Sports

Saints pick DL Sheldon Rankins 12th overall

By PATRICK OCHS

pochs@sunherald.com Twitter: PatrickOchs

Louisville's Sheldon Rankins (98) attempts to bring down Houston's Greg Ward Jr. during the first half of an NCAA college football game in Louisville, Ky., Saturday, Sept. 12, 2015
Louisville's Sheldon Rankins (98) attempts to bring down Houston's Greg Ward Jr. during the first half of an NCAA college football game in Louisville, Ky., Saturday, Sept. 12, 2015

With the 12th overall pick in the NFL draft the New Orleans Saints opted to go defense, selecting Louisville defensive lineman Sheldon Rankins.

The 6-foot-1, 299-pound lineman recorded 58 tackles with six sacks and 13.0 tackles for loss as a junior last season.

As expected, Cal quarterback Jared Goff and North Dakota State quarterback Carson Wentz went first and second overall, to the St. Louis Rams and Philadelphia Eagles respectively. The San Diego Chargers selected Ohio State defensive end Joey Bosa next and then the Dallas Cowboys plucked Bosa's teammate, running back Ezekiel Elliott, fourth overall.

The story of the draft was the free fall of Ole Miss offensive lineman Laremy Tunsil. Once thought of as the top talent in the draft, the left tackle plummeted.

Why? Tunsil already carried considerable baggage into the draft, having been suspended for seven games last season by the NCAA in addition to the legal battle with his stepfather.

And then 10 minutes before the draft, a bizarre video allegedly showing Tunsil smoking from a gas mask bong was tweeted from his personal account -- and immediately deleted. Tunsil deleted his account altogether and later apologized but the damage was already done.

Multiple reports surfaced after the tweet stating teams either skipped over Tunsil or removed him from their draft boards altogether because of the video.

Check back at SunHerald.com for more on the NFL Draft.

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