Alabama in the Pros

Former Tide LB Anfernee Jennings goes to Patriots at No. 87 in NFL Draft

Stephen Lew - USA TODAY Sports

The connection between Nick Saban and Bill Belichick hits again.

On Friday night, the New England Patriots drafted Anfernee Jennings of Alabama at No. 87 overall in the third round of the NFL Draft.

A native of Dadeville, Ala., Jennings was the ninth Crimson Tide player selected and second of third round.

RELATED: Terrell Lewis comes off the board at No. 84 to the L.A. Rams

He was taken three picks after Terrell Lewis, of whom the Los Angeles Rams chose at No. 84.

Jennings, a former four-star, was one of Alabama’s most productive defensive players last season. He totaled 83 tackles and carried the roster in tackles for loss (12.5) and sacks (eight), while having five pass breakups, eight quarterback hurries and one interception.

With the Patriots losing studs such as Danny Shelton, Jamie Collins and Kyle Van Noy in free agency, it needs to start retooling its defense and Jennings is a great start up front. He is a strong edge setter who can stuff running backs and affect the passing game.

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Stephen M. Smith is the managing editor and senior writer for Touchdown Alabama Magazine.  You can “like” him on Facebook or “follow” him on Twitter, via @CoachingMSmith.

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