Denver picks Malik Jackson in 5th round

Austin Johnson, Tauren Poole reportedly sign free agent contracts

UT head coach Derek Dooley greets defensive lineman Malik Jackson (97) as seniors are introduced before play against Vanderbilt at Neyland Stadium on Saturday, Nov. 19, 2011.(AMY SMOTHERMAN BURGESS/NEWS SENTINEL)

Photo by Amy Smotherman Burgess, ©KNS/2011

UT head coach Derek Dooley greets defensive lineman Malik Jackson (97) as seniors are introduced before play against Vanderbilt at Neyland Stadium on Saturday, Nov. 19, 2011.(AMY SMOTHERMAN BURGESS/NEWS SENTINEL)

How long before you hear “Rocky Top” in the Denver Broncos locker room?

The Broncos have doubled their quotient of Tennessee Vols, signing Peyton Manning as a free agent last month and drafting Malik Jackson on Saturday.

Jackson, a defensive end, went to Denver on the 137th pick of the 2012 NFL draft — the second pick of the fifth round.

Jackson said he’s never met Robert Ayers, an ex-Vol already established at defensive end with the Broncos since 2009.

“I look forward to getting to know Robert Ayers,” Jackson said in a teleconference with Denver media. “I can learn from him.”

The fourth ex-Vol in Denver is punter Britton Colquitt.

It was a quiet Saturday to wrap up the draft. Jackson was the only Vol selected in the seven rounds.

Ex-Vol Bryce Brown, a celebrated freshman tailback in 2009 who transferred to Kansas State, went to Philadelphia on the 229th pick in the seventh round.

Brown will bring fresh legs to the Eagles. He gained 460 yards at UT but carried only three times at Kansas State before quitting the team.

Quarterback B.J. Coleman, another former Vol, was picked by Green Bay near the end of the seventh round, No. 243 overall.

Coleman played two years as a backup at Tennessee but left in the spring of 2010. He put up big passing numbers at Chattanooga the past two seasons and was picked by the Packers on a day when Boise State’s Kellen Moore and South Carolina’s Stephen Garcia went undrafted.

Jackson’s selection at 137 was the latest entry point into the draft for Tennessee since 1975, when punter Neil Clabo went on the 258th pick. Gibril Wilson was the 136th pick in 2004.

The Vols have had at least one draftee every year since being shut out in 1963. The only other year since then that UT has produced just one pick was 2009, ironically, when Ayers went to Denver in the first round.

Jackson and tailback Tauren Poole were the only Vols invited to the NFL Combine. Jackson also represented UT at the Senior Bowl in January.

Poole signed a free-agent deal with Seattle on Saturday night, according to several websites.

Other reported free-agent signings included linebacker Austin Johnson with Baltimore and banished defensive back Janzen Jackson with the New York Giants.

Malik Jackson got a lot done in a short time at Tennessee.

He played his first two years at Southern Cal, then transferred to UT in 2010 and was immediately eligible because the Trojans were banned from postseason play.

Jackson played 25 games at UT, recording eight sacks. He was second-team All-SEC in 2010 and a first-team pick in 2011.

He became the 30th defensive lineman picked in the 2012 draft and the 330th Vol chosen in draft history.

While he played both tackle and end at UT, he’ll be used exclusively outside in the NFL. Jackson played at 267 pounds in 2011 but has bulked up to 285.

“I kind of felt a little small at defensive tackle in the SEC,” Jackson said, “but I just realized it’s all about technique and going out there wanting to really know what you’re doing. That’s what I did and feel like I started to get an upper edge on plays.

“But I feel really good at 285. I’m really comfortable. I’ve really been working at the defensive end area this offseason. I’m just ready to go in there and compete for a job.”

Jackson said leaving USC and spending two years at Tennessee prepared him for this day:

“I just wasn’t really happy at USC after Pete Carroll left and I took my talents somewhere else to really show what I have to the next level and I did and it worked out perfectly for me. I couldn’t be happier.”

By the time Northern Illinois quarterback Chandler Harnish was the 253rd and final pick of the draft, the SEC had provided its usual stampede.

