The deadline to declare for the NFL draft has passed so let us take a look at the ACC players who have decided to turn pro:
Florida State WR Kelvin Benjamin
North Carolina C Russell Bodine
Clemson DB Bashaud Breeland
Clemson WR Martavis Bryant
North Carolina TE Eric Ebron
Florida State RB Devonta Freeman
Florida State DT Timmy Jernigan
Syracuse RB Jerome Smith
Clemson WR Sammy Watkins
Florida State RB James Wilder Jr.
Mel Kiper Jr. has several of these underclassmen going in the first round in his first edition of the 2014 NFL mock draft:
No. 5 Sammy Watkins to Oakland
No. 14 Timmy Jernigan to Chicago
No. 16 Eric Ebron to Baltimore
No. 22 Kelvin Benjamin to Philadelphia
Kiper took into account draft needs for each team when making his selections. To that end, he has Ebron rated higher on his Big Board, which ranks the Top 25 best players available in the draft. Kiper lists Ebron No. 7 there, and has called him "A QB's best friend." Bryn Renner would know.
Jernigan also is rated higher on the Big Board at No. 12 overall.
The NFL draft evaluation process has only just begun so all these mock drafts and big boards will change between now and the draft, which is in May. One constant, at this point, is Watkins as the top-rated ACC player headed into the draft. Barring unforeseen circumstances, his place at the top is not expected to change.