Left Offensive Tackle: Derek Sherrod
I’m cheating on the offensive line and tight end. Finding the best offensive linemen is hard enough since there are no records and such for them, but tight ends is just as hard because they often don’t rack up the huge numbers like a receiver does. As a result, I’m just putting one guy for each position.
Sherrod was a key component to the resurgence by Mississippi State after Dan Mullen was hired to lead the football program. In 2009, Mullen implemented a run heavy scheme which saw Anthony Dixon become arguably the best running back in the conference that same year. \
In 2010, behind the running of Vick Ballard and Chris Relf, the Bulldogs surged back to a 9-4 record which was capped off with wins in the Egg Bowl and Gator Bowl. Sherrod was then drafted in the first round of the 2011 Draft by the Green Bay Packers. His professional career has been marred by injuries, but he is trying to jump start it with Kansas City Chiefs in 2015.
Right Offensive Tackle: Floyd “Pork Chop” Womack
Pork Chop had to be on this team. Why? BECAUSE HOW ARE YOU GOING TO LEAVE A PLAYER OFF NAMED PORK CHOP?!?!
Seriously, Pork Chop Womack was one of the best to ever play along the line for Mississippi State. And he might have been a guard, I honestly don’t remember, but I want him on my team. So I’m putting him at Tackle for the purpose of this post. Womack went on to play in the NFL after his time as a Bulldog.
He played for the Seahawks who drafted him from 2001 until 2008. He then played two years for the Cleveland Browns. Womack probably would have had a much more illustrious career at the pro level, but he was constantly fighting off injuries.
Left Offensive Guard: Randy Thomas
Thomas only played for two seasons at Mississippi State, but he made quite an impression in those two years. Thomas was part of a trend during the Jackie Sherrill days of finding top notch JUCO talent and inserting them to play quality minutes in the SEC. Maybe Dan Mullen can start doing the same.
Randy Thomas was named 1st team All SEC in 1998. Thomas was drafted by the New York Jets in 1999 in the second round of the draft. He played a total of 11 seasons with the Jets and Washington Redskins.
November 1, 2015; Oakland, CA, USA; Oakland Raiders quarterback Derek Carr (4) is congratulated by guard Gabe Jackson (66) after throwing a touchdown pass against the New York Jets during the first quarter at O.co Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports
Right Offensive Guard: Gabe Jackson
Gabe Jackson has often been described in two words: Road Grater. Jackson contemplated an early leap to the NFL after the 2012 season. He likely would have been drafted, but it would have been in the late rounds. Jackson used the 2013 season to improve and watched his draft stock go up as well.
He was drafted in the third round of the NFL Draft in 2014 by the Oakland Raiders. Jackson was a starter for the Raiders during his rookie season, and many who cover the NFL consider him to be one of the best young offensive linemen in the league.
Jackson is one of the players the Raiders are now rebuilding their franchise around. Quarteback Derek Carr needs protection up the middle, and Jackson not only held his own, but thrived against many of the NFL’s best. He was considered by many to be one of the best rookie offensive linemen in the league in 2014.
Assuming there are no injury problems, Jackson is going to be around for a ling time for the Raiders. He is on a very cap friendly deal since he is playing under his rookie contract. But it shouldn’t be too long before Jackson sees a big payday for all he has done on the Raiders’ offensive line.
Center: Kent Hull
Kent Hull was a legend at Mississippi State. He was such a great offensive lineman, when the state of Mississippi decided to start honoring the best lineman in the state, the award was named after him. Hull started his professional career with the New Jersey Generals of the USFL before joining the Buffalo Bills in 1986 and was an immediate starter. Hull would have a long and productive career that included four consecutive appearances in the Super Bowl from 1990 until 1993.
Sadly, Hull passed away at the very young age of 50 in 2011. He died from a gastrointestinal bleed that stemmed from chronic liver disease.