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Steelers select Smith in sixth round

Sutton Smith
Northern Illinois
6-0, 232
Saint Charles, Mo.
Francis Howell High School
6th Round – 175th Overall

Became the first two-time first team All-American in Northern Illinois football history…two-time MAC Defensive Player of the Year (2017 and 2018)…ranks third all-time in program history in sacks (30.0) and second in tackles for loss (58).

First Team All-American…recipient of the MAC's Vern Smith Leadership award (MVP) and repeated as the league's Defensive Player of the Year…Ted Hendricks Award finalist…amassed 61 total tackles (43 solo), breaking his own school record for sacks in a season (15.0) with 2.0 coming in the MAC Championship game…posted at least one tackle for loss in 12 of 14 games, and had a sack in nine games…earned MAC West Defensive Player of the Week honors with 2.0 sacks, two fumble recoveries, including a strip-sack vs. Ohio (Oct. 13)…collected a career-best 4.0 sacks, five tackles for loss, and an 85-yard fumble return for a touchdown at Western Michigan (Nov. 20), earning his third MAC West Player of the Week honors…named Defensive MVP with a career high 10 tackle performance in the MAC title game vs. Buffalo (Nov. 30).

Program's second all-time Consensus All-American…MAC Defensive Player of the Year and Ted Hendricks Award finalist…broke NIU records for sacks (14.0) and tackles for loss in a season (29.5), and scored twice on fumble returns…generated 63 total tackles (43 solo)…earned MAC West Defensive Player of the Week honors three times…at Nebraska (Sept. 16), posted 2.0 sacks, six tackles and a pass defensed…posted a career-high 10 tackles with four stops for loss and 3.0 sacks vs. Kent State (Oct. 7)…made five-and-a-half tackles for loss and scored his second fumble return of the season vs. Western Michigan (Nov. 15), with a 58-yard score.

Posted 15 tackles (6 solo), a sack and two tackle for loss, appearing in 12 games as a reserve defensive end…recorded his first career sack at Western Michigan (Oct. 8).


Played at Francis Howell (Saint Charles, Mo.)…tallied 2,456 all-purpose yards with more than 2,000 from rushing and 32 total touchdowns…helped program to an 11-1 record and advance to the Missouri 6A state semifinals in 2014 senior season…tabbed 2014 St. Louis Dispatch All-Metro Offensive Player of the Year…gained 1,682 all-purpose yards and 18 total touchdowns as a junior.