NFL Draft: Three Pro Prospects To Watch For From Small-Schools | GMTM
Gmtm Logo
SIGN UP
Gmtm Logo

NFL Draft: Three Pro Prospects To Watch For From Small-Schools

ByBryan Armetta

Published on Wed Apr 27 2022

|

2 min read

NFL Draft: Three Pro Prospects To Watch For From Small-Schools

Defining the term "small-school sleeper" can be difficult. Is it a future Hall of Famer like Jerry Rice, taken in the first round of the 1985 NFL Draft? Is it a late-round gem like Tony Romo, who went undrafted out of Eastern Illinois in 2005? It all depends on how small the school is and how slept on the player is.

The players on this list might seem obscure to the casual football fan, but it's not crazy to think that they can become household names in a couple of years.

While the flashy first round stars will get all the fanfare on Thursday night, here are some late-round selections that can make a major impact on their new teams.

Jalen Tolbert - WR, South Alabama

The Sun Belt Conference's offensive player of the year in 2021, Tolbert has earned his reputation as an explosive playmaker coming into this draft. He put up nearly 1,500 yards receiving in just 12 contests last year (122.8 yards per game), carrying an otherwise mediocre South Alabama offense.

Tolbert proved he could compete with quality cornerbacks when he had seven catches for 143 yards and a touchdown against Tennessee. For teams in need of a tall (6'3"), speedy (4.49 40-time at the combine), receiver with smooth route-running skills, Tolbert should be on their radar in rounds two and three.

Cole Strange - OL, Chattanooga

In a deep draft for offensive linemen, it's easy for prospects like Strange to get lost in the shuffle. However, he possesses many of the skills NFL teams want on their 0-line: aggressiveness, tenacity, and a burst that can create immediate holes in the run game.

A 44-game starter at Chattanooga, Strange is capable of lining up at center and tackle, although he projects as a guard next season. A fast-riser on most draft boards, Strange's versatility might be enough to convince a team to take a shot on him in the third round.

Troy Andersen - LB, Montana State

Few players in the draft have had a more interesting collegiate career than Troy Andersen. During his four seasons with Montana State, Andersen was asked to play quarterback and running back before filling in at middle linebacker his senior year.

At 6'3 and 243 pounds, with plenty of speed and a high motor, defensive coordinators are likely drooling at the potential to line the rookie up from anywhere on the field. There's plenty that will need to be fixed up in training camp, but Andersen is talented enough to carve out a solid role for himself from day one. Look for a front office to select him as early as Round 2.


Are you an Athlete?

Create a free profile to access the largest network specifically designed to connect athletes to opportunities. Get started.

RELATED ARTICLES
2022 NFL Draft: Three Instant-Impact Players Taken Outside The First Round

2022 NFL Draft: Three Instant-Impact Players Taken Outside The First Round

Every year, we hear all about the "can't-miss" prospects in the NFL Draft, those highly touted rookies from powerhouse programs or with a trophy room full of collegiate accolades. Yet every year the...

ByBryan Armetta | Fri Apr 22 2022
Super Bowl LVI: Three Small School Stars Who Could Make a Difference

Super Bowl LVI: Three Small School Stars Who Could Make a Difference

On February 13th, the Cincinnati Bengals and Los Angeles Rams will meet with everything on the line in Super Bowl LVI. In a battle headlined by former number 57th Super Bowl is sure to be quite the...

ByBryan Armetta | Sun Feb 13 2022
What CFB Programs Are Developing The Most NFL Talent At Each Position

What CFB Programs Are Developing The Most NFL Talent At Each Position

More than most sports, the fundamentals of Football change greatly depending on which position you play. This means that coaching systems need to be formed for every different type of player....

ByAria Modirmassihai | Mon May 02 2022
NXGN Dallas Recap: Four Recruits From Texas and Oklahoma Who Impressed Us

NXGN Dallas Recap: Four Recruits From Texas and Oklahoma Who Impressed Us

The offseason camp circuit is in full swing and top high school football talent is traveling around their region and beyond to gain exposure and attention from scouts. One of the biggest camp...

ByScotty Jenkins | Fri Apr 22 2022
Can Cincinnati's Historic Season Continue in the NFL Draft?

Can Cincinnati's Historic Season Continue in the NFL Draft?

Undefeated regular season. 12-1 record. First-ever non-Power 5 playoff participant. Multiple first-round picks? Cincinnati enjoyed a magical 2021 season, easily the best in program history. However,...

ByBryan Armetta | Wed Apr 20 2022