Wilner Hotline – List of 12 players entering the 2022 NFL Draft features Lloyd, London, Thibodeaux and all the top talents

Oregon defensive end Kayvon Thibodeaux (5) AP Photos

The fate of Pac-12 football each fall depends less on NFL Draft decisions made the previous winter than it once did. The creation of free agency … err, the transfer portal … has become the primary driver of offseason roster change.

But draft-fueled departures still matter. And despite a substandard season, the Pac-12 has experienced a significant level of attrition based on declarations made prior to today’s deadline.

By our count, three dozen high-impact players are entering the 2022 draft despite having eligibility remaining.

The exodus is spread fairly evenly across the divisions, schools and sides of scrimmage.

Here’s a Drake London filing paperwork with the NFL; there’s a Kayvon Thibodeaux doing the same.

Here’s a Devin Lloyd moving on; there’s a Trent McDuffie doing the same.

Here’s a Rachaad White; there’s a B.J. Baylor.

Bottom line: All of the players expected to be taken in the first round have declared.

Given current rosters, the conference doesn’t have an obvious top-10 talent returning for next season.

Notes on the names below:

— Because the NCAA granted all players a free year of eligibility in 2020, the situation this winter is a tad more confusing than usual.

Generally speaking, the players who have exhausted their eligibility (i.e., not listed below) are those who competed in the 2017, ’18, ’19 and ’21 seasons and did not take a redshirt in any of them.

— Our list is neither complete nor official. Although today is the deadline to submit paperwork, players have 72 hours to reverse course. The NFL will release the full list of early entries when the window closes.

Additionally, there could be players who have submitted paperwork but not made their intentions known publicly.

— Our list will be updated once everything is official.

Arizona: WR Stanley Berryhill
Comment: On the bright side, the Wildcats had a player talented enough to leave early.

Arizona State: LB Darien Butler, DL D.J. Davidson, OL Donovan West, RB Rachaad White
Comment: White’s loss, while expected, is significant: He was arguably the best all-around back in the conference. Add transfers and players with expired eligibility — cornerback Chase Lucas, for instance — and the Sun Devils have been hit hard by attrition.

Cal: QB Chase Garbers, TE Jake Tonges
Comment: We’re trying to imagine Cal’s 2022 season if Garbers had returned and, honestly, it’s tough to see how his efficiency (or the offense generally) is markedly better. The time for a change is right for Garbers and the program.

Colorado: LB Carson Wells
Comment: Colorado will feel the impact of Wells’ departure, particularly in combination with Christian Gonzalez transferring and Nate Landman using up his last ounce of eligibility.

Oregon: S Verone McKinley, OLB Kayvon Thibodeaux, WR Devon Williams, CB Mykael Wright
Comment: The level of attrition we’d expect given the recruiting ratings and on-field performance. Thibodeaux is a strong candidate to become the Pac-12’s first overall selection since Cal’s Jared Goff in 2016.

Oregon State: RB B.J. Baylor, TE Teagan Quitoriano, LB Avery Roberts
Comment: Baylor’s decision was understandable in that he just completed Year Five in the program, his draft stock has peaked and the potential for injury would loom over ’22. But he was OSU’s workhorse, with 227 carries, and his absence will be felt even though the Beavers possess a deep running back room.

Stanford: DL Thomas Booker, DT Dalyn Wade-Perry
Comment: Two departures at the same position group won’t help a defense that couldn’t stop the run in 2021. Booker could be a Day Two selection given his size (310 pounds) and versatility along the front.

UCLA: OT Alec Anderson, TE Greg Dulcich, S Quentin Lake, DT Otto Ogbonnia, WR Kyle Phillips, OT Sean Rhyan
Comment: Few teams were hit as hard with early entries as the Bruins. Dulcich and Phillips were UCLA’s top playmakers in the passing game, Rhyan might be the best offensive line prospect in the conference, and Lake was a stalwart in the secondary.

USC: RB Keaontay Ingram, OLB Drake Jackson, DB Greg Johnson, WR Drake London, LB Kana’i Mauga, OT Jalen McKenzie, CB Chris Steele, CB Isaac Taylor-Stuart
Comment: With the exception of London and perhaps Jackson, we’re not sure how many names on this list will be missed. From our vantage point, it’s filled with players who never reached their potential.

Utah: WR Britain Covey, OL Nick Ford, TE Cole Fotheringham, LB Devin Lloyd, RB TJ Pledger, LB Nephew Sewell, DE Mika Tafua
Comment: The exodus from Salt Lake City is significant and will impact Utah’s outlook for next season. Covey was ready to move on after 17 years in the program, and Lloyd is a lock of the first round. But Tafua, Fotheringham and Ford were slight surprises. The reality for Utah — and one the program will happily accept — is that you need good players to win the conference, and good players are likely to move on.

Washington: CB Kyler Gordon, OT Jaxson Kirkland, CB Trent McDuffie, TE Cade Otton, CB Brendan Radley-Hiles
Comment: No surprises here, but that doesn’t diminish the impact the departures will have on UW, especially in the secondary. Without Gordon and McDuffie, the Huskies would have trotted out one of the worst defenses in the conference.

Washington State: TB Max Borghi, WR Travell Harris, WR Calvin Jackson, CB Jaylen Watson, OT Abraham Lucas
Comment: The Cougars don’t usually get walloped by early entries, so you know it was a memorable season. Although the list is dominated by exits on offense, don’t overlook the impact of Watson’s departure.

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