Only four Buckeyes were drafted during the 2024 NFL Draft ceremonies. This is the first time in over a decade that fewer than five Buckeyes were drafted. But that doesn’t mean that the dreams and admirations of those who didn’t get their name called are dashed. For four other Buckeyes, they will pursue their professional football careers via the undrafted free agent option.

Josh Proctor, former Ohio State safety, didn’t hear his name called during the 2024 NFL draft. Nonetheless, he’s seizing an opportunity with the Jacksonville Jaguars as an undrafted free agent. Despite early struggles, Proctor’s perseverance paid off with a standout season in 2023, earning him recognition in the All-Big Ten honors. Now, he’s determined to make his mark in the NFL, drawing inspiration from past successes of undrafted players.

Steele Chambers, a former Ohio State linebacker, faced a similar fate in the draft. Despite not being selected, he’s aiming for a roster spot with the Detroit Lions. Chambers’ versatility and athleticism make him a promising prospect, transitioning from running back to linebacker during his college career. With determination and hard work, he hopes to prove himself during rookie minicamps and OTAs.

Xavier Johnson, a former Ohio State wide receiver/running back, is also chasing his NFL dreams as an undrafted free agent with the Buffalo Bills. Despite starting as a walk-on, Johnson became a vital player for the Buckeyes, showcasing his versatility on offense and special teams. Now, he’s ready to bring his skills to the professional level, knowing that his ability to contribute in various ways could be his ticket to success.

Matthew Jones, a two-year starter at right guard for Ohio State, joins the Miami Dolphins as an undrafted free agent. With a solid college career and a knack for versatility on the offensive line, Jones aims to secure a spot on the Dolphins’ roster. His performance at Ohio State’s Pro Day showcased his potential to excel at the next level, and he’s eager to prove himself in the NFL.

Despite facing challenges as undrafted players, Proctor, Chambers, Johnson, and Jones are determined to make the most of their opportunities and pursue their dreams of playing professional football.