Editor’s note: Leading up to the 2016 Draft, we took a look at each NFL team’s Longhorn draft history.
Over the next week leading up to the 2016 NFL Draft on April 28, we’re taking a look at the best Texas Longhorns players drafted by each team.
New England Patriots (1960-present)
Best pick: Raymond Clayborn, defensive back 1977
Clayborn was a three-time Pro Bowler during his 15 year career. He played 13 seasons for the Patriots, helping them to a Super Bowl XX appearance in 1985, the same year he had a career-high six interceptions and made the Pro Bowl. Clayborn finished with 36 career interceptions, which is a Patriots team record.
In three years at Texas, Clayborn played running back and defensive back and rushed for a career 529 yards and eight touchdowns.
Most recent pick: Malcom Brown, defensive lineman, 2015
Last year the Patriots took Brown with the last pick of the first round of the draft. In his rookie year, Brown started 12 games for the defending NFL champions and registered 31 tackles. He had two fumble recoveries and appeared in 16 games. He had three sacks. Brown started both playoff games for the Patriots, recording two tackles.
At Texas, Brown was a force, starting 13 games as a freshman and recording 25 tackles. He was a finalist for the Bronko Nagurski Trophy and the Outland Trophy. He was the Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year as a junior, recording 70 tackles, 13 for a loss and 6.5 sacks and was a consensus All-American before declaring for the draft after his junior year.
First pick: Alan Lowry, defensive back, 1973
Lowry was the 316th pick of the 1973 draft in the 13th round. He never played in the NFL.
Lowry was the 1973 Cotton Bowl Offensive MVP where he was the starting quarterback of Texas. He also was the starting punter. He was a two-time All-Southwest conference baseball player, as well as an All-SWC defensive back in 1971 and All-SWC quarterback in 1972.
Lowry is best remembered in the NFL not as a player, but as a coach. Instead of playing in the NFL, Lowry began his coaching career in 1973 at Texas and his career lasted for 40 years! His specialty was special teams, and he was on the 1994 San Francisco staff that won the Super Bowl. He was an assistant for the Houston Oilers/Tennessee Titans from 1996-2013 and famously devised this play (Bills fans, hide your eyes, I’m showing this clip again):
Of note: Kenneth Sims is one the few Longhorns to be taken No. 1 overall. The Patriots took him first overall in 1982. Sims played eight seasons for the Patriots, never making the Pro Bowl and recording 17 sacks in his career.
Here are some Hall of Famers taken after Sims: Mike Munchak, Marcus Allen and Andre Tippett. Jim McMahon was taken fifth overall, and wound up beating the Patriots in Super Bowl XX.
To be fair, Sims was awesome with the Longhorns. He won the 1981 Vince Lombardi Award, was a two-time All-American and finished eight in the Heisman Trophy voting. He had 131 tackles as a junior.
We’ll be honest though, most kids think Tom Brady has been playing for the Patriots since the 1950s, so we’ll add this: Since the Patriots’ Brady-Bill Belichick run in 2001, the Pats have under-inflated their roster with Longhorns, taking just two players: Brown in 2015 and David Thomas in 2006.
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