Texas linebacker Malik Jefferson(46) looks to tackle Oklahoma running back Joe Mixon(25) at the Cotton Bowl in Dallas, Saturday, Oct. 8, 2016. (Stephen Spillman / for American-Statesman)

BEVO BEAT Football

Early 2018 NFL mock drafts has Malik Jefferson going in top 15

Posted April 10th, 2017

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The 2017 NFL Draft is a few weeks away and the next college football season is still about four-and-half months away, but that never stops the world of NFL mock drafts from looking into the future.

The first round of 2018 mocks are in, and a Longhorn has found his way into the first round. Even after an up-and-down sophomore season, Malik Jefferson is slotted by Walterfootball.com as the No. 10 pick of the draft, while Fueldbysports.com has Jefferson No. 11.

Obviously these mock drafts mean very little in what teams could do with their picks (there’s an alternative universe where Chris Simms is the No. 1 pick of the Houston Texans) and how a player performs will impact where he goes. But it does show that the shine on Jefferson’s talent hasn’t dimmed that much.

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Jefferson had 61 tackles as freshman and 62 tackles as a sophomore. In his career, he has eight sacks, two forced fumbles and 15.5 tackles for a loss. Jefferson may have battled with a sophomore slump last season, but was still one of the top defensive players for the Longhorns last season.

These mock drafts also could be off because, simply, Jefferson could always choose to return to Texas after next season.

As for the 2017 draft, D’Onta Foreman had a standout Pro Day a few weeks ago and could be a second-round pick. 

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