Bad news continues to roll in for Irish fans early in 2014. Sports illustrated is reporting that Notre Dame tight end Troy Niklas will forgo his final year of eligibility and declare for the 2014 NFL Draft. This news comes on the same day that news broke that Davaris Daniels had been suspended for the Spring semester for academic reasons and less than a week after Stephon Tuitt also declared for the draft. This move by Niklas is very surprising to Irish fans, as he told reporters following the Pinstripe Bowl that he would be returning for his senior season.
With Niklas declaring for the draft, it will be interesting to see where he may land. His size and catching ability will surely catch the attention of NFL teams and I have no doubt he will continue the tradition of Irish tight ends succeeding in the NFL. I really think another year of college ball could have made him a 1st round draft pick next season but even so he should still be taken somewhere in the 2nd to 3rd round area. If I had to guess he will be anywhere from the 2nd to the 4th tight end taken. Eric Ebron from North Carolina will most likely be the first. Niklas finishes he career at Notre Dame with 573 yards receiving and 6 touchdowns.