Alabama led the way with eight, followed by Georgia (7) and South Carolina (6). Even Kentucky and Vanderbilt topped Tennessee with two picks each.

Ole Miss and Auburn each had but one pick. Florida had only two.

One other East Tennessean heard his named called. Coty Sensabaugh, a cornerback from Kingsport Dobyns-Bennett and Clemson, was picked by the Tennessee Titans in the fourth round.

UT’s slim contribution comes one year after Luke Stocker (4th round) and Denarius Moore (5th round) were the only Vols selected.

The solitary pick this year reflected not only Tennessee’s downturn on the field but also its youth. In a best-case scenario, the Vols could be back strong in the 2013 draft.

Follow Mike Strange at http://twitter.com/strangemike44 and http://blogs.knoxnews.com/strange.

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Comments » 38

SummittsCourt writes:

Congrats, and no better team mate than Manning!

RockyToptoNeyland writes:

Good for Malik, hope Tauren gets drafted too

born2ride writes:

Malik and Peyton representing UT in Denver.

baldingalum writes:

I predict that he will make it and play for some time. He is strong, quick, played inside and out. AND, most importantly, he is a bright young man.

Best wishes in the Mile High City Malik.

Olcrow writes:

good luck big guy!your team has one heck of a quarterback,(and no my names not not Phil).

BigBadVol writes:

Thanks Malik for helping out the Volunteer nation when we needed it. You have shown great pride in being a Volunteer and for that I will always be grateful. I predict you will do well in the NFL. Good luck! VFL!

Smokey91 writes:

The Broncos got a heck of a player in the fifth round. I think he will do well in the NFL.

jack4444 writes:

in response to born2ride:

Malik and Peyton representing UT in Denver.

And Robert Ayres.

PUL4VOLS writes:

Good to hear this and I wish him well in the Mile High city. That D needs some help for sure.

gatorstomper writes:

I don't understand the NFL. This guy is at least a 3rd rounder. What does it matter if some one isnt the perfect size? He played against the SEC and dominated. the position he needs to play is anywhere near the defensive line

nocleats writes:

The fact that the Vols 1st pick of this years Draft is a 5th rounder, (who CDD picked up) and last years draft was about the same, shows just how difficult the situation Coach Dooley walked into, was. There were years where TN had 7 selected by the end of the 2nd round.

volfanz writes:

Good luck Malik! My absolute favorite player of 2011.....Underestimated and unrelenting....This guy had the most heart and will be much missed!

MeanieT writes:

Congrats

ProfessionalHandicapper writes:

A guy who couldnt get on the field for a real team transfered to UT and now drops to the 5th round. Vandy has a second rounder and a 7th rounder and Marve didnt go pro as he has a job with a nice law firm and going to be a Judge. UT is so much better now that Fulmer, Chavis, Cutcliff, Garner, Kippy, and Trooper are gone..Hilarious. Even App State did better than UT in the draft.

nocleats writes:

in response to ProfessionalHandicapper:

A guy who couldnt get on the field for a real team transfered to UT and now drops to the 5th round. Vandy has a second rounder and a 7th rounder and Marve didnt go pro as he has a job with a nice law firm and going to be a Judge. UT is so much better now that Fulmer, Chavis, Cutcliff, Garner, Kippy, and Trooper are gone..Hilarious. Even App State did better than UT in the draft.

This NFL class would be Fulmers would it not? Malik was a pick up by Dooley. Cant blame the lack of NFL talent last year,this year or next year on CDD. His guys will start appearing in 2014 draft, then we will know more.

Bubba_Knows writes:

By far the best player on the team. 5th round is a steal! Another reason to become a Bronco Fan.

Bubba_Knows writes:

in response to nocleats:

This NFL class would be Fulmers would it not? Malik was a pick up by Dooley. Cant blame the lack of NFL talent last year,this year or next year on CDD. His guys will start appearing in 2014 draft, then we will know more.

That's what we are afraid of!

UT4prez writes:

in response to ProfessionalHandicapper:

A guy who couldnt get on the field for a real team transfered to UT and now drops to the 5th round. Vandy has a second rounder and a 7th rounder and Marve didnt go pro as he has a job with a nice law firm and going to be a Judge. UT is so much better now that Fulmer, Chavis, Cutcliff, Garner, Kippy, and Trooper are gone..Hilarious. Even App State did better than UT in the draft.

