Picked ninth, UCLA’s Anthony Barr becomes highest-drafted Bruin since 1996

That late fall was overblown after all.

None of the recent chatter about UCLA linebacker Anthony Barr’s supposed falling stock mattered. The Minnesota Vikings drafted him ninth overall, making him the top Bruin taken since 1996, when Hall of Fame offensive tackle Jonathan Ogden went fourth.

“When you draw it up, does he look like Jason Taylor or what?” said NFL Network’s Mike Mayock, comparing Barr to the six-time Pro Bowler. “That’s kind of how he plays.”

Mayock also pointed out that Barr has only played two years on defense, and will be even better if he learns how to use his hands and develops a counter move.

“He has no idea what he’s doing,” Mayock said. “It’s just natural ability, dip and go. It’s all speed, all natural ability. … But trust me folks, a lot of upside, and (head coach) Mike Zimmer and that staff will get it out of him. He’ll be special.