Pierce, other Owls await NFL fate

Bernard Pierce, who is forgoing his senior season, was given a third-round grade from the NFL Draft Advisory Committee.
Bernard Pierce, who is forgoing his senior season, was given a third-round grade from the NFL Draft Advisory Committee. (ELIZABETH ROBERTSON / Staff Photographer)
Posted: April 26, 2012

Temple tailback Bernard Pierce, tight end Evan Rodriguez, outside linebacker Tahir Whitehead, and converted outside linebacker Adrian Robinson figure to hear their names called this week in the NFL draft.

"I'm looking at the mid rounds, from three to five is what I'm hearing," Rodriguez said of where he is projected to be drafted.

Pierce likely will become the first Owl selected. The 6-foot, 218-pounder, who decided to forgo his senior season to enter the draft, received a third-round grade from the NFL Draft Advisory Committee in January.

According to Walter Cherepinsky of WalterFootball.com, that's where Pierce will be selected. Cherepinsky has the Ardmore native going to the Pittsburgh Steelers in the third round in his mock draft.

Charlie Campbell of WalterFootball.com and Drafttek.com have Pierce going in the fourth round. Campbell has the Seattle Seahawks drafting him, while Drafttek.com has the Green Bay Packers selecting him.

There also are several possible destinations for Rodriguez.

"There are so many teams," the 6-1, 242-pounder said. "The Giants have been asking about me. The Eagles . . . 49ers, Tampa Bay, Denver. There's quite a few teams that are showing a lot of interest in me."

Cherepinsky has the Eagles selecting Rodriguez in the fifth round. Campbell has him going to the Jacksonville Jaguars in the sixth round.

Whitehead, a Newark, N.J., native, will stay close to home, according to WalterFootball.com. Cherepinsky has the 6-1, 236-pounder going in the sixth round to the New York Jets. Campbell has the New York Giants drafting him in the seventh round.

"At the end of the day, that's the least important thing - as long as I get a shot," Whitehead said of where he ends up.

The 6-2 Robinson, who played defensive end at Temple, is projected by both Cherepinsky and Drafttek.com to be the Indianapolis Colts' seventh-round pick. Offensive lineman Derek Dennis and safety Kevin Kroboth, two other former Temple players, are expected to sign with a team as free agents.


Contact Keith Pompey at kpompey@phillynews.com, or @pompeysgridlock on Twitter. Read his blog, "Owls Inq," at www.philly.com/owlsinq

 

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