Football

NFL Draft: UCLA WR Kyle Philips one of four Bruins selected on final day

09 May 2022 | 08:45

Kyle Philips received a call from the Tennessee Titans on Saturday and was immediately moved to tears. For the San Marcos native, who has led UCLA in receptions for the past three seasons, his moment in the NFL marked a dream come true.

Philips told reporters after enlisting: “I thought I would be able to hold back (the tears), but I couldn’t. “I’m just incredibly grateful.”

Philips, who was picked with a 163rd pick in the fifth round, was one of four Bruins who heard their name called Saturday. He went three points after handling Otito Ogbonnia, who was picked 160th by the Chargers overall. Defensive linebacker Quentin Lake also stayed in LA, placing 211th overall in the sixth round ahead of the Rams.

Re-running Brittain Brown didn’t go far either, with the Las Vegas Raiders picking him in the seventh round with a 250th pick.

They join tight finisher Greg Dulcich and offensive lead Sean Rhyan, who was drafted Friday, as six players from UCLA selected – the most of the show since 2016. This is just is the second time in two decades that there have been six or more Bruins. selected in the NFL draft.

Philips, who had 165 career admissions ranked fourth in program history, set a UCLA record in his freshman year with 60 admissions along with 681 admissions.

If Philips continues to play in Tennessee, he will catch passes from veteran quarterback Ryan Tannehill, who he calls “the ball-keeper”.

Philips said: “I am very happy to be with him, to work, to connect and to catch many passes from him.

Last season, Philips became the second team in the All-Pac-12 Conference and finished second in the Pac-12 in yards per game at 67.2 while amassing 739 yards in their career and 12.5 yards per session.

The Philips, labeled as one of the “sleepy” wide receivers in the NFL Network draft, comes in slightly smaller sizes at 5 foot-11 and 189 pounds. He has a knack for working in the open space in the trenches with his quickness and good clearance. He averaged 8.0 yards after catching last season, ranking seventh in the Pac-12 among receivers with a minimum of 50 goals.

Philips’ ability to retaliate could also get him on the Titans roster. He averaged over 19 yards per return with two touchdowns in college.

Philips told reporters that he takes pride in his work ethic and that he’s willing to contribute even though the Titans might employ him.

“I’m happy to go in there and do everything I can and just earn a spot anywhere on the pitch, whether it’s special teams, in a cover team or fouls,” Philips said. “Whatever it is, I just want to help the team win some games.”

Philips hasn’t been to Nashville yet, but it’s his girlfriend’s favorite because she loves country music.

“Before this whole process, she said, ‘Let’s work with TItans. “I said, ‘Look, I’m not in control of this whole thing,’ so it’s funny how this whole thing turned out.”

Philips added: “I am so happy to be out there, experiencing and loving the city myself.”

Ogbonnia started all 12 games last season, scoring 30 career-best tackles and with that two eliminations and becoming Pro Football Focus’s second team All-Pac-12. He continued his season with a strong performance at the Senior Bowl.

He also competed in the shot for UCLA’s track and field team in his first season, and the explosiveness is evident in the sports.

Ogbonnia, a Houston native, told reporters he has a good feeling about the power bank for him after a fruitful visit.

“I showed it off in a way I almost didn’t realize myself, but it happened in the end and I am forever grateful for it,” Ogbonnia said.

Lake, who hails from Irvine, will be at home with the defending Super Bowl champion Rams. The defensive back started safely in 11 games last season, as he led the team in defensive passes and tied for the lead with three interceptions.

He will be the second-generation Lake to make the NFL. His father, Carnell Lake, also played for UCLA and became the NFL’s All-Decade Team of the 1990s as a quarterback.