Ten Buckeyes have filed paperwork to see where they would be drafted -- should they choose to enter.
Is Cameron Heyward coming out? That's the BIG question.
Underclassmen can declare early for the draft but the NFL has a system in place that allows them to submit their names and be given the opinion of the NFL's Collegiate Advisory Committee, a group of NFL experts on draft projection, which informs the player where they would go if they declare.
I won't attempt to re-trace the evolution of the CAC -- because I don't know it -- but what's important for us is that Cameron Heyward, a stellar DE34 who's actually deserving of our (Chicago's) high pick, might come out. Of course, he might stay in school, too, since players often do that after seeking the CAC's evaluation. And he said that he would stay in previous comments to the media, but many players say that and enter anyways. It seems to be the thing to do -- talk about your teammates and how much you want to come back regardless of what everyone else says and then declare anyways.
Heyward will be given a first round grade (IMO and others'), despite what it says on draftnik sites, which are often not up-to-date at this point. It's possible he'll come in slightly lower, such as a 1-2 (late 1st, early 2nd), but he's going to be getting very good news from the CAC. It's only a question of how good, since he could propel himself into the top few picks in 2011 if he decides to wait one more year, and the lure of an even higher salary might reinforce his decision to wait.
All we can say at this point is that "we'll see." January 15 is the deadline for declaring for draft. It may take a couple weeks for the CAC to perform its draft evaluation but we'll know fairly soon, and Heyward will be asked repeatedly until the question is settled on Jan. 15.
I know what I want for Christmas -- a dominant DE34 named Cameron Heyward in a Broncos uniform come April. And I'm willing to wait until then, do you hear me Santa?