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File:Donald Brown.JPG

Donald Brown was the first player in Connecticut Huskies football history to be drafted in the first round.[1]

The University of Connecticut (UConn) Huskies football team has had 39 players selected in the National Football League (NFL) Draft.[Note 1] Two of those selections were in the first round of the draft, both with the 27th overall pick: running back Donald Brown in 2009 and cornerback Byron Jones in 2015.Template:Genref[1][4] A Connecticut football alumnus had been selected in every NFL Draft from 2007 to 2015 and in twelve of the last fourteen NFL Drafts.

Each NFL franchise seeks to add new players through the annual NFL Draft. The draft rules were last updated in 2009. The team with the worst record the previous year picks first, the next-worst team second, and so on. Teams that did not make the playoffs are ordered by their regular-season record with any remaining ties broken by strength of schedule. Playoff participants are sequenced after non-playoff teams, based on their round of elimination (wild card, division, conference, and Super Bowl).[5]

Before the merger agreements in 1966, the American Football League (AFL) operated in direct competition with the NFL and held a separate draft. This led to a bidding war over top prospects between the two leagues. As part of the merger agreement on June 8, 1966, the two leagues would hold a multiple round "Common Draft". Once the AFL officially merged with the NFL in 1970, the "Common Draft" simply became the NFL Draft.[2][3]

The first Connecticut player to be taken in the NFL Draft was Walt Trojanowski in the sixth round of the 1946 NFL Draft. From 1946–1994, the Huskies had fourteen players drafted into the NFL over the span of forty-eight years. The rate at which UConn alumni were selected would significantly increase following the Huskies' upgrade from Division I-AA to Division I-A in 2000.[6][Note 2] Beginning in 2005 and continuing through 2015, Connecticut has had twenty-five players picked over eleven NFL Drafts. In 2009 four UConn alumni were taken in the first two rounds of the draft. The most Connecticut players to be selected in a single NFL Draft was five in 2013, including three in the third round, one in the fourth round, and one in the sixth round.

Player selection

File:Will Beatty Training Camp 2009.jpg

Will Beatty was the first UConn draftee to play for a Super Bowl-winning team: the 2011 New York Giants.[Note 3][Note 4]

File:Dan Orlovsky.JPG

Quarterback Dan Orlovsky, drafted in the 5th round in the 2005 NFL Draft by the Detroit Lions, is as of 2015 Connecticut's longest-serving active alumnus in the NFL.[11]

File:Darius butler patriots 09camp.jpg

Darius Butler was the first UConn alumnus to be selected in the second round of the NFL Draft, in 2009.

American Football League

Year Rnd Pick Overall Player name Position AFL team[Note 5] Notes Refs
1963 4 3 27 Contoulis, JohnJohn Contoulis Tackle New York Jets [12][13]

