2016 NFL Draft, Rounds 4-7

**  At least two players were disappointed to tumble to the fourth round after much higher hopes.

**  Connor Cook was not elected full-time captain by his teammates at Michigan State, causing NFL teams to question his leadership skills.  Coupled with an underwhelming 57.5% completion rate, this led to a precipitous drop in his draft standing.  After many experts projected him to be selected late in the first round or early in the second, Cook fell all the way to the fourth round.  He was the seventh quarterback taken, eventually going to Oakland with the second pick of the fourth round, 100th overall.
**  Said Cook, “Anytime you see another quarterback get drafted in front of you, it hurts.  I’m a competitor.  Obviously, I think I’m one of the best quarterbacks in this draft class, but nothing is ever easy and nothing is ever perfect.”  He added, “Everything will work itself out.”
**  Cook, 6’4″, is the winningest quarterback ever at Michigan State.  He also hold school records for touchdown passes with 71 and passing yardage with 9,194.

**  Andrew Billings of Baylor was thought to be a possible first-round pick.  The defensive tackle fell all the way to #122, deep into the fourth round.  He was taken by Cincinnati.
**  At 6’0″ and over 300 pounds, Billings was dominant on Baylor’s defensive line.  He led the team with 15 tackles for loss and was a first-team AP All-American in 2015.
**  Billings takes solace in knowing that soon-to-be teammate Geno Atkins of the Bengals was also a fourth-round pick in 2010 out of Georgia and became one of the NFL’s best interior linemen.

**  Two more Ohio State players went on the draft’s final day.  Linebacker Joshua Perry was selected at #102 by San Diego, and quarterback Cardale Jones went to Buffalo with the 139th pick – the last of the fourth round.
**  There were 12 Buckeyes drafted this year.  (The 10 in the first three rounds is a record for the modern era  –  1967 to present.)
**  Perry had 105 tackles in 2015, his senior year.  Jones was the quarterback du jour after his whirlwind three games  –  against Wisconsin in the Big Ten title game, Alabama and Oregon in the College Football Playoff  –  led Ohio State to the 2014 national championship.

**  Stanford’s Kevin Hogan was the next quarterback chosen, going to Kansas City in the fourth round.  Baltimore took Navy quarterback Keenan Reynolds in the sixth round, but he will likely make the transition to wide receiver.  Reynolds ran for a Division I record 88 touchdowns during his career at Navy.

**  Notre Dame tackle Sheldon Day went in the fourth round to Jacksonville, which continued to look for defensive help.  He had four sacks and forced a pair of fumbles in 2015.  The Jaguars also picked three defenders in the first three rounds, including a gamble on injured U.C.L.A. linebacker Myles Jack early in the second.

**  Baltimore had a staggering five fourth-round picks.  The Colts took running back Kenneth Dixon from Louisiana Tech.  During his senior season in Ruston, he ran for 1,141 yards.  What may have caught the Ravens’ eye, though, was 467 yards on 34 receptions.  Dixon could play right away.

**  Temple linebacker Tyler Matakevitch went late in the seventh round to Pittsburgh.  He won the 2015 Bronko Nagurski Award as the nation’s most outstanding defensive player, made 493 tackles in his college career in Philadelphia, and was a three-time first team All-American Athletic Conference performer, but the NFL lacks respect for the conference (AAC) he plays in.

**  The Vikings took wide receiver Moritz Boehringer, who played in Germany last season.  He’s the first player to enter an NFL Draft without playing college football.

**  This draft’s Mr. Irrelevant was safety Kalan Reed of Southern Mississippi, who went to Tennessee with the 253rd and last pick.  Take heart, though, Kalan:  Undrafted free agents will make NFL rosters, and your chances are theoretically better than theirs.

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