I love the pace of the news with Sam Beal’s football future right now. It was early June when the public found out about his academic standing with the school and football program. Few weeks later, he had his Pro Day. And tomorrow, he finds out which NFL team likes him enough to take him in the supplemental draft. Obviously I’m whining here, but the gaps between the end of football season and the NFL Draft is incredibly obnoxious. So in the case of Beal, I’m happy with this quick process. (It also helps when there are only a handful of supplemental draft-eligible players versus 300-400 for the regular draft.)
The NFL Supplemental Draft is tomorrow at 1 p.m. This is hyperbole, but teams are basically going to handle this in a chatroom because it’s not going to last that long anyways. Teams like the Bills, Browns and Chiefs have been mentioned as possible candidates to draft Beal.
In a recent post on ESPN, one scout said Beal could end up being a starting corner on whichever team drafts him:
He is a big (6-foot-1) corner who ran a 4.47 in the 40-yard dash during a recent workout and has demonstrated high-end ability to cover on the outside. “I think he’s going to be a starter within three years for whatever team drafts him,” [Steve] Muench said, “and a really good starter at that. You have someone with that frame and those skills, and that’s what teams look for.”
Depending on who you ask, you’ll get varying opinions on the strength of cornerback position on the current roster. Outside of Kendall Fuller, there isn’t consensus confidence in the rest of the group. Cornerback was considered one of the biggest needs heading into April. It was surprising to a majority of the fanbase that the position wasn’t addressed until Tremon Smith was selected in the sixth round. There are few opportunities to acquire a player of Beal’s caliber this late into the offseason.
… The Arrowhead Pride team gave Beal an early third-round grade and he seems like the kind of player that makes sense in Kansas City.
#DraftmasInJuly Sam Beal needs to put a little weight on and develop consistency with his technique, but the length, fluid hips and feet make him an intriguing corner prospect. pic.twitter.com/iOjqD2Lh3N
— Kent Swanson (@kent_swanson) July 7, 2018
There is the belief that Sam Beal would have been a first or second round pick in the 2019 NFL Draft. He could still go as high as the second round of the supplemental draft, but many draft experts see him going in Round 3. This would be a great value pick for the Bills or any team to get him at this point in the supplemental draft.
NFL.com’s Gil Brandt is one of many to say Beal’s a third-round prospect for this draft.
One team told me they viewed Beal as 2nd-round pick had he been in 2018 draft, but that round likely to be lower in sup draft. Keep eye on teams with extra picks in Rounds 3-4 next year, including Browns (Round 3) and Bills (4). https://t.co/9OOBymQvDE
— Gil Brandt (@Gil_Brandt) June 28, 2018
The Akron Beacon Journal took a perspective focused on the Browns, who could take Beal if GM John Dorsey is feeling ‘aggressive’ enough:
So if Dorsey wants Beal, he could place a third-round bid on him with the luxury of still owning the Patriots’ pick in the same round next spring.
But Brugler said he thinks a team might be willing to go the extra mile for Beal by using a second-round selection.
… “As a rookie, I don’t think he’s going to necessarily have a huge influence on the win-loss record. But he’s a guy that you’d love to bring into your program, coach him up, bring him along, and you could have a starting cornerback on your hands.”
Beal didn’t meet academic credit requirements to maintain eligibility for next season, leading him to enter the supplemental draft.
“I don’t think there’s anything that’s really going to make him toxic as a prospect where some of these other prospects these teams might shy away from for certain [off-field] things,” Brugler said. “With him, I think it’s just more of a maturity thing. You’re going to have to be hard on him. He’s going to have to accept hard coaching, and it’s going to be something that he’s going to have to grow up quickly.”
Beal cut his teeth by practicing against former Western Michigan wide receiver Corey Davis, whom the Tennessee Titans drafted fifth overall last year.
Others to watch in the draft: Adonis Alexander (cornerback, Virginia Tech), Brandon Bryant (safety, Mississippi State), Bright Ugwoegbu (linebacker, Oregon State) and Marty Carter (running back, Grand Valley State).