USC football has had the most first round NFL Draft picks in history, but they will need to produce more to stay on top. Who is up to the task?
USC football didn’t have a player selected in the first round of the 2019 NFL Draft. As a result, Ohio State was able to catch the Trojans for the all-time record with 81 players taken in the opening round.
Getting back out in front will require USC to give more players a spotlight in which to grow their pro prospects.
So let’s take a look at the Trojans on the 2019 squad who could get USC back into the first round draft conversation:
Michael Pittman is arguably USC’s best chance to sneak into the first round in 2019, but he has a lot of work to get there having received a third-round grade in draft evaluations coming out of 2018.
Things haven’t exactly held together from an injury perspective, but Pittman has the physical tools to wow NFL scouts. His 6-foot-4 frame combined with excellent speed and body control should turn heads at next year’s NFL Combine.
His playmaking ability also comes through on tape. One simply needs to watch him beat out multiple defenders for an unlikely jump-ball touchdown against Utah.
Consistent production is really the only thing standing between Pittman and a high draft grade.
He led USC with 758 yards and six touchdowns in 2018 but he needed five weeks to get into a true groove and then missed two games with injury in the middle of his best stretch of the season.
Fortunately for Pittman, he was healthy throughout Spring Camp and took to the Air Raid offense like a fish to water. Opportunities to exponentially increase his production will be present this fall.