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Derek Barnett Drafted #14 by Philadelphia

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The man who broke Reggie White’s all-time sack record at Tennessee will follow in his footsteps with the Eagles.

Tennessee v Texas A&M Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images

Reggie White would be pleased.

After having no players taken in the 2015 and 2016 NFL Drafts, the Vols started off what should be a busy 2017 as Derek Barnett was taken in the first round by Philadelphia at #14. He is the highest Vol taken since Eric Berry and only the third Tennessee player taken in the Top 15 (Berry, Jerod Mayo) since 2002.

Barnett is best known for breaking Reggie White’s career sack record at Tennessee with 33 in three years. He’s also long been defended by orange faithful as the more productive defensive end in comparisons with Texas A&M’s Myles Garrett:

Derek Barnett vs Myles Garrett

Player Sacks SEC Sacks Ranked Sacks Winning Record Power 5
Player Sacks SEC Sacks Ranked Sacks Winning Record Power 5
Barnett 33 29 10 19 32
Garrett 32.5 12 6 17.5 16.5

Not only was Barnett a consistent threat with at least 10 sacks in all three of his years in orange, he did excellent work against Tennessee’s stiffest competition. As a freshman he benefited greatly from Curt Maggitt’s presence, but he was the primary focus of opposing offensive lines the last two years and it didn’t slow him down at all.

For more on Barnett’s biggest moments at Tennessee, here are our five favorites from earlier this week. And for an in-depth breakdown of his skills as a pass rusher, check out former Vol Stephen White’s analysis at SB Nation.