Unfortunately, Okudah suffered an Achilles injury in the Lions' first game in 2021, causing him to miss the remainder of the season.
Now, Okudah is fully recovered from his injury and if he is able to get back to how he played in college at Ohio State, he is going to be a big addition to a Lions' defense that was horrendous a year ago.
“I think I’ve grown a lot, especially coming out of college,” Okudah said after wrapping up Day 1 of training camp on Wednesday. “I was probably a little more naïve than I thought at the time, looking back. Just being able to go through some of the tough things that other guys go through, it’s definitely made me mature, mature a lot. Personally, I’ve gone through things off the field, but to go through some things on the field, it’s been able to grow me as a whole person.
“I think the things I went through off the field, prepared me for things that I’ll go through on the field.”
Jeff Okudah believes the ‘sky's the limit' for Detroit Lions' defense
Detroit Lions head coach Dan Campbell had nothing but good things to say about Okudah prior to Wednesday's practice.
“He’s good to go,” head coach Dan Campbell said. “Listen, tell you what, he’s committed. He’s in a good place right now. We’re going to give him some reps out there today. I just think, man, if he looks good today, he’ll get more tomorrow. And if he looks good then, Day 3 he’ll get (more). We’re not putting any restrictions on him. He’s been good.
“As a matter of fact, we brought him in early just because of the injury. He was with the rookies on the report date. You get the injured vets, the rookies, the quarterbacks come in three days early. I don’t require those guys to be in football meetings or anything of that nature. He wanted to be around. That’s a good sign. He wants as much knowledge as he can get. As much help as he can get. He’s committed. He’s good to go. Look, he knows (the expectations). No one wants it more than he does. I mean, he’s put in the work. He’s healthy, and I think at this point, all you can do now is go to work and show what you’ve got.”
As far as the Detroit Lions defense goes in 2022, Jeff Okudah believes the “sky's the limit.”
“I think the sky’s the limit,” Okudah said. “I just think we have to go out there and get it. It’s not going to be something that’s handed to us. I think we have to have the mentality that we’re all underdogs in a way. I think everyone can attest to that. So just having that mentality and not taking anything for granted, and just having that mentality that we have to take, because it’s not going to be given.”