Arkansas Team News

Which Arkansas player in the 2017 NFL Draft class will have the best pro career?

Deatrich Wise Jeremy Sprinkle Keon Hatcher
PHOTOS BY USA TODAY SPORTS

The NFL draft is almost a month away and players will finally get a chance to learn their fate.

Arkansas players will be no exception to that.

But even though many of the former Razorbacks seem bound to get picked up by teams as undrafted free agents, that doesn’t mean they can’t have successful NFL careers.

So of these Arkansas players in this year’s draft class, who will have the best NFL career? Let’s take a look.

P Toby Baker

Baker stands out as a guy who has the best chance to succeed in the NFL. The former walk-on exploded during his senior campaign, averaging almost 45 yards per punt and ranking in the top 15 nationally. On top of the yardage consistency, he did not have any of his punts blocked. His improvement was visible, punting 21 50-plus yard punts compared to only six the previous season. Overlooked at times, Baker was clearly the most consistent player on Arkansas last season. If not for a terrible defense, he would have been given more credit for steady play.

DE Deatrich Wise

Wise has the most potential of any Arkansas player looking to play in the NFL. Unfortunately for his draft dock, Wise underperformed during his senir season as a Razorback. It was a step back from a great junior year, leading many to wonder if he was playing injured. With the size (6 feet 5, 271 pounds) and ability there, he just needs to rekindle his junior season play when he had eight sacks and 10.5 tackles for a loss.

WR Keon Hatcher

Hatcher is a guy that never got to achieve his full potential during his time at Arkansas. Injuries plagued his career, making him an interesting option for NFL executives. The talent is there, but will he be able to stay on the field? He was a steady target for both Brandon and Austin Allen. The Oklahoma native is not going to dazzle you with his speed or size, but he makes up for that with soft hands and precise route running. Even in the NFL, wide receivers will drop easy passes. If Hatcher makes a roster, do not expect him to be one of those players.

Other Arkansas players in this year’s NFL draft:

S DJ Dean
LB Brooks Ellis
DL Taiwan Johnson
DL Jeremiah Ledbetter
WR Drew Morgan
WR Dominique Reed
OT Dan Skipper
TE Jeremy Sprinkle
RB Kody Walker
LB Josh Williams
DL JaMichael Winston

RELATED: Brother act: So who’s a better QB, Austin Allen or older sibling Brandon?

(You can follow Tye Richardson on Twitter @TyESPN995)

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