DeVante Parker, Jaelen Strong poised to rise up draft boards

When the NFL draft rolls around, there are always prospects rising and falling on boards across the league. The 2015 edition is no exception, and coming out of the NFL Scouting Combine, a few wide receivers who weren't generating much buzz in early February are starting to make waves.



One of the names that NFL Media analyst Charles Davis knows teams will dig into more and evaluate further is actually already near the top of most folks' positional rankings but poised to continue climbing -- Louisville's DeVante Parker.

"Most people would say, 'Rising? What are you talking about? He's number three on most people's boards,'" said Davis on NFL Network's "Path to the Draft." "He is definitely a riser. I said before the combine to keep an eye on him. He is off the radar a little bit in being named one of the top receivers because he missed part of last year with a broken foot. Coming out of the combine, many people are talking about him maybe being the top receiver in this draft. He did nothing to disappoint us at the combine."

Parker is regarded as the ninth-best player in the draft, according to NFL Media analyst Daniel Jeremiah. Analyst Bucky Brooks has him rated as the No. 8 player in his latest Big Board. Parker is starting to occupy a similar spot on most people's boards coming out of the combine, where he impressed with a good 40-yard dash time. In the latest NFL.com mock drafts, Parker is projected to go as high as the No. 12 overall pick to the Cleveland Browns; Davis thinks it is the New Orleans Saints who will snatch him up as the 13th pick in the first round.

But Parker isn't the only receiver who could have his arrow pointing up. Former Arizona State receiver Jaelen Strong is also gaining some steam at the tail end of the first round after being labeled as a second-round selection. 

"You talk about a big-bodied guy who understands attacking the football at its highest point -- at Arizona State he did a lot of back-shoulder catching, and I love that because you can never guard him," NFL Network's Curtis Conway said. "His stock is rising after the combine."

Just like last year's draft, it appears that receiver-needy teams will have their pick of great players when it comes time to hand in the card in Chicago.

You can follow Bryan Fischer on Twitter at @BryanDFischer.

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