2021 NFL Draft Profiles: Best of the Rest From the Mountain West
These players may be long shots to hear their name called in the draft, but here’s what you need to know about what they bring to the pros.
You never know who will get called.
Lots of players across the Mountain West Conference decided to stick around for one last ride in college football, but many others beyond those who got the full draft profile treatment are in the mix to make the jump to the National Football League this week.
These “quick hits” will tell you a little bit about the best of the rest from the Mountain West.
Though he wasn’t quite as decorated in his collegiate career, offensive lineman Adam Jewell was part of the same unit that raised the standing of both Parker Ferguson and Nolan Laufenberg in this year’s draft. He may be slightly undersized for the pro level at 6-foot-2 and 289 pounds, but NFL teams doing their due diligence would be remiss if they didn’t see whether Jewell was worth a shot as an interior rotation guy.
George Silvanic played on both the offensive and defensive lines during his time at the Academy. He participated in the pro day and is currently listed in the transfer portal, however, so we may actually see him somewhere on the college football landscape in 2021 instead.
It may be tempting to view Evan Tyler as “the other guy” from the Broncos’ pro day, but the biggest question he’ll face is whether teams will be scared off by an injury history that includes two ACL tears.
Official Pro Day numbers for #BoiseState S Evan Tyler:
• Height: 6-1 3/4
• Weight: 199
• Bench: 13 reps
• Vertical: 33'0"
• Broad Jump: 9'9"
• 40-YD: 4.55
• 3-Cone: 7.12 pic.twitter.com/bdY78LMOzl
— Jay Tust (@KTVBSportsGuy) March 31, 2021
Center Taaga Tuulima gained a degree of attention within the Mountain West for his pass protection acumen, especially when the Warriors ran the run-and-shoot under Nick Rolovich through 2019. He proved his durability by starting 36 career games, including 24 in a row, but he’ll also have to prove that he isn’t undersized for the NFL, a concern brought forth by Drae Harris at The Draft Network, and can better complement his physicality with improved agility in the pros.
San Diego State
Long snappers don’t typically get a lot of love when it comes to draft profiles, but Air Force’s Austin Cutting was a surprise selection in the 2020 NFL Draft and Turner Bernard, a Patrick Mannelly Award semifinalist last fall, could make it two years in a row that the Mountain West lands a pick at the position.
Tanner Kuljian held his own replacing Brandon Heicklen after transferring from FCS San Diego, meaning that the former Pioneer League Special Teams Player of the Year might face an uphill battle in cracking an NFL roster but probably deserves a shot after landing roughly a third of his kicks inside an opponent’s 20-yard line while averaging 45.4 yards per punt.
Jacob Capra played in 21 games for the Aztecs after transferring to the Mesa from Oregon and held down the left guard spot in 2020, but he’ll face the question of whether he’s a better fit at that position or at tackle in the NFL.
Capra’s teammate on the Aztecs offensive line, Kyle Spalding, was a first-team all-conference selection last fall but, at 6-foot-7 and 299 pounds, may not be an ideal fit at offensive tackle in the pros. If he can add a little weight, however, the Daily Aztec noted that he allowed just one sack in over 200 dropbacks, so he could be viewed as a project pick for an interested coaching staff.