TSN on Vols in Draft

The Sporting News' NFL Draft magazine sees seven Tennessee football players being selected in the April 29-30 draft. None, however, is projected to go before the third round.

Jason Allen, who missed the last half of the 2005 season with a dislocated hip, is rated No. 10 among safety prospects and projected to go in Round 3. Keep in mind that Allen's pro future was clouded several weeks ago, when TSN's NFL Draft issue apparently went to press. He has since run some spectacular times before NFL scouts and is now being projected as a late first-round or early second-round choice.

Jesse Mahelona is rated No. 8 among defensive tackles and projected to go in Round 3, as well.

Parys Haralson is rated No. 14 among defensive end prospects and projected to go in Round 4.

Gerald Riggs is ranked No. 11 at running back and projected to be picked in Round 4, also.

Omar Gaither is ranked No. 17 among outside linebackers and projected to be picked in Round 5.

Kevin Simon is ranked No. 21 among outside linebackers and projected to be selected in Round 6. Simon played middle linebacker at Tennessee but, at 5-10 and 230 pounds, he may have to move outside in the NFL.

Rob Smith, who elected to skip his senior season at UT and declare for the NFL Draft, is rated No. 11 at guard and also is projected to be taken in Round 6.

Cody Douglas is ranked No. 16 among guards, Albert Toeaina No. 24 among offensive tackles and Chris Hannon No. 40 among wide receivers but none is projected to be drafted by the analysts at The Sporting News. Hannon posted a sizzling 4.37 clocking in the 40-yard dash at UT's most recent Pro Day, however, and that should elevate his draft stock considerably.


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