Several big names made their decisions regarding the 2012 NFL draft this week. Let's take a look at some of them:
Landry Jones, QB, Oklahoma Returning to school
Jones entered the 2011 season as a surefire first-round pick, and probably still is, but a dreadful end to his season (zero TDs in his last three games against Iowa State, Baylor and Oklahoma State) may have convinced him that returning to Norman to solidify his spot in the top 10 of the 2013 draft was probably a smart move. Jones needs to prove to scouts that his late-season demise after losing star WR Ryan Broyles was a fluke, and his skittish pocket presence is a thing of the past. If he can do that, Jones should be the second best QB prospect after USC's Matt Barkley in 2013, and a high first-round pick.
Bernard Pierce, RB, Temple Entering the draft
David Wilson, RB, Virginia Tech Entering the draft
Montee Ball, RB, Wisconsin Returning to school
If you're a RB and have a chance to go in the first two rounds of the draft, you need to go. It's that simple. College coaches aren't going to take it easy on their workhorses to save them for the draft, and guys like Pierce, who have already had their share of physical woes, only have so many carries in their lifetime. Wilson and Pierce enter a 2012 draft light on senior RB talent and should be gone sometime before the end of the second round.
As far as Ball goes, I'm sure running behind those big boys on the Badgers' offensive line is fun, and you can take out that 5 million insurance policy, but you play the most physically punishing position with a lifespan of a gnat. Take the money and run (literally).
Alshon Jeffery, WR, South Carolina Entering the draft
Smart decision by Jeffery he's ready. The big (6-4, 229) wide receiver has the physical tools to make an impact immediately, and should be gone within the first 20 selections. I have him ranked as the second-best wide receiver in the draft behind Oklahoma State's Justin Blackmon, ahead of Notre Dame's Michael Floyd and Baylor's Kendall Wright. The Eagles, depending on what they do with DeSean Jackson, could be in a position to draft him at No. 15.
Luke Kuechly, LB, Boston College Entering the draft
This is the guy the Eagles should be interested in when drafting. The 2011 Bronko Nagurski Award winner as the nation's top defensive player could (and probably should) be the Eagles' pick if he's still on the board at 15.