DA Draft Buzz April 12: Awuzie Moving up Draft Boards

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Tony Pauline

Draft Analyst Writer

Colorado cornerback Chidobe Awuzie is on the rise and teams size up the potentially awesome cornerback class of 2017.

The long-held consensus among just about everyone is that cornerback rates as the strongest position in the draft. One team said they have more cornerbacks rated as first- and second-round prospects this year than in any previous draft.

In just about all the mock drafts I’ve completed, my pick for the Oakland Raiders in Round 1 has been inside/middle linebacker Zach Cunningham. Yet many I’ve spoken with believe there’s a real good chance the franchise bypasses Cunningham and takes a cornerback in the first frame.

That cornerback could end up being Chidobe Awuzie. The Raiders have worked him out and also brought him in for an official visit.

Of course this assumes Awuzie is available for the Raiders when they are called to the clock with the 24th pick.

He may not make it that far, as I’m told Awuzie could be in play for the Tennessee Titans with their second selection in the first round, pick 18.

Tennessee is another team that doubled up on Awuzie, privately working him out as well as bringing him in for a visit. The Titans need a lot of help in the secondary at both cornerback and safety. As we first reported on January 3rd, there are a number of teams who feel Awuzie can line up at either spot. The fact that he scored a 35 on the Wonderlic makes him even more attractive to teams.

For those keeping count, the Dallas Cowboys are the third team that worked out Awuzie and also brought him in for a visit. Many around the league feel Awuzie has elements of Leon Hall and Darrelle Revis in his game.  As we reported on the final day of combine workouts, teams have consider Awuzie a first round lock.Speaking about the Dallas Cowboys, we’ve had them taking Kansas State defensive end Jordan Willis in our past two mock drafts. Like Awuzie, one wonders if he’ll be available when they select in Round 2.

Willis visited the Tampa Bay Bucs yesterday after flying to San Francisco for a visit with the Niners last week.

During the combine I mentioned the Buffalo Bills were meeting with representatives  of Mike Gillislee in the hopes of hammering out an extension. I’m told talks are ongoing and both sides hope to reach an agreement in the next two weeks.

And finally, Dustin Stanton of Oregon State worked out today for the Cincinnati Bengals.