LOUDOUN COUNTY, VA– The Washington Redskins selected linebacker Preston Smith in the second round (No. 38 overall) and running back Matt Jones in the third round (No. 95 overall) of the 2015 NFL Draft. The Redskins acquired the Nos. 95, 112, 167 and 181 overall selections from the Seattle Seahawks in exchange for the No. 69 overall selection.
Smith (6-5, 271) played four seasons at Mississippi State across the 2011-14 seasons, appearing in 47 games with 24 starts. For his career, he recorded 134 tackles (27 for loss), 16 sacks, five forced fumbles and two interceptions. As a senior, he became the only player in SEC history to be named SEC Defensive Lineman of the Week for three consecutive weeks. Smith was selected to the Senior Bowl following his 2014 campaign in which he recorded at least one tackle for loss in 12 of the team's 13 games.
Smith was named first-team All-SEC defensive end as a senior in 2014 after starting all 13 games. He led his squad with 15 tackles for loss, 15 quarterback hurries, nine sacks, and also contributed two interceptions (including one returned for a touchdown), two forced fumbles and two blocked kicks. He ranked sixth in the SEC in sacks and fifth in tackles for loss.
As a junior in 2013, Smith started 11 of the 12 games in which he played, compiling 44 tackles (29 solo, 6.5 for loss) with nine quarterback hurries and 2.5 sacks. During his sophomore year, he played in 13 games, leading the team with 4.5 sacks among his 35 total tackles.
Smith, 22, attended Stephenson H.S. in Stone Mountain, Ga., where he played on an 11-1 squad as a junior that earned a Region 2 title. He was born on Nov. 17, 1992.
Jones (6-2, 235) played three seasons with Florida before declaring for the 2015 NFL Draft after his junior season. For his collegiate career spanning 2012-14, he started 15 of the 28 games in which he played, recording 297 carries for 1,431 yards (4.8 avg.), 19 receptions for 100 yards and 12 touchdowns (11 rushing). He rushed for more than 100 yards on four occasions, including three games over 150 yards.
In 2014, he started in 10 of the 11 games in which he played, finishing with a team-high 817 rushing yards on 166 carries (4.9 avg.). Jones collected seven touchdowns, including six on the ground. He suffered a season-ending knee injury his junior year after compiling 339 rushing yards on 79 carries (4.3 avg.) and two touchdowns through five games.
Jones, 22, attended Armwood H.S. in Seffner, Fla., where he helped carry his team to a 15-0 record and the FHSAA Class 6A Championship his senior year. He was born on March 7, 1993.
NOTES ON THE SELECTION OF PRESTON SMITH
- Smith is the second selection in the tenure of General Manager Scot McCloughan and the 10th selection of the Jay Gruden era.
- Smith is the 441st selection made by the Redskins in the Common Draft era (since 1967) and the 35th second-round selection in that time frame. He is the 53rd second-round selection by the Redskins all-time since the institution of the draft in 1936.
- Including the selection of Trent Murphy in the 2014 NFL Draft, Smith's selection marks the second straight season the Redskins have used a second-round pick on an outside linebacker.
- Smith's selection at No. 38 marks the highest the Redskins have selected a linebacker since using the No. 16 overall pick on Ryan Kerrigan in the 2011 NFL Draft.
- Smith is the fifth Mississippi State product selected by the Redskins all-time, joining C Dave Price (1938), B Charlie Yancey (1943), C Charley Cadenhead (1946) and CB Fred Smoot (2001).
- Smith's selection at No. 38 marks the highest the Redskins have taken a Mississippi State product, surpassing Price's selection at No. 39 in the 1938 NFL Draft.
- Smith is the 11th player selected by the Redskins at No. 38 all-time, joining T Wilson Groseclose (1936), B Dick Todd (1939), T Bill Kirchem (1940), C George Bujan (1945), B Jack Weisenburger (1948), B Mike DeNoia (1949), RB Tom Barrington (1966), DE Spain Musgrove (1967), LB Tom Roussel (1968) and WR Cotton Speyrer (1971).
- The Redskins' 11 selections at No. 38 are tied for their most all-time at any selection. The team has also made 11 all-time selections at No. 148 and 160.
NOTES ON THE SELECTION OF MATT JONES
- Jones is the first selection by the Redskins with the No. 95 overall pick in team history.
- Jones is the third selection in the tenure of General Manager Scot McCloughan and the 11th selection of the Jay Gruden era.
- Jones is the third running back selected in the third round by a team featuring Scot McCloughan in its front office. The other two third-round backs selected by McCloughan teams were Frank Gore and Glen Coffee, drafted by San Francisco in 2005 and 2009, respectively.
- Jones is the 442nd selection made by the Redskins in the Common Draft era (since 1967) and the 32nd third-round selection in that time frame. He is the 62nd third-round selection by the Redskins all-time since the institution of the draft in 1936.
- With the selection of Jones following the second-round selection of linebacker Preston Smith, the Redskins chose Southeastern Conference products with consecutive selections for the first time since drafting Auburn products Carlos Rogers and Jason Campbell in the first round of the 2005 NFL Draft.
- Jones' selection at No. 95 marks the highest the Redskins have selected a running back since drafting Ladell Betts with the No. 56 overall selection in the 2002 NFL Draft.
- Jones is the 13th University of Florida product selected by the Redskins all-time, joining B Bill Corry (1943), T Arch Cassidy (1955), B Joe Brodsky (1957), E Lou Pelham (1958), E Dave Hudson (1960), E Russ Brown (1964), HB-K Hal Seymour (1966), RB Tony Green (1978), DB Jimmy Spencer (1991), WR Taylor Jacobs (2003), OL Maurice Hurt (2011) and TE Jordan Reed (2013).
- Jones is the sixth Florida Gator drafted by the Redskins in the Common Draft era, tied for 13th-most of any school in that time frame.
- Jones is the first player drafted by the Redskins with a pick acquired by trade in the 2015 NFL Draft. The Redskins have now made third round selections with picks acquired by trade in four of the last five drafts.