The safety was a highly touted prospect coming out of UConn, and the Raiders ended up using a second-round pick (No. 56) to select the defensive back in 2017. Two stints on the IR limited Melifonwu to only five games during his rookie season, and he was ultimately released by the Raiders midway through his sophomore campaign. He appeared in a pair of games for the Patriots during the second half of that 2018 season, and he ended up spending much of the next year on New England’s practice squad.
Melifonwu was released last April, but he didn’t end up getting another gig during the 2020 season. He signed a futures contract with the 49ers back in January, but he was waived less than four months later.
In total, the 27-year-old has seen time in seven career games, having compiled 10 tackles. Melifonwu turned heads with his speed (4.4-second 40-yard dash time) and athleticism (44-inch vertical), so it isn’t a surprise that the Jets are kicking the tires on a safety with that skill set.
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.