With news coming so fast and furiously out of Columbus about the new coaching staff, I wanted to let the dust settle a little bit before offering up any commentary about the players who have decided to declare for the 2019 NFL Draft.
Before I say anything further, I want to express my sincere best wishes to each of these young men, and offer my thanks as an Ohio State fan for all that they contributed to the football program during their time in Columbus.
While I certainly understand Ohio State fans hoping that players stay, I also believe that each of these young men have made personal decisions that they believe are in their respective future best interests. As former Ohio State head coach John Cooper used to say, “You want to gamble, but you’re gambling with my chips.”
I am of the thought that these young men have all received information about their draft status and made the appropriate decisions accordingly.
Below are the three different categories I have assigned to each of these early NFL Draft decisions…
1. Expected Departures ~ Nick Bosa, Mike Weber, Dre’Mont Jones, Dwayne Haskins. Some of these were easier than others, as Bosa, Weber, and Jones made their intentions well-known either during the season (Bosa), or prior to the 2019 Rose Bowl (Weber, Jones).
It was not a surprise that Haskins declared for the 2019 NFL Draft, as his strong season has him well-positioned to become the first Ohio State quarterback since 1982 (Art Schlichter) to be a first-round selection.
Personally, I am excited to see how Haskins performs at the upcoming NFL Combine, as that is the type of venue that Haskins can put on a show. If things go as planned, he should have teams murmuring about having to move up into the top of the first round to have a chance at selecting him.
2. Unexpected Departure ~ Michael Jordan. This is not meant as a slam on Jordan, but more of a surprise that he declared. While Jordan was a three-year starter on the offensive line, with two seasons at guard and one at center, he seemed to fall into that expectation of coming back to Ohio State as a senior. Perhaps Jordan received a high draft grade evaluation from the NFL?
3. Unknown ~ Kendall Sheffield. It is not that Sheffield should or should not have declared for the 2019 NFL Draft. Quite simply, Sheffield never made any type of official declaration about his NFL decision. It was only because of a tweet from EXOS Sports that listed Sheffield as one of the athletes training with them that Ohio State fans learned of Sheffield’s decision to go to the NFL.
— EXOS Sports (@EXOSsports) January 15, 2019
Sheffield certainly played one of his best games in the 2019 Rose Bowl. Here is to hoping that his 2019 NFL Draft preparations go well and that he is selected high during the draft.