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2019 NFL Draft - Off the ball Linebackers

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On 12/30/2018 at 4:34 PM, jrry32 said:

He's leaving. I have that on good authority. His aggressive play didn't help the team as much as it hurt. He blew a number of coverages, he missed a lot of tackles, and he ran himself out of a lot of plays. He had great games like LSU and Michigan, but his bad games were extremely bad. 

He will fit right into the Steelers with that resume :$

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On 12/27/2018 at 4:01 PM, Ozzy said:

Joe Giles Harris on Duke not Kentucky?  Giles Harris has been a wildly productive tackler in 2016, 2017 and now 2018 before the injury.  He has multiple double digit tackle games in each one of those seasons.  Pretty hard to be slow when you get to the ball as consistently as he does.  Sure he might not be the best in coverage or super fluid in coverage but few linebackers are.  The kid knows how to make plays, not sure he comes out early as a RS JR but he has been a consistent tackler from a long time in college.  Sure he is not a 1st round pick or something but if he does come out could be a solid 3rd to 4th rounder I feel and has a chance to be a good pro.

Watched a bit more of Joe Giles Harris to get a better feel for his game.  Looked better than previous watch but still have some concerns.  Watching his games, he seemed to usually be the 2nd guy in on the tackle and not the first.  Checked out his stats after noticing that; he does seem to rack up a lot of 'assisted tackles'.  Not necessarily a bad thing, I don't view him as a pile jumping stat padder, but his lack of explosion is going to limit his TFL and solo tackle numbers.  He is physical and sheds blockers well.  Also seems to read plays correctly and is gap sound.  I wouldn't mind him in the 3rd or 4th round, but don't see him as a 1st or 2nd round talent...

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On December 27, 2018 at 4:01 PM, Ozzy said:

 

Sione Takitaki has had a great season, really like how he has looked.  Very athletic backer who can chase and tackle, could be a good 3/4 ILB and maybe play OLB in a 4/3 also.  Has pass rush skills also, was a 3/4 OLB the years before in college at BYU before they moved him to more of a ILB.  Love how intense he plays and again he is crazy productive at getting to the football.  His tape against Wisconsin alone could get him drafted higher than most thought before the season, really interesting talent.  

My fave LB prospect! Think he might make a good Sam for the 9ers. We already have his former teammate in Fred Warner and he was a very good pick. 

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On 1/1/2019 at 3:14 PM, smokeybandit said:

Josh Allen was a stud tonight in the Citrus Bowl.  But he's listed at 6'5.  He gave Trace McSorley (6'0 at best) a post-game hug and there was not much more than an inch difference between the two

Well, for one, Allen is 6'4" and (really light) change.  Last measurement from spring practices I'd seen of him was 6'4.1" (which ".1" isn't even 1/8").  And I still wouldn't be all that shocked if he came in a 6'3" and change at the combine.  He's tall enough and, probably more important, he's long enough.  I didn't see the particular hug, but it wouldn't surprise me if he (Allen) hunched a little bit sot that he could get his mouth near the earhole of Trace's helmet, since on a full field and with crowd/band noise, it can otherwise be extraordinarily difficult to be heard.

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2 hours ago, Chrissooner49er said:

My fave LB prospect! Think he might make a good Sam for the 9ers. We already have his former teammate in Fred Warner and he was a very good pick. 

Yeah Fred Warner I liked a lot in college because of his size and coverage skills for a LB, and I agree he is did great this year for the 49ers, was a great pick.  Takitaki is a little more limited in coverage but is arguably better in terms of being an explosive tackler and going downhill, probably will end up as a ILB in the NFL in a 3/4 but will see.  

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Posted (edited)
On 1/2/2019 at 12:11 PM, SBLIII said:

Vosean Joseph reminds me of Jamie Collins.

Reminds me of Danny Trevathan coming out, but with less discipline and instincts. Like if Trevathan had some quality devils lettuce right before the game, that would be Vosean.

I think I might like Jeff Allison more as a plug and play wlb (that can also play MLB) who isn't going to make too many boneheaded plays, but Vosean has a high ceiling if a coach can get him to focus his energy the right way. Seems like he has long arms and I like his rip move he uses to disengage from blocks.

Edited by Jeezla

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6 hours ago, The LBC said:

Well, for one, Allen is 6'4" and (really light) change.  Last measurement from spring practices I'd seen of him was 6'4.1" (which ".1" isn't even 1/8").  And I still wouldn't be all that shocked if he came in a 6'3" and change at the combine.  He's tall enough and, probably more important, he's long enough.  I didn't see the particular hug, but it wouldn't surprise me if he (Allen) hunched a little bit sot that he could get his mouth near the earhole of Trace's helmet, since on a full field and with crowd/band noise, it can otherwise be extraordinarily difficult to be heard.

