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Virginia Tech football: Tim Settle opening eyes in the NFL

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Rookie defensive tackle Tim Settle is making the most of his opportunities.

NCAA Football: North Carolina at Virginia Tech
Former Virginia Tech DT Tim Settle takes down a UNC quarterback in 2017.
Lee Luther Jr.-USA TODAY Sports

The Virginia Tech Hokies have a lot of holes to fill for the 2018 season. One of the biggest holes is at defensive tackle, after Tim Settle left Blacksburg with two years of eligibility remaining to enter the 2019 NFL Draft. Settle didn’t go as high as most predicted, ending up as a fifth-round selection of the Washington Redskins.

Most felt, especially those who closely follow the Virginia Tech football program, that the Redskins were getting a steal in Settle. After just a few days into his first NFL training camp, Settle is already turning heads.

On the second day of camp last week, Settle spent some time rotating with Washington’s first-team defensive line. Not bad considering Settle is a rookie taken in the later rounds of the draft.

Settle wasn’t just a body, though, he was out there making plays. Now, Washington’s first-round pick, defensive tackle Daron Payne, is out with a minor ankle injury, opening the door for Settle to entrench himself in Washington’s two-deep. Payne is only expected to miss a week or two of practice, but for rookie like Settle, that is an eternity. He has numerous practices to stand out in front of coaches and show them he belongs.

The Hokies will certainly miss Settle’s playmaking ability in the middle of their defense in 2018, perhaps as much, if not more, than any other of the departed stars. Now, Settle has his shot to become a contributor in the NFL and it could come sooner than most envisioned.