CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – Virginia tight end Jelani Woods was chosen by the Indianapolis Colts during the third round of the 2022 National Football League Draft. He was the 73rd overall player selected in the draft. Woods is the first Cavalier tight end selected in a draft since John Phillips was picked by the Dallas Cowboys in 2009.
A first-team All-ACC pick in 2021, Woods caught 44 passes in 11 games for 598 yards. He averaged 13.6 yards per catch and had eight receptions go for scores. The eight touchdowns are second most in a season in school history, trailing only Heath Miller (nine) from 2002. His eight scores were the most by an ACC tight end and the fourth most in the country. Woods’ 598 yards led all ACC tight ends and is the third most by a tight end in program history.
“Jelani’s unique — I’m not gonna lie to you,” Colts general manager said of Woods on Friday night after his selection. “I think he’s got really big upside, both as a receiving tight end and as a blocker. We think he’s going to be able to block … he’s a unique athlete, and he’s a guy that’s always open.”
Woods transferred to UVA from Oklahoma State where appeared in 34 games with 28 career starts. With the Cowboys, he had 31 career receptions for 361 yards and four touchdowns.
“With me, I’m more of a physical guy,” Woods told the Colts media during the draft. “Definitely would say a guy that attacks everything he does. Run blocking, I’m definitely very aggressive. I love contact, so I’m kind of into that. Running routes, I’m very physical at the point of attack, making breaks and I like to bang a lot. I would say I’m a versatile player that likes to do both pretty much, blocking and running routes.”
Free Agent Signings
Several Cavaliers signed free agent contracts with NFL teams following this year’s draft. Safety Joey Blount agreed to terms with the Seattle Seahawks while wide receiver Ra’Shaun Henry is headed to the Carolina Panthers.