War Eagle Extra

Auburn’s draft selections slimmer than usual

AUBURN, Ala. — A novice in the NFL draft selection process, former Auburn guard Tyronne Green sought out advice from players who had gone through it before, just to gauge what he can expect when this weekend’s festivities get under way.

Their advice? Don’t believe a thing you hear.

“I’ve talked to guys who have gotten drafted by teams that they didn’t talk to the whole process,” Green said. “The last couple weeks I’ve been getting calls from some teams that I haven’t talked to once. So as far knowing a projection, what round, that stuff, I guess I’ll have to wait it out and see and be just as shocked as everyone else.”

Green is one of three Auburn players who should be selected at some point during the NFL’s seven-round draft this weekend in New York City, joining defensive tackle Sen’Derrick Marks and cornerback Jerraud Powers, a pair of early entrants who bypassed their senior season.

It is a decidedly slim group of draftees from Auburn this year, a rarity for the football-obsessed school. The Tigers have had at least one player taken in the first or second round and at least three selected overall in every draft since 2004, a pair of streaks that could end this weekend.

Green appears to be a solid third-round pick, according to the mock drafts of Todd McShay and Mel Kiper Jr., ESPN’s pre-eminent draft experts. McShay has him going to the Miami Dolphins at No. 87 and Kiper has him going to the New York Giants at No. 91.

Since Auburn’s pro day at the beginning of March, the 6-foot-1 1/2, 305-pound Green has split his time working out in Auburn and his hometown on Pensacola, Fla., where he’ll have a modest gathering of family and friends to watch the draft on TV.

“I can’t say I’m nervous,” he said. “More anxious to see what happens, where I’m going to end up. I have faith that it’s going to work out for me.”

Marks, meanwhile, watched his draft stock plummet not long after he decided to forgo his senior season in late December, mostly because of a tweaked hamstring suffered at the NFL combine in February that clearly affected him during Auburn’s pro day last month.

Since then, he’s had successful individual workouts with New England, Kansas City, Indianapolis and Atlanta and visited Tennessee, declaring his hamstring 100 percent healthy.

Despite that, there is little consensus on where the 6-foot-2, 306-pound tackle might go in the draft. McShay has the Indianapolis Colts taking him in the second round at No. 61 overall. Kiper, who two months ago called Marks a lock to go in the top-15 if he had returned for his senior season, doesn’t have him going off the board until the fourth round at No. 132 to the Pittsburgh Steelers.

“You could be the kind of person who looks at mock drafts and all that kind of stuff, but those guys don’t make the picks,” Marks said. “So I’m just going to sit back and watch it.”

McShay has Powers going to the Atlanta Falcons in the seventh round.

Defensive tackle Tez Doolittle, running back Brad Lester, wide receiver Rod Smith and running back Tristan Davis are among a group of Tigers who have an outside chance of getting drafted. Failing that, they could sign free agent contracts with the team of their choosing.