Where will NC State’s Ikem Ekwonu, UNC’s Sam Howell be drafted? Here’s an early look

·2 min read

Ikem Ekwonu could become N.C. State’s first No. 1 pick in the NFL Draft since 2006.

That year, defensive end Mario Williams went first overall to the Houston Texans. At least one publication that thinks Ekwonu could be the first name off the board in April’s draft.

If Ekwonu doesn’t go first, he won’t sit in the green room for long. The consensus All-American left tackle is predicted to go anywhere from pick No. 1 to No. 7.

Ekwonu (6-foot-4, 320 pounds) isn’t the only Triangle player expected to go on Day 1; UNC quarterback Sam Howell could go late in the first round.

Ekwonu and Howell (6-1, 220) both left school early to pursue their NFL dreams.

Ekwonu started every game this season at left tackle. The Charlotte native was a consensus first-team All-American, the first for N.C. State since defensive end Bradley Chubb in 2017, and the third consensus All-American in school history. Ekwonu led the team with 67 pancake blocks and 18 knockdowns. He allowed just two sacks in 829 snaps.

He started seven games as a true freshman in 2019 and never looked back. Over the past two years, he has started 24 games, playing both guard and tackle in 2020.

Howell started all three seasons at UNC and left Chapel Hill as the school’s record holder in career yards passing (10,283) and total offense (11,292).

WHERE EKWONU AND HOWELL COULD GET DRAFTED

CBS SPORTS





Round 1, Pick 3

Houston Texas

Ikem Ekwonu







THE ATHLETIC





Round 1, Pick 1

Jacksonville Jaguars

Ikem Ekwonu

Round 1, Pick 20

Pittsburgh Steelers

Sam Howell







ESPN





Round 1, Pick 5

New York Giants

Ikem Ekwonu

Round 1, Pick 28

Detroit Lions

Sam Howell







Pro Football Focus





Round 1, Pick 4

New York Jets

Ikem Ekwonu

Round 1, Pick 20

Pittsburgh Steelers

Sam Howell







NFL.com





Round 1, Pick 5

New York Giants

Ikem Ekwonu







Sporting News





Round 1, Pick 7

New York Giants (from Chicago)

Ikem Ekwonu

Round 1, Pick 31

New York Giants (from Rams)

Sam Howell

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