Rogers Hopes He Is Moving Up In NFL Draft

Cornerback Carlos Rogers talks about this week's NFL Draft and where he fits into it.

Auburn, Ala.--While it has been widely speculated that two Auburn football players will be among the first 10 players selected in the 2005 National Football League Draft, Carlos Rogers says there is room for another Tiger at the top of the draft board and says he is just the man to be there.

Rogers, who obviously made a wise decision to return for his senior season at Auburn, is expected to be one of the top three cornerbacks selected in the draft.

"A lot of teams like me in the Top 10," Rogers says. "I am just waiting to see, just like everybody else, how things pan out."

Rogers is shown celebrating Auburn's first SEC football championship since the 1989 season.

His college roommate, Carnell Williams, is considered close to a lock to be selected in the Top 10 in this year's draft, which runs Saturday and Sunday in New York City. However, Auburn's other senior tailback, Ronnie Brown, is generally considered to be the most likely selection as the first running back taken in the draft this year. He will be in New York as one of just five players invited to the draft as guests of the NFL.

Rogers, who has been working out in Auburn with his former teammates including another possibility as a first or second round pick, quarterback Jason Campbell, says he doesn't really know what team is most likely to draft him. He has taken trips to personally work out for NFL teams in New York, Memphis, San Diego and Washington and the Miami Dolphins came to Auburn for a workout.

"If I had a choice, I would rather stay down South, but it doesn't really matter," Rogers says. "The first team that drafts a corner, hopefully, it will be me."

Rogers, who plans to watch the draft on Saturday with his family in Augusta, Ga., says he is excited about the event. "It is a real good feeling. I am happy about it, but I guess I will be nervous on Saturday. I am just anxious to hurry and get off the board to see where I am at."

Rogers earned All-American honors as a senior and also won the Jim Thorpe Award, presented annually to the nation's top college defensive back. A preseason goal was to be a finalist for the award.

The cornerback considered going pro after his junior year, but, like Brown and Williams, they all made the decision to come back as seniors and played major roles in Auburn's 13-0 season. Auburn coach Tommy Tuberville says that Rogers made a great move. "Carlos had a great senior season and really moved up in the draft," Tuberville says. "Everything we hear is that he will be selected early."

Rogers says he believes he is a much better player now than he was going into what turned out to be a 13-0 season for his Tigers.

"In my senior season, I had a lot of growth out there at the corner position," he says. "I took on a leadership role and it worked out for the best for me."

Rogers (right) is shown at Auburn's pro day workout with teammate Junior Rosegreen, a safety who is expected to be drafted several rounds after Rogers.

Rogers says it also was a good financial decision to wait for the 2005 draft. He figures he will make millions of dollars more on his NFL contract from his decision to stay at Auburn one more year.

On the money front, Rogers says the only major purchase he has made or plans to make is the Cadillac Esclante he is now driving. He says that he and his buddy Carnell Williams are driving to Biloxi to relax on Wednesday to get away from the draft scene pressure and jokes he is just taking a little bit of money with him.

Rogers says he has followed the mock drafts leading up to the real thing with interest. He, Adam "Pacman" Jones of West Virginia and Antrel Rolle of Miami are expected to be the top three cornerbacks drafted. "I look at it actually," he says.

"As I talk to teams, and the people who are actually going to be in the room drafting, the people who do that mock draft don't have a clue what is going on. Maybe the top five picks may be right, the guys going to New York, but after that they don't know what is going on because the guys said they can't tell them their business because other teams will start looking at who they are looking at and might mess up who they want to do draft."


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