Sam Spiegelman/SEC Country
Former LSU edge rusher Arden Key probably won't be a first-round pick. But is there a chance?

Is there any chance Arden Key can still be a first-round NFL draft pick?

Nick Suss

LSU football is in the news every day, and the Bayou Bengal Briefing is here to keep you updated with the latest headlines five mornings a week. Join us every Monday through Friday for the biggest news on Tigers football, recruiting, baseball and more. Enjoy!

Arden Key: Day 3 draft pick?

It’s no secret that NFL draft guru Mel Kiper Jr. isn’t the biggest fan of former LSU edge rusher Arden Key. All throughout draft season Kiper has bought low on Key, and this came to an apex on Wednesday when Kiper left Key out of his three-round mock draft entirely. In other words, Kiper doesn’t foresee Key being one of the first 100 players selected in the 2018 NFL Draft, which is borderline ridiculous.

I know Key’s stock has fallen. I’ve gone from calling him a guaranteed top-5 pick to a second-round guy over the past six months. But arguing Key won’t be picked in the top 100 seems rash. This is a guy who terrorized SEC offensive lines in 2016 and came away with 1.5 TFLs, 0.5 sacks and 2 quarterback hurries against Alabama in 2017, and he did that while out of shape.

Key seems to understand the stigma against him. His absence from LSU’s spring and summer activities last season coupled with his injury history and slow 40-yard dash at LSU’s pro day make him a risk. But as Key tweeted Wednesday, he’s trying to talk himself out of the doghouse to NFL decision makers.

So, can Key still work his way into the first round later this month? It’s not impossible. Key said in March that he expects the New Orleans Saints to host a private workout for him, and the Saints don’t have a second-round pick this year. Meaning, if they’re riveted, they might be interested at No. 27 in the first round. The team with the pick two selections before, the Tennessee Titans, also hosted Key on a visit this week.

Do I expect this to happen? Probably not. Key has hurt himself while a lot of prospects have helped themselves this draft season. But it’s not impossible. And if Kiper ends up being right and Key falls out of the first three rounds entirely, I’ll be more shocked than I’ve ever been by an NFL draft revelation.

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Checkin’ in with the ‘croots

Key is the past. What’s up with the future of LSU football? Glad you asked. Here’s a recap of some of the biggest news from the world of LSU recruiting on Wednesday:

Big recruiting news

Three words every LSU fan should be excited to hear are “Hold That Tiger.” Any time coach Ed Orgeron tweets that phrase it means LSU earned another recruiting commitment. And wouldn’t you know it, Orgeron tweeted Wednesday night.

Who is it? Which Tiger is being held? Check back to SEC Country later in the week for the details and be sure to follow SEC Country’s LSU recruiting guru Sam Spiegelman on Twitter for all the latest on LSU recruiting.

In LSU basketball news

The LSU men’s basketball team received its fourth official signee for the Class of 2018 on Wednesday when 5-star power forward Emmitt Williams signed his paperwork. A 6-foot-7 forward from Lehigh Acres, Fla., Williams is the No. 8 power forward and No. 24 prospect in the Class of 2018.

Williams joins 5-star forward Naz Reid, 4-star point guard Javonte Smart and 4-star forward Darius Days as the four men in LSU’s No. 4-ranked recruiting class. With Williams’ signing official, 2018 is the first year LSU has signed multiple 5-star prospects in the same class since Ben Simmons and Antonio Blakeney.

Today in made-up holidays

According to the folks at, April 12 is National Grilled Cheese Sandwich Day, which is the perfect holiday for someone who hasn’t been to the grocery store in two weeks and needs a quick meal.

As someone in that situation as I type, grilled cheese sandwiches are super utile. Of course, I recently ate the last of my cheese in desperation for a quick snack. So, I guess all I can make is a grilled bread sandwich. Or I could go to the store. But that seems like effort. Bread it is.

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