First Round Surprise: Raiders take Ohio State CB Damon Arnette with 19th pick
Perhaps the biggest surprise of the first round of the 2020 NFL Draft involved former Ohio State cornerback Damon Arnette.
Arnette, who decided to return to Ohio State for his senior season in 2019, was selected with the 19th overall pick by the Las Vegas Raiders on Thursday night. He was the third Buckeye taken in the first round, behind teammates Chase Young (No. 2, Washington Redskins) and Jeff Okudah (No. 3, Detroit Lions).
The decision to return to Columbus for one more season clearly paid off.
Most mock drafts had tabbed Arnette as an early pick in the second round, and potentially even sneaking into the first round. Not many thought he’d be taken in the middle of Day 1, but he brings a strong skill set to the field. Jon Gruden didn’t want to pass on his talent.
Arnette finished the season with 35 tackles, eight pass break-ups, one forced fumble and an interception that he returned for a touchdown. He was considered to be one of the top defensive backs in this year’s draft, but was still expected to be a second-round selection.
So far, his selection at No. 19 is the surprise of the first round.