Chukwuma Okorafor 2018 NFL Draft Profile

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Chukwuma Okorafor
TOLEDO, OH - NOVEMBER 24: Western Michigan Broncos offensive lineman Chukwuma Okorafor (77) blocks during game action between the Western Michigan Broncos and the Toledo Rockets on November 24, 2017 at Glass Bowl Stadium in Toledo, Ohio. Toledo defeated Western Michigan 37-10 to advance to the MAC championship game. (Photo by Scott W. Grau/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Overview
Position
: Offensive tackle
Height: 6’6″
Weight: 320 pounds
School: Western Michigan Broncos

Combine Performance Data
40-yard dash
: 5.31 seconds
Bench press: 19 reps
Vertical jump: 23.5 inches
Broad jump: 8 feet, 6 inches
Three-cone drill: 7.87 seconds
20-yard shuttle: 4.80 seconds

Chukwuma Okorafor 2018 NFL Draft Profile

At some point during the 2018 NFL Draft, Chukwuma Okorafor will keep an impressive streak alive for the Western Michigan program. When he’s officially off the board, he’ll become the third straight former Bronco offensive linemen to have been drafted. Willie Beavers went in the fourth round of the 2016 draft to the Minnesota Vikings, while Taylor Moton was the final pick of the second round last year, going to the Carolina Panthers.

Okorafor was a highly sought-after tackle after impressing at Southfield High School in the Detroit, MI area. Six of his 12 scholarship offers came from Power Five schools, including Florida, Iowa, Ohio State and Oklahoma. But the three-star prospect rated the 12th best player in the state of Michigan by Rivals.com liked the sales pitch from then-Broncos head coach P.J. Fleck. He was the second player to commit to WMU as part of their 2014 class.

“Chukes,” as he’s affectionately referred to by his teammates, played in all 12 games as a true freshman but didn’t start any of them. That all changed the rest of the way as he then proceeded to make 39 straight starts for the Broncos over the next three seasons. His blocking exploits played a part in the program finishing second in the MAC in rushing offense during all three years. In 2016, which culminated in an undefeated regular season and Cotton Bowl appearance, WMU allowed just 16 sacks which ranked top 20 nationally. As a senior, Okorafor led the team by seeing action on 835 offensive plays and earned first-team All-MAC honors as well as first-team All-American notice from the FWAA and Phil Steele.

Strengths

  • quintessential build that looks the part of an NFL tackle;
  • above average arm length and wingspan to help him generate leverage;
  • keeps body well-mirrored to blocking target;
  • solid hand placement with good punch onto defender;
  • exceptional lateral footwork kick sliding to the perimeter;
  • plus initial quickness when jumping into the second level;
  • can shift weight and recover to regain the advantage;
  • played both tackle spots in college;
  • a three-year starter who saw extensive reps throughout his college career.

Weaknesses

  • plays a bit stiff and robotic at times;
  • might be in store for a steep learning curve in dealing with elite NFL speed;
  • twitchy edge rushers can shoot his inside gap;
  • sacrifices base leverage with lack of lower body bend;
  • susceptible to twists and counter moves;
  • footwork is a bit of an issue when pull/trap blocking;
  • bull rush can put him on his heels;
  • doesn’t seem comfortable in zone blocking schemes;
  • contact balance suffers when blocking in space;
  • needs to unleash his potential as a mauler more often.

NFL Comparison: Morgan Moses

Teams With Need at Position: Cincinnati Bengals, Denver Broncos, Indianapolis Colts, Los Angeles Chargers, New England Patriots, New York Jets, Oakland Raiders, Philadelphia Eagles

Projection: Third to fourth round

Bottom Line

When it comes to actual physical traits, few offensive line prospects in this year’s class are as impressive as Okorafor. His imposing stature, well-proportioned build, and long arms, by themselves, make him an ideal fit at that all-important left tackle position. But there are legitimate question marks as to whether he can handle the pass-rushing speed he’ll encounter at the next level. His instincts in pass protection will need to improve in that regard or else he may be limited to the right-hand side of the line. Still, there’s enough there to suggest he can develop into a regular NFL starter. For that reason, Okorafor should be off the board by the end of day two.

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