The Tampa Bay Buccaneers were down one offensive tackle in training camp after rookie Calvin Ashley left the squad and was subsequently released on Thursday. They rectified that situation before they even had to take the field again.
On Thursday, which was the first day of rest for the players in camp, the Buccaneers signed first-year tackle Chidi Okeke, who was most recently on the Miami Dolphins' practice squad in 2019. The team will resume practicing on Friday morning, with Okeke now in the mix.
Okeke (6-5, 317) played his college ball at Tennessee State and originally entered the NFL as an undrafted free agent with Washington in 2019. He spent just one month with Washington but then went to training camp with the Kansas City Chiefs. After being waived in the cutdown to 53, Okeke signed to Miami's practice squad a week later. He stayed on that unit for the entire season and was then re-signed by the Dolphins for 2020 but was later waived in March. He did not play in the NFL last season.
Okeke started at left tackle for two seasons (2017-18) at Tennessee state and was part of a passing attack that ranked 20th in the nation. He started every game as a redshirt junior in 2018 and was named to the All-Ohio Valley Conference first team. He started his college career at LSU but transferred after one redshirt season and one campaign playing on special teams. A native of Nigeria, Okeke only played two years of high school football after moving to Illinois.