Teams on the radar for tackle help will be meeting with one of the top options available. Georgia tackle Broderick Jones has at least four meetings on his pre-draft itinerary. Jones met with the Titans on Tuesday, will visit the Jets today and has his Patriots meeting on tap for Thursday, according to KPRC2’s Aaron Wilson. Each of these teams exited free agency’s early waves with a question mark at one of their two starting tackle positions. The Bears are meeting with Jones, and the Cardinals are also likely to huddle up with the tackle prospect, ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler tweets.
Jones played only two full college seasons, redshirting in 2020 and declaring for the draft after his sophomore year with the Bulldogs. Of course, both those campaigns ended with Georgia winning national championships. Jones saw action behind Chargers 2022 draftee Jamaree Salyer in 2021 and took over as the Bulldogs’ full-time left tackle last season, starting all 15 Georgia games. He earned first-team All-SEC recognition for his work. The 6-foot-5 blocker grades as ESPN.com’s No. 24 overall prospect, while NFL.com’s Daniel Jeremiah slots the one-year college starter 19th on his big board.
Here is the latest regarding this year’s draft pool:
- Like last year, Georgia stands to be well represented in the first round. The top ex-Bulldog available will be Jalen Carter, who has generated increased scrutiny in recent weeks. After the arrest warrant interrupted Carter’s Combine, Albert Breer of SI.com notes teams outside the top 10 begun digging into the high-end defensive tackle prospect. Carter, who will not face jail time in connection with the misdemeanor warrants that arrived in February, does not plan to take visits with teams picking outside the top 10. The teams picking beyond No. 10 look to have expressed increased interest after the charges, which have affected Carter’s stock to a degree. A mediocre pro day did as well. Carter is open to meeting with teams who could trade into the top 10, and Breer adds a Laremy Tunsil-like tumble out of the top 10 should not be ruled out based on some teams’ views.
- Joining Carter and Jones as first-round-caliber talents, defensive end Nolan Smith is on a few teams’ radars. Jeremiah’s No. 16 overall prospect, Smith met with the Buccaneers on Tuesday and will visit the Ravens and Jaguars later this week, Wilson notes. A torn pectoral muscle limited Smith to eight games in 2022, and he did not top 4.5 sacks in a season with the Bulldogs. But the explosive edge — he of a 4.39-second 40-yard dash at the Combine — is still viewed as a near-certainty to go off the board early. The Bucs and Ravens used first-round choices on an edge in 2021 (Joe Tryon-Shoyinka, Odafe Oweh), while the Jaguars took Georgia edge rusher Travon Walker first overall last year.
- Tennessee wide receiver Jalin Hyatt visited the Cowboys on Tuesday and is meeting with the Saints today, NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport and The Score’s Jordan Schultz report (Twitter links). The Browns also hosted Hyatt this week, CBS Sports’ Josina Anderson tweets. Teaming with QB Hendon Hooker, Hyatt won the Biletnikoff award — given to the Division I-FBS’ top wideout — last season after catching 15 touchdown passes. After not exceeding 300 receiving yards in his first two college seasons, Hyatt broke through for 1,267 in 2022. The slender receiver sits 36th on Jeremiah’s board; Scouts Inc. slots him 44th. The Saints have also met with Hooker.
- In addition to Hyatt, the Cowboys hosted Trenton Simpson, per Rapoport, who adds a Browns visit is also on tap for the former Clemson linebacker. Simpson started for two seasons at Clemson, pairing 65 tackles with 6.5 sacks as a junior. This is not viewed as a strong off-ball linebacker class. Both Jeremiah and Scouts Inc. rate Simpson as the top ILB available; he appears outside the top 40 on both big boards.