Full Name:Rufus Alexander School: Oklahoma
Ht:6-0 Wt: 220 40: 4.63 Yr: 4Jr
Pos: Speedy linebacker who stands out in pursuit. Immediately diagnoses the action, displays quickness in all areas of the game and makes a lot of plays laterally. Tough in run defense and flashes on the scene. Slips blocks and covers a tremendous amount of area on the field. Solid backpedal in coverage.
Neg: Handled at the point and does a lot of running around blocks rather than meeting opponents head-on.
Analysis: A solid weak side defender for the next level, Alexander is a high revving, intense linebacker. Always working to make positive plays, he's best suited for a system which allows him to freely flow to the action.
Full Name:Jon Alston School: Stanford
Ht:6-0.5 Wt: 215 40: 4.65 Yr: 4Sr
Pos: Outstanding athlete who plays with great explosion and speed. Fast off the edge, quickly changes direction and loses no momentum altering his angle of attack. Easily runs with tight ends or backs in coverage. Outstanding in pursuit and covers a great amount of area on the field. Deceptively strong and holds his ground against blocks.
Neg: Not instinctive or decisive. Does not always play with great balance or body control. Smothered at the point by large opponents.
Analysis: A linebacker in a strong safety's body, Alston is a terrific athlete slowly progressing on the field. May be limited to the number of schemes he'll be effective in at the next level but the speed and explosion are enticing.
Full Name:Brandon Archer School: Kansas State
Ht:6-1 Wt: 223 40: 4.71 Yr: 4Jr
Pos: Undersized yet explosive linebacker outstanding in pursuit. Tenacious, quickly fills gaps up the field and fast to the sidelines. Breaks down well, effective in space and rarely off his feet. Solid job reading and diagnosing the action.
Neg: Not efficient and over pursues the action. Small and slow shedding blocks.
Analysis: A developing NFL prospect, Archer offers a lot of speed and explosion for the next level. Size limitations reduce the number of schemes he would be effective in yet has starting potential in the right system.
Full Name:H.B. Blades School: Pittsburgh
Ht:6-0 Wt: 238 40: 4.68 Yr: 3Jr
Pos: Fluid linebacker with a good feel for the game. Diagnoses the action, stays with assignments and disciplined throughout the play. Scrapes laterally making plays out to the sidelines and gets depth on drops. Possesses a good feel for coverage. Quickly fills gaps and tough in run defense.
Neg: Not a flashy or sudden defender. Suffering with minor injuries this year.
Analysis: Possessing solid size, instincts and football bloodlines, Blades is a good prospect at weak side linebacker.
Full Name:Bobby Carpenter School: Ohio State
Ht:6-3 Wt: 254 40: 4.61 Yr: 4Sr
Pos: Athletic defender with outstanding size\speed numbers. Instinctive, diagnoses the action and quick to key the play. Efficient, takes proper angles and works to get involved. Constantly puts himself in a position to make plays on the ball. Gets adequate depth in coverage.
Neg: Does not always play to his timed speed. Must develop more moves shedding blocks.
Analysis: Possessing first-round computer numbers, Carpenter is beginning to improve his production on the football field and meet the expectations placed upon him. Offers great upside for the next level and has the ability to develop into an NFL starter.
Full Name:Will Derting School: Washington State
Ht:6-0 Wt: 230 40: 4.68 Yr: 5Sr
Pos: Versatile defender who can be used at a variety of linebacker positions. Quick diagnosing the action, displays a good head for the ball and scrapes laterally to make the tackle. Works to get off blocks and slides off opponents. Effective in pursuit and gets depth on drops. Good speed to the sidelines and cuts off the flanks from running backs.
Neg: Undersized and slowed through the trash. Not strong at the point and has trouble bringing opponents down on initial contact.
Analysis: A high motor player who gives top effort, size limitations will push Derting into the late rounds next April. Has possibilities as an inside linebacker in a 34 defense or could be used on the weak side in a conventional system.
Full Name:Omar Gaither School: Tennessee
Ht:6-2 Wt: 235 40: 4.78 Yr: 4Sr
Pos: Athletic linebacker who makes plays sideline-to-sideline. Quick to the flanks, runs with tight ends in coverage and displays excellent range. Does a fine job slipping potential blocks on his way to the action.
Neg: Not strong at the point and slow to shed once engaged at the point.
Analysis: Showing good promise last season as a junior, Gaither has adequate size\speed numbers for the next level yet must polish his game.
Full Name:Chad Greenway School: Iowa
Ht:6-2 Wt: 243 40: 4.50 Yr: 5Sr
Pos: Productive four-year starter with an outstanding head for the game. Disciplined, quick to diagnose and displays a sixth sense on the football field. Effectively uses hand technique to defeat blocks, collapses from the outside defending the run and gets depth on pass drops. Plays with good pad level and consistently puts himself in a position to make a play on the ball. Efficient, takes good angles to the action and wraps up ball handlers. Effectively placed over slot receivers and does a solid job in coverage.
Neg: Lacks great speed to the flanks. Does not always play under control.
