Two Group of Five players were selected in the first round of the 2017 NFL Draft, neither of whom — Western Michigan receiver Corey Davis and Temple defensive end Haason Reddick — were early entrants. There may be two early-entrant Group of Five players chosen in the first round of the 2018 NFL Draft: SMU receiver Courtland Sutton and Wyoming quarterback Josh Allen, who are among the 14 Group of Five early entrants.
One hundred and fourteen underclassmen declared for the 2018 NFL Draft. One hundred are coming from Power Five programs and one from an FCS program. That leaves 14 early entrants from 12 different Group of Five programs, which is already more than last year’s 10 players (from 10 different programs).
While Sutton and Allen will garner the heavy majority of pre-draft attention as potential first-round picks, UCF receiver Tre’Quan Smith and another SMU receiver, Trey Quinn, could earn day-two grades.
Here is the full list of Group of Five early entrants:
|Leighton Vander Esch||LB||Boise State|
|Richie James||WR||Middle Tennessee|
|Frank Ginda||LB||San Jose State|
|Mike Hughes||DB||South Florida|
|Korey Robertson||WR||Southern Miss|
|Joel Iyiegbuniwe||LB||Western Kentucky|