Jonathon Cooper Selected by Denver Broncos with No. 239 Overall Pick in 2021 NFL Draft

By Colin Hass-Hill on May 1, 2021 at 6:03 pm
Jonathon Cooper

Another Buckeye is headed to the Broncos.

He had to wait for most of the 2021 NFL draft, but the Denver Broncos took Jonathon Cooper with the No. 239 overall selection in the seventh round.

Cooper is the 10th Buckeye selected in this year's draft, joining first-round pick Justin Fields, second-round picks Pete Werner and Josh Myer, third-round picks Wyatt Davis, Trey Sermon and Baron Browning, fourth-round pick Tommy Togiai and fifth-round picks Luke Farrell and Shaun Wade. Browning was also drafted by the Broncos.

Ohio State has now had 10 players selected in each of the last two drafts, becoming the only school to hit double digits in each of the past two years.

Initially, Cooper intended to go pro a year ago, but he took a redshirt in 2019 after playing in just four games due to an ankle injury. He returned for the 2020 season and put together his best season as a Buckeye, earning third-team All-Big Ten honors for his 24 tackles and 3.5 sacks, leading all Ohio State defensive ends in both categories.

Across all five years of college football, Cooper racked up 77 tackles, 15 tackles for loss, 10 sacks, two passes defended, two fumble recoveries and one forced fumble. His leadership helped him become a two-time team captain, the first-ever player designated to wear the Block O jersey and Ohio State's Big Ten Sportsmanship Award honoree.

Despite his achievements as a Buckeye, Cooper had to wait until the final 21 picks of the draft to hear his name called, and he won't soon forget the wait.

While Cooper played defensive end for the Buckeyes, he's likely to play outside linebacker in the Broncos' 3-4 defensive scheme.

Cooper was rated by ESPN's Todd McShay as the 300th-best overall prospect and by The Athletic's Dane Brugler as the 30th-best defensive end in the class with a sixth-to-seventh-round projection.

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