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OLBs from #28 on?

Discussion in 'Patriots Draft Talk' started by patchick, Mar 6, 2011.

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  1. patchick

    patchick Moderatrix Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Let's assume that DaQuan Bowers, Von Miller, Robert Quinn, Aldon Smith and Ryan Kerrigan -- whatever you may think of them -- are all off the board at pick 28, and the Patriots are still in the market for an outside pass rusher. I'm curious who you all see as the next tiers.

    Some possibilities I see are below, in descending order with my own subjective grades. Don't be shy chiming in. ;-)


    Brooks Reed
    : The more I see, the more I like. Showed off explosion with a great 10-yd split at the Combine, moved better than I expected in space, and looks as tenacious in drills as on the field. Great effort and leadership guy. A mini Kerrigan. (My grade: high 2nd.)

    Justin Houston
    : A pleasant surprise at the Combine with his size/speed combo, but in drills showed he can only move forward. Explosive pass rusher, but not a huge repetoire of moves. (My grade: mid-2nd.)

    Jabaal Sheard
    : Powerful, hustling pass-rusher who's solid against the run. Good effort/intensity, questionable agility. Doesn't always play in control. (My grade: late 2nd.)

    Sam Acho: Shorter player with nifty quickness and agility and good motor, but not the most explosive/powerful pass rusher. (My grade: high 3rd.)

    Greg Romeus: Potential to be special as an elephant type; potential to not play a down in the NFL. Shouldn't be the only player drafted at the position. (My grade: 4th.)

    Akeem Ayers: An interesting athlete who isn't instinctive or powerful enough to match his reputation. (My grade: 4th.)

    Jeremy Beal: I can't ignore the utter disaster of a post-season Beal has had. His measurables are weak, too. Yet he's smart, hard-working player who did too much on the field for 4 seasons to write off altogether. (My grade: 5th.)

    D'Aundre Reed: Caught my eye at the Combine -- had a good-sized frame and looked impressively agile and athletic, if unpolished, running LB drills. D. Reed was the 3rd DE in a rotation at Arizona headed by Brooks Reed and Ricky Elmore, and was reportedly the best run stopper of the group. I went back and looked for him in pass-rushing highlights of the the other 2, and liked what I saw. (My grade: 6th.)
  2. sbpatfan

    sbpatfan Banned

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    I like Chris Carter but I'm in the minority with that one.
  3. DW Toys

    DW Toys Rookie

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    Superb post.
    I am in the Reed camp as well. Can't see why Ayers has a first round value. Beal is one of those "He really rots at combine stuff, but he'll win you a game or two a year". Beal might be worth a gamble.

    I am starting to invest more in the kid from Fresno, but the absolute sleeper can be Greg Romeus who has a bad disc and the an ACL last year. He has been o.k.d by four separate doctors and is ready to go. I am sure he has to have the ACL in his head, but this kid could be the steal that Hernandez was and had the same issues of Tate the year before and BB took a shot on both.

    If he left after Pitt's 2009 season after his junior year, he might have been one of the first five players taken last April.At 6-7, 285 pounds, Big East Defensive Player of the Year in 2009.Has quick feet of a basketball player, size, quickness, strength, agility.As he has been in a rehabbing stage, Romeus is hence under the radar.
    I'd say a third rating on him even though some say 5th.
    DW Toys
  4. DaBruinz

    DaBruinz Pats, B's, Sox PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Hasn't Robert Quinn's stock been falling because of the poorer than expected Combine numbers? Or am I getting players mixed up?
  5. MaineMan

    MaineMan Rookie

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    Romeus? I see him listed at 6'5"/265. At 6'7"/285, I'd have him put on another 10-15 lbs and play at 3-4DE.
  6. Box_O_Rocks

    Box_O_Rocks PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Pernell McPhee: I've seen him playing 4-3 DE, 3-4 OLB and DE, he can go either way as an OLB or DE, but take a few of lbs off him in the S&C program and his explosiveness and quickness will leap. Recognize he's a juco still catching up to technique and play recognition and he's a late 3rd who will probably be there in the 4th.

