By: Derek Havens
In early March, I expressed my infatuation with University of North Carolina’s Robert Quinn during the pre – draft process. Many of you who follow me on twitter, also know how I feel about the TarHeel standout. For those of you who are not familiar with the prospect, here is what I wrote in my College Prospect Evaluation of OLB’s –
“Robert Quinn: 6’4 – 260 (UNC)-
Ideal size for the Patriots system. Quinn, who was suspended for the entire 2010 college season, is a natural pass rushing monster. He has an unreal motor along with all the intangibles for the position. He can over power blockers but does play a little high at times. Quinn is far and away my favorite prospect this season because he is a pass rushing beast with the size Belichick loves to have at the OLB position.
This Patriots team needs a dynamic edge rusher who can get after the opposing quarterback and I believe Robert Quinn could be that guy. The way this draft is beginning to shape up, I would not be shocked to see Quinn go anywhere from No. 1 to No. 12 in the first round. “
Like many scouts and analysts, I too expected a stronger workout from Quinn at the annual NFL combine even in Indianapolis. He certainly has the physical tools to make professional scouts and fans salivate. Instead, his numbers were mediocre and at best above average. However, he could be the best pure pass rushing outside linebacker in the upcoming NFL Draft and vowed to make an improvement.
Quinn had a shot to improve his mediocre Combine numbers at his Thursday pro – day and did not disappoint.
His forty time went from 4.7 to 4.59. and his broad jump improved to an incredible 10 feet, 5 1/2 inches. His short shuttle of 4.26 seconds and 24 reps on the bench press were also improvements over his Combine workout.
Even though there isn’t a great chance the Pats can land this stud OLB without trading up, he seems like a great fit and the team has the ammo to pull the trigger. The NFL combine event will be held Thursday, Feb. 24 through March 1st at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis. Patriots nation will hold its collective breath in anticipation until then.
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