2013 NFL Draft: 4 Prospects from Texas Schools Who Shouldn't Be Overlooked
The NFL draft will host several Texas standouts in 2013, including Luke Joeckel and Damontre Moore from Texas A&M, as well as Kenny Vaccaro from The University of Texas. These players are undoubtedly first-round prospects.
However, they aren’t the only Lone Star prodigies.
The class of 2013 also contains a few other players that, for some reason or other, aren’t placing as highly in most NFL mock drafts. Despite injuries or other off-field issues, these four athletes would be a valuable addition to any NFL franchise.
Marquise Goodwin, University of Texas: Wide Receiver
It would be a shame for any team to pass early on this Olympian.
While Goodwin posted 2,776 career all-purpose yards at Texas, he was crowded inside an offense loaded with similar talent, including the likes of D.J. Monroe and Daje Johnson. On top of that, former co-offensive coordinator Bryan Harsin employed a power running strategy that couldn’t utilize Goodwin’s skill-set, besides occasional jet sweeps.
At 5’9” and 180 lb., size could concern some NFL scouts, but nevertheless, Goodwin has the raw athleticism to play a multitude of positions. Whether you want him to go out for passes, return kicks, or run the ball, there’s use for him at the next level.
Christine Michael, Texas A&M University: Running Back
Christine Michael was a promising 5-star recruit from Beaumont West Brook High School in 2009, and during his first year, the tough back ran for 844 yards and 10 touchdowns. Unfortunately, his career thereafter in College Station was riddled with obstacles.
Michael suffered a broken leg in 2010, and a torn ACL in 2011, ending both his sophomore and junior seasons prematurely. When head coach Kevin Sumlin arrived in 2012, Michael never seemed to gel with the him or his system, leading to less playing time. His career totals in Aggieland were 2,791 yards and 35 touchdowns.
Those things aside, the 5’11”, 220 lb. Michael is a hard runner with 4.4-speed. He proved that during the 2013 East-West Shrine Game.
Regardless of his early college hurdles, Michael’s running abilities would help upgrade any backfield in the NFL.
Manase Foketi, West Texas A&M University: Offensive Tackle
The class of 2013 is filled with a slew of excellent offensive linemen. 6’5”, 333 lb. Manase Foketi is one of those excellent linemen.
Foketi, however, took a very odd route in pursuit of the NFL. Arriving at Kansas State after a stint in JUCO, Foketi started all 13 games at left tackle in 2010. The Wildcats gained an average 200 yards per game in '10, which ranked second in Big 12 play and 20th nationally.
He returned in 2011, but tore his Achilles tendon in only the second game. Foketi received a medical redshirt to return, but due to personal reasons, decided to transfer. In spite of that, K-State denied his request to be released.
Thus, Foketi finished his career at West Texas A&M, where he became a finalist for the Gene Upshaw Division II Lineman of the Year Award. Foketi might’ve faced some bumps in the road, but he’s a solid player that can bolster an O-line in need.
Stansly Maponga, Texas Christian University: Defensive End
After three great seasons at TCU, Stansly Maponga declared for the 2013 NFL Draft with one year of eligibility left.
In 2011, the stingy defender made 55 tackles, 9 sacks and 13.5 tackles for a loss. His play led to a first-team All-Mountain West superlative.
There was a noticeable drop in Maponga’s productivity during 2012, when his numbers fell to 26 tackles, 4 sacks, and 6.5 tackles for loss. However, considering he missed two games and portions of others due to a lingering leg injury, Maponga still fared pretty well, earning an All-Big 12 First Team selection.
6’2”, 265 lb. Maponga isn’t as big as some other defensive ends in the 2013 draft class, but he’s a natural pass-rusher that’s quick off the snap. In some 3-4 defensive fronts, he may need to play outside linebacker, but Maponga is a versatile player and should be up to the task.