    Brandon Bair: Like McPhee I've seen him playing all along the line in various 3-4 and 4-3 roles. He's got the quickest hands I've seen for knocking down a pass. He can also slim down and get stronger/quicker in the S&C program, and if there's one college DL who made me think of a 2001-2005 Big Willie, it's this kid. Don't expect big sack numbers, but do expect him to clog passing lanes, be stout against the run, and to collapse the pocket as a power rusher. If all else fails sign him to the PSquad for the season and bulk him into a reserve DE. 5th round.

    Ryan Winterswyk: I loved this kid's game since he was a rFr. He's another who would need to slim down in the S&C program to help his explosiveness/quickness, but he's a very smart, all hustle kid who plays a complete game. 6th round.

    Karl Klug: This kid has been playing DT because Iowa already had DEs they liked. When I watched an Iowa game the one DL teams planned to double-team was Klug; not Clayborn, not Ballard - Klug. He can take off 20 lbs to improve his explosiveness and open field agility and you have the best 3-4 LOLB candidate in this draft. He gives up 34 lbs to John Moffitt and their battle inside was better than most prize fights, the kid was a State level wrestler as well as LB and his use of leverage in the trenches reminds me of Stephen Neal. Play him at 255 and he'll set the edge and get after the passer, he'll need time to develop in coverage, he'll be a STs stud. This kid in the trash is a pigskin seeking missile, he finds the ball before it gets to the LOS and he makes plays on it in the backfield. 7th round.

    Bruce Miller: Too short, arms too short ... he made everybody around him at UCF better. He hustled, he played inside, he played outside, he dropped into coverage occasionally, he finished his senior year as the active sack leader (I'm not sure if that was NCAA, but it was FBS). If he can't make it at OLB he might kick inside ala Bruschi, and he'll be an ace on Special Teams. 7th round.

    Josh McNary: Typical military academy kid, undersized scrapper going toe-to-toe with the bigguns from Football Factory U and making them work for every inch and point like they were walk-ons trying to win a scholarship. He won praise at the Shrine game; "McNary's quick feet, balance and reliable open-field tackling stood out Saturday, perhaps proving that the former walk-on's career 49 tackles for loss and 28 sacks (both Army records) prove he's a rare service academy prospect worth keeping an eye on in the future. - Rob Rang, The Sports Xchange/NFLDraftScout.com." Undrafted Free Agent.
  7. upstater1

    upstater1 Rookie

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    The Patriots can afford to gamble in the third on a player like Romeus.

    Remember, 15 years ago, the Patriots gambled on another injured player out of Pitt, Curtis Martin. I wouldn't be at all against them going that route again.
  8. MaineMan

    MaineMan Rookie

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    Seems to me you both have offered up a lot of reasons NOT to be overly concerned about taking an OLB in the first round.
  9. kurtinelson

    kurtinelson Rookie

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  10. Metaphors

    Metaphors Rookie

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    Steven Friday (VA Tech) - Listed at 6'4", 250 but doesn't play as strong as that would suggest. He is very athletic and instinctual which makes him an absolute pest as a pass rusher. He is my middle round guy if the Pats don't load up earlier.

    Ricky Elmore (Arizona, 6'5", 255) - Limited physically but an overachiever. Always finds a way to be productive but his ceiling may fall below the "playmaker" level. Ideal guy to take late and see if he can be a system guy and play above his limitations. His heralded teammate sucking all the oxygen out of the room may cause him to drop further than he should.

    Thomas Keiser (Stanford) - Listed at 6'5", 257. He seems to show up on film even if you aren't exactly sure why. Another guy that seems too limited in strength and quickness to be a starting 3-4 OLB, but when you watch him it is hard to dismiss him entirely. Another late round guy that may be a diamond in the rough...or a golfball lost in the rough.
  11. patchick

    patchick Moderatrix Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    The funny thing about watching Elmore highlight videos is that they make me like both the Reed boys more. Brooks drew a lot of double teams, freeing up Elmore -- and when D'Aundre subbed in for Brooks, he often inherited those double teams. I seem to recall one play where D'Aundre pushed a pair of OLs into the backfield on the QB's blindside, delivering him into Elmore's waiting arms.

