Last year, the Cleveland Browns passed on Teddy Bridgewater. This year, they had the chance to draft DeVante Parker. They passed on him as well. While nearly all Louisville fans breathed a sigh of relief (I say nearly because I have family that are Browns fans…sorry!), apparently the Parker family was also relieved.
Petrino photo: Tim Haag/CardinalSportsZone.com Strong photo: livestream7.com
The Louisville Cardinals had a school record 10 players selected in this past weekend’s NFL Draft. They had the second most of any team, behind Florida State’s 11 picks. Regardless, that looks great for the program. But who do you think should get the most credit? The guy who coached them last season? Or the guy who brought most of those guys to UofL and developed them?
Just for the record, when I refer to Bobby Petrino or Charlie Strong in this, it obviously includes their whole staff as well. Clearly guys like Todd Grantham and Clint Hurtt have a lot to do with the success of those head coaches, but for the sake of time, I will just refer to Petrino and Strong.
Let’s take a look at the 10 draft picks and try to figure out who is most responsible for them getting drafted…
It was a very eventful weekend for the city of Louisville as well as the University of Louisville football program. If you are like me, you were focused on the Derby festivities, but kept an eye on the NFL Draft at least. The Kentucky Derby is what this city is known for, and I was lucky enough to have tickets, so of course that was where my attention was. But I also get mobile alerts, and somehow my phone was working at Churchill Downs, so I was aware when former Louisville players were getting drafted, which was a plus.
In all, a school record 10 players from UofL were drafted. Florida State had the most players with 11. On top of those 10 for the Cards, four (so far) have also signed free agent deals and will have a chance to make a team.
Here is just a quick rundown of where the players were selected.
DeVante Parker was selected 14th overall by the Miami Dolphins on Thursday night. It certainly sounds like Louisville fans are generally happy for that spot with Parker. If it couldn’t be the Vikings, at least it wasn’t the Browns. That is the feeling I got from social media, and rightfully so.
We already know about DeVante and how good he is. I decided to check in on a couple of media outlets from down in Florida to see what they thought of him. Most of it is quotes from Dolphins management, but also some opinion thrown in there.
DeVante Parker has been selected by the Miami Dolphins with the 14th overall pick in the 2015 NFL Draft.
Despite missing the first 7 games of his senior year, Parker finished his career at UofL with 33 touchdowns, tied for 1st all-time with Ibn Green. He finished 4th all-time with 2,775 receiving yards and 156 receptions, which is 8th all-time. For more of his stats in the UofL record books, check out this post.
The 2015 NFL Draft begins Thursday night at 8:00 p.m. ET on ESPN. It has turned into a three-day extravaganza recently and Thursday will only bring you the first round of the draft. The Louisville Cardinals could see a record number of players drafted this year, but all of that will take place over the course of three days. Tonight’s only real interest for Louisville fans will be finding out where wide receiver DeVante Parker gets drafted.
One of the greatest to ever wear a UofL uniform. The 2015 NFL Draft begins on Thursday April 30.
The Louisville Cardinals had their football pro day on Wednesday inside the Trager Center, and there were representatives in attendance from all 32 NFL teams. There were three head coaches there: New England’s Bill Belichick, Pittsburgh’s Mike Tomlin, and Cincinnati’s Marvin Lewis. The cool thing about that to me is that they easily could have been somewhere else since both Alabama and Southern California also had their pro days on Wednesday. I am sure they sent team personnel to those also, but to have any head coaches here is a pretty big deal.
Over the last few days, there have been plenty of posts on the NFL Combine with information on former Louisville players and how they performed. That is what happens when you send 11 players up to Indianapolis for the event. Here are links to all of the posts from CSZ regarding the NFL combine…
I hadn’t seen this video yet. Pretty awesome. Amazes me that anyone ever covered him one on one, but thanks for that.
A few days ago, I posted DeVante Parker’s results from the NFL Combine in the tests he participated in. This one is a little different. This will show his measurements and the analysis on him from NFL.com. It also gives his grade, and what that number means as a projection for him as a pro.
