La Tech's Patton and Mills selected in 2013 NFL Draft

[Information provided by: Louisiana Tech Athletics]

Louisiana Tech had two players selected in the 2013 NFL Draft on Saturday as wide receiver Quinton Patton was a fourth-round and offensive tackle Jordan Mills was a fifth-round selection.

Both players were surprisingly still available when the NFL Draft began on Thursday with the fourth round and it took until the 128th selection overall before the San Francisco 49ers selected Patton, a 2012 All-America wide receiver.

"We had a very high evaluation of Quinton ... and we were surprised he was there and are very fortunate to acquire him," 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh said on ESPN Saturday. "We liked the way he competes in big games against very good competition. We really like that he's a competitor, and when the ball is in the air, he is competing for it."

One round and 35 picks later, the Chicago Bears selected Mills with the 163rd overall pick.

"When the Illinois number popped up, I dropped down on my knees in tears," Mills told The (Monroe) News-Star, as he watched the draft with family and friends from his Napoleonville home. "It was just liberation, a weight lifted off my shoulders. It's been a long three days. You can't get frustrated or nervous watching the draft. People say you can go here and there, but it's satisfying to hear your name called nationally."

Patton recorded 1,392 receiving yards in 2012 for the Bulldogs, a mark that ranks fourth all-time in the Tech record books. His name caught fire nation-wide as a tied a school record with 21 catches against Texas A&M in a nationally-televised contest from Independence Stadium.

Mills (6-foot-5, 316 pounds) started all 24 games the past two seasons at Louisiana Tech on the line and helped Tech rank seventh in the nation in sacks allowed in 2012 while paving the way for Kenneth Dixon to receive Freshman All-America honors as he broke three Marshall Faulk's NCAA Freshman records.

ESPN draft analyst Mel Kiper said Mills held his own against Texas A&M defensive end Damontre Moore and in the Senior Bowl.