Josh Malone became the fifth Vol to be taken in the 2017 NFL Draft when he was selected by the Cincinnati Bengals with the 128th overall pick in the fourth round on Saturday.
The Bengals made Malone the fifth Tennessee player to be drafted in the 2017 NFL Draft, and he was the second Vol taken in the fourth round, joining linebacker Jalen Reeves-Maybin who was drafted by the Detroit Lions with the 124th overall pick.
Malone joins an already loaded wide receiver corps in Cincinnati. The Bengals have former first-round pick A.J. Green as their main weapon, and he’s complemented by Brandon LaFell and former 2016 draft picks Tyler Boyd and Cody Core. The Bengals also drafted Washington wide receiver John Ross in the first round of this year’s draft.
As a junior with the Vols, Malone had a breakout season with 972 yards and 11 touchdowns on 50 catches. Malone’s 972 yards last season were the ninth-most in a single season in Tennessee history, and his 11 touchdowns were tied for the third-most in school history. His 19.4 yards per catch were the most by a Vol with at least 50 receptions in a season.
Malone became the first Tennessee wide receiver to be drafted into the NFL since Cordarrelle Patterson and Justin Hunter were taken in the 2013 NFL Draft.