by Christian Mott
The 2021 NFL Draft class for the Cougars was a great one as five players got drafted from the program. With the rise of the Cougars during the Zach Wilson era, will this year’s team see similar talent selected into the league? It’s never too early to see who could be part of the next wave of NFL talent. Here are three players who will make a impact this fall and could see their draft stock rise as a result.
Junior – Wide Receiver
Gunner Romney in 2020 proved to be Zach Wilson’s deep threat. Opposite Dax Milne last year, Romney put up solid numbers. In 2020, he caught 39 balls for 797 yards and two touchdowns. The eye popping part was his incredible 19.7 yards per reception. His build also is a standout trait at 6’3” and 195 pounds.
He has the size to box out smaller corners. Now with Milne in the NFL, Romney will take on a larger role in the BYU offense. He will be far from a top name in the draft but he should be the first Cougar off the board in 2022. He is projected to be selected around the late third or early fourth round.
Sophomore – Running Back
The unsung hero of the BYU Cinderella story last year has to be Tyler Allgeier. After largely being a backup running back and playing linebacker the year before. his third year was finally his chance to be the guy and he didn’t disappoint. Last year he was a heavy hitter as he rushed for 1130 yards 13 touchdowns and an insane 7.8 yards-per-carry. With burst, a good frame and toughness, there’s plenty to like about him.
Additionally, he will be the primary focus of the offense following the Zach Wilson era. One thing that hurts him is the de-valuing of the running back position. However, his ability to create the big run will be hard for teams to ignore. Because of this, his range is one of the furthest. He could be selected anywhere from mid-fourth to mid-sixth in 2022.
Chaz Ah You
Senior – Linebacker
This entry comes with a catch as his career with the Cougars has been up an down. Last year, he suffered a season ending injury after one game. However, in 2019 he showed flashes and good coverage ability. His health will be in question, but if he can stay healthy this fall he will be a large part of the defensive success for the Cougars.
When it comes down to him at the next level with linebackers needing to be more and more athletic, he fits the bill as an all-purpose linebacker. Barring a monster season, his injury concerns may limit where he lands in 2022. He should be selected around the mid-seventh round.
Overall, BYU’s goal is to win games. The Cougars may have a rising name and this list four months from now can be wrong. That’s the beauty of sports. You never know the result until it happens. Until then, these are the predictions for the next generation of NFL draftees from BYU.
Featured image courtesy Jaren Wilkey, BYU Photo