When the Detroit Lions selected CB Jeff Okudah out of Ohio State with the No. 3 overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft, the hope was that he would come into the NFL and establish himself as a lockdown defensive back.
Unfortunately, that has not happened as the youngster had had injury issues, including tearing his Achilles in the first game of the 2021 season.
Now, Okudah is fully recovered from his Achilles injury 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.
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.”
Jeff Okudah already ‘dominating’ at Detroit Lions’ training camp
Many, including myself, are calling this a ‘make-or-break’ season for Jeff Okudah as the Detroit Lions could decide to pass on his fifth-year option if he does not perform well during the upcoming season.
Well, according to Jeff Risdon of Detroit Lions Wire, Okudah is already dominating everything he can control at training camp.
From Jeff Risdon:
Take Thursday’s practice. In one period of a drill, Okudah:
- Rode wideout Quintez Cephus out of bounds with a jam without doing anything illegal
- Ran step for step with WR Josh Reynolds on a deep route in perfect stride
- Correctly anticipated a comeback route by Cephus and jumped it, forcing QB Jared Goff to double-clutch and throw elsewhere
There was more strong play in Friday’s session. He got beat once in the red zone drill, losing DJ Chark in traffic across the middle. That was about the only blemish on Okudah’s day. He’s been both anticipatory and quick to react, showing closing burst and confidence in his eyes–the two things (aside from health) that he struggled with the most in his first two NFL years.
Nation, what are your expectations for Jeff Okudah during the upcoming season? Will he prove to the Detroit Lions that he is worthy of a fifth-year option?