By LARRY VAUGHT
It seems that nothing is going to stop the NFL from starting its draft April 23 even if teams have not been able to have players come for visits/interviews and if Pro Days at colleges across the country were canceled by the coronavirus.
Kentucky coach Mark Stoops is keeping in contact with Lynn Bowden, the receiver turned quarterback who saved UK’s season last year.
“Making sure he’s staying focused and doing the work necessary and making sure he has the ability to work out somewhere. He sounded good and is doing a good job,” Stoops said.
CBSSports.com listed Bowden’s strengths as being a natural playmaker who could return kicks, will not look to go down when additional yardage is available, great vision, lateral quickness and elusiveness. Not sure Kentucky fans would argue with any of that.
But the weaknesses? I’m not sure any Kentucky fan will agree with them.
“Lacks focus, overprotecting himself early in 2019 led to drops. Situational awareness could improve, fielded bouncing punt inside 10. Known to carry the ball recklessly,” the CBSSports.com draft profile noted.
Bowden had 745 receiving yards and five touchdowns as a sophomore before rusing for 1,468 yards and 13 scores in 2019, throwing for 403 yards and three scores (including the game-winner in the Belk Bowl) and leading UK with 348 receiving yards. He was name the Paul Hornung Award winner as the nation’s most outstanding all-purpose player and a first-team Associated Press All-American all-purpose player.
Stoops said numerous NFL teams about Bowden and other UK players like offensive lineman Logan Stenberg.
Stoops doesn’t think not having a Pro Day at UK will impact anyone’s draft status.
“The good thing is guys like Logan, he did an awful lot. He was able to go to the Senior Bowl and that was big for him and the (NFL) Combine,” Stoops said. “Lynn, I don’t think it will hurt him at all. I have heard from quite a few teams and the one common theme is that the film doesn’t lie.
“The kid is an incredible football player and incredible competitor. I’ve never worked in the NFL, and they’ve got to do what they’ve got to do, but maybe it will be good for them, to quit worrying about all of the other things and just look at the film and see who the best football players are because he’s certainly one of them.”