By Parrish Alford
OXFORD – Ole Miss offensive tackle Laremy Tunsil, like wide receiver Laquon Treadwell earlier this afternoon, has declared for the NFL draft.
The moves were widely anticipated for both players. Both are projected early first-round picks when the draft takes places late next April in Chicago.
Tunsil has been projected by some as the No. 1 pick overall. The draft order was finalized Sunday, and the Tennessee Titans hold the No. 1 pick.
Tunsil, a Lake City, Fla., native, served a seven-game NCAA suspension this season, but his impact was dramatic upon return.
He started six games, and Ole Miss went 5-1 during those games, the only loss a 53-52 overtime decision to Arkansas in which the Razorbacks remained alive on a lateral play on fourth-and-25.
Ole Miss averaged only 88 rushing yards in four games against Alabama, Vanderbilt, Florida and Memphis this season – games in which Tunsil did not play. The Rebels averaged more than 200 yards rushing in the games Tunsil did play.
The Rebels averaged 411 yards and three sacks allowed in three games without Tunsil. Ole Miss averaged 506 yards and less than one sack per game in the five SEC games in which Tunsil played.