Tennessee Titans 2022 fourth round pick and tight end Chigozim Okonkwo was among excellent students of the team in the mandatory mini-camp last week, catching several touchdowns during two open practices.
Okonkwo thinks he did a ton of progress so far it’s the offseason, and his quarterback Ryan Tannehill agrees.
“Chig did a great job for us,” Tannehill said. Jim Wyatt of Titans Online. “He has made great strides this spring. I am proud of the way he came, learned to do, and we will continue to push him to do so. But just physically, to see his size, his strength, his speed, how he can play through contact, he definitely gives us another weapon.”
It remains to be seen how much the Titans will use this new weapon in 2022 as Okonkwo looks to start the season as the No. 3 tight end behind Austin Hooper and Jeff Swaim.
If Okonkwo wants to completely surpass Swaim in the depth chart and get more snaps, he will have to improve as a blocker. For now, the Maryland product is at least performing well enough to play a role, no matter what.
Offensive coordinator Todd Downing says the Titans asked Okonkwo to “do a lot” in the offseason, but thinks the rookie “handled it well.”
“We asked him to do a lot,” Downing said. “We threw a lot on him. I think he handled it well. I think he is hungry and wants to please. Obviously, there are some new roles and some tasks that we gave him. They will always come with a small learning curve. But I think he does a great job with it.”
Tight Ends coach Luke Steckel expressed his excitement about what he has seen in Okonkwo so far, but notes that there is still a lot of work to be done.
“I think he will be the first to tell you that there is still a lot to learn and a lot to improve,” Stekel said. “But he showed some glimpses, some flashes of some of the things he can do, and that certainly got us excited.”
After the obligatory mini-camp ended, Okonkwo got some extra work. visit to Tite End Universitywhere he worked with some of the best players in his position in the NFL.
“It’s going to be a great experience for me to just see literally the best tight ends in the league and pore over their brains for three days and just find out what they’re doing, what they’re looking at in passing and fire up the game,” Okonkwo said ahead of the event. Turron Davenport of ESPN. “I definitely feel like it will be a short vacation for me to learn a lot about football.”
The Titans will have a month-plus before returning to training camp, and Okonkwo will spend some of that time in Georgia trying to acclimate to the heat he will face in Nashville in late July and August.
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