STARKVILLE, Miss (MSU Athletics/WTVA) - The nation's No. 1 total defense of 2018 left one last indelible image. Mississippi State football shattered a school-record for the most defensive players selected in one draft with four as edge rusher Gerri Green was taken in the sixth round by the Indianapolis Colts on Saturday afternoon.
The Bulldogs finished with a three-day 2019 NFL Draft overall total of five picks, their most since the 2015 draft that produced five. The previous school record for most defensive draft picks in a modern draft was three on several occasions, including most recently in 2015.
Green, a native of Greenville, went pick No. 199 overall and will join former Bulldog defensive lineman Denico Autry in Indianapolis. A team captain, Green tallied 161 tackles, 20.5 tackles for loss, 8.5 sacks, three forced fumble and three interceptions during his four-year career. A leader in the locker room and community, Green made the most of his Senior Bowl opportunity, which led to an NFL Combine invite and an outstanding Pro Day on campus.
"They came out and worked me, I had a pre-draft workout with them and I talked to them during that time," Green said of the Colts. "We kind of kept in contact between now and then. I didn't know, but I am happy to be a part of Colts Nation and ready to get to work. I come out ready to work every day, ready to work every game. My effort, I give my all every snap. It's just how I play, how I always play and how I plan to continue to play."
Green was one of three starters on the defensive line selected in the draft, joining Jeffery Simmons (pick 19) and Montez Sweat (pick 26). Fellow defender Johnathan Abram was chosen right after Sweat at No. 27. Together, this group formed a unit that led the nation in total defense (263.1) and finished second in scoring defense (13.2), second in rushing defense (95.08) and seventh in passing defense (168.0).
2019 NFL Draft Picks
Round (Pick) - Name, Position, Team
1 (19) - Jeffery Simmons, DT, Tennessee Titans
1 (26) – Montez Sweat, DE, Washington Redskins
1 (27) – Johnathan Abram, S, Oakland Raiders
2 (44) – Elgton Jenkins, C, Green Bay Packers
6 (199) – Gerri Green, DE, Indianapolis Colts
2019 NFL Draft Notes
MSU's five overall picks were the second-most in modern draft history, tying the 2015 squad. The school record was six in 1995.
MSU's four defensive selections were the most defensive picks in school history. The previous was three in 2015, 2001, 2000 and 1993.
The Bulldogs set school records for most players selected in the first round (3) and most picks in the first two rounds (4). They tied the school record for most picks through the first six rounds (5).
MSU tied for the national lead in most first round picks with three, joining Alabama and Clemson.
MSU joined Clemson as the only two programs to produce three or more picks through pick 44.
With three selections, it was the most defensive linemen chosen in a draft in MSU history.
Elgton Jenkins marked the third straight year that a Bulldog offensive lineman was selected in the draft.
A total of 18 Bulldogs have been selected in the draft since 2015, the most in a five-year span in school history. The previous was 17 from 1995-99.
It's the first time since 2000-01 that State produced four or more draft picks in consecutive drafts.
Johnathan Abram (No. 27) was the second-highest drafted defensive back in school history behind only Walt Harris, who went No. 13 overall in 1996.
With the three first round picks, State has now produced 14 first round selections all-time in the modern draft era.
Jeffery Simmons (No. 19) was the highest drafted Bulldog since Pro Bowler Fletcher Cox went No. 12 overall in 2012. Simmons was the first Bulldog selected by the Tennessee Titans since Antonio Johnson in 2007.
Elgton Jenkins (No. 44) became the Bulldogs' highest-drafted offensive lineman since Derek Sherrod was selected No. 32 overall by the Green Bay Packers in 2011. Jenkins, a once three-star recruit, was the second-highest draft Bulldog offensive lineman since 1978.
MSU produced the second-most defensive linemen in this draft (3) behind only Clemson (4).