National Football League

Year Rnd Pick Overall Player name Position NFL team[Note 5] Notes Refs
1946 6 9 49 Trojanowski, WaltWalt Trojanowski Back Washington Redskins
1946 9 4 74 Dropo, WaltWalt Dropo End Chicago Bears [Note 6][Note 7]
1947 24 9 224 Moll, BillBill Moll Back New York Giants
1947 28 4 259 Dropo, MiltMilt Dropo Center Washington Redskins [Note 7]
1958 18 5 210 King, LennyLenny King Back Washington Redskins
1962 11 13 153 Bishop, DaveDave Bishop Back New York Giants
1962 16 3 213 Contoulis, JohnJohn Contoulis Tackle New York Giants [12][13]
1971 4 24 102 Clements, VinceVince Clements Running back Minnesota Vikings [16][17]
1974 11 12 272 Torkelson, EricEric Torkelson Running back Green Bay Packers [18][19]
1980 8 28 221 Walton, TedTed Walton Defensive back Pittsburgh Steelers
1984 4 15 99 Dorsey, JohnJohn Dorsey Linebacker Green Bay Packers [20][21]
1989 9 15 238 Franks, DavidDavid Franks Guard Seattle Seahawks
1992 12 10 318 Benton, CorneliusCornelius Benton Guard Seattle Seahawks
1994 6 29 190 Duckworth, PaulPaul Duckworth Linebacker Green Bay Packers
2005 3 18 82 Fincher, AlfredAlfred Fincher Linebacker New Orleans Saints [22][23]
2005 5 9 145 Orlovsky, DanDan Orlovsky Quarterback Detroit Lions [24][25]
2007 6 21 195 Anderson, DeonDeon Anderson Running back Dallas Cowboys [26][27]
2008 4 1 100 Branch, TyvonTyvon Branch Defensive back Oakland Raiders [28][29]
2008 6 29 195 Thomas, DonaldDonald Thomas Guard Miami Dolphins [30][31]
2009 1 27 27 Brown, DonaldDonald Brown Running back Indianapolis Colts [1][32][33]
2009 2 9 41 Butler, DariusDarius Butler Defensive back New England Patriots [34][35]
2009 2 28 60 Beatty, WillWill Beatty Offensive tackle New York Giants Super Bowl champion (XLVI)[8][Note 3] [8][36][37][38]
2009 2 31 63 Brown, CodyCody Brown Linebacker Arizona Cardinals [39][40]
2010 4 9 107 Easley, MarcusMarcus Easley Wide receiver Buffalo Bills [41][42]
2010 7 42 249 McClain, RobertRobert McClain Defensive back Carolina Panthers [43][44]
2011 5 5 136 Sherman, AnthonyAnthony Sherman Fullback Arizona Cardinals [45][46]
2011 6 1 166 Wilson, LawrenceLawrence Wilson Linebacker Carolina Panthers [47][48]
2011 6 18 183 Todman, JordanJordan Todman Running back San Diego Chargers [49][50]
2011 7 34 237 Lloyd, GregGreg Lloyd Linebacker Philadelphia Eagles [51][52]
2012 2 17 49 Reyes, KendallKendall Reyes Defensive tackle San Diego Chargers [53][54]
2013 3 2 64 Gratz, DwayneDwayne Gratz Defensive back Jacksonville Jaguars [55][56]
2013 3 4 66 Moore, SioSio Moore Linebacker Oakland Raiders [57][58]
2013 3 8 70 Wreh-Wilson, BlidiBlidi Wreh-Wilson Defensive back Tennessee Titans [59][60]
2013 4 27 124 Williams, TrevardoTrevardo Williams Defensive end Houston Texans [61][62]
2013 6 33 201 Griffin, RyanRyan Griffin Tight end Houston Texans [63][64]
2014 7 5 220 Stephen, ShamarShamar Stephen Defensive tackle Minnesota Vikings [65][66]
2014 7 38 253 Smallwood, YawinYawin Smallwood Linebacker Atlanta Falcons [67][68]
2015 1 27 27 Jones, ByronByron Jones Cornerback Dallas Cowboys [69][70]
2015 6 10 186 Davis, GeremyGeremy Davis Wide receiver New York Giants [71][72]
2017 2 24 56 Obi Melifonwu Safety Oakland Raiders
2018 6 6 180 Folorunso Fatukasi Defensive tackle New York Jets

Notes

  1. Because of the NFL–AFL merger agreement, the history of the AFL is officially recognized by the NFL and therefore this list includes the AFL Draft (1960–1966). The AFL and NFL held a Common Draft from 1967–1969; UConn had no players selected during that period.[2][3]
  2. In August 2006 the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) changed the name of Division I-A to Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) and Division I-AA to Football Championship Subdivision (FCS).[7]
  3. 3.0 3.1 Beatty played the first ten games for the Giants during the 2011 season but after that was placed on injured reserve due to a detached retina. He did not play in Super Bowl XLVI.[8]
  4. While Beatty was the first Connecticut draftee to play on a Super Bowl-winning team, he was not the first alumnus to be a Super Bowl champion. Nick Giaquinto went undrafted and subsequently won Super Bowl XVII with the Washington Redskins.[9][10]
  5. 5.0 5.1 This is the team that drafted the player, not the player's most recent team.
  6. Walt Dropo was also selected 4th overall in the 1947 Basketball Association of America (BAA) Draft by the Providence Steamrollers.[14] He elected to play in neither league and instead signed a free agent contract with Major League Baseball's Boston Red Sox. He would be named American League Rookie of the Year in 1950.[15]
  7. 7.0 7.1 Walt and Milt Dropo were brothers.[15]

References

General

Specific

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