    Forgot about Winterswyk -- I like his all-around game too, but he seems sorely lacking in suddenness and explosion. I see a very low ceiling.
  12. mgteich

    mgteich PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Once the top DL's and OLB's are gone, the pickings seem thin. In the end, you have 2 choices at 28/33 and only four more in the 3rd-4th round.

    There needs to alot more evaluation of Houston and Reed. If we haven't chose a passrusher at 17, it will takes nerves of steel to pass at 28.


  13. patchick

    patchick Moderatrix Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Nothing I've seen of Houston says he's worth close to the #28 pick, especially if other options include guys like Wilkerson, Heyward, or Sherrod. And Reed, while I do like him a lot, seems like a stretch for the first round.

    But I definitely see what you mean: IF you rate Reed far above any other 3-4 OLB prospect left on the board, and the Jets, Steelers and Packers all pick between 28 and 33...yikes.
  14. bucky

    bucky Rookie

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    I don't know who in particular might be the best. But I'm not encouraged by any of them. Basically, there are 2 ways you can go -

    1) DE conversion project who's be a 3rd down rusher for us for a couple of years. BB doesn't like spending high picks and those. Therefore, there aren't too many around. Problem is even if we get one, it'll be nothing more than a 3rd down player and even a marginal one at that. I'm thinking of someone like Romeus or Reed here.

    2) Draft someone with LB experience and move them to OLB. Problem here is that you still have somewhat of a project and they don't have great pass rush skills. So essentially you need to get someone who will at least be an upgrade to Ninkovich as an overall LB. That's where a guy like Ayers or KJ Wright come in.

    Regardless of which way we go, I don't think there will be an instant upgrade to the OLB position with anyone outside those top 3 guys or so.
  15. the wrothbroughterer

    the wrothbroughterer Rookie

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    I got that impression as well. As I recall, scouts were really disappointed in his body composition. He suffered from "Skinny Leg Syndrome" and I can't remember explicitly if he was a bit doughy, too.

    If there is a lock-out I could see him dropping fast. With basically 2 years out of football, minimal tape, and 1 good season under his belt in a weaker conference, it is very easy for teams to lose interest in him.
  16. kurtinelson

    kurtinelson Rookie

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    I think it depends on which scout you are referring to. Mayock is still very high on Quinn. In today's pass happy NFL, the ability to rush the passer is a critical need for all teams. Mayock and Sapp consider Quinn a freak of nature up there with Dwight Freeney in his ability to "watersurf" or rush the passer from the edge with an insane body lean, beneath the pad level of OTs.
  17. DonBlackmon55

    DonBlackmon55 Rookie

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  18. jeffbiologist

    jeffbiologist Rookie

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    My favorite for a pass rusher is Houston but my binky as a ST demon and developmental player is Bruce Carter. He doesnt fit the size/shape mold of BBs LBs but he is a superb athelete and I would much rather develop an athelete than another Chicken legged tweener.
  19. WesWelker83

    WesWelker83 Rookie

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    I think you are delusional on Klug. Hes a solid player but most sites have him as a 5-7th rd pick. You think hes the best LOLB in the draft? I really respect your opinion but I don't see it. Id rather have Quinn, Reed, Kerrigan, Sheard, etc.

    The guy is a tweener and asking a player to drop 20 pounds is a lot. Its not like Klug is fat and out of shape. I like him as a player I just don't think hes fits our scheme. I don't see how hes going improve his agility that much to play 3-4 OLB. Hes also never dropped into coverage and he always played with his hand in the dirt. He would be used best as a 4-3 DE.
  20. Box_O_Rocks

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    Best LOLB in this draft for NE yes. I think of Mike Vrabel and Willi Mac setting the edge in the run game at LOLB, Klug isn't going to be an overall OLB the way they are, but if you want a run stuffing OLB prepared to meet OL and smaller fry at the point of attack it's Klug. At 273 for the Shrine Game weigh-in, he's in a position to drop 20 lbs without losing any strength. If NE didn't already have such a strong, young group of ILBs I'd say grab him late and start turning him into a SILB on the PSquad - the kid has a nose for the ball in trash, whether it's the blocking angles or he just has great field vision, but he finds the ball carrier.
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