Devante Downs selected by Minnesota Vikings in 7th round of 2018 NFL draft

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It took until the third day of the 2018 NFL draft for a Cal football alumnus to hear his name called, but the moment arrived Saturday afternoon for inside linebacker Devante Downs.

With the 225th pick, the Minnesota Vikings made their seventh-round selection, selecting the 6’3”, 245-pound native of Mountlake Terrace, Washington, whose stellar collegiate career was cut short during his senior season because of injury.

Downs led the Bears with a career-high 84 tackles during his junior year in 2016 and was in the running for Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year prior to his 2017 injury in a game against Washington State.

He received Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Week honors in two of Cal’s first three games last season and was nominated as a team captain for the remainder of the season between the team’s sixth and seventh games.

The Vikings finished as runners-up in the NFC last season, falling just short of a Super Bowl appearance to the eventual champions, the Philadelphia Eagles. Minnesota kicked off its draft by selecting former UCF cornerback Mike Hughes in the first round.

Josh Yuen covers women’s tennis. Contact him at [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter @joshcal2020