The first two days of the 2022 NFL Draft were quiet for Virginia Tech, but a flurry of Hokies were selected on the third and final day. A total of four Tech players were selected by NFL teams, all in the fifth and sixth rounds.
Though his senior season was marred by a torn ACL, tight end James Mitchell was the first Virginia Tech player off the board. He was selected in the fifth round by the Detroit Lions with the No. 177 overall selection.
Mitchell had 52 catches for 838 yards and seven receiving touchdowns during his injury-shortened career. He also had five rushing touchdowns on his seven career carries, and was even pressed into punt return duties for a short time in 2020.
Defensive end Amaro Barno was the next Hokie to be taken. The Carolina Panthers selected him in the sixth round with the No. 189 overall pick. Barno had a dominant 2020 season, recording 16 tackles for loss and 6.5 sacks. However, his numbers dipped in 2021 as he had only 5.5 tackles for loss and 3.5 sacks.
Offensive tackle Luke Tenuta also went in the sixth round with the No. 209 overall selection. He was picked by the Buffalo Bills, where he’ll join former Virginia Tech players Tremaine Edmunds and Tim Settle. Tenuta started 26 games during his career in Blacksburg, and he was named Third Team All-ACC in 2021 by PFF and Eric Mac Lain.
Fellow offensive lineman Lecitus Smith followed shortly after Tenuta. He’ll head out west, being drafted by the Arizona Cardinals in the sixth round with the No. 215 overall selection. He will play offensive guard for the Cardinals. Smith started 37 games during his Virginia Tech career, and was named to numerous All-ACC teams following the 2020 season.