Two Purdue football players are likely to be selected in the 2022 NFL Draft: defensive end George Karlaftis and wide receiver David Bell.
Karlaftis, a 2021 All-American, had 14 sacks and 29 tackles for loss in 26 games spanning three seasons with the Boilermakers. Bell, also a 2021 All-American, had 232 catches for 2,946 yards and 21 touchdowns over 29 games and three seasons.
In these mock drafts, Karlaftis is an almost-unanimous first-round pick. Purdue’s last first-round pick was Ryan Kerrigan, who went 16th overall to Washington in the 20th.
Any of these mock drafts that went three rounds deep included Bell.
In 2021, receiver Rondale Moore went in the second round and linebacker Derrick Barnes was selected in the fourth round.
At the NFL Combine:Karlaftis reflects on the journey that will take him to pro career
Pro Day: What Bell is concentrating on
► Ryan Wilson of CBS Sports has Karlaftis as the first pick of the second round to the Detroit Lions. Wilson has Bell going in the third round, no. 77 overall, to the Minnesota Vikings.
► Josh Edwards of CBS Sports sees Karlaftis going 24th overall to the Dallas Cowboys: “Dallas lost Randy Gregory in free agency and rebounded by signing Dante Fowler Jr. Fowler has bounced around from team to team, so it would be foolish to expect an extended stay. Karlaftis is a heavy-handed power rusher who will push the pocket. ” Edwards puts Bell in the third round, no. 99 overall, to the Cleveland Browns.
► Peter Schrager of NFL.com has Karlaftis going No. 31 to the Cincinnati Bengals: “Karlaftis had 11.5 tackles for last season’s loss at Purdue, despite being the only elite talent on the defense. The Bengals get another young pass rusher to join their already promising unit.”
► Lance Zierlein of NFL.com has Karlaftis chosen 14th overall by the Baltimore Ravens: “Karlaftis is a rugged edge defender who can play with a hand down or standing up. He’d fit the Ravens’ culture and has underrated power rushing talent. ”
► Chad Reuter of NFL.com sees a trade involving the No. 21 pick, with the Green Bay Packers taking Karlaftis: “There will be many suitors for the Patriots’ pick, and the Packers understand they can’t just sit back at No. 22 and wait for the top players on their board to fall into their laps. Whether they pick a receiver at No. 21 or a strong edge rusher like Karlaftis, moving into this spot prevents others from jumping ahead of them. ” Reuter sees Bell going in the third round, no. 79 overall, to the Los Angeles Chargers.
► Danny Kelly of The Ringer has Karlaftis heading to the New Orleans Saints at No. 19 overall. And the player comp for Karlaftis? Another Boiler, Ryan Kerrigan. “The Saints add a second early-impact player here in Karlaftis, who can step in and boost the team’s pass-rush rotation in 2022. Along with Cam Jordan, Marcus Davenport, and Payton Turner, Karlaftis gives New Orleans a fearsome group up front . ”
► Walter Football has Karlaftis going No. 13 to the Houston Texans: “Assuming the Texans don’t have a chance at the top two edge rushers in this class, they’ll be able to wait until No. 13 overall to address that area.” David Bell is going in the third round, no. 71 overall, to the Chicago Bears: “The Bears have nothing at receiver beyond Darnell Mooney, so they could easily double up at the position. David Bell is a possession receiver with great size and plus route-running ability.”
► Zach Patraw of Fan Nation has Karlaftis going No. 24 overall to the Dallas Cowboys: “Karlaftis is an above-average mover for his size; his linear burst is particularly impressive. The native Greece makes clean inside cuts and has an effective inside spin. The experienced starter’s quickness, hands and timing make linemen whiff often. ”
► Anthony Threash of Pro Football Focus sees Karlaftis heading to the New York Jets with the No. 10 pick: “Karlaftis defines power. He pairs that power with some of the best hand usage in the class and an explosive get-off that makes life tough on opposing offensive tackles. The 6-foot-4, 275-pounder showed a lot of promise as an underclassman and maximized his full potential as a true junior, displayed by his 90.6 pass-rush grade this season. “