Athletic Freak Odafe Oweh Feels Even Freakier

OLB Odafe Oweh

Odafe Oweh has always been an athletic freak. He was one of the greatest pre-draft testers of all-time, putting on an absolute show at his Penn State pro day in 2021.

Well, the freak is feeling even freakier entering his sophomore season in the NFL.

Because of offseason shoulder surgery, Oweh dedicated much of his offseason to working on his legs, making them as strong as they can be. A few days into training camp, he reports feeling more burst than he did last year.

"Just bending the edge, I feel like my legs are stronger so I can get out after I make that third step and I'm dipping," Oweh said. "I made a nice move yesterday, and I felt it in my legs – using all that work and everything."

Oweh was limited to individual drills during Ravens OTAs and minicamp, but he appears to be full-go at the start of training camp. He has had a few quick beats in 11-on-11 drills so far, a blur around the edge.

"When he throws his fastball, it's up there. It's 100-plus," first-year Ravens Defensive Coordinator Mike Macdonald said. "He's freaky. I expect him to do some great things for us."

How great?

"My expectation for Odafe is to be a dominant player," Macdonald said. "I think that's the vision that he has for himself, and he should be a guy that, when we need him, he can get to the quarterback."

Oweh showed plenty of burst early last season. After not registering a sack during his final college season at Penn State, he tracked down three in his first five NFL games. He had eight quarterback hits and two forced fumbles over that span as well.

However, Oweh's shoulder injury caused him pain over the second half of the season that he said got progressively worse. He grinded through it, but a foot injury ultimately knocked him out for the final two games. Oweh finished with five sacks, 15 quarterback hits and 33 tackles, knowing there's a lot more he can do.

"When I first got here, I was kind of jittery. I was just trying to make every single play. But now, I'm just trying to make the right play," Oweh said.

"I'm not necessarily trying to jump out of gaps and try to force plays. [I'm] being patient. And obviously, in pass rushing, being more calm, reading everything, taking what I see, bending the edge, and all the stuff like that. So, you'll see a different Odafe this year, for sure. … I'm fired up to make a big impact and help my team win."

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