On Day 1 of the 2021 NFL Draft that projects to feature a record seven athletes selected from Heritage in the same draft, the Denver Broncos selected Alabama CB Patrick Surtain II with the ninth overall pick.
Surtain II, the second corner off the board, joins a 25th ranked Broncos defense in 2020, according to Pro Football Reference, where his defensive prowess figures to improve the team’s secondary.
“It’s a very stacked defense,” Surtain II said in an interview after the Broncos pick. “I can’t wait to compete with those guys at a high level each and every day. I’m just very excited. I think when it’s all said and done, we’re going to be the No. 1 defense in the NFL.”
The former 2020 SEC Defensive Player of the Year and unanimous First-Team All-American collected a combined four career interceptions to go along with 27 passes defensed.
“The board just kind of fell where Surtain was there and we couldn’t pass him up. He was just too latent, too unique, too good off the field, too good on the field,” Broncos GM George Paton said. “I’m familiar with his Dad [Patrick Surtain, Heritage head coach], with his family. It was a home run for the Broncos to get Patrick Surtain.”