Archer over Mack? In 2009, the answer might have been yes

USA TODAY Sports

The small world of recruiting is often compared in retrospect. That comparison often shows how far some players can go in just four years. Raiders outside linebacker Khalil Mack was the fifth overall pick in the 2014 draft and there was a time he and Steelers RB Dri Archer were after-thoughts in recruiting.

Would you have taken Kent State running back Dri Archer over Buffalo linebacker - and fifth overall pick - Khalil Mack?

No, of course not, what kind of stupid question is that?

One report says "yes."

It was a situation in which neither Mack, from Fort Pierce, Fla., and Archer, from Laurel, Fla., were lower-tier players on the recruiting food chain (the point of the article is showing the massive gap between where Mack was in terms of recruiting rankings compared to first pick Jadeveon Clowney).

Mack went to Buffalo, Archer went to Kent State and the rest is history. While in high school, Archer did beat Jacksonville Jaguars receiver Denard Robinson in the state championship for the 100 meter dash, having lost to Dentarius Locke, a standout sprinter at Florida State University and Olympic hopeful, having run a sub-10 second 100 meter previously.

Mack took a separate route, turning himself into a legitimate superstar in the making. He was selected fifth overall by the Raiders, and that may have been too low for him. A lot changed in five years, perhaps another switch is in order over the next five years. Wishful thinking, at least.

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