Ernie Sims: The Perfect Fit in Detroit

It was a foregone conclusion in many minds that the Lions, with an emphasis on defense, would draft either a linebacker or safety with their No. 9 overall pick. Many just didn't expect Ernie Sims. Still, Sims was the best linebacker available, and contrary to public perception, he was not a reach at that slot. Much more inside, including Sims impact in Detroit!

Full Name: Ernie Sims School: Florida State Pos: OLB

Ht: 5-11 Wt: 231 40: 4.56 Year: 3Jr

Compared to: Derrick Brooks, OLB, Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Bio: Two-year starter awarded All-Conference honors both seasons. Junior totals included 72/10/2.5 when he intercepted two passes and broke up four more. Sophomore numbers included a career-high 86 tackles.

Pos: Explosive linebacker who displays a complete game. Fast, quickly changes direction and flashes on the scene, forcing the action. Explosive collapsing from the outside making plays, fires up the field in run defense and gets depth on drops in coverage. Outstanding lateral movement skills and effective in pursuit. Instinctive and does a good job staying with assignments.

Neg: Takes false steps to the action and is not efficient. Struggles with his back to the

Analysis: A three-down linebacker who plays bigger than his listed size, Sims has starting potential in a one-gap system. Should quickly find a starting spot at the next level once he gets get accustomed to the size/speed.

How he helps Detroit: It was a foregone conclusion in many minds that the Lions, with an emphasis on defense, would draft either a linebacker or safety with their No. 9 overall pick. Many just didn't expect Ernie Sims. Still, Sims was the best linebacker available, and contrary to public perception, he was not a reach at that slot. Detroit fell in love with both Michael Huff and Ernie Sims with the notion that A.J. Hawk wouldn't be available. They were right, and split the difference, thus the pick of Sims.

What makes the selection of Sims so intriguing is that he fits the Cover 2 scheme that Detroit runs like a glove. According to Scout.com's Scott Eklund, "Sims is an excellent Cover-2 linebacker. He plays well in zones and since the Lions defense spends most of their time in the Cover-2 scheme, he would be a perfect fit for Detroit. His abilities would mesh nicely with Teddy Lehman on one side and Boss Bailey in the middle. His speed also lends him to being an excellent headhunter on special teams. He’s an ideal strongside linebacker, but he could play weakside and fit in nicely with Detroit's stable oflinebackers.

STRENGTHS
 Change of Direction
 Lateral Movement
 Speed
AREAS FOR IMPROVEMENT
 Size
 Vision
The Skinny: Complete player who does well in all facets of the game and plays bigger than his listed size. Can be fooled and take false steps, and needs to play better with his back to the ball

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