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Ohio State Defensive Back Denzel Ward Selected 4th Overall By The Cleveland Browns

Denzel Ward
Eleven Warriors via Flickr

NFL

Ohio State Defensive Back Denzel Ward Selected 4th Overall By The Cleveland Browns

With three years of game film under his belt, Denzel Ward finished his collegiate career notching 67 total tackles (47 solo), 24 pass breakups and two interceptions. He earned consensus All-America honors in 2017, thanks to a career-best season with 17 passes defended — 15 pass breakups and two interceptions, good for fourth-highest single season total in Buckeye history. Ward finished his Ohio State career having played in 38 games with 13 starts.

The fact that he didn’t often crack the starting lineup isn’t entirely surprising given the host of NFL talent that he was buried behind on the depth chart. Ohio State had three DBs drafted in the first round of last year’s draft and six defensive backs in the past three drafts. Those backs were Eli Apple, Vonn Bell, Lattimore, Malik Hooker, Gareon Conley and Damon Webb.

Ward’s final game in a Buckeye jersey came in the Big Ten Championship against Nebraska, which the Buckeyes won 27-21. In that game, Ward came up with a big interception in the first quarter to prevent the Badgers from getting on the board first.

Widely regarded as the top cornerback in this year’s draft class, Ward only helped his case with his 40-yard dash time (4.32). Everyone will know why they call him “Flash” Ward — and combine performance.

Ward ran track at Nordonia High School and was a state champion the 200 meters. His personal bests are 10.49 seconds in the 100 meters and 21.38 seconds in the 200.

High Praise For Ward

Ohio State cornerbacks coach Kerry Coombs has high praise for Ward.

“Denzel’s got a ton [of swagger],” Coombs said. ” … [Ward] just does his business. He shows up every day, works very hard, prepares himself very well. I’m really proud of him.”

“Then last year, he had a great camp. The first few games they put him in the [cornerback] rotation, he just did what he was supposed to do.”

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