Nakobe Dean of Eagles talks about falling into the third round: ‘It’s definitely something that will stay with me’

Nakobe Dean was a first-round talent who had an awkward slip into the third round of the NFL Draft, before the Philadelphia Eagles managed to pick him up and highlight Georgia as an integral part of their defense. Philadelphia is excited to get Dean in the third round, but the linebacker will be motivated by that drop throughout his NFL career.

“It’s definitely something that will stay with me,” Dean said at Eagles ’rookie mini camp on Friday. “It’s not my primary or secondary source of motivation, but it’s definitely something that will stay with me throughout my playing career.”

Dean’s accreditations did not deserve a choice in the third round. He was the only player in the state with five bags (finished with six bags), two forced interceptions and two interceptions in 2021. Georgia allowed just 10.2 points per game (regular season and playoffs), which was the fifth best defense since 2000 – and Dean was the leader of that unit.

Why did Dean fall? Dean was facing reports of a chest and knee injury that caused his stock to slip, which was news to him since he was a full participant in the Eagles rookie minicamp this weekend. Dean is not expected to miss any moment, which is a win for the Eagles.

“I feel like he’s in the ball all the time, whether we’re in a meeting or on the field, it’s locked,” Eagles head coach Nick Sirianni said on Friday. “You definitely felt it from him, and we knew it about him even before we drafted him. He definitely showed it today, and he showed it yesterday in our meetings.”

Dean, who will wear No. 17 for the Eagles, is already taking command of the defense and showing off those leadership skills he had in Georgia. First round picking Jordan Davis was Dean’s teammate in Georgia, knowing what he brings to the table as a defense commander – as Davis called him when they were with the Bulldogs.

“When you have someone like Nakobe who runs a show and calls a show, you have him behind you, you trust him 100%,” Davis said. “If I mess up, he’ll clean it up. If he messes up, he knows I’ll clean it up.”

Dean’s career will be intriguing because of his fall into the third round. A few great seasons will list many general managers who will wonder why they skipped it at all.

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