STARKVILLE, Miss. — Former Mississippi State offensive tackle Charles Cross was selected by the Seattle Seahawks with the No. 9 overall pick in the first round of the 2022 NFL Draft on Thursday, becoming the 15th MSU player to be drafted in the first round.
The Seahawks are getting an elite offensive tackle prospect with great size, athleticism and technical ability. Cross is one of the most polished and talented pass blockers in the draft and has all the tools to be a Day 1 starter. He also has enough strength and physicality to be solid in the running game.
A native of Laurel, Mississippi, Cross was a two-year starter for the Bulldogs. He started 12 games at left tackle in 2021 as a redshirt sophomore and was a first-team All-SEC selection. Per Pro Football Focus, the 6-foot-5, 310-pound offensive tackle earned the top pass-blocking grade in the Southeastern Conference (84.9), the second-highest run-blocking grade (87.2) and second-highest overall offensive grade (86.7). He allowed just two sacks on 919 pass-blocking snaps in 2021 and did not allow a quarterback hit all season.
As a redshirt freshman in 2020, Cross started 10 games. He ranked No. 4 nationally in pass-blocking snaps (528) and was MSU’s top-graded offensive lineman on five occasions during that season. He went on to earn a spot on the All-SEC freshman team.
Coming out of Laurel High School, Cross was rated as a five-star prospect and the No. 1 prospect out of Mississippi by 247Sports and Rivals. He was a standout performer in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl and committed to MSU on Dec. 9, 2018.