Skip to main content

USC's Alijah Vera-Tucker Taken By New York Jets In First Round Of 2021 NFL Draft

Apr 29, 2021

LOS ANGELES —USC offensive lineman Alijah Vera-Tucker was selected by the New York Jets in the first round of the 2021 NFL Draft on Thursday (April 29), as the 14th pick.

Vera-Tucker is USC's 512th all-time NFL draftee, the most of any school. He also is USC's 83rd first rounder, second most behind Ohio State's 85. He continues USC's streak of having a draftee every year since 1939, tied with Michigan. USC maintains the longest active streak (20 years) with a player drafted in the Top 3 rounds.

This is the second consecutive year that USC has had a first round offensive lineman, after tackle Austin Jackson was the 2020 Draft's 18th pick by the Miami Dolphins.

Vera-Tucker is the 15th USC offensive lineman drafted since 2004 and the highest selected since tackle Matt Kalil was the 2012 Draft's fourth pick by the Minnesota Vikings.

He is the sixth Trojan picked by the Jets since 2009 (joining quarterback Mark Sanchez in 2009, running back Joe McKnight in 2010, defensive end Leonard Williams in 2015, quarterback Sam Darnold in 2018 and offensive tackle Chuma Edoga in 2019; Sanchez, Williams and Darnold were first rounders like Vera-Tucker).

Vera-Tucker won the 2020 Morris Trophy as the Pac-12's top offensive lineman. He also made the All-Pac-12 first team and was an All-American honorable mention pick last season as a junior left offensive tackle.

He spent 2018 and 2019 playing offensive guard, starting on the left side as a sophomore when Pro Football Focus ranked him as the Pac-12's top guard after seeing significant action as a backup on the right side as a redshirt freshman. He redshirted in 2017 as a first-year freshman after earning prep All-American honors at Bishop O'Dowd High in Oakland (Calif.).

The 2021 NFL Draft continues with the second and third rounds on Friday (April 30) and then concludes with the fourth through seventh rounds on Saturday (May 1).

USC could have 7 players chosen in the 2021 Draft, which would be its most since 2011 (when it had 9). Looking to join Vera-Tucker as Trojan draftees are safety Talanoa Hufanga, wide receivers Amon-Ra St. Brown and Tyler Vaughns, defensive linemen Jay Tufele and Marlon Tuipulotu and cornerback Olaijah Griffin.

Gallery: (1-6-2021) Best of Alijah Vera-Tucker