NFL Draft 2014: Reviewing Big 12 players picked in first round


Two Big 12 players — Oklahoma State’s Justin Gilbert and TCU’s Jason Verrett — were picked in the first round of the 2014 NFL Draft.

Oct 26, 2013; Ames, IA, USA; Oklahoma State Cowboys cornerback Justin Gilbert (4) smiles during the third quarter against the Iowa State Cyclones at Jack Trice Stadium. Oklahoma State defeated Iowa State 58-27. Mandatory Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

Iowa State obviously didn’t get a pick in the first round, keeping their long streak of not getting a first round pick since 1973, when running back George Amundson was picked 14th overall and remains the only first round pick the Cyclones have ever had.

Still, the Big 12 got a few selections, and we’ll review them.

CB Justin Gilbert – Cleveland Browns, No. 8

The headlines will focus on Johnny Manziel at Cleveland, but picking up Gilbert continues to improve a backfield that’s emerging as one of the best in the NFL. He’ll join Joe Haden, who can help him adapt easily at the next level, and Gilbert has all the tools to make an immediate impact. He also can help on special teams returning 18 kicks for OSU last season.

This was an incredibly good pick for the Browns considering they received more picks by drafting down to get him. Last year with the Cowboys, he had 42 total tackles, seven interceptions which led to two touchdowns, and had a third touchdown on a kick return. Naturally, one of those two pick-six’s came against Iowa State.

CB Jason Verrett – San Diego Chargers, No. 25

He’s undersized, but Verrett has incredible speed that makes up for it. He broke up 14 passes last season, tied for 21st nationally, and sprinkle in a couple of interceptions.

Verrett never saw much action against Iowa State. He didn’t play in their game last season (which certainly helped E.J. Bibbs) and recorded zero tackles in the previous year’s meeting.