While the 2022 NFL Draft is still far off in the distance, players that will be drafted early are on the field now. Each week presents unique matchups for draft prospects and this week is no different. Here are NFL Draft prospects to watch in conference championship week recap.
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1. George Pickens, WR, Georgia Bulldogs
Georgia went undefeated during the regular season, but lost to Alabama in the SEC Championship. Their offense struggled to keep up with Alabama. George Pickens was only able to register two catches for 41 yards, but a lot of that was on the quarterback play.
Pickens has only been back for a few games after recovering from a torn ACL. Even with the limited production, he was able to show that he was healthy and had some of his explosiveness back. Before his injury he was seen as a potential first-round pick, but may slip a little after not playing too much this season.
2. Devonte Wyatt, DL, Georgia Bulldogs
Georgia’s defense had an uncharacteristically bad day against Alabama, which put the offense in a tough spot. There were still some bright spots defensively and that includes defensive lineman Devonte Wyatt. He finished the game with three tackles, one tackle for loss and two quarterback hurries. Wyatt also forced a fumble by punching the ball out of Bryce Young‘s hands.
Wyatt has great size for a defensive lineman at 6-foot-5 and 315 pounds. Even though he is big, Wyatt is athletic and moves well. He is a part of a very talented defensive line, but is still gaining attention for his play. Wyatt is a projected day two pick in the 2022 NFL Draft.
3. Derion Kendrick, CB, Georgia Bulldogs
It was a rough day for the entire Georgia defense, but especially the secondary. Alabama passed for 421 yards on the day. Derion Kendrick did not have his best performance. The only recorded stat he had was one tackle and he gave up plenty of yards through the air.
Even with the disappointing performance, Kendrick still had a great season after transferring in from Clemson. He can still improve his stock in the College Football Playoff. Kendrick is likely going to be a day two pick in the 2022 NFL Draft.
4. Evan Neal, OT, Alabama Crimson Tide
After struggling against Auburn, Alabama came out inspired against Georgia to win the SEC Championship Game. One thing that changed was the offensive line, who played extremely well. Evan Neal has been the best lineman for the whole season, but the rest of the line also played well in this game.
Neal is huge, but also has great movement abilities. It makes him very unique and is why he is projected to be the top lineman selected in the 2022 NFL Draft. He will likely be selected within the top five picks in the draft.
5. Abram Smith, RB, Baylor Bears
Baylor was able to defeat Oklahoma State in a rematch to win the Big 12 Championship Game. It was a low-scoring, defensive game where Baylor didn’t move the ball very well. Abram Smith had some tough runs, but was held to 63 rushing yards on 17 carries. He did not register a catch.
It wasn’t Smith’s best game, but he ran hard and helped move the chains on occasion. He has built up his draft stock this year a lot after moving back to running back after a year at linebacker. Smith is currently projected to be a mid to late-round pick in the 2022 NFL Draft.
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