Analysis: Combining outstanding size\speed numbers and football instincts, Greenway offers terrific potential at a number of linebacker spots. Plays with a good motor and will be an asset to any team in the NFL.
Full Name:Spencer Havner School: UCLA
Ht:6-3.5 Wt: 235 40: 4.65 Yr: 5Sr
Pos: Athletic prospect with top size\speed numbers. Aggressive in run defense, displays a good head for the ball and constantly around the play. Squares and wraps up tackling. Diagnoses plays as they unfold and takes good angles to the action. Scrapes well to the sidelines. Plays with forward lean and tough knock off his feet.
Neg: Does not always play to his computer numbers. Struggles in coverage, marginal skills in pursuit and does not show speed to the flanks. Has a history of injuries.
Analysis: A smart linebacker, Havner sometimes looks better than he plays. Must pull the pieces together and become the complete package to have any shot of developing into a starter at the next level.
Full Name:A.J. Hawk School: Ohio State
Ht:6-1 Wt: 243 40: 4.51 Yr: 4Sr
Pos: Explosive linebacker who plays with the a great degree of suddenness. Aggressive, always working to get involved in the action and goes for the knockout blow. Creates havoc firing up the field on the blitz. Intense and never stops. Squares and wraps up at the point of attack. Sacrifices his body in order to make the tackle. Outstanding first step quickness. Instinctive, diagnoses the action and constantly around the ball. Effective playing over tight ends in coverage. Slides outside\in defending the run or scrapes in the box and gets to the ball handler. Adequate hands making the interception.
Neg: Lacks great body control and does not immediately alter his angle of attack. Marginal height, which may pose a problem at the next level.
Analysis: Possessing outstanding intensity, work ethic and football instincts, Hawk would be effective in a variety of defensive schemes in the NFL. Needs to polish the rough edges of his game yet a first round choice who should produce as a rookie.
Full Name:Thomas Howard School: UTEP
Ht:6-2.5 Wt: 230 40: 4.48 Yr: 5Sr
Pos: Undersized linebacker outstanding in pursuit or coverage. Displays a burst of speed, excellent range and easily runs downfield with fast tight ends. Quick footed moving laterally, effective in space and flashes on the scene. Immediately changes direction or alters his angle of attack.
Neg: Easily removed from the action by opposing tight ends. Not strong and has tackles broken. Does not always play with a great degree of efficiency.
Analysis: A solid weak side linebacker for the next level, Howard is a terrific athlete that can be used in a variety of systems. Needs to brush off the rough edges of his game yet a first day pick next April.
Full Name:Clint Ingram School: Oklahoma
Ht:6-1 Wt: 240 40: 4.63 Yr: 5Sr
Pos: Aggressive linebacker who plays much bigger than his size\speed numbers. Fast to the sidelines and cuts off flanks from running backs. Nicely collapses outside\in defending the run. Holds his ground against blocks and immediately gets back to playing form off the initial hit. Disciplined and remains with assignments.
Neg: Bites on play action passes, gets sucked up the field then caught out of position.
Analysis: Displaying the ability to force the action, Ingram makes plays all over the field. Must improve his consistency yet a potential first day pick who will contribute at the next level.
Full Name:Roger McIntosh School: Miami-Fl
Ht:6-2 Wt: 235 40: 4.65 Yr: 5Sr
Pos: Excellent athlete who plays to his size\speed numbers. Fast laterally, displays range in pass defense and quick up the field. Possesses a great burst and recovers from mistakes. Scrapes laterally, packs jolt at the point of attack and wraps up tackling. Runs downfield with backs in coverage.
Neg: Not overly instinctive and lacks a feel for coverage. Late reactor who does not always take correct angles to the action. Lacks functional playing strength.
Analysis: A versatile defender who looks the part, McIntosh has been plagued with injuries and inconsistency the past three seasons. Offers upside but far from the finished product.
Full Name:Terna Nande School: Miami-Oh
Ht:5-11.5 Wt: 228 40: 4.69 Yr: 4Sr
Pos: Undersized yet explosive linebacker outstanding in pursuit. Possesses a burst of speed, quickly changes direction and fast to the sidelines. Plays with terrific leverage and rarely off his feet. Deceptively strong and holds his ground against blocks. Explodes on the scene and plays with a good degree of suddenness. Adequate job diagnosing the action.
Neg: Gets caught up in the trash or over pursues the action, not playing with great body control. Inefficient, does not always take good angles to the play and makes his first move up the field.
Analysis: A high intensity player, Nande has potential as a nickel linebacker and special teams demon in the NFL.
Ht: 6-2 Wt: 223 40: 4.71 Yr: 3Jr
Pos: Good athlete who makes plays in every direction of the field. Fast to the flanks, explosive filling gaps and gets depth on pass drops. Flashes on the scene and plays with a great degree of suddenness.
Neg: Easily blocked by opposing tight ends and must improve his playing strength.
Analysis: A prospect with excellent upside potential for certain one-gap schemes, Nicholas is a player who must be watched the next two years.
