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Colts Bobby Okereke was PFF’s Highest Graded Rookie Linebacker in 2019

Oakland Raiders v Indianapolis Colts Photo by Justin Casterline/Getty Images

According to Pro Football Focus, Indianapolis Colts linebacker Bobby Okereke was their highest graded rookie linebacker this past season:

The following linebackers were taken ahead of Okereke at 89th overall in 2019: Devin White, Devin Bush, Jahlani Tavai, Germaine Pratt, Sione Takitaki, and Cody Barton.

The Colts 2019 3rd round pick out of Stanford recorded 55 tackles (38 solo), a sack, and two passes defensed in 16 games (8 starts) this past season.

With a +77.3 grade overall, Okereke was PFF’s 16th best graded linebacker overall (not just rookies), which was highlighted by a +75.1 tackling and a +79.2 coverage grade respectively.

At 6’1”, 235 pounds, with long arms (34 1/2”), speed, athleticism, and instincts, Okereke already showed off what he is capable of during his debut campaign as both a spot starter and as a sub-package linebacker on passing downs:

Right now, the Colts have to find a way to consistently get him on the field more, which means the 2nd-year linebacker should be a strong candidate to start at the ‘Sam’—alongside Anthony Walker and Darius Leonard at the second level and as a staple in nickel sub-package work.

However, with his smaller size, but exceptional speed, athleticism, and range, the ‘Mike’ remains Okereke’s best natural position long-term.

He’s a very explosive and dynamic young linebacker—especially in coverage.

Okereke has the talent and opportunity in 2020 to be a true breakout player for the Colts defense this upcoming season—perhaps even becoming a ‘future Hall of Famer’ (Pat McAfee is smiling somewhere).