The wait is finally over for Yawin Smallwood.
When he declared for the NFL Draft after his Junior season, Smallwood was projected to be a second round pick. Unfortunately the over-analysis of draft season seems to have taken a major hit on his stock and with three picks left his name was called off the board.
On the Atlanta Falcons, Smallwood will join fellow Husky Robert McClain in Atlanta's linebacking corps. Smallwood has a chance to contribute immediately on special teams and could break into the rotation for an Atlanta defense which struggled last year.
Seventh round picks typically don't have a very high success rate in the NFL, but we have reason to believe in Yawin. He has the talent, character, production and intelligence needed to succeed. His draft stock took a hit because of his 40 time but, just as you have to be wary of people who rise in the rankings between January and May, there's reason to believe he can do well in the NFL.
This makes two UConn Huskies drafted this year, both in the seventh round. Shamar Stephen is a Viking and Smallwood joins the Falcons. There are a number of Huskies who will get looks in the UDFA market, we'll be sure to keep tabs on them as we hear the news.