Three More Rebels Chosen on Day Three of NFL Draft
Chad Kelly
April 29, 2017

Ole Miss NFL draft history

PHILADELPHIA, Pa. – Three Rebels were selected during Saturday’s final two rounds of the NFL Draft, giving Ole Miss four total draft picks in 2017.

Ole Miss defensive players D.J. Jones and Derrick Jones – no relation – were selected just minutes apart with the 198th overall pick (San Francisco 49ers) and 204th overall pick (New York Jets), respectively, during the sixth round. And then in the last pick of the entire draft (No. 253 in the seventh round), the Denver Broncos selected Rebel quarterback Chad Kelly

D.J., a defensive tackle from Greenville, South Carolina, was a force along the line for the Rebels during his two years after transferring from East Mississippi Community College. The strongest player on the Rebel squad, he started every game at nose tackle as a senior and compiled 70 tackles, 8.5 TFLs and six sacks over two seasons.

Derrick saw action as a receiver, defensive back and special teamer throughout his four-year career, landing on the defensive side for most of his senior year. The Eupora, Mississippi, native was second on the team with five passes defended and two interceptions this past season, returning one for a touchdown against Georgia. He recorded career totals of 54 tackles, two interceptions, 11 catches, 175 receiving yards and two touchdown catches.

Kelly broke all kinds of records in his two years as the Ole Miss signal caller after transferring from East Mississippi Community College. The 2016 Sugar Bowl MVP in the Rebels’ win over Oklahoma State, Kelly set 25 school records in his 22 games as the team’s starter, ranking top 10 in school history in career passing yards (3rd), pass attempts (7th), completions (4th), passing TDs (3rd), total offense (3rd) and TDs responsible for (3rd). The Buffalo, New York, native was a two-time All-SEC selection after leading the league in both passing and total offense in both seasons. He is the second member of his family to make the NFL, joining legendary Buffalo Bills quarterback, uncle Jim Kelly.

Saturday’s trio joined Evan Engram in this year’s Ole Miss draft class. Engram became the school’s 23rd first-round selection when he was picked 23rd overall by the New York Giants on Thursday.

Ole Miss has a great tradition of producing NFL talent, including 290 draft picks and 23 first-round selections. Last year, there were 23 Rebels in the league, including Super Bowl LI winner Brandon Bolden of the New England Patriots.

Ten Rebels have been selected in the last three versions of the NFL Draft, including first-rounders Laremy Tunsil (13th in 2016 to the Miami Dolphins), Laquon Treadwell (23rd in 2016 to the Minnesota Vikings), Robert Nkemdiche (29th in 2016 to the Arizona Cardinals) and Engram (23rd in 2017 to the New York Giants).

Several more Ole Miss players are expected to sign rookie free agent deals in the coming days.

Follow Ole Miss Football on Twitter (@OleMissFB), Facebook and Instagram. For more information, visit www.OleMissSports.com.

 

 

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