Just one question. So what?

I'm not saying I don't care at all and that I don't want the best for UT but in the grand scheme of things, so what? You take pleasure in others being down. Good for you. Vandy had a decent team last year. I don't see them repeating their success this year but you never know. I actually hope they do, as long as we continue beating them. Anyway, I don't really have much of a point but then again you don't either, at least not one anyone wants to hear.

Rather than coming on here with your malice and disdain why not try talking sports? I don't mean quoting your same stuff about the 3 big sports over and over either.

lavette12389 writes:

its a shame that Bryce Brown was drafted and Poole wasnt. Poole has talent but needs some polishing. IF he wasnt trying to do so much every snap he would have had a little bit more production this past yr. thats aside from our lack of push on the OL

etu_vol_fan writes:

Dooley has to win this year, period! I hope that he does because the 2013 recruiting class is shaping up to be pretty good from what I've read. 8 wins should be attainable and if he doesn't get it then Dave pulls the trigger. He will get someone that will. Don't let us down, Dooley!

10seVol85_Part_Deux writes:

in response to ProfessionalHandicapper:

A guy who couldnt get on the field for a real team transfered to UT and now drops to the 5th round. Vandy has a second rounder and a 7th rounder and Marve didnt go pro as he has a job with a nice law firm and going to be a Judge. UT is so much better now that Fulmer, Chavis, Cutcliff, Garner, Kippy, and Trooper are gone..Hilarious. Even App State did better than UT in the draft.

Just gets dumber with every post.

So, where was Vandy in last year's draft? What's that you say? Nobody from Vandy? So, you're saying that, even with Dooley coaching, UT has done better than the mighty Commode whores? How can that be?

Now, Appy State? Well, if Appy State had maybe 3 or 4 players drafted, I might be inclined to say you had a point, even if a stupid one. However, since any team in the country can have one really good player, it's hardly significant that Appy State happened to have 1 guy who was good enough to be picked in the 2nd round.

Oh, and Marve? Really? Could it be that he wasn't drafted because he just isn't that good? NFLDraft.com has a grading system for prospects, and Marve scored in the lowest category. Nobody expected him to be drafted, period.

HooRay_Vol writes:

in response to lavette12389:

its a shame that Bryce Brown was drafted and Poole wasnt. Poole has talent but needs some polishing. IF he wasnt trying to do so much every snap he would have had a little bit more production this past yr. thats aside from our lack of push on the OL

I second that. He will sign as a FA. Will likely know in the next couple days. He will get a shot. Hope he does well.

BIVOLAR_BEARE writes:

Good job Malik, work hard and you'll make that roster..As far as Poole is concerned, he can now pursue his career as an NFL FA..But, not being able to run against tucky & MTSU only proves to NFL scouts that you are not draft worthy..Go out and prove the naysayers wrong..Good Luck..

flatrock writes:

in response to ProfessionalHandicapper:

A guy who couldnt get on the field for a real team transfered to UT and now drops to the 5th round. Vandy has a second rounder and a 7th rounder and Marve didnt go pro as he has a job with a nice law firm and going to be a Judge. UT is so much better now that Fulmer, Chavis, Cutcliff, Garner, Kippy, and Trooper are gone..Hilarious. Even App State did better than UT in the draft.

Best-ever Vandy team turns out 2, count-em 2, draftees; worst-ever UT team turns out 1 draftee...BTW, why was it Maryland would have rather shut down football than to have promoted James (DiNardo) Franklin?

hcjournals#206623 writes:

This is the year. We need to be back. Tired of this.

bigdisbig writes:

in response to UT4prez:

Just one question. So what?

I'm not saying I don't care at all and that I don't want the best for UT but in the grand scheme of things, so what? You take pleasure in others being down. Good for you. Vandy had a decent team last year. I don't see them repeating their success this year but you never know. I actually hope they do, as long as we continue beating them. Anyway, I don't really have much of a point but then again you don't either, at least not one anyone wants to hear.

Rather than coming on here with your malice and disdain why not try talking sports? I don't mean quoting your same stuff about the 3 big sports over and over either.

