Former Maryland football tight end Chigoziem Okonkwo has been selected in the fourth round with the 143rd overall pick by the Tennessee Titans in the 2022 NFL Draft.
Okonkwo is the second Maryland player to be selected in the draft, behind safety Nick Cross who was drafted by the Indianapolis Colts with the 96th overall pick.
Okonkwo missed the entire 2020 season due to health complications, so he was an unknown commodity entering the 2021 season. However, the six-foot-two, 238-pound tight end immediately garnered attention from NFL scouts.
Okonkwo had 52 catches for 447 yards and five touchdowns during the 2021 season. He was particualry valuable in the red zone as an athletic target for quarterback Taulia Tagovailoa. He also proved to be a solid blocker. Okonkwo was named a Big Ten Honorable Mention following the season.
At the NFL draft combine this past April, Okonkwo started to turn even more heads when he displayed his freakish athletic nature. Okonkwo posted a 4.52 40-yard dash time, the fastest among tight ends.
“He has the right mindset, mentality,” Maryland tight end coach Mike Miller said. “He’s a weapon. He can block, he can catch, run routes and he’s dynamic with the ball in his hands.”