The second and third rounds of the NFL Draft are set to begin in less than two hours and all six Illinois prospects are still on the board. Most of the Fighting Illini are projected to go sometime during day three, but one mock draft has DE Michael Buchanan going as early as the third round.
Among all the Illinois prospects in this year’s draft, Buchanan should be and will be the first to go off the board. Everyone seems to have him going in the fourth round of the draft, but he could go earlier.
The only reason he could go earlier than the fourth round is because of the amount of lineman that we saw go in the first round on Thursday night. There were a total of seventeen offensive and defensive lineman drafted in the first round this year.
Tam Bradford of Chicago Now is one of the sports writers that has Buchanan going in the third round by Pete Carroll and the Seattle Seahawks with the 87th pick.
Seattle was one team that did not draft during the first round on Thursday night. Right now, they have two picks in the second and third rounds for day two.
Buchanan would be a good fit in Seattle, but I see him being drafted at 83rd overall by the New England Patriots (if he goes in the third round).
The Patriots traded back on Thursday by giving the Minnesota Vikings their first rounder for four picks later in the draft.
New England needs pass rushers and that is exactly what they will get if they draft Buchanan in the third round. Michael Buchanan has an excellent first step, can run the arc, and flashes the flexibility to turn the corner. The only thing he needs to do is bulk up and he should be able to do that at the next level.
There is so much up-side to Michael Buchanan and he would fit almost anywhere. However, it will be interesting to see if he gets nabbed in the third round or slips to day three on Saturday.
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