NFL Draft Rumors: Latest Buzz Around Draft's Biggest Names

Rob GoldbergFeatured ColumnistApril 23, 2013

MIAMI GARDENS, FL - JANUARY 04:  DeAndre Hopkins #6 of the Clemson Tigers runs for yards after the catch against the West Virginia Mountaineers during the Discover Orange Bowl at Sun Life Stadium on January 4, 2012 in Miami Gardens, Florida.  (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

It is tough to tell which NFL rumors are true at this late stage before the draft, but there is a lot of buzz currently circulating around the league.

Teams spend these final few days doing some last-minute scouting of players, as well as looking out for potential trades to move up or down.

While these all could be smoke-screens to throw off other front offices, look out for some of these player-to-team connections to end up being true later in the week.

Here is the latest information regarding some of the top names in the draft.


Ryan Nassib, QB, Syracuse

Since former Syracuse head coach Doug Marrone took the job as head coach of the Buffalo Bills, many have projected Ryan Nassib as the team's future quarterback.

Joe Buscaglia of WGR550 in Buffalo reported that the talented prospect still remains the favorite to be selected by the Bills, although Matt Barkley is still in play as well:

It makes sense for the head coach to grab a player he previously coached and is familiar with, although this is not always a good thing, according to ESPN's James Walker:

If Nassib does not pan out, it could lead to a quick end to Marrone's tenure in Buffalo. This risk factor could force the coach to lean toward Barkley instead.

Either way, it appears that the Bills are very likely to draft one of these two quarterbacks early on. 


Sheldon Richardson, DT, Missouri

As a talented defensive tackle who is solid against the pass and run, Sheldon Richardson is expected to be selected near the middle of the first round. This could force some teams drafting later to be more aggressive.

The Atlanta Falcons are one of those teams, according to Peter King of Sports Illustrated. He wrote, "I think, if the Falcons had their way, they would come out of the first round with Missouri defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson."

It would not be too surprising if Atlanta was to make a major trade on draft day. Jason Cole of Yahoo! reported that he expects the team to trade up from No. 30, although he thinks the target will be a cornerback.

When asked about making a move, Falcons general manager Thomas Dimitroff said (via Pat Yasinskas of ESPN):

We’ve been open about it. I think it’s very clear we’re open for big deals if they come across our table and we’re interested. We’re going to be active. Active can be (moving) up down or around. We’re continually looking to bolster the roster.

There are a bunch of talented players worth moving up for, but the question remains whether the Falcons can find a deal worth making.


DeAndre Hopkins, WR, Clemson

While the class of wide receivers might not have any can't-miss prospects that will be taken right off the bat, there are a number of talented players that will be selected before the end of Round 1.

Jason Cole of Yahoo! writes, "Wide receivers are going to be popular starting at roughly No. 16, where St. Louis is likely to take Tavon Austin or DeAndre Hopkins."

DeAndre Hopkins could possibly start looking for places to stay in St. Louis after he performed a secondary workout for the Rams on Monday, according to Aaron Wilson of

Clemson star wide receiver DeAndre "Nuk" Hopkins has a private workout today for St. Louis Rams coach Jeff Fisher, according to a league source. 

This workout will include other Rams' staffers, including offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer, wide receivers coach Ray Sherman and quarterbacks coach Frank Cignetti, and marks the second workout for the NFC West club in the past four days after working out for them on Friday.

The speedster is a solid downfield threat and has enough size to be successful on shorter routes as well. Considering the Rams glaring need at wideout, this would be a solid fit for both parties.