2013 NFL draft notebook | Valley hopefuls

Mooney draft history: Cardinal Mooney High graduate John Simon, who was the Big Ten defensive player of the year last year at Ohio State, has a solid chance of being picked in today’s second or third round. (Simon did not respond to multiple interview requests.) Surprisingly, he would be the first draft pick from Mooney since the Buffalo Bills took Vince Marrow (a TE from Toledo) in the 11th round in 1992. Other Mooney draft picks are QB Jim Traficant (Pitt), 29th round by the Steelers in 1962 (No. 276 overall); OT Ed Muransky (Michigan), fourth round by the Raiders in 1982 (91st pick); and OT Don Maggs (Tulane), second round by the Oilers in 1984 supplemental draft (29th pick).

Mooney has two players in the NFL but both went undrafted: S Kyle McCarthy (who signed with the Broncos after the 2010 draft and now plays with the Chiefs) and DT Ishmaai’ly Kitchen (who signed with the Ravens last April and was claimed by the Browns in September, appearing in 15 games). Also, CB Desmond Marrow appeared last summer in two NFL camps, Tampa Bay and Houston, before being released. He signed with the Edmonton Eskimos in February.

Mayock on Simon: NFL network guru Mike Mayock said he thought Simon was worthy of a first-round pick. “I love him,” Mayock said in a conference call last week. “The more coaches watch tape of him, the coaches love him. He’s one of those guys that’s going to appeal to a coach because he’s got a great motor. He’s tough as can be. He’s a captain. He’s got leadership intangibles. The scouts don’t like him as much. The scouts look at certain physical limitations. How long are his arms what did he run? What burst does he have? What position can he play? He’s not big enough to be a defensive end. But do we think he’s athletic enough to be an outside linebacker? I’ve got him in my top 100. That tells you how much I like him. I think he’s a solid first-round pick. And he’s the kind of kid that I put under the heading, find a spot. I don’t care what all your reports say, find a spot. The kid is going to play four special teams and we’ll figure a way to get him on the field. He cares too much, he’s too tough, and he’s the kid I want on my team.”

Draft rewind: The Mahoning Valley had two players selected in last year’s draft: Beaver Local DE Derek Wolfe (second round, Broncos) and Warren Harding RB Dan Herron (sixth round, Bengals). Also, Canfield S Sean Baker appeared on the Buccaneers’ practice squad after going undrafted in April and Warren Harding C Chris Anzevino was released after signing with the Ravens as an undrafted free agent.

Joe Scalzo

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