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Four Ole Miss Rebels selected on second day of NFL Draft

Four Ole Miss Rebels selected on second day of NFL Draft

NASHVILLE — Four Rebels were selected on the second day of the NFL Draft in Nashville, Tennessee, Friday. This is the fourth straight year Ole Miss has had at least four players selected. 

Offensive lineman Greg Little and wide receivers A.J. Brown and D.K. Metcalf were taken in the second round, while tight end Dawson Knox was chosen in the third round. 

The last time two wide receiver teammates were selected in the first two rounds was 2014 when LSU’s Jarvis Landry and Odell Beckham, Jr. were drafted. 

Greg Little – Carolina Panthers

Greg Little vs. A&M (Photo credit: Josh McCoy, Ole Miss)

Little was drafted by the Carolina Panthers, who traded up in the second round to take the Allen, Texas native with the No. 37 overall pick. Little has been an anchor at left tackle the last three seasons for the Rebels, appearing in every game at at the position since his arrival on campus. 

He allowed a pressure on just 2.8 percent of his pass-blocking snaps since 2017, the fourth-best in the class among offensive tackles. Little’s honors and accolades include:

  • 2019 NFL Combine Invitee 
  • 2018 All-America Second Team (Walter Camp, FWAA, Sporting News, Phil Steele, CollegeFootballNews.com)
  • 2018 All-SEC First Team (AP, Coaches) 
  • 2018 Earl Campbell Tyler Rose Award Finalist
  • 2018 Outland Trophy Watch List 
  • 2018 Preseason All-America First Team (The Athletic, Sporting News) 
  • 2018 Preseason All-America Second Team (AP, Lindy’s, Phil Steele, Athlon) 
  • 2018 Preseason All-SEC First Team (Lindy’s, Athlon, Phil Steele) 
  • 2017 All-SEC Second Team (AP, Coaches, Phil Steele)
  • 2017 Week 12 SEC Offensive Lineman of the Week 
  • 2016 Freshman All-America Team (Rivals) 
  • 2016 SEC All-Freshman First Team (Coaches) 
  • 2016 SEC All-Freshman Second Team (Athlon)

A.J. Brown – Tennessee Titans 

AJ Brown with another reception against UT-Martin. (Photo credit: Dan Anderson, The Rebel Walk)

Brown, a second team 2018 All-America by multiple publications, was drafted by the Tennessee Titans with the No. 51 overall pick, becoming the first Ole Miss player ever to be selected by the Titans since 1997 when the franchise moved to Nashville.

A junior out of Starkville, Mississippi, Brown stands as the all-time leading receiver in Ole Miss history with 2,984 yards—in just three seasons. He had 12 100-yard receiving performances during his career, also a program record.

Brown amassed 1,320 yards in 2018, breaking his own single-season school record of 1,252, set last season. He’s the only player in Ole Miss history with two 1,000-yard seasons to his name. Brown also set the Ole Miss single-season receptions record with 85 catches this year.

Brown’s accolades and honors include: 

  • Ole Miss career leader – receiving yards (2,984)
  • Ole Miss career leader – 100-yard receiving games (12)
  • 2019 NFL Combine Invitee
  • 2018 All-America Second Team (FWAA, Phil Steele)
  • 2018 All-America Honorable Mention (CollegeFootballNews.com)
  • 2018 All-America Third Team (AP)
  • 2018 All-SEC First Team (AP, Coaches)
  • 2018 C Spire Conerly Trophy Finalist
  • 2018 Biletnikoff Award Semifinalist
  • 2018 Maxwell Award Watch List
  • 2018 Walter Camp Award Watch List
  • 2018 Ole Miss single-season leader – receiving yards (1,320)
  • 2018 Ole Miss single-season leader – catches (85)
  • 2017 C Spire Conerly Trophy Winner
  • 2017 Biletnikoff Award Semifinalist
  • 2017 All-America Second Team (Phil Steele)
  • 2017 All-America Third Team (AP)
  • 2017 All-SEC First Team (Coaches, AP, Phil Steele)
  • 2017 All-SEC Second Team (Athlon)
  • 2017 Ole Miss single-season leader – receiving yards (1,252)
  • 2017 Ole Miss single-season leader – receiving TDs (11)

D.K. Metcalf – Seattle Seahawks

D.K. Metcalf vs. Wofford. (Photo credit: Josh McCoy, Ole Miss Athletics)

Metcalf became the second member of the Nasty Wideouts drafted when the Seattle Seahawks traded up to grab the Oxford, Mississippi, native with the last pick of the second round and No. 64 overall.

Throughout his career at Ole Miss, D.K.’s big-play ability was remarkable and Rebel fans became accustomed to seeing that on Saturdays in the fall. In 21 games played, he caught 67 passes for 1,228 yards and 14 touchdowns.

He played in the first two games of the 2016 season before suffering a season-sending foot injury.

In 2017, redshirt freshman D.K. started all 12 games and caught 39 passes for 646 yards and seven touchdowns. Before he suffered a neck injury in 2018, Metcalf played in seven games, catching 25 passes for 569 yards and 5 touchdowns–averaging a whopping 21.7 yards per catch his final season.

One of D.K.’s most impressive stat is the 18.3 yards he averaged per catch throughout his career at Ole Miss. 

Metcalf leaves Ole Miss after having notched a myriad of accolades.

  • 2019 NFL Combine Invitee
  • 2018 Biletnikoff Award Watch List
  • 2018 Preseason All-SEC Second Team (Phil Steele)
  • 2018 Preseason All-SEC Third Team (Lindy’s)
  • 2017 SEC All-Freshman Team (Coaches)

Dawson Knox – Buffalo Bills

Dawson Knox (Photo: Josh McCoy, Ole Miss)

The Buffalo Bills also traded up in the draft to add a Rebel, moving up the board to select Knox with a compensatory pick at No. 96 overall.

Arriving in Oxford as a walk-on, Knox worked tirelessly and succeeded in proving himself to the Rebel coaching staff. He put on weight and competed hard every day in practice–and was soon the top TE on the roster by his sophomore season when he caught 24 passes for 321 yards, including a 40-yard catch in the Magnolia Bowl against LSU.

In 2018, his junior season with the Rebels, Knox notched 15 catches for 271 yards, averaging a mind-boggling 18.9 yards per catch. He made numerous big-time grabs, including the pivotal 48-yard catch and run that set up the game-winning touchdown in Little Rock against Arkansas in a come-from-behind win for Ole Miss.

Here are some of his accolades throughout his time at Ole Miss:

  • 2019 NFL Combine Invitee
  • 2018 Mackey Award Watch List
  • 2018 Preseason All-SEC Third Team (Phil Steele)
  • 2017 Burlsworth Trophy Watch List (Athlon, Sporting News, Phil Steele)
  • Awarded the Park Stevens Memorial Award as the spring’s top walk-on. 

Congratulations to these NFL Rebels!

About The Author

Evelyn Van Pelt

Evelyn has covered sports for over two decades, beginning her journalism career as a sports writer for a newspaper in Austin, Texas. She attended Texas A&M and majored in English. Evelyn's love for Ole Miss began when her daughter Katie attended the university on a volleyball scholarship--and continued as she watched Katie receive three degrees from Ole Miss, culminating with her Pharm D. in 2012. Evelyn, a member of the FWAA, USBWA and the NCBWA, has covered Rebel sports for numerous outlets. In addition to working for The Rebel Walk, Evelyn is a sports writer for a newspaper in Texas.

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