As we approach the XFL’s 2023 draft, there are plenty of new players on the horizon to become familiar with. One of those is Taylor Powell, a versatile linebacker out of Sacramento State. Powell wrapped up his college career last year, and now sets his sights on a future filled with professional football.
We were lucky enough to catch up with Powell recently in an interview. In today’s piece, we’ll be taking a look at what he’s accomplished so far – and what the road ahead might hold for the talented young rookie.
High School Career
Powell played for one of Arizona’s highest profiled schools: Salpointe Catholic. During his stint with the Lancers, Taylor made an impact immediately. Since the school had just lost a few of its premier linebackers the year prior, Powell was thrown into a starting role almost instantly.
He thrived in this position, and amassed over 400 tackles in four years at the school. On top of that, he added 10 sacks and 33 tackles for loss to his resume.
In addition, Powell spent some time as a running back in high school – playing on both sides of the football. Taylor says that this greatly helped him improve as a linebacker, giving him valuable insights to make him into a better defender.
He finished his HS career as the Salpointe all-time leader in tackles. Powell was also a two-time all state selection, alongside being a four-time all section selection in Arizona.
Northern Arizona University
After receiving several offers from different universities and colleges, Powell ended up connecting with some coaches at Northern Arizona. This turned out to be an excellent move, as Taylor fit right in. He performed quite well throughout his years with the team, even setting a record for the longest pick six (85 yards).
Unfortunately, in 2018 things didn’t go as planned. After having two spectacular outings to start the season, Powell suffered a shoulder injury – sidelining him for the rest of the season. Ultimately, this would be the last time Taylor played with the Lumberjacks; posting almost twenty tackles and two sacks in just two games.
Due to coaching changes in 2019, Powell ended up transferring to Sacramento State. At first, it wasn’t too eventful. Taylor didn’t see the field much that year – and then, COVID hit. 2020 was completely wrecked, robbing more opportunities from Powell.
That didn’t stop him, though. In 2021, Powell came out with a vengeance, posting 53 tackles and a few TFL. The team went on to win the Big Sky Championship that year, which was a major victory for the school and its programs.
Taylor finished his college tenure with a bang. He ultimately proved that hard work and determination pays off, dominating his final season despite all of the uncertainties and injuries he faced the previous few years.
One of Taylor Powell's career pick six's. His ability to jump routes makes him into a stealthy choice at linebacker. pic.twitter.com/fUdsqoNLNR
On top of that, he was at the XFL showcase in Tampa Bay this past summer. Taylor certainly turned some heads there, as he received an official invite to the XFL’s draft pool. The league plans on having their draft at some point in November, so Powell will be a name to watch when that happens.
To watch our full interview with Taylor Powell, check out the Youtube link below:
Do you think Taylor Powell will be drafted by an XFL team? What do you think he can provide to a professional football squad? Let us know down in the comments below, or join the conversation on Discord!