From receiving just one FBS offer to All-MAC defensive end, Maxx Crosby achieved another milestone in his football career Saturday morning.
The Eastern Michigan defensive end was selected by the Oakland Raiders as the 106th overall pick of the fourth round in the 2019 NFL Draft. Crosby was the first Eastern Michigan player selected in 2019, the fourth from the MAC, and the 11th defensive end off the board.
In his two years as a starter in Ypsilanti, Crosby haunted backfields with 18.5 sacks, 35.5 tackles for loss, and 127 total tackles. The 6’5”, 247 pound defensive end made his name known with an aggressive play-style, where he forced a combined eight fumbles in the 2017 and 2018 college football seasons. In each of those seasons, Crosby was named First Team All-MAC.
His 11.0 sacks in 2017 tied for sixth in the FBS. The talented pass rusher will join a Raiders team that ranked dead last in sacks in 2018 with 13.0. That’s 17 fewer sacks than the Patriots and Giants, who tied for 30th/31st in the category. Oakland also struggled with creating turnovers, forcing just five fumbles a season ago, also fewest in the NFL. Crosby is the second defensive end the Raiders have selected this draft, following up the No. 4 overall pick Clelin Ferrell out of Clemson.
Ferrell is a likely day one starter for the team that’s still trying to fill the void left by last September’s Khalil Mack trade. Crosby will compete with other defensive ends including 2018 third round pick Arden Key, 2016 third round pick Shilique Calhoun, and free agent acquisition Josh Mauro from the Cardinals.
Crosby is the first Eastern Michigan draft selection since Pat O’Connor in 2017. After O’Connor landed to the Lions that spring, Crosby’s career as a starter for the Eagles was born. He is now the highest draft selection out of Eastern Michigan since defensive end Jason Jones went to the Titans in the second round of 2008, 54th overall.
For more on Crosby, we caught up with him to discuss his unlikely journey in his football career from Colleyville, TX, to now, Oakland, CA.