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NFL Draft 2017: Half of Top Analysts Think Notre Dame’s DeShone Kizer Isn’t a First Round Pick

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The former Irish quarterback continues his slip in mock drafts published before Notre Dame’s Pro Day

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NCAA Football: Notre Dame vs Navy Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports

Ten of the top 20 most-followed NFL Draft experts don’t think former Notre Dame Fighting Irish quarterback DeShone Kizer is a first-round selection.

Kizer’s position after a ho-hum NFL Combine - paired with some recent trades involving quarterbacks - has had mock draft analysts rethinking their position on the Toledo product.

Among those skeptical that Kizer will be taken during the first 32 picks are:

  • ESPN’s Mel Kiper, who last published Feb. 15. He didn’t have Kizer in either of his two mocks this year.
  • ESPN’s Todd McShay, who released his third mock Wednesday. Kizer hasn’t appeared in any previous iteration.
  • NFL.com’s Daniel Jeremiah, who unveiled a new mock Monday.
  • Rival’s Mike Farrell (last published Feb. 9), CBS Sports’ Pete Prisco (Feb. 27) and Will Brinson (March 9), NFL.com’s Bucky Brooks (March 2) and Lance Zierlein (Feb. 22), the Houston Chronicle’s Aaron Wilson (Sunday), Los Angeles Times’ Sam Farmer (March 6).

As for highly-followed analysts who still believe in Kizer, he’s projected to be:

  • the No. 2 pick of the San Francisco 49ers (Fox Sports’ Peter Schrager, March 9),
  • the No. 10 pick of the Buffalo Bills (Seahawks Draft Blog’s Rob Staton, Feb. 22),
  • the No. 13 pick of the Arizona Cardinals (The Ringer’s Danny Kelly, Houston Chronicle’s John McClain, ESPN Cleveland’s Tony Grossi, CBS Sports’ Dane Brugler and Nathan Zegura of ClevelandBrowns.com)
  • the No. 25 pick of the Houston Texans (Rotoworld’s Josh Norris, Monday);
  • and the No. 27 pick of the Kansas City Chiefs (WKBW-TV’s Joe Buscaglia, March 7).
Texas Tech v TCU
Pat Mahomes
Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

Before the Combine, analysts were gravitating toward the Cleveland Browns’ 12th pick. Then, last Thursday, the Browns traded for Houston Texans’ quarterback Brock Osweiler. Cleveland is reportedly shopping Osweiler. But some analysts now think the Clemson TigersDeshaun Watson or the North Carolina Tar Heels’ Mitchell Trubisky is a more likely pick for the struggling Ohio franchise. Other mock drafts have started to put Texas Tech’s Patrick Mahomes ahead of Kizer, as well. Mahomes is also a popular pick for the Texans at No. 25.

The Texans and Denver Broncos are considered the most interested teams in Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo, who will either be released or traded soon.

In studying the 140 mock drafts available, as many people have Kizer being selected before the Texans pick as have him going after that.

Kansas City Chiefs v Carolina Panthers
The Kansas City Chiefs released Nick Foles on March 9.
Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images

The numbers don’t change that much if I weight the mock draft according to each writer’s fanbase. (For this, I used the admittedly-not-perfect Twitter follower count of each anaylst). The selection of Kiper, McShay, Jeremiah and all those who had Kizer after the first round - but did not specify an exact position - were assigned No. 33.

The top 20 analysts held 77.20 percent of the vote, so it’s no great surprise to see Kizer end up at No. 26 (basically either the Texans or the Chiefs) in the weighted vote.

A third analysis - the median pick of top 50 analysts (by follower count) - yielded similar results. In this projection, Kizer goes No. 27 to the Chiefs.

The Cardinals have no overtaken the Browns as the most picked destination among the mock drafts analyzed. Twenty-two analysts think he’s going there, with 20 thinking he’ll still end up in Cleveland. There are now 51 analysts (36 percent of the group) who think Kizer won’t go in the first round.

There have been 53 mock drafts released in the last seven days. Kizer is outside the first round in 25 of those (47 percent). He is the pick of the Texans in 11 of those drafts and the pick of the Cardinals in an additional nine drafts.

