NC State's Ikem Ekwonu gets picked in 1st round of NFL Draft
NC State offensive tackle Ikem Ekwonu is off the board.
Ekwonu was selected No. 6 overall by his hometown Carolina Panthers on Thursday night.
Ikem Ekwonu is staying HOME!
He's a Carolina Panther. pic.twitter.com/mOtqM9T0LX
— Saturday Road (@SaturdayRoad) April 29, 2022
He was a possibility as early as No. 3 overall to the Houston Texans, but LSU cornerback Derek Stingley Jr. ended up going in that spot. That meant Ekwonu fell slightly to No. 6.
He’s NC State’s first top-10 draft pick since Bradley Chubb went No. 5 overall in 2018. Before that, the Wolfpack’s last top-10 player was Mario Williams in 2006.
For this draft, Ekwonu was the first offensive player off the board. It’s the first time that the top-5 were all defensive players since the 1991 NFL Draft.
Ekwonu was a unanimous All-American for NC State in 2021. He was also first-team All-ACC. He also earned third-team All-ACC honors in 2020.
He figures to be a versatile offensive lineman for the Panthers, capable of playing either tackle spot. He also played guard at times at NC State.
Ekwonu is originally from Charlotte, North Carolina.