Early Departures for NFL Could Change Outlook for 2014

Nebraska fans are on pins and needles about whether or not Ameer Abdullah may opt to enter the upcoming NFL draft.  Players have until January 15th to decide.  Already, three wide receivers of note to NU fans have declared for the draft which could make future contests a little easier for the Huskers.


Davante Adams, Fresno State  
Despite two years of eligibility remaining, Fresno State's Davante Adams leaves after a sophomore season in which he amassed 1718 receiving yards and 24 touchdowns.  Factoring into his decision has to be the graduation of quarterback Derek Carr, who is also considered an NFL-level talent.   Backup Brian Burrell has attempted only 12 passes for a total of just 51 yards without a touchdown.  Isaiah Burse, another 1,000 yard receiver for the Bulldogs, will also graduate which may have put Adams into double coverage that much more often.  With a pair of productive running backs returning, the team might also have opted to rush more in 2014.  Seems like the right choice for Adams.  It will also make Nebraska's visit to Fresno in September that much easier. 

Brandon Coleman, Rutgers
Coleman is an interesting case because he wasn't a standout nationally in terms of production in 2013 (34 catches, 538 yards and 4 TD's).  Even his best season (2012) saw him catch just 43 balls for 718 yards and 10 touchdowns.  He was much more of a big play weapon in 2011 when he tallied 552 yards and 6 scores on just 17 catches.  His 6'6" and 220 lbs. frame are sure to get him notices.  Still, one wonders if his draft stock might look like former Husker Maurice Purify.  It's possible that Coleman was concerned that further regression from where he was as a sophomore could harm his NFL draft prospects.  His quarterbacks have been fairly undistinguished and his team is set to join a more difficult conference.  Perhaps a transfer to a more high-powered passing team would have been a better option.  Nevertheless, his departure should make defending Rutgers substantially easier.

Allen Robinson, Penn State
Over the past two seasons, the Nittany Lions have been forced to rely heavily on Robinson.  Another year would certainly have helped the incoming replacement for Bill O'Brien substantially easier.  One would think that James Franklin, or whomever the incoming coach is, might lobby hard for Robinson to postpone his departure another season if he hasn't signed yet with an agent.  You'd expect that PSU quarterback Christian Hackenberg will only get better.  There are a lot of soft spots on the Penn State schedule he could feast on.  Nebraska won't face the Nittany Lions next year, but the loss of Robinson could really impact the program's future.  The pressure is on to win at least 7 or 8 games next year and that may not happen without Robinson.  

With six days remaining for players to declare for the draft, we could see some more standouts come out early.  Already, we see some future opponents weakened by these decisions.

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Comments 14 comments so far

I don’t know—but IMO with the talent the Huskers have at RB sitting in the wings I’m not overly concerned if Ameer heads off to the pros. If he doesn’t don’t we run the risk of some if it transferring away?

I am SO relieved by these departures—I was losing sleep at night fearing losses to these teams, with their dominating records and all.  Now we can all breathe so much easier.

I think you’re absolutely right! If I had to guess I would say he’s gone. The only reason I could see him coming back is because of the vast running back talent coming out. Ameer has nothing left to prove at the college level. Don’t get me wrong, I would love to see him back for his senior season, but if he doesn’t we’ve got plenty of quality playmakers that are ready and waiting for a shot, in particular, Adam Taylor. I’d like and really look for him to show out in spring ball and take the #1 spot on the depth chart going into fall camp. He’s a load at 6’2”, roughly 215ish, and has the speed and power that any elite program would look for, hence his offer list. Granted it’s high school but his highlights and game tape from Katy High are impressive. He had his best games in the playoffs in major class ball for a perennial power in Texas. I would hate to see him transfer away. Call me stupid, but I don’t see Imani as an every down back, more of a change of pace or first and goal as he was this year. Taylor has the size to not loose goal line looks as Ameer did. If anyone were to look at transferring I would say it would be Newby. He’s a talent, sure, but he might see his chances dwindling after this year, ala Aaron Green. I just wasn’t as impressed with Newby this year. I didn’t see the speed or shiftiness I would’ve expected. Realistically, Nebraska has never been hurting for ballers at the IB position. The “next man in” theory has faired will in Lincoln. Anyway, love to hear some other people’s thoughts on the back situation.



I think Ameer will be back. He wants that number one spot all time. If he has another 1700 yard season he’ll have the number 2 spot.

Lets hope we keep Ameer , hes a very talented RB and the heart of the team.. IN Good news , Jariah Tolbert has commited to the HUSKERS!! 6-4 WR from Edna Karr.. Now just to give the trolls a heads up , he is non ranked and or a two star ( NON evaluated ) player from a team in New Orleans that will have about 12-15 guys get DI scholarship.. We have his teammate JAveon Walton committed and are still going after a teammate in IRONs.. While he may only have offers from Utah, Tulane, and Kent State, this is a very good pick up.. He had a tremendous senior season, coming out of no where really, to finish with over 1000 yards receiving.. Nice hands, catches the ball away from the body the majority of the time, and will rack in more offers from bigger programs.. This is another example of junior films ( which recruits are ranked off of) are not the end all be all.. If this kid played like this last year ,he would be a very hot commodity.. Instead , we are lucky to have a staff that does very good on evaluating senior films and they rightfully offered this kid and he excepted.. Welcome to the FAMILY!!

He’s coming back!

And Frazier is gone

Uh, Ameer does have something to prove:  how about a conference championship at least?  Rose Bowl W, even better.

I’m happy to see Amer coming back, but I want to see Cross get a few more touches each game. I love the way he runs, so powerful….takes you back a bit.

I wasn’t so concerned that Abdullah would leave early. If there’s a “buyers market” in the NFL for any position, it’s RB. Specifically, because of the way their used and not so desperately needed, as a featured threat. Plus and especially, he was projected in the later rounds.
For the season he had, you can still put him in the “big time” category, as one of Nebraska’s very best.
From that standpoint, I’m trying to think of the last time a “big time” back, wasn’t virtually compelled, like Ahman Green and the 3 directly before him, didn’t opt out after their Junior seasons.
I don’t put Burkhead and Helu, in that category. Same with Buckhalter and Alexander. Even though Brandon Jackson left early, he didn’t have such a spectacular Junior season. But, that was also a product of the offensive system.
So, to me, Abdullah will enter his last season as Nebraska’s best Senior back since Ken Clark.

Jackson got injured, if I recall correctly.

Hand injury, against Okie in the title game.
He played in the Cotton. Just 6 carries and scored a touchdown.

I thought he blew out a knee there for awhile.

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