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2011 NFL Draft: 5 Late-Round Draft Prospects Who Are Superstars in the Making

Alec DoppCorrespondent IDecember 13, 2016

2011 NFL Draft: 5 Late-Round Draft Prospects Who Are Superstars in the Making

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    FORT WORTH, TX - OCTOBER 16:  Wide receiver Jeremy Kerley #85 of the TCU Horned Frogs carries the ball against the BYU Cougars at Amon G. Carter Stadium on October 16, 2010 in Fort Worth, Texas.  TCU beat BYU 31-3.  (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)
    Tom Pennington/Getty Images

    As the 2011 NFL Draft progresses, which late-round draft prospects have the best shot at future NFL success?

    The 2011 NFL Draft may have all but reached its climax, but the real action has yet to begin.

    Over the course of NFL Draft history, only a select few of late-round prospects have gone on to become all-time greats.  

    Tom Brady, Joe Montana, Richard Dent and Shannon Sharpe are just a few examples successful late-rounds selections.  And by the time this year's draft is finished, we'll may add a few more to that list.

    Which prospects of the 2011 Draft class are on their way to "prime-time"?

    Here's a concise breakdown of five late-round prospects that have great shots at becoming superstars at the NFL level.

    Follow Alec Dopp on twitter: @doppler9000

Cecil Shorts III, WR Mount Union

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    Measurables: 6'0", 200 pounds

    Why he's set up for success

    Playing at Division III Mount Union won't get you much recognition, but Cecil Shorts makes up for the lack of appreciation with great speed and a knack for getting to the football.

    At the Combine, Shorts ran a 4.50 40-yard dash and registered 21 bench-press reps—one of the most impressive workouts of any wide-receiver in Indianapolis.

    Shorts is projected to be a late fifth-round pick, but I wouldn't be surprised if someone pulls the trigger on him before then.

Cortez Allen, CB Citadel

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    Measurables: 6'1", 197 pounds

    Why he's set up for success

    Although he played in just two games during his senior campaign with Citadel, Cortez Allen is a serious talent that most NFL teams are very unaware of.

    Running a 4.53 40-yard dash with 13 bench reps, Allen didn't have the Combine workout he wanted.  However what he lacks in workouts, he compensates for in on-field production.

    Allen was an absolute force for the Bulldogs over his three-year career, and translates well into the NFL.

Evan Royster, RB Penn State

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    STATE COLLEGE, PA - NOVEMBER 27: Running back Evan Royster #22 of the Penn State Nittany Lions carries the ball during a game against the Michigan State Spartans on November 27, 2010 at Beaver Stadium in State College, Pennsylvania. The Spartans won 28-22
    Hunter Martin/Getty Images

    Measurables: 6'0", 218 pounds

    Whys he's set up for success

    Playing for Joe Paterno's run-first offense is exactly what NFL teams like in a running-back transitioning to the NFL level, and Even Royster is a serious talent worth a look from many teams in the late-rounds.

    In four seasons, Royster amassed just under 4,000 yards rushing to go with 29 touchdowns for Penn State—making him one of the most accomplished backs of this year's class, without question.

    Royster boasts impressive speed, agility and frame to become a superstar for any team willing to take a chance on him.

Jeremy Kerley, WR TCU

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    PASADENA, CA - JANUARY 01:  Wide receiver Jeremy Kerley #85 of the TCU Horned Frogs looks on against the Wisconsin Badgers in the 97th Rose Bowl game on January 1, 2011 in Pasadena, California.  (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)
    Stephen Dunn/Getty Images

    Measurables: 5'9", 190 pounds

    Why he's set up for success

    Although scouts often question his ability to effectively transition to the next level, I believe TCU's accomplished wideout Jeremy Kerley is on his way to future success with one lucky NFL franchise.

    His undersized frame puts him out of consideration for an early-round pick, but Kerley's quickness and separation from defenders makes him a viable threat downfield and screen-patterns.

    Additionally, Kerley brings forth more than just solid receiving, as he's likely to become a punt/kickoff-returner upon entering the league.

Pat Devlin, QB Delaware

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    Measurables: 6'4", 220 pounds

    Why he's set up for success

    Its hard to pinpoint late-round quarterbacks as potential superstar talents down the road.  However, my hopes are high on Delaware's luminary signal-caller Pat Devlin.

    As most could imagine, Devlin's prototypical size makes him a prime prospect for quarterback-needy teams, despite the fact he is projected to be a fifth to sixth-round selection.

    Nevertheless, the build is there and the statistics are even more prevalent: throwing for over 4,000 yards with Delaware after transferring from Penn State after his sophomore season.

    Don't be surprised if his Joe Flacco-like physique is enough to make him a successful starter just a few years down the road.

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