KANSAS CITY, Mo. (WKRN) — Four former Volunteers heard their names called in Day 2 of the 2023 NFL Draft.
Quarterback Hendon Hooker was first off the board to the Lions at No. 68. Two of his offensive weapons would go in back-to-back picks. 2022 Biletnikoff Award winner Jalin Hyatt was drafted by the Giants 73rd overall, while Cedric Tillman went 74th to the Browns.
Hyatt led the Vols with 67 receptions, ranking fifth nationally with 1,267 receiving yards (18.9 per) and tying for second in the FBS with 15 touchdowns in 12 starts. The season before Tillman led the team in receiving (64-1,081-16.9, 12 TDs in 13 starts), becoming the first Tennessee receiver to exceed 1,000 yards since Justin Hunter (2013 second-round pick by Tennessee) in 2012. He would only play in six games last season with injuries.
Defensive end Byron Young is going to out west to the Los Angeles Rams at No. 77. Young didn’t play football for a year and a half after graduation — working as a manager at a Dollar General in Columbus, Georgia before trying out at Georgia Military College. He spent two seasons with the Vols, leading the team last season with 7 sacks, 37 tackles, 12 for loss. Young ran is a stellar 4.43 in the 40-yard dash at the NFL Combine.