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Stetson Bennett looked good, but not great during his NFL debut. The two-time national champion out of Georgia went 17 of 29 for 191 yards and a touchdown without an interception during a 17-point loss to the Chargers.
He was also sacked three times for a loss of 36 yards. That isn’t necessarily Bennett’s fault, but it lands on his stat line anyway.
One of the three sacks came at the mercy of someone who had never played before. Literally.
Basil Chijioke Okoye, who goes by C.J., has one of the coolest stories in the NFL this year. It got even cooler Saturday.
Okoye is a Nigerian athlete who signed with the Chargers earlier in the offseason. The 21-year-old started playing football three years ago and found his way to Los Angeles by way of the International Player Pathway. Osi Umenyiora played a big role in getting Okoye discovered.
Although he has been training for the sport since 2020, the 6-foot-6, 315-pound 21-year-old had never played in an organized game. Okoye had zero in-game experience prior to his debut against the Rams.
For him to be on the field at all was impressive. What happened next was even more so.
Okoye sacked Bennett during the fourth quarter. He recorded a sack in his first-ever football game!
As could be expected, the Chargers’ sideline went absolutely bonkers in celebration.
Head coach Brandon Staley was equally as proud of Okoye after the game.
It’s a historic performance. This guy, as you guys know, his story is remarkable.
The international pathway program, this guys never played in a game. For him in his first NFL game to have a sack… that’s what the NFL’s about!— Brandon Staley
Bennett probably didn’t love getting sacked three times. But at least one of them made for a great story!