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Lions S coach Brian Duker comments on Jeff Okudah’s friendly fire

This past Sunday the Detroit Lions defeated the Green Bay Packers for their second win of the season. On the day, the Lions’ defense only allowed nine points to the Aaron Rodgers-led Packers. The defense played well enough to get the victory, carried by Kerby Joseph’s breakout performance, which earned him Defensive Player of the Week honors. Yet, he did this in only three-quarters due to being knocked out of the game by Jeff Okudah’s friendly fire. This led Lions’ safeties coach, Brian Duker, to make some very interesting comments on Okudah’s play.

Jeff Okudah Aaron Glenn Detroit Lions

Jeff Okudah’s friendly fire is okay with Brian Duker

In meeting with the press on Wednesday afternoon, Duker spoke to the idea of Okudah’s friendly fire and the need to maybe tone it down a bit. According to Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press,

Lions S coach Brian Duker on Jeff Okudah’s friendly fire (knocked out two teammates Sunday; though Okwara came back): ‘Friendly fire’s going to happen on defense. We’re not taking the dial back on that one.

via Dave Birkett on Twitter.

Duker seems to love the aggressive play from his third-year defensive back. Okduah is having a nice season, bouncing back from an Achilles injury last season. When you look at Jeff Okudah’s friendly fire incidents, compared with his Pro Football Focus grades, you can see the aggressiveness on display.

Okudah grades out as a better tackler than he does as a cover guy. On the season, from the cornerback position, Okduah has 44 tackles, including a forced fumble; compared to the fact that he’s giving up receptions on 73.7% of targets thrown his way.

There is definitely no reason to have Okudah tone down his aggressiveness is not the answer to the friendly fire question. Especially on a defense that is toward the bottom in effectiveness in the league. Injuries are a part of the game, and Brian Duker knows this. The hope is that Kerby Joseph will be cleared through the concussion protocol and be ready to go this week, and at the same time, Jeff Okudah will continue to fly around the field and make plays.

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Teddy Jackson
Teddy Jackson
Writer for the best sports city in the world. General optimist with an analytical eye. “It has long been an axiom of mine that the little things are infinitely the most important.” -Sherlock Holmes

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