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Is this the season for Carolina to get themselves back in the hunt?
  1. NFL

NFL - US Sports: No surprise for Ekwonu if he becomes top pick

North Carolina State offensive lineman Ikem Ekwonu wouldn't be shocked if he was taken first overall in the 2022 draft, although he admits he would be happy to head to New York if the Jacksonville Jaguars pass on him.

Ekwonu, 5/1 to be the first prospect off the board in Nevada next month, has been rising up the ranks in some of the most respected mock drafts with some analysts believing the sophomore could be better than Alabama's 5/6 Evan Neal - the other offensive tackle projected to go early on day one.

Neal isn't working out at this week's NFL Combine in Indianapolis, which has handed the spotlight over to Ekwonu to dazzle the scouts - and the media as his engaging personality enthralled those at his press conference on Thursday.

"I wouldn't be shocked if I went No. 1 overall, Ekwonu said, via New York Post. "I feel like that's something that I've put the work in for and I feel like when that time comes, I would deserve it."

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Both New York teams would be ready to pounce if Ekwonu slipped outside the top three with the Jets slated to make him their first of two top ten picks at number four and the Giants sat fifth in the current draft order.

"That would be great," Ekwonu said of potentially heading to the Big Apple.

"I have family in New York and New Jersey, so it would be nice to be able to spend some time with them and be close to them. I've been in New York City a couple of times. I've been in New Jersey a couple of times, a beautiful area. It would definitely be a nice change of scenery."

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