Ezukanma, Deaton headed to AFC

Erik Ezukanma, WR

Drafted in Round 4 with pick 125 by the Miami Dolphins

Despite battling a suspected injury throughout the season, Ezukanma had his best campaign as a Red Raider last year. In 2021, Ezukanma totaled 705 receiving yards and four touchdowns. The Keller Timber Creek product showed its versatility through its usage out of the backfield, being used in Jet Sweep and handoffs. Ezukanma also totaled 138 rushing yards and two touchdowns in 2021.

In 2020, Ezukanma finished top-50 among all FBS players in receiving yards (31st), receiving touchdowns (47th) and receiving yards per game (49th).

In 34 career games at Texas Tech, Ezukanma caught 138 passes for 2165 yards and 15 touchdowns. He ended his Red Raider career as the team’s leading receiver for three straight seasons – the first Texas Tech receiver to do so since 1987. He’s also one of only 15 Texas Tech receivers since 2000 to have at least 2000 career receiving yards.

At 6-foot-3, Ezukanma’s frame will make him a consistent threat on the outside in the league. Ezukanma’s release also allows him to quickly create separation on the outside and make big plays downfield.

Dawson Deaton, C

Drafted in Round 7 with pick 246 by the Cleveland Browns

Deaton was an Iron Man of sorts for the Red Raiders throughout his career, making himself available any given Saturday. Deaton started in 35 games and played 2694 snaps in four seasons for the Red Raiders.

Pro Football Focus rated him as Texas Tech’s best offensive lineman last season, grading out at 72.6 in pass protection and 67.5 in rush protection. His 2021 campaign earned him All-Big 12 second-team status, marking the third time in his career that he was selected to an All-Big 12 team.

Deaton participated in the 2022 NFL scouting combine, where he logged a 5.12 40-yard dash time and 7.52 cone drill. Deaton has a unique build for a center, standing at 6-foot-6 and 310 pounds. His lengthy stature could make him a more effective base blocker at the NFL level. Deaton is noticeably athletic for his position, allowing him to identify and block delayed blitzes or moving linebackers.

Before his time at Texas Tech, Deaton starred at Frisco High School, helping power a rushing offense that averaged 333 yards per game during his senior season in 2016.

The road to becoming a starting center in the NFL is difficult, but Dawson’s rare frame and build will make him an important depth piece for the Browns.

Find more Texas Tech coverage from The Dallas Morning News here.

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