The NFL Draft begins tomorrow in Nashville and while there isn’t a likely first round FCS selection coming, there are plenty that will are familiar names to Bison fans over the past couple of years. NDSU is hoping for its first draft pick since 2016 when Carson Wentz and Joe Haeg were each drafted that year. Easton Stick has the best chance to get drafted with Bruce Anderson holding an outside shot. Here are some other names that NDSU has encountered over the past couple of years that likely will be drafted this weekend.
Nasir Adderley – Safety, Delaware – Bison fans may not remember much of Delaware’s team from this past September as this game was decided after the first quarter, but Adderley led the Blue Hens with tackles that day with 12. Adderley is a big man for a safety at 6’0, 200 pounds and is always around the ball, racking up nine interceptions over the last two seasons. He’s had a tremendous draft run up and has become the likely top FCS draft pick for this year’s draft.
Khalen Saunders – Defensive Tackle, Western Illinois – Saunders became a fan favorite during the week of the Senior Bowl, but Bison fans know plenty about him. Easton Stick certainly does. Saunders had 2.5 sacks and 11 tackles in the Leathernecks 34-7 loss to the Bison in mid-October. Saunders is a huge man, 6’1, 324 pounds and is quick for his size. He impressed the scouts in Mobile with his agility and ability to get to the quarterback, he was the first Leatherneck to ever be invited to the Senior Bowl. Saunders was a first team FCS All-American along with first team All-Valley player. Saunders name should be called sometime on Friday.
Jordan Brown – Cornerback, South Dakota State – Brown is another well known name for Bison fans, as he’s been matched up against NDSU wide receivers for the past three years. Brown had two interceptions against Stick, one in Brookings in 2017 and the other in the regular season game in Fargo this past fall, he finished with eight picks and 27 knockdowns. Brown was at the two biggest events for NFL prospects, the Senior Bowl and the NFL Combine, improving his stock at both events. Brown is around 6’0, 200 pounds, which makes him a good size for that spot and a potential early Day 3 draft pick.
Jimmy Moreland – Cornerback, James Madison – Moreland was a fantastic college player for JMU, playing in 56 career games, racking up 18 interceptions in the process. Moreland became a lockdown corner in the Dukes’ championship season of 2016 and was even better in 2017, hauling in eight interceptions. His size may hurt his draft potential at 5’11, 175 pounds, but his football IQ is off the charts. It’s hard to believe JMU has not had a draft pick since 2013, but I think there’s a good chance that drought will end with Moreland this weekend.
Troy Reeder – Linebacker, Delaware – Another Blue Hen makes the list as Reeder has been soaring up draft boards just in the last couple of weeks. Reeder was another impact player for Delaware this season, he had 10 tackles and a forced fumble in the Blue Hens loss in Fargo. Reeder is 6’3, 245 pounds, he’s a transfer from Penn State, who’s been really good the last couple of years. He very well could be selected sometime on Saturday.
Those are just a few names that could be drafted this weekend. Keelan Doss is another name to watch this weekend, the UC Davis standout. The Bison play Davis this year, thankfully Doss is gone. Doss racked up over 13 hundred yards this past season as the Aggies lost in the FCS quarterfinals to Eastern Washington.
The NFL Draft begins tomorrow night on ESPN and WDAY and continues thru Saturday. We’ll have updates here on the blog all weekend long.