With the 83rd overall pick in the 2022 NFL Draft, the Eagles selected Georgia linebacker Nakobe Dean. After snagging defensive tackle Jordan Davis on Thursday, the Eagles went back to the historic Bulldogs defense for their third-round selection.
"As far as me being with the Eagles, I feel like we can do great things together," Dean said during a video teleconference with reporters. "Great things as a whole organization, me as an individual and us as a team and as a defense. I always have big goals for myself, have big goals for my team, so I feel like we can do great things, as far as being one of the best defense to ever come through football ever."
Here are five things to know about the Eagles' newest defensive player:
1. The 6-foot, 225-pound linebacker recorded 168 tackles over three seasons at Georgia, adding three forced fumbles, 7.5 sacks, and two interceptions. He was a captain for the record-setting Bulldogs defense in 2021, finishing as a unanimous All-American and winning the Butkus Award as the nation's best linebacker. He started all 15 games for the National Champions and suited up for all 39 games of his college career.
2. A leader for the Georgia defense, Dean was a starter during his sophomore and junior seasons before opting to forgo his senior year and enter the NFL Draft. He led the Bulldogs in tackles in 2020 as the middle linebacker in Georgia's 3-4 base scheme. In the Bulldogs' national semifinal win over Michigan in the Orange Bowl, Dean racked up a team-high five solo tackles including two tackles for a loss and a sack.
"I'm not the biggest rah-rah guy. I'm going to say what's on my mind or whatever gets the job done," Dean said. "At the end of the day, I feel like the only thing that matters is winning games. It's the only thing that matters. I feel whatever we got to do to win games is what I'm for."
3. The 21-year-old is a native of Horn Lake, Mississippi, located 20 miles outside of Memphis. He was a five-star recruit out of Horn Lake High School, ranked as the No. 2 linebacker in the country and the No. 1 player in the state of Mississippi out of the 2019 class. He received offers from every single SEC school.
4. Dean started all four years of high school and led Horn Lake to a 15-0 record and Class 6A state title as a senior. It was the first state title in the school's history. After recording 147 tackles as a junior, Dean finished his senior season with 175 tackles, 26 for loss, while picking up seven sacks, three interceptions, and two forced fumbles. He won the high school classification of the Butkus Award in 2018.
5. Dean comes from an athletic household, one of three children raised by his mother, Neketta. His older brother, Nikolas, played a season at Ole Miss as a tight end in 2018. A multi-sport athlete, Nakobe also played baseball, basketball, and track at Horn Lake. He played on both sides of the ball in high school, scoring nine touchdowns as a running back. He was named the Mississippi's Mr. Football and Gatorade Player of the Year in 2018.
"We are looking for high character guys. We are looking for guys that love football. We are looking for guys that are tough. We are looking for guys that have high football IQ. And (we are looking for guys that are) competitive, that's the last one. He checks every one of those boxes. He's a leader on the field for Georgia. His football IQ is so high. His instincts are so high." – Head Coach Nick Sirianni