Being drafted would be ‘very emotional’ for Troy’s Jake Andrews
The Millbrook native’s stock has been rising and he hopes to hear his name called for the 2023 NFL Draft
TROY, Ala. (WSFA) - The NFL Draft begins Thursday and runs through the weekend, and there are a few hopefuls from the Troy football team hoping to hear their names called. This includes senior center Jake Andrews, who’s had the dream of playing in the NFL since he was playing youth football in Millbrook.
Andrews classifies himself as someone who isn’t a “nervous” or “anxious” guy, but he says being drafted this weekend would be “surreal.”
Growing up, sports filled his schedule, from football to baseball and soccer, and even swimming.
“Sports when I was young was just really important to me, to be active to be outside to be doing something,” said Andrews. “Competition, I think is the kind of the core piece of it always been competitive.”
Andrews’ love for swimming later turned into a love for playing football and wrestling by the time he got to Stanhope Elmore High School. From there, Andrews chose to pursue football on the collegiate level. He attended Troy with a chip on his shoulder, looking to prove something to those who might’ve overlooked him coming out of high school.
“All the bigger schools, one of the main things that kept me away from them was I was too short. And so, you know, always had that little chip on my shoulder,” he said.
That chip drove Andrews to become one of the best offensive linemen in the Sun Belt Conference. It wasn’t until this past season, however, that he really began to feel he had a shot to play in the NFL.
“I’d say around the middle of the season this year, I was like, ‘Okay, this is a pretty good chance I get to go and do what I wanted to do since I was a child,’” he realized.
Andrews saw his stock continue to rise, even after the end of the season, “I’m thinking, ‘Okay, I’m a seventh round, maybe undrafted guy, maybe sixth round,’” he said. That was when invites to the Senior Bowl and NFL Combine changed Andrews’ outlook on his draft stock.
“It all just kind of fell into place, and since then, my stock has been just rising,” he said.
Andrews projects as a fourth-round selection. Should his name get called at any point between Thursday and Saturday, it’ll be the “surreal” moment he’s always dreamed.
“I’ve always said that I wanted to do it. It’ll be shell-shocking, for sure,” he added.
Andrews could become the first Troy Trojan drafted in the NFL Draft since the New England Patriots took Antonio Garcia in the second round back in 2017.
“At the end of the day, for me, that’s that’s a big part of it, is being able to put Troy on the map,” he said.
The NFL Draft begins at 7 p.m. Thursday. You can watch the first and second rounds on ESPN, ABC, and NFL Network. You can watch Saturday on both ESPN and NFL Network.
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