While outside linebacker would appear to be a major target with an early-round draft pick in two weeks, there are several late-round prospects this year who could help on special teams and perhaps blossom into a key component on defense.
One of those is Texas A&M's Cyril Obiozor, who is coming to Green Bay for a pre-draft visit on April 15, according to Scout.com NFL insider Adam Caplan. The visit is the fifth to be reported by Packer Report. All five are defensive players, and Obiozor is the second outside linebacker prospect.
Obiozor is a two-year starter — including 2008 under Mike Sherman — with the size and athletic ability to develop into a quality player. He started all 13 games as a junior, leading the Aggies in sacks (3.5) and tackles for loss (nine). As a senior, he started all 12 games, with three sacks and 6.5 tackles for loss.
"It's definitely a strength of mine," Obiozor told Packer Report when asked about his pass-rushing abilities. "I'm more effective on the edge where I'm isolated against an offensive tackle."
Obiozor played 4-3 defensive end for the Aggies but, at 6-foot-4 and 270 pounds, he says the Packers project him as an outside linebacker. He says he dropped into coverage on occasion, so he's not totally unfamiliar with the coverage skills required of a linebacker.
While he was not invited to the Scouting Combine, the Packers certainly took notice of Obiozor's performance at the Aggies' pro day in early March. With scout Alonzo Highsmith in attendance, Obiozor ran his 40-yard dash in 4.71 seconds, with a 39.5-inch vertical leap and 25 reps on the 225-pound bench press.
"I would give a team a lot of versatility, a lot of value," Obiozor said. "I'm not just a guy that goes out there on defense. Downs one, two and three, I can help on special teams. I can be useful in a lot of ways."
Obiozor, who is three credits short of getting his degree in information technology, said he did all the special teams for the Aggies. He led the kickoff unit in tackles. That ability certainly would add interest for the Packers, who are looking to rebuild their special teams after being among the worst in the league last year.
Asked about his hobbies, Obiozor said playing video games. He hasn't created his NFL likeness in the popular "Madden" game, though. If he's drafted, he can play the "real" animated version of himself.
"Hopefully, I'll play myself pretty soon on ‘Madden,'" he said with a laugh.
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Bill Huber is publisher of Packer Report magazine and PackerReport.com and has written for Packer Report since 1997. E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org, or leave him a question in Packer Report's subscribers-only Packers Pro Club forum. Bill also is giving Facebook and Twitter a try. Find him on Twitter at twitter.com/packerreport