more sense now.
Kidding aside, before this news broke, there was a decent chance that Adams' experience at both tackle spots and impressive collegiate resume might have slipped him back into the first round.
Several teams picking near the end of the round, including both of last year's participants in the Super Bowl, could use help at the tackle position.
However, those first-round dreams are now probably toast. Question marks over his workouts, failed drug test and suspensions in college are issues that NFL teams will generally only overlook at that stage in the draft if they believe that a player is an elite athletic prospect.
Adams was a standout for one of college football's premier programs and may well become a quality starter in the NFL, but very few pundits view him as having "elite" potential.
That being said, as CBS Sports reports, many feel he has the potential to become a solid pro.
At this point Adams lacks the great technique that would make him a reliable left tackle to protect a right-handed quarterback's blind side. Given time he certainly could learn.
How Much Does Mike Adams' Failed Drug Test Affect His Draft Stock?
Meantime, Adams already moves well enough to get into linebackers on the second level. He has a substantial frame with conspicuous muscle in the right places and the footwork of a dancer, albeit more like hip hop than ballet. On film he did well handling Wisconsin's J.J. Watt (drafted No. 11 overall by Texas last year), but was befuddled by the nifty moves of Purdue's Ryan Kerrigan (drafted No. 16 overall by Washington last year).
That potential likely won't overcome his "pot-tential", however (sorry about that), and this latest news (which somewhat curiously is just now becoming public) will almost certainly foretell a mini-tumble of sorts for Adams in the draft.
This may cost him some cheddar, but could actually end up being a blessing in disguise for the team that drafts him if this truly is an isolated incident.
However, the tackle position still carries with it a heavy premium in the NFL draft. The Cleveland Browns, St. Louis Rams and Buffalo Bills all pick early in the second round and have a need for help up front. Therefore, unless Mike Adams gets busted doing bong hits in the next week, it's unlikely that the toll his toke will take on his draft stock will harsh his buzz too badly.