In the 5th round of the 2021 NFL Draft, the Atlanta Falcons selected Notre Dame defensive end Adetokunbo Ogundeji with the #182 pick overall. This selection completes a developmental process of Ogundeji by Mike Elston and Brian Kelly that has been as good as any before him.
Ade was a 3-Star recruit from Michigan with a handful of middle of the road offers, but his frame and potential caused Notre Dame to make him a priority in their 2016 recruiting class. He didn’t see the field as a freshman as the process to turn him from project to player was underway.
In 2017, he was able to see the field in 5 games and we started to see the progress take a small step forward. Finally in 2018, Ogundeji became a bigger part of the Irish defense with 23 tackles, 3 TFL, and 1.5 sacks. He was a bright spot in the playoff loss to the Clemson Tigers. 2019 saw him become an even part of the famous Mike Elston rotation, and in 2020 he continued that success.
JULIAN OKWARA WITH ANOTHER STRIP SACK!!— ND Whiteboard (@ND_Whiteboard) September 28, 2019
ADE OGUNDEJI WITH THE SCOOP AND SCORE!!!
IRISH UP 28-17!!! pic.twitter.com/gqbCrI1low
In his time at Notre Dame, Ogundeji was used on the outside and was shifted inside at defensive tackle at times. His versatility was very important to the success of the defense, and he performed at a high rate on the field. he finished his career with 13 sacks, 17 TFL, and 7 forced fumbles.
His developmental process is a true success story, and now Ade (Adetokunbo if you want his mom to like you) takes the next step on what has been an incredible journey.