2012 NFL Supplemental Draft: Best Players Not Named Josh Gordon or Ed Wesley

Michael Carroll@mjcarroll531Featured ColumnistJuly 12, 2012

ARLINGTON, TX - OCTOBER 28:  Ed Wesley #34 of the TCU Horned Frogs runs during a game against the BYU Cougars at Cowboys Stadium on October 28, 2011 in Arlington, Texas. The TCU Horned Frogs defeated the BYU Cougars 38-28.  (Photo by Sarah Glenn/Getty Images)
Sarah Glenn/Getty Images

Only one player was selected in the 2012 NFL Supplemental Draft on Thursday. That player was former Baylor University and University of Utah wide receiver Josh Gordon, who the Cleveland Browns selected in the second round. As a result, the Browns must surrender their second round selection in the 2013 NFL Draft.

In 2010, Gordon was Baylor's No. 1 wide receiver, not Kendall Wright. The Tennessee Titans drafted Wright No. 20 overall in the 2012 NFL Draft.

Had Gordon played for Baylor in 2011, perhaps he—and not Wright—would have gotten drafted.

Here is Gordon’s story according to ESPN.com:

[Gordon] spent last season out of football after Baylor dismissed him from the team in August 2011. Gordon then transferred to Utah but had to leave the school for the supplemental draft for financial reasons. Gordon left Baylor after being suspended for violating an unspecified rule. [Gordon] said it was for a failed drug test.

Gordon never played for the University of Utah because he had to sit out a year per NCAA transfer rules. Now that he can make an NFL roster, Gordon can put his past behind him.

Gordon proved he can still run after posting a 4.52 40-yard dash on July 10. Now, he must prove to Browns head coach Pat Shurmur he can still play football.

Another entrant into the 2012 Supplemental Draft was Texas Christian University running back Ed Wesley. Heading into 2011, Wesley was considered one of college football’s best running backs, as he made the Maxwell Award and Doak Walker Award watch lists.

Why, then, was Wesley ineligible for the 2012 NFL Draft? According to Adam Stites from Big Cat Country, a blog for the Jacksonville Jaguars:

Wesley initially considered leaving TCU after the 2011 season to enter the 2012 NFL Draft so as to afford to assist his ailing mother, but instead decided to stay. But in late March, long past the deadline to declare for the draft he changed his mind.

Now, Wesley, like the rest of the entrants, will need to prove themselves to NFL franchises as undrafted free agents.

I think other entrants besides Gordon and Wesley should have a shot at an NFL roster.

Syracuse University fullback Adam Harris helped two different Orange running backs gain 1,000 yards in a season: Delone Carter (2010) and Antwon Bailey (2011). Carter was a fourth-round selection of the Indianapolis Colts in the 2011 NFL Draft, and Bailey signed with the Washington Redskins as an undrafted free agent in 2012.

Harris transferred to Syracuse from Cornell University prior to the 2009 season. After sitting out 2009 per NCAA transfer rules, Harris played in 23 games for the Orange in two seasons. According to Nolan Weidner of Syracuse.com, Harris has suffered three concussions during his collegiate football career, but neurologists in Pittsburgh cleared Harris to play back in May.

Harris has two degrees to fall back on in case the NFL never calls him. The concussion history might have scared NFL franchises away, but otherwise, Harris is a high-character, intellectual player with strong leadership skills.

Larry Lumpkin of Carson-Newman University ran a sub-4.8 40-yard dash at his pro day on July 11. Unfortunately for Lumpkin, the New Orleans Saints and the Seattle Seahawks were the only NFL franchises who came to watch.

At 6’0” and 241 pounds, Lumpkin possesses adequate speed. NFL franchises looking for a special teams linebacker could reach out to him, but his questionable character traits definitely lowered his stock.

According to Rob Rang of The Sports Xchange, Lumpkin had academic issues at both colleges he attended: first Alabama A&M University and then Carson-Newman University. The latter school dismissed him for academic reasons, after which Lumpkin decided to enter the 2012 NFL Supplemental Draft.

There are two weeks left before NFL Training Camp 2012 opens on July 26. If any NFL franchises need to fill holes in their rosters between now and the beginning of the season, Wesley, Harris and Lumpkin are three guys they could sign.