Mike Carter USA TODAY SPORTS

An insiders look at new Oakland Raiders linebacker Shilique Calhoun

An insiders look at new Oakland Raiders linebacker Shilique Calhoun

Dave Berk of Spartan Digest joined Silver & Black Report to give some insider insight on new Raiders linebacker/defensive end Shilique Calhoun.

Dave Berk on what Shilique Calhoun brings to the defense: 

Athletic player who also played some tight end during his Michigan State career.  At defensive end, Calhoun is explosive off the edge with the ability to get to the quarterback.  If used as an outside linebacker, Calhoun will have to make some adjustments in being able to drop into coverage.

On Calhoun's versatility:
We didn't see it at linebacker, but did see it with Calhoun taking reps at tight end.  Keep in mind Calhoun entered Michigan State weighting 215-pounds with a long, lanky frame of a basketball player.  
On where Calhoun excels:
Shilique excels using his quickness and speed off the edge.  He struggles at time getting locked up in hand combat with experienced offensive tackles.
On Calhoun playing against the run:
At times we've seen Calhoun struggle against power running teams.  However, his ability to give back side pursuit makes his capable of going sideline to sideline.
On reports that he lacks the "nasty" mentality: 
I feel scouts look at the fact he's a kid that is always in a good mood and with a joke as being soft.  But Calhoun excelled in the Big Ten where he found plenty of tough tackles to face during his career.  
On his pros and cons:
Pros - Athletic with a long frame and a natural bender.  Plays with a high motor and desire to excel.  Cons - At times he's been caught guessing the snap count getting pulled off sides. Gets locked up with offensive linemen struggling to release.
On his leadership skills:
Respect!!!  Calhoun knows others are watching him and is the type of guy to be the first in the meeting room and the last to leave.  Players gravitate to him because of his upbeat personality.  
Any other info on Calhoun?
Shilique Calhoun is not a finished product.  He's still learning the game and from the sound of Jack Del Rio, Calhoun could get a chance to play out in space where he can use his athletic ability in a different way.  Once Calhoun concentrates on football 100-percent of the time, look for his game to go up a notch.  Always a great interview as he doesn't know when to say no.

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