DeShone Kizer in Mock Drafts

Draft analyst Publication Date of Mock Kizer at... Team
Draft analyst Publication Date of Mock Kizer at... Team
Brad Weiss FanSided 3/15/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Chris Burke Sports Illustrated 3/15/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Dave Birkett Detroit Free Press 3/15/2017 10 Buffalo Bills
Jason Lieser Palm Beach Post 3/15/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Jeff Mullen NFL Draft Geeks 3/15/2017 25 Houston Texans
Pete Prisco CBS Sports 3/15/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Todd McShay ESPN 3/15/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Walter Cherepinsky WalterFootball 3/15/2017 38 Los Angeles Chargers
Chris Ransom Draft Utopia 3/14/2017 2 San Francisco 49ers
Danny Kelly The Ringer 3/14/2017 13 Arizona Cardinals
Kristopher Knox Bleacher Report 3/14/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Nick Rodriguez Endzone Score 3/14/2017 17 Washington Redskins
Staff DraftSite.com 3/14/2017 13 Arizona Cardinals
Brent Sobleski Bleacher Report 3/13/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Bryan Luis INSC Magazine 3/13/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Charean Williams Fort Worth Star-Telegram 3/13/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Charlie Campbell WalterFootball 3/13/2017 13 Arizona Cardinals
Dan Duggan NJ Advance Media 3/13/2017 12 Cleveland Browns
Dan Kadar SB Nation 3/13/2017 25 Houston Texans
Dane Brugler CBS Sports 3/13/2017 13 Arizona Cardinals
Daniel Jeremiah NFL.com 3/13/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Eric Galko The Sporting News 3/13/2017 57 Houston Texans
Josh Norris Rotoworld 3/13/2017 25 Houston Texans
Matt Falk Draftseason 3/13/2017 25 Houston Texans
Micky McKeon Mockout 3/13/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Rob Rang CBS Sports 3/13/2017 25 Houston Texans
Staff DraftTek 3/13/2017 27 Kansas City Chiefs
Staff DraftBlaster.com 3/13/2017 105 Pittsburgh Steelers
Tony Grossi ESPN Cleveland 3/13/2017 13 Arizona Cardinals
Zach Goodall Big Cat Country 3/13/2017 25 Houston Texans
Aaron Wilson Houston Chronicle 3/12/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Chris Roling Bleacher Report 3/12/2017 3 Chicago Bears
Connor Reilly SEC Country 3/12/2017 13 Arizona Cardinals
John McClain Houston Chronicle 3/12/2017 13 Arizona Cardinals
Adam Gorney Rivals 3/11/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Brian Mazique Forbes 3/11/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Jon Dove With the First Pick 3/11/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Mike Farrell Rivals 3/11/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Tab Bamford Daily Chicago Sports Tab 3/11/2017 2 San Francisco 49ers
Anthony Messina Sports Blog 3/10/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Ben Standig CSN Mid-Atlantic 3/10/2017 27 Kansas City Chiefs
Eddie Brown San Diego Union-Tribune 3/10/2017 25 Houston Texans
George Stockburger NFL Mocks 3/10/2017 25 Houston Texans
Jared Dubin CBS Sports 3/10/2017 13 Arizona Cardinals
Luke Easterling The Draft Wire 3/10/2017 25 Houston Texans
Matthew Olson Real Sport 3/10/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Kyle Davis With the First Pick 3/09/2017 25 Houston Texans
Lou Pickney DraftKing.com 3/09/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Maurice Moton Bleacher Report 3/09/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Randy Gurzi NFL Spin Zone 3/09/2017 77 Arizona Cardinals
Tim Campbell Live 4 Sport Network 3/09/2017 25 Houston Texans
Tom Downey Chat Sports 3/09/2017 13 Arizona Cardinals
Will Brinson CBS Sports 3/09/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Carl Cockerham With the First Pick 3/08/2017 13 Arizona Cardinals
Chris Fedor Advance Media (Cleveland) 3/08/2017 13 Arizona Cardinals
Jacob Loque Baltimore Beatdown 3/08/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Jason B. Hirschhorn Sports on Earth 3/08/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Paul Banks The Sports Bank 3/08/2017 12 Cleveland Browns
Ryan Wilson CBS Sports 3/08/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Staff MyNFLDraft.com 3/08/2017 27 Kansas City Chiefs
Andrew Gribble ClevelandBrowns.com 3/07/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Anthony Broome 247 Sports 3/07/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Charley Casserly NFL.com 3/07/2017 31 Buffalo Bills
Cole Thompson The Draft Wire 3/07/2017 27 Kansas City Chiefs
Dan Wilkins The Score 3/07/2017 6 New York Jets
Emily Kaplan MMQB 3/07/2017 12 Cleveland Browns
Joe Buscaglia WKBW-TV (Buffalo) 3/07/2017 27 Kansas City Chiefs
Matt Miller Bleacher Report 3/07/2017 25 Houston Texans
