Jalen Carter Only Visiting Teams With Top 10 Picks, Which Is Not Smart

NFL Combine
NFL Combine / Stacy Revere/GettyImages

Georgia defensive lineman Jalen Carter was once a lock to be selected in the top five of the 2023 NFL Draft. Then, some things happened. He left the combine to turn himself in on reckless driving charges related to a crash that killed a teammate, and followed that up by tanking his pro day. So, yeah, his stock has taken quite a hit. Apparently, none of that has changed his expectations for the draft.

ESPN's Adam Schefter is reporting Carter will only be meeting with teams that have top 10 picks in this year's draft. He and agent Drew Rosenhaus are confident he'll be selected within the first 10 picks and see no need to meet with other teams. That's more than a tad presumptuous.

Look, Carter might be a top 10 pick. In fact, I wouldn't be shocked if he is. But by only limiting himself to the teams in the top 10, he's killing a lot of opportunity here. If he met with everyone -- as would be the smart thing -- he could convince a team outside the top 10 to jump up and grab him via trade during the draft. Now that may never happen because he's refused to meet with them.

Additionally, meeting with execs from around the league could help change the perception of his character issues. If a number of decision-makers decided he wasn't a bad kid, that would almost certainly circulate around the league, inflating his stock in the process. But he and Rosenhaus have cut off any chance of that happening. It's just not a smart strategy.

In the end, Carter has limited his options by only talking to teams in the top 10. We'll see if it works out for him.