Matt Barkley Submits NFL Evaluation Paperwork, Sounds Like Maybe He's Thinking About Leaving USC Early For the NFL

The NFL evaluation paperwork submission is SOP, so there’s no point in reading much into that. But if you are the type who likes to try and read between the lines, here’s a quote from USC QB Matt Barkley to Gary Klein of the LA Times about the NFL:

“If I were to leave it would be due to the fact that I would be a top-five pick, a top-10 pick, something I’ve dreamed of, something I’ve always wanted to happen,” he said. “I think if I were to go it would be just that time in my life where I finished well at USC and I’m ready to move on.

Barkley is already widely considered to be a Top 10 pick, so he’s gone, right?

Before the season, a few pundits had questions about his arm strength and size, but Barkley won them over with a brilliant season at USC, leading a young team to a 10-2 mark. Barkley’s numbers: 3,528 yards, 69 percent completions, 39 TDs, only seven interceptions. You have to love his progression in virtually every category: He’s gotten more accurate each year, his QB rating has gone up each year, and his TDs have gone up while his picks have gone down. He’s a smart QB who at one point I thought could end up in Miami with the No. 2 pick.

The only problem now is the way the Top 10 is shaking out. After Luck goes first, who needs a QB? The Vikings (2-9) aren’t taking one after drafting Christian Ponder. The Rams (2-9) aren’t taking one with Sam Bradford’s big contract. The Panthers (3-8) have Cam Newton. The Jags (3-8) just gave 1st round money to Blaine Gabbert. It’s possible that the Dolphins (3-8) could slide out of the top five, and maybe, the Top 10. The other teams in the mix for Barkley: Cleveland (4-7), Seattle (4-7), Washington (4-7).[LA Times]

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