Nate Davis USA Today 3/07/2017 13 Arizona Cardinals
Nathan Zegura ClevelandBrowns.com 3/07/2017 13 Arizona Cardinals
Nicholas Goss NESN 3/07/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Patrick Maks ClevelandBrowns.com 3/07/2017 3 Chicago Bears
Steven Ruiz For the Win/USA Today 3/07/2017 25 Houston Texans
Vasilis Lericos Baltimore Beatdown 3/07/2017 25 Houston Texans
Erik Lambert NFL Mocks 3/06/2017 25 Houston Texans
Joseph Zucker Bleacher Report 3/06/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Justin Bales FF Today 3/06/2017 27 Kansas City Chiefs
Kyle Crabbs FanRag Sports 3/06/2017 2 San Francisco 49ers
Matt Lombardo NJ Advance Media 3/06/2017 10 Buffalo Bills
Russell Brown NFL Mocks 3/06/2017 27 Kansas City Chiefs
Samuel Fuller FullerMetrics 3/06/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Scott Polacek Bleacher Report 3/06/2017 12 Cleveland Browns
Steven Petrella Land of 10 3/06/2017 12 Cleveland Browns
Andrew Mason DenverBroncos.com 3/05/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Art Stapleton The Record (N.J.) 3/03/2017 Not in the first round n/a
David Harrison The Pewter Plank 3/03/2017 25 Houston Texans
Joe Redemann numberFire 3/03/2017 6 New York Jets
Kevin Hansen Eat Drink and Sleep Football 3/03/2017 12 Cleveland Browns
Max Himelstein NFL Draft Blitz 3/03/2017 13 Arizona Cardinals
Bucky Brooks NFL.com 3/02/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Sam Farmer Los Angeles Times 3/02/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Steve Shoup Fanspeak 3/02/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Dan Bilicki Toronto Sun 3/01/2017 3 Chicago Bears
Oliver Connolly All 22 3/01/2017 12 Cleveland Browns
Andre Simone BSN Denver 2/28/2017 12 Cleveland Browns
Connor Hughes NJ.com 2/28/2017 13 Arizona Cardinals
Joe Malfa Turn on the Jets 2/28/2017 12 Cleveland Browns
Keith Mullins Cowboys Wire 2/28/2017 3 Chicago Bears
Staff Fantasy Football Prophet 2/28/2017 Not in the first round n/a
D. Orlando Ledbetter Atlanta Journal-Constitution 2/27/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Dan Schmelzer NFL Spin Zone 2/27/2017 13 Arizona Cardinals
Matt Burke Metro.us 2/27/2017 34 San Francisco 49ers
Nick Klopsis Newsday 2/27/2017 12 Cleveland Browns
Peter Schrager Fox Sports 2/27/2017 2 San Francisco 49ers
Richard Sena Vavel 2/27/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Steve Silverrman Bleacher Report 2/27/2017 Not in the first round n/a
DaRon Frost Pro Players Insider 2/26/2017 12 Cleveland Browns
Ryan Griffith Breaking Football 2/25/2017 3 Chicago Bears
Steve Serby NY Post 2/25/2017 12 Cleveland Browns
Eliot Shorr-Parks NJ Advance Media 2/23/2017 12 Cleveland Browns
Michelle Bruton Bleacher Report 2/23/2017 6 New York Jets
Stephen Cohen Seattle Post-Intelligencer 2/23/2017 12 Cleveland Browns
Xavier Cromartie College Football Metrics 2/23/2017 13 Arizona Cardinals
Lance Zierlein NFL.com 2/22/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Rob Staton Seahawks Draft Blog 2/22/2017 10 Buffalo Bills
Robert Davis Football is Future 2/22/2017 13 Arizona Cardinals
David McCracken Bleacher Report 2/21/2017 20 Denver Broncos
Vinnie Iyer Sporting News 2/21/2017 12 Cleveland Browns
Adam Kurkjian Athlon Sports 2/20/2017 12 Cleveland Browns
James Kratch NJ Advance Media 2/20/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Ryan McCrystal DraftAce 2/17/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Steve Palazzolo Pro Football Focus 2/17/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Bob McManaman The Arizona Republic 2/16/2017 12 Cleveland Browns
Chad Reuter NFL.com 2/16/2017 13 Arizona Cardinals
David Wyatt Gang Green Nation 2/16/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Dieter Kurtenbach Fox Sports 2/16/2017 13 Arizona Cardinals
John Harris Washington Post 2/15/2017 10 Buffalo Bills
Mel Kiper Jr. ESPN 2/15/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Eric Edholm Yahoo! 2/10/2017 27 Kansas City Chiefs
Jeff Risdon RealGM 2/10/2017 12 Cleveland Browns
Mike Kaye First Coast News 2/09/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Scott Krinch CSN Chicago 2/07/2017 12 Cleveland Browns
Michael Pallas The Jet Express 2/06/2017 Not in the first round n/a
Paul Hudrick CSNPhilly.com 2/05/2017 10 Buffalo Bills
Brian Johannes NFL Draft Geek 2/01/2017 2 San Francisco 49ers
Jay Skurski The Buffalo News 1/29/2017 12 Cleveland Browns
Jonathan Valencia Breaking Football 1/25/2017 13 Arizona Cardinals
Will Carroll ALL 22 1/24/2017 2 San Francisco 49ers
Justis Mosqueda Bleacher Report 1/23/2017 2 San Francisco 49ers
Mark Eckel NJ Advance Media 1/10/2017 3 Chicago Bears
Jonathan Valencia Breaking Football 1/25/2017 13 Arizona Cardinals
As of March 15 @andrewwinn