Ifeadi Odenigbo Heads Back to the AFC

Mar 4, 2017; Indianapolis, IN, USA; New York Giants defensive end Ifeadikachakwu Odenigbo. Mandatory Credit: Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports.

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March 4, 2017; Indianapolis, IN, USA; New York Giants defensive end Ifedikachkavu Odenigbo. Mandatory credit: Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports.

Training camp is just around the corner for most teams. new york jets And their new quarterback, ex-Vikings rival Aaron Rodgers, at the back of their training camp on Saturday. HBO’s cameras will follow them as they are officially the featured team on the show ‘Hard Knocks.’

Ifedi Odenigbo moves back to AFC

15 December 2019; Carson, CA, USA; Minnesota Vikings defensive end Ifedi Odenigbo (95) celebrates sacking Los Angeles Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers (left field) with teammate defensive end Danielle Hunter (99) in the third quarter at Dignity Health Sports Park. Mandatory credit: Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports.

Three former Vikings players were set to be a part of the show, but now a new player has joined the operation. Former Vikings starting defensive end Ifedi Odenigbo signed a contract Right in time with the Jets to attend training camp.

In the seventh round of the 2017 NFL Draft, general manager Rick Spielman added another edge rusher to the crowded group. The roster already included star rusher Everson Griffen, multi-year starter Bryan Robison, and rising superstar Danielle Hunter.

Born in New Jersey, Odenigbo is returning home. While Vikings fans know him as Ifadi, his full name is a bit more complicated. The son of Nigerian parents is named Ifedikachukwu Anthony Odenigbo. He was the first member of his family born in the United States.

In high school, his team achieved state championships, and he was awarded multiple Player of the Year honors. Apart from football, he was an exceptional athlete who ran and set records in the 200 and 400 meters. He went on to play football at Northwestern, where Odenigbo finished his collegiate career as the second best in the sack category with 23.5.

October 16, 2022; Indianapolis, Indiana, USA; Jacksonville Jaguars tight end Evan Engram (17) was tackled by Indianapolis Colts defensive end Ifedi Odenigbo (59) and linebacker Zaire Franklin (44) in the second half at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory credit: Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports.

The former college standout spent his rookie year in the NFL on the Vikings’ practice squad. After he was cut on final cut day in September 2018, the Browns claimed the former Vikings off waivers early and waived him only three weeks later, and the Cardinals claimed him. Odenigbo played in his first career game for them, but once again, he did not last long with the team.

By claiming him, the Vikings brought their former pass rusher back into the organization, and he again became part of the practice squad. In 2019, he made the 53-man roster and appeared in all 16 games. Odenigbo recorded an incredible seven sacks and also scored a touchdown after a short recovery.

Hunter missed the entire 2020 season, and the Griffons left in free agency, so were poised to regain the starting spot. Odenigbo started all 15 of their games that season but failed to reach the same level of play delivered in 2019.

October 30, 2022; Indianapolis, Indiana, USA; Washington Commanders’ quarterback Taylor Heinicke (4) runs the ball while Indianapolis Colts defensive end Yannick Ngakoue (91) and defensive end Ifedi Odenigbo (59) defend in the second half at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory credit: Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

Following the 2020 season, Odenigbo was once again a free agent. He immediately signed a contract with the New York Giants but was released at the end of training camp.

After spending two stints with the Vikings, the Browns selected him for a second time as well. Odenigbo played in nine games for the 2021 Cleveland Browns but failed to get a single sack, but recovered from a significant fumble in Week 14 against the division-rival Baltimore Ravens.

Last year, Odenigbo joined the Colts, where he recorded 3.5 sacks, but was released in December and spent a few weeks on the Buccaneers’ practice squad.

Odenigbo is 29 years old and looking to return to his 2019 form.

Janik Eckardt is a football fan who loves numbers and statistics. The Vikings became his favorite team at the time, despite quarterback Christian Ponder. He is a walking football encyclopedia, loves watching sitcoms and classic rock is his musical genre of choice. If you like Vikings, follow them on Twitter: @JanikEckardt

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