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April 25, 2012

3T: Raiders in 2013 NFL Draft

In this week's Three Things, we look at three Red Raiders that could potentially hear their name called during next year's NFL Draft.

1. OT LaAdrian Waddle. Waddle, like the others on this list, is no sure-thing to be drafted next April, but he plays a key position and has enough of the tools necessary to make it on a team's draft board. The 6-foot-6, 318-pounder has 27 starts under his belt and was a near-unanimous All-Big 12 second-team selection at the end of the 2011 season.

I honestly expected a bit more from Waddle during the spring. He wasn't bad, but he could have been much better. That's a concern. I never felt that way about Manny Ramirez, Louis Vasquez or Brandon Carter when they were heading into their final season of eligibility.

2. WR Tyson Williams. Williams is another player that had a quiet spring -- at least relative to expectations -- but a lot of that could be attributed to how he was moved around a bit to compensate for injuries to Marcus Kennard and Eric Ward.

I have no idea what kind of 40-yard dash time that Williams can clock or how many receptions he'll log this fall, but I do know that NFL scouts were more interested in him last fall than any other player on Tech's roster. And Williams wasn't even eligible to play at the time. Despite his quiet spring, the assumption here is that those scouts were checking in on him for a reason.

3. WR Darrin Moore. You could make an argument for defensive lineman Leon Mackey here, but I shied away from him because it's harder to project how he will do working at tackle this season instead of end.

Moore led the country in receiving yards after Tech's first two games last season but caught just two passes over the next six weeks after injuring his leg against Nevada. As he got healthier, his production picked up; he caught 15 passes for 162 yards and three touchdowns in the Red Raiders' final two games.

You can argue (legitimately) that we still haven't seen a healthy Moore put up big numbers against a stout defense, but I think that has more to do with a lack of opportunity than ability.


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