Daviyon Nixon declares for 2021 NFL Draft
Iowa's All-America junior defensive tackle ready for the next level
By Pat Harty
IOWA CITY, Iowa – Daviyon Nixon is now ready to literally cash in on his success as a football player.
Iowa’s All-America defensive tackle announced Wednesday on Twitter that he will skip his senior season to declare for the 2021 NFL Draft as a fourth-year junior.
Nixon’s NFL stock rose significantly during an eight-game season in which he performed at a star level. He was named the Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year, and is now poised to become Iowa’s next consensus All-American.
To be continued…..🐤💯 pic.twitter.com/OteA52AiUw
— DaviyonNixon (@DaviyonNixon) December 30, 2020
NFL Draft guru Mel Kiper Jr. recently had the 6-foot-3, 305-pound Nixon ranked 10th on his list of top prospects for the 2021 draft.
Nixon, a Kenosha, Wis. native, led the Big Ten in tackles for loss (33), tied for the conference lead in sacks (5.5), and had the most tackles by a Big Ten defensive lineman (41).
Nixon is also the only player in the country to be named a finalist for the Outland Trophy and Nagurski Trophy and a semifinalist for the Chuck Bednarik award.
His decision to declare for the 2021 NFL Draft makes perfect sense, as does Zach VanValkenburg’s decision to return to Iowa for a sixth season as a defensive end. VanValkenburg also announced his decision to return on Wednesday.
Nixon has nothing left to prove in college, whereas VanValkenburg still is evolving as a college player.
It would be great if Nixon stuck around and helped Iowa win a Big Ten title. But there is no guarantee that would happen, but there is always the risk of injury.
And there is just too much money involved for Nixon to take that risk under the circumstances.
Former Alabama offensive tackle Jedrick Wills, selected by the Cleveland Browns at No. 10 in the 2020 NFL Draft, signed a contract worth about $19.7 million, including a signing bonus of around $11.9 million.
Needless to say, that is life-changing money, and Nixon is ready to start being paid for his immense talent.
He gave Iowa three years, after spending one year in junior college, and has just kept getting better.
It now is easy to see why Alabama coach Nick Saban offered Nixon a scholarship while Nixon was attending Iowa Western Community College in Council Bluffs.
Nixon is a rare talent, and a rare talent belongs in the NFL after four years in college.