NEW YORK CITY, N.Y. -- Coastal Carolina University wide receiver Jerome Simpson has been selected by the Cincinnati Bengals in the second round of the 2008 NFL Draft April 26. Simpson was the 46th overall pick and the sixth wide receiver taken in the draft. He is just the second player from the Big South Conference ever drafted by a NFL team, following teammate Tyler Thigpen who was taken in the seventh round by the Minnesota Vikings last year and spent the entire season with the Kansas City Chiefs.
On the results listed on the official NFL Combine website this year (jwww.nfl.com/combine), Simpson led all receivers with a standing broad jump of 11'4", eight inches longer than any other wide receiver and the longest of any position so far. He also tied for second with a 37.5" vertical leap and tied for eighth with a 40-yard dash time of 4.47. The Reidsville, N.C. native did not do the bench press while competing in the 60-yard shuttle, 20-yard shuttle and other position-specific drills. He then upped his vertical leap at CCU's Pro Day, going 41" in front of the scouts.
Simpson's Bio_Is the Big South's all-time leading receiver in yards (2,720) and touchdowns (44) and ranks fourth with 161 career receptions... Became first receiver in league history with back-to-back 10-touchdown seasons (16 - 2006, 11-2007)... Was the FCS leading active career touchdown receiver (and fourth in FCS history) with 44... Despite being double-covered most of the year still managed 41 catches (t-5th) for 697 yards (3rd) and 11 touchdowns (#1 in league) on the year... Recorded 19 catches (3rd) for 290 yards (4th) and seven scores (1st) in Big South action, helping CCU to a second-place finish... Had at least one touchdown catch in all four league games, including five catches for 91 yards and two TDs against Gardner-Webb... Also had two touchdown catches against Liberty and VMI... Had at least two receptions in all 11 games... Ranked sixth in scoring with 66 points... All-American & First Team All-Big South in 2006 and Second Team in 2005, as well as being Big South Freshman of the Year in 2004.