Lakewood ranks among state’s best at producing NFL draft picks

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Lakewood has a penchant for producing NFL talent. In the past two decades, the Spartans had nine players who were drafted, the most of any area team and the fifth-most in the state according to a list produced by MaxPreps.

Five of those players are still playing in the NFL, tops among local programs. Lakewood was the only school not from Broward or Dade County in the top five.  Nationally, the Spartans are tied with two other schools for ninth overall during that span.

The Lakewood legacy

A list of Spartans selected in the NFL Draft the past 20 years (2001-20)

2002

WR Tim Carter

College: Auburn

Drafted: 2nd round (46th overall) by the New York Giants

2009

WR Louis Murphy

College: Florida

Drafted: 4th round (124th overall) by the Oakland Raiders

2012

DB Jonte Green

College: New Mexico State

Drafted: 6th round (196th overall) by the Detroit Lions

2015

DL Dante Fowler

College: Florida

Drafted: 1st round (3rd overall) by the Jacksonville Jaguars

2017

Griffin twins
Photo credit: Seattle Seahawks

CB Shaquill Griffin

College: UCF

Drafted: 3rd round (90th overall) by the Seattle Seahawks

WR Rodney Adams

College: USF

Drafted: 5th round (170th overall) by the Minnesota Vikings

RELATED: Looking back at the locals from the 2017 draft

2018

Photo credit: Courtesy of the New England Patriots/David Silverman

OL Isaiah Wynn 

College: Georgia

Drafted: 1st round (23rd overall) by the New England Patriots

LB Shaquem Griffin

College: UCF

Drafted: 5th round (141st overall) by the Seattle Seahawks

WR Marquez Valdes-Scantling

College: USF

Drafted: 5th round (174th overall) by the Green Bay Packers

RELATED: Looking back at the NFL locals from the 2018 draft

There were several area programs included in the list. Armwood had five players selected in the NFL Draft the past 20 years, the second-highest total among local teams and tying for 16th overall in the state along with 11 others.

Here are the five Hawks taken during that span.

2002 

OL Mike Pearson

College: Florida

Drafted: 2nd round (40th overall) by the Jacksonville Jaguars

2015 

RB Matt Jones

College: Florida

Drafted: 3rd round (95th overall) by the Washington Redskins

2017

DB Leon McQuay III

College: USC

Drafted: 6th round (218th overall) by the Kansas City Chiefs

2019

Photo credit: Courtesy of the New England Patriots/David Silverman

DL Byron Cowart

College: Auburn/Maryland

Drafted: 5th round (159th overall) by the New England Patriots

RELATED: Looking back at the NFL locals taken in the 2019 draft

2020

P Sterling Hofrichter

College: Syracuse

Drafted: 7th round (228th overall) by the Atlanta Falcons

RELATED: Former Armwood star Sterling Hofrichter picked by Falcons

Gaither, Hillsborough and Jefferson each had four players drafted the past 20 years and are tied with 13 other state teams for 17th overall.

Gaither

2005 

WR J.R. Russell

College: Louisville 

Drafted: 7th round (253rd overall) by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers

2010

WR Carlton Mitchell

College: USF

Drafted: 6th round (177th overall) by the Cleveland Browns

2018 

QB Alex McGough

College: FIU

Drafted: 7th round  (220th overall), by the Seattle Seahawks

2019

Photo credit: Detroit Lions

CB Amani Oruwariye

College: Penn State

Drafted: 5th round (146th overall) by the Detroit Lions

Hillsborough

2003

DE Andrew Williams

College: Miami 

Drafted: 3rd round (89th overall) by the San Francisco 49ers

RB Chris Davis

College: Syracuse 

Drafted: 5th round (165th overall) by the Seattle Seahawks

2004

DB J.R. Reed 

College: USF

Drafted: 4th round (129th overall) by the Philadelphia Eagles

2016

DB Anthony Brown

College: Purdue 

Drafted: 6th round (189th overall) by the Dallas Cowboys

Jefferson

2002

WR Reche Caldwell

College: Florida

Drafted: 2nd round (48th overall) by the San Diego Chargers

2008

WR Andre Caldwell

College: Florida

Drafted: 3rd round (97th overall) by the Cincinnati Bengals

2015

LB Ramik Wilson

College: Georgia

Drafted: 4th round (118th overall) by the Kansas City Chiefs

2016

WR Chris Moore

College: Cincinnati 

Drafted: 4th round (107th overall) by the Baltimore Ravens

East Lake, Plant and St. Petersburg Catholic each had three selected in the past 20 years and are tied with 24 other programs for 44th overall in the state during that span.

East Lake

2016

Photo credit: Los Angeles Rams

TE Tyler Higbee

College: Western Kentucky

Drafted: 3rd round (110th overall) by the Los Angeles Rams

RELATED: The list of East Lake NFL draft picks could grow

2018

OL Mason Cole

College: Michigan

Drafted: 3rd round (97th overall) by the Arizona Cardinals

2020

LB Justin Strnad

College: Wake Forest

Drafted: (178th overall) by the Denver Broncos

RELATED: Justin Strnad’s difficult path to the draft

Plant 

2005

WR Mike Williams

College: USC

Drafted: 1st round (10th overall) by the Detroit Lions

RELATED: Area coaches and players react to protests and police matters

2012

TE Orson Charles

College: Georgia

Drafted: 4th round (116th overall) by the Cincinnati Bengals

2014   

QB Aaron Murray

College: Georgia

Drafted: 5th round (163rd overall) by the Kansas City Chiefs

St. Petersburg Catholic

2003

FB Casey Moore

College: Stanford

Drafted: 7th round (247th overall) by the Carolina Panthers

2007

WR Chris Davis

College: FSU

Drafted: 4th round (128th overall) by the Tennessee Titans

2014

OL Jon Halapio

College: Florida

Drafted: 6th round (179th overall) by the New England Patriots