COLUMBUS, Ohio – Three more Ohio State Buckeyes were chosen in the second and third rounds of the 2017 NFL Draft Friday night, increasing Ohio State’s three-round total to six players and its two-draft total – including 2016 – to 18 players selected. The draft is being held this year in Philadelphia along the Ben Franklin Parkway and in front of the Philadelphia Museum of Art.
Things started hopping early for the Buckeyes in Round 2 Friday when hybrid receiver/runner Curtis Samuel was selected with the 40th overall pick of the draft, by the Carolina Panthers. Linebacker Raekwon McMillan went next in the second round, No. 54 overall to the Miami Dolphins, and center Pat Elflein went early in the third round, with pick No. 70 to the Minnesota Vikings.
Samuel, from Brooklyn, N.Y., played three seasons with the Buckeyes (40 games and 13 starts) and is the only player in school history with at least 1,000 career rushing and receiving yards (1,286 rushing yards and 15 touchdowns plus 107 receptions for 1,249 yards and nine scores). He was the only player in the nation in 2016 with at least 700 rushing and 700 receiving yards. He was named a first-team All-American (Associated Press & The Sporting News) with 771 rushing yards, eight touchdowns and a 7.9 per carry average, and he also had 865 receiving yards off 74 receptions with seven more touchdowns.
McMillan, a 6-2, 243-pounder from Hinesville, Ga., was Ohio State’s leading tackler the past two seasons with 102 in 2016 and 119 in 2015, and he finished with 270 career tackles, 17 tackles-for-loss and nine pass break-ups. He was a first-team all-Big Ten selection and a second-team All-American as both a sophomore and a junior, and he was a semifinalist for both the Butkus Award and the Lott IMPACT Trophy in 2016. He started 26 games for the Buckeyes, played in 40 and was a team captain in 2016.
Elflein was a unanimous first-team All-American in 2016 who won the Rimington Trophy as the nation’s outstanding center. The 6-3, 300-pounder from Pickerington, Ohio, made the move to center as a fifth-year senior. He played in 55 games, was a three-year starter and finished with 42 starts, including 41 consecutive starts to close his career. He was named all-Big Ten Conference three consecutive years – twice at guard and once at center – and was Big Ten’s Rimington-Pace offensive lineman of the year in 2016. He graduated in May 2016 with his degree in communications.
The 18 draft picks over the last two seasons are one off the two-draft high of 19 for the Ohio State program, set during the 2003 and 2004 drafts. Ohio State has never had eight first-round draft picks over two drafts as it has done in these past two drafts.
Ohio State Buckeyes selected in the 2017 NFL Draft include:
- CB Marshon Lattimore – 1st Round, No. 11 overall pick by the New Orleans Saints
- SAF Malik Hooker – 1st Round, No. 15 by Indianapolis Colts
- CB Gareon Conley – 1st Round, No. 24 by the Oakland Raiders
- H-Back Curtis Samuel – 2nd Round, No. 40 by the Carolina Panthers
- LB Raekwon McMillan – 2nd Round, No. 54 by the Miami Dolphins
- C Pat Elflein - 3rd Round, No. 70 by the Minnesota Vikings