Texas A&M wide receiver Mike Evans won't know exactly how his impressive NFL Scouting Combine performance will translate to the NFL draft until the day he's picked, presumably in the first round on May 8, but he has to like a phrase he's hearing from the rumor mill: "top 10."
According to the Twitter feed of the Houston Chronicle's Brian Smith, Evans said at the Aggies' pro day event Wednesday that he's increasingly being told he could be a top-10 pick in the draft. Top-10 status would almost certainly make him the second wide receiver chosen, presumably behind Clemson's Sammy Watkins, and more importantly place him in a far better position for contract negotiations.
Evans caught 69 passes for 1,394 yards and 12 touchdowns last season for the Aggies, placing him at No. 9 in the entire NCAA in receiving yards per game at 107.2. With a massive frame (6-foot-5, 225 pounds), he was star quarterback Johnny Manziel's favorite and most reliable target, beating smaller defensive backs for deep passes and red-zone lobs on a consistent basis.
Evans had no need to perform on pro day after turning in an impressive 4.53 40-yard dash at the combine in Indianapolis two weeks ago. If he is indeed headed for top-10 draft status, the New England Patriots and San Francisco 49ers -- both of whom have met with Evans since Tuesday -- would need to make a significant trade up to acquire him. Those two clubs draft at the No. 29 and No. 30 slots, respectively, in the first round.
Follow Chase Goodbread on Twitter @ChaseGoodbread.