Draft week is finally upon us, and we are looking at multiple Mountaineers to be drafted by NFL teams. As we ponder the futures of players like Karl Joseph, K.J. Dillon and Wendell Smallwood, we look back at the Mountaineers currently in the NFL who were taken in the first three rounds of previous NFL Drafts.
Adam “Pacman” Jones: Jones was drafted in the 2005 NFL Draft and was taken 6th overall to the Tennessee Titans. Since his start in the NFL, Jones has played 114 games, and has allotted 339 tackles, 14 interceptions, and 6 fumbles. Jones currently plays for the Cincinnati Bengals.
Bruce Irvin: Irvin was taken in the 2012 NFL Draft 15th overall by the Seattle Seahawks. Irvin has played 58 games since joining the NFL in 2012. Irvin has became one of the most noted defenders in the game with his style of play. Irvin has gathered up a total of 131 tackles with 87 being solo tackles. Irvin has also forced 4 fumbles, 2 fumble recoveries, 3 interceptions and 2 touchdowns. Irvin recently signed with the Oakland Raiders after Seattle did not pick up his 5th year option.
Tavon Austin: Austin was selected in the 2013 NFL Draft and 8th overall to the Los Angeles Rams. Since Austin has joined the Rams, they have found how to use him on special teams with Austin with him attempting to run 102 times and gathering up 939 yards and 3 touchdowns and has the third longest punt return in NFL History. Austin also made himself known in the receiver category with 123 receptions, 9 touchdowns and 1,133 yards..
Kevin White: White was taken 7th overall in the 2015 NFL Draft to the Chicago Bears.. He was sidelined his entire rookie season due to a shin injury and it required surgery. The WVU star receiver is expected to practice at full speed during spring minicamps.
Geno Smith: Smith was taken 39th overall in the 2nd round to the New York Jets in 2013. Since then Smith has played 31 games under center. Smith has allotted 493 completions in 852 attempts. He has thrown 27 touchdowns, 5,836 yards and 35 interceptions. He lost his starting job after having his jaw broken after a locker room incident with a teammate before the first preseason game. With Ryan Fitzpatrick’s future with the team uncertain, the Jets may call on Smith to start next season. The 2016 season will be the last year of his rookie contract.
Stedman Bailey: Bailey joined Mountaineer teammate Tavon Austin in the 2013 NFL Draft being selected 92nd overall in the third round to the Los Angeles Rams. Bailey has played 38 games and has 59 receptions, 843 yards, and two touchdowns. He missed the latter part of the past season due to a tragic injury after he was shot in the head in his car while in Florida. Since the incident, he is now working out and hoping to get back on the gridiron as soon as possible.
Charles Sims: Sims was selected in the 3rd round 69th overall by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Sims has played 24 games since joining the NFL. While playing in Tampa Bay, Sims has attempted to rush 173 times and has 714 yards rushing. Last season, the versatile Sims led all NFL running backs in yards per carry. With the offensive-minded Dirk Koetter taking over for head coach Lovie Smith after one season, Sims looks to take more of a role in the Bucs offense next season.
Will Clark: Clark was drafted in the 3rd round, 88th overall by the Cincinnati Bengals. He has five solo tackles in his career. He looks to move up the depth chart this season.
Stay tuned to BlueGoldSports and WVUPros for up to the minute alerts on the up and coming Mountaineers in the 2016 NFL Draft.