Auburn running back Peyton Barber probably won’t get drafted in the first two rounds of April’s NFL draft, but that didn’t stop him from leaving the Tigers early and declaring for the draft.
“My mother is homeless right now,” Barber said Wednesday at the NFL Scouting Combine.
Barber, who rushed for 1,017 yards last season, revealed his mother, Lori, has been living with his sister. That provided the stimulus for him to forgo his final year of eligibility and enter the draft even though he’ll likely be a late-round pick.
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Barber’s friend and former teammate, Panthers running back Cameron Artis-Payne, signed a four-year, $2.45 million deal with Carolina when he was drafted in the fifth round last year. Barber has also ADHD and dyslexia, according to Georgia’s Columbus Ledger-Enquirer.
This, of course, will fuel more debate on whether to pay college football players.
In the 2015 fiscal year – the season before Barber’s breakout year but the latest available data – Auburn football brought in $24.8 million in revenue while having $11.4 million in expenses.
That equals a $13.4 million profit for a football program that would ride Barber for 238 carries during a 7-6 season and a bowl victory.
Three things we learned
▪ Ole Miss tackle Laremy Tunsil is the projected No. 1 overall pick. He said he would love to play for the Titans so that his college fans can see him in Nashville.
▪ Offensive linemen are usually good talkers, but Ohio State tackle Taylor Decker is exceptional. We’ll write more on him in the coming weeks, and there’s no doubt he’ll blow teams away in the interview process.
▪ There are always strange questions asked at the combine. North Dakota State offensive tackle Joe Haeg said one team asked him, in the middle of football questioning, what his favorite beer is. He said Guinness.
By the numbers
247 Weight, in pounds, of Alabama running back and Heisman Trophy winner Derrick Henry, the heaviest running back at the combine.
1,000,000 Dollars adidas will give to a player who breaks the combine’s 40-yard dash record of 4.24 while wearing their cleats.
6 Minutes on new Browns coach Hue Jackson’s combine filibuster before taking questions.
▪ L.A. Rams coach Jeff Fisher announced he’s stepping down from the league’s competition committee as his team moves from St. Louis. Panthers coach Ron Rivera is on the committee.
▪ Chicago Bears coach John Fox wouldn’t say who he rooted for in Super Bowl 50. Fox coached the Panthers to Super Bowl XXXVIII and the Broncos in Super Bowl XLVIII.
▪ UCLA kicker Ka’imi Fairbairn was the first player to give interviews at the combine. A Hawaii native, Fairbairn’s full name is John Christian Ka’iminoeauloameka’ikeokekumupa’a Fairbairn.
They said it
“You have to end the game with the lead.” – Giants coach Ben McAdoo after New York gave up several late leads last season.
“We’d love to have Mario back.” – Bills coach Rex Ryan on disgruntled defensive end Mario Williams.
“I’ve watched a lot of college tape leading up to this and boy, three teams that jumped out were Ohio State, Clemson and Alabama. Huge, huge talent on those football teams.” – Tampa Bay coach Dirk Koetter.
Thursday’s highlight: With one day left before on-field workouts, quarterbacks, tight ends and receivers will speak to the media Thursday.
Combine on TV: NFL Network.