CHICAGO -- La'el Collins' draft stock remains in question as an investigation into the shooting death of a 29-year-old pregnant woman, Brittany Mills, is unresolved. Mills was Collins' ex-girlfriend, and Collins, who is not a suspect, is scheduled to be interviewed by police regarding the case after the draft.
Collins was once thought to be a first-round lock, but he went undrafted in Round 1 after a request from his agent to be pulled from the draft in favor of this summer's supplemental draft was denied by the NFL.
The former Tigers star is receiving a show of support from LSU offensive coordinator Cam Cameron, though. NFL Media senior analyst Gil Brandt tweeted Friday that Cameron phoned him just before the first round of the draft Thursday night to vouch for Collins, saying "He was perfect for us."
NFL Media's Albert Breer reported that Collins' attorney contacted the security directors of all 32 NFL clubs Thursday to update them on Collins' situation. Collins left Chicago Wednesday, shortly after participating in the NFL's Play 60 event, without speaking to the media.
Cameron, who coached as an assistant in the NFL for more than a decade with four different clubs, oversaw the LSU offense for Collins' final two collegiate seasons as a left tackle. Collins won the Jacobs Trophy as the top offensive lineman in the SEC last season, and had been considered a first-round talent for the draft who could play either guard or tackle at the pro level.
Some of the teams that have a draft need on the offensive line and did not choose an offensive lineman in the first round include the Miami Dolphins, New England Patriots, Indianapolis Colts, Tennessee Titans, St. Louis Rams and Kansas City Chiefs. According to Breer, however, Collins' wait might carry into the draft's third day (Rounds 4-7).