Jeff Okudah is fully recovered from the torn Achilles that he suffered in the Detroit Lions' first game of the 2021 season and he is ready to go out and prove that he was deserving of being the No. 3 overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft.
In fact, according to Lions head coach Dan Campbell, 'nobody wants it more' than Okudah.
"Nobody wants it more than he does," Campbell said. "I mean he’s put in the work, he looks healthy, and I think at this point all you can do now is go to work and show what you’ve got and see if you can continue to progress. Because look, ultimately, that’s the thing here is he just hadn’t got a ton of football in him because of the injury."
Detroit Lions CB Jeff Okudah has a 'lot at stake' in 2022
There is no question about it that Jeff Okudah is motivated to have a big season for the Detroit Lions, but what if he doesn't?
During a recent article about people with the 'most at stake' in 2022, Bill Barnwell suggests that though it is still too early to give up on Okudah, that there are questions about whether or not the Lions would pick up his fifth-year option if he struggles.
Okudah, arguably the most disappointing pick from the 2020 draft, struggled mightily in his first season with the Lions before tearing his left Achilles tendon in Week 1 last year. The coach and general manager who drafted Okudah are no longer in the organization, and the former No. 3 overall pick will have to compete with Will Harris, Mike Hughes and Jerry Jacobs for the starting job at corner.
It's still too early to give up on Okudah, but there are questions about whether the Lions would pick up his fifth-year option if the 23-year-old struggles. We've seen teams decline the options for players chosen second (Mitch Trubisky), third (Solomon Thomas) and fourth (Clelin Ferrell) overall in recent years; Okudah needs to turn around things to avoid being the next player on an ignominious list.
Nation, do you think Jeff Okudah can have a 2022 season that will make everyone forget about what has happened since he was drafted?