Round 7 has become the Mark Sanchez Friendship Club tour for the New York Jets.
With the Jets’ final pick of the 2011 draft, 227th overall, they chose Colorado wide receiver Scotty McKnight, who just happened to hang out in Southern California with the Jets’ current third-year QB.
“Are you kidding me? Yeah, teaming up with a great organization and a great team and then being together with my childhood buddy who I grew up with,” McKnight told Jets beat reporters after his selection. “We never played on the same team before. We just kind of always trained together. It’s a dream come true. It’s cool. I’m just ready to make the most out of the opportunity.”
How close are the pitcher and catcher now? Sanchez told the Denver Post back in March that “Scotty will be a steal in the draft. He’s a versatile guy who can run every route. He’s quick, he’s fast and he’s strong. He’s really smart and he really cares about the game. He loves playing.”
Sanchez even threw passes to the 5’11″, 185-pound wideout at Colorado’s pro day this year. And while McKnight was chatting with the Jets’ beats, he said Sanchez and his family were over at the house enjoying the serendipity of the moment.
“Deep down, gosh, I was just hoping I would go to the Jets,” McKnight said. “Everything there is just so appealing to me and my family. I love what they’re all about over there, competing, winning games, tough, hardnosed football. That’s what I think I can bring to the table, both on special teams and as an offensive player as well. I’m just so excited about the opportunity and how it played out.”
Do not get the impression from all of this, that McKnight will be happy with just being drafted. He was an accomplished college receiver — his 215 receptions and 22 touchdowns both set Colorado career records and his 2,521 receiving yards was third. He is the first Buff to lead the team in receptions for four consecutive seasons.
And he was durably productive as well. He became only the 10th player in NCAA history to catch a pass in every game he appeared in, and only the sixth to do this without missing any games due to injury (48 games plus one postseason game.)
Sure-handed? He had just two fumbles in 231 career touches, and one of those fumbles technically should not have been charged to him, since the Big 12 admitted that an incorrect officiating call in a 2009 game should have been ruled an incompletion, not a fumble.
As for the rest of the Sanchez tour, this selection came just 19 picks after the Jets selected QB Greg McElroy of Alabama, who knows Sanchez well from working with his high school coach, Bob Johnson, leading up to the draft. Small world.
The McKnight pick was originally Seattle’s selection before the Seahawks traded it to the Eagles, who then sent it to the Jets in the fifth-round maneuvering that landed the Green & White TCU wideout/returner Jeremy Kerley.
Tags: Bob Johnson, Colorado, Greg McElroy, Mark Sanchez, Rex Ryan, Scotty McKnight
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