#2: Aaron Schobel
The 2001 NFL Draft was a monumental moment for the history of the sport as it saw larger than life names enter the league, of which many would re-write history.
Names such as the first overall pick out of Virginia Tech, Michael Vick and Pro Football Hall of Fame inductee, LaDainian Tomlinson. Another name worth mentioning of the ’01 draft class is defensive end Aaron Schobel out of TCU, who was selected by the Buffalo Bills in the second round with the 96th overall pick.
While at TCU from 1997 to 2000, Schobel was a standout player on the Horned Frogs’ defensive line. He would go on to receive First-team All-Western Athletic Conference honors in 1999 and 2000, and was the WAC Defensive Player of the Year in his senior in 2000 before entering the NFL Draft.
During his first season in Buffalo, Schobel surpassed expectations yet again. As a rookie, he was again a stand out player on the Bills defensive line playing alongside defensive tackles Pat Williams and Shawn Price and left defensive end, Phil Hansen. He recorded six-and-a-half sacks all while racking up another 43 combined tackles.
Schobel would go on to progress each and every year he was in Buffalo, progressing up to his career-high single-season combined tackle number of 71 and recorded 12 sacks in the progress. In the following 2006 season, Schobel earned his first Pro Bowl nod as a result of recording the league’s third-most sacks with 14, the leagues sixth-most tackles for loss and also racked up an additional 35 solo tackles. Schobel would earn another Pro Bowl nod in 2007.
Over his eight-year career in Buffalo, Schobel rocketed up the Bills’ all-time sack leader board where he currently sits second behind Hall of Famer and Bills legend Bruce Smith. He was released from the Bills in 2010; he never signed with another team and instead decided to walk away from the game entirely, leaving behind an illustrious career.