The Philadelphia Eagles added some juice to their linebacking corps with the selection of Nakobe Dean, the 83rd overall pick in the 2022 NFL Draft. The Georgia standout brings speed and versatility despite his slight stature. It was a surprising fall for the prospect, who NFL Network’s Daniel Jeremiah had rated as the 17th best prospect on his big board.
Per source, Georgia LB Nakobe Dean declined surgery on his shoulder, and it's now a major concern/medical red flag.— Austin Gayle (@PFF_AustinGayle) April 30, 2022
A Butkus Award winner, Dean became a central figure on Georgia’s smothering defense by his sophomore season. His top-shelf athleticism made him an every-down linebacker for the Bulldogs. His range allows him to hold his own in pass coverage while his tenacity makes him a factor in the run game. In the right defensive system, he can have a standout NFL career.
Still, his size limitations could prove to be more of an issue at the next level. He stands shorter than 6-foot and has arms less than 32-inches long. Even when he diagnoses a play correctly, NFL receivers could still beat him to the ball. Similarly, at just 229 pounds, Dean could get lost in the wash trying to fit the run if not protected by his defensive front.
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