Now 31 Former Mountaineers In The NFL

Now 31 Former Mountaineers In The NFL

The Big 12 Conference may have had the first pick of the 2018 NFL Draft, but by the time all seven rounds of the draft were complete, it trailed the other Power 5 conferences in total number of selections.

Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield was the first overall draft pick, going to the Cleveland Browns. But the Big 12 had just 20 players drafted in all this year. That was well behind the conference leader, the SEC with 53. The ACC had 46, while The Big Ten had 32 and the Pac-12 had 30.

Within the Big 12, league champion Oklahoma had the most players drafted with five. Texas had four, while Oklahoma State and TCU each had three. Texas Tech had two players drafted, while West Virginia, Kansas and Kansas State each had one. Iowa State and Baylor were the only Big 12 teams that did not have a player drafted this year.

* * * * * *

Big 12 NFL Draft Picks

First Round
1. Baker Mayfield (Oklahoma), QB, Browns

Second Round

Connor Williams (Texas), OL, Cowboys

James Washington (Oklahoma State), WR, Steelers

Third Round

Mason Rudolph (Oklahoma State), QB, Steelers

Malik Jefferson (Texas), OLB, Bengals

Orlando Brown (Oklahoma), OL, Ravens

Mark Andrews (Oklahoma), TE, Ravens

Joseph Noteboom (TCU), OL, Rams

Fourth Round

Keke Coutee (Texas Tech), WR, Texans

Dorance Armstrong (Kansas), DE, Cowboys

Kyzir White (West Virginia), S, Chargers

Fifth Round

D.J. Reed (Kansas State), CB, 49ers

Tre Flowers (Oklahoma State), S, Seahawks

Michael Dickson (Texas), P, Seahawks

Ogbonnia Okoronkwo (Oklahoma), DE, Rams

Sixth Round

Deshon Elliott (Texas), S, Ravens

Dylan Cantrell (Texas Tech), WR, Chargers

Matt Pryor (TCU), OT, Eagles

Seventh Round

Marcell Ateman (Oklahoma State), WR, Raiders

Travin Howard (TCU), LB, Ravens

* * * * * *

The player pickups by NFL teams didn’t end with the conclusion of the draft.

After 256 players were drafted, NFL teams began the process of signing the undrafted rookies to free agent contracts.

West Virginia has had seven undrafted free agents sign – WR Ka’Raun White (Seattle), LB Al-Rasheed Benton (Detroit), FB Elijah Wellman (Washington), OL Kyle Bosch (Carolina), cornerback Elijah Battle (Arizona), RB Justin Crawford (Atlanta) and LS Nick Meadows (Indianapolis). All but Crawford signed on Saturday, while the running back did not ink a deal with the Falcons until Tuesday.

Besides its league-leading five drafted players, Oklahoma also topped the Big 12 with seven players who have also signed as undrafted free agents. WVU equaled that figure of seven undrafted free agents. TCU had five, while Iowa State, which didn’t have a single draft choice, wound up with four UFA signees, including wide receiver Allen Lazard (Jacksonville), lineman Jake Campos (Dallas) and linebacker Joel Lanning (Dallas). Texas, Texas Tech and Oklahoma State each had three undrafted free agent signees, while Kansas State had two. Kansas and Baylor both had one.

* * * * * *

No other West Virginia-based college besides WVU had a player drafted this year, but there were a number of Mountain State products who did sign undrafted free agent contracts.

Marshall quarterback Chase Linton bypassed his senior season to put his name into this year’s NFL draft. He went unpicked but did sign as a free agent with Kansas City. Thundering Herd kicker Kaare Vedvik (Baltimore), safety C.J. Reavis (Jacksonville) and defensive lineman Davon Durant (Washington) also agreed to free agent contracts.

In addition, two players from Fairmont State also signed as free agents. Linebacker Marcus Porter is headed to Green Bay, and defensive end Quincy Redmon is on his way to Miami.

Shepherd has our players getting looks by the NFL. Linebacker E.J. Norris signed as a free agent with Chicago, offensive lineman Lavonte Hights also has been invited to Chicago’s camp, the Rams’ Connor Jessop will get a chance to participate in Washington’s camp and SU defensive end Miles Humphrey is going to Baltimore.

Concord University also has had one of its players sign a free agent deal, as defensive back Jeremiah Johnson has inked a deal with Indianapolis.

* * * * * *

Some of the former Mountaineers who are veterans of the NFL have recently moved to new locales.

Tavon Austin was traded from the Los Angeles Rams to the Dallas Cowboys. To make room for Austin at the slot receiver position, Dallas then traded Charleston native Ryan Switzer, who played collegiately at North Carolina, to Oakland. Daryl Worley also recently was picked up by Oakland after his arrest in Philadelphia for DUI got him cut by the Eagles. Geno Smith is with the Chargers, Najee Good is with Indianapolis and Terence Garvin has signed with Miami.

With the veterans, the drafting of Kyzir White and the seven undrafted free agent signees, there are now 31 former Mountaineers currently on NFL rosters. There are several other veterans who are free agents at the moment and are seeking new contracts.

Mountaineers In The Pros

Player, Position, Team, Years in NFL

Currently on an NFL roster

Tavon Austin, WR Dallas Cowboys 5

Elijah Battle, DB Arizona Cardinals R

Al-Rasheed Benton, LB Detroit Lions R

Kyle Bosch, OL Carolina Panthers R

Will Clarke, DL Tampa Bay Buccaneers 5

Antonio Crawford, DB Pittsburgh Steelers 1

Justin Crawford, RB Atlanta Falcons R

Rasul Douglas, DB Philadelphia Eagles 1

Maurice Fleming, DB Tampa Bay Buccaneers 1

Terence Garvin, LB Miami Dolphins 5

Shelton Gibson, WR Philadelphia Eagles 1

Mark Glowinski, OL Indianapolis Colts 3

Najee Goode, LB Philadelphia Eagles 6

Jarrod Harper, DB Jacksonville Jaguars 1

Bruce Irvin, LB Oakland Raiders 6

Karl Joseph, DB Oakland Raiders 2

Nick Kwiatkoski, LB Chicago Bears 2

Nick Meadows, LS Indianapolis Colts R

Noble Nwachukwu, DL Seattle Seahawks 1

Charles Sims, RB Tampa Bay Buccaneers 4

Quinton Spain, OL Tennessee Titans 3

Adam Pankey, OL Green Bay Packers 1

Wendell Smallwood, RB Philadelphia Eagles 2

Geno Smith, QB San Diego Chargers 4

Quinton Spain, OL Tennessee Titans 3

Keith Tandy, DB Tampa Bay Buccaneers 6

Elijah Wellman, FB Washington Redskins R

Daryl Worley, DB Oakland Raiders 2

Ka’Raun White, WR Seattle Seahawks R

Kevin White, WR Chicago Bears 3

Kyzir White, DB San Diego Chargers R

Currently free agents

Mario Alford, WR Chicago Bears 3

Don Barclay, OL Detroit Lions 6

Adam Jones, DB Cincinnati Bengals 11

Marquis Lucas, OL Tampa Bay Buccaneers 2

J.T. Thomas, LB New York Giants 5

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