2021 NFL Draft: New England Patriots select Mizzou safety Joshuah Bledsoe in the sixth round

Eric Blum
Columbia Daily Tribune
Missouri's Joshuah Bledsoe (1) defends a pass against LSU's Terrace Marshall Jr. (6) on fourth-and-goal in the final moments of a Southeastern Conference game Oct. 10 at Faurot Field.

Missouri safety Joshuah Bledsoe didn't know if he'd hear his name called during the 2021 NFL Draft, as projections had him ranked anywhere from the fifth round to undrafted. 

The Houston-area native did get selected and is headed to the New England Patriots, who drafted Bledsoe with the No. 188 overall selection, the fourth pick of the sixth round. 

Bledsoe gained widespread attention for making the game-clinching defensive play against LSU last October, giving Missouri head coach Eli Drinkwitz the first win of his tenure against the defending national champion.

"(He's got) ice water through his veins and he's always been a humble child. He's always been a humble athlete. And he's not one to boast a lot," Anthony Williams, Bledsoe's high school coach, said last year. "He just lets his play speak for himself. ... He's been a leader through his actions since I've known him.

"And I just know that, if the game was on the line, I'm going to Joshuah Bledsoe win or lose. And I'm happy to deal with whatever the result is because I know I probably went with the best option that I had."

Bledsoe finished the 2020 season with 41 tackles, three tackles for loss, six pass deflections, one interception, one forced fumble and one fumble recovery. 

He's the fourth Missouri player selected in this year's draft after Nick Bolton (Chiefs), Tyree Gillespie (Raiders) and Larry Borom (Bears).

Contact Eric Blum at eblum@columbiatribune.com. Follow @ByEricBlum on Twitter.

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