Indiana has had a player selected in the NFL Draft every year since 2014, but fans will likely have to wait a couple days to see if the streak continues.
Three Hoosiers have the potential to be selected on day three of the draft, with linebacker Micah McFadden having the highest probability of hearing his name called.
McFadden is projected as a sixth or seventh rounder according to NFL.com. NFL analyst Lance Zierlein likes McFadden’s ability to read the defense and generate tackles for loss, but had concerns about his size and play against the top tier teams in the Big Ten:
“Undersized inside linebacker with adequate diagnose quickness and downhill trigger,” Zierlein wrote. “His passivity and indecisiveness against Iowa and Ohio State, in particular, seemed out of place relative to the rest of his tape. He’s very average in the athleticism and speed departments but is well-prepared and exploits soft spots in blocking schemes to make impact tackles behind the line of scrimmage. He’s unable to challenge blocks and constrict gaps as a thumper, but he’s tough. McFadden has Day 3 value as a backup inside linebacker with core special teams potential.”
According to ESPN, McFadden is the 20th best inside linebacker, and 210th best overall player.
The 6-foot-1 and 240 pound Tampa product could make a roster as a back-up linebacker and/or special teams contributor.
McFadden finished his career at IU with 216 tackles, 149 solo, 14 sacks (94 yards), 37 for loss (169 yards), four interceptions, three forced fumbles, one fumble recovery, and four pass breakups. His 37 TFLs share sixth in program history.
Wide receiver Ty Fryfogle projects anywhere from round six to a priority free agent as teams grapple with the disparity between his 2020 and 2021 seasons. Zierlein likes Fryfogle’s size and strength, but questions his ability to get separation:
“Fryfogle simply didn’t play with the same determination and focus in 2021 that he displayed in 2020,” Zierlein wrote. “He blends size and speed and uses his frame effectively in tight quarters but failed to secure throws at the same success rate as his previous two seasons. A high percentage of his career targets have been contested, so he needs to play faster and with more focused routes in order to improve his separation and prove he can uncover. He has late-round value and some upside if he can call back his 2020 form.”
According to ESPN, Fryfogle is the 37th best wide receiver and the No. 323 overall player in the draft.
Fryfogle finished his career sixth on Indiana’s career lists in receptions (158) and yardage (2,231), and tied for 10th in receiving touchdowns (10) in 53 games (33 starts). He was third-team All-American and Big Ten Receiver of the Year in 2020.
Tight end Peyton Hendershot projects from round seven to priority free agent. Zeirlein likes Hendershot’s athleticism and footwork among other things, but has concerns about his speed and blocking ability.
“Former basketball standout with footwork and athleticism for more complex route-running on the first two levels,” Zierlein wrote. “Hendershot has played between 240 and 265 pounds, so finding the proper weight for his usage could be critical. He plays with a competitive demeanor as both a receiver and blocker. He will likely be viewed as an “F” tight end with a greater focus on his pass-catching and run-after-catch talent. While he has enough talent to compete for a roster spot, his 2020 arrest will need to be vetted by teams evaluating him for the draft.”
According to ESPN, Hendershot is the 15th best tight end, and the No. 272 player overall.
Hendershot finished his career as the Hoosiers tight ends receptions (136) and yardage (1,479) leader. The three-time All-Big Ten selection finished second with 14 touchdowns.
The first round of the 2022 NFL Draft starts Thursday, April 28th at 8pm ET on NFL Network. The Draft continues with rounds 2-3 Friday, April 29th at 7pm ET and rounds 4-7 Saturday, April 30th at 12pm ET.
IU DRAFT PICKS SINCE 2014:
- 2021, Round 5, Johnson, Jamar, S, Denver
- 2020, Round 6, Stepaniak, Simon, G, Green Bay
- 2019, Round 4, Martin, Wes, G, Washington
- 2018, Round 4, Thomas, Ian, TE, Carolina
- 2018, Round 6, Covington, Chris, LB, Dallas
- 2017, Round 3, Feeney, Dan, G, L.A. Chargers
- 2016, Round 2, Spriggs, Jason, T, Green Bay
- 2016, Round 5, Howard, Jordan, RB, Chicago
- 2016, Round 6, Sudfeld, Nate, QB, Washington
- 2015, Round 3, Coleman, Tevin, RB, Atlanta
- 2014, Round 2, Latimer, Cody, WR, Denver
- 2014, Round 7, Bolser, Ted, TE, Washington
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