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Perhaps no player in the 2022 NFL draft helped their stock more during the pre-draft process than Georgia's Travon Walker.

After posting stellar workout numbers, the 6-foot-5, 272-pound edge-rusher, originally out of Upson-Lee High School (Georgia), strongly entered the mix as the draft's No. 1 overall pick.

In the end, Walker was the heavy favorite to go No. 1 overall and was, in fact, selected by the Jacksonville Jaguars first overall. 

Here's how he was rated as a prospect by the major recruiting services coming out of high school in the class of 2019: 


Ranking: 5-star prospect; Nation's No. 5 overall prospect, No. 2 defensive tackle, No. 1 prospect in Georgia

Notable: Walker weighs 13 pounds less than he did as a high school senior, which explains why he transitioned from defensive tackle to a run-stopping, athletic edge-rusher.

Interestingly, the Georgia product was No. 5 nationally - one spot ahead of Oregon's Kayvon Thibodeaux. 

247Sports projected Walker as a future first-round NFL Draft pick, comparing him to Kansas City Chiefs star Chris Jones. 


Ranking: 4-star prospect; Nation's No. 34 overall prospect, No. 4 defensive end; No. 4 prospect in Georgia

Notable: While Rivals was still quite high on Walker, he missed the five-star cut and was the No. 4 player in his home state.

Walker was listed behind solid Oklahoma-turned-Arkansas wide receiver Jadon Haselwood (No. 1), projected high NFL Draft pick and Clemson cornerback Andrew Booth Jr. (No. 2) and honorable mention All-Big Ten performance and Michigan defensive lineman Christopher Hinton (No. 3). 


Ranking: 4-star prospect; Nation's No. 46 overall prospect, No. 6 defensive end, No. 8 prospect in Georgia 

Notable: Putting together this series, ESPN is frequently the lowest on the projected top-10 picks.

They were the only service to name Derek Stingley Jr. as a four-star prospect, and didn't even have Walker as a top-seven prospect in his own state - none of the higher-rated players have even come close to Walker's draft status.

Still, he was listed a top-50 prospect nationally, which means ESPN had an NFL projection on Walker. 

Senior season highlights