Full Name:A.J. Nicholson School: Florida State
Ht:6-0.5 Wt: 241 40: 4.68 Yr: 4Sr
Pos: Explosive linebacker who flashes on the scene. Gets excellent depth on drops, quickly changes direction and displays terrific range on the field. Plays with good pad level, fast in every direction and stays on his feet. Finds his way through the traffic to the ball carrier and easily redirects to the action. Possesses good hands for the pick. Makes plays in pursuit running down opposing ball handlers.
Neg: Not large and slowed at the point. Lacks ideal height.
Analysis: A defender who possesses solid instincts and playing speed, Nicholson would be effective in a one-gap scheme where he is allowed to roam freely to the action.
Full Name:Moses Osemwegie School: Vanderbilt
Ht:5-11.5 Wt: 220 40: 4.72 Yr: 5Sr
Pos: Explosive linebacker who stands out in coverage. Displays good footwork, fluid changing direction and makes plays all over the field. Quickly fills gaps in run defense, likes to get involved in the action and flies around the football. Scrapes laterally in the box and displays a good head for the game.
Neg: Easily knocked from his angle of attack. May only be effective in certain schemes at the next level.
Analysis: A real leader of the defense, Osemwegie has been a productive linebacker in college. Size limitations will reduce his value next April but he has a place in the NFL.
Full Name:Kai Parham School: Virginia
Ht:6-3 Wt: 245 40: 4.65 Yr: 4Jr
Pos: Outstanding athlete who displays top sideline-to-sideline range. Explosive filling gaps in run defense and hard hitting at the point of attack. Strong, holds his ground against blocks or defeats them altogether. Plays with good pad level and possesses a good change of direction. Fast to the flanks and gets depth on drops.
Neg: Not efficient and does not consistently take correct angles to the action. Gets caught up in the trash laterally.
Analysis: Possessing outstanding size\speed numbers, Parham has displayed consistent progress on the field. Durable and offers good upside for the next level.
Full Name: DeMeco Ryans School: Alabama
Ht: 6-1 Wt: 236 40: 4.71 Yr: 4Sr
Pos: Terrific weak side prospect in the midst of an outstanding senior campaign. Plays with good pad level, quickly fills gaps up the field and wraps up at the point. Immediately picks up coverage assignments, gets depth on drops and runs with tight ends or backs downfield. Fast to the flanks, displays top sideline-to-sideline range and rarely off his feet.
Neg: Swallow up at the point or easily blocked by opponents. Just average instincts in coverage.
Analysis: Lacking classic size, Ryans has shown consistent progress on the field and is presently playing his way into the draft's top 40 choices.
Full Name:Ernie Sims School: Florida State
Ht:5-11 Wt: 220 40: 4.58 Yr: 3Jr
Pos: Forceful defender who plays much bigger then his listed size. Breaks down well, quickly reads the action and remains disciplined throughout the play. Gets depth on drops, displays outstanding range and fast to the flanks. Forceful up the field, likes to deliver the knockout blow and brings opponents down on initial contact. Solid change of direction and skill in pursuit. Plays with a good degree of suddenness. Has a burst to the action. Technique tackler. Sacrifices his body in order to make the stop.
Neg: Involved in well documented off the field incidents. Lack of size reduces the number of schemes he would be effective in.
Analysis: Productive in run defense or pass coverage, Sims is constantly flying around the ball making positive plays. Potential first round choice for a team who runs a defensive scheme similar to the Indianapolis Colts or Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Full Name:Cameron Vaughn School: LSU
Ht:6-3.5 Wt: 237 40: 4.73 Yr: 4Sr
Pos: Underrated linebacker who does a good job in run defense while also holding his own in coverage. Diagnoses the action, scrapes laterally and displays range to the sidelines. Gets depth on drops and cognizant in coverage. Takes good angles to the play and a sure handed tackler. Flashes explosion and suddenness.
Neg: Does not display the ability to immediately alter his angle of attack. Inefficient and at times takes himself from the action.
Analysis: A solid yet unspectacular prospect, Vaughn is a good late round pick next April who could find his way onto a roster as a seventh linebacker.
Full Name:Gerris Wilkinson School: Georgia Tech
Ht:6-3 Wt: 238 40: 4.74 Yr: 5Sr
Pos: Well sized linebacker best defending the run. Quick up the field, hard hitting and squares into tackles. Forceful against ball carriers and brings them down at the point of attack.
Neg: Marginal skills in coverage and displays little awareness in pass defense.
Analysis: Productive on the college level, Wilkinson must improve his instincts and abilities in coverage to have any shot of developing into a starter at the next level.
Ht: 6-0 Wt: 215 40: 4.55 Yr: 5Sr
Pos: Instinctive linebacker productive the past three seasons. Fast to the flanks and quickly gets out to the sidelines making plays. Quickly changes direction, solid in pursuit and effective on the blitz. Gets depth on drops displaying range and skills in coverage. Immediately keys the action then diagnoses plays. Leader on the defense who makes the calls.
Neg: Occasionally bites on the play action. Small, removed by big blockers and has difficulty bringing opponents down at the point of contact.
Analysis: A solid outside linebacker early in his college career, Williams has been out of position in the middle the past few seasons. Lacks size, growth potential and not a player for everyone but has potential on the weak side in a one gap system.