May 6, 2014 7:14:52 PM
STARKVILLE -- According to a man with over 30 years of experience as a NFL executive, without a legal decision even rendered yet, pro franchises will likely know their professional answer to having Charles Siddoway on their draft boards.
The former Mississippi State offensive lineman was arrested April 23 on multiple felony charges including residential burglary and robbery by threats and that action may leave the decision strictly in the hands of a team's security department.
"When something like that happens, teams immediately leave the answering of the legal and criminal questions to its security department," said Bill Polian, a former NFL general manager and current ESPN analyst.
Polian, who was the general manager of the Buffalo Bills, Carolina Panthers and Indianapolis Colts, gave The Dispatch MSU Sports Blog a few minutes in a phone interview to explain the protocol of a NFL franchise when such incidents like the Siddoway arrest occur.
An arrest report confirms Siddoway and currently suspended MSU defensive lineman Jordan Washington were arrested by investigators on April 23 with the Oktibbeha County Sheriff's Department.
Investigator Brett Watson said Siddoway and Washington broke into an apartment at Ace 21 apartment complex on Blackjack Road last month and were arrested approximately an hour later. The apartment complex, a popular residents for MSU students and athletes, is located adjacent to the MSU campus.
Siddoway and Washington appeared in Oktibbeha County Justice Court on the morning of April 24 where they each received a $20,000 bond for their two charges, $10,000 for each count. The Dispatch has learned Siddoway was released on bail hours after his initial court date but his case is not likely to be resolved before the first round of the NFL Draft begins Thursday night at 7 p.m. The second and third round will be on Friday and rounds 4-7 will be conducted Saturday.
"All teams have a security department and what a lot of people don't know is they are usually the last group of everybody in the room on draft day to send in their reports," Polian said. "The security department may actually hold all their information until as late as the morning of the draft."
Siddoway started all 26 games in his two-year career at right tackle for MSU and was hoping to be a late round selection in the upcoming NFL Draft or be a undrafted free agent pick up before training camps opened up this summer. The Eugene, Ore. native transferred from California, where he originally signed out of high school, to Butte College, a junior college in Oroville, Calif., and Mississippi State was the third school for Siddoway's college career. He impressed scouts during MSU's pro day workouts enough to get private visit invitations to the Buffalo Bills training facility.
"His chances of being drafted just plummeted," CBSSports.com draft expert Dane Brugler tweeted the night after Siddoway was arrested.
Before the arrest, NFL Media draft analyst Nolan Nawrocki gave Siddoway a rating of a priority free agent that translates to him being a "50-50 chance to make an NFL roster" and said he was a developmental project...who is still growing into his body."
"He has a lot of untapped potential and the raw physical traits to develop in a zone-blocking scheme and could be better suited inside at guard," Nawrocki wrote in his draft evaluation.
Polian didn't address the Siddoway case specifically but did say in any case regarding a legal matter that an NFL team will have the decision made on whether such a player would be on their draft board at any point this weekend.
"The security department personnel are specifically hired to acquire information that isn't even publicly documented in order for the football decision makers to assess if the player's situation would be considered serious enough to pass on," Polian said.
Each NFL team is required under league rules to contract its own security team mostly consisting of former or retired federal service agents. The focus of theses private security contractors is to protect the members of the team from potential threats and to protect the players from themselves. For example, the Chicago Bears Director of Security Mark Ouellette is a retired U.S. Secret Service agent and former Second Lieutenant in the U.S. Army.
"These guys are in the room and sometimes they don't say a word the entire draft but there's times where you point to him and say 'give me what you got on him' right at the minute you're on the clock to pick," Polian said. "The first thing you learn is how valuable they are because every situation is so different."
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