- The Washington Times - Thursday, July 12, 2018

The NFL supplemental draft isn’t as glamorous as the league’s regular draft in April. There’s no overproduced television event for it. Prospects don’t wear expensive, custom-tailored suits — nor do they have the option of waiting anxiously in a green room.

Instead, the supplemental draft, which takes place every July, is essentially a silent auction with teams able to submit a bid for the available pool of players.

So for Virginia Tech’s Adonis Alexander, a candidate to be selected from this year’s crop, that meant sitting in his room playing the popular video game Fortnite — waiting for his phone to ring. 

The call came.

Alexander, a 6-foot-2 cornerback, was drafted Wednesday by the Washington Redskins in the sixth round. Washington will lose a sixth-round pick in the 2019 draft.

Ruled academically ineligible for his redshirt senior year, Alexander can now continue his football career, this time on a professional level.

“I definitely made some mistakes at Virginia Tech but I’m using those — just learning from them,” Alexander said Thursday on a conference call. “Using them to help form a better character, form myself as a man. I’m trying to benefit from the things I did in the past in a good way.”

Alexander said he tried to be “completely honest” with teams in the pre-draft process.

Besides being ruled ineligible, Alexander was arrested in 2016 for marijuana possession. He was suspended for three games in college, two of them being in 2017 for violating team rules. The 21-year-old announced in June he would be leaving Tech to pursue the NFL.

Alexander described himself as an “immature high-schooler” coming into college. He said he has changed since then, focusing more on doing the right thing.

“I definitely matured throughout the past year and the situations have nothing but built better character, made me stronger, made me want to persevere through this whole process even more than I did before,” Alexander said.

Alexander is the third Hokie the Redskins have drafted this year. In April, Washington selected defensive tackle Tim Settle in the fifth round and cornerback Greg Stroman in the seventh round. Defensive backs coach Torrian Gray also held the same position at Tech from 2006-15.

At the time he was taken, Alexander said he was playing Fortnite with Settle.

On the field, Alexander will add to the Redskins’ reworked depth at corner. Washington lost Kendall Fuller (traded to Kansas City) and Bashaud Breeland (unsigned) in the offseason, while signing veteran Orlando Scandrick. The Redskins will have a competition in training camp to determine their No. 2 and No.3 starters at the position.

Alexander said he gives the Redskins another “ball-hawking defender.” Over three seasons at Virginia Tech, he recorded seven interceptions and 125 tackles. He has also spent time playing safety.

He added he doesn’t have a preference of playing either safety or corner, but enjoys the competitive, one-on-one nature of going against wide receivers.

“This is a golden opportunity for me,” Alexander said. “Being able to play with coach Gray, being able to play with former teammates, I feel like it was the best opportunity I could’ve gotten.”

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