BOONE, N.C. – For the third time in the last two years, an App State alum was selected in the NFL Draft.
The Green Bay Packers took Shemar Jean-Charles in the fifth round (No. 178 overall) of the 2021 NFL Draft on Saturday. The Mountaineers’ All-America cornerback was the first Sun Belt Conference player selected in this year’s draft, and it represented the culmination of a remarkable college career for the Miramar, Fla., native.
After signing with App State as a two-star recruit, he sat behind all-conference cornerbacks Clifton Duck and Tae Hayes before becoming a starter in 2019 – his fourth year with the program.
Jean-Charles, known as “Sherm” to his teammates, made the most of his final two seasons.
As a first-year starter, Jean-Charles helped lead the Mountaineers to the 2019 Sun Belt Championship and a win over UAB in the New Orleans Bowl to cap an historic 13-1 season. His 45 tackles, nine pass breakups and first career interception in the bowl game helped set the stage for his senior year.
This past fall, he led all FBS players with 16 pass breakups and 17 passes defended (with one interception) en route to becoming the first App State player to be selected a first-team All-American. In addition to his first-team honor by the Walter Camp Football Foundation, he earned second- and third-team recognition from Sporting News, PFF College and Phil Steele. He was tabbed PFF’s Sun Belt Player of the Year and was invited to the NFLPA Collegiate Bowl and FBS All Americans Tropical Bowl, where he intercepted a pass.
Over his last two years, Jean-Charles’ 25 passes defended were the most in the nation. In 2020, he had the rare accomplishment of recording a higher forced incompletion rate (34.6%) than catch rate allowed (32.7%), according to PFF. He was targeted 35 times in single coverage and allowed only five catches while forcing 18 incompletions.
He helped App State go 52-13 with five bowl wins and four Sun Belt championships, including a 42-10 mark in four years as an active player.
Jean-Charles joins Darrynton Evans and Akeem Davis-Gaither as App State’s NFL Draft picks over the last two years. Evans was a third-round choice of the Tennessee Titans, and Davis-Gaither was picked in the fourth round by the Cincinnati Bengals last year.
App State has annually led all Sun Belt teams in NFL representation since joining the league in 2014. Last year, the Mountaineers had eight alums on NFL rosters, including playoff participants in Evans, Daniel Kilgore (Chiefs), Josh Thomas (Bills) and Kendall Lamm (Browns).
Jean-Charles is App State’s 30th NFL draft pick all-time and fifth since the Mountaineers moved up to the FBS ranks.