Charles Davis knows his way around the SEC. He played four years for Tennessee from 1983-86, totaling 13 interceptions in college.
Now, he’s analyzing the game and recently put together a mock draft for NFL.com.
Davis didn’t forget where he came from, predicting 10 SEC players would be selected in the first round. Here’s how he sees it playing out in the 2018 NFL Draft.
4. Minkah Fitzpatrick (Alabama): Cleveland Browns
9. Roquan Smith (Georgia): Oakland Raiders
19. Calvin Ridley (Alabama): Dallas Cowboys
21. Da’Ron Payne (Alabama): Buffalo Bills
24. Christian Kirk (Texas A&M): Carolina Panthers
26. Isaiah Wynn (Georgia): Atlanta Falcons
27. Rashaan Evans (Alabama): New Orleans Saints
28. Derrius Guice (LSU): Pittsburgh Steelers
31. Ronnie Harrison (Alabama): New England Patriots
32. Donte Jackson (LSU): Philadelphia Eagles
He clearly likes the teams in the back half of the round to go with SEC players, but he still lists two ― Fitzpatrick and Smith ― among the top 10 selections. Both played in the National Championship Game and are well-deserving of those slots, given the postseason hardware they took home.
Smith won the Butkus Award as the nation’s best linebacker, while Fitzpatrick took home the Bednarik and Thorpe awards for his work on Alabama’s defense.
It won’t be a surprise if Alabama sees the most players shake Roger Goodell’s hand on draft night. The Crimson Tide have five projected as first-round picks in Davis’ mock draft.