Jeff Okudah had surgery on both sides of his core as a precaution, healthy for Lions camp, per report
The Detroit Lions made quite the investment in Jeff Okudah when they made the corner the No. 3 overall pick back at the 2020 NFL Draft. To this point, the franchise has only seen a glimpse of what that lofty investment will be on the field as the corner was limited to just nine games during his rookie season. Okudah first missed the opener due to a hamstring injury and then was sidelined for the remainder of the season in December due to a core muscle injury.
While Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network reports that Okudah is now healthy for Lions camp, he also noted a few more interesting details into his surgery. Last year, Okudah tore a core muscle on one side, which ended his rookie season prematurely. On top of repairing that injury, Rapoport adds that the young corner also had surgery to repair the other side as well. The reason to repair the non-injured side is said to be for precautionary reasons as oftentimes if you tear one the other soon follows.
Again, this won’t impact Okudah’s readiness for when the Lions open up training camp but is noteworthy as he tries to curb any potential threats of a similar injury bringing him down for the second year in a row.
In his nine games (six starts) played in 2020, Okudah totaled 47 tackles, one interception, and two pass breakups. When targeted opposing quarterbacks were completing just over 77% of their passes and boasted a passer rating of 118. He naturally needs to improve upon those totals as he steps into Year 2 to ensure the Lions are getting a proper return on their massive investment just a few drafts ago.
With this core muscle injury behind him and Okudah doing his best to negate any further injuries of similar nature, he’ll look to be a more consistent presence within Detroit’s secondary in 2021.