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2022 NFL Draft: David Ojabo Injury Overview (2022 Fantasy Football)

2022 NFL Draft: David Ojabo Injury Overview (2022 Fantasy Football)

This one almost hurts to write about. Edge rusher David Ojabo was just about to secure his future, only to have it derailed at the last minute by a ruptured Achilles during his Pro Day workout. He was projected to go in the top 10-15 picks, but analysts say he’ll now be lucky to be selected by the end of Round 2. We just saw Cam Akers come back from this injury in 6 months, and both Kevin Durant and Klay Thompson in the NBA also have shown the ability to return. So why the drastic fall for Ojabo?

CTAs

According to a pretty extensive collection of NFL data, an Achilles injury is in the top 3 of the most challenging recoveries. In the SportsMedAnalytics (SMA) database, the typical athlete takes a whole year before even returning to the field. Declines in production of 25% have become the data-driven expectation, and those drop-offs don’t return to pre-injury levels quickly. Even the second season following the return is often affected for some players.

I know what you’re thinking. We just said Akers returned in 6 months, and he was able to carry the ball over 20 times in a playoff game this year. But, look more closely at his stat lines. His highest rushing output was a whopping 55 yards, and he averaged a horrendous 2.4 yards per carry. We’re not saying it’s all his fault, but it is a HUGE difference compared to the 110 yards per game and 4.8 ypc that he averaged in the previous postseason.

The take-home point is that players can return as early as six months after surgery, but it’s infrequent to see because of the drastically reduced performance level. Multiple variables that affect outcomes do work in Ojabo’s favor. He’s young, regarded as elite from a purely athletic metrics-based perspective, and had the talent to be considered a Round 1 selection before the injury. The SMA algorithm predicts a return to his pre-injury form, but not for 1.5 years when we add it all together. Towards the mid-point of the 2023 season, we should expect to see the player who teams thought they’d be getting now.

Landing Spot and Dynasty Outlook

David Ojabo – Baltimore Ravens, Round 2: Pick 45

The Ravens added on to a great draft by adding Ojabo, he would have been a top 15 pick if not for his Achilles injury suffered during his Pro Day.  Ojabo probably won’t get a chance to play this season but he will be a great draft and stash guy for Dynasty IDP leagues, especially ones that offer big points for sacks.

Andrew Erickson Mock Draft


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