Seven young men achieved their dreams this past weekend.
Two former Razorback football players were selected in the 2020 NFL Draft and five others were signed as undrafted free agents.
Defensive tackle McTelvin Agim was selected in the third round, 95th overall — the highest a defensive Hog has been drafted since 2012. Safety Kamren Curl went in the seventh round, 216th overall. T.J. Smith, De’Jon Harris, Austin Capps, Chase Harrell and Devwah Whaley were also added to NFL rosters via undrafted free agent contracts.
McTelvin Agim, a 6’3” 309lbs defensive tackle, had a very tough childhood growing in Texarkana, Texas. He played four years at Arkansas, totaling 140 tackles and 14.5 sacks. He forced six fumbles and recovered two.
He will be joining a good defensive unit in Denver. The Broncos head coach Vic Fangio has been a defensive coordinator with five NFL franchises dating back to 1995. This will give Agim a chance to develop in a good defensive program. Denver is one of the best destinations he could have gone.
Safety Kamren Curl was selected by the Washington Redskins with the second pick of the seventh round, 216th overall. Curl is a 6’1” 206 lbs safety originally from San Diego, California who also played cornerback as a Hog. Curl racked up 175 total tackles and two sacks in his time on the Hill. He also intercepted two passes and forced three fumbles (with two fumbles recovered), finished a second-team all-conference performer by Pro Football Focus. His 87.6 overall grade was tied for the third highest among SEC safeties.
Curl is a seventh round pick so starting will be an uphill journey, even making the opening day roster will be tough. The Redskins, however, are thin at safety. They only have three other players listed on their roster at safety. Landon Collins will definitely be a starter for them, but the other two starters combined for two games started last season. Curl will have to grind, but he landed in a place with an opening at his position and opportunity could present itself.
Curl is the first Razorback safety drafted into the NFL since Vickiel Vaughn in 2006.
Right after the draft ended on Saturday, the Atlanta Falcons picked up offensive lineman Austin Capps. Capps switched to offense after his sophomore season. Capps was not listed as a draft prospect on NFL.com. Capps could find himself on the field as a backup or an injury replacement since the offensive line is a demanding and dangerous position.
Chase Harrell signed with the San Francisco 49ers as a free agent. Harrell came to Arkansas as a redshirt junior and played tight end for the Hogs as a senior after playing wide receiver his first three years. As a senior, he caught only three passes for 34 yards and a touchdown. For his career, he caught 37 passes for 396 yards and six touchdowns.
De’Jon “Scoota” Harris also signed with the New England Patriots as a free agent. Harris had a great career playing linebacker at Arkansas. He racked up 371 total tackles in his four years with 7.5 sacks and 4 forced fumbles with three fumble recoveries.
It is surprising Harris wasn’t at least a late round pick given his success in the SEC. He was named All-SEC second team his last three seasons by the Associated Press. Perhaps his injury left his status questioned. He was forced to miss spring practice before his senior season after undergoing foot surgery. Harris is a good player in a good program, but will have to work hard just to make the opening day roster.
The Cincinnati Bengals signed running back Devwah Whaley to a free agent contract. Whaley is a talented back and former four-star recruit, but only played in six games as a senior. He played 30 career games with the Hogs and rushed for 1,439 yards on 301 attempts and scored 12 touchdowns. He caught 20 passes for 254 yards as well.
The Bengals have a full back field and Whaley would have to pass up a few guys to stay on the roster come the fall. In the short term, he’s more likely to find a place on special teams.
T.J. Smith was picked up by the Los Angeles Chargers after the draft was over. Smith played defensive end for the Hogs. He finished with 75 career tackles and five sacks with one forced fumble. Smith will have a struggle finding playing time with the Chargers and he will need to produce more than he did in college. Like Capps, Smith was not even listed on the draft prospects list on NFL.com.
One player not picked up by a team yet is tight end Cheyenne “CJ” O’Grady. One of the most talented offensive players on the Arkansas team, he had the best highlight play for the Hogs in 2019 against Colorado State. O’Grady had some off-field trouble and stepped away from the team to focus on the draft late in the season. His trouble seems to have scared off NFL teams.
Still, despite the red flags, he is very talented and may still get his chance at the NFL.
For more about “Sosa” Agim’s unlikely journey to the NFL, check out our latest here: