Chicago Bears trade back into 2024 NFL Draft to take this Kansas Jayhawks pass rusher

Austin Booker has officially fulfilled a childhood dream.

And he wasn’t just drafted in the fifth round: A team traded back into the NFL Draft to pick him at No. 144.

The Kansas defensive end was selected by the Chicago Bears in the 2024 draft on Saturday afternoon. Booker became the second Jayhawk selected in the event, following KU offensive lineman Dominick Puni, who was chosen by the San Francisco 49ers in the third round on Friday.

Booker is the fifth Jayhawk drafted since 2018.

Booker, a redshirt sophomore in 2023 from Greenwood, Indiana, was a first-team All-Big 12 selection last season. He was named Big 12 defensive newcomer of the year. At 6 foot 4 1/2 inches and 240 pounds, he will likely be an edge rusher for the Bears and is projected as an “eventual plus starter,” according to Lance Zierlein of

Booker joined Kansas before the 2023 season after two years at Minnesota. He played in six games in 2022, finishing with two tackles and one tackle-for-loss.

In his lone season at Kansas, Booker broke out while appearing in 12 games. He ended the season with 56 total tackles, including a team-high 12 for loss and a team-best eight sacks.

Booker opted out of the Jayhawks’ bowl game, ending his season early. After the season, he participated in the 2024 NFL Scouting Combine.