Leviticus Payne

NFL Draft Rumors: Lynch, Hackenberg, Elliott

During interviews on official visits with teams, Paxton Lynch seemed to deflect blame to many of the critical questions thrown his way, Tony Pauline of DraftInsider.net writes (via WalterFootball.com). The Memphis product “did not throw anyone under the bus,” but he seemed to make ‘a number of excuses,” Pauline hears. Overall, teams left with the concern that Lynch is not yet ready to be the guy to lead a franchise. Many now believe that Lynch may be able to eventually blossom into a franchise guy, that time is not today and he may be better off with a situation where he can take his time. Lynch’s poor interviews may help to explain his apparent stock drop in recent days.

  • Conversely, Pauline is hearing good things about quarterback Christian Hackenberg‘s interviews. The Penn State signal caller apparently took responsibility when asked uncomfortable questions and admitted that certain things were his fault. There have been reports of Hackenberg throwing Penn State coach James Franklin under the bus, but Pauline doesn’t buy it based on conversations that he has had.
  • If Laremy Tunsil does not fall into their laps, the Ravens will consider Ezekiel Elliott with their No. 6 choice unless they are able to trade down, Pauline hears.
  • In the last week, there have been conflicting reports on how much the Jets like Lynch. Matt Miller of Bleacher Report (via Twitter) doesn’t believe that the Jets like him very much at all. He also doesn’t believe that he’ll last until pick No. 20.
  • If the Cowboys take Elliott, Miller (on Twitter) expects the 49ers to try very hard to move up for FSU defensive back Jalen Ramsey.
  • The Texans have displayed late-round draft interest in Valdosta State running back Cedric O’Neal, according to a source who spoke with Aaron Wilson of The Houston Chronicle. O’Neal, an All-Gulf South Conference running back who led the conference with 17 touchdowns last season, has also drawn interest from the Chiefs and Eagles.
  • Cincinnati defensive back Leviticus Payne is drawing late interest from the Colts, Vikings, Jets, 49ers, and Texans, Wilson tweets.