TUSCALOOSA, Ala. -- A published report says Heisman Trophy winner Derrick Henry of Alabama is headed to the NFL, but it's uncertain how high he would be selected.
ESPN analyst Todd McShay rates Henry as the No. 2 running back in the draft and the No. 37 prospect overall. Another ESPN analyst, Mel Kiper Jr., rates Henry as a third-round pick who could break into the second round.
"He doesn't have enough wiggle or change of direction for NFL teams," Kiper told reporters in a Thursday teleconference.
The NFL draft will be April 28-30. Monday is the deadline for non-seniors to declare for the draft.
Alabama's athletics communications office emailed a news release Thursday that the school will host a press conference Friday at 2 p.m. for juniors declaring for the draft.
Alabama safety Eddie Jackson and outside linebacker Ryan Anderson both announced on Twitter on Thursday that they will remain at Alabama. Linebacker Tim Williams did the same Wednesday.
In a breakout junior campaign, Williams had 10.5 sacks. Williams starred on third down as a pass rushing specialist, but returned to develop into a more complete linebacker.
"Coming back to play with my brothers. We can win this thing again baby!! RTR." Williams posted Wednesday.
In his first year playing safety, Jackson finished the year tied for No. 7 in the nation with six interceptions, including two he returned for touchdowns. Jackson intercepted a pass in the national championship, and was named the defensive player of the game. The Associated Press named him a third-team All-American, and he was named first-team All-Southeastern Conference.
"It Feel Good To Be Coming Back With My Brothers For Another Year...Lets Get It," Jackson posted on Thursday.
Anderson, a redshirt junior, announced via his Twitter account that he plans to return to Tuscaloosa for his final year.
"Coming back to school another year.. Still a lot of stuff I want to accomplish #roadto17" Anderson posted Thursday afternoon.
Anderson finished third on the team with 11.5 tackles for loss, including six sacks. The Daphne, Ala., native had 37 total tackles.
According to an ESPN report, Henry will skip his senior heading to the NFL. No draft-eligible Heisman Trophy winner has returned to school since Oklahoma's Sam Bradford, the 2008 winner, per ESPN Stats and Info.
Tide coach Nick Saban has had a long-standing policy of encouraging players who receive first-round grades from the NFL Advisory board to enter the draft because it's the best "business decision." He also believes that if a player can't improve their draft stock by returning, they should leave for the NFL. That's usually for running backs because the amount of hits they take and how short their career spans are.
Henry became the first player in Alabama and SEC history to rush for more than 2,000 yards, finishing with 2,219 to go with 28 rushing touchdowns. Henry broke Shaun Alexander's school record for career rushing yards with 3,591 while tying Mark Ingram's mark for career rushing touchdowns (42).
"Our players have typically made really good decisions about how they can enhance their future by staying in college and making good business decisions about what they do rather than just emotional decisions about I want to play in the NFL," Saban said. "But sometimes that's not the best thing for them to do at that particular time. The NFL is not going to go away. They'll have all those opportunities next year."
Alabama defensive tackle A'Shawn Robinson, defensive end Jonathan Allen and tight end O.J. Howard still have decisions to make. Both Robinson and Allen are projected first-round picks. Kiper has Ragland going with the No. 11 pick to Chicago and Robinson to New Orleans with the No. 12 selection.
Kiper has Howard rated as high as the second-best tight end prospect behind Arkansas' Hunter Henry. Howard was named the offensive player of the national championship game after catching five passes for 208 yards and two touchdowns.
Contact Anniston Star Sports Writer Marq Burnett at firstname.lastname@example.org. On Twitter:@Marq_Burnett.