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Florida quarterback Tim Tebow expects to make a decision this week on whether to accept the NFL’s invitation to attend the draft in New York next month, his agent, Jimmy Sexton, said last week.
Invitations are traditionally extended to top draft prospects, who are shown waiting in the green room for their names to be called. Tebow is an unusual case, though. He’s the most famous and most decorated college football player of his era but no shoo-in to be taken in the first round.
Top NFL agents typically advise their clients not to attend in person if they think the player won’t be drafted quickly and will be forced to sit and wait for what may seem like an eternity — something that is great for television ratings but a not-so-great experience for the player.
Gil Brandt, the former head of personnel for the Dallas Cowboys who advises the NFL on invitations, said he called Tebow about three weeks ago. “I said, ‘Tim, if you were invited, would you like to come to the draft?’” Brandt said last week. “He was home in Jacksonville and he said, ‘Let me think about it.’”
Meanwhile, sources said, the NFL has also invited Oklahoma quarterback Sam Bradford, Nebraska defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh, Oklahoma defensive tackle Gerald McCoy, Oklahoma State offensive tackle Russell Okung, Iowa offensive lineman Bryan Bulaga, Tennessee defensive back Eric Berry, Tennessee defensive tackle Dan Williams, Oklahoma offensive tackle Trent Williams, Georgia Tech defensive lineman Derrick Morgan and Penn State defensive tackle Jared Odrick.
Brandt would neither confirm nor deny that the NFL had invited those players, all of whom were ranked as first-round picks by at least one if not all four mock drafts at draft site NFLDraftScout.com. Tebow was not ranked as a first-round pick in any of the four mock drafts last week.
Asked whether he viewed Tebow as a first-round draft pick, Brandt said, “I do,” but added, “I seem to be in the minority.” The first round of the NFL draft moves to Thursday night this year and will be held April 22. The second and third rounds will be April 23, and the fourth through seventh rounds the day after.
Because of the change, Brandt said, the NFL will invite players expected to be drafted in the second round to attend Friday night. He said he would probably begin inviting those players this week.
BEST SIGNS COACHES, BROADCASTERS: Blue Entertainment Sports Television has signed Memphis Grizzlies assistant coach Damon Stoudamire and former NBA player Jeff Hornacek for coaching representation. BEST also signed former MLB player Kenny Lofton for broadcast work.
BEST agents Lon Rosen, Brooks Downing and Jason Charney will represent the clients.
ANDREA KREMER TO OCTAGON: Octagon signed NBC Sports and “Sunday Night Football” sideline reporter Andrea Kremer for representation.
“We look forward to helping her accomplish all her media-related goals while also broadening her profile with opportunities in new and complementary areas,” said Phil de Picciotto, president of Octagon Athletes & Personalities, in a statement. Kremer was represented by IMG.
CAA ADDS BROADCASTERS: CAA Sports has signed NFL analyst Tim Ryan and ESPN college football analyst/insider Joe Schad for representation. A team of CAA agents, led by Trace Armstrong and Andy Elkin, will represent Ryan and Schad.
Ryan, who co-hosts the Sirius/XM Radio show “Moving the Chains,” was represented by Game Plan. Schad was unrepresented.
Liz Mullen can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her on Twitter @SBJLizMullen.