It may not be long before Larry Warford hears his name called once tonight’s second and third rounds of the NFL draft get underway. Warford is now considered to be the best offensive guard available on the board and there are a number of teams looking to go that route with their second round pick. Not to mention, Athlon Sports called Warford the best available player on Day Two — that’s right, the BEST AVAILABLE — ahead of guys like Heisman runner-up Manti Te’o and projected first rounder Geno Smith.
Once he’s selected, Warford will be Kentucky’s first offensive lineman selected in the draft in 20 years. If he goes in Round 2, he’ll be just the fifth Wildcat picked up in the first two rounds during that 20-year span, and depending how quickly he comes off the board, he could be UK’s third highest selection since George Adams went in the first round in 1985. Dermontti Dawson, one of my all-time favorites, had the best showing by a Kentucky offensive lineman in the NFL draft when he went to the Pittsburgh Steelers at No. 44 in 1988. There is a decent chance a team calls dibs on Warford before this year’s 44th pick is on the clock.
Regardless of where he ends up, one lucky team is getting an NFL-ready lineman to power block and fill gaps in the middle. He should start right away this fall.