AUBURN, Ala. — While at Auburn, kicker Daniel Carlson was one of the most popular members of the football team.
Not much has changed for the soon-to-be pro in the last couple of months.
The Colorado Springs, Colo., native is the top kicker in the 2018 draft class, and the three-time Lou Groza Award finalist proved it once again when he confirmed to reporters that he didn’t miss a kick at the NFL combine. Now it’s a waiting game to see which team snags Carlson.
As expected, most of the 32 franchises are interested in the SEC’s all-time leading scorer.
“Yeah, I would say for the most part it’s teams that have a kicker who’s going to be a free agent or have a guy that struggled last year,” Carlson said. “It’s hard to say. I’ve interviewed, especially at the combine, with most every team in some way or another. Some teams are a little more thorough and I already have a few private workouts set up, but it’s going to be hard to tell. As we get closer and closer to draft day I think it’ll be a little more clear.”
NFL.com has Carlson as a fifth- or sixth-round pick. According to WalterFootball.com, Atlanta, the New York Jets, Chicago, Minnesota, Oakland, Miami and Seattle are among the teams that might look to sign a kicker.
In the weeks leading up to the 2018 NFL Draft, Carlson will hang out on the Plains. His draft plans are low-key.
“I’ll probably watch it with some friends and my wife,” Carlson said. “Just praying and hoping — hoping it gets over with soon and someone picks me up sooner rather than later. It’s a long, thorough process, and there’s a lot of nerves waiting to see where I’m going to end up and where I’m hopefully going to continue my career. It’s been good so far and just excited for what God’s got in store for the future.”
Carlson already has spent lots of time reflecting on his outstanding career with the Tigers. He plans on doing a little more of that before he officially jumps to the next level, too, as he also helps his younger brother, Anders, prepare to take over at Auburn.
“What a blessing it was. I didn’t really know what I was getting into when I came out to Auburn,” Carlson said. “Now my little brother’s here, and it’s been just unbelievable getting to meet the people I did. Getting to be a part of the team, break some records along the way. It was really just such an amazing treat. Now I am where I am today. A lot of that’s just because of the people that invested in me at Auburn. The opportunities they gave me.”