Well said my friend.

BIVOLAR_BEARE writes:

in response to orangesheep:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Hey DA, all the coaching in the world can't make sub par talent into NFL players..Face it, UT is down talent wise, but they have some real talent at WR,OL,LB,DB and QB coming up..

flatrock writes:

in response to orangesheep:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

You might want to get back with your physician- the meds aren't working...

mrvol2u writes:

in response to orangesheep:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Bah, bah, baaah! Could the lack of draft picks be an indication of the lack of talent Dooley has had to work with? Could the number of players lost in the coaching transitions have had anything to do with the low number of draft picks from the Vols and maybe even the less than stellar play we have been having?

No way! Must be all coaching!

Thanks to Malik Jackson for hanging in there and helping a defensive line that would make anyone blush without him. I think Denver hit a home run. He played really well at DT and was very impressive when he played DE.

Thanks All-Vol Mr. Malik Jackson.

Go Vols!!!!

tvol71 writes:

Keep working, Malik Jackson, and I think you will do well in the NFL. Thanks for your effort for the Big Orange.

Can't believe that Brown, who's done nothing was drafted and Poole wasn't. Doubt Brown will go anywhere with his attitude.

orangeman1 writes:

in response to tvol71:

Keep working, Malik Jackson, and I think you will do well in the NFL. Thanks for your effort for the Big Orange.

Can't believe that Brown, who's done nothing was drafted and Poole wasn't. Doubt Brown will go anywhere with his attitude.

I can only guess it had to do more with size/strength/speed than attitude and dedication. I hope Poole will end up somewhere, but even if he doesnt, he has a college degree from the University of TN and plenty of opportunities in the real world for a person of his drive and character to succeed.
As for Malik. He did a lot for UT and made it to the NFL. Congrats to him.

CroKev writes:

It's really shocking that the Boise State QB wasn't drafted.

GloryDays writes:

in response to nocleats:

This NFL class would be Fulmers would it not? Malik was a pick up by Dooley. Cant blame the lack of NFL talent last year,this year or next year on CDD. His guys will start appearing in 2014 draft, then we will know more.

Kiffin ran off most of Fulmer's players. All the trolls hurt Fulmer's recruiting ability. Dooley and Hamilton screwed evering thing else up.

10seVol85_Part_Deux writes:

in response to kns_loves_2_remove:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

We have a new candidate for stupidest commenter.

murrayvol writes:

in response to 10seVol85_Part_Deux:

We have a new candidate for stupidest commenter.

It's no contest. This guy wins hands down.

KikknT writes:

So much competition, but the Broncos would probably be a good fit. Kind of enjoy watching that team play, now & again.

VolGrad writes:

in response to ProfessionalHandicapper:

A guy who couldnt get on the field for a real team transfered to UT and now drops to the 5th round. Vandy has a second rounder and a 7th rounder and Marve didnt go pro as he has a job with a nice law firm and going to be a Judge. UT is so much better now that Fulmer, Chavis, Cutcliff, Garner, Kippy, and Trooper are gone..Hilarious. Even App State did better than UT in the draft.

You are a real piece of work, aren't you? Good job twisting the facts. Maybe you should apply for a job with NBC.

None of us, not even the most rabid "Fulmer-haters" on here ever talked about getting rid of Cutcliffe, Garner, Kippy or Trooper. As a matter of fact, Fulmer's failing was in being unable to replace Coach David Cutcliffe after he left Tennessee.

You try to imply that we wanted to see them all... gone. Hey, I'd take Fulmer back in a heartbeat if he could convince Cutcliffe to join the staff again. Those were the best years. Heck, I bet most "Fulmer-haters" would agree to those terms.

You are a freaking idiot. This is Tennessee, home of legends both on and off the gridiron, the Vol Army and Navy, the Hill, Neyland Stadium and Rocky Top. We may be down but not for the count. We have a tradition of winning unlike anything you've experienced, and we will be back. Get your venom spewing flappers out of here and return to that rock you crawled out from under.

This is Big Orange Country! Go Vols!!!

VolGrad writes:

Hey, they forgot about Woody Paige. :D

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