In his final season at Michigan, defensive end Taco Charlton flourished for one of the best defenses in college football and turned himself into a legitimate NFL prospect. Now, he’s a Dallas Cowboy.
Here’s what fans should know about the No. 28 overall pick in the 2017 NFL Draft?
Taco Charlton in 2017 NFL Draft
1. Taco does, indeed, love tacos.
At a young age, Charlton was given the nickname “Taco.” Since all of his friends then believed he enjoyed eating the famous Mexican entree, he attempted to avoid eating the food at all costs. However, his mindset changed once he arrived in Ann Arbor, Mich. Charlton even made his Twitter handle @TheSupremeTaco to encapsulate his love for the dish.
“Now, I love tacos all the time,” Charlton told Tony Paul of the Detroit News. “Whether it’s Taco Bell or I go make my own tacos or whatever.”
2. He and former teammate Jake Butt hail from the same area
Charlton and Butt grew up in Pickerington, Ohio, located just east from of Columbus. While the two went to different high schools, they became roommates as soon as they arrived on campus at Michigan. Evidently, Charlton was never bothered by Butt and the Pickerington North Panthers’ win over his Pickerington Central Tigers in their senior seasons. The eventual Michigan stars would also make the three-and-a-half hour drive back to their hometown together on occasion.
“We still knew each other and once we both committed we started to talk more than we did before,” Charlton told Mark Snyder of the Detroit Free Press. “Once we got here we were as close as can be. That’s my brother right there. We’re super close.”
3. He was only a full-time starter in his senior campaign
In Charlton’s first two seasons in a Wolverines’ uniform, he struggled to see the field on a consistent basis. Once he became an upperclassman, though, his playing time began to increase, and he amassed 5.5 sacks as a situational pass-rusher in his junior campaign. Last season, he started all 11 games at defensive end, racking up 10 sacks and 13.5 tackles for a loss. His sack total as a senior sits No. 10 all-time in Michigan history.
4. He’s full of potential
NFL.com’s Lance Zierlien wrote that he sees Charlton as a budding star down the road because of his ability to wreak havoc in opposing backfields. In his senior season, he recorded at least one sack in seven of his final 10 games, including a 2.5-sack performance against the arch-rival Ohio State Buckeyes in the Wolverines’ regular-season finale.
“While his production coming out of college will be modest, he could become a substantially better player as a pro if he’s committed to the weight room and willing to absorb coaching,” Zierlien wrote. “(He’s a) high-impact defensive end with all-pro potential is his ceiling. His floor is solid starter.”
5. Despite a slow start to his NFL career, he’s remaining positive
Charlton hasn’t gotten off to the start he might have envisioned in his rookie season, with only one tackle over his first two NFL games. Still, he is not the slightest bit discouraged.
“It comes, man,” Charlton told Drew Davison of the Star-Telegram. “Some plays just didn’t fall my way. I was close a couple times, it just didn’t fall my way. It happens. Go back to the drawing board, keep working on my moves and everything like that in practice.”
“The first two games, you see certain things you would’ve done this or did that, you could’ve made that play,” he added. “But it’s a long season. Things are going to happen. Plays just didn’t bounce my way or get run my way.”