WSU Notebook: Cougs and the NFL Draft

THREE COUGARS, d-tackle Xavier Cooper, wideout Vince Mayle and quarterback Connor Halliday are projected to be taken in the NFL draft April 30 - May 2 but Halliday's surgically repaired ankle has also introduced the possibility of him being an undrafted free agent. In terms of sticking with an NFL team, that's not the negative it might appear on paper.

Last year found there were 2,178 players across 32 NFL rosters. Each team had 53 active players and up to a 10-man practice squad.

In addition, every pro team has players on injured reserve. Some occupy other lists such as suspension.

Of the total, 289 players (10.5 percent) were drafted in the first round.

After that, the NFL consisted last year of 219 second round draft picks and 208 third round picks. Round four picks produced 207 players while the fifth, sixth and seventh rounds were almost identical, producing 162, 164 and 165 players, respectively.

What was unexpected: an eye-popping 764 players in the NFL last year were undrafted free agents.

That’s 35.1 percent.

Subtracting the practice squad players lowers the total number of players in the NFL to 1,963 (215 practice squad players on 2014 NFL rosters went undrafted).

So the number of undrafted free agents who earned a true roster spot? A very robust 549 -- 28 percent -- of the NFL.

That's more than the first and second rounds combined.

Connor Halliday is widely projected to go between the fourth and seventh rounds. Vince Mayle is seen a 5th-6th round pick and Xavier Cooper is projected to go in rounds 2-3.

Seven Cougars listed on NFL rosters last season were undrafted free agents: Husain Abdullah, Jed Collins, John Fullington, Andrew Furney, Travis Long, Ropati Pitoitua and Jeff Tuel.

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