NFL Draft 2013: College Studs Not Worth 1st-Round Pick

Aaron Siegal-Eisman@@ASiegalEismanFeatured ColumnistApril 5, 2013

Matt Barkley speaking to the media at the NFL Combine
Matt Barkley speaking to the media at the NFL CombineBrian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Less than three weeks away till the NFL draft. College players around the country will earn a spot on their new professional team.

Every draft has players that make an impact on their team from a first-round starter to a surprising late-round sleeper. Some players get drafted in the first round and get paid a lot of money in their first contract, but don't make a positive impression on their team.

Some of these players turn out to be busts because their qualities don’t translate well on the next level. For example, linebacker Aaron Maybin was drafted with the No. 11 pick in the 2009 NFL draft, but he has only 36 career tackles with two teams in four years.

This April, there will be first-round draft picks that won’t be worth the high selection, but should be picked in a later round. Here are four college studs that are not worth the first-round pick:


Manti Te'o

Notre Dame's Manti Te'o has been one of the most polarized college football players in recent history. He led Notre Dame to the National Championship game because of how effective he was in the middle of the defense all season long.

His NFL combine numbers weren't the best of the linebackers, but he did do a good job with certain drills. He appears to be a late first-round pick, but shouldn't be taken that high. The reason why Te'o is not worth the first-round pick is because of his below-average height and lack of recovery speed.


Tavon Austin

Wide receivers are really lacking in this year's draft, which is why Tavon Austin will turn out to be a top-20 pick. Austin has incredible speed and does a good job of getting extra yards after the catch. But, there are a lot of weaknesses that will stand out if he's not paired with a talented quarterback.

His lack of size, average hands and poor route-running skills will not translate well on the next level. Austin isn't worth a first-round pick because of the question marks that he would leave with an NFL team.


Matt Barkley

What might be worse than the wide receiver class is the quarterback class. This year, Geno Smith and Matt Barkley lead the quarterback class. Both players have work to do to become elite quarterbacks. 

Last year’s quarterbacks, Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin, had teams salivating over them and they ended up exceeding expectations.

According to CBS Sports, Barkley is projected to be selected by the Buffalo Bills with the No. 8 pick. Barkley is not worth a first-round pick because he lacks ideal height, doesn't have an outstanding arm and makes poor decisions against defensive pressure.

Not to mention, he did play at USC, which is putting out below-average NFL quarterbacks.


Bjoern Werner

Bjoern Werner was able to do some impressive things over his time at Florida State. He turned into an excellent pass rusher and quality run stopper in the Seminoles defense. But, there are some parts of his game that scouts are questioning.

First, his technique has to improve, if he's going to be a quality defensive end on the next level. NFL officials have said that his stance when attacking the offensive line is a problem at times.

Also, injuries really affected him throughout his collegiate career and could turn into a problem in the NFL. Werner will be a high-risk, high-reward player in the first round.