By Chadd Cripe
© 2011 Idaho Statesman
This week, I’ll be checking in with Boise State’s NFL prospects. Today, I’ve got notes on Titus Young, Austin Pettis and Jeron Johnson.
But first, here’s the latest from ESPN.com and NFL.com on the Broncos’ prospects — and it’s not particularly good news. If you read the scouting reports on each player at NFL.com, none of the Broncos are considered future starters. Young is listed as a probable slot receiver with Pettis, Johnson, defensive end Ryan Winterswyk and cornerback Brandyn Thompson as backups.
At ESPN.com, Young is rated the No. 50 prospect. Pettis is No. 110 and Johnson is No. 150. Mel Kiper Jr. has Young going 58th to the Baltimore Ravens and Pettis going 95th to the Pittsburgh Steelers.
At NFL.com, Young’s grade converts to top 50. Pettis is in the top 135, Winterswyk is in the top 180, Johnson is in the top 190 and Thompson is in the top 270.
The draft is scheduled for 254 selections.
Pettis visited the Steelers, which lends some legitimacy to Kiper’s projection. He also performed private workouts for the Ravens and Bears.
He has heard he’ll be taken anywhere from the second to the fourth round. He plans to have a party with family members Friday night (second and third rounds) and a larger party at a restaurant Saturday (fourth through seventh rounds).
“The only thing I can really hope for is to go to a team where I fit in really good there — that’s really the main focus,” Pettis said. “… It’s been a long process. I’ve been waiting for this moment. It’s a big day for anyone whose name is getting called. It’s kind of a dream come true.”
Young worked out with the Bears at the same time as Pettis, but declined to say if he’s met with any other teams.
He hasn’t decided how to handle his draft party.
Among the questions that the new adidas spokesman will have answered for him this week — what colors he will wear.
“The way I’m going to look on the field is very important to me,” Young said.
Johnson will spend the draft weekend with family and friends in California.
He expects to come off the board in the middle rounds. He didn’t have any private workouts or team visits, but Arizona and Jacksonville sent their defensive backs coaches to Boise State’s pro day.
“I’m not going to have high expectations for day two,” he said, “but I’ll definitely be watching.”
Johnson performed well in testing. He was the fastest and strongest safety at the NFL Scouting Combine.
“I feel like I did everything in my power to increase my draft stock and now it’s just a waiting game,” he said.
Boise State has 7,500 tickets for the season opener against Georgia in Atlanta. Those tickets will go on sale in late May or early June, with season-ticket holders getting first shot. The price hasn’t been set.