Breaking Down Each Kansas State Wildcat Taken in 2013 NFL Draft
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Three players from Kansas State, the 2012 Big 12 champions, were taken in last weekend's NFL draft. Another six players were signed to undrafted free agent contracts.
Linebacker Arthur Brown was the first Wildcat taken in the draft when the Baltimore Ravens scooped him up in the second round.
Wide receiver Chris Harper followed Brown in the fourth round when the Seattle Seahawks selected him, then fullback Braden Wilson rounded out the Wildcats' draft selections when the Kansas City Chiefs picked him in the sixth round.
Quarterback Collin Klein, linebacker Justin Tuggle, punter Ryan Doerr, running back Angelo Pease, tight end Travis Tannahill and defensive back Nigel Malone were then picked up by teams after the draft's conclusion.
All of these players could make impacts on their respective teams. They certainly know how to win, as this group won 21 games over the past two seasons.
Arthur Brown, Baltimore Ravens
Arthur Brown was the Wildcats' anchor on defense.
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Drafted: Second Round, 56th overall
Linebacker Arthur Brown became the highest draft pick for the Wildcats since 2009, when QB Josh Freeman was selected 17th overall.
Brown is a terrific linebacker, and he could end up being the heir to the throne that Ray Lewis left vacant with his retirement.
Last season, Brown had 100 tackles and also two big interceptions. His first pick came against Geno Smith, which was the first time Smith had been intercepted up to that point in the season. His second interception came against Texas Tech, and he took it back to the house.
In addition to the raw talent that Brown has, he has a knack for making big plays when they're needed. In 2011, with the Wildcats trailing in a close game against Baylor, he picked off Robert Griffin III, the first time any player in the country had done so that season.
That interception set up a game-winning field goal for the Wildcats.
Brown is a bit undersized for an NFL linebacker, but so was Lewis when he was drafted.
According to Mike Mayock of NFL.com, Brown is a versatile player who is good in pass coverage and has great instincts.
In the end, Brown was a terrific second-round pickup for the Ravens. He'll have a chance to start right out of the gate.
Chris Harper, Seattle Seahawks
Chris Harper was Collin Klein's favorite target.
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Drafted: Fourth Round, 123rd overall
One of the more underrated prospects in the draft, wide receiver Chris Harper will be a terrific addition to the Seattle Seahawks.
The Seahawks are certainly trying to put talent around their newfound star quarterback, Russell Wilson. Drafting Harper fits into that goal, and he is certainly a steal in the fourth round.
At Kansas State last year, Harper totaled 58 grabs for 857 yards in an extremely run-heavy offense.
The stats certainly back up his talent, but it's how Harper made a lot of his catches during the season that was most impressive.
Harper often tip-toed the sideline to make hard catches and also made mid-route adjustments to give Collin Klein an easier throw. He also made a lot of catches with defenders draped on him.
The Wildcat receiver also has decent size at receiver, standing at 6'1" and 229 pounds. He is also incredibly strong, which was proven at the combine when he had the third-most reps in the bench press among wide receivers.
Wilson loves to scramble before getting rid of the ball, much like Klein did with the Wildcats. So Harper should transition smoothly into the Seahawks system.
Braden Wilson, Kansas City Chiefs
Braden Wilson is a strong, athletic fullback.
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Drafted: Sixth Round, 204th overall
Braden Wilson was wildly underrated during his time at Kansas State. Nobody gave him enough credit for the work he did on the offensive side of the ball.
He was the lead blocker for Collin Klein and John Hubert in a run-oriented offense that loved to eat the clock up. And the Wildcats made a living off doing that last season en route to their Big 12 title.
Any time Klein or Hubert broke off for a big run, there's a good chance that it was a block by Wilson that sprung him.
The Kansas City Chiefs absolutely found a gem in the sixth round by drafting Wilson. The Chiefs don't have a quality bruiser in the backfield to complement Jamaal Charles.
While Charles is one of the best running backs in the league, he uses his speed to get to the outside and doesn't like going in between the tackles.
Wilson can help Charles and the Chiefs add that dimension to its running attack, which was already one of the best in the NFL last season.
In short-yardage situations, the Chiefs can either hand the ball off to Wilson himself or allow the fullback to lead the way for Charles.
In addition to bringing an added element to the Chiefs offense, which struggled mightily overall last year, Wilson is a huge physical presence at 6'3" and 251 pounds.
The Chiefs only scored touchdowns on 27 percent of its trips to the red zone last year. A lot of that had to do with the team's inability to pick up first downs in short-yardage downs.
Wilson could be the fix to that problem.
Undrafted Free Agents
The Wildcats' best player last year went undrafted.
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QB Collin Klein, Houston Texans
Last year, Klein was undoubtedly the Wildcats' best player and finished third in the Heisman Trophy voting.
All of his accolades didn't transfer into quality draft stock, though, as his questionable throwing mechanics kept him from being drafted.
Klein ended up signing a UFA contract with the Houston Texans.
The Texans signed Klein as a quarterback, not a tight end or wide receiver, according to John McClain of the Houston Chronicle. Whether Klein makes it to training camp as a QB remains up in the air.
But for the time being, Klein is an NFL quarterback. And he certainly deserves that after being one of the nation's best players in college over the past two seasons.
LB Justin Tuggle, Houston Texans
Tuggle, who was part of the linebacking corps that included Arthur Brown, will join Klein in Houston as another UFA.
Tuggle wasn't overly impressive at Kansas State, but he wasn't bad, either. He played a key role in one of the best linebacker groups in the nation.
At 6'3" and 237 pounds, Tuggle certainly has the build of an NFL linebacker. He'll be granted a fair shot at making the Texans roster.
P Ryan Doerr, Denver Broncos
Whenever the Wildcats' offense stalled out last season, Doerr could be relied on to flip the field position and give his defense a more favorable situation.
Doerr was one of the best punters in the country last year, and was very underrated for his efforts.
It's unlikely that he'll unseat Britton Colquitt, who signed his free agent tender with the Broncos, from the starting job. But you never know.
RB Angelo Pease, Green Bay Packers
Pease was the third option in the running attack behind Klein and John Hubert last season.
His stats weren't impressive by any means, but he was still a quality back for the Wildcats. He had an impressive pro day, though, and he'll certainly be given a look by the Packers, who are one of the best teams in the league at developing rookies.
TE Travis Tannahill, Cleveland Browns
Tannahill was part of an overhaul of 16 UFA's that the Browns signed. And he may be the best of them all.
Last season, Tannahill was a consistent target in the passing game for Klein and was also an excellent blocker.
At 6'3" and 253 pounds, he's got good size for a tight end in the pros. Tannahill could end up being possibly the best of the UFA's that the Wildcats produced this year.
CB Nigel Malone, Indianapolis Colts
Malone was one of the best defensive backs in the Big 12 over the past two years.
During his time as a Wildcat, Malone totalled 12 interceptions and shut down some of the best receivers in a pass-friendly league.
But his size is what did him in when it came to being drafted. Malone is simply too small at 5'10" and 180 pounds.
However, Malone is a driven player who is extremely competitive. He could be a dark horse to make the Colts' final roster.