Former Syracuse Orange wide receiver Amba Etta-Tawo has signed with the Jacksonville Jaguars as an undrafted free agent.
The Houston Chronicle’s Aaron Wilson first reported the news.
Etta-Tawo surprisingly wasn’t selected Saturday, after being projected to be taken as early as the fourth round in one mock draft, but he quickly signed with the Jaguars after the 2017 NFL Draft concluded.
The move shouldn’t come as too much of a surprise as new Jaguars executive VP Tom Coughlin always had a penchant for drafting/signing players from his alma matter while with the Giants.
As a graduate transfer from Maryland, Etta-Tawo flourished in his lone season at Syracuse, setting the Orange single-season records for receptions (94), receiving yards (1,482) and receiving yards per game (123.5). Etta-Tawo was also one 10 Biletnikoff Award semifinalists, which is given to the nation’s most outstanding receiver.
Despite his remarkable stats and measurables, the 6-foot-2, 202-pound receiver remained an enigma for scouts and NFL front offices, as a number of concerns still lingered regarding his breakout season, including: dropped passes, the poor production at Maryland (not really his fault), limited route runner, raw talent and questions of how much Syracuse coach Dino Babers’ system played into his production.
Those concerns ultimately outweighed Etta-Tawo’s incredible 2016 season and resulted in the former Orange receiver going undrafted. The Jaguars, however, saw enough in Etta-Tawo to sign him as an undrafted free agent, a high-reward signing that comes with relatively no risk and could pay dividends if Etta-Tawo is able to replicate just 1⁄4 of the production he had at Syracuse.
Former Syracuse wide receiver Brisly Estime also quickly found a home after going undrafted, signing with the New York Jets.