Tuesday, June 7, 2011

2012 NFL Draft: Senior Outside Linebacker Watch

1. Travis Lewis, Oklahoma – Lewis surprised many by coming back for his senior season but wanted a chance to win a National Title and should have a good shot to do that. He is a great fit as a 4-3 outside linebacker with all the skills to be a very good player in the NFL. Last season he had 109 total tackles, 5.5 tackles for loss, 1.5 sacks and 3 interceptions.

2. Zach Brown, North Carolina – Not many linebacker compete on the school track team, but that is something that Brown does and some say he can run a 4.28, 40, saying that shows what a great athlete he is. Last season he had 72 total tackles, 1.5 tackles for loss, and 3 interceptions. I think you can expect bigger stats this season and him to push for a 1st round selection in April.

3. Nigel Bradham, Florida State – Bradham can run side line to side line and make plays, he fit best in a 4-3 defense and can drop in cover and make plays in the passing game coving backs and tight ends. Last season he had 98 total tackles, 5.5 tackles for loss, and 5 sacks.

4. Bruce Irvin, West Virginia – Irvin plays defensive end in college, but projects to be a 3-4 outside linebacker because is only around 235 pounds. He is a good edge pass rusher, the question is going to be can he drop in coverage when asked to at the next level, but should be able to. Last season he had 21 total tackles, 14 tackles for loss, and 14 sacks.

5. Sean Spence, Miami (FL) – Spence doesn’t have the size you want in an outside linebacker, but he can run and make plays all over the field. Last season he had 111 total tackles, 17 tackles for loss, and 2.5 sacks. He does a good job in coverage and fits as a weak side outside linebacker in a 4-3 defense.

6. Lavonte David, Nebraska - David had 152 tackles in his first season to set a Cornhusker single-season record for tackles. He also had 15 tackles for loss, 6 sacks and 10 pass break-ups. He has good speed and instincts to make plays all over the field, both in the passing game and against the run.

7. Adrian Robinson, Temple – Robinson plays defensive end at Temple, but projects as a 3-4 outside linebacker at the next level. He has good size and decent speed. As a sophomore had 13 sacks but his stats weren’t that great last year with 38 total tackles, 4.5 tackles for loss, and 3.5 sacks.

8. Keenan Robinson, Texas – Robinson is a good overall athlete who can run and make plays all over the field who has the prototypical body type for an outside linebacker in the NFL. Last season he had 113 total tackles, 8 tackles for loss, 2 sacks and 2 interceptions.

9. Emmanuel Acho, Texas – Acho started at both middle linebacker as well as strong side outside linebacker and was effect at both positions. Last season he had 87 total tackles, 12 tackles for loss, 3 sacks and 1 interception. He is a big physical, smart linebacker who is a good leader.

10. Bobby Wagner, Utah State – Wagner is very good against the run but needs to improve in his pass coverage and might be better as an middle linebacker then and outside linebacker in the NFL. Last season he had 133 total tackles and 8 tackles for loss.

11. Kyle Wilber, Wake Forest
12. Danny Trevathan, Kentucky
13. Tyler Nielsen, Iowa
14. Mychal Kendricks, California
15. Jerrell Harris, Alabama
16. Darius Fleming, Notre Dame
17. Dexter Heyman, Louisville
18. Nathan Stupar, Penn State
19. Nathan Williams, Ohio State
20. Andrew Sweat, Ohio State

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