2011 NFL Draft: Nick Fairley To Announce Status Friday

For more on the NFL draft, check out Mocking The Draft.

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2011 NFL Draft Prospects: Auburn's Nick Fairley To Make Announcement Friday

Auburn defensive tackle Nick Fairley will make an announcement regarding his eligibility for the draft on Friday. Here’s the big sentence:

Fairley’s high school football coach says the announcement will come at the player’s alma mater, Williamson High School in Mobile. Underclassmen have until Saturday to declare for the draft.

It sounds like Fairley is entering the draft. If you were a likely first-round pick, would you go back to your high school just to announce you were staying in college for a year? I’d think you’d only go back if it were a momentous occasion.

Anyway, Fairley will probably be a first-round pick, and will probably go earlier in the round rather than later. SB Nation’s latest mock has him going to the Texans with the 11th pick:

Wade Phillips is in as the Texans’ new defensive coordinator, and he’ll bring his one-gap 3-4 defense with him. Fairley has the length to play 3-4 end, and the quickness to penetrate effectively in Phillips’ scheme.

It wouldn’t be a surprise, though, if he went earlier than that.

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2011 NFL Mock Draft: Derek Sherrod To Steelers?

I had to chuckle at Rob Rang's latest mock draft at CBSSports.com. Not because of its quality, but because of the way he thinks the Ravens and Steelers' picks will go. He has the Steelers taking Mississippi State offensive lineman Derek Sherrod, and as far as I can tell, that would be a great value for a late first-round pick. Sherrod nearly always ranks in the first round in mock drafts, and is often in the first half of it. (Here's a scouting report.)

One pick before that, though, Rang has the Ravens taking .... wait for it ... Mike Pouncey, brother of Steelers 2010 first-rounder Maurkice Pouncey. That sure would make the Steelers-Ravens rivalry even more compelling, wouldn't it? Anyway, Rang also has the Panthers taking LSU cornerback Patrick Peterson with the first overall pick.

Things work out a bit differently in Chad Reuter's most recent mock, over at CBS. He has Sherrod going to the Cowboys at No. 9 overall, the Ravens taking a different offensive lineman (Penn State's Stefen Wisniewski), and the Steelers taking Wisconsin defensive end J.J. Watt, also a sensible pick. Rang has the Panthers taking Clemson's Da'Quan Bowers and the Broncos taking Peterson with the second pick.

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