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Amon-Ra St. Brown believes the draft is ‘one of the worst experiences’ for most players

Lions wide receiver Amon-Ra St. Brown is now the highest-paid wideout in the league after a lucrative contract extension this week. The All-Pro has come a long way from being the No. 112 overall pick in the 2021 NFL draft.

While his amazing success story can be an inspiration for players who don’t hear their names called early in the draft, St. Brown does not recall his draft experience fondly. In a private event in Detroit sponsored by USAA, St. Brown reflected with a decidedly different message than many were expecting. It’s a good cautionary tale for draft prospects.

“A lot of the players in the draft, they feel like it’s going to be the best day of their life,” St. Brown said earnestly. “They’re going to get drafted, go to a team that they want to go to.”

He then changed tone, reflecting back on his extended wait to hear his name called,

“But for like 99 percent of them, it’s one of the worst experiences, believe it or not. The wait is forever. If you’re not going top 10, you’re in that green room and you’re waiting for a long time.”

St. Brown brought up the experience of Will Levis in 2023. Levis was invited to the draft in Kansas City and sat through the entire first round in the green room without being drafted. Levis went in the second round instead. It reminded him of his draft weekend experience back in 2021.

“I was at a family friend’s house celebrating and I never heard my name called on the second day. I had all my friends and family there for the second day. The pressure that I was feeling, waiting to hear my name called, waiting for my phone to ring — it was terrible.”

It’s a good thought to remember when players are unexpectedly falling down later in the draft than expected, or struggling with the pressures of cameras waiting, and waiting, and waiting, to capture reactions.

Story originally appeared on Draft Wire