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Friday September 17th

Looking forward for the five former Tar Heels selected in the NFL Draft

UNC's junior running back Javonte Williams (25) evades members of Wake Forest's defensive line during a game in Kenan Memorial Stadium on Saturday, Nov. 14, 2020. UNC beat Wake Forest 59-53.
Buy Photos UNC's junior running back Javonte Williams (25) evades members of Wake Forest's defensive line during a game in Kenan Memorial Stadium on Saturday, Nov. 14, 2020. UNC beat Wake Forest 59-53.

Of the five former members of the North Carolina football team selected in last weekend’s NFL Draft, all had to wait until at least day two to hear their name called. 

Five players is the most the Tar Heels have had drafted since 2017, when they had six players selected.

Here’s a look at where North Carolina’s five league-bound players ended up, and how they might fit in at the next level. 

Javonte Williams, Denver Broncos, 35th overall

The Wallace, North Carolina native was the third running back to come off the board behind Alabama’s Najee Harris, who went 24th overall to the Pittsburgh Steelers, and Clemson’s Travis Etienne, who joined No. 1 pick Trevor Lawrence in Jacksonville after being selected 25th overall by the Jaguars. 

After being passed over by the tailback-needy Buffalo Bills at No. 30, Williams didn’t have to wait long to hear his name called on day two. 

With Drew Lock and Teddy Bridgewater expected to have a quarterback competition this fall, it’s uncertain who will be handing the ball off to Williams come September — but with the Broncos losing Phillip Lindsay, there should be plenty of carries for Williams alongside Melvin Gordon. 

Last year, the Broncos passed on just 57 percent of offensive plays — good for the 21st highest percentage in the league — representing a more balanced offensive system than most in an increasingly pass-happy league. 

Especially if Bridgewater — who struggled to push the ball downfield last year with the Carolina Panthers — is the starter, then expect Williams to be a versatile weapon out of the backfield. 

Chazz Surratt, Minnesota Vikings, 78th overall


UNC's graduate linebacker Chazz Surratt (21) celebrates his sack of Wake Forest's quarterback during a game in Kenan Memorial Stadium on Saturday, Nov. 14, 2020. UNC beat Wake Forest 59-53.


Surratt, the quarterback-turned-linebacker, was the next Tar Heel off the board in the third round to the Vikings. 

Minnesota’s defense finished 27th in the league in yards-per-game allowed last year, which was the primary reason a team with offensive weapons like Justin Jefferson and Dalvin Cook missed out on the playoffs. Surratt should fill a hole as a talented coverage linebacker, who flashed sideline-to-sideline tackling abilities in his time at UNC. 

He may not be a day-one starter, but Surratt could quickly develop into a key member of Minnesota’s defense. 

Dyami Brown, Washington Football Team, 82nd overall


UNC junior wide reciever Dyami Brown (2) catches the ball while Virginia Tech junior defensive back Jermaine Waller (28) attempts to cover him during a game in Kenan Memorial Stadium on Saturday, Oct. 10, 2020. UNC beat Virginia Tech 56-45.


The last Tar Heel to go off the board on day two, the wide receiver Brown should complement free agent signing Curtis Samuel and fellow Football Team receiver Terry McLaurin well in Washington. 

Just like Samuel and McLaurin, the 6-foot-1 Brown should develop into a legitimate deep threat at the next level. His big-play ability was clear with Sam Howell under center in Chapel Hill, where he racked up over 1,000 yards and eight touchdowns on 20 yards-per-reception. 

Especially with gunslinger Ryan Fitzpatrick playing quarterback, Brown’s 4.44 40-yard dash speed should come in handy early in his time in the NFL. 

Michael Carter, New York Jets, 107th overall


Wake Forest's first year defensive back Nick Andersen (45) attempts to tackle UNC's senior running back Michael Carter (8) during a game in Kenan Memorial Stadium on Saturday, Nov. 14, 2020. UNC beat Wake Forest 59-53.


Entering day three with only four running backs off the board, Carter was an early target for teams picking near the top of the fourth round. 

The Jets got great value, giving No. 2 overall pick Zach Wilson another weapon in New York’s new-look offense. With former San Francisco 49ers defensive coordinator Robert Saleh taking the head position with the Jets, expect them to employ a similar offensive system to San Francisco's in New York — one that’s very beneficial for running backs, especially shifty ones like Carter. 

Dazz Newsome, Chicago Bears, 221st overall


Senior wide receiver Dazz Newsome (5) scores a touchdown against Western Carolina in Kenan Memorial Stadium on Dec. 5, 2020.


The lone Tar Heel selected to not opt out of last year’s Orange Bowl, wide receiver Dazz Newsome had the longest wait of any North Carolina players. 

With the depth of this year’s wide receiver class — this wasn’t to be unexpected. Despite starting off slow last year, Newsome was an impact player throughout his time in Chapel Hill and could add to a thin wide receiver room in Chicago. 

Despite his late-round selection, the Bears need weapons, and Newsome could fill that hole. Regardless, his high motor should land him a roster spot on special teams if he isn’t ready to get offensive snaps on day one. 

@zachycrain 

@dthsports | sports@dailytarheel.com




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