Before the season started, I wrote an article examining which 76ers I thought could make solid NFL players. After watching this team for a few weeks, I realized there were a few deserving players that I left off my list.
Tony Wroten – Flex
No one knew what to expect from the former first round pick after barely playing in Memphis, but Wroten has shown he brings an intensity to the court that energizes the 76ers off the bench. He is a max-effort player, sometimes to a fault, with a spark-plug mentality that could easily translate to the grid-iron.
The question is: where would he play? He has great size for a point-guard and off the charts athleticism, setting him up to be a dynamic, versatile player. Think Percy Harvin without the injury problems. He could play out of the slot or the backfield, creating mismatches all over the field. Get him the ball in open space and, wooops! Linebackers are falling all over themselves in his wake.
But wait! We’ve barely scratched the surface. Wroten has the potential to be the rare two-way player. He is already a plus defender in the NBA, and those same skills could make him a lock-down corner, or punishing free safety. In this alternative universe I have no trouble seeing him run away with the Heisman.
Daniel Orton – DT
This big guy wasn’t even on the Sixers when I made this list the first time, but this kid is a brute in the best sense of the word. He’s not incredible skilled, but he’s a big strong body that hustles (a breath of fresh air compared to the Slow-Mo Kwame Brown Show). Orton has great upper body strength on display each time he rips down a rebound and throws around those menacing ‘bows. When he scrambles for loose balls, he goes in head first.
He could be a terror at Defensive Tackle, absorbing two offensive lineman and shutting down passing lanes.
Watching the Eagles defense, I honestly don’t know why Chip Kelly doesn’t make a call to these guys right now. But lucky for us Sixer fans, they wouldn’t think twice before turning him down.
Why? Because they’re living the good life in the NBA, and they’re not egomaniacal idiots like Lebron James. Across the board, NBA players are paid as well or better than they’re NFL counterparts, and the only brain damage they risk is watching Evan Turner’s shot selection.
What do you think? Am I nuts? Did I miss someone? Let me know in the comments section or yell at me on twitter @rj infantino.