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Roman Wilson: 'Wouldn't be surprised' if Jim Harbaugh drafts '5 or 6' Michigan players
National Football League

Roman Wilson: 'Wouldn't be surprised' if Jim Harbaugh drafts '5 or 6' Michigan players

Updated Apr. 12, 2024 10:20 a.m. ET

The Los Angeles Chargers currently hold nine picks in the 2024 NFL Draft, giving Jim Harbaugh the opportunity to help fulfill his prophecy that Michigan will break the record for most players selected from one school in a draft.

Roman Wilson is bracing for his college coach to do just that. The Michigan wide receiver and draft prospect shared on the "NFL on FOX Podcast" that he's anticipating Harbaugh and the Chargers to draft many former Wolverines players. 

"I wouldn't be surprised if like all nine of us end up going [to the Chargers]," Wilson said, referring to the team's nine draft picks. "But seriously, like at least five or six. I think he's going to take a lot of us."

The Chargers' top draft selection is the fifth overall pick. Wilson's highly unlikely to be the Chargers' selection with that pick, as many project him to be drafted on Day 2. If Wilson is unable to sneak into the first round, he's open to the idea of being selected by the Chargers in the second round. He admitted he's been eyeing Los Angeles' picks "a little bit."


"I'd love to go out there and play, especially at pick 37," Wilson said. "I wouldn't be upset with that. I'd get to reunite with my coach and maybe some of my former teammates. I'd absolutely love that."

Luckily for Wilson, the Chargers need help at receiver. They traded Keenan Allen to the Chicago Bears for a fourth-round pick and released Mike Williams earlier in the offseason. However, there's some belief that the Chargers could use the fifth pick to select one of the top receiver prospects (Marvin Harrison Jr., Malik Nabers, Rome Odunze) in the draft. 

However, the Chargers likely won't be the first team to draft a Michigan player. J.J. McCarthy will almost certainly be a top-10 pick, with many mock drafts featuring him as a top-five selection.

McCarthy's recent rise in mock drafts has caught some by surprise, as he didn't put up the gaudy stats that some of the other top quarterback prospects had in college. But after McCarthy led Michigan to a national title this past season, Wilson isn't surprised that his teammate's draft stock continues to climb.

"I told him when he was coming out that I thought he was gonna be a top-10 pick. Before he declared, he was top-20 or whatever," Wilson said. "You put on the film, you're going to see a guy who — I call him a go-getter. He's gonna go out and win a game. He's a great locker room guy. He has unbelievable talent in his arm and his legs. He can make any throw. He's a great leader and people want to follow that type of guy. He's just a great guy to have around.

"I feel like in five years, looking back at it, I feel like he'll definitely be one of the better quarterbacks in this draft. He's unbelievable in some of the things I've seen him do. His hunger to be great is definitely there, too. He's just a great guy."

FOX Sports' Joel Klatt recently included Wilson (No. 47) and McCarthy (No. 14) in his top 50 prospect rankings, believing both players had lower numbers than their talent suggests due to Michigan's run-oriented offensive scheme. Relative to other top quarterback-receiver duos in college, McCarthy and Wilson didn't connect much. But when they did, it was often for a big play, as Wilson had 48 receptions for 789 yards and 12 touchdowns last season.

J.J. McCarthy throws a 22-yard TD DOT to Roman Wilson as Michigan grabs a 14-3 lead over Ohio State

A few of those big connections came in Michigan's win over Alabama in the Rose Bowl. The most impressive was arguably when McCarthy made a one-handed snag on a trick play before throwing the ball downfield to Wilson for a 20-yard gain as he was being hit. 

Wilson admitted that he was amazed by McCarthy on the play, but he also believes McCarthy has a knack for making plays in the clutch. 

"That's just that 'it' factor, the clutch factor," Wilson said. "He doesn't really fall or succumb to that pressure. I feel like playing at Michigan, even just him being a five-star [recruit], he's just had so much pressure on him for about his whole life and he's handled it so well. I feel like he's going to show up on any stage, no matter what the circumstance is."

Beyond McCarthy and Wilson, one of the other Michigan players who seems to be on the rise during the draft process is Mike Sainristil. The All-American corner had six interceptions last season and was recently ranked as Klatt's 49th-best prospect in the draft.

Wilson shared he was impressed with many things about Sainristil, but his smooth transition from receiver to cornerback tops them all. 

"He's a dog," Wilson said. "I got to see his transition from receiver to DB and become one of, if not the best, nickel in the country — and it's only Year 2 for him. He has so much more room to get better and grow. He's a jack of all trades. I mean, he could go out and play receiver right now, return punts, kick return, DB, linebacker, anything. He's a dog. 

"Whatever team gets him is getting a dude who's gonna play in the league for a lot of years."

Wilson, McCarthy and Sainristil are just three of the many standout players from last year's Michigan team who are expected to be selected in this year's draft. They had 18 players get invited to the combine earlier in the draft process.

Jonathon Brooks & Roman Wilson in Joel Klatt’s ‘plant the flag’ players

Whether Michigan can break Georgia's record for most players selected from one school in a draft (15 in 2023) remains to be seen, but Wilson was happy to be a part of the talented group that helped the program turn things around in Ann Arbor so quickly. 

"I take a lot of pride in that," Wilson said of being on a team with several future NFL players. "I was part of that team in 2020, when we were down at Michigan. Just seeing the culture shift, the team change and the coaches change, everyone just adapted, got better and just build up this program from the ground up. At the time, Coach Harbaugh used to tell us, ‘No one really talks about us anymore. No one really cares. Let's create some noise around here.'

"We did. Hopefully, I can stay as long as possible. I just love Michigan for what they did for me and what we built there. It means a lot to me."


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