The Lions had a pretty good idea what they were getting when they used the No. 3 overall pick in this year's NFL Draft on Ohio State cornerback Jeff Okudah.
But after more than a month of meetings, his new coaches and teammates in Detroit say they might’ve got even more than they bargained for when it comes to the rookie’s appetite for learning.
“He’s driven like few men I’ve been around in this profession,” defensive coordinator Cory Undlin said Wednesday during a video conference call with reporters. “I know that and I can tell that, albeit on a Zoom call. The guy, he’s nonstop, to the point where it’s like, ‘Jeff, can we not talk about football for like five minutes? Do you do anything else? Like, what are we doing?’ That’s how he’s wired.”
Undlin laughed, because that’s actually one of the personality traits that sold the Lions on Okudah this winter as they weighed their options at the top of the draft. His performance as a lockdown corner at Ohio State made the consensus All-American an obvious fit for Detroit as Matt Patricia continued to overhaul his defense. But Okudah’s study habits and diligence off the field is what ultimately sold the Lions’ scouts and coaches.