There are four players eligible for the 2014 Supplemental Draft, which is scheduled to be held on Thursday, July 10. Those players include New Mexico wide receiver Chase Clayton, North Carolina linebacker Darius Lipford, Virginia University of Lynchburg DL Lakendrick Ross, and SMU RB Traylon Shead. Ross recently held a workout in front of 11 teams on July 7 -- the Bears, Cardinals, Chiefs, Colts, Eagles, Falcons, 49ers, Patriots, Raiders, Rams and Texans. Ross, 21, measured at 6-foot-4, 366 pounds during Monday's workout. Shead, who didn't participate in spring practices at SMU, nor was he listed on the team's depth chart, decided to enter the Supplemental Draft after posting 197 yards rushing, three touchdowns in four games.
The Supplemental Draft carries slightly less intrigue than it's more popular cousin, the NFL draft. The interest is usually reserved for draft experts who are bored, bored, bored this time of year. There is some manufactured drama -- Josh Gordon offered it in the 2012 Supplemental Draft... but not nearly enough as he has this offseason. There wasn't a pick in last year's supplemental draft.
These drafts typically offer players an out after finding themselves in some form of trouble (legally, athletically, or academically) after the NFL draft. OSU quarterback Terrelle Pryor decided to declare after facing an NCAA investigation in 2011. A year before that, running back Harvey Unga was expelled from BYU and nose tackle Josh Brent was academically ineligible at Illinois. It's usually something.
Since 1977, there has been one Hall of Famer (wide receiver Cris Carter) and seven Pro Bowlers selected from the Supplemental draft.
The process is simple. Prior to the Supplemental Draft, the NFL will hold a draft lottery -- that's right, just like the NBA and NHL. The worst teams will be weighted more to receive better opportunities to pick higher; the Texans will have their name in the drawing 32 times, the Rams have 31, the Jaguars with 30, so forth and so on. The draft starts with the ten worst teams (based on the 2014 NFL draft order) in the first drawing, picking the order to select first through tenth (the Texans can't do worse than tenth). There's a second drawing with the ten worst teams after that. The third drawing will feature the 12 playoff teams from last season.
Once that's determined, the draft starts. Teams submit bids for certain players in certain rounds without knowledge of what other teams are doing, much like a blind auction. The highest bid, wins. The price that's paid comes in the form of a draft pick. A team that successfully bids on a player in the Supplemental Draft, loses that corresponding round's pick in next year's draft. For example, the Bengals sacrificed their third-round pick in the 2007 NFL Draft after gabbing linebacker Ahmad Brooks in the third-round of the 2006 Supplemental Draft.
We'd be shocked if the Bengals even kept the memo on this year's supplemental draft (aka, move along, nothing to see here, quick looking at me!).