(WIVB) — An athletic, hard-hitting linebacker coming out of Auburn and the SEC, Owen Pappoe brings in a wealth of experience to the team that selects him in this year’s NFL Draft.

Standing at 6’0 and weighing in at 225 pounds, Pappoe was one of the best tacklers in the SEC in 2022. He finished the season with 91 tackles, including three of them for a loss, a pair of sacks, two forced fumbles and an interception.

It was a good bounce-back year for Pappoe, who missed eight games in the 2021 season due to an ankle injury.

“Going into every season guys tell you stay healthy, stay healthy you kind of brush it off a little bit,” Pappoe said. “But after going through that junior year you see how important that is but I was really happy to make it through with no nix and bruises that made me miss any time.”

Pappoe, who is projected to be a day three pick, started 41 games for one of the SEC’s biggest brands over his four seasons. He was also a two-time captain for the Tigers.

The Bills still do have some needs in the middle of the defense. As someone who is projected to be selected later on in the draft, it is highly unlikely that Pappoe would make a big difference immediately if he were to be selected by Buffalo.

However, he says he made a big adjustment from the high school to the college level and is willing to do the same going from college to the NFL, while learning from veterans.

‘I’m pretty sure it’s going to be like it was going from high school to college,” Pappoe said. “But “I’m going to approach it from the same thing just put my head down and work and earn the trust of the vets around me so they know when I’m on the field with them I’m not a liability. I’m serious about my craft so the sky is the limit from there.”

Aidan Joly joined the News 4 staff in 2022. He is a graduate of Canisius College. You can see more of his work here.

Josh Reed is an award-winning journalist who has served as News 4’s Sports Director since 2015. See more here.