Former Missouri Tigers defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson was draft by the New York Jets with the 13th overall pick.
Richardson is the highest draft Missouri Tigers since Aldon Smith went 7th overall and Blaine Gabbert went 10th overall to the Jacksonville Jaguars in the 2011 NFL Draft, and the highest selected Mizzou defensive lineman since Justin Smith went 4th overall in 2001. He was also the first defensive tackle selected in this year’s draft, leapfrogging Star Lotulelei and Sharrif Floyd who were considered the top two defensive tackles coming into the draft.
However, Missouri fans know how good Richardson is. He is a crazy athlete who can move very quickly for a 330 pound man. He performed very well against SEC competition, recording 75 tackle (10.5 for loss), 4 sacks, 3 passes defended, 3 forced fumbles, and a fumble recovery.
The Jets had a need in the middle of the defensive line to help stop the run and provide an interior pass rush so the selection of Richardson makes a ton of sense for New York. Rex Ryan will know how to use Richardson’s athleticism which should put him in a good position to perform well in the NFL from the beginning. Will he be able to score touchdowns for the Jets? Well, that’s another issue, but from a defensive stand point the Jets just landed themselves an excellent player.
— Coach Pinkel (@mizzoufootball) April 26, 2013