S, Southern Mississippi
Numbers: 6'1 (6012) / 227 pounds / 4.46-4.54 forty-time (NFL Pro Day)
2005 stats: 69 tackles, 40 assists, 2-24-0 interceptions, 2 passes defensed
The player: Along with his twin brother, outside linebacker Kevis, Coley was a visible leader of the Golden Eagles defense. Although he fared much better as a junior when he played closer to the line of scrimmage, that stands to reason as Coley's best attributes are all about going forward and side-to-side, not backwards. A hard-nosed, high-effort player who isn't all that strong but works so hard he appears he is, Coley can be a force against the run, even in traffic. He doesn't shed all that well, but understands angles and often uses a quick burst to evade would-be blockers. He's not as great in the passing game.
Although he has good hands for the interception and is smooth in his backpedal, he's not a natural outfielder and struggled in deep coverage when asked to play free safety as a senior. Although he makes a good initial pop, his tackling style is not great and his tackles can be broken. A sought-after undrafted free agent, he signed with the Giants in May 2006, but was cut before preseason.
How he fits: Unlike many NFL teams, the Colts are not afraid of the concept of a 227-pound linebacker and, if they sign Coley, will most likely let him try for a position there rather than at safety. He has a great degree of natural skill for the position, but his development has been slowed by position switches. If he can show the Colts that he knows how to tackle, he could get a shot.
Reminds me of: Brandon Johnson, a thin but active outside linebacker who is steadily earning playing time with the Cardinals.
(AP Photo: Steve Coleman)
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