The NFL's supplemental draft came and went Thursday without a single player getting selected for the third time in four years.
With multiple teams represented at Pro Day workouts for Calgary (Canada) wide receiver Rashaun Simonise, Purdue nose guard Ra'Zahn Howard and Mississippi cornerback Tee Shepard in recent weeks, there had been some speculation that at least one of them would be drafted, just as former Clemson offensive tackle Isaiah Battle was in the fifth round last year by the then-St. Louis Rams.
Instead, the league's 32 teams opted to pass on the trio of prospects, as well as Virginia Tech long snapper Eddie D'Antuono, Sam Houston State running back Jalen Overstreet and Concordia (Ala.) edge rusher Cameron Walton - each of whom is now considered a street free agent and eligible to sign with any club.
Simonise, as a native Canadian, is also eligible for the CFL supplemental draft next spring.
The 6-foot-5, 200-pound Simonise was far and away the most productive of the six prospects. He led all Canadian college receivers with 11 touchdowns among 65 catches for 1,306 yards overall last season. Like several of this year's prospects, Simonise declared for the supplemental draft because he was ruled ineligible for 2016 due to academics.
The supplemental draft is very different from the media bonanza that occurs each spring. It is carried out via e-mail among teams and is not televised. The selection order is different as well.
The teams are slotted into three groups based on their won/loss percentage the previous year and are then placed in a lottery with the official order generally not being released to the public. According to a league source, the Miami Dolphins "won" this year's supplemental draft lottery and had the first pick Thursday. The Dolphins were followed by the San Diego Chargers, Tennessee Titans, New York Giants and Dallas Cowboys. Tennessee originally held the first pick of April's draft, before trading it to the Rams, who then selected California quarterback Jared Goff.
Rather than the commissioner announcing selections, teams interested in selecting a player contact the league via email with a list of the prospects they would draft and the round in which they would take them. If awarded the player, the team loses its corresponding selection in next spring's draft.
The supplemental draft was originally created for players who had lost their eligibility between the primary NFL Draft in April and the beginning of the next season. Typically, they are players who encountered off-field issues or failed to keep up with their academic obligations, such as the case with Howard.
A total of 43 players have now been selected since the draft's inception in 1977 and there have been some very good players selected during that time, including Hall of Fame wide receiver Cris Carter (Philadelphia, 1987) as well as quarterback Bernie Kosar (Cleveland, 1985), fellow wide receivers Rob Moore (New York Jets, 1990) and Josh Gordon (Cleveland, 2012) and nose guard Jamal Williams, a three-time All-Pro in San Diego.
--Rob Rang is a Senior Analyst for NFLDraftScout.com, a division of The Sports Xchange distributed in partnership with CBSSports.com.