For the second consecutive year, the Jets drafted a Wake Forest product.
A year ago they selected safety Josh Bush in the sixth round. This afternoon they picked fullback Tommy Bohanon with their lone selection in the seventh round, No. 215 overall.
Bohanon, a North Fort Myers, Fla., native, proved during his time at the Atlantic Coast Conference school that he is efficient at pass-catching out of the backfield. He hauled in 23 passes for 208 yards and five touchdowns, second on the Wake roster (and just two carries for 1 yard) as a Demon Deacons senior in 2012.
"I think I'll be able to fit in well," Bohanon said on a conference call with reporters. "I think that is one of my strong suits is my versatility and being able to block, run, as well as catch the ball out of the backfield. I think the West Coast offense suits me well and I think I'll be able to come in and do well in that type of offense."
Jets senior personnel executive Terry Bradway noticed plenty of bright spots when he was evaluating Bohanon.
"I think he's a really good kid, good size, runs well," Bradway said. "I'm very impressed with the way he catches the ball. He showed it in games, showed it in the Senior Bowl that he's a good catcher out of the backfield. A lot of the qualities of the traditional fullback, he's got those."
In two different games last season Bohanon had a pair of receiving touchdowns, Sept. 29 against Duke and Oct. 25 vs. No. 18 Clemson. The 6'1", 246-pounder was skilled at picking up the blitz and was labeled as one of WFU's top blockers. He also lined up some at tight end and played special teams.
From a strength standpoint, Bohanon benchpressed 225 pounds 36 times, which was the No. 1 mark at the combine among running backs and fullbacks.
His high school, North Fort Myers, has produced a few notable NFL players over the years, such as Pro Football Hall of Famer Deion Sanders and 1999 AFC Defensive Player of the Year Jevon Kearse.
Bohanon said he knew he could reach the NFL one day, but the biggest key to making sure his dream turned into a reality was whether he was dedicated enough.
"It was always my dream and it was always a possibility to me," he said. "I just knew I had to work hard to be able to get to it."
Bohanon's selection marks the third player the Jets have drafted out of Wake Forest. But the first was 53 years ago, when they took G Nick Patella in the very first AFL draft. Patella never played with the Jets or in the pros, and it took five decades before they returned to Wake to take Bush and now Bohanon.