 

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10 minutes ago, smokeybandit said:

 

Yeah, Allen's got a good 2+ inches on him there and Josh is leaning in some, versus standing upright (and he's probably getting credit for another 1.5" in his listed height because of his hair; typically peak of the forehead + ~1" is a good rule of thumb for comparing individuals' heights face to face or standing by each other).  Thanks for digging up the video!  A lazy way (and it's likely still not truly accurate) to judge this is comparing where their noses or eyelines line up when they're both standing upright.

My initial take (he's tall and long enough) stands though.

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So I watched the LSU/UCF game for Devin White purposes and came away a little disappointed. Is it just me or does he struggle moving laterally for a linebacker pegged as a top 15 pick? I now have reservations of his ability to move in coverage. He's a missile in the box and closes as well as anybody but he's not exactly adept in space. Granted, this stems from casually watching it on TV and not diving deep into the 'tape' of his season. 

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21 minutes ago, SmittyBacall said:

So I watched the LSU/UCF game for Devin White purposes and came away a little disappointed. Is it just me or does he struggle moving laterally for a linebacker pegged as a top 15 pick? I now have reservations of his ability to move in coverage. He's a missile in the box and closes as well as anybody but he's not exactly adept in space. Granted, this stems from casually watching it on TV and not diving deep into the 'tape' of his season. 

Very true but Deplit was kicked out of that game at safety, they were missing a number of other starting defensive backs and corners and he was asked to just bail at times and go back deep in coverage while other players blitzed.  Usually he is not asked to do that and yeah he is not best in coverage, most ILBs are not.  In the right system, especially a 3/4 ILB Devin White could be a monster.  Sure he is not the coverage linebacker but in terms of a tough thumper linebacker he can be it and is the best ILB in the draft if he comes out.  

Does not help the DL ahead of him is not all that great either so he is not as clean as some linebackers.  Think how productive White would be on say Alabama or Clemson, people would be talking about him as being one of the best ILB prospects ever potentially with how clean he would be and how free flowing he could be to the football.  Still the guy can get off blocks, runs well enough and his closing speed is awesome on the ball carrier.  Top 10 pick easy if not top 5 maybe.  That bowl game was a weird game with all the inexperience out there for LSU on D and the backup QB for UCF.

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On 12/31/2018 at 6:24 PM, jrry32 said:

Kentucky, UGA, Missouri, and FSU are games I remember him making frustrating mistakes in. He looked like a special player against LSU and Michigan, but he was never consistent or reliable. If somebody can get him to play assignment-sound football and play under control with his tackling (takes bad angles, overruns plays, and misses tackles because he is out of control), he could be a special LB. But that's a huge if.

I usually try to avoid the same-school comparisons because they're so easy to fall into, but does he remind you of Jelani Jenkins at all? Jenkins was a splash play linebacker that was not a great fundamentals player.

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8 minutes ago, BleedTheClock said:

I usually try to avoid the same-school comparisons because they're so easy to fall into, but does he remind you of Jelani Jenkins at all? Jenkins was a splash play linebacker that was not a great fundamentals player.

I don't remember Jenkins well enough to say.

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Posted (edited)

I'm really a big fan of Tre Watson, and the other Tre (Lamar) isn't bad, either. I'm guessing they've already been discussed, however. None of the following guys are stars, but in the mid rounds onward I think some of these prospects could stick as special teams or subpackage players:

 

  • Andrew Dowell, Michigan State, is fairly undersized, but appears to have the athleticism to make plays in space and pursue to the sidelines. Spends time lined up over the slot in coverage in the games I've seen. 9 passes defended this year. Reminds me a little bit of Matt Milano.
  • E.J. Ejiya, North Texas, was extremely productive over the last two years, but I wish he weren't so hesitant right after the snap. Still, his volume numbers show he's got a chance to compete -- could be a developmental guy.
  • Trevor Morris, Rutgers, has three straight years of 100+ tackles. Again, not the biggest or fastest, but he has a decent feel for the game.
  • Austin Robinson took a circuitous route to Houston, but his time at QB and S probably helps him understand passing concepts. Needs more time to develop as a LB, but I think he's got some potential despite being a 5th year senior.
  • Gary Johnson, Texas, flashes a lot on film. Not a finished product, but could be a good player with some patience. Rumored to be extremely fast.
  • Cody Barton, Utah, is a bit limited athletically, and seems to get sucked in by play action too easily, but he had a strong senior year and could worth consideration in the late rounds / priority UDFA. Often lines up teammates on the field. Communicator.
  • Brian Bell, Akron, rangy guy who plays with some intensity. Special teams will be his ticket to seeing the field.

 

OLB types

  • Tipa Galeai, Utah State, is closer to an edge player than an off the ball type, but I wouldn't be surprised to see him play a role similar to Anthony Barr or Jamie Collins. Intriguing athleticism. Off field problems to review. 
  • Justin Hollins, Oregon, plays on the edge, but also  lines up as an OLB in coverage at times. He's probably a 43 or 34 OLB in the pros. Flashes as an athlete.

 

 

 

Edited by reamer

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