Sunday 21 October 2018

This is what it feels like to be drafted into the NFL

Spoiler: it feels pretty good.

Picked by the Pittsburgh Steelers in 2017, the moment changed JuJu Smith-Schuster's life (Simon Cooper/PA)
Picked by the Pittsburgh Steelers in 2017, the moment changed JuJu Smith-Schuster's life (Simon Cooper/PA)

By Max McLean, Press Association

The NFL draft by its very nature makes dreams come true for student athletes looking to make it to the big time, and Juju Smith-Schuster was one of the lucky ones last year.

Picked by the Pittsburgh Steelers in 2017, the moment that changed Smith-Schuster’s life was recorded on camera, and the wide receiver shared it on social media at the start of this year’s draft to remind everyone how much that moment means.

The 21-year-old enjoyed an excellent rookie season having been picked, finishing with 58 catches for 917 yards, as well as seven touchdowns.

The Steelers finished the regular season with a 13-3 record also, and Smith-Schuster, with Samoan ancestry, was named Polynesian Player of the Year.

This 2018 draft began on Thursday and continues for three days in total, with teams attending the NFL combine, an event which tests athletes physically and mentally, before taking turns to pick.

This year’s number one overall pick was quarterback Baker Mayfield, who went to the Cleveland Browns in round one, a round in which NFL.com writer Gregg Rosenthal said: “virtually nothing turned out as expected”.

And here’s a closer look at what things are like on the other end of the call.

Steelers coach Mike Tomlin got in touch with safety Terrell Edmunds to let him know he’d been picked, presumably unaware Edmunds was reportedly in the bathroom when he received the call.

A special moment, nonetheless.

Press Association

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