The NFL invited former Georgia linebacker Nakobe Dean to the 2022 NFL draft with the idea that he would go off the board in the first round. So it was surprising to everyone — including Dean — that he lasted until the third round, where the Eagles selected him.
Reports surfaced that pectoral and knee injuries caused his draft stock to slide, but Dean says those injuries were minor and that he will be a full participant at the Eagles’ rookie minicamp.
“I’m healthy,” Dean said. “I’m ready to go. I know minicamp is next week and I expect to be a full participant for that. Why I dropped? It’s not in my control. Nothing I can do. Nothing I could do to make them pick me earlier. I’m grateful and blessed I have this opportunity.”
Dean said he was shocked to hear people suggest he wouldn’t play as a rookie because of pectoral injury that would need surgery.
“Things that were not true cost me a lot of money,” Dean said. “That was the thing that was so surprising and mind-boggling. It was never, I went to doctors, got second opinions and everything, and nobody — nobody — said I should have surgery. Nobody had told me I had to have surgery. So, for that to come up and for teams to be saying that and waiting until the day of the draft to say something like that, that was kind of crazy to me.”
Nakobe is grateful the Eagles took him.
“I feel like I got picked by a great organization,” Dean said. “I’m just ready to work.”