DETROIT, Mich. — Detroit Lions cornerback Jeff Okudah ruptured an Achilles tendon and is out for the season.
Okudah limped off the field slowly before being carted to the locker room, with the Lions trailing big to the San Francisco 49ers early in the fourth quarter at Ford Field on Sunday.
The 2020 No. 3 overall pick was then ruled out of action with a foot injury, but an MRI on Monday confirmed the severity of it.
Team doctors hinted to coach Dan Campbell following Detroit’s 41-33 loss that it could be an Achilles injury.
Okudah was credited with four tackles and a pass defended, but was spotted on the sideline getting an earful from defensive backs coach Aubrey Pleasant, who challenged him to play better in the first game of his second season.
“I would say for Jeff, it was an up-and-down game,” Campbell said. “He flashes on a few plays, you’re like, ‘Wow. OK, there he is.’ And then next thing you know, something happens that’s just — I don’t want to make excuses, but at the same time, he’s in Year 2. He made some young errors is what he did.”
The injury is a huge blow to Detroit’s secondary as Okudah was coming off a strong training camp. During the offseason, he completely reinvented himself and developed a tight bond with Pleasant and the new regime, which was looking to get the best out of him.
Okudah’s rookie season was also cut short, as he appeared in nine games (starting six) before undergoing season-ending surgery on his groin.
“I’ve been through a lot of adverse things, and something about me is that I really don’t regret any of it because it’s led me to where I’m at right now,” Okudah told ESPN last week. “So, I’ve been really appreciative that every time that I’ve fallen, I’ve been able to get back up.”