It’s crazy to think the 2017 NFL draft is now less than two weeks away. From April 27-29, the three-day extravaganza will take place in the City of Brotherly Love, Philadelphia.
Among the 22 players that will attend the draft is former Wisconsin left tackle Ryan Ramczyk.
The consensus first-team All-American and All-Big Ten selection could hear his name called on the first night, though opinions vary. Fox Sports’ Dieter Kurtenbach projected the Stevens Point, Wis., native to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at No. 19 on Thursday, while SB Nation’s Dan Kadar has him going to the Denver Broncos at No. 20 in his latest mock. Bleacher Report’s Matt Miller has Ramczyk at No. 31 to the Atlanta Falcons.
In other draft news, Bleacher Report’s Mike Freeman reported the Detroit Lions "want" former Badgers outside linebacker T.J. Watt, but their first-round draft pick is at No. 21. Would that be too high to take the Pewaukee, Wis., native and the youngest of the Watt clan?
According to NFL.com’s Path to the Draft features, Watt has scheduled workouts with many organizations. That includes the Miami Dolphins, New Orleans Saints, and San Francisco 49ers this week, and then next week with the Denver Broncos.
The potential of the former tight end turned outside linebacker should be intriguing to many organizations. If Watt falls to the home-state Green Bay Packers, general manager Ted Thompson will have quite the interesting decision with Watt’s position being an area of need. Packer Plus’s Rob Reischel listed him as a potential pick earlier this week.
Miller also has Watt going to Green Bay in his latest mock.
Check out B5Q over the coming two weeks for scouting reports from Owen Riese, along with the latest news and notes leading up to the big weekend.
Wheelwright heading back to Lambeau
B5Q reported on Thursday afternoon that former Wisconsin wide receiver Robert Wheelwright, who had himself a great Pro Day in March, will visit the Green Bay Packers April 18 and 19. Saturday Tradition’s Connor O’Gara also reported the visit.
Wheelwright was not invited to the NFL Scouting Combine, but on March 15 in front of representatives from all 32 NFL teams, the Columbus, Ohio, native ran a 4.54-second 40-yard dash, bench-pressed 225 pounds 15 times, then leapt out of the McClain Center with a 38" vertical jump and 10’8.5" broad jump.
In the agility drills, Wheelwright recorded a 4.11-second short shuttle and 6.68-second three-cone. As noted, his times in the vertical jump, three-cone drill, and 60-yard shuttle would have placed him in the top five of the wide receiver group at the combine.
Rob Wheelwright recaps successful Wisconsin Pro Day performance (B5Q/YouTube)
From what we’re hearing, there could be some more visits lined up for him.
Also getting a look from an NFL team is quarterback Bart Houston, who according to the San Francisco Chronicle’s Eric Branch was schedule to attend the 49ers’ local pro day on Wednesday.
Chris James and "The Juke"
It’s hard to contain excitement for a player like running back Chris James, who through over two-thirds of spring practice has shown to be "electric," has run "with a sense of brutality," and could be a "game changer."
Thursday was no different, as seen below with this move by the redshirt junior and Pitt transfer on defensive end Garrett Rand.
Looks like one legendary Wisconsin back took notice: