Tag: NFL Draft

Illinois State's Robinson goes undrafted, will sign as a free agent

Illinois State's Robinson goes undrafted, will sign as a free agent
Prior to this weekend’s NFL Draft, veteran Illinois State head coach Brock Spack remained confident that James Robinson will make an NFL roster — whether the Redbirds’ star running back was selected in the seven-round event or went the undrafted free agent route. Robinson’s name was not called in this year’s three-day draft, meaning that he... Read more »

SIU safety Chinn taken in NFL Draft's second round

SIU safety Chinn taken in NFL Draft's second round
The Carolina Panthers made sure that Southern Illinois safety Jeremy Chinn was a second-round pick in Friday night’s NFL Draft. The Panthers, under the direction of general manager Marty Hurney and head coach Matt Rhule, traded up with Seattle to acquire the final pick of the second round and land the versatile Chinn. “We just... Read more »

2020 NFL Draft Preview: Jeremy Chinn, S, Southern Illinois

2020 NFL Draft Preview: Jeremy Chinn, S, Southern Illinois
At the beginning of March, Pro Football Focus projected Chinn as a sixth-round selection for the NFL Draft. Oh, how times have changed. Fueled by impressive performances in Senior Bowl workouts, at the NFL Scouting Combine and through interviews with prospective teams, Chinn has risen up draft boards. Dane Brugler of The Athletic has Chinn rated... Read more »
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2020 NFL Draft Preview: James Robinson, RB, Illinois State

2020 NFL Draft Preview: James Robinson, RB, Illinois State
James Robinson left a legacy for both the Illinois State and the Missouri Valley Football Conference. The next question being pondered is the mark the Rockford native leaves in pro football. From all indications, Robinson will become the fifth Redbird drafted under head coach Brock Spack, who was hired by ISU in 2009. Robinson not... Read more »

Kansas City Chiefs take WIU's Saunders in NFL Draft

Kansas City Chiefs take WIU's Saunders in NFL Draft
The Kansas City Chiefs selected Western Illinois defensive lineman Khalen Saunders Friday night in the third round of the NFL Draft. Saunders, who measured at 6-foot and 324-pounds at the NFL Combine in January, was the 84th overall pick. Saunders is first Leatherneck drafted since Dallas took linebacker Jason Williams in 2009.   “Believe in yourself.... Read more »

Western's Saunders rising up NFL draft boards

Western's Saunders rising up NFL draft boards
Western Illinois defensive tackle Khalen Saunders will likely be the state’s lone FCS representative in this week’s NFL Draft. Moreover, while several media outlets and scouting services have tabbed the 6-foot, 324-pounder as a likely mid-round pick, Saunders’ impressive Senior Bowl and the NFL Combine performances have moved him much higher on the boards. Last... Read more »
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Will Illinois State's Harris be the latest Land of Lincoln FCS player drafted?

Will Illinois State's Harris be the latest Land of Lincoln FCS player drafted?
With this year’s NFL Draft taking place today through Saturday at the home of the Dallas Cowboys, a group of former Illinois FCS players are hopeful of being lassoed by one of the league’s 32 teams. If their names are not called for any of the 256 selections over seven rounds, signing as an undrafted... Read more »

Throwback Thursday: Ryan Pace, EIU defensive lineman & Bears' general manager

Throwback Thursday:  Ryan Pace, EIU defensive lineman & Bears' general manager
Football fans know Ryan Pace as the Bears’ general manager who sent shock waves through the recent NFL Draft by trading up one spot to snag quarterback Mitchell Trubisky. But how well do fans know Pace, born in 1977, the year Walter Payton was the NFL’s Most Valuable Player and Man of the Year? Friday... Read more »

Throwback Thursday: Strange circumstances end WIU first-round pick's career

Throwback Thursday:  Strange circumstances end WIU first-round pick's career
Fifty-five years ago Leroy Jackson was the 11th overall pick in the 1962 NFL draft, the highest selection ever of a player from Western Illinois University. Originally chosen by the Cleveland Browns, Jackson was part of a multi-player trade that landed the running back with the Washington Redskins. The Chicago Heights native had been a... Read more »
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State FCS NFL Draft History Capsule

The following is a capsule featuring highlights of the NFL Draft over the histories of the Illinois Football Championship Subdivision programs. Western Illinois Leathernecks Overall NFL Draft Picks:  30 Picks by Decade: 1960s-2; 1970s-12; 1980s-6; 1990s-6; 2000s-4 Highest: Leroy Jackson, 11th overall (Round 1), 1962 First:  Leroy Jackson, 1962 Most Recent:  Jason Williams, 2009 Southern... Read more »