Lost between the Manziels and the Bortleses and the Mettenbergers and Murrays and forgotten amid the perceived free fall of Teddy Bridgewater is Alabama quarterback A.J. McCarron.
It’s unclear where McCarron will be taken; he reportedly skipped the Senior Bowl because McCarron believed he already was poised to be a top-20 pick. While McCarron explained that he passed on the Senior Bowl due to injury, he apparently thinks he could end up in the top 20, after all.
While gliding through the ESPN car wash on Monday, McCarron made clear his belief that he won’t be sliding out of round one.
He said that, of his pre-draft visits, “pretty much everyone so far” said he has a first-round grade.
“They felt like I could go anywhere from 16-35,” McCarron said, via AL.com. “I believe that, too. At the same time, I don’t have my hopes set on anything. Whatever happens, happens. It’s a blessing for me to even be in this situation.”
If McCarron goes that high (and the Cowboys hold the 16th pick), it will defy the projections of pretty much everyone who is trying to project who will be taken in the first 35 picks. Still, McCarron realizes that it’s impossible to know what any given team will do with any given pick.
“It’s not like the G.M.s are calling these guys and telling them, ‘Hey, we’re going to draft this guy at this number so go ahead and put that out there,'” McCarron said. “One thing I’ve learned about this whole process, it’s nothing but a big secret.
“A lot of times teams will bring in a guy just to bluff another team and make it seem like toward the media that they like this guy and really they have no interest at all in drafting him.”
He’s right, but if McCarron were destined to be among the first 35 players taken, there would be far more buzz about him than there currently is.
Ultimately, his stock will hinge on how many teams take quarterbacks. If one or more runs happen in the first round, his name will move higher on the stack for teams looking to fill needs that have yet to be addressed.