Photo credit: sjsuspartans.com
By: Ana Kieu
For San Jose State University tight end Josh Oliver, a dream came true on the second day of the 2019 NFL Draft as the Jacksonville Jaguars’ first selection in the third round.
Oliver was the 69th overall selection in the Draft. He was the fifth tight end, the second from the 12-team Mountain West, and the second player from one of the three Bay Area schools that included Pac-12 Conference members Stanford and Cal to hear his name announced in the Draft so far.
“I like to pattern my game after Tony Gonzalez. As a freshman coming in (to San Jose State), my college coach showed me a lot of Tony Gonzalez tape and I’d like to do as much as he can,” Oliver said in his first interview with the Jaguars media. He will be united with new Jags offensive coordinator John DeFilippo, who had the same position at SJSU during the 2010 and 2011 seasons.
Oliver, the 6’5″, 250-lb tight end from Paso Robles, Calif., is the first SJSU player in 10 years to be chosen in the first three rounds of a Draft. In 2009, defensive lineman Jarron Gilbert, the 68th overall selection by the Chicago Bears, and cornerback Christopher Owens, the 90th overall pick by the Atlanta Falcons, were among the top 100 players drafted that year.
Oliver was a first-team All-MW choice as a senior in 2018. He caught a team-high 56 passes for 709 yards and four touchdowns. 38 of his receptions (67.8%) resulted in a first down, one of the top three percentages by a NCAA Division I FBS tight end last season. He concluded his college career playing in the 2019 Senior Bowl.
For SJSU, Oliver is the third tight end drafted by a NFL team since 1996. Brian Roche was a third-round draft choice, 81st overall selection, by the San Diego Chargers in 1996. In 2004, Courtney Anderson was an Oakland Raiders’ seventh round pick, 245th overall.