Projected 40-Time: 4.65
Star Rating: Grade: 94
Draft Projection: 1st Round
Star rating is based on a prospects standing (as of March 5th) in the 2010 Scout.com Draft Rankings. A prospects grade is measured on the following scale:
85-100 = 1st - 2nd
_70-84 = 3rd - 4th
_55-69 = 5th - 6th
_40-54 = 7th Round - UDFA
Strengths: Weatherspoon is an instinctive defender who plays the game with great passion and enthusiasm. He has a solid frame and possesses great awareness. He plays with a degree of suddenness and is forceful at the line of scrimmage. He diagnoses the action quickly, has the lateral agility to pursue sideline-to-sideline and demonstrates proper tackling technique. He shows his athleticism by eluding blockers in space and has the vision to track the ballcarrier from multiple angles. He’s an effective blitzer who has the discipline and patience to disrupt the flow in the backfield. He understands his assignments and gets good depth on drops in coverage. He’s able to transition with wide receivers and tight ends that enter his area and displays above average cover skills down field. He’s flies around the ball and has good ball skills. He has great leadership qualities and will be a welcomed addition to a locker room and an immediate fan favorite.
Weaknesses: He’s an energetic player who has to control his emotions on the field, because he plays overly aggressive at times and gets caught out of position. He has trouble disengaging against physical blockers and tends to get lost in the shuffle. He’s a sound tackler, but occasionally will go against the grain and attack high and not wrap up.Steuber Says: A three-year starter at Missouri, Weatherspoon has amassed more than 100 tackles in each of the last three seasons, but in 2009 he suffered his lowest tackle total (111) since breaking into the starting lineup in 2007. At 6-foot-1, 241 pounds, Weatherspoon has the ability to be a game changing type of defender who plays with the unparalleled enthusiasm, and possesses the versatility to play inside or outside in any defensive structure. There are questions about his ability to shed blocks and make a consistent impact against the run, but in the right scheme, preferably in a 3-4 defense, Weatherspoon will make an immediate impact. Weatherspoon is a borderline first round draft pick, but after his strong showing at the Senior Bowl, it appears that his stock is continuing to rise and he will likely come off the board in the 22 – 31 range. Possible suitors for Weatherspoon could be the New England Patriots (No. 22), Philadelphia Eagles (No. 24), Arizona Cardinals (No. 26), Dallas Cowboys (No. 27), Minnesota Vikings (No. 30), Indianapolis Colts (No. 31) or New Orleans Saints (No. 32).
A member of the Pro Football Writers of America and the Football Writers Association of America, Chris Steuber has provided his analysis of the NFL and NFL Draft prospects on the web and on the radio since 1999. Steuber’s features are published across the Scout.com network and on FoxSports.com. If you wish to contact Chris Steuber, email him at: email@example.com. You can also now follow Chris Steuber on Twitter.