Vikings Select Clemson’s Booth with No. 42 Overall Pick

FILE - Clemson defensive back Andrew Booth speaks during a press conference at the NFL football...
FILE - Clemson defensive back Andrew Booth speaks during a press conference at the NFL football scouting combine in Indianapolis, Saturday, March 5, 2022. New England enters the NFL draft with eight total picks, including the 21st pick of the first round. Possible early targets include linebacker Nakobe Dean, receiver Kyle Phillips and cornerback Andrew Booth. (AP Photo/AJ Mast, File)(AJ Mast | AP)
Published: May. 1, 2022 at 12:49 AM EDT
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CLEMSON, S.C. — The Minnesota Vikings made cornerback Andrew Booth Jr. the first Clemson product selected in the 2022 NFL Draft, picking the athletic defensive back in the second round (No. 42 overall) on Friday evening.

Booth’s selection at No. 42 gave Clemson at least one Top 50 pick in all but two drafts since 2006. He becomes the 17th Clemson defensive back drafted during Dabo Swinney’s head coaching tenure and the third drafted by the Vikings in that span.

“They are getting, first of all, a great person with a great spirit to him,” Swinney said. “[He is] a guy that loves to play. From a football standpoint, they’re getting a rare corner: long, explosive, fast, a physical tackler at the corner position, which is really not always the case, with great ball skills. Very instinctive guy, and I think a guy that helps the team right away.”

From 2019-21, Booth appeared in 35 career games at Clemson with 15 starts. He finished his collegiate career credited with 75 tackles (5.5 for loss), 10 pass breakups, five interceptions, a sack and a fumble recovery (which he returned 21 yards for a touchdown) in 981 defensive snaps. Last season, he earned first-team All-ACC honors as he and teammate Mario Goodrich comprised the first single-school duo to sweep both first-team All-ACC cornerback honors since 1997.

The 2022 NFL Draft will resume at noon ET Saturday with Rounds 4-7.

Notes on the selection of Andrew Booth Jr.:

- Booth became the 70th player to have played for Head Coach Dabo Swinney to be drafted into the NFL, including the 11th second-round pick of Swinney’s tenure.

- Booth became the 17th defensive back (and 10th cornerback) to be drafted in the Swinney era.

- Booth became the sixth defensive back under Swinney to be selected in the first two rounds of an NFL Draft, joining Marcus Gilchrist (2011, Round 2), Mackensie Alexander (Round 2, 2016), T.J. Green (Round 2, 2016), Trayvon Mullen (Round 2, 2019) and A.J. Terrell (Round 1, 2020).

- Booth gave Clemson at least one Top 50 pick in 15 of the last 17 NFL Drafts, dating to 2006. The only drafts in that span in which Clemson did not produce a Top 50 pick were in 2009 and 2018.

- Booth was Clemson’s first selection in the 2022 NFL Draft, marking the fourth time in the last five drafts that Clemson’s defense has produced its first selection. A Clemson defender was the Tigers’ first selection in every draft from 2018-20 (LB Dorian O’Daniel in 2018, DE Clelin Ferrell in 2019, LB Isaiah Simmons in 2020) until QB Trevor Lawrence was selected first in the 2021 NFL Draft.

- Booth became the first cornerback to be Clemson’s first selection in a draft since 2006 when the St. Louis Rams selected Tye Hill with the No 15 overall selection. That was the second of consecutive drafts in which a corner was the first Clemson player off the board after the New York Jets made Justin Miller the first Clemson product selected in the 2005 NFL Draft.

- Booth became the ninth Clemson player selected by the Vikings all-time, joining G Brian Butcher (1983), LB Edgar Pickett (1984), RB Terry Allen (1990), LB Ed McDaniel (1992), LB Ashley Sheppard (1993), LB Chris Jones (1999), CB Mackensie Alexander (2016) and S Jayron Kearse (2016). Each of the Vikings’ last six selections from Clemson has come from the defense, including the last three from the defensive backfield.

- Booth became Clemson’s first selection with the No. 42 overall pick all-time.

- Clemson has now produced a second-round pick in four consecutive drafts, its longest active streak in any round.