“African-Americans make up about 70 percent of the NFL’s active players.” In the 2016 NFL draft, only 3 HBCU student-athletes were drafted amongst the 32 NFL teams. This year increased by 4 HBCU students being drafted into the 2017 NFL Draft including Tarik Cohen (North Carolina A&T), Jylan Ware (Alabama St.), Chad Williams (Grambling St.), and Grover Stewart (Albany St. GA).
|Ware, Jylan||OT||6’8″||295||Alabama St.||Pick 13, Round 7 (231)||Raiders||5.20|
|Williams, Chad||WR||6’1″||204||Grambling St.||Pick 34, Round 3 (98)||Cardinals||5.00|
|Cohen, Tarik||RB||5’6″||179||North Carolina A&T||Pick 13, Round 4 (119)||Bears||5.40|
|Stewart, Grover||DT||6’5″||295||Albany St. (GA)||Pick 38, Round 4 (144)||Colts||5.20|
Did you know the first black player drafted by a NFL club was George Taliaferro in the 1940s? Check out the 2017 NFL Draftees from Historically Black Colleges and Universities.
Tarik Cohen (North Carolina A&T)
Chicago Bears drafted Tarik Cohen in Round 4 as pick 13 from North Carolina A&T. Cohen ran 4.42 seconds during the 40-yard dash at the NFL Combine. Is he the new Darren Sproles for the Bears? Check out his speed and quickness.
Jylan Ware (Alabama St.)
Jylan Ware was a four-sport athlete at Valley high school and thought to be too small for football. Ware is now the first player from Alabama State to be drafted to the NFL since 2007. He shares his excitement by stating that “being drafted means that a team thought they had to have me. It’s the ultimate honor for a football player.” The Oakland Raiders will mold this gem into one of the best offensive p in this freshmen class.
Chad Williams (Grambling St.)
The last player drafted from Grambling State was Jason Hatcher from the Dallas Cowboys and now Chad Williams is ending that 11-year-old drought by being the drafted by the Arizona Cardinals. Williams’ college career ended with 210 receptions, 3,062 yards and 28 touchdowns, which helped Grambling to win the 2016 SWAC Championship.
Grover Stewart (Albany St. GA)
With his 6 foot 4 frame, Grover Stewart was destined for the NFL. The Indianapolis Colt drafted Stewart, a Division II defensive tackle, who dominated his senior year with 7.5 sacks and 12 tackles for loss. Though big in size, he is very versatile with some speed and the Colts have “conviction that he’s going to turn into [an excellent] player.”