Vereen may be the steal of the NFL Draft

Jack Satzinger

Brock Vereen led all safeties at February's NFL Combine with 25 reps in the bench press and showcased his speed, running a 4.47 in the 40-yard dash. Before then, he flashed an ability to play either safety or cornerback when the Gophers' defensive back depth took a hit to injuries in 2013. On top of that, he's one of the most cerebral players preparing for next week's NFL Draft. 

And apparently, ESPN's Todd McShay is impressed. 

"He's one of the most underrated players probably in this draft," McShay said in a conference call. "He's fast, he's physical, he's got good awareness. I think a team's going to wind up getting a steal with him."

Vereen, who McShay grades as a third round pick, was blown away by the assessment. At first, all he could say was "Wow."

Entering last season, Vereen was viewed as a player that had a slim chance of being selected late in the draft. Now, he's a near lock to be picked. The Valencia, Calif., native attributed the leap in his draft stock to hard work.

"Anybody who plays under coach [Jerry] Kill can walk away with a blue-collar mindset and a blue-collar work ethic," Vereen said. "I think if you have those two things, you can accomplish anything you want."