After Burks went this year, Arkansas could produce another first-rounder in 2023

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Jalen Catalon was largely considered the best and most NFL-ready player on the Arkansas football roster ahead of last season.

Treylon Burks’ massive season – 66 catches for 1,104 yards and 11 touchdowns – and massive hands helped lift him into the first round in the NFL draft over the weekend. Catalon, on the other hand, declined early entry into the draft after a shoulder injury limited him to just the first six games of Arkansas’ season.

Catalon still finished eighth on the team with 46 tackles and second in both pass break-ups and interceptions. The Hogs’ safety is now entering his junior season, two years removed from his Freshman All-American season, healthy and with a defensive backfield that appears to be among the SEC’s best.

In CBS Sports’ 2022 draft preview, author Ryan Wilson tabbed Catalon as a first-round pick, going 22nd overall to Cincinnati. That would place him just five picks behind where Burks went this season to Tennessee and would make Catalon the Razorbacks’ third first-round pick since 2009, joining his ex-teammate and offensive lineman Frank Ragnow.

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