Lions general manager Brad Holmes explains how the Jeff Okudah trade went down
It was all in all not surprising, but Lions general manager Brad Holmes explained the dynamics of the Jeff Okudah trade.
It was sudden, but not truly surprising. On April 11, the Detroit Lions traded cornerback Jeff Okudah to the Atlanta Falcons for a 2023 fifth-round pick (No. 159). It was time to move on, with decision on Okudah’s fifth-year option looming and his place on the depth chart becoming more and more tenuous.
Lions head coach Dan Campbell explained the Okudah trade from his angle last week, in plain and direct sentiment that was easy to already know. Essentially, the Lions’ offseason additions left Okudah without a firm role and he needed a change of scenery.
Lions general manager Brad Holmes had his pre-draft press conference on Thursday. It was his first opportunity to talk about the Okudah trade, and offer a little bit deeper look at it.
Brad Holmes simply explains how the Jeff Okudah trade happened
"I just think it was the right time,” Holmes said. “I think it was the right time, I think it was good for Jeff. I had a good talk with him after it was done and he totally understood it as well. So, it was great. I really respect what Jeff did. We had the conversation of, ‘OK, this didn’t happen now, is there a chance that it could happen a little bit later?’ So I think it was just good for Jeff.And I wasn’t actively shopping or anything like that. You get the call and sometimes it just lines up and it makes sense for all parties, and it did.”"
Holmes wasn’t going to say he was shopping Okudah. There was a fairly flimsy rumor/report suggesting they were willing to part with him, and in a broad sense it made a ton of sense that they were willing to trade him.
Falcons general manager Terry Fontenot made the call, and the deal quickly got done to send Okudah to Atlanta. It’s not often things like this are so cut and dry, but the Okudah trade truly was.