The two sides of Austin Carr, the well-rounded walk-on turned NFL draft sleeper

Players who join high-profile college football programs as walk-ons rarely get the chance to become starters, and only a fraction of those select few ever play well enough to garner a shred of NFL attention. You'd think it'd take preternatural skill and a singular focus on football to beat those odds, but while Northwestern wide receiver Austin Carr has never been short on talent, his heart has always been pulled in several directions beyond the gridiron.

In the first episode of Draft Season, SI's narrative podcast series chronicling the 2017 NFL draft through the eyes of the most unique prospects on the board, Joan Niesen goes inside the mind of a projected late-round pick who wears many hats: musician, comedian, master's student, part-time philosopher … and reigning Big Ten Receiver of the Year.

“I’ve said this before when NFL scouts interviewed me: Austin, you're so interested in so many things. What makes you think that we're going to trust that you'll have complete devotion to football?” Carr says.Football is the only lifelong dream that I've ever had.”

Draft Season returns for a second season to take you behind the scenes of the crazy and fascinating world of the NFL draft. Each pick is a player. Each player has a story. Those stories will be told over the next month, all the way up until the first team officially goes on the clock on April 27. You can subscribe to Draft Season on iTunes or on SoundCloud to get each new episode as it is released.

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