Nakobe Dean 2022 NFL Draft Profile
The Georgia Bulldogs are going to dominate the 2022 NFL Draft from a defensive perspective. This Bulldogs team that won the National Championship could have 4 defensive players drafted in the first round, and one who is mocked in the latter part of the first round is Nakobe Dean. Dean played a pivotal role in the Bulldogs’ success this past season and looks to cash in on that in the Draft. Here is our 2022 NFL Draft Profile on Nakobe Dean.
Dean did not participate at the NFL Combine this year and was a limited participant at the Georgia Pro Day. Here is our link to our full Linebacker notes from the combine.
What he did on the field is what sells teams about Nakobe Dean. Dean made an impact as a true freshman, after being a top-15 recruit in the nation, taking home the team’s Co-Defensive Newcomer of the year. He is a former Butkus Award winner in both college and high school only becoming the third player to do so after Manti Te’o and Jaylon Smith. 6 sacks a season ago along with 72 total tackles in a loaded defense is nothing to sneeze at.
I like Dean a lot. He is a sideline to sideline type of Linebacker with great explosion and downhill acceleration. His build and play style reminds me a lot of Roquan Smith. Dean is always the first guy to enter a gap and meet the running back. A willing and quality tackler. He possesses good-to-great coverage of running backs out of the backfield thanks to his quickness. His 6 sacks this season were a major breakout, after only having 1.5 the season before and none his freshman year. His timing took a major jump this season.
His size, 5’11 and 229 lbs, is not ideal for an MLB but with how the league is trending anymore this won’t be a major issue. His play recognition also could use a little work, as at times he appeared lost if he had to handle multiple reads before deciding who to cover or an area to cover.
Nakobe Dean has first-round talent, that is not a question. I believe that the back half of the first round in this year’s NFL Draft is kind of hard to predict, so I think there could be a chance that he falls into the early part of the second round. While I don’t think he is LB1 in this year’s class, he has all the makings of a bonafide stud and can make an impact right out of the gate.
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