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NFL Supplemental Draft: Is Josh Gordon Worth It?

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Mar 21, 2011; Waco, TX, USA; Baylor Bears quarterback Robert Griffin III (10) comes off the field after finishing his throwing workout during the Baylor pro day at the Allison Indoor Facility. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-US PRESSWIRE
Mar 21, 2011; Waco, TX, USA; Baylor Bears quarterback Robert Griffin III (10) comes off the field after finishing his throwing workout during the Baylor pro day at the Allison Indoor Facility. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-US PRESSWIRE

The NFL Supplemental Draft usually comes and goes with barely more than a shrug of the shoulders. Deservedly so, as in most cases the players are guys for the fringes of the roster, with a few notable exceptions. This year might feature another one of those notable exceptions in the form of former Baylor wide receiver Josh Gordon.

Gordon has the physical tools scouts love in a wide receiver. He stands 6'4" and weighs 225 pounds. Not only that, he has blazing speed; some expect him to top the magic 4.4 second mark when he has his pro day on Tuesday.

Needless to say, the draft hype machine kicked into full gear this week. ESPN's Adam Schefter even held out the possibility of some team using a second-round pick to get him.

Gordon showed good hands and his speed on tape during the 2010 season, which was also the last time he played football. A Monday report from PFT cited Baylor sources who viewed Gordon as a better player and prospect than Kendall Wright, who the Titans drafted in the first round this year.

The problem with Gordon is much like that of other draft picks who get plucked out late on the second and third day of the draft. He missed last season and has a truck full of baggage that still has many observers in the dark about his situation as he bounced from Baylor to Utah, where he never went beyond fall practices.

Dan at Mocking the Draft has a nice write up on Gordon, with a healthy dose of skepticism that largely seems missing from the breathless hyperbole of draft-starved analysts. Hype or not, Gordon does have some fans out there among some pretty respectable draft folks, including this opus from Matt Waldman who puts Gordon's ceiling at the Calvin Johnson level.

So what about the Rams? The problem for the Rams isn't one of throwing away picks. They have plenty thanks to the RG3 trade this year, and have a demonstrated knack for multiplying whatever picks they have. The issue in St. Louis is that the Rams' receivers are already mostly just potential. They have a second-round pick in Brian Quick that the team viewed as one of the top receivers in the draft this year. And the list goes on and on from there. All those prospects will need snaps to get better.

Some team is going to draft Gordon, whether its a second- or fifth-round pick. I doubt it will be the Rams.