Tennessee Titans rookie tight end Chigoziem Okonkwo was one of the most impressive passers on the team whenever he had the ball in his hands.
The 6-foot-2, 244-pound Georgian is an explosive runner who possesses a rare blend of speed and power for someone his size.
Okonkwo is currently averaging over 20 yards per catch while also being one of two tight ends in the NFL to have recorded multiple receptions of at least 40 yards — both in the past two weeks.
The frustrating thing about all of this is that you would think it would lead to more opportunities, but unfortunately that wasn’t the case.
There are two TEs in the NFL with multiple 40+ yard receptions this year:
-TJ Hockenson, a Pro Bowler and a former first-round pick with 62 goals.
-Chig Okonkwo the #Titans 4th round rookie with 13(!) discs
Please correct that!
— Sacrifice Todd Downing (@jlomas72) November 14, 2022
Okonkwo has rushed for 141 yards on seven catches in nine games. Even more confusing is the fact that he’s only been targeted 13 times in total this season.
It seems like Tennessee sporadically teases the fanbase with her explosive rookie tight end, only to walk away from him completely for some reason.
Someone needs to let the Titans offensive coaching staff know that it’s not a crime to use the inexperienced rookie playmakers who are far more explosive than the veterans they often trot out there.
HUGE game for Chigoziem Okonkwo
on the 3rd 😤pic.twitter.com/ulMdCkxBNj
— Titans Nation (@TitansNationCP) November 13, 2022
On Monday, head coach Mike Vrabel admitted the team would like to get more involved with Chig, so that’s good news.
“We would like to [get him more involved]’ Vrabel said of Okonkwo. “We’re going to keep trying to find ways to get him the football… We’re going to keep trying to find ways to involve everyone and do things that help us. Yesterday [Chig] came away with a big catch. We’ll see where it goes this week.”
While limited, the rookie tight end has still churned out more yards from contact (87) this season than the rest of the Titans’ passcatchers (excluding running backs).
The Maryland product also separates as much as anyone else on the team when actually allowed to run a route. According to Next Gen Stats, Okonkwo has posted the following over the past three games:
- 3.77 meters behind the Texans
- 2.24 yards against the Chiefs
- 2.8 yards against the Broncos
In fact, the Titans’ tight end is the only player on the team to eclipse at least two yards in each of the last three games.
Okonkwo is by no means a perfect tight end, but it’s becoming increasingly clear that he has one of the highest passing limits on the team right now.
Needless to say, it’s time for the Titans’ 32nd passing offense to stop babysitting their explosive rookie and instead find ways to properly utilize his unique abilities.