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Ex-Mississippi State QB Tommy Stevens hopes Taysom Hill opened door for him

Ahmed Fareed joins Mike Tirico to discuss the Lions' pick at No. 3 in the NFL draft and explains what the implications will be from who they select.

Taysom Hill’s ability to do more than play quarterback has opened the door to more of an NFL career than he might have had if he’d just been a signal caller and one prospect entering the league this year is hoping for a similar opportunity.

Tommy Stevens was a backup quarterback at Penn State in 2016 when he asked to play special teams. Offensive coordinator Joe Moorhead began using him as an offensive piece instead and expanded that role during the 2017 season. Stevens threw 27 passes and three touchdowns, ran 27 times and caught 12 passes while scoring six touchdowns that year.

Stevens was hurt in 2018 and transferred to play for Moorhead in 2019 after Moorhead became the head coach at Mississippi State. He played quarterback when he wasn’t injured last year and earned an invite to the East-West Shrine Game, where he got time in front of NFL scouts.

He says he’s had video chats with the Saints and Chiefs while hearing from the Ravens and Jets. He’s also had a team ask to see tape of him running routes, which suggests a Hill-like role might be a possibility at the professional level.

“To see him succeed at the highest possible level, a very similar guy, similar body types, he’s able to make plays,” Stevens said, via Joel A. Erickson of the Indianapolis Star. “And it’s really cool to see him do it, possibly open up the door for other guys that are like me and him.”

The ability to help a team in multiple ways will likely earn Stevens a 90-man roster spot even if he doesn’t hear his name called during the seven rounds of this year’s draft.