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Lions Go Corner in Round One, Select Jeff Okudah with Third Overall Pick

The Lions went with a bit of a surprise in the first round of the 2020 NFL Draft on Thursday night, as the team selected cornerback Jeff Okudah from Ohio State.

Michael Robinson of ESPN wrote about the “biggest question” when it comes to Okudah and what he brings to the table:

While he’s in a better position than most corners coming into the league, it will still be an adjustment. Without offseason workouts against wide receivers Kenny Golladay and Marvin Jones Jr., it could be a situation in which Okudah will be learning on the fly throughout portions of the season. Considering the receivers he might be asked to cover (Davante Adams in Green Bay and Adam Thielen in Minnesota) and the quarterbacks he probably will face (Tom Brady, Philip Rivers, Aaron Rodgers, Deshaun Watson and Drew Brees are all on the schedule), he could have some rough moments as he figures out the pro game.

Peter King reacts after the Lions used the third overall pick to draft cornerback Okudah out of Ohio State.

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3 Responses to “Lions Go Corner in Round One, Select Jeff Okudah with Third Overall Pick”

  1. Daniel Marino says:

    For want of a deal to keep Slay the Lions were FORCED to take a Okudah in the draft. That plus their inability to make a trade (and why would any team trade with Detroit as they the Lions had to take the corner.
    The Lions knew the depth of the draft long ago. Resigning Slay was a must. Other teams are able to, for the most part, to keep key players. Why not the Lions.
    Here’s what happened. By taking Okudah the Lions did not marginally improve their team. Had they managed to keep Slay the draft would have afforded them the ability to add a major talent to their team. This did not happen. If effect the Lions came out “even” instead of being plus ONE on the team talent. At best the Lions maintained and nothing more. The draft is needed to add talent…not maintain the talent level. I’m sure Okudah will be a fine player for the Lions. But he is not yet Slay nor did the Lions get to say that they were up one additional team talent by being able to draft someone like Simmons. The roster talent did not grow with the 3rd overall pick…and that’s a shame considering the talent that was available.
    Letting Slay go was a MAJOR loss and was not compensated for in the draft.

  2. Matthew Shishkoff says:

    Interesting take on Okudah. I think he will be a great fit for the Lions given his stats at Ohio State. According to this Detroit Lions Facts Page I found, Jeff Okudah forced 20 incompletions while only allowing 22 1st-downs in 2018-2019. It’s pretty obvious he’s going to have a great impact on the NFL with the Lions. I can’t wait to see what he does.

  3. George Miller says:

    As far as Slay, I think you make a good point Dan, but am thinking that the additional acquisition of Swift ( all other things being equal) could still result in a move up for the team . Under the circumstances, hard to know what anyone could have done better than Okudah. Whatever the case it seems like there will be a huge new mix of talent, and difficult to know how all that chemistry will gel at this point. Unfortunately, that seems to have become an mo for the LIONS every year.

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