Ford, Evans Picked on Day Two of NFL Draft
NORMAN — Oklahoma sent two more players to the NFL during the league's 2019 draft Friday night when the Buffalo Bills selected Cody Ford with the sixth pick of the second round (38th overall) and the Los Angeles Rams took Bobby Evans with the 33rd pick of the third round (97th overall). Both redshirt-junior offensive linemen, Ford and Evans joined No. 1 and No. 25 overall picks Kyler Murray and Marquise Brown, who were selected in Thursday's first round by the Arizona Cardinals and Baltimore Ravens, respectively.
Ford and Evans give the Sooners 91 NFL Draft picks since 2000, and make OU the only program to produce at least four draft selections in each of the last 12 seasons (LSU also entered this year's draft with a streak of 11 years with four-plus draftees).
The duo was part of an offensive line that won the Joe Moore Award as the nation's best O-line unit and that helped OU lead the country in total offense (570.3 ypg), scoring offense (48.4 ppg), yards per rush (6.6) and yards per play (FBS-record 8.6), and rank second in passing efficiency rating (194.9).
The 6-4, 330-pound Ford was a 2018 first-team All-Big 12 honoree and a third-team AP All-American who started all 14 games at right tackle after playing guard during his previous two seasons. He played 881 snaps last year and recorded a team-high 127 knockdowns while only allowing two sacks.
From Pineville, La., Ford played in 12 games in 2017 and made four starts at left guard. He also started the first three games of the 2016 season at left guard as a redshirt freshman before breaking his leg against Ohio State and missing the rest of the campaign. In 2015, he was one of OU's offensive scout team players of the year while he redshirted. He also earned Academic All-Big 12 honors in 2017.
"I'm thrilled for Cody," said OU head coach Lincoln Riley. "He had to overcome a ton here at OU with the really bad injury against Ohio State in his first year and then moving positions. He's one of the nastiest offensive linemen I've ever coached, and I think he was probably the most dominant tackle in the country last year. Seeing him now as a high draft pick is amazing. His best ball is in front of him."
Evans, a 6-5, 308-pounder who was teammates with Murray at Allen (Texas) High School, started each of the Sooners' last 40 games. He earned second-team All-Big 12 honors by the league's coaches and media in 2018 when he started all 14 games at left tackle. He played right tackle in 2016 (14 games) and '17 (12 games), earning honorable mention all-conference honors by the coaches both seasons. Evans was also a two-time Academic All-Big 12 Team honoree.
"I'm so happy for Bobby, who was a great three-year starter for us," said Riley. "I'm just so proud of his development and how he's grown as a player, from a guy who was really thrown in there early in his career as a redshirt freshman to a guy who really blossomed into one of the best tackles in the country. I'm excited for him and his new opportunity with the Los Angeles Rams."
The 2019 NFL Draft will resume Saturday at 11 a.m. CT with rounds four through seven.