2014 NFL Draft: Mike Evans' stock rises with Williams trade
By Derek Harper | The Sports Xchange/CBSSports.com
April 4, 2014
Is Tampa Bay eyeing Mike Evans with its pick at No. 7?
The biggest winner out of Friday's trade of wide receiver Mike Williams to the Buffalo Bills could ultimately prove to be Mike Evans.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers were aggressive in reshaping their roster under new general manager Jason Licht and head coach Lovie Smith, and were set to enter the 2014 NFL Draft with plenty of directions they could go with the No. 7 overall pick. In dealing Williams, however, the Bucs now have a clear need for a playmaking wide receiver opposite Vincent Jackson.
NFLDraftScoutcom's Rob Rang projects the Bucs to land Clemson's Sammy Watkins at No. 7, but there figures to be plenty of jockeying in front of Tampa Bay come draft day for the most dynamic wideout in this draft. Fellow analysis Dane Brugler projects Watkins to the Oakland Raiders two picks earlier, and a number of teams could be interested in leapfrogging the Bucs should Watkins still be on the board.
That could bring Evans into play with the seventh pick. At 6-feet-5 and 231 pounds, Evans would team with Jackson (6-5, 230) to give new starting quarterback Josh McCown the type of super-sized combo he excelled with Brandon Marshall and Alshon Jeffery in Chicago last season. Smith also helped bring Marshall and Jeffery to Chicago as head coach of the Bears.
Evans, the second-rated wide receiver and No. 13 overall prospect by NFLDraftScout.com, is a long-strider who has been compared to Jackson by NFLDraftScout.com since last year due to his combination of size, physicality and body control. Some scouts believe Evans helped "make" Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel, and the redshirt sophomore has increased his stock since the end of the season - highlighted by his 4.53-second 40-yard dash time he was credited with at the Scouting Combine.
There is little doubt the Bucs will target a receiver earlier in the Draft. Of the other six receivers they have on the current roster, only Louis Murphy has more than two years of NFL experience, and the sixth-year veteran caught only six passes for the New York Giants last season.
That said...the only WR I see as worth trading up for is Watkins, beyond that there are greater areas of need - & to me Hageman & Ealy look tempting at 15.
Pittsburgh Steelers 2014 NFL Draft Fact or Fiction
By Curt Popejoy , Featured Columnist April 10, 2014
Pittsburgh Could Trade Up for Texas A&M Wide Receiver Mike Evans: Fiction
Chalk this one up as pure speculation. But if the Steelers are really serious on drafting Texas A&M wide receiver Mike Evans, can they hope he is there at 15? Probably not. So, if Evans is their target, would they be willing to mortgage some of their picks to go up and get him?
It is a risky proposition on two fronts. First, for as talented as Evans is, he is still a raw prospect. Expectations for him must be tempered early on while he adjusts to an NFL-style offense. With multiple positions of need, is a trade-up prudent?
Second has to do with the position. Is a trade-up for any wide receiver in this class good business? Even with three compensatory picks, selections are at a premium for Pittsburgh. It is difficult to think about giving away picks to move up for Evans, when one of those traded selections could turn out to be a Pro Bowl player. This draft class is just too deep to go all knee-jerk for one player.
Curt Popejoy just has all the answers doesnt he.
Interested in all the big 10 prospects, but not evans lol
In a draft that is reportedly very deep in WRs I can't even begin to tell you how bad an idea it is to move up in the draft for a WR. That would tell me that the Steelers don't have any faith in their scouting department to find a good WR in the 2nd or 3rd round, ugh, I would hate a trade up for Evans or any player for that matter.
Are the Steelers interested in Mike Evans? Of course...
Should they trade up for Mike Evans? Probably not...Popejoy is correct in questioning the prudence of such an action...
Will they trade up? Who knows...