The first two days of the NFL draft came and went, without a single player from the University of Michigan being drafted.
Finally, on Saturday, Denard Robinson’s name was called.
The Jacksonville Jaguars selected Robinson in the fifth round of the draft, with the 135th pick. It ended the speculation as to where Robinson would be picked — he was projected as high as the third round in the weeks leading up to the draft — and kept Robinson from becoming Michigan’s lowest first pick in the draft since 2009, when the Indianapolis Colts selected defensive tackle Terrance Taylor at No. 136.
“Of course you want to go higher, but I’m thinking this makes me hungry,” Robinson said during a conference call. “I’m not mad about it. I’m happy to be drafted and I’m ready to go to work.”
Robinson was one of two Wolverines selected in this year’s NFL draft; the New York Jets drafted defensive lineman Will Campbell in the sixth round at No. 178 as an offensive lineman.
Ohio State had two players selected on the draft’s third day after just one was taken Friday in the second round — defensive tackle Johnathan Hankins to the Giants.
Baltimore selected Buckeyes defensive end John Simon in the fourth round at No. 129, while Cincinnati selected offensive tackle Reid Fragel in the seventh round at No. 240.
“They’re just a tough, hard-nosed team and I feel that’s how I play the game,” Simon told BaltimoreRavens.com. “I’m just excited to be part of the organization and look forward to getting to practice.”
The Green Bay Packers selected Iowa cornerback Micah Hyde, a 2009 Fostoria graduate, in the fifth round at No. 159. Hyde was named the Big Ten’s Tatum-Woodson defensive back of the year. He had 240 tackles and eight interceptions in his four seasons with the Hawkeyes.
In 2012, Hyde was fourth in the Big Ten and 22nd in the nation with 1.22 pass breakups, and averaged 6.5 tackles.
“They [Iowa] do a nice job of coaching their guys,” Packers secondary coach Joe Whitt, Jr., said of Hyde. “He has a knowledge of different systems or schemes that we’re going to do, so he’ll fit in fine.”
Robinson began the 2012 season as one of the nation’s marquee players, but an injury to the ulnar nerve in his right arm limited him to two games in Michigan’s final five. The Jaguars selected Robinson as a running back and not as a wide receiver, as he entered the draft, or as a quarterback, the position where he flourished at Michigan and set the NCAA Division I-A rushing record for quarterbacks (4,495 yards).
Campbell had 44 tackles in 2012, a breakout season for him as a defensive lineman after three years of being regarded as a project.
Simon, the 2012 Big Ten defensive player of the year, is a 6-foot-1, 257-pound player whose strengths are his pass-rushing abilities and his versatility. He also played at outside linebacker and defensive tackle.
Simon had 45 tackles, nine sacks, and 14.5 tackles for loss in 11 games with the Buckeyes last season. Injuries, however, hampered Simon, but he said his health is “100 percent.”
The 6-foot-8, 308-pound Fragel moved from tight end to offensive line — a move that was made to help him reach the NFL — and became one of Ohio State’s top linemen in 2012.
FREE AGENTS: Six Michigan players will join teams as undrafted free agents, including Clay graduate Jordan Kovacs and Wauseon graduate Elliott Mealer. Kovacs, a safety, plans to sign with Miami and Mealer, an offensive lineman, plans to sign with New Orleans.
Defensive end Craig Roh will join Carolina, while receiver Roy Roundtree will join Cincinnati, linebacker Kenny Demens will join Houston, offensive linemen Patrick Omameh will join San Francisco, and Ricky Barnum will join Washington.
From Ohio State, linebacker Etienne Sabino will join the New York Giants, tight end Jake Stoneburner will join Green Bay, linebacker Nathan Williams will join Minnesota while fullback Zach Boren and cornerback Travis Howard will join Houston.
Contact Rachel Lenzi at: email@example.com, 419-724-6510 or on Twitter @RLenziBlade.