The Seattle Seahawks will be bringing in one of the 2019 NFL Draft’s more polarizing prospects for a top-30 visit, per Rob Rang, with former Mississippi State defensive tackle Jeffrey Simmons joining a growing list of prospects set to visit Seattle prior to the draft.
Simmons, widely considered one of the 10 most talented prospects in the entire draft, comes with a pair of red flags. The first, and certainly most important, stems from a video that surfaced in 2016 of Simmons striking a woman who was fighting with his sister. Simmons was found guilty of malicious mischief and simple assault, but was never suspended by the Bulldogs for the incident.
In the three years that followed, both on and off the field, Simmons was by all accounts a model student and athlete. Mississippi Today highlighted Simmons’ story late last year, mentioning, among other things, that Simmons had landed on the SEC Academic Honor Roll and won an award for his work in the community, classroom and on the field. As much as one can redeem themselves from such an incident, Simmons seemingly did—not to discount the severity of his actions by any means.
In February, the second red flag arose. While training for his pro day (Simmons was not invited to the Scouting Combine), Simmons tore his ACL, all but wiping out what would’ve been his rookie season. As a result, a surefire top-10 pick will now slide towards the end of round one.
On the field, Simmons is an undeniable blue chip talent. In three years at Mississippi State, Simmons posted seven sacks, 33 tackles for loss and an astonishing 163 tackles from the interior. Simmons is a true three down lineman in a league that thrives on rotations.
Whichever team selects Simmons will be betting that the past is in the past, and that when 2020 arrives, he’ll be fully recovered from his torn ACL. They’ll be selecting an outstanding prospect, and now the Seahawks will have a look at him.