Arm Length: 33 1/4″
Weight: 209 lbs
Hands: 9 1/4″
Analysis from NFL.com
Former Louisville wide receiver DeVante Parker participated in the NFL Combine on Saturday in Indianapolis. These are his results from the day. The consensus seems to be that Parker is a top 3 wide receiver along with Amari Cooper (Alabama) and Kevin White (West Virginia). So I will tell you where Parker’s numbers ranked overall among the receivers, and alongside those other two wideouts.
I started to write a little intro for this, but there is no reason to. Let’s get right to it. The NFL Combine is starting, and we know DeVante Parker should be drafted early. The Minnesota Vikings have the 11th overall pick. Teddy Bridgewater is their quarterback. The buzz with Louisville fans is the thought of the Vikings taking Parker and those two reuniting.
At the combine on Thursday, Parker said “That would be really good to reunite with (Bridgewater). We’ve got a good connection. That would be a good thing.” (according to blog.twincities.com)
More from the article:
The ACC Digital Network had JC Shurburtt on to talk about Louisville’s recruiting class. Shurburtt is the National Recruiting Director for 247 Sports.
In the video, he says that he “definitely sees a replacement” for Lorenzo Mauldin, talks about who can possibly replace DeVante Parker, and talks about Traveon Samuel.
The following comes from Andrea Adelson, who covers the ACC for ESPN.com. She recently posted an article wrapping up the first season in the ACC for the Cards. It may not have ended how we wanted it to, but I agree that overall, it was a successful first season in our new league.
There is only one way to describe the story of Louisville’s first season in the ACC:
Especially when you consider what the Cardinals had to deal with throughout 2014. Forget about the new staff and schemes. Louisville had to go without its best player for seven games; played three different quarterbacks; and faced perhaps the toughest schedule in school history.
We have just seen a college career come to an end that we won’t soon forget. There are surely going to be some good wide receivers come in and play for UofL over the next several years. And the best ones will undoubtedly be compared to DeVante Parker. He has set a bar that will be nearly impossible to reach. The combination of his talent along with him being a hometown kid just make him one of the biggest fan favorites to ever come through the UofL football program.
Although he missed the first 7 games of his senior season, Parker still climbed to (or near) the top of many different categories in the UofL history books. So there will always be that “what if” factor with Parker’s numbers, especially because 6 of those first 7 games were said to be the “easier” part of the 2014 schedule. No telling what kind of numbers he would have put up against teams like Murray State, Syracuse, and Miami (again).
Here are where his final numbers rank in some of the wide receiver categories in UofL history…
Highly touted wide receiver prospect Dahu Green tweeted earlier that he has opened up his recruitment, but will still consider Louisville.
As Reggie Bonnafon was being attended to early in the 2nd quarter of Saturday’s Governor’s Cup game between Louisville and Kentucky, reality started to set it: we were going to have to turn to 3rd stringer Kyle Bolin. No big deal, right? Just down 13-0 to Kentucky, who has all kinds of momentum, and Bolin entering the game completing 4-7 passes for 35 yards in his career. No panic at all in Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium. Now be serious, you know you were worried.
I love great stories in sports. Maybe “Rudy” was still fresh in my head after having watched it last Saturday before the Notre Dame game. So immediately, I turn to my buddy I go to games with, Chris Tingley, and say “Well, he IS from Lexington.” How sweet would it be for a kid from Lexington to bring the Cards back in this game against Kentucky? The Wildcats didn’t offer Bolin a scholarship until well after he was committed to Louisville. They let him get away, and on Saturday it would come back on them.
Everytime I update this post, I can’t help but to think “what if?” DeVante missed the first 7 games this season but has still managed to climb up the charts on these records. It has been nothing but a treat to be able to watch Parker these last 4 years. We have 1 last game to enjoy him in a Louisville uniform.
Parker did whatever he wanted on Saturday against Kentucky, catching 6 passes for 180 yards and 3 touchdowns.
1. 299 Arnold Jackson, 1997-00
2. 217 